ESPECIALLY FOR SENIORS: Learn fall-prevention strategies


As we’ve said before, many times, falling is right up there at the top of my “not-to-do” list. My most recent fall – and there have been few – was when one of my feet went to sleep while I was reading, feet on the hassock. When I stood up, I fell right down! Bruises were the result, rather quickly since one of my medications is warfarin. I learned after that to always “test” my feet before I stand up. That’s how quickly a fall can happen, and it could have been much worse, except I fell back into my soft recliner. So the following information was of interest to me and no doubt will be to readers.

The seventh annual Falls Prevention Awareness Day will be observed on Sept. 23 – the first day of fall. The event seeks to raise awareness about how to prevent fall-related injuries among older adults. Southern Maine Agency on Aging is collaborating with the University of New England, MaineHealth and others to offer fall-risk screening events in southern Maine, along with information and resource tables to help people understand the risk factors for falls and learn more about fall prevention strategies and local resources.

To check your risk of falling, review these questions:

Have you fallen in the past year, been advised to use a cane or walker, sometimes felt unsteady when walking, worried about falling, pushed with hands to get up from a chair, have trouble stepping up onto a curb, had to rush to the bathroom, lost some feeling in your feet, taken medicines that make you tired or light-headed, taken medicines to help you sleep or improve your moon or felt sad or depressed?

If you’ve said yes to even one of these questions, you could be at risk for a fall. Talk with your doctor; learn more at a falls screening, or sign up for A Matter of Balance workshop to reduce the risk of a fall. Southern Maine Agency on Aging offers A Matter of Balance workshops throughout the year. Call 396-6583 for dates and locations.

Maine is part of the national Falls Free Initiative, which includes more than 40 states and 70 national organizations, professional associations, and federal agencies across the country dedicated to reducing fall-related injuries and deaths among older adults.

Check out the following Fall-Risk Screening Events:

Monday, Sept. 11, 1-3 p.m., Southern Maine Agency on Aging, Scarborough

Wednesday, Sept. 24, 10 a.m.-noon, Woodfords Congregational Church, Portland

Wednesday, Sept. 24, 10 a.m. -noon, J.R.Martin Community Center, Biddeford

Friday, Sept. 26, 10 a.m.-noon, Park Street School, Kennebunk

For more information, call Maria DeFabritiis at 396-6583 or email [email protected].

Kay Soldier welcomes reader ideas for column topics of interest to seniors. She can be reached by email at [email protected], or write to 114 Tandberg Trail, Windham, ME 04062.