More than one third of adults 65 and older fall each year in the United States. Falls are also the most common cause of nonfatal injuries and hospital admissions for trauma.
For liability reasons an assisted living or residential care provider should avoid making claims that they can prevent a resident from falling. But that doesn’t mean providers should avoid implementing strategies to try to minimize fall risk. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend the following strategies to reduce the risk of falling for older adults:
- Exercise regularly; exercise programs like Tai Chi that increase strength and improve balance are especially good.
- Ask their doctor or pharmacist to review their medicines-both prescription and over-the counter-to reduce side effects and interactions.
- Have their eyes checked by an eye doctor at least once a year.
- Improve the lighting in their home.
- Reduce hazards in their home that can lead to falls.
You can learn more about falls in older adults at the CDC website.