Physical Therapy for Home Safety

WHAT CAN PHYSICAL THERAPY DO FOR YOU?

Physical therapy can help you improve your strength, balance and overall safety in your home through modifications and adaptive equipment. A physical therapist can evaluate your balance and safety during ambulation and help you choose the appropriate equipment if you need any to prevent falls. You safety when you are walking, getting up and down from a chair or bed or getting in and out of the tub or shower can all be helped through physical therapy. Equipment needs such as a walker or cane and bathroom items such as a tub bench or elevated toilet seat can be used for safety to prevent falls and make moving easier.

How can I get PHYSICAL THERAPY?

If you have a medical condition that has limited your function in the home and outside the home then your physician may order a physical therapy evaluation for you. Your physician may order a home evaluation for safety and to improve your function. You can be evaluated for any needed equipment in your home to make you safer and help prevent falls. You may also need exercises to strengthen and improve your balance. Depending on your insurance you may need a physician’s order or prescription for physical therapy in the home or in an outpatient setting.

What if I think I need a home safety assessment but do not have a medical condition? I want to make changes to my home so I don’t fall and make my home safe and healthy to prevent an unforeseen medical condition.

You may need some changes in your home and safety tips that www.checkhomesafety.com can provide so you can prevent a fall or future medical condition such as a broken hip. We can provide a customized home assessment so you can make those changes in your home before you get to that unsafe level and your home will be healthy too!! You may want an individual to come to your home for a one on one assessment or you may want to take the Customized Home safety Modification online. The online service for a customized home safety assessment will be coming soon and www.checkhomesafety.com can keep you updated when it will be released.

How do I set up a home safety assessment?

Contact us via our email if you are in the surrounding area of Little Rock, Arkansas and we will set up an appointment for you. Our services provide home safety assessment if you live in the surrounding area of 45 miles of little rock. If you are outside of our radius then we will send you our online customized home safety assessment when it is complete to your email. Please sign up for email safety tips andreminders. Print out the safety checklist to help you make safety changes.

How can I Maintain my Strength and balance to help prevent falls?

There are many things you can do to make yourself safer in the home beside environmental changes. YOU can maintain your strength, balance and safe function by performing daily exercises at home or in group setting outside your home. Here are a few exercise tips to help maintain your function and strength and balance.

DAILY EXERCISES THAT TAKE ONLY 15-30MINUTES A DAY

You should perform these daily 10-20 repetitions or until you are fatigued then rest for 1-2minutes then repeat again(one more time to fatigue; this may be 10 or 20 repetitions or more)

  1. SQUATS OR KNEE BENDS: STANDING SQUATS BESIDE YOUR BED OR A CHAIR X10-20 REPETITIONS
  2. SIDE KICKS: STANDING SIDE KICKS with SUPPORT FROM A TABLE, WALKER OR OTHER STABLE SURFACE YOU CAN HOLD ONTO WITH YOUR HANDS. You may place a strong/sturdy chair in front of you to hold the back or you may use a walker. Kick out to side 10-20 repetitions
  3. HEEL RAISES/TOE RAISES: STAND WITH SUPPORT OF A TABLE OR CHAIR and LIFT YOUR HEELS UP and DOWN THEN YOUR TOES UP and DOWN X 10-20REPETITIONS.
  4. BRIDGES: Lie down on your back: BEND YOUR KNEES and PLACE FEET FLAT THEN LIFT YOUR TRUNK and BUTTOCKS; HOLD EACH LIFT 5-10 SECONDS THEN REPEAT 10-20 REPETITIONS.
  5. LEG LIFTS: LIE DOWN ON YOUR BACK and LIFT ONE LEG UP AT A TIME 10-20 REPETITIONS, REST THEN REPEAT.

REMEMBER TO NEVER HOLD YOUR BREATH and REST AS OFTEN AS NEEDED!!

try these exerices and monitor your improvements in strength and balance. Never begin these exericse unless you have cleared with your physician and have no contraindications to exercise.

these are not intended to be medical advice and only to be performed if approved by your physician or a liscensed physical therapist.

What can I do to improve my posture?

Having proper posture and maintaining good strength in your postural muscles can help decrease wear and tear on your muscles, ligaments, joints and other structures of your spine. Be responsible for your health and make the effort to be aware of your body and the stress you may place upon it. Sometimes when we get very busy it is difficult to avoid stress and we may get tired which lead to fatigue and we may be unaware of added stress to our body.

Follow the recommendations below to decrease stress on your body and help protect your joints.

  1.  Avoid extended or prolonged static positions. If you must sit or stand for a long period of time have the proper equipment to support your body such as a good ergonomically correct chair or a back support pillow.
    1. You may also need to change your work area to bring your daily work tasks and items you regularly use to your work area or within reach. Making changes such as bringing the work space to you or you moving closer to your work space can decrease stress on your spine and extremities. This is one way you can avoid or help prevent musculoskeletal disorders or msds by changing your work area and providing support to your body.
    2. Change your tasks or rotate jobs tasks so muscle will get breaks and not fatigue and other muscle will stay strong.
  2.  Strengthen your muscles so your joints will be protected. Specifically strengthen your spine by having strong abdominal muscles, back extensors of your low back and strong legs. You should exercise regularly as recommended by your physician or an exercise professional such as a physical therapist that will progress you at your health level.
  3. Avoid extended positions of your neck while in sitting, standing, lying or bending over while performing tasks. You should keep your neck in straight alignment and follow proper lifting technique.
  4. Take breaks as needed to decrease fatigue and stress on you physically and emotionally.
  5. Check with your physician if beginning any new exercise program so you progress at your level of fitness and your vitals are monitored if needed per your heart health.

What can i do to help follow proper lifting techniques and proper body mechanics?

  1. never lift anything too heavy by yourself. It is always safer to get help by others or use proper equipment such as a dolly to assist your lifting.
  2. Make your items lighter by taking out heavy items or breaking your lifting tasks into smaller ones so you do not get fatigued or in a hurry and forget your proper mechanics.
  3. Keep your back straight and stomach/abdominal muscles tight or contracted during your lift.
  4. Do not strain or do not hold your breath.
  5. Lift with your legs not your back by squatting down to pick up item.
  6. Hold items close to your trunk; never reach and try to lift item that is away from your trunk
  7. Never pull unless the item is light and your have your back straight and stomach muscles tight. You should push your heavy item rather than pull.
  8. Never lift and twist at the same time; you should lift the item then turn with your back straight or pivot on your feet. If you have to twist the items should not be heavy and you should have your stomach muscles tight and back straight. Keep your neck straight and not bent over or looking down.

What is the best way to get up out of a chair?

Four steps before getting out of a chair:

  1. scoot to the front of the chair or near the edge. Hold with your hands on the arm rests or something stable near so you keep your balance.
  2. Use your arms on the chair surface or armrests to push
  3. Get feet under your knees with good stance; feet should be approximately shoulder width apart.
  4. Lean shoulders forward over your knees then push with your hands to help lift your buttocks off the chair. You may have one hand on a table or walker in front of you for balance if needed.

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