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Family Caregiving for Seniors - SageCorner Blog

Number One Cause of Injury to Elderly

by Deah on Thursday, January 11, 2018 9:39 AM

I really need to count my blessings when it comes to Mother and how many times she has fallen. She is not to be up moving around unless there is someone with her. She recently declared the physical therapist said she was not considered a “fall risk” anymore (She fell last evening).

I doubted that assessment from the beginning since I can plainly see how weak she still is. Yes, she is showing signs of improvement, but I really doubt the therapist would have allowed her to take such a risk. I believe this was an exaggeration of her progress so she could regain her independence and relieve some from their caregiving duties. Heavy resistance is present when it comes to doing the daily exercises on her own. A positive mind set toward staying active, doing the exercises, and good nutrition are so very important to getting healthy and staying there. Not just for an elderly person but for those of us who are getting up there in years too. Watching all of this is a good lesson for me.

Others say if she wants to be independent, let her. I guess I just worry too much. Research has shown what a bad fall can do to an elderly person. Many do not realize that falls are the number one cause of injuries and even death among the elderly. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention says that one third of seniors fall each year and one out of five falls does cause a serious injury such as broken bones or head injury. Often these injuries can make it difficult for an elderly person to get around. These falls produce more than 2.3 million emergency room visits a year. I do not believe that mother could recover from a hip injury or even some broken bone injuries.

After an elderly person takes a fall, they often become afraid of falling again and that fear can cause them to refrain from daily activity. This could be weighing heavily on mom’s mind too. As I watch my parents, this avoidance of activity creates another issue as they become both physically and mentally weaker and decline in immune function. Eye infections and UTI’s are occurring quite frequently for mom.

There are many risk factors that contribute to why an older person becomes more likely to fall:

  • Lower body weakness
  • Poor balance
  • Poor vision
  • Vitamin D Deficiency
  • Medications
  • Pain
  • Environment- not making correct modification to living facility.
  • Chronic conditions

Blogs Parent Separator Deah Bowes
accidents
elderly fall
fall prevention
falling
falls
home safety
injury prevention
Author
Deah

Tips and ideas to help care for a senior loved one at home.

  

Lori Paterno, M.Ed. Has a Masters Degree in Rehabilitation Counseling From Penn State University.  She has over 20 years professional experience in Human Services, Counseling, and Education.

Lori Paterno, M.Ed. Has a Masters Degree in Rehabilitation Counseling From Penn State University.  She has over 20 years professional experience in Human Services, Counseling, and Education. 
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