At Paul Klein, DPM, FACFAS we find that there are unique foot care concerns at every stage of life. September 22nd is Falls Prevention Day and we would like to take this opportunity to address this and other foot health issues that pertain to our senior patients.
Reducing Fall Risks
Falls are the primary cause of fatal and non fatal injuries in patients over the age of 65. There are several ways to help prevent falls. These include:
- Have eyes examined regularly to make sure that low vision problems are not creating fall risks.
- Do a home safety assessment. Be sure stairs have handrails on both sides, lighting is sufficient in all areas of the home and remove tripping hazards such as area rugs, magazine racks, foot rests and other low-to-the-ground pieces of furniture and electrical cords that go across walking areas.
- Get foot pain diagnosed promptly. If your foot hurts, you’re likely to change the way you walk to avoid the pain. This can lead to balance issues and ultimately cause you to take a tumble. Our podiatrist, Dr. Paul G. Klein, will examine your foot and correct the cause of any foot discomfort before it creates a serious disability.
Senior Foot Health Needs
In addition to preventing falls, there are other ways to help protect the feet of older patients. These include:
- Inspect feet regularly. Look for changes in the skin and toenails, swelling, bruising or unusual lumps or bumps on the feet, changes in foot shape or size or toes that appear to be moving out of normal alignment. Report anything unusual to the foot doctor promptly. In many instances, serious health problems that affect the whole body such as diabetes, arthritis and nerve issues first show signs in the feet.
- Keep the blood flowing. Don’t sit or stand in one position for long periods of time. Put your feet up when you are sitting or lying down. Don’t smoke as it impedes circulation.
- Wear good quality shoes. Properly fitted shoes that provide sturdy ankle and arch support will go a long way to preventing chronic foot problems and injuries.
If you have any questions about senior foot health, contact our Wayne, NJ office at: 973-595-1555.