Friday, November 20, 2015

Falling Friday - Were These boots Made for Walking?

Shoes.  Fashion.  They make you feel good.  They decorate you.  They give you confidence.
Nice boots
But the ones you think are the safest can cause falls.

My mother in law learned this the hard way on Saturday.  I haven't been blogging much about the care giving portion of my life but it has been an interesting last month or so.  My mother in law was hospitalized in October for what turned out to be pneumonia and a small blood clot - and then has been in rehab for all of November.

Saturday, she fell in the hallway of the facility.

She said her shoes caught on the carpet.  She fell backwards.  Fortunately, at the ER, everything checked out.  Thankfully.  This time.

My mother in law is right - the wrong shoes can cause falls.

At the falls prevention class I attended from May to July of this year, they gave examples of shoes the elderly should not wear, and invited us to bring shoes in that we weren't sure of. 

What kind of shoes did not pass muster?

House shoes.  Shoes with smooth plastic or leather soles.  Worn out shoes. Shoes that don't give support (I had a fun time shopping for boots for her yesterday - some have absolutely no support whatsoever).  Slip on shoes (they are less adjustable than shoes with laces).

Here is some more advice on shoes that may help the elderly.

Now that I will be partially responsible for my mother in law's shoe shopping (along with other family members) I will need to take this advice to heart. 

My mother in law needs a pair of boots for the winter.  Sitting in rehab, she picked out a pair of boots she wanted from a footwear catalog - nice looking with 1 1/2 inch heels. Boots are important where we live in upstate New York, on the edge of the snowbelt.  We easily have 80 inches (2.03 meters) or more of snow in a winter.

But the description, unlike some other boots in the catalog, did not describe the soles as having "traction".  So I picked out, from a local store, the boots I took a picture of, above.  You can't see it, but they have good support and also good treads on the soles.

But now I'm not so sure.  My mother in law enjoys wearing nice clothes.  I don't want to deprive her of that.  But I don't want her to fall again, either.  My spouse will take them to her today and have her try them on.  We'll go from there.

Do you have any experiences of buying shoes for seniors to share?

Today is day 20 of NaBloPoMo, National Blog Posting Month.


  1. After my fall in 2007 I ultimately had a garage sale and sold lots of shoes. I was wearing boots when I fell both in 2007 and 1968. Now I am very conscious of footwear. Writing about falling is on my 'to blog' list.

  2. Oh how I would love to still be able to boots with high killer heels..actually, I'd love to wear boots or shoes with any kind of heel. I have fallen. I have new knees. I can move and twist and kneel and I never want to fall again. For once the vanity is not worth the risk.

  3. It could be worse. She could have hard to fit feet. Of course, it seems like shoes that are in those hard to fit sizes tend to be a bit more substantial. Most of the time, anyway.

  4. I recall some of the shoes I use to wear, 3 inch or more spiked heels. Now they scary me and I'm afraid to wear them, thinking I'll break my neck.
    Coffee is on

  5. One has to be very careful. All the best, hope she likes them.


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