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Don’t Let a Fall Hold You Back

On the 10th Anniversary of National Falls Prevention Awareness Day, theYMCA of Pawtucket wants residents to learn the risk factors of falls

Pawtucket, RI (September 15, 2017) – September 22 is National Falls Prevention Awareness Day and the YMCA of Pawtucket is joining the National Council on Aging (NCOA) and the Falls Free Coalition for 10 Years Standing Together to Prevent Falls, a day of action to help raise awareness and prevention of falls in Rhode Island.

Each year, it’s estimated that one out of three Americans aged 65 or older will suffer a fall, leaving many of these adults with a fear of falling that can cause them to limit physical activities. This leads to reduced mobility and diminished quality of life, and actually increases their risk of falling. In addition, as the population ages falls put an immense strain on the health care system, with the financial toll expected to reach $67.7 billion by 2020. The good news is that falls are preventable. With a focus on healthy aging, the Y is committed to helping older adults learn their fall risk and access programs that can help them reduce their risk for falls.

“As a leading community-based organization dedicated to improving the nation’s health, the Y is asking older adults, caregivers, family members and health care professionals to raise awareness and prevent falls in the older adult population,” said Charlie Clifford, Chief Executive Officer of the YMCA of Pawtucket. “Falls are preventable, but many older adults and their families don’t know how to safely get active; the good news is that organizations like the Y can help.”

The first step to prevention is understanding risk. Older adults can assess their fall risk by taking a simple test at www.ymca.net/health-wb-fitness. Through this assessment, individuals can learn how routine activities and other factors help determine their risk for falls.

Once assessing risk, the next step is to take action. The YMCA of Pawtucket helping to improve the health and well-being of older adults across the state through fitness classes like Silver Sneakers Yoga and Classic classes, Zumba/Cardio Latin Beat classes and Strong and Flexible Seniors Classes plus personal training and a variety of sport options and pool based opportunities.

The CDC suggests these basic lifestyle and safety changes to help reduce risk or prevent falls:

  • Begin an exercise program to improve your leg strength & balance.
  • Ask your doctor or pharmacist to review your medicines.
  • Get annual eye check-ups & update your eyeglasses.
  • Make your home safer by:
    • Removing clutter & tripping hazards.
    • Putting railings on all stairs & adding grab bars in the bathroom.
    • Installing proper lighting, especially on stairs.

To learn more about the YMCA of Pawtucket, please visit www.ymcapawtucket.org.

About the Y

The Y is one of the nation’s leading nonprofits strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Across the U.S., 2,700 Ys engage 22 million men, women and children – regardless of age, income or background – to nurture the potential of children and teens, improve the nation’s health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support neighbors. Anchored in more than 10,000 communities, the Y has the long-standing relationships and physical presence not just to promise, but to deliver, lasting personal and social change. The YMCA of Pawtucket is comprised of five branches across the state: Pawtucket Family YMCA and Heritage Park YMCA Early Learning Center in Pawtucket, MacColl YMCA in Lincoln, Westwood YMCA in Coventry and Woonsocket YMCA.

 

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