Risk of fall among elderly

Falls among elderly: A quick look

Falls are common in elderly people (those aged 65 or older) and can not only cause injury but can also knock their confidence.

There are around one third of people aged 65 and over, suffer a fall injury at least once a year; resulting in bruises and scrapes, fractures, dislocations, and head injuries.

In Malaysia, falls are the most common of home injury among elderly.

What usually cause fall among elderly?

There is no specific casue that lead to falls as the reasons for falls among elderly are complex. This include:

  • Leg muscle weakness

  • Difficulty with balance or walking

  • Vision problems (cataracts, macular degeneration, wearing bifocals)

  • Medical conditions that limit your ability to get around, such as Parkinson disease, stroke or diabetes

  • Conditions that cause confusion, such as dementia and Alzeimer Disease

  • Depression

  • Taking more than 4 medications at the same time or psychoactive medications (such as sedatives or antidepressants)

  • Using a cane or other walking device

  • Home hazards (throw rugs, pets underfoot)

  • Low blood pressure

What will happen to them after fall?

  • They can suffer moderate to severe injuries such as lacerations, hip fractures, or head traumas. These injuries can make it hard to get around or live independently, and increase the risk of early death

  • Falls are the most common cause of traumatic brain injuries (TBI)

  • Most fractures among elderly are caused by falls. The most common are fractures of the hip, forearm, leg, ankle, pelvis, spine, upper arm, and hand

  • Many people who fall, even if they are not injured, develop a fear of falling.This fear may cause them to limit their activities, which leads to reduced mobility and loss of physical fitness, and in turn increases their actual risk of falling.

How can they can prevent this?

Falls can cause moderate to severe injuries, and can increase the risk of early death. Fortunately, falls are a public health problem that is largely preventable.

In general, eldely people can stay independent and reduce their chances of falling. They can:

  • Ask their doctor or pharmacist to review their medicines — both prescription and over-the counter — to identify medicines that may cause side effects or interactions such as dizziness or drowsiness

  • Have their eyes checked by an eye doctor at least once a year and update their eyeglasses to maximize their vision.  Consider getting a pair with single vision distance lenses for some activities such as walking outside.

  • Make their homes safer by reducing tripping hazards, adding grab bars inside and outside the tub or shower and next to the toilet, adding railings on both sides of stairways, and improving the lighting in their homes

  • Make appointment with the physiotherapist to assess your level of risk of fall

How Physiotherapy can help?

At Physio Savvy, the physiotherapist will uses a wide range of skills to address the unique issues of aging. The physiotherapist will look at issues such as multiple medical diagnoses, emotional and social needs, balance and mobility impairments and challenges in independent living.

Physiotherapy would address are limitations in mobility, balance and pain. Activities including:

  • Uses of manual techniques to help control pain and recover joint and muscle function.

  • Restoration of mobility and balance through exercises to strengthen muscles, balance and gait training to ease transfers and walking

  • Recommendations of assistive devices such as walkers and canes

I would like to go there, but its difficult for me come, is there any other option?

If you find it difficult to come into our clinics for treatment, home physiotherapy may be a better option for you.

Physio Savvy will provide a home session in which:

  • The physiotherapist will come to your home to do an assessment and individualized treatment.

  • They will use manual techniques dealing with the issues based on thorough assessment. T

  • he physiotherapist will prescribe a home exercise program as well

Physiotherapy treatment, in the comfort of your own home, will improve pain, mobility, balance, and functional capabilities.

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Afiq Muhammad

Afiq Muhammad

Physiotherapist at Physio Savvy
Afiq Graduated with BSc (Hons) in Physiotherapy from MARA University of Technology. His past work experience involves varied cases in various fields, making his patient care hollistic and patient based. He is most interested and experienced in the fields of musculoskeletal conditions and sporting injuries.
Afiq Muhammad

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