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Open Arms Academy

Seniors & Falls: How Can We Prevent Them?

Fall Prevention: a phrase that gets discussed a lot in the healthcare and home care communities. But what does it actually mean and why is it important?

Why is Fall Prevention Important?

Falls can cause a significant amount of damage in an older person’s life; broken bones, traumatic brain injuries and in some cases, death. Take a look at the top statistics from the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention on the damage that a fall can cause:

  • More than one out of four older people fall each year, but less than half tell their doctor about the fall
  • One out of five falls causes a serious injury such as broken bones or a head injury
  • In the last decade, fall death rates have increased 30%
  • Falling once doubles the chance of falling again

Falls, no matter if they cause injury or not, create a sense of fear in older Americans. This fear then prohibits them from attending social engagements, joining group activities – essentially isolating themselves.

But why are falls so common in the older generation? What causes a fall?

What Makes Us Fall?

There are many factors that can lead to a fall; some are physiological, and some are environmental. Lower body weakness, difficulties with walking, and uneasiness with balance are some of the most common causes of a fall. Other physiological factors may include:

  • Vitamin D deficiency
  • Vision problems
  • Foot pain
  • Some use of medicines can cause balance issues

The physiological causes of falls are a bit more difficult to prevent, however there are a few things you can do to stay aware of your fall risk:

  • Meet with your doctor on a regular basis and have them evaluate your risk for falling.
  • Maintain regular eye doctor appointments & be sure to update your glasses prescription
  • Do daily exercises to work on strength and balance

The environmental factors are a bit more varied – they can be anything from the wrong footwear to uneven steps to a flipped corner on a throw rug. In contrast to the physiological factors, the environmental factors of falling are easy to prevent!

  • Move miscellaneous items from off the floor
  • Add grab bars to the necessary places in the home
  • Make sure each room has sufficient lighting at all times of the day

At Open Arms Solutions, we understand & recognize the importance of fall prevention – we have developed training, oversight and procedures to help reduce the chances of fall and injury. With help from our Open Arms Solutions Care Coordinators and Caregivers, falls can be prevented! Give us a call to learn more about our Fall Prevention program.

Give us a call at 847-272-4997 or email for more information.

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