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I Fell... Now What?  Fall Prevention and Treatment

I Fell... Now What? Fall Prevention and Treatment

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Generally one in three adults over the age of 65 who live at home may experience at least one fall a year. Of these, about half will fall more frequently resulting in pain, injury, and a loss of confidence. Luckily, we know what to do in the case of a fall and are here to help.

See a Doctor

After a fall, it is most important to see a doctor. You may feel fine, however, there are several injuries that do not instantly show symptoms. It could take days or weeks until symptoms become visible, and by that time injuries can worsen.

Reducing Pain and Swelling

If you can’t get to the doctor right away, ice will help to reduce pain and swelling. Here’s what to do:

  • Apply ice or cold packs immediately to prevent or minimize swelling
  • Apply the ice or cold pack for 10 to 20 minutes, 3 or more times a day
  • Use ice for the first 3-4 days and then switch to heat once the inflammation is gone

The heat will help to increase blood flow. In response, the bruising gets reabsorbed back into your system at a quicker rate.

Safety Tips

Here are a few final safety tips and products that can be used to reduce the risk of falls and injury in your home:

  • Install a grab bar in your bathroom to reduce the risk of falls while getting in and out of the bathtub and shower
  • Falls can occur while stretching to grab out of reach items. Use a reacher to reduce the chances of these injuries and grab items more easily
  • In the case of a dangerous fall, the Guardian Alert 911 allows you to call “911” and speak directly to an operator during your emergency

References
Kernisan, Leslie (2016, March). 5 Ways Geriatricians Prevent Falls. aplaceformom.com. Retrieved on http://bit.ly/2o3RToO

Medical Disclaimer: The information provided on this site, including text, graphics, images and other material, are for informational purposes only and are not intended to substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other healthcare professional with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition.