An ounce of prevention…

Until six months ago, Doreen Wilson was still going strong

Until six months ago, Doreen Wilson was still going strong, working at her son’s fruit and vegetable farm. “I did all the flowers, a lot of the raking, sweeping and cleaning,” the 89-year-old says proudly.

And then she fell. Not once, but twice.

The first fall resulted in no injury, so she went back to her regular routine.

“Two months later I was getting back to normal, doing some housework, dusting, and all of a sudden my foot went out from under me and I went down,” Wilson recalled.

A pair of old slippers was the culprit. And this time, she broke the femur in her left leg. The great-grandmother now has three pins in her hip and a metal rod in her leg.

“I’m a bionic woman now,” she said from her hospital bed, where she’s spent the past two months undergoing rehab and getting falls prevention education and support.

To coincide with national Falls Prevention Week Nov. 2 to 8, this year, the BC Falls and Injury Prevention Coalition (BCFIPC) is launched a month-long public awareness campaign in November for falls prevention in the community.

“Doreen’s situation is one that is common among many seniors and with winter approaching, there is an increased risk of losing footing and falling, which raises the risk of injuries that can limit independence,” said Darryl Plecas, parliamentary secretary for seniors.

“Many falls are preventable and I encourage older British Columbians and their families to learn more about falls prevention.”

Falls are the leading cause of injury-related deaths and hospitalizations for seniors in British Columbia, said Heather Fudge, Island Health’s clinical nurse specialist, seniors and spiritual health.

“That’s why we work so hard to identify patients in our facilities who are at risk. We want to make sure we follow best practice to avoid falls,” Fudge said. “But what’s also important is continuing that education in the community so that seniors don’t fall in the first place. Forty per cent of admissions to residential care facilities are because the senior has fallen, suffered a major fracture and is no longer able to stay at home, usually due to mobility issues.”

Fudge says small things can make a big difference for seniors when it comes to preventing falls: stay physically active, make your home safer, get your medications reviewed, get your eyes checked once a year.

Wilson considers herself proactive when it comes to falls prevention, but there is one thing she plans to do when she gets home.

“I had slippers that were old and had lost their tread,” she said. “So that means I better smarten up and buy myself some good slippers.”

More info: findingbalancebc.ca or www.viha.ca/seniors/safety/falls.htm for more information.

Submitted by the Vancouver Island Health Authority

Just Posted

World’s largest hockey stick getting new lights

New lighting system can change colours and patterns

VIDEO: Strong cast tells the story of how justice solves all problems in ‘Measure for Measure’

Plenty of passion with dollops of comedy to leaven the story as Shakespeare Festival continues

Sarah Simpson Column: Good deeds save the day

Is it fair to call it the dog days of summer? I… Continue reading

Driver airlifted after head-on crash on TCH in Duncan Friday

Two people were seriously injured in a head-on crash on the TCH in Duncan yesterday night.

Join the fun at Rotary’s Ogilvie memorial golf tournament Aug. 23

Besides golfing with friends, you are helping fund worthwhile programs

VIDEO: Langley Ribfest met with protesters

Groups that oppose the event for various reasons plan to be on site each of the three days.

Canadians killed in Afghanistan honoured during emotional dedication ceremony

One-hundred-fifty-eight Canadian soldiers died during the mission

It’s snow joke: Up to 30 cm of snow expected to fall in northeastern B.C.

Alaska Highway, Fort Nelson to be hit with August snowstorm, according to Environment Canada

‘I’m just absolutely disgusted’: Husband furious after B.C. Mountie’s killer gets day parole

Kenneth Fenton was sentenced to prison after he fatally struck Const. Sarah Beckett’s cruiser

Sea-to-Sky Gondola in B.C. likely out of commission until 2020

Sea to Sky Gondola carries between 1,500 and 3,000 people every day during the summer season

Helicopter-riding dog Mr. Bentley now featured on cans of new B.C.-made beer

Partial proceeds from every pack go to Children’s Wish

PHOTOS: Weapons seized at Portland right-wing rally, counterprotests

Not all who gathered Saturday were with right-wing groups or antifa

Ferries employees participating in Denman Island cleanup for plastic-shedding ferry

The cleanup comes a few weeks after one organized by residents of the Island

Discussion on grief and loss between Stephen Colbert, Anderson Cooper goes viral

The exchange includes emotional question from Cooper, and outlook on grief as a child

Most Read