Causes and prevention of fall accidents in the elderly

One simple event can change your life. Slipping on a wet floor or tripping on a loose rug can cause you to fall and sustain an injury. According to MedicineNet, 30 percent of falls among elderly people occur in public places. If you are age 65 years or older, you may fear simple activities such as shopping or walking. 

Falls in senior citizens can occur for a variety of reasons. Here is some helpful information on what causes falls and how to prevent them. 

Environmental factors

Some places simply are not safe. There are a few different hazards in a given area that may contribute to falls:

  • Dim lighting
  • Uneven flooring
  • Slippery surfaces
  • Unstable furniture
  • Loose rugs
  • Steps
  • Objects lying around

If you fall in a public area, you deserve to know that landlords are legally responsible for keeping their environments free of hazards. If you sustain an injury or even a disability because of the negligence of a landlord, the landlord may be liable for your injury.

Medical factors

Some health conditions may also contribute to falls:

  • Myopia, cataracts and other visual impairments
  • Muscle and joint problems due to conditions such as arthritis
  • Difficulty balancing because of thyroid problems, Parkinson’s disease, heart disease or diabetes
  • Nervous system disorders such as sciatica
  • Drowsiness from medications

Fall prevention tips

You may be able to reduce your risk of falling by adhering to these guidelines:

  • Get your eyes and ears tested regularly
  • Stay physically active
  • Limit your alcohol consumption
  • Be aware of any side effects of medications you take
  • Use assistive devices to help you feel steady
  • Stand up slowly
  • Wear shoes with non-skid soles
  • Consume enough vitamin D and calcium to keep your bones strong

If you fall and suffer an injury, make sure you ask someone near you for help or call 911.