Mobility problems in older adults may be attributed to several common conditions: muscle weakness, joint problems, pain, disease, and neurological difficulties. At times, several mild problems occur at once and combine to affect mobility more seriously.
There are many physical considerations to ponder concerning seniors who have mobility impairments. However, mental and emotional state of an individual should not be overlooked. Many seniors, particularly those who have fallen in the past, have mobility issues because they have a fear of falling, which can lead to inactivity and further complications. Senior caregivers should help address these fears in their senior patients or help them get the professional counseling they may need to overcome this fear. A cane or walker may provide additional support and confidence.
Sometimes older people are afraid they will not be able to get up from a fall. Thus, it is extremely helpful to learn how to get up from a fall before it occurs. In some cases, the older person may benefit from practicing techniques for getting up from the floor. A physical therapist can help with teaching a person how to do this. In addition, home safety checks are essential in correcting conditions that could lead to falls.
Furthermore, seniors should always be wearing proper footwear, even in their home. This not only helps prevent falls, but it can also make it much easier for seniors to safely maneuver on their own. Setting seniors up for success with changes such as this, instead of helping them too much, can assist in restoring their mobility and staying more active and independent.