Winter is here. Unfortunately, that means the slip and fall season is here too. You might not realize this, but your risk of experiencing a slip and fall accident increases dramatically during the winter. That's because you're dealing with all that ice and snow. If you suffer from osteoporosis, your risk of fractures increases too. If you suffer from osteoporosis, it's important that you take steps to safeguard yourself against slip and fall accidents this winter. Here are just four methods you can use to protect yourself, and your bones, this winter.
Keep Your Sidewalks and Driveway Clear
During the winter, many slip and fall accidents occur right in a persons yard, especially on their sidewalks and driveways. To help you avoid falling in your yard, it's important that you keep your sidewalks and driveway clear. If you're unable to clear the ice and snow from your sidewalks and driveway, be sure to have someone come in and do that for you. Daily scraping and salt applications can help reduce the risk of slip and fall accidents.
Decrease the Size of Your Steps
When there's ice and snow on the ground, you should adjust the size of the steps you take. Taking normal-sized steps can decrease your stability, and put you at risk for slip and fall accidents. Instead, decrease the size of your step so that you have more control over your footing. If you've ever watched a penguin walk, that's how you should be walking when there's ice and snow on the ground, especially if you have osteoporosis. The penguin walk will help you keep your balance, and reduce the amount of slip you experience when walking on ice and snow.
Wear the Proper Footwear
Now that winter is here, it's time to put your fair-weather footwear away. Smooth-soled shoes are fine for spring and summer, but when the weather turns icy, it's time to wear shoes with better traction. You can increase the stability of your steps, and decrease your chance of slipping and falling in the winter weather, by wearing boots and shoes specially designed to provide traction in the snow and ice. Not only that, but wearing boots during the winter will help stabilize your ankles so that you avoid injuries from unexpected twists.
Stretch Your Muscles and Joints Before Heading Outside
You might not think much about this, but if you're heading out into the cold, you should stretch your muscles and joints first. Heading out into the cold with tight muscles and joints puts you at a greater risk for injuries. Spend a few minutes doing some light stretches before you go outside during the winter.
Don't take chances this winter. Use the simple methods described here to prevent osteoporotic fractures. Talk to your doctor about other ways to protect your bones this winter.