Falls feature in the Top 5 causes of injury for people in all age groups. For people aged 65 years and over, falls are the leading cause of injury and hospital admissions. As well as injury, the cost of a fall can take its toll socially and emotionally. It can also impact family and friends.
Many people consider falls to be a normal part of ageing. However, falls can be preventable. There are many risk factors linked to falling. If we can identify these risks, we can do our best to prevent falls.
Risk Factors for Falls
Some medications can cause dizziness, tiredness, confusions and blurred vision. People taking five medicines or more may be particularly prone to these common side effects. To mitigate risks, it’s best to have medicines reviewed by your doctor or pharmacists at least every 6 to 12 months. If you need assistance to visit medical specialists, Simply Helping provides a transport service.
Vision plays a major role in balance, and the ability to process our surroundings. Poor eyesight can make it difficult to identify hazards in your living space. It also hinders the signals going to your brain, resulting in a loss of balance. As people grow older, it’s recommended to have your vision tested regularly.
Poor nutrition can result in frailty, loss of muscle mass and strength, dizziness, and both visual and cognitive impairment. In addition, a diet low in calcium can lead to a higher risk of bone fractures in the event of a fall. A healthy diet is important to help prevent falls. Simply Helping home care services can assist with meal preparation and shopping for groceries.
The home environment can consist of a number of tripping hazards and other obstacles. With some basic home maintenance, you can make your home a safer place. Ensure there is adequate lighting, and install sensor lights around outdoor paths and steps. Repair loose flooring or carpet. Add some grab bars in areas that are slippery when wet. Declutter your home, inside and out to prevent falling over hazards.
Many people don’t think twice about using a ladder. But, they should. In men aged 65 to 74 years, ladder falls are the most common cause of injury. When doing jobs such as cleaning the gutters, it’s common to overreach or slip, resulting in a fall. Ladders can also tip sideways if they are not supported correctly. For dangerous jobs around the home, it’s best to leave it to the professionals.
For more tips or assistance to decrease fall risks around your home, contact your local Simply Helping home care specialist.