The Facts About Falls in Seniors
Falls are a threat to the health of older adults and can reduce their ability to remain independent. As patient advocates, we always do a safety assessment with our clients. We know that safety is a priority to aging independently and to avoid unnecessary harm.
The rate of injuries and deaths from falls in the United States continues to climb. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) predicts that by the year 2030 there will be 7 fall deaths every hour. This Needs to change!
How can you Prevent Falls?
- Talk to your healthcare provider to evaluate your risks for falling. They can review your medications, to see if anything will make you dizzy or sleepy. Also, ask your doctor about adding Vitamin D (supports muscle strength). Be sure if your doctor adds or changes a medication you are aware of how it may affect your risk of falls.
- Be sure you have your eyes checked yearly. When wearing bifocals things may appear closer or further away than they really are. You may just want to wear your distance prescription outside.
- Do strength and balance exercises. If you have had a change in health condition you may need some physical therapy or occupational therapy to get you back on track. Be sure you discuss these options with your primary care physician.
- Make your home safer. This is a Big One!! Get rid of things that you can trip over. Add grab bars in your bathroom (shower & near toilet). Add rails to each side of your stairs, and use brighter light bulbs to increase more light in your home. There are likely more needs that are unique to your home, whenever possible we will recommend an in-home safety inspection by a patient advocate or another specialized healthcare professional.