Slipping and falling are both especially dangerous scenarios for seniors. They are the most prevalent causes of hospital visits, injury, and death among this demographic, which is why elderly individuals must remain vigilant when walking outside this winter.
However, no matter which season it is, seniors should be extra cautious about the risk of falling. With that in mind, here are five common reasons for slips and falls for the elderly.
The Health Effects of Aging
The health effects that come with aging compound upon each other, making it even harder to stop their progression once they start appearing. A sedentary lifestyle makes it much more likely that an elderly individual will slip or fall when they stand up.
This is due to various factors, including worse balance, less flexibility, reduced bone density, muscle mass, strength, and poorer coordination. These health effects increase the risk of falling and make the injury more severe if someone does fall.
Decline in Vision Acuity
Macular degeneration is one of the most common ailments among the elderly community, and other eye disorders are also prevalent. If you can’t see your surroundings clearly, your risk of slipping and falling increases significantly.
Even if your health is in top condition, if you can’t see where you’re going, you are increasingly more likely to slip and fall. Also, if someone receives a diagnosis from their doctor about an eye disorder and refuses to follow their treatment plan, it only increases the odds that an accident will occur.
Issues With Medication
Medication issues are another common reason for the elderly to slip and fall. As we get older, we need more medications to deal with the health effects of aging.
Some of these medicines have side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, and cognitive impairment due to lower blood pressure. These symptoms can make a fall more likely, and they can happen to people of any age who use opioids, heart medications, and sedatives.
Conditions such as arthritis, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s can all affect someone’s ability to balance. These conditions become increasingly more common as we get older, which is why walking canes for women and men are so useful for those who are currently dealing with these conditions. In addition, the nerve damage that comes with these conditions leaves seniors at risk of having their legs slip out from underneath them.
After a major surgical procedure such as hip replacement surgery, an elderly person can feel weaker and less energetic than before the surgery. Although the pain is temporary, it can develop into a long-term ailment if the body doesn’t heal properly, leaving someone at risk of falling or slipping.
Overall, as long as seniors stay aware of the most common causes of slipping and falling, they can prevent them from happening. Now that you know five common reasons for slips and falls for the elderly, you can help your aging loved ones stay strong.