Time for a Cane or Walker?
One of the most common concerns over growing older cited when aging people are surveyed is loss of independence. Three out of four adults 50 years of age or older want to stay in their own homes and communities as they live through their twilight years. But with this, many older people worry about not being able to move around as well when they get older, meaning they’ll be unable to continue with their favorite activities, visit their favorite places, or even keep up with the necessary daily tasks of living.
The key to maintaining independence is maintaining mobility. Falls are one of the greatest threats to continued mobility for seniors. Each year, millions of people aged 65 or older fall, with one out of four older people falling each year. Falling once doubles your chances of falling again. And one in five falls causes a serious injury, such as broken bones or head injury.
The good news is that assistive devices, like canes, walkers, wheelchairs, and others, can help prevent you from falling, keeping you safe both in your home and when out and about.
If you find yourself feeling unsteady, supporting yourself on furniture, counters, or walls when walking, it may be the right time to give some serious thought to using a device like a cane or a walker. You may also be recommended to use a mobility device after a surgery, especially ones involving your joints.
There are a number of different options as far as mobility devices go. The one that will be right for you depends on your needs, making consulting with an occupational or physical therapist helpful when first starting out.