Slips, Trips, and Falls and the Elderly: A Home Safety Checklist
As we all know, it is not uncommon for our beloved elderly to experience accidents in the home…and while it may seem that we are, at times, helpless as these scenarios play out, what’s important is learning how we can go about minimizing their injuries. First, it must be understood that dangers around the average home cause thousands of unintentional deaths per year – and falls are the cause of the most common fatal and nonfatal injuries among older adults.
Consider that, according to the Centers for Disease Control:
• Some 2.3 million nonfatal fall injuries among older adults in 2010 were treated in emergency departments, with more than 662,000 of these patients hospitalized.
• The direct medical costs of falls, as adjusted for inflation, was $30 billion in 2010.
• Between 20 and 30-percent of falls among adults age 65 and older result in hip fractures, head lacerations and head trauma – injuries that normally lead to making living on their own more difficult.
• More than one-third of adults 65 and older fall each year…and fewer than half of them talk about falling with their health care provider.