Seniors need to understand how to avoid falls

Jasmine Phu

January 16, 2012

Seniors need to understand how to avoid fallsTeaching seniors how to avoid falls can be crucial as to how well they are able to age in place and for how long. Although many elders understand the risks of suffering a fall – the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports one in three seniors falls annually – some may not know why they fall or how to improve their homes, the Bangkok Post reports.

Dr. Boonyawat Charnopas, an orthopaedist at the Pattana Medical Center Clinic, told the news source that over a two-month span, he has seen more elderly patients at his office for bone and joint treatments of fall-related injuries.

According to Charnopas, many of his patients suffer from osteoporosis and don't know about it because the condition doesn't have any real symptoms. Most don't realize they have the joint disorder until they are checked for it, or until they suffer a fall.

Friends or relatives of a loved one might want to start stocking up a parent's cupboards with healthy foods rich in vitamin D and calcium to help reduce the effects of osteoporosis. They might also want to add more lighting to dim hallways, encourage a loved one to work out and even install a medical alert system for safety in case of a fall.

"Ensure that your home is always safe," Dr. Charnopas warns elderly readers. "Nothing is wrong with trying to prevent it. Remember that prevention is always better than cure."