Silver Cross Hospital

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Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago at Silver Cross offers Free Fall & Balance Screenings in October 

(September 26, 2016)—Carolyn Larkin had difficulty balancing after having a cochlear implant inserted to help her hear. Her situation became worse as she struggled to walk a straight line due to her weak ankles as a result of not getting physical therapy after her bunion surgery.

“I’m so glad that I had a fall and balance screening with RIC at Silver Cross because it was determined that I needed to have therapy to walk safer,” said Larkin of Shorewood. “Now after three weeks of therapy, I have learned the exercises that have made my legs and feet stronger. I’m so grateful to my therapist, Matt, who was so attentive and knowledgeable. I now have the ability to walk without fear of falling.”

According to the National Council on Aging, every 15 seconds an older adult is seen in an emergency room for a fall-related injury. To help reduce preventable falls, The Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago at Silver Cross is offering free Fall and Balance screenings on Wednesday, Oct. 5 and 12. The screenings will be held in The Silver Cross Professional Building, 1051 Essington Rd., Joliet and includes blood pressure readings, balance assessment, recommendations referrals for treatment if needed.  To schedule an appointment, call (815) 300-6580. 

“Since falling is the leading cause of injury and deaths among people over the age of 65 and the leading cause of doctor visits, hospital admissions, and emergency room visits, it is important to determine if you are at risk,” says Matt DeGraff, Senior Physical Therapist for the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago at Silver Cross Hospital.

“Individuals who have been experiencing dizziness or vertigo, have had a history of falls, near falls, or simply a fear of falling are excellent candidates for a balance screening,” said Matthew Boebel, Administrative Director for the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago at Silver Cross Hospital. “It is so important to get screened because these falls can cause moderate to severe injuries, such as hip fractures and head traumas, and can increase the risk of early death.”

How can you prevent falls?

Stay independent and reduce your chances of falling by doing the following:

•  Exercise regularly. It is important that the exercises focus on increasing leg strength and improving balance. Tai Chi programs are especially good.

•  Ask doctor or pharmacist to review medicines—both prescription and over-the counter—to identify medicines that may cause side effects or interactions such as dizziness or drowsiness.

•  Have eyes checked by an eye doctor at least once a year and update eyeglasses to maximize vision.  Consider getting a pair with single vision distance lenses for some activities such as walking outside.

•  Make your home safer by reducing tripping hazards such as throw rugs, adding grab bars inside and outside the tub or shower and next to the toilet, adding railings on both sides of stairways, and improving the lighting in your homes.

 

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Physicians on Silver Cross Hospital’s Medical Staff have expertise in their areas of practice to meet the needs of patients seeking their care.  These physicians are independent practitioners on the Medical Staff and are not the agents or employees of Silver Cross Hospital. They treat patients based upon their independent medical judgment and they bill patients separately for their services.