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The surprising 1-step solution to avoid breaking your hip

Posted Jun 28 2010 5:46am


“She fell and broke her hip, and was never the same after that.”

 

Bet you dollars to doughnuts you can fill in a name and face for that sentence above.

 

Falls are such a common problem as we age that they seem inevitable. But now some researchers out of Australia say they know what’s contributing to many of those falls. And the solution is astonishingly simple.

 

Change your glasses.

 

The study, published in the British Medical Journal, looked at 606 subjects who were at high risk for falls either because they were 80+ or they were 65+ with a history of falls. All of the volunteers used multifocal glasses at least three times a week when walking outside and did not use single lens distance glasses.

 

About half of the group was given a pair of single-lens glasses to wear when they were outside or in an unfamiliar setting.

 

Both groups were then monitored for 13 months. During that time total falls were decreased by 8% in the single-lens group. But even more exciting was that those seniors in the single-lens group who were active—going outdoors on a regular basis—saw their total falls plummet by 40%! And the tumbles they did take were less harmful.

 

Multifocal glasses are great for activities like driving, reading, or cooking. But they have optical defects that can cause you to feel off balance when walking or moving around in an unfamiliar place causing you to fall. So it’s better to switch to a single-lens pair for outdoor activities.

 

They say failure is not falling down but refusing to get up. I say success is avoiding the fall in the first place.

 

Seeing more clearly now,

 

Alice Wessendorf

 

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