Falls Prevention

Fall Prevention for Older Adults

September 20-24, 2021 is Falls Prevention Week, a nationwide effort to raise awareness that falls are preventable. 1 in 4 people aged 65 and older fall each year. According to the national council on aging, falls result in more than 3 million injuries treated in emergency rooms and over 800,000 hospitalizations. Because of these statistics, older adults fear falling and therefore limit their activities and social engagements resulting in further physical decline and feelings of helplessness. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend four things you can do to prevent falls.

Have your healthcare provider review your medications and supplements

Talk openly with your healthcare provider if you experience a fall or feel unsteady. Some medications can increase sleepiness or dizziness, especially when combined with other types of medications or supplements. A review of all medications, including supplements and over-the-counter aids, can help identify a potential interaction that could be causing issues.

Exercise to improve your balance and strength

Balance and strength can be improved with the right exercise regime. Lack of exercise can lead to weakness which in turn results in an increased risk of falls. Simple exercises can be done daily to improve thigh and buttock strength, balance, endurance, and overall

Have your eyes and feet checked

Older adults should have annual checkups to evaluate your eyes and feet. Your eye doctor can identify conditions that may increase your chances of falling such as poor vision. By updating eyeglasses or detecting glaucoma or cataracts, your eye doctor can make changes that will improve your vision and therefore decrease your risk of falling. An annual appointment with either your primary care physician or podiatrist is recommended so that proper footwear and/or treatments can be discussed.

Make your home safer

More than 75% of falls in older adults occur inside, or near, the home. You can make your home safer by doing a thorough walk-through to identify things that increase falls. The CDC provides a checklist that can be used during this walk-through. This can be found at: https://www.cdc.gov/steadi/pdf/check_for_safety_brochure-a.pdf

Check your risk for falling by using the tool below:

JMS Senior Living proudly supports the National Council on Aging’s effort to raise awareness that falls are preventable. Maintaining a safe environment for all seniors is one of our missions, and we would be happy to assist you or your loved one if you decide that long-term placement is necessary.