September is National Falls Prevention month and we celebrate with words of caution and advice. But, also in September, we remember the victims of 9/11. And just as no one ever believed that the World Trade Center would fall, we don’t believe that we will fall, either. Yet, we do.
A recent study by the University of Michigan cited the rates of falls by older adults actually increased during the pandemic because we got less exercise and did not keep regular medical appointments or eye exams. So let’s use this opportunity to be mindful of the lessons of September, pay heed to the advice of professionals and do a home safety evaluation, get our eyes checked, review our medications and get some regular exercise!
As with so many things in our lives, prevention is worth a pound of cure-thanks to Benjamin Franklin. There are simple exercises that we can do to improve balance and strength to reduce the risk of falls. Get this comprehensive visual guide for 21 Chair Exercises for Seniors NOW! https://agesafeamerica.com/chair-exercises-for-seniors/
Help Older Adults Prevent Falls
Falls Prevention Awareness Day is celebrated on September 22 at the start of the Fall season and we will be bombarded with information about fall prevention and the scary statistics of fall risk among older Americans. At Age Safe® America we know the harsh reality that a fall changes everything! Falls have become epidemic in America and are now the leading cause of death due to injury for those over 65, and account for 40% of all nursing home admissions. Falls are also the leading cause of injury related emergency department visits for older adults, the major cause of hip fractures, and responsible for more than half of fatal head injuries. Nearly half of all seniors sustaining a fall DO NOT resume independent living.
For the person who takes a fall, they often become more nervous about experiencing it again. Their gait and speed of walking changes and even the smallest, imperceptible changes can lead to another fall as our bodies adjust to the new reality. The family members of someone who has taken a fall find themselves a little more concerned and guarded about the fall itself. Sometimes, they leap to conclusions and take unnecessary actions, while well-intended, are not always good solutions.
Annual Home Safety Assessments
100% of ER doctors agree that an annual Home Safety Assessment is important to keep seniors safe at home. A comprehensive home safety assessment performed by a trained Senior Home Safety Specialist™, along with some low-cost modifications can serve to effectively reduce falls and fall-related injury for older adults. A comprehensive Home Safety Assessment can pay for itself by avoiding the high cost of injury or assisted living. Assessment fees are typically between $199-$399 depending on the size of the home and your location.
Falling is Not a Normal Part of Aging.
You can prevent falls by doing the right exercises, making your home safer, getting regular health checkups, and more. Enjoy great resources and learn steps you can take to stay safe and independent from our friends at the National Council on Aging (NCOA) https://www.ncoa.org/older-adults/health/prevention/falls-prevention