Falls

I fell over this morning on my walk. Not sure why I fell but went down like a log, bumped my head, scraped my nose, knee, elbow and wrist. Some man helped me up and followed me home to make sure I was ok. Have been feeling very shaky and shocked but had a drink and something to eat and am feeling better. There is a connection between falls and T2 and the elderly. Guess I have to class myself as elderly now! Does anyone know anything about the falls thing? I am feeling very silly.

I am prone to falls because I was born uncoordinated, LOL, and also because I have some inner ear damage from taking Wellbutrin as an antidepressant. It wasn't even listed as a side effect, but my psychiatrist made a report. I know it was that because I started having tinnitus when I started the Wellbutrin, and it stopped when I stopped the drug, but by then, the damage had been done. And it's not related to age, or to diabetes.

So I've developed techniques for preventing falls. First off, if I'm going up or down stairs, I use the bannister, and if there are two, I use them both, and look at my feet to make sure they're properly placed. I also look at my feet when I walk -- uneven ground, and unexpected obstacles make falling more likely. I know that exercise gurus tell you to walk briskly with your head up, but they're young, and don't have balance problems. I also walk more slowly than I COULD walk, because it gives me more time to scope out potential fall risks.

I'm also really careful in the bathroom -- I have things I can grab onto while getting in and out of the shower, and I have a shower chair -- if I want to wash my feet (and I occasionally do, LOL!), I can't stand on one foot in the shower, grabbing onto the neighboring sink, and still manage to wash one foot with one hand!

If I want to walk briskly with my head up, there's always a treadmill with bars for both hands, but walking in real life involves care, because falling is just not worth it!

I have bad knees, and a bad back, so I can get wobbly at times too... I just know I have to be careful all the time.

Because I too have inner ear problems I am prone to unsteadiness and am usually careful. I think I was inattentive this morning but I did not trip over anything, there was nothing to trip over! Most certainly, Natalie, falling over outside is not worth it, I have very sore grazes, oh that I was 4 yo and could get over this more quickly. Thanks, Natalie.

Glad you're fine & a gentleman made sure you were ok.

Balance exercises are really helpful. Very easy to do.

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/balance-exercises/SM00049
http://www.exercise4weightloss.com/balance-exercises.html
http://physicaltherapy.about.com/od/balanceexercises/a/Balanceact.htm

Thanks Gerri. I have been doing tai chi for nearly 20 years now, which includes balance exercise. I have booked in to see the dr. tomorrow morning, I don't think it was just loss of balance, I certainly did not trip. There is a link between T2 and falls in the elderly, Metformin (which I take) is not a medication that causes falls, but some alpha blockers can cause falls. I don't think my dose of these is enough to cause a fall. Maureen, who has a lovely black eye!

Sorry, didn't know you're a Tai Chi veteran. My mother, much older than you, falls frequently. Not her balance or tripping over anything. She just goes down. Forunately, she's never gotten injured. I think it's her BP because it's quite variable. A black eye:(

Yes, Gerri, that is how I fell, just went down straight, right onto my nose. I have a real shiner, think it was where my glasses were shoved onto my face. I was over halfway through my walk, felt fine and just went down. Really odd, that is why I booked to see the dr. My medication might just need changing. If you get up quickly when you are taking blood pressure medication you can fall, more faint. Is your mother a quick mover?

She walks at brisk pace. She's always been walking, moving when she's fallen. Like you, she's fine right before. She takes BP meds only every two days & if her BP is high.

If I get an answer from the dr. I'll let you know, I probably should have taken my bp right after the fall, but I wanted to shower and clean my wounds and still haven't done it. Didn't really think. You are warned when on bp medication to get up, sit on the side of the bed for a moment or two before moving, or getting up from a chair. But that doesn't seem to be the case with your mother and me.

Thanks for letting me know. Hope it's nothing, but helpful to have an answer. My mother's doc has been useless on this front. He lowered her BP dose, but she fell the other day in the house. I don't know what BP med she's on. Strange not to experience feeling faint or dizzy before.

The only other med she takes is Armour thyroid replacement.

I suggested she have adrenal function tested because adrenal insuffiency is linked to wacky BP. Most telling is low BP when standing & high BP when lying down. Since people test BP when sitting, they don't know.

I have had a couple of serious falls in the last couple of years. I am in my 60's. Didn't know there was a connection. Hope someone has some good info out there.

I googled it and came up with a connection, Johanna. They say it is not related to Metformin, but might be beta blockers or a combination of drugs. Be careful! It really isn't a pleasant occupation, is it? This falling thing.

and I'm on a beta blocker, too. Must be more careful (but that doesn't always make a difference does it?).

I suspect I was 'out' for a second or so, Johanna, as I didn't even put my hands out to save myself. I certainly didn't trip.

In the last 3 years, I have fallen IN the porch once and IN the kitchen door once. This last fall, I hit the refrigerator with my head and right shoulder. This hit resulted in a tendon being torn completely off and I had to have surgery later.

I had my 70th birthday last year, but I don't think age had anything to do with the fall. I have arthritis in my knees, my left being the worse. Both falls, I was stepping on the last step with my left foot. Hurrying to take the weight off, I didn't fully extend the knee thus catching my toe on the edge of the top step.

I finally learned correct this and haven't fallen IN again. Hopefully I don't fall down the steps now.

Some medications can cause you to fall. BP for one. Take care.
Yvonne