Safety in the Balance: Preventing Falls and Injuries in Elders

By Kleyman, Paul | Aging Today, July/August 2008 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Safety in the Balance: Preventing Falls and Injuries in Elders


Kleyman, Paul, Aging Today


"Mom had a fall." Those words don't have the jarring drama of a diagnosis of cancer or Alzheimer's disease, but they are spoken every day across the United States in the quavering voice of a middle-aged daughter or son.

The consequences can be devastating, according to the Injury Center website of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Between 20% and 30% of falls among elders result in moderate to severe injuries, from nasty bruises or broken teeth to hip fractures or head traumas.

Falls, says CDC, are the leading cause of injury or deaths among U.S. elders age 65 or older. "Each year in the United States, nearly one third of older adults experience a fall," reports the Injury Center website.

CDC continues, "In 2005, more than 15,800people 65 years or older died of fall-related injuries. Another 1.8 million were treated in emergency departments for nonfatal injuries related to falls." (To learn more about falls among older adults, visit the CDC website at www.cdc.gov/ ncipc/duip/preventadultfalls.htm.)

Preventing falls in older adults would seem to be a no-brainer, even on purely economic grounds, but relatively few experts, advocates and policymakers have devoted much brain power to this deceptively complex issue. Like other aspects of Healthcare and long-term care for elders, the task of fall prevention reaches into homes, institutions, services, agencies and disciplines from medicine to architecture. In fact, a gathering movement to focus on this sleeper issue-a pervasive problem with as little cause for immediate public concern as the slow melting of glaciers-is forming fall-prevention coalitions and bringing together experts and service providers from many disciplines.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Safety in the Balance: Preventing Falls and Injuries in Elders
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?