Falls Prevention Awareness

Saturday, September 22nd was National Falls Prevention Awareness Day. One report states, “Falls are the leading cause of fatal and non-fatal injuries for older Americans.” [1] Older adults are desiring to stay in their own homes. With this continued independence falls and injuries from falls become a concern.

Photo Credit in References

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention list the following statistics concerning falls:

· 25% of Americans over 65 experience falls each year

· Approximately 6 Older Americans are treated in the ER for falls every minute

· 3 Older Americans die from a fall every hour

· More than 3 million injuries are treated in the ER annually, this figure is up nearly 87% from 2002 figures

· 29,000 deaths occurred from falls. The CDC states a 30% increase in deaths from 2007-2016

Photo Credit in References

The 3 main causes of falls can be categorized as physical, medical and environmental. [2]

A few reasons for falls: medications, impaired vision, household hazards, chronic conditions/illness, Vitamin D deficiency, foot pain and poor footwear.

A few simple preventives can reduce the fall risk for Older Americans. The National Association of Areas on Aging has a comprehensive “Fall Prevention List” accessible online (https://www.n4a.org/files/PreventingFalls.pdf).

We share a few of their suggestions here:

· Stairways: All handrails are properly installed not broken or loose. When possible handrails on both sides of stairs are best

· Floors and rugs: All floor boards are even. Rugs, including area rugs are firmly secured to the floor.

· Bathroom: Mount grab bars to wall with secure reinforcements

· Kitchen: Put frequently used items within easy reach

· Lighting: Have a lamp near bed. You then don’t turn off light and then walk to bed in dark room

Growing older doesn’t have to be scary. We just need to be vigilant and find ways to stay healthy and help our elders do the same.


Reference: Important Facts About Falls

Accessed at: https://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreationalsafety/falls/adultfalls.html

Accessed on: September 20, 2018.

Reference: Preventing Falls Checklist

Accessed at: https://www.n4a.org/files/PreventingFalls.pdf

Accessed on: September 20, 2018.

Reference Photo One:

Accessed at: https://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreationalsafety/falls/index.htm

Accessed on September 20, 2018

Reference Photo Two: Fall Deaths Infographic

Accessed at: https://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreationalsafety/falls/adultfalls.html

Accessed on September 20, 2018.

Disclaimer: All information, content, and material of the Cardinal Institute for Health Career’s blog is for informational purposes only and are not intended to serve as a substitute for the consultation, diagnosis, and/or medical treatment of a qualified physician or healthcare provider.

[1] https://www.ncoa.org/wp-content/uploads/Falls-Prevention-Fact-Sheet-2018.pdf

[2] https://www.algaecal.com/expert-insights/ultimate-fall-prevention-checklist-seniors/

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