Cynthia Schuetz: One fall can change it all
KNOW & GO
What: Falls Prevention Coalition’s ninth annual community event
When: 9 a.m.-1 p.m., Sept. 21
Where: Seventh-day Adventist Church, 12889 Osborne Hill Rd., Grass Valley
Info: 530-271-0255, RSVP by Sept. 16
Stay active! Stay strong! Stay safe! That’s what the focus will be at the Falls Prevention Coalition’s ninth annual community event from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sept. 21. The Coalition invites people 50 and over, adult children and caregivers to come to this free event.
After 10 years of educating people about how to reduce their risk of falling, here’s what we know: one fall can change it all! We hear stories all the time about how life changing a fall can be. And we know that most people think it can’t happen to them. “I’m careful” is a common refrain, as if everyone who falls isn’t. We can be careful as all get-out, but our risk of falling increases if our strength and sense of balance decreases … or if we don’t have grab bars in our shower or tub … or don’t have enough light in our home … or take medications that make us dizzy … or we continue to get on a ladder to clean out the gutters … and the list goes on.
The good news is that we can address all these risk factors if we’re willing to make some changes. We know, for instance, that the bathroom is the most dangerous place in our home, but if we do something as simple as install grab bars, we can reduce that danger.
Even more important, building up and maintaining our strength and balance can make a world of difference.
We also know that falling doesn’t just happen to seniors. In Nevada County in 2014 alone, more than 1,000 people, 65 and over, went to the emergency department due to a fall. But another 513 people age 50 to 64 had a fall injury that led to a visit to the ER.
The event in September will provide people with loads of good information. The program will again include keynote presenter Dr. Debbie Rose, a renowned speaker and internationally known expert in falls risk reduction; Debbie’s presentation was one of the most popular events last year. Local fitness experts also will share their approaches to staying active, strong and safe. A fun skit will take a look across the decades at twins who, shall we say, have different views about falls prevention. And, for your musical enjoyment, the Forever Young Senior Chorus (average age 75) will sing.
Over 25 vendors will have booths at the resource fair (they always bring great door prizes). Morning coffee and pastries from Sierra Mountain Coffee Roasters and a brown bag lunch, courtesy of Atria Senior Living will be available … all at no charge, though donations are always welcome.
We’re holding the event at the Seventh-day Adventist Church, 12889 Osborne Hill Rd., Grass Valley (off Highway 174, close to Union Hill School). You need to register by Friday, Sept. 16, so we can reserve your choice of sandwich. Call to RSVP at 530-271-0255.
Taking action is your choice. We hope your first choice will be to come and learn about what you can do to stay active and independent.
Making some simple changes can help maintain, and even improve, your quality of life. Why not start now?
Cynthia Schuetz is the coordinator of the Falls Prevention Coalition of Nevada County.
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Is that how I wanted to spend my birthday? Yes and no. The original plan was to take a weekend trip to the coast for a few days of relaxation.