Doctor%20taking%20blood%20pressure%20of%

HOW CAN I PREVENT FALLS ?

Speaking Up About Your Concerns

Primary care providers play an essential role in ensuring that all adults 65 years and older are screened at least once a year to help identify and manage their fall risk factors. However, we all have a role to play in helping to prevent falls. This is why we encourage you to consult the right person for assistance as soon as possible if you have any concerns about your risk of falls or if you have identified a significant hazard in your community.

 

For information about measures you can take to address your concerns, please feel free to consult the sections below. 

Consulting Your Primary Care Provider

It is recommended that all adults 65 years and older be screened at least once a year by their primary care provider (family physician or nurse practitioner) to help identify and address their risk of falling.

 

Your provider may start by asking you to answer a series of questions to complete their initial evaluation. To help with this process, remember to bring your completed copy of the Staying Independent and Staying Confident Checklists.

If you do not currently have a provider, you are encouraged to register with Patient Connect NB. Once registered, you will be assigned to a provider on a first-come, first-serve basis. For more information or to register, please call Tele-Care at 811 or click on the following link for online registration.

​All medications including prescription, over-the-counter, vitamins, herbs and other types of natural health products, should be reviewed at least once a year by a qualified healthcare professional. While your primary care provider (family physician or nurse practitioner) is able to complete that task, you may choose to consult your local pharmacist since you may be eligible to have a publicly-funded, medication review as part of the NB PharmaCheck Program.

In addition to being able to complete a comprehensive review of medication, pharmacists can provide a wide range of services such as prescribing certain medications, giving flu vaccines and giving advice on buying cough syrup, vitamins and over-the-counter medications.

 

For a list of available pharmacies near you, please click on the following link.

Consulting an Allied Healthcare Professional

In addition to seeing their primary care provider and pharmacist annually, older adults can get extra help with their effort to reduce their risk of falls by consulting allied healthcare professionals such as nutritionists, physiotherapists and optometrists.

 

A nutritionist is a healthcare professional who advises others on matters of food and nutrition and their impacts on health. This can be particularly important for older adults since they require fewer calories to maintain their weight but not fewer nutrients. Consider consulting a nutritionist to help reduce your risk of falls by assessing your nutritional status and making simple changes to your diet such as including more calcium rich foods.

Physiotherapists are healthcare professionals that combine their in-depth knowledge of the body and how it works with specialized hands-on clinical skills to help restore movement and function when someone is affected by injury, illness or disability. This is especially important for older adults at high risk of falls since they may require personalized help to improve their functional mobility and balance. Consider consulting a physiotherapist for the development of an exercise program that is tailored to your specific needs and capabilities.

Optometrists are healthcare professionals who provide primary eye care by completing examinations to diagnose and manage various vision abnormalities.This is especially important since the likelihood of developing eye conditions such as glaucoma or macular degeneration increases as we age.

 

NOTE: All older adults should visit their optometrist for a comprehensive eye exam at least once a year to assess their eye health and detect any changes to their vision. For a list of available optometrists near you, please click on the following link.

Getting Involved in Your Community

We all have a role to play in helping to prevent falls. Supporting awareness campaigns, hosting group learning opportunities or leading exercise sessions for older adults are just a few examples of activities that you can do to help make your community safer.

If you are interested in learning more about ways you can get involved, please click on the following link.

Resources

  • Find a Pharmacy

    • Developed by the NB Pharmacists' Association