What makes older people fall?

Falls and the injuries they create are a major problem for older people.

Figures from Australia’s Department of Health and Ageing tell us that one in three people aged over 65 fall once per year, with ten per cent of these falls leading to serious injury.

When you add dementia as another factor, the risk of falls and serious injuries skyrockets with 80 per cent of people in dementia specific residential care units falling at least once each year.

So what are the factors that increase the risk of falling among older people?

The Department reveals that many health issues contribute directly to the increased risk of falling, including:

  • poor balance
  • reduced muscle strength
  • dizziness
  • reduced eyesight
  • continence problems
  • some medications

Along with health factors, the Department highlights a number of environmental factors that cause concern, including:

  • poor lighting
  • slippery or uneven surfaces
  • loose mats
  • cords across floors
  • slippery steps

For people with dementia, the Department warns they are at the greatest risk of falling because dementia brings its own factors such as:

  • behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia
  • reduced monitoring of the environment
  •  impulsiveness • lack of awareness

The Department refers to things that can “reduce the impact of these issues” and that is where cura1 technology has a vital role to play.

- Michael Burton

“cura” – latin word meaning “care”

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