Risk of Falling for Mature People
Some Headline Facts:
* In cities: older people over the age of 65 have 30% chance of fall each year. This number will increase to 50% for the older people over the age of 80.
* Older people, who fall once, then have 2 to 3 times more chance of falling again within the next year.
* 20 - 30% suffer injuries that reduce mobility & independence and increase the risk of premature death.
* A follow up carried out in one year indicated that: 20% of frequent fallers were either in hospital, full time care or have died.
* 10% of falls result in a serious injury, 5% in a fracture than a hip, and 1.5% in a hip fracture in age higher than 65, rising to 3% on age over 80.
Even if there are no serious injuries resulting from a fall there may be emotional consequences such as loss of confidence and increasing social isolation.
Falls among the elderly is a potentially hidden problem - it is estimated that 75 to 80% of falls are never reported.
Falls are not an inevitable consequence of ageing and much can be done to reduce the risk of falling.
If you have had a fall, are concerned about falling or know someone who meets these descriptions then contact your GP.
Further information from: Ted Poulter, NHS Wandsworth: 020 8812 7840
An American website, which you may find useful:
What Are Ways to Prevent Falls and Related Fractures?
Fast Facts: An Easy-to-Read Series of Publications for the Public
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases
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