With summer approaching, the last day of school will be here soon. As the family home increases with foot traffic and other activities, there increases the risk of preventable injuries. The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons offers helpful tips for creating a safer home environment, thereby reducing accidents that may lead to physical therapy and orthopaedic care.
Among the AAOS’s recommendations for home safety are five simple steps designed to keep your joints and bones in good condition.
Utilize Safety Equipment At Home
It isn’t necessary to spend thousands on a home renovation. Depending on your home, increasing safety may be as easy as turning problem areas slip-proof. Bathrooms and kitchens in particular are common rooms for accidents. Place slip-proof mats on the floor and be mindful of water spills. If you have stairs, make sure the railings are secure and easy to grasp for support. Use slip-resistant stickers on the tub and shower floor.
Carry That Weight, Properly
Many household chores require lifting. Whether you’re carrying in groceries from the car or moving boxes in and out of storage, you should be mindful of the stress it puts on your knees and back. Taking on more weight than you can handle ups the risk for neck and shoulder pain. Lift with your knees to take the stress off your back, and don’t twist your body.
Take 30 To Exercise
A half-hour daily to exercise does wonders for your joint and bone health. Movement keeps the joints lubricated, and in turn helps reduce chronic pain. Take time first to warm up with stretching or light walking before you go into your workout. Swimming, aerobics, yoga, weights, and active housework are just some of the ways you can keep fit at home.
Get Some Vitamin D
Also known as the “sunshine vitamin,” Vitamin D is essential for strong bones. It helps our bodies absorb calcium and is good for muscle strength, too. If you feel you may be Vitamin D deficient, spend some time outdoors or ask your doctor about the right supplements to up your intake.
See Your Doctor When You Hurt
When your arthritis or joint pain acts up, don’t let it fester. Consult with your orthopaedic physician for treatments designed to reduce your pain and improve your quality of life. When you maintain an active interest in your health, you are able to discern a minor problem from a major one, and act quickly before surgery is needed to correct your joint pain.