5 Signs You Need an Assistive Mobility Device

A group of seniors used a variety of assistive devices

If you find yourself missing out on activities with family and friends because you are often worried about falling down or losing your balance, it could be a sign that it’s time to consider some help. Many assistive mobility devices such as a cane, walker or even a wheelchair can help you with daily tasks or outings with friends.

An assistive mobility device can help contribute to your wellbeing and give you increased independence. But how will you know when you should start to check out the options available? This guide can help you know when the time is right.

1. You Experience Frequent Falls

The World Health Organization reports that falls are the second leading cause of accidents among seniors. Those over the age of 65 are at an increased risk for serious injury. While leaving your house typically increases your likelihood of a fall, it’s important to understand your home can pose a similar risk – especially the bathroom. If you have two or more falls within a 3 to 6 month period it could be time to consider a basic mobility device, such as a cane.1

2. You Become Easily Exhausted

Issues with exhaustion or weakness can signify that it is time for a mobility aid. This is especially common for people with multiple sclerosis, ALS or those who are post-stroke. If you struggle with fatigue when you leave the house for extended periods of time, a wheelchair or walker with a built-in seat can help. Having access to a seat can help you head out for the day and relieve any unnecessary stress about being away from home.

3. Excursions Cause Pain

A study from the National Institutes of Health says that more than 1 in 10 adults suffer from chronic pain.2 The battle against pain is never easy so it’s important to consider how to improve your lifestyle while fighting pain. If you begin to dread errands or outings due to pain while walking, an assistive device can help give you your freedom to stay out longer and reduce recovery time afterward. Start with a cane and increase to a walker only if needed.

4. Bad Weather Increases Your Worry

If you already struggle with balance, pain or fatigue, bad weather can add to your stress of trying to walk on your own. Many seniors will avoid going out in inclement weather leading to isolation. Even those without any problems or disabilities can struggle in the snow and ice during winter. Some ways to make your movements safer include:

  • Use boot covers with studs on the bottom to improve traction.
  • Take a walker or wheelchair with you to prevent falls.
  • Avoid traveling alone.

5. You Have Balance Problems and Dizziness

Troubles with balance and standing can lead to falls and other serious problems when out and about. A mobility device can help keep you stable and prevent any problems. If you are not sure if you have bad balance, ask yourself these questions:

  1. Do I feel unsteady?
  2. Do I lose my balance and fall?
  3. Do I feel like I’m falling?
  4. Does it feel like the room is spinning?
  5. Do I feel lightheaded?
  6. Does my vision get blurred?
  7. Do I feel disoriented or lose my sense of time, place or identity?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, check with your doctor and find out if a cane or walker could help with your stability.

Gain Your Independence

While you may not like the idea of a mobility device at first, remember that talking to your doctor about your options is the first step to gaining back your freedom. Another way to keep your independence is with the assisted living facilities at Advent Christian Village. A variety of amenities and a caring staff provide a helping hand along with a high level of self-care. Contact us today to learn more about our vibrant senior living.

References:

  1. 4 Signs it’s time to look for mobility aids. www.burtsrx.com. (accessed Jan 16 2019).
  2. More Than 1 in 10 American Adults Experience Chronic Pain. www.washingtonpost.com. (accessed Jan 16 2019).
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