Why do elders slip and fall?

As you may realize, there are several factors that feed into the statistics of why falls happen and what puts an elder at higher risk for a fall. Perhaps it is the medication that they take, perhaps they are not eating enough, at the right times or the proper types of foods, perhaps they are not sleeping properly – all of this can feed into why an elder slips and falls.

Since With Age Comes Respect, I often do research into these types of issues, trying to forego as many accidents as possible. As the website http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00135 states, here are some factors to really consider and then fix before the inevitable happens:

Medical Risk Factors

  • Impaired musculoskeletal function, gait abnormality and osteoporosis
  • Cardiac arrhythmias (irregular heartbeat), blood pressure fluctuation
  • Depression, Alzheimer’s disease and senility
  • Arthritis, hip weakness and imbalance
  • Neurologic conditions, stroke, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis
  • Urinary and bladder dysfunction
  • Vision or hearing loss
  • Cancer that affects the bones
  • Side effects of medications

Personal Risk Factors

  • Age. The risk for a fall increases with age. Normal aging affects our eyesight, balance, strength, and ability to quickly react to our environments.
  • Activity. Lack of exercise leads to decreased balance, coordination, and bone and muscle strength.
  • Habits. Excessive alcohol intake and smoking decrease bone strength. Alcohol use can also cause unsteadiness and slow reaction times.
  • Diet. A poor diet and not getting enough water will deplete strength and energy, and can make it hard to move and do everyday activities.

Risk Factors in the Home

  • Many falls are the result of hazards like slippery or wet surfaces, poor lighting, inadequate footwear, and cluttered pathways in the home.
  • Most fractures are the result of a fall in the home, usually related to everyday activities such as walking on stairs, going to the bathroom, or working in the kitchen.
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About melissalstoneburner

Melissa is the proud mother of two boys. She also like to take care of all of her elderly clients as though they were her actual flesh and blood, too. Melissa began her elderly care business, Time to Care, in August, 2012. Since then, she has successfully seen several clients through life and onto the next life. She writes about what she knows, what she doesn't know, and reveals all the research in between. She believes that elderly care is the best thing she has ever done in life; second only to being a mother!
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