Staying Safe and Mobile in Your Elderly Years

canes and walking sticksWhile most people do not look forward to getting older, unfortunately aging is inevitable. Many people become stubborn when it comes to asking for help or admitting they are in need, but it is important to be as safe as possible as you move into your elderly years.Canes and walking sticks may be the perfect solution to assisting your elderly life. Every year, over two million senior citizens visit the emergency room for injuries caused by a fall. Canes and walking sticks are an important appendix to any senior citizen’s livelihood. Even if you do not think you may need an assistive mobility device in your life quite yet, it is a good idea to purchase one in anticipation if you ever begin to feel unstable in your daily life. Among older adults, over 50% of all falls take place at home, and you want to feel the most safe in your own home, especially if you are alone.

If you are the more fashion forward individual and are worried about a cane or walking stick cramping your style, there are many designer walking canes that may be the perfect fit for you. 4.8 million Americans (70% of mobility device users) walk with a cane, making canes the most widely used mobility devices in the U.S. If that high a percentage of our population are using canes and walking sticks, there is no need to feel ashamed and you can most certainly find one that is perfect for you. Ranging from plastic to wood, and from extremely affordable to very high end, there is practically an unlimited range of selection for picking the right cane or walking stick for your personal style. There are even many businesses that will create custom walking canes if that is what you prefer, making you more unique and stylish than any other elder out there.

Aside from aesthetic, it is also important to find the right type of cane or walking stick that fits with your personal health needs. There are four main types of canes on the market, all serving a slightly different purpose for your walking needs. The four styles are a crook cane, a center balance cane, a parrot head cane, and a quad cane. Crook canes, being the most popular out there today, have a curved handle making it very easy to grip. These canes are fairly inexpensive and are ideal for travel and simplicity, being the most generic cane or walking stick. Center balance canes are more appropriate for individuals who have a much harder time walking and keeping their balance. Individuals who suffer from diseases such as Parkinson’s or Multiple Sclerosis will often use this type of cane. Parrot head canes are less supportive and more of decorative walking canes. This cane may be appropriate for someone who is not in much need of balance, but is looking to be more stylish. Finally, a quad cane is the most supportive cane out there, even more so than the center balance cane. These canes have three or four feet on the bottom of the stick, giving you the most walking support possible before needing a walker. If you are unsure which cane or walking stick would be the most appropriate for your needs, have a conversation with your health care provider.

One in four older adults falls every year in the United States. Do not let yourself be one of those four. If your health or balance begin to waiver at all, do not let your pride get the best of you. Get ahead of your health and look into purchasing assistive mobility devices such as canes and walking sticks before you become a statistic of one of the elderly being injured or treated for a falling accident.