A slip and fall is serious business. While many people do not experience major injuries after falling, there are some individuals who suffer a head injury or break one or more of their bones. Older individuals in particular are vulnerable to health risks, disability and even death from a fall.
If you wonder about the effects a fall could have on your elderly parent or other older relatives, it may benefit you to understand what may happen to an older person after falling.
Serious health problems and death
Because older individuals tend to be in frail condition, even a slight fall could cause trauma that may necessitate a stay in the hospital. Common fall injuries include bone fractures and damage to soft tissue. Such injuries may lead to a major decline in health. According to Aging Care, one study found that fall victims older than 70 years old were three times more likely to die following a fall.
Acquiring an infection
An open wound can expose the body to germs and bacteria. Even if your loved one suffered a fall but received treatment in a timely manner, an infection is still a possibility. Since seniors generally need longer time to recover, your elderly relative might require more time in a hospital and then a rehab facility. This could increase the risk of contracting a hospital-caused infection like a urinary tract infection.
Sometimes an older person manages a physical recovery from a fall but loses confidence in being able to live life without falling again. Many seniors experience anxiety following a fall and reduce their activities so they do not risk another incident. Unfortunately, cutting down on activity reduces exercise and can cause the health of a senior to decline.
While there are steps you and your family can take to avoid a fall, property owners have their responsibilities as well. In the event you or a loved one suffer injury from a fall, an accountable party may be responsible for damages.