Amedisys, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMED) today shared key tips and facts about the importance of managing fall risks for seniors as part of its education efforts during September, which is Falls Prevention Month.
“As the number one cause for hospitalization and emergency care among the elderly, falls can lead to potentially severe injuries such as hip fractures and head traumas, and can even increase the risk of early death,” said Ted Kimbrell, senior vice president of therapy services at Amedisys. “Our falls prevention education, physical and occupational therapy programs such as Balanced for Life and falls risk assessments all help prevent falls in the home that is crucial to senior health and independence.”
To prevent falls, Amedisys recommends the following:
- If you’re feeling dizzy, sit down for a few minutes. Symptoms such as dizziness, unsteady gait, light-headedness, or loss of equilibrium increase the chances for a fall
- Wear sturdy shoes and/or non-skid socks
- Keep your home well-lit, placing lights in hallways, stairways, and bathrooms
- Clear walkways of clutter, electrical cords, etc.
- Get rid of throw rugs or use double-sided tape to secure them down
- Use handrails on stairways and in bathrooms
- Use non-slip rubber mats in the bathtub and shower
- Clean up spills once they happen
- Know about any side-effects of medication that could potentially lead to a fall
- Exercise to improve strength, balance, and coordination (always check with your doctor before starting a new exercise routine)
- If you live in a region that gets wintery weather, consider putting special cleats on your shoes to prevent you from slipping on the snow and ice
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC):
- One in three adults age 65 and older falls each year; this increases to one in two for those 80 and over
- The cost of fall-related injuries is projected to reach nearly $55 billion by 2020—CDC’s National Center for Injury and Prevention Control
- The majority of falls take place in the home
Amedisys encourages the elderly, their caregivers and everyone to take simple precautions in their homes all year round. Falls have serious health and lifestyle consequences, avoiding them will help people live healthier, more independent lives.