Did you know falls are the leading cause of fatal and non-fatal injuries for Older Americans?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, falls result in more than 3 million injuries treated in emergency rooms every year, including over 800,000 hospitalizations, often involving hip fractures and head injuries, and more than 27,000 deaths.
It’s a massive public health problem that not only threatens senior adult safety, but includes enormous economic and personal costs. It doesn’t, however, have to be this way.
In fact, falling is not a normal part of the aging process.
Far from it. Adult children of aging seniors, other family members and friends can do a lot to help mitigate falling risks and prevent falls from happening.
It all starts with education.
Thankfully, the National Council on Aging hosts a Fall Prevention Awareness Day every September, with this year’s event occurring on Sept. 23. Taking part is perhaps the easiest and most comprehensive way to learn about the impact of senior falls, and to develop prevention strategies to protect an aging loved ones. The event is also an opportunity to find support. As important as information is, finding family caregiver support and help for when you’re not around can make all the difference.
Fall Prevention Awareness Day is part of the National Council on Aging’s “Falls Free Initiative,” which offers a wide range of educational resources such as webinars, local partnerships and guest speakers from the CDC, community-based organizations and state elder care coalitions. And it’s all free. These resources, along with Twitter chats, Facebook Live video broadcasts and other online tools helped reach 154 million people across 43 states and the District of Columbia last year. According to NCOA, another 2.5 million individuals participated through state- and community-level fall risk screenings, prevention programs and public awareness events.
Even a little bit of information can go a long way when it comes to caring for a senior loved one, especially when his or her well-being is at stake.
Preventing senior adult falls often starts with education. This is just a brief summary of how prevalent falls are among older adults, especially as they age. If this article raised more questions than it answered for you, or if you are ready to begin planning to protect your older loved ones, do not wait to contact us.