Falling can have serious consequences for elderly people so it is important to know what impacts it can have to their health. According to research¹ one in three people aged over 65 fall every year – the number one cause of injury. Falls are the most common cause of injury related deaths in people over the age of 75.
With a third of elderly people sustaining falls it is important that families and carers understand the possible causes and what preventative measures should be put in place. A fall often has a negative impact on confidence levels causing the sufferer to become less mobile. The reaction to a fall also heightens the fear of losing independence.
Causes of falls
A fall is a natural consequence to ageing which can also be combined with any or all of the following causes:
- balance problems and muscle weakness
- impaired vision
- a long-term health condition, such as dementia, heart conditions and low blood pressure , which can lead to and a brief loss of consciousness
7+ steps to help prevent a fall in the elderly
- remove clutter to allow enough space to move about with out the risk of tripping
- discard rugs
- use a non-slip mat in the bathroom
- ensure adequate lighting in the home
- regular eye tests even for those who already wear glasses t avoid vision problems
- get regular exercise to improve strength and balance – go for daily walks, attend aqua-fit classes, join a dance class for older people.
- maintain a healthy diet and eat regular meals to avoid low blood sugar and feeling of dizziness
Falls can be prevented by knowing what the possible causes are and what measures to put in place to avoid the risk of falling. If a fall has left you feeling scared and nervous about going out and doing chores around the home, then get help in the home to enable you to live independently.
- WRVS 2012 – PCP conducted the interviews with 500 older people in England, Scotland and Wales and asked them about their experiences of falls.