Falls are the second leading cause of traumatic injuries in the Portneuf Medical Center (PMC) Emergency Department (ED). Every year, approximately one third of older adults experience a fall, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Emergency medicine physicians regularly treat patients, many age 65 or older, with life-threatening injuries associated with falls.
“Fall prevention is an important issue,” says Greg Vickers, Trauma Program Manager at PMC. “With the number of traumas we treat from falls, we want to raise community awareness, because they are easily preventable.”
An ounce of prevention may save you an unnecessary visit to the ED. Try:
- Adding lighting to rooms and walkways, such as lamps and nightlights
- Installing grab bars in bathrooms
- Installing handrails on both sides of stairs
- Placing a nonskid bath mat inside the bathtub or shower
- Removing excess clutter, especially on floors
- Using a walker or cane for stability