BALANCE AND FALL PREVENTION
Balance And Fall Prevention
More than 40% of people hospitalized from hip fractures do not return home and are not capable of living independently again. Our physical therapists offer numerous options for treating balance problems, based on each person’s needs. They are trained to evaluate multiple systems of the body, including the muscles, joints, inner ear, eye-tracking ability, skin sensation, and position awareness in the joints (proprioception).
Our physical therapists in Amelia, Nottaway, and other counties in Virginia are experts in prescribing active movement techniques and physical exercise to improve these systems, including strengthening, stretching, proprioception exercises, visual tracking, and inner ear retraining.
Your physical therapist can help treat your balance problems by identifying their causes and designing an individual treatment program to address your specific needs, including exercises you can do at home. Your physical therapist can help you:
Reduce Fear Of Falling
Your physical therapist will assess problem footwear and hazards in your home that increase your risk of balance problems or falling. Household hazards include loose rugs, poor lighting, unrestrained pets, or other possible obstacles. By addressing specific problems that are found during the examination, your physical therapist will help you regain confidence in your balance and your ability to move freely and perform daily activities. As you build confidence in your balance and physical ability, you will be better able to enjoy your normal daily activities.
Your physical therapist will help you regain the ability to move around with more ease, coordination, and confidence. They will develop an individualized treatment and exercise program to gradually build your strength and movement skills. Your physical therapist will also choose specific activities and treatments to help restore normal movement in any of your joints that are stiff. These might begin with "passive" motions that the physical therapist performs for you, and progress to active exercises that you do yourself.
Your physical therapist in Virginia will teach you exercises for both static balance (sitting or standing still) and dynamic balance (keeping your balance while moving). They will progressively increase these exercises as your skills improve. Your physical therapist will determine if any of your major muscles are tight and teach you how to gently stretch them. They will also assess your posture, and teach you exercises to improve your ability to maintain proper posture. Good posture can improve your balance.
Your physical therapist will teach you exercises to address muscle weakness or to improve your overall muscle strength. Strengthening muscles in the trunk, hip, and stomach (ie, “core”) can be especially helpful in improving balance.