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What Happens If Dad Is Determined to Walk, but Can’t?

Your father has long been a strong, independent individual. Lately, though, you know he’s having difficulty with his mobility. As a senior, you worry about his safety at home.

Senior Home Safety in Naples FL: Fall Risks

Senior Home Safety in Naples FL: Fall Risks

The problem is that he has been very limited in his mobility, whether it’s due to his age, diminished strength, or a health emergency. Perhaps he had a stroke recently and has essentially lost the use of one side of his body. That is certainly going to make it difficult for him to walk around.

However, he doesn’t seem willing to stop making the effort. Every time you go over there to visit with him, he tries to get out of the chair. He keeps admonishing you to leave him alone, that he can do it, but no matter how hard he tries, he’s only putting himself at increased risk of falling and getting hurt worse.

He may need more support.

He might be relying on your mother or some other family member or friend. A neighbor might come over to help him every once in a while. That can be fine for a while, but if he is having difficulty getting around and is determined to do whatever he can for himself, he’s probably putting himself at unnecessary risk.

Relying on a home care aide for a couple of hours a day to start may be exactly what he needs to help him realize he can still do a lot, if he only leaned on somebody for a little bit of help.

The risk of falling increases.

He needs to understand how devastating a fall can be. Some research indicates that the mortality rate for a senior over 65 increases by 4 percent every year over the age of 65. If your father is in his late 70s or somewhere in his 80s, the mortality rate within a year of a broken hip can be as high as 27 percent or more (Schnell et al). That’s one in four.

He should be encouraged to exercise.

If his doctor has recommended exercise or says it’s okay, your father should be encouraged to get at least some exercise. Getting exercise is the only way he’s going to strengthen those muscles in his legs and other parts of his body. Exercise is also highly beneficial at helping him strengthen his heart muscles.

Getting those exercises, though, can be challenging, especially with limited mobility. That’s where he can rely and lean on an experienced home care aide.

If you or an aging loved one are considering home care to improve senior home safety in Naples, FLplease contact the caring staff at Dial-a-Nurse Home Health Care at (239) 307-0033.

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Ted Wolfendale, Esq.

Administrator at Dial-a-Nurse
Mr. Wolfendale is a graduate of Stetson University, and Stetson University School of Law, and was admitted to the Florida Bar in 1988. He is admitted to practice in the Middle district of Florida, is an active member of the Florida Health Law section, and Lee County Bar Association.

In 1995 he became Administrator of Dial-a-Nurse nursing agency, the oldest nursing agency in the Southwest Florida succeeding his mother who started the company 37 years ago. He is also President of Nevco, Inc., an educational healthcare training company begun in 1988.

Mr. Wolfendale has worked with the U.S. Department of Commerce on various Missions to improve the quality of life around the world by development of supportive healthcare programs. In 2005 he traveled with U.S. officials and addressed the Italian National Government assisting in the creation of Nurse Education mandates for that Country. In 2006 he was invited and spoke with the National Institutes of Continuing Education in Eastern Europe on healthcare education and developmental mandates, and most recently represented the United States at the European Union in Lake Balaton, Hungary in 2011. In 2014 he traveled with the U.S. Department of State to Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam in an effort to improve caregiver knowledge and training.

Mr. Wolfendale has worked with a number of non-profits in contributing and creating curriculum to improve the quality of life in third-world countries since 2001, and notably created a successful program in Odessa, India that has been modeled in other areas of the world. In his backyard, he has worked with local Goodwill Industries to provide curriculum and training to underserved individuals who have obtained employment as a result of educational training. He was the Congressional appointment to the Governor's purple ribbon task force in 2013, and has worked to educate caregivers in all aspects of Alzheimer's training.

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