Falls are likely to occur among the elderly especially those with long-term health conditions. It is important to note that falls are common, but often overlooked cause of injuries.
Most cases do not result to significant injury. Nevertheless, there is always a risk that one can result to fractures and can cause loss of confidence, withdrawal and loss of independence.
What are the usual cases of falls
The aging process puts the elderly at higher risk for falls. In different parts of the world, falls are the usual cause of injury-related deaths among those over 75 years of age.
The elderly face a higher risk due to the following:
- Poor vision
- Balance issues and muscle weakness
- Long-term health conditions such as dementia, heart disease or low blood pressure that can lead to dizziness and momentary loss of consciousness
Falls are likely to occur when:
- A room is poorly lighted
- Flooring is wet or recently polished particularly in the bathroom
- Carpets or rugs are not secured properly
- Individual is reaching for storage areas or going down the stairs
- Individual is rushing to reach the toilet during night or day
Another usual cause of falls is falling from a ladder while performing maintenance work around the house. Among the elderly, this can be quite troublesome since osteoporosis is a common issue.
Various measures can help prevent falls. Daily measures that must be observed around the house include:
- Using non-slip mats or rugs in the bathroom
- Getting assistance when lifting or moving heavy objects
- Cleaning up any spills to prevent slippery, wet floors
The removal of clutter and ensuring that all parts of the house are properly lighted can also prevent falls.
Quick Note / Disclaimer
The material posted on this page on falls is for learning and educational purposes only. To learn about the usual causes and how it is prevented, register for a first aid and CPR course with Mississauga First Aid.