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Elderly Fall


Falling-Related Accidents in the Elderly

Falls can happen to everyone, but when it happens to a senior family member, the consequences could be deadly or fatal. In the most recent Canadian Community Health Survey for people over the age of 65, over 45% of falls happen on everyday walking surfaces, while the other parts occur from physical sports, elevated or uneven surfaces, or health issues. These can happen simply by tripping, sudden vision blur, or by other preventable causes. There are many ways to protect against such incidents, starting with simple improvements to daily lifestyle, and even changes around the house.

Elderly Fall

Elderly Fall

Changes Around the House

Some changes you can make to prevent your loved one from having a fall are:

  • Refraining from putting everyday utensils in high storages places that require a step stool to reach
  • Taking out little throw rugs, or use double side tape to tape rugs down to prevent slipping
  • Place non-slip mats in bath tubs and shower stalls
  • Invest in better lighting around the house
  • Install curtains or shades to reduce glare around the house
  • Install handrails on all stair cases or places with uneven footing
  • Encourage wearing shoes inside and outside the house, and avoid slippers
  • Always keeping the house clean from grease, dust, and objects that could be a tripping hazard
  • Keeping the yard clean (Shovelling snow, raking leaves, filling cracks in concrete, etc)
  • Clearing areas of electrical cords
  • Avoid using any type of wax or waxy cleaning agent on floors
  • Use cordless technologies (phones, remotes, etc)

Investing in these home improvements will definitely give returns in the long run. Whether it be preventing falls, and simple accidents that could happen, it will boost the confidence of you and your loved ones during everyday tasks.

Changes to Lifestyle

  • Maintain a healthy diet filled with nutritious foods
  • Have regular physical activities, and an overall active lifestyle
  • Get your vision checked regularly, at least once a year
  • Double check your medicine and prescriptions, because as we get older, our bodies react differently to medicines

When we are in our early years, taking care of our bodies by having a good diet, and having exercise don’t seem that significant to us, because our bodies are way more adaptive and changing when we are younger. However, aging leads to our bodies react more sluggishly or even completely different than before to various stimuli. Maintaining a vitamin filled and nutritious diet can help our body in aging, and leading an active lifestyle with regular exercise can even slow the aging process.

A frequently asked question is: Should elders just refrain from moving, or going out completely? The answer is no, because people who are afraid of falling and don’t exercise at all become even more prone to falling accidents. This is due to muscles deteriorating, joints becoming more and stiff, as well as loss of balance and coordination.

Some Statistics

-1/3 of seniors (aged 65 or above) will fall at least once each year
-Falling is the 6th highest cause of death in elderly people
-Most falls occur in the victim’s home, while doing daily tasks and activities
-In Canada, over 3 billion dollars are spent a year on medical care related to falling accidents in seniors.

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