Falls Prevention Awareness Day Suggests Ways to Prevent Fall-Related Injuries
Falls Prevention Awareness Day, which is scheduled for September 23, 2015, is intended to raise awareness about the perils of fall accidents for elderly people and encourage the dissemination of fall-prevention strategies. Since fall-prevention efforts are not just limited to the seniors who are most at risk of catastrophic or traumatic fall-related injuries, the National Council on Aging is also reaching out to a younger demographic by promoting Falls Prevention Awareness Day on social media through the creation of an official social media hashtag: #FPAD15.
Although slip & falls and trip & falls are serious accidents that can result in significant or even catastrophic injuries, many times these accidents are preventable. Practical lifestyle adjustments can help to reduce the risk of slip and fall accidents.
As part of the buildup to Falls Prevention Awareness Day, the National Council on Aging provided a number of resources to assist in the prevention of fall-related injuries for elderly people. For example, the council released a list of tips that elderly people in NJ and throughout the U.S. can follow to stay safe.
There are a number of steps you can take to protect yourself against a serious slip & fall accident in your home or elsewhere. These prevention efforts include:
- Regular exercise: It is imperative that you engage in a good exercise program and do what is necessary to maintain your physical health as you get older. Regular physical activity can improve your balance, muscle strength and flexibility, which in turn makes it less likely that you will suffer a fall accident. Additionally, consultations with physical therapists can help to tailor an exercise program to the particular needs of the elderly individual who is at risk of serious fall-related injuries.
- Medical check-ups: Older individuals are at greater risk of serious health scares. Moreover, elderly people are more likely to sustain catastrophic injuries as a result of slips & falls. That’s why it is crucial for you or your elderly loved one to get comprehensive clinical assessments and routine medical check-ups, in addition to speaking with your health care provider about your personal medical history and unique health risks.
- Annual eyesight and hearing exams: One of the leading causes of falls for elderly people in NJ is poor vision. That’s why it is crucial for you to get regular eye examinations. Additionally, an annual hearing exam can help to ensure that you are aware of your surroundings and are able to avoid serious fall-related injuries.
- Home safety assessments: You should take precautions to reduce tripping hazards in your home and make sure there are no objects or items, such as loose papers, boxes and phone cords, in your elderly loved one’s home that might increase the likelihood of a slip & fall accident. This should also include an increase in lighting particularly dangerous areas, as well as the installation of grab bars in bathtubs, showers and other areas that pose the most severe risks of a slip and fall. Additionally, an assessment of your elderly loved one’s living quarters can go a long way toward minimizing the risks associated with a fall accident so that the injuries sustained in the event of a fall won’t be quite so severe.
- Medication management: If you believe that your elderly loved one is being overmedicated, or is in need of additional medication, you should consult with a qualified doctor or pharmacist. An elderly person is more likely to suffer a slip & fall accident when they are not properly medicated. That’s why you should regularly review your medications, including both prescription and over-the-counter medications, and assess their effectiveness.
Barry Sugarman at the Sugarman Law Firm is committed to providing the highest quality legal representation for New Jersey’s aging community and their families. If your elderly loved one has suffered a fall-related injury you believe was caused by nursing home or assisted living facility negligence, call our office immediately to discuss your case and explore all of your legal options.