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Tips to Prevent Deadly Falls Among Older Americans

Falling is a significant contributor to death among older Americans, killing approximately 25,000 yearly, according to new research. Adults aged 75 and older should understand their risks of a deadly fall and learn how to prevent it.

Fall Frequency Among Seniors

The American Medical Association published a study Tuesday about fall frequency in older Americans.

For the study, 16 years of US vital statistics data on adults aged 75 were analyzed, according to Fox News. The research showed that the death rate for falls has more than doubled from 2000 to 2016, increasing from 8,600 to 25,190.

Separate data provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that the number of deadly falls increased again in 2017 as an additional 1,250 fatal falls happened to Americans aged 75 and older during that year.

Fall Contributors

Falls can be attributed to several mental and physical problems as well as uncontrollable circumstances such as the weather. Some contributors are listed below.

  • Weak muscle strength
  • Brain injuries
  • Hip replacements or other surgeries
  • Medications
  • Clutter around the house
  • Icy walkways
  • Impaired vision
  • Chronic diseases

Preventing Falls Among the Elderly

Since falling is a significant risk, Americans aged 75 and older should take precautions. Reduce the risk of a dangerous fall by following the tips listed below.

  • Perform strength and balance exercises – Weight-bearing exercises such as walking, balancing exercises, and resistance exercises can strengthen muscles and greatly reduce the risk of falls.
  • Keep rooms free from clutter – Furniture should be easy to maneuver around. Floors should be clear of clutter, electrical cords, throw rugs, and other hazards.
  • Keep rooms and stairwells adequately lit – Fumbling in the dark is dangerous. Make sure light switches are easy to locate or use voice-activated lamps.
  • Install grab bars in bathrooms – Place the bars near tubs, showers, and toilets. Consider using a shower chair if standing is difficult.
  • Receive regular eye exams – Many falls happen because people cannot see their surroundings well. Receive regular eye exams and new prescriptions to ensure proper eyesight.
  • Sand icy walkways – The winter is a difficult time for many older Americans living in colder climates. The cold weather is often hard on their bones and joints, and icy walkways can be deadly. Thoroughly sand icy steps, porches, and walkways and be extremely careful when using them. Also, be aware of slippery parking lots or other areas that become hazardous during the winter.
  • Choose appropriate footwear – Worn-out slippers or shoes can be dangerous. Wear shoes that are supportive with non-slip soles, and buy new ones when they become old or misshapen. Avoid walking in socks or backless slippers.

Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney

Thomas J. Henry Injury Attorneys is a personal injury law firm with offices in Corpus Christi, Texas, San Antonio, Texas and Houston, Texas representing accident victims nationwide. Our priority is to provide our clients with the best legal representation. Our experienced trial attorneys are committed to defending your rights in personal injury matters including defective products, recalled drugs, child injuries, and auto accidents.

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