9 Life-Saving Ways to Prevent Falling After Stroke

9 Life-Saving Ways to Prevent Falling After Stroke

Taking precautions to prevent falling after stroke is very important.

Falls can cause broken bones, increased disability, and even death. In fact, falling is the leading cause of accidental home deaths.

Furthermore, falls are a major reason for 40% of the admissions to nursing homes. Plus, stroke survivors are 3 times more likely to fall multiple times after stroke. Not good!

Luckily, there are many precautions you can take to prevent falling after stroke.

Let’s dig into these life-saving practices.

1. Work on Your Leg Mobility

Movement impairments are the most common stroke side effect, often affecting one side of the body.

This “lopsidedness” causes serious difficulties with walking and balance. As a result, it increases your risk of falling.

How to fix it:

Try doing leg rehab exercises to regain leg mobility.

Know that rehab exercise is about retraining the brain and less about strengthening the legs (although strength is important too!).

The more you repeat your leg exercises, the better your coordination will become because repetition is the best treatment for stroke.

2. Improve Balance by Strengthening Your Core

As you start to improve your leg mobility, don’t stop there! Walking uses a combination of all sorts of muscles, like your feet, arms, legs, and especially your core.

Your abdominal muscles are responsible for “holding you together” and greatly improve your balance.

How to fix it:

Add some core rehab exercise to your regimen.

3. Manage Foot Drop the Right Way

A stroke side effect called foot drop can cause difficulty lifting the front part of your foot.

This greatly increases your risk of tripping and falling after stroke.

There are two ways to treat foot drop. One is more effective than the other, but both are essential for your safety.

How to fix it:

The first way to fix foot drop is with an AFO, which is like a brace that holds your foot in place.

An AFO can greatly increase your safety and help prevent falls. However, it’s not the best long-term solution.

An AFO is a compensation technique that doesn’t help you regain movement in your foot.

A better treatment involves adding foot drop exercises to your regimen. This will help retrain your brain and improve movement in your foot long-term.

Through repetitive practice, you can get rid of your foot drop for good.

So use your AFO during your activities of daily living to improve your safety, and be sure to keep doing your foot drop exercises to regain your independence.

4. Simplify and Speed Up Your Rehab Regimen

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by all of these new exercises, don’t sweat it. Our home therapy device, FitMi, includes 40 different rehab exercises for your feet, legs, core, arm, and hands.

Plus, it encourages you to accomplish 12x more repetition than regular therapy. This helps you improve movement and increase your safety faster than normal.

You can read our customer success stories to hear about the amazing results that FitMi has helped others achieve!

5. Make Sure Your Vision Is Okay

Sometimes stroke affects your vision.

In these cases, you can develop a condition known as field cuts where you can’t see a portion of your environment.

This increases your risk of falling because you can’t clearly navigate your environment.

How to fix it:

Participate in vision restoration therapy.

6. Work on Your Awareness/Concentration

A condition known as one-sided neglect means that a stroke survivor cannot recognize half of their environment.

For example, a stroke survivor with one-side neglect on their left side might run into a table on their left side because they simply didn’t notice it.

Not because they didn’t see it, but because they didn’t notice it.

Read: How to Tell the Difference Between Field Cuts and One-Sided Neglect After Stroke

How to fix it:

You can retrain your brain to notice your affected side by turning to your affected side frequently.

The more you practice paying attention to your affected side, the better you will get at it.

Again, repetition is the best treatment for stroke.

7. Adapt Your Home

When you return home after stroke, someone usually comes to inspect your home and recommend ways to increase the safety of your home.

They will probably recommend things like installing grab bars in the bathroom – the most common place for falls! – and removing rugs or other hazardous items.

It’s important to do a thorough inspection of your home to remove anything that could potentially cause a fall!

8. Know When to Use Your Walking Aids

If you have movement impairments, it’s likely that your therapist recommended a cane or walker.

Please use this equipment when you need it! There’s no pride in going without your cane when you need it and falling as a result.

With that said, try your best to remain curious about your potential and don’t settle for compensation over recovery.

Meaning, keep doing your rehab exercises repetitively and consistently to regain your ability to walk independently.

In the meantime, use your cane or walker. But stay focused on your ultimate goal: to walk independently without the assistance from rehab equipment.

9. Go Slow and Don’t Rush

Stroke recovery often forces stroke survivors to slow down – for good reason.

If you try to rush around and do too many things at once, you greatly increase your risk of falling.

Never hesitate to slow down or ask for help.

And there you have it! By following these 9 steps to prevent falling after stroke, you will greatly improve your safety and wellbeing.

What steps have you taken to prevent falls after stroke? Share your story with us in the comments below!