You probably have already heard that as an adult over the age of 65, you are in the age group most likely to fall, and also the group most likely to suffer injuries that require medical assistance at a Georgia hospital. We at Cromartie Law have often assisted seniors in taking the right actions after being injured in a fall.
The U.S. National Institute on Aging recognizes the many fall dangers that older adults face, and the agency provides many recommendations for helping you avoid them:
- Exercise regularly to maintain muscle mass, bone density and strength.
- Schedule hearing and vision tests regularly.
- Abstain from or limit your alcohol intake.
- Make sure you understand all the side effects of your medication.
- If you need an assistive device such as a cane or walker, use it.
Even though you may take every precaution to avoid falling, there are some circumstances that are dangerous for anyone. A slick surface, worn carpet or an object in your path could send you to the floor, and the outcome could be permanently life-changing. Here are some things to do immediately following the fall:
- Give yourself a moment to recover from the shock of falling.
- Assess your body to determine if anything hurts.
- Call 911 right away if you feel that you may be injured.
- Do not be afraid to ask someone for help if you cannot get up on your own.
If you feel confident that you have suffered no serious injuries, you should still take your time getting up. Standing too quickly could lead to another fall or exacerbate an injury that you have not discovered yet. Roll to your side and pause while your blood pressure and your body adjust to the new position. From there, get to your hands and knees. If there is a sturdy surface such as a chair nearby, crawl to it and use it to assist you in rising to your knees, and then sit down for a few moments to re-assess your physical condition. Common injuries from a fall include fractures, especially hip fractures, and traumatic brain injuries.
More information about what to do after a slip and fall is available on our webpage.