With age, individuals find that their balance has steadily decreased over time. While balance is something that we take for granted in our youth, balance plays an important role in minimizing falls and other injuries for seniors and elderly. If you are noticing a decline in your aging loved one’s balance or mobility, worry not. There are simple exercises and activities that can be done in the home to help restore and maintain balance, and they require little to no direction. These activities are safe for most seniors and minimal supervision or assistance from a family member or professional caregiver is typically all that is needed.
- Walk a Straight Line – Many senior care experts recommend working on balance by putting painters tape on the floor and having seniors walk along the line with one foot in front of the other. If the senior struggles with balance, a family member or caregiver should walk beside the senior. In the beginning, it may also be a good idea for the senior to walk in an area where they can hold onto a counter or another sturdy object to increase stability.
- Focus on Point – Balance involves a combination of things, including visual cues. Draw a dark circle about the size of a quarter on a piece of paper and have your aging loved one focus on this point while walking. This method for improving balance is often used by physical therapists and other home health care professionals in Vancouver. However, before starting this particular activity, it is important that throw rugs and any objects that could pose a tripping hazard are removed from the area.
- Step Over Objects – When balance becomes a problem, seniors start to shy away from certain activities and many develop a fear about stepping over things. By practicing this movement with the senior, caregivers can help their aging loved ones regain confidence, while also helping to improve overall balance. Seniors should first step over something small and soft such as a roll of paper towels or even a stuffed animal. Careful supervision and assistance is important in these activities to promote safety at all times.
Maintaining balance with age offers a wealth of benefits for seniors with the foremost being reduced fall risk. If you are concerned about the safety of your aging loved one at home, whether due to frailty, immobility or an advanced condition, contact Home Care Assistance today. Our highly trained and experienced caregivers can not only help with balance exercises, they can assist with activities of daily living, personal care, transportation and more to ensure a safe and comfortable home environment.
Learn more about our home care services by clicking here or contact a Care Manager directly at 778-279-3634.