Falls Are A Leading Cause of Hospitalization Among Seniors
Its not even close. Falls are by far the largest cause of hospitalization among seniors. The stats are astounding. According to the CDC, over 700,000 seniors are hospitalized each year because of falls causing head injury and hip fractures. The estimated cost of these falls is around $34 billion.
As serious of a problem as falls are, they are just as easy to prevent. It just takes a little planning and energy.
CDC Recommendations to Prevent Falls
The CDC recommends a number of ways to prevent falls.
- Regular visits to the Doctor to monitor health changes. The Doctor can also check for interactions with your medications to make sure they are not causing balance issues.
- Checking vision is also a great way to prevent falls.
- Removing tripping hazards and installing safety rails in your bathroom can also go along way to keeping a senior safe.
- Exercise is also key to preventing falls. Weakness and poor balance dramatically increase the risk for falls. Activities like seated aerobics, water aerobics and Tia Chi are all good ways to get the balance training your body needs to keep you from falling.
Most seniors think they are too old for exercise or that it will cost too much, but there are many programs in your area that sponsor senior exercise programs at little to no cost.
Where to Find Low Cost Senior Exercise Programs
Community Center or YMCA – These places usually offer at least one senior exercise program like seated aerobics or water aerobics. Quite often your health insurance company will pick up the cost of these programs. After all, it’s also in your insurance companies best interest to keep you from falling versus the cost of a hospital stay.
Senior Living Communities – Most senior living communities have exercise programs or fitness rooms.
Home Care or Outpatient Therapy – You don’t have to be sick to get a shot of therapy. Ask your doctor about home care or outpatient therapy. He can order the treatment anytime and it is usually covered by insurance. Read Related: Home Care: How Does It Work
Mall Walkers – The local shopping mall is a great way to get exercise all-year round. In the summer time it is air conditioned and in the winter you don’t have to worry about rain or snow. A lot of seniors mall walk so it is a good way to meet some new friends.
If you have more questions about preventing falls or safety at home, fill-out the form below to connect with one of our Senior Care Sherpas.