Injuries among older adults are a growing public health problem. As the number of older people expands, so does the number of injuries. The expenses of treating these injuries increase as well. In the past, unintentional injuries were the seventh largest cause of mortality among persons aged 65 and over. In addition, most TBI-related hospitalizations and fatalities in older people are caused by falls and motor vehicle accidents.
What are the common types of injuries among older adults?
- Falls: Every year, 36 million falls happen among people aged 65 and over.
- Motor Vehicle Crashes: While driving allows older persons to remain independent and mobile, the chance of being hurt or killed in a traffic accident grows.
- Traumatic Brain Injury: A traumatic brain injury alters how the brain functions. It might result from a jolt, blow, or head bump, as well as a penetrating head injury.
What are the causes of injuries among older adults?
- Stumbling, tripping, and slipping due to poor motor coordination
- Peripheral neuropathy
- Eye problems and poor visual acuity
- Mental and physical decline
What should you do during an injury?
Injuries among older adults may be shocking and unpleasant. Remain calm during an injury and take the following steps:
- Check for injury. Getting up too soon or incorrectly might aggravate an injury.
- Crawl to a firm chair.
- Sit in the chair slowly. Place your hands on the chair seat and move one foot forward until your foot is flat on the floor.
- Get help.
For serious injuries, seek or call emergency medical attention.
How to prevent injuries among older adults?
Taking care of one’s general health might reduce the likelihood of injury. Here are several tips to assist in lowering the number of cases of injuries among older adults.
- Try strength and balance training exercises.
- Have your eyes and ears checked.
- Learn about the adverse effects of any medications you are taking.
- Get sufficient rest. You’re more susceptible to injuries when you are weary.
- Prevent or restrict your use of alcohol.
- Slowly get to your feet. Getting up too rapidly might cause a dip in blood pressure.
- When you need assistance feeling stable while walking, employ an assistive device.
- If walking in icy or wet conditions, use additional care.
- Allow your hands to be free.
- Choose appropriate footwear.
- If the weather is bad, remain indoors