For many people, falling during the icy season of the year does not sound like a huge problem. However, for senior citizens, falls are becoming one of most feared problems to face. Over the last few years, the number of people over 65 who have passed away after a fall has taken a sharp uptick according to The New York Times. When you add in the fact that most Americans are living longer, the number of those that experience fatal or near-fatal falls is sure to continue rising. What do senior citizens, their friends, and family need to know about falls and the injuries they cause that can do major damage and possibly cause death? Here are 5 things that you need to know now:
The Number 1 Cause Of Fatal Injuries For Seniors Is Falls
The CDC states that falls are now the number one cause of fatal injuries, as well as non-fatal injuries, for those 65 and over. For many people, this statement from the CDC may surprise you, but with the number of Baby Boomers that are now 65 or older, and the fact that Americans are living longer, it is easy to understand.
In 2012, Almost 24,000 Seniors Died From Falls
Yes, you read that right: almost 24,00 senior citizens died from a fall in 2012, nearly double the number of seniors who suffered from fatal falls or complications from a fall in 2002. During a fall, seniors can suffer injuries that can cause lasting problems or even be fatal. Seeing the sharp rise in numbers in just ten years shows that this is not something to ignore for any one of any age.
Also In 2012, Over 2.4 Million Seniors Went To The ER For A Fall
Read that again: over 2.4 million seniors had to be treated in the emergency room for a fall in 2012. To top it off, this number does not include those that were treated for injuries that were related to a fall. The number of seniors who had to be taken to the ER for a fall has jumped by 50% over numbers from 2002.
Falling Hazards Are Being Addressed By Senior Care Facilities
With the rise in numbers of seniors who have suffered fatal falls or injuries from a fall, more senior care facilities are taking steps to protect those they care for. Some of these steps include floor lighting, illuminated pathways, impact-resistant flooring, and balance improving exercises for seniors. If you have a loved one that is living in a senior care facility, make sure that you inquire if the facility is taking these steps to protect those in their care.
Falls May Be Grounds For A Personal Injury Suit
Some falls may be caused by the negligence of someone else, such as a negligent property owner that does not keep their property in a reasonably safe condition and any known hazards on the premises. For these cases, a personal injury lawsuit may help to recover lost wages, medical bills, and damages for injuries that your loved one sustained in their fall. If your loved one passed away from a fall, you may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
If you or a loved one has suffered a fall, contact our offices for a free consultation (918) 582 – 2500.
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