With the high likelihood of falls in seniors, training fall recovery skills is critical. Falls are most common at night when people are trying to get to the bathroom, but they can happen during the day when people trip over loose items on the floor. Recovery training can occur through both sequential methods and through backward-chaining. Educate yourself on the proper fall recovery techniques below.
Fall Recovery: Backward-Chaining
Patients should begin in a sitting or standing position, depending on their preference, and ensure that they’re comfortable with the step they’re on before moving on to the next. If one is seated on a chair or mat, the patient should lean to one side, sliding one knee over the edge until it rests and is supported by a cushion. After that, the patient pushes himself back on the chair.
Do use a support to lower yourself to a seating position if necessary. After lowering yourself, carefully return to the standing position. Use a cushion or wedge to return to kneel halfway before returning to your starting position again. Once comfortable, try returning to your starting position without cushion support – this is known as high kneeling.
Continue to high kneel between the seated and standing stages until you feel comfortable with this routine. The next step is to take a prone kneeling stance by planting both your hands and knees in front of you when transitioning from seated to standing. The second-to-last stage of this exercise is to assume a sideways resting position and work through the previous steps the same way. When you’re fully confident, progress to lying down with your face up on the floor. This is known as a supine position. Repeat the previous steps and safely recover.
Fall Recovery: Sequential Teaching
This technique of instruction begins with the patient in a supine position. During the earliest phases, a floor mat may be employed. Initial training can begin on a mat table if a patient has trouble lying down on the floor. For further support, a nearby chair may be used. You should carry out the following steps once you’re supine:
- Roll your body over to your left or right side
- Push up into a side sitting position with your left arm outstretched
- Place your right hand next to your left extended arm and push up with both hands, rotating your body until you’re kneeling on all fours
- Rest your weight on both knees, and if required, use the chair to assist you in kneeling down
- Bring your left leg up all the way, until your foot is planted securely to the floor
- Ascend to a standing position on your own or by pushing up with both hands on the chair
Almost 60% of falls happen in institutional settings like day-care centers. Balance, strength, range of motion, cognition level, and the patient’s own comfort level will all play a role in selecting a teaching method that’s most suitable. As such, an accurate assessment of these elements is required. At TerraBella Lake Norman, our exclusive senior lifestyle programs are an ideal way for your loved ones to remain sharp and practice recovery techniques. Daily schedules are constantly updated to reflect changing interests and trending activities to will help keep your senior family members engaged. Book a tour today!