As a family caregiver, it is likely to worry a considerable amount about helping your parent avoid falling. This is something emphasized to all senior adults and those who care for them, but is it really a serious risk? Understanding the realities of fall risk for older adults can help you as a family caregiver understand this challenge and make modifications to your care routine that will have to protect your parent from falls.
Here are a few facts to know about falls:
- Approximately one-third of all older adults over the age of 65 in the United States will experience a fall in any given year
- Almost 70% of those older adults who experienced a fall each year will experience another within 6 months. The injuries associated with the second fall tend to be more serious and longer-lasting than those associate with a first fall
- The risk for falling increases with age, with the most serious falls happening in the oldest and most fragile of the population
- Women are more likely to experience serious falls than men, and also more likely to report falls
- Falls are a leading cause of death among seniors over the age of 65
- Nearly 10,000 deaths in the United States each year list falls as a contributing factor
- More than half of the fatalities caused by falls each year are among those over the age of 74
- Among seniors between the ages of 65 and 69, one out of every 200 falls will result in a fracture of the hip
- The rate of hip fractures increases to one out of every ten falls among those over the age of 85
- 25% of seniors who fracture a hip while falling will die within six months of experiencing the injury. This means one out of every four seniors will experience death within six months of fracturing their hip
Elder care can make a tremendous difference for an elderly adult struggling with mobility issues or other problems that increase their risk for falling. An elderly home care services provider can offer physical support to help your parent with activities such as navigating their home, transferring from bed, moving in and out of chairs or cars, and more. This care provider can also assist with other elements of fall risk prevention, including encouraging your parent to eat a healthy diet and stay hydrated, helping them to stay physically active to keep their body strong and resilient, and offering medication reminders to keep them compliant and reduce the risk of side effects.
IF YOU OR AN AGING LOVED-ONE ARE CONSIDERING ELDER CARE IN SMITHFIELD, NC, PLEASE CONTACT THE CARING STAFF AT SENIORS HELPING SENIORS TODAY. CALL (919) 761-5346.
Kathy is a Certified Dementia Practitioner (CDP) who is active in several other senior related organizations, including Alzheimer’s State Champion program, Friends of the Northern Wake Senior Center board member, Ambassador for the Rolesville Chamber of Commerce, Aging Life Care Association (ALCA), Health Affairs Round Table (HART), and Senior Information Networking Group (SING).