One out of every three senior citizens, or those over the age of 64, are involved in a fall accident every year. Falls can lead to serious and debilitating injuries, including hip and other bone fractures and serious head injuries. Too often, a fall results in death, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The truth of the matter is that falls are a serious health problem, but they’re largely preventable.
Our Asheville personal injury lawyers understand that only half of the senior citizens who are in a fall accident talk to their healthcare provider. For these elderly residents, falls continue to be the number one cause of accidental death. These accidents are also the number one cause of injuries and hospital stays for trauma. As a matter of fact, there were close to 2.5 million older adults who were injured and then treated in an emergency room in 2010. More than 660,000 were admitted into the hospital. All of these falls cost about $30 billion in direct medical costs.
What Happens in a Fall Accident?
-About 30 percent of people in fall accidents suffer some serious injury, like head trauma, hip or other bone fractures and even lacerations. It’s these injuries that make it tougher for these older residents to get around and they may also lead to additional medical complications.
-Fall accidents are the number one cause for Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI). In just 2000, these injuries accounted for more than 45 percent of deadly falls among senior citizens.
-Most of the fractures sustained by older adults happen during fall accidents. Some of the most common fractures occur to the upper arm, the pelvis, the forearm, the hip, the spine and the hands.
-Many of those who suffer a fall accident oftentimes develop a fear of falling again. This fear can cause someone to limit their daily activities and can also cause a reduction in physical fitness, which will actually increase their risks of falling again.
If you’re a business owner or a landlord or you’re a member of your community’s homeowners association (HOA), you have an obligation to make sure that the premises are safe for everyone, especially older adults. There are many businesses that cater to senior citizens who call North Carolina home. Keeping our elderly free from fall hazards doesn’t happen by accident.
To help to prevent these kinds of accidents, make sure you’re keeping up with your daily exercise. Get your eyes check periodically and keep your home and work areas well lit. Take a look at your home. Are there fall hazards? Make sure walkways are clear, cords are not lying around the floor, wet spots are cleaned immediately and walking areas are well lit. You should also talk with your doctor about the medications and prescriptions you’re on and their effect on your risks for a fall accident.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a fall accident, contact the personal injury attorneys at Lee Law Offices P.A. to discuss your loved one’s rights. Call 1-800-887-1965 for a free consultation.
More Blog Entries:
North Carolina Nursing Home Scrutinized for Lack of Care, North Carolina Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, October 2, 2012