According to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), falls are the leading cause of deaths relating to injuries. In fact, more than one third of adults aged 65 and older fall every year in the U.S.
How Dangerous Is The Problem?
The CDC states:
- 15,800 people aged 65 and older died in 2005 from injuries related to falls. So the fall itself may not have caused the death, but the injury sustained from the fall could have.
- In 2005, approximately 1.8 million people 65 and older were treated in emergency rooms for injuries from falls.
- That same year, more than 433,000 of the falls that were treated in the ER resulted in hospitalization.
What Are The Long-Term Effects Of Falls?
According to information obtained from the CDC:
- Falls are the most common cause of traumatic brain injuries among older adults.
- Up to 30% of people who fall suffer moderate to severe injuries. These injuries include: bruises, hip fractures, and head traumas. These injuries can limit independent living and increase the risk of early death.
- The majority of bone fractures that are caused by falls include: spine, hip, forearm, leg, ankle, pelvis, upper arm, and hand.
- Many people who fall and develop a fear of falling, reduce their mobility and increase their chances of future falls, due to less physical activities in their daily living.
How Can Medical Alert Monitoring Systems Help?
- Medical alert monitoring systems can provide immediate access to life saving ambulance services which can limit injuries by providing early treatment.
- Providers of medical alert services give comfort to loved ones while waiting for the first responders to arrive.
- Many medical alert systems can provide activity monitoring services that provide further security and added safety.
- For seniors or others who are more prone to falling, some companies provide fall detectors to provide more specialized protection, not needed by most people.
Who’s More Prone To Fall, Your Mother or Your Father?
I found it interesting that men are nearly 50% more at risk of dieing from a fall than women. Also, 67% of woman versus men, are more likely to suffer non-fatal injuries as a result of falls. Since men are traditionally stronger than women, strength certainly does not help them here. Could it simply be that physical mass causes increased deaths in men over women?
Clearly, falling is a real issue that can’t be ignored by seniors and caregivers. A fall can happen anytime and anywhere. Although a medical alert monitoring system can’t prevent a fall, it may be able to limit the degree of injury or more importantly, save you or your loved one’s life with a simple push of a button.