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Putting Balance in your Life: June 10, 2011

Slip and falls might be funny in the movies, but in realty they often have life threatening consequences. In Lee county more elderly people die as a result of a fall than in a car crash.

Putting balance in your life. It’s something Brandie Redman helps patients do on a daily basis.

“The common myth that you know I'm older I'm supposed to be off-balance, I'm supposed to have falls and that's not true,” says Redman. 

“There's a lot of things you can do. We do a lot of work of having you stand on and even surfaces that move. We do stuff with eyes, your eyes open, your eyes closed. We have you work on standing on one leg at a time. Because that's essentially what walking is,” Redman says.

Marvin Borycki says it made a difference with his wife, who is now falling less after therapy.

“I tell her you got a take long steps, you got a stride like Brandie always says,” Borycki says.

Walking is one of the best things you can do for yourself. Not just around the house, but outside on different surfaces. exercises are great too and they don’t have to be strenuous.

“Yoga, tai chi, any of those activities that focus on balance will also help you with your strength and your balances that you can decrease your fall risk,” Redman says.

A balance screening could be your first step in assessing your risk. 

“There are standardized tests so there is a set pass or fail,” Redman says.  “If you fail five, six or seven different tests that is something we start recommending therapy for.”

Lee Memorial Health System offers free, monthly Balance Screenings: