Every year, over two million older adults are seen in emergency rooms for fall-related injuries. Of those people, up to 250,000 are hospitalized for hip fractures, which usually occur when the individual falls sideways as opposed to falling forward.
There are many reasons why falls occur in the first place. For example, weakened lower body strength and a lack of overall balance can increase the probability of a future fall. When a lack of vigor and balance are determined to have contributed to a fall, this is a call to improve your loved one’s overall health with light exercise and stretching to help improve their balance and stability to avoid future falls. Falls can also provide warning signs of more serious underlying issues that may require immediate attention.
If your aging parent or older loved one has fallen, it is likely that he or she is afraid of falling again and, unfortunately, this fear can lead to decreased physical activity that may actually increase their risk of a second fall.
In addition to proactive practices to help avoid a fall in the first place, there are many resources available to help your loved one recover after a fall. If your aging loved one is in a hospital for rehabilitation, you can greatly aid in their recovery by helping manage their post-hospital and rehabilitation care with in-home support. Whether or not you are challenged by distance, Home Care Assistance can help you plan for post-hospital recovery by coordinating with case managers, discharge planners and rehabilitation specialists and matching your loved one with an experienced and compassionate caregiver so that they can transition and recover at home with comfort and ease.
When preparing for your aging parent or loved one’s return home, assess the environment for obstacles that may pose tripping hazards. If your loved one is not mobile, you may need to remove rugs and furniture to accommodate crutches or a wheelchair. Are temporary ramps needed? If construction is needed, even for temporary alterations, be sure to work with an occupational therapist and hire a qualified contractor.
Continuing home care services will help your loved one achieve a full and successful fall recovery while reducing avoidable hospital readmissions. A caregiver can provide transportation to all follow-up appointments with doctors, assistance with meal preparation, companionship and more. Your loved one may have concerns about the possible loss of independence and an ongoing fear of falls, but a trained caregiver can gradually help them on the path back to recovery, providing essential physical assistance but also the emotional support often needed to assuage any fears about future falls.
Caregivers from Home Care Assistance can provide vital support after a fall, turning a stressful situation into a smooth and worry-free recovery. Contact one of our Client Care Managers at 1-866-454-4846 to see how our caregivers can help provide your loved one with care at home after recovery from a fall or any other adverse health event.