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Drat--I feel this morning on ice.
BillBRNC
Posted: Saturday, December 10, 2016 10:49 AM
Joined: 12/2/2015
Posts: 1018


I feel in the parking lot on black ice and hit my head real good, but thankfully didn't black out. Doc was scared and crawled all over me. Wife out of town this weekend, but I called her to see if she though I should do anything about being seen. She is a doctor. She asked questions, then said I should just stay home unless certain symptoms crop up, which they haven't. She also insisted that our son check on me and have dinner with me. What a bummer to put everyone on alert. I'm fine, but I have fallen a few times due to the Parkinson side of my Dementia with Lewy Bodies, so any fall worries me a little. Headache gone, while going for walk with Doc. I figured a slow walk in the cold weather would be good and nice, and it was. I guess I've been a little down lately, but I appreciate all the uplifting comments, and I am doing much better except for my head. Enjoy the cold weather if you have it, because it is really cold.
Michael Ellenbogen
Posted: Saturday, December 10, 2016 10:53 AM
Joined: 11/30/2011
Posts: 4460


 I am glad you are alright but make sure you are observed by someone else as we don’t always know to see all of the issues.

 


jfkoc
Posted: Saturday, December 10, 2016 11:16 AM
Joined: 12/4/2011
Posts: 21242


oh, no! Are you doing balance exercises????
Iris L.
Posted: Saturday, December 10, 2016 12:18 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18508


I'm so glad you feel all right, Bill.  But head injuries are something that may not show signs immediately.  Keep an eye for the headache coming back.  Also observe for any symptoms such as blurred vision or nausea and vomiting.  You have your emergency button on your telephone, don't you, in case you need it.  


I would suggest that you stay home until your wife returns.  You will probably be just fine, but it is best to be cautious.


Since you have Parkinson's and your gait will be affected, seek out any type of physical therapy that can help you with that, because you will always be at risk for falls.  I believe jfkoc posted on this board about a boxing class for people with Parkinson's to help with balance.


Discuss with the prescribing doctor the use of any blood thinners that you might be on, because they can be dangerous in a person who is at risk for falls.


You might think about wearing a thickly knitted cap when you go out.  I would suggest a helmet, but I don't think you would go for that.    


Here is an article on concussions.  You might want to take a look at it, or have your son take a look at it, so he will know what to observe for.

http://my.clevelandclinic.org/services/concussion-center/hic-concussions


Please let us know how you are doing, Bill.


Iris L.

 


BillBRNC
Posted: Saturday, December 10, 2016 1:07 PM
Joined: 12/2/2015
Posts: 1018


Wow, I had not expected all these responses, so many thanks. I was just getting ready to read about head knocks. Michael, you are right as rain as they say. There was nobody around and not likely to be for some time. Yes, I'm looking a lot at the balance, tripping, arms not swinging, stiff leg muscles in the morning, and that other good stuff. I'm fairly certain that I have been having mild Parkinson stuff for a couple months at least. My wife is going to make me go to a neuro about this, but keep putting her off. I just hope it doesn't get worse for a few years. When I turn, I tend to lose a little balance, same for getting up and walking. I don't know about the arm moving thing. When I don't think about it, I realize my arms stay almost straight at my side, no swinging. When I think about it, I can swing my arms, so I don't know what that means, hope something good. I also need to remove rugs from our floors. It would be nice if the city would smooth out the cracks and high spots on sidewalks and sides of road, but I know that won't happen. I just hope most of this is in my mind, as I've been worrying some lately. Well, my son will be coming over in a few hours to check on me, as my wife called him. I seem to be doing fine, except for a bit of headache and some stiff neck, and some embarrassment. Suns out and warming up to around 25. Ice on the lakes now. Nice to see the swans on the big lake try to walk on the ice.
BillBRNC
Posted: Saturday, December 10, 2016 1:28 PM
Joined: 12/2/2015
Posts: 1018


jfkoc wrote:
oh, no! Are you doing balance exercises????
 
I had to look this up to see what is involved. Interestingly, I used to be a 4th degree black belt in Karate, and I competed in light contact sparring around the country. I had to quit about 15 years ago due to too many knee surgeries and breaking ribs all the time. But it was great for balance. I used to be able to jump up into the air, turn 360 degrees, and kick and break 3 or 4 inches of wood...not too bad for an older fellow. I would have never fallen on the ice, even if I slipped, in the old days. But of course I wouldn't have slipped either. I have always had really good balance and body control, but I guess those days are over. I'll be looking further at the balance exercises, but I have to watch out for my knees because I don't need any more knee surgeries or put any additional wear on them. There seems to be a price to pay for almost everything that a person enjoys doing. Anyway, my wife will probably call every hour to check on me, not late I night I hope though.


julielarson
Posted: Saturday, December 10, 2016 1:41 PM
Joined: 9/30/2015
Posts: 1155


Bill, keeping you in my thoughts.. I will say Reiki for you if you like..
Michael Ellenbogen
Posted: Saturday, December 10, 2016 2:13 PM
Joined: 11/30/2011
Posts: 4460


I also have some balance problems at times. If they happened often I would consider a cane.


Iris L.
Posted: Saturday, December 10, 2016 2:34 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18508


This was the exercise program for Parkinson't patients that was posted before.

http://www.pwr4life.org/


I wish we had something like this for PWDs--a supportive environment.


Knee problems can increase risk for falls too, if the knee gives way.  I used to have that problem, but my knee function is better now, after losing 40 pounds.



Iris L.

 

 


jfkoc
Posted: Saturday, December 10, 2016 5:24 PM
Joined: 12/4/2011
Posts: 21242


pwr4life is one of my periodic  posts. Do take a look at the site. Tai Chi for Parkinson's is offered here too.
Iris L.
Posted: Saturday, December 10, 2016 9:23 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18508


Thanks for bringing this to our attention, jfkoc.  


How are you doing tonight, Bill?


Iris L.


alz+
Posted: Sunday, December 11, 2016 5:56 AM
Joined: 9/12/2013
Posts: 3608


Bill - the black ice deal - I fell 3 times so far this year on it and my neighbors said they are not walking because of the ice under snow.

the road graders make it super slick. last year it snowed and covered the steps off my deck. I forgot there were steps there and went air born and crashed on my back on the steps. but no amount of careful makes up for this round of ice.

my posture in walking has turned into a forward slump many times over past 4 years and I also force myself to stand up and walk with a normal gait and let arms swing. it stimulates the brain and harmonizes our inner balance, like cross-crawling.

the super cold and ice is more dangerous this year than anyone remembers. very cool you are a martial arts guy. getting the body to move, training, is fun. thanks for letting us know you are doing ok.


BillBRNC
Posted: Sunday, December 11, 2016 7:35 AM
Joined: 12/2/2015
Posts: 1018


Thanks again for the replies. I woke this morning to sore everything. I guess I jarred more than my head when I fell. But the soreness should pass away in a day or two. Plan to take a walk with Doc in about 30 minutes. Cold but sunny with just light wind, so nice day really. Everyone take care of yourselves.
The_Sun_Still_Rises
Posted: Sunday, December 11, 2016 9:48 AM
Joined: 7/24/2015
Posts: 3020


Sorry you fell Bill, but glad you alright - save for headache.  I fall a lot as well due weakness, per myasthenia gravis, and also likely due dementia and my not processing visual info as well...or knowing where my body is in space as well as used do. 

I used do PT and OT quite a lot for the physical stuff, and they gave me a REALLY good balance exercise....you stand like at a counter, and reach over you head like you putting things in cupboard or something.  For some reason, this real helps the balance things. 

Also, crossing midline exercises....you may want google some...real helps the brain keep making connections. 

Is Doc trained for balance help???  If so, a balance harness may be a great use you.  I use one on Bodhi and cannot get by without it. 

You also may want look into PT and OT give you things help you out. 

<3


jfkoc
Posted: Sunday, December 11, 2016 12:19 PM
Joined: 12/4/2011
Posts: 21242


Dick's PT told him to walk with hiking sticks (look like ski poles). His neuro said that he himself always uses them. Got the bright red ones...very snappy!
Unforgiven
Posted: Sunday, December 11, 2016 1:04 PM
Joined: 1/28/2013
Posts: 2659


Was ice involved, Bill?  I'm not sure where you live and if you have it.  Be careful about the material in your shoe soles.  some of the synthetics have no traction whatsoever on cold surfaces.  You will probably never walk quite the same again, as the body does not forget that moment of loss of friction and control.  Ice melting salt will become your friend, and since my own fall on black ice in 2008, I walk like an old person, centered always.  I managed not to hit my head, while injuring my coccyx.

 Pay attention to Doc, because he will sense if anything is amiss with your head before you do.  And then call 911 before calling family or attempting to go out yourself.  Good luck, man.


Unforgiven
Posted: Sunday, December 11, 2016 1:11 PM
Joined: 1/28/2013
Posts: 2659


Like I said, Alz, ice-melter and cleats are your best friends.  We have horses that need tending in all conditions, and there have been some years where the horses and I use piles of manure as safety stepping stones.  The repeated freeze and thaw cycle is like nature's Zamboni machine.
BillBRNC
Posted: Sunday, December 11, 2016 4:38 PM
Joined: 12/2/2015
Posts: 1018


Yes, Doc was originally trained to be a Parkinson's service dog, so he knew or knows all that stuff. I'm going to give him a refresher period at the program for the mobility stuff. It was included in my "donation" to the program to get Doc. I guess it is getting that time, but I've been holding off because of the other things I'm working with him on that deal more with the dementia stuff. So much to do, but I keep forgetting what I'm supposed to do, plus I just don't get motivated like I used to. It will get done, so says I.
Iris L.
Posted: Sunday, December 11, 2016 5:00 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18508


I'm glad you're up and about today, Bill.  The walking poles sound like a good idea.  There was a class on walking poles on the cruise that I went on last summer.  They are good for stability.  Here is some information.


How to Choose the Best Walking Poles or Trekking Poles


Sometimes two legs are not enough for stability on the trail. A hiking or walking stick is the traditional way to give yourself a little more stability. Walking with two poles can provide even more stability and other workout benefits. Fitness walking poles, nordic walking poles, and Exerstrider poles are great for exercise on streets, sidewalks, and paths. Trekking poles are designed for use on trails and uneven terrain.

read more:

https://www.verywell.com/before-you-buy-fitness-walking-or-trekking-poles-3432912

 

I know there are cleats you can buy to put on regular shoes or boots.  


Dealing with ice and snow is one reason I am reluctant to move from Southern California.


Iris L.


jfkoc
Posted: Sunday, December 11, 2016 5:13 PM
Joined: 12/4/2011
Posts: 21242


Bill's list

1) Select trekking poles (http://www.outdoorgearlab.com/Trekking-Poles-Reviews)

2) Order poles

3) look at 

Stabilicers Lite Walkers

 at LL Bean

4) decide to order or not

5) if yes then order

6) when they arrive I would "install" them on one pair of shoes and not remove til spring

 


BillBRNC
Posted: Sunday, December 11, 2016 6:47 PM
Joined: 12/2/2015
Posts: 1018


I just looked at LLBean and saw what you listed. They look great, workable, and easy to use. I will be ordering them as you suggested. Thanks.
BlueSkies
Posted: Sunday, December 11, 2016 6:53 PM
Joined: 2/24/2016
Posts: 1096


Glad you are doing okay Bill.   It can be scary when you start to have trouble with your balance.   I have a lot of balance issues too and a bad knee from a motorcycle accident.

I like the idea of walking poles.  I have a cane, but I think walking poles are better for long walks.  Great idea jfkoc.  


BillBRNC
Posted: Sunday, December 11, 2016 7:31 PM
Joined: 12/2/2015
Posts: 1018


I have a cane too, but I haven't felt the need to use it yet. I think the poles would be better, but I have to use one hand to hold Doc's leash, so I'll probably stick with the cane until I really need the poles. Just ordered the shoe things from Amazon. I ordered from Amazon because I also needed to order some other stuff. I also ordered a set of the shoe things from my wife, who has always been fearful of walking on ice, as she has fallen a couple of times over the years. Great idea. I can't believe how sore I am all over. I must have fallen on more than just my head, but nothing is broken, other than my pride, and have very little of that left I guess.
The_Sun_Still_Rises
Posted: Monday, December 12, 2016 7:27 AM
Joined: 7/24/2015
Posts: 3020


You hang on the balance harness one hand, and the leash the other hand.  I use a double leash...one, I attach his regular collar, and tie the harness.  The other, I have with a martingale collar...so that on the off chance he panics and slips his collar, he never loses the collar with his tags on it, if that makes sense.  The martingale is similar a choke collar, other than it does not tighten endlessly.  This allows me give him corrections if I need do.  I use my off hand point him the direction I want turn.  He does no care for words, so we work silently. 

I found, and this may be just my experience, or maybe because he so dang soft...but wherever I go with him...it causes people want come up talk us and pet him.  This a perk in dementia, since people tend avoid us. 

I balance on him as you would a cane.  The canes kill my tennis elbows, so I cannot use...well not without injury.  As I get wobbly, I can pull and push against him and he stay steady.  I found the dog need get used you....your need...but these dogs naturally want fill a need, so once they get it they know.  Bodhi knew I would tip back or forward and so he would just get behind or in front me and brace...much better in my opinion than a cane. 

The hardest part disability, I found, is wrapping our own brain around.  Like when I needed start using a cane...there is never a day that tells you this the day start using it.  You just have arbitrarily decide...which feels really, really weird.  Same when I had use walker.  They brought it my house, set it up, show me how use it...but my god, how one make the decision first day use in public?!  I was like 45 or something then...but when I did start using it, I cannot tell you the relief...it was huge and palatable.  When I went doctors office, I'd have stand in line 15 minutes check in...it was brutal and killed me each time, I would have recover a whole week.  Now, I had a place sit...it was great, my recover time shortened a day. 

And that real the fine line...when the adaptation a relief, you know it was the right time.

I have no words for helping get over the weirdness begin with....it always just weird, really really weird...and awkward. 

Hopefully you will no have what I had, soon after I began using the walker and just had suck up my humility of it all...I got dystonia movements really bad from a drug they tried me on, it was worse than Michal J Fox movements...I was MORTIFIED...and yet, because I am by myself, I still had go pick up my prescriptions (where they all knew me)...and I had go grocery shop my mom...I stopped looking at people, I just could no bear it.  I was terrified I was going die, and I still had no diagnosis...and doctors that did not seem all that urgent in finding what was wrong me.  I was also quickly losing my ability walk.  It all made the my issue walker seem small in comparison....I only offer that in a "be careful what you wish for" kind of thing...and for let you know, it ok...it really is...we survive many things, and you will survive going out with balance dog and cane as well. 

Dog verses cane...with cane or walker, people no look at you....surprisingly.  With dog, everyone looks at you.  I am deeply introverted....so if that an issue. 

Dementia no for wimps....it require a significant amount of intestinal fortitude. 

Best of luck, Bill.

<3


llee08032
Posted: Monday, December 12, 2016 7:56 AM
Joined: 5/20/2014
Posts: 4408


Several falls here Bill. I have to to pay attention to every step. Please take the best of care!
ghostdog
Posted: Monday, December 12, 2016 8:38 AM
Joined: 2/9/2015
Posts: 547


Bill, I walk a lot on all surfaces and I have balance issues. Black ice is a big problem in the winter where I live.

I use ice grips over shoes and hiking boots -- they are great on ice and snow but not perfect.  If you transition to a dry or just wet but hard surface especially something like concrete or flooring, they can make walking difficult and you have to take them off or be able to adjust to a different gait.  Just a heads up.  The models of grips differ  a bit too -- mine are slightly more technical (though not glacier gear), my partner has some designed more for commuter type use which transition between surfaces better but also aren't quite as durable and gripping.

I use trekking poles. At one point in time they really changed my life. I suggest that if you want to try trekking poles with the dog, you just use one.  They are different than a cane (believe me, I know about canes and walkers too) -- more of a balance point than a support.  I use cheap ones that I bought at Tuesday Morning, Walmart sells similar (not that I shop there usually) -- I bought my mother expensive ones from a technical manufacturer and I like the cheap ones better for everyday fitness type walking which is only mildly hilly here.  The weight difference is not significant outside a backpacking context, IMHO, and the more expensive ones sometimes have fussy grip gloves.  You can buy single poles at places like REI.  I am very sensitive to changes as the shoes wear out on the tips of poles and buy replacement shoes cheaply on Amazon -- the poles also have a snow end (a small spike) for when you are walking on icey/snowy.  Another alternative would be  a hiking staff.

I sometimes use a helmet -- I use a snowboard helmet.  People just think I'm training for some cross country event.

You're probably not there. But I also have an athletic mouth guard.  Never used it but after a really bad fall while out walking without poles (a tiny divot in the path got me) I like having it as a possibility -- when I fantasize about running.

And you may know this but if you are having or have in the future balance issues, all kinds of little things can throw you off including heel wear and stepping on small things that you wouldn't even realize you stepped on in the past.

I strongly recommend balance exercises.  They don't have to take a lot of time and are very simple and a fun challenge.  Just standing on one foot (with support if you need it), extending that time, and then trying that with your eyes shut.  It can make a huge difference.  There's lots of info on the internet, but a friendly PT could set you up with home exercises after an evaluation.

And since you've done martial arts you should already know how to fall -- right?

Good luck. Keep trekking.

 

 


BillBRNC
Posted: Monday, December 12, 2016 8:48 AM
Joined: 12/2/2015
Posts: 1018


GhostDog, thanks for the interesting stuff to think about. I appreciate it. As for knowing how to fall due to martial arts, the idea really is to make the other guy fall, but yes I've had plenty of experience flat on the mat. Bill.
Iris L.
Posted: Monday, December 12, 2016 10:32 AM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18508


Thanks for sharing your experiences and the advice about balance exercises, ghostdog.  I have had a few falls myself, although they were all indoors.  It's a good idea for us to anticipate balance problems and be prepared.


Iris L.


BillBRNC
Posted: Tuesday, December 13, 2016 12:57 PM
Joined: 12/2/2015
Posts: 1018


Well, the jury is in on my fall. I have a "mild" concussion, with emphasis on mild. I still have headaches in the center of my forehead, which apparently are related to my brain getting knocked around some. I've never had headaches like these. They are bad at all, just bothersome and uncomfortable, but not bad at all. Rest and relaxation seems to be the fix, as if I've been doing much else anyway. I'm lucky, and I know it. The things for  my shoes should come tomorrow, and I plan to use them whenever there is ice or even the possibility of ice. As with us all, we don't need any more problems than we already have. My wife thinks my eyesight thing is probably Lewy Body, as I've been having weird hallucinations for close to a year now. Nothing fancy, just seeing things that aren't there or thinking I see things that aren't there, or missing distances big time...stuff like that. I just need to be careful, particularly with my balance stuff. Anyway, thanks for all comments and concerns. Bill.
Veterans kid
Posted: Tuesday, December 13, 2016 8:59 PM
Joined: 10/17/2014
Posts: 1239


Bill,  I was so happy to read your last post-and that you're ok.   Hopefully the headaches related to the mild concussion, will fade soon. I wish I had some suggestions for you, but they're already has been great suggestions with the polls, cane, exercises, and the things that you wear over your boots for snow and ice.

I saw your post  that you would fallen, and I started reading. Like I said I was very glad when I got to the end and saw that you are OK.  

Hoping we all have a "fall free" winter.  

Always be VK