How to Improve Senior Mobility Significantly
Helping an older loved one remain independent can be challenging. The risk of falls is frightening, especially since the National Council on Aging reports an older adult dies from a fall every 19 minutes. The good news is there are safe ways for seniors to stay mobile for longer.
Start with the Doctor
The first step in helping a senior with mobility issues is to speak to the doctor. It’s important mobility issues are evaluated to ensure there is no underlying medical condition that is causing your older loved one to be unsteady on their feet.
Once the doctor rules out there is no medical condition that needs to be treated, you can move on to some other options in increasing mobility.
Physical therapy can help seniors increase strength, flexibility, and balance, so they can walk farther without risk. This treatment can take a few weeks before improvements are noticed, but with consistency, this can be an effective way to help senior mobility.
In addition to the exercises the physical therapist recommends, it’s important to be as active as possible safely. This can be done with the assistance of someone like yourself. Taking walks with your loved one each day can help with strength, which then can help lower fall risk.
Yoga is another great exercise for seniors. The benefits include improved flexibility, strength, and better mental health. Since this exercise is beneficial at any age, it’s also a great activity to do with your older loved one.
Swimming is a low-impact exercise that provides many benefits, such as increasing strength, flexibility, and cardiovascular health. Fall risk is low with this exercise, so it’s safe and effective.
Mobility devices are the #1 best way to help senior mobility. Possible options include:
- Mobility Scooters: These products are easy to use and can take seniors wherever they want to go indoors and outdoors. There are many varieties available: foldable, extra large, lightweight, and many come with special features to make them even easier to use.
- Power Wheelchairs: These do not need the user to spin the wheels. With a controller, the user can have the freedom to go anywhere. They are a lot like scooters but they tend to be more comfortable because they are meant to be used for longer periods of time.
- Canes: Canes can help seniors walk for greater distances because they help with balance. This mobility device is intended for people who have a lower risk of falling than those who use mobility devices.
Walkers: Walkers are perfect for indoor use to get around short distances such as going from a couch to the bathroom.
Choosing the best mobility device depends on how your older loved one will use it. If you’re seeking something for indoor use to increase safety while walking from room to room, a cane or walker may suffice. However, if you’re seeking something that can be used indoors and outdoors to make it very easy to get around as safely as possible, mobility scooters and power wheelchairs are best.
Benefits of Better Senior Mobility
Mobility is freedom and independence. Being able to get around on your own is something many people take for granted. As people get older, they realize this and yearn for the days they could easily go where they wanted to go without issue. With help from a doctor, physical therapist and mobility devices, older individuals can increase their mobility, so they can feel better about themselves and their lives. It improves quality of life. It fights depression. It enables seniors to live their Golden Years healthy and happy.
For more information on mobile devices that can help the senior in your life, contact our mobility experts at 1-800-674-8395.