At Nightingale Homecare, we work with seniors each day to help increase their strength and balance to prevent falls, and recently shared a blog post with some of our favorite senior-steadying tips. One of the most prevalent and frightening risks associated with senior falls is broken bones and fractures, and these are a particular concern for the millions of seniors worldwide diagnosed with osteoporosis.
So in addition to helping prevent falls, we’d like to share some tips for seniors to strengthen their bones, which provides more than just protection against fractures or breaks in the event of a fall – stronger bones equal stronger bodies, allowing seniors to enhance their quality of life and wellbeing.
- Supercharge the senior’s diet: In particular, ensuring an adequate supply of both calcium and vitamin D is imperative to protect and strengthen fragile senior bones. Author Christine Gerbstadt, MD, recommends 1,200 mg of calcium for women and 1,000 for men, which should be obtainable by consuming 2-3 servings of dairy products each day, along with plenty of leafy greens. Vitamin D can be boosted through supplements, for a recommended 600 to 800 international units each day.
- Emphasize exercise: Research has shown that bone mineral content can be increased simply through activities like walking and climbing stairs – any type of weight-bearing activity – each day for at least 30 minutes. If this level of exercise seems daunting for your senior loved one, try adding in simple strength-training activities according to his or her ability. And, always check with the senior’s doctor first before beginning or changing any exercise regimen.
- Arrange for an appointment: All seniors should receive bone density scans, also known as DEXA scans or dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry, to check for bone mass loss. This is especially important for women in the first few years post-menopause, when bone mass can begin to decrease. If osteoporosis is detected, there are medications available that can help.
To learn more about how our Phoenix senior care services can help your loved ones enhance their health, maximize their independence, and bring a renewed sense of purpose and joy to life, call Nightingale Homecare at 602-504-1555.
Our in-home care services for seniors range from supportive care, such as help with meals, shopping, and housekeeping, to medical home health care, including IV services, ventilator and oxygen care, wound care, blood draws, and more. A customized plan of care is created for each senior by a registered nurse case manager, who will monitor the plan and adjust regularly as needs change. Contact us today to arrange for an in-home consultation; we’d love the opportunity to meet you and to begin to make life brighter for a special senior in your life!