Falls can be very common with elderly people, in fact, some sources suggest it could be as many as 25% of older people who endure falls each year. This is understandable as many elderly people can find it harder to walk, might be visually impaired, or have other health issues relating to movement. However, whilst it is common, it is a serious issue and when it comes to elderly people falling over or falling out of bed, it’s important that you are always careful or call for help right away to avoid any unnecessary damage or pain to the person.
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What Should I Do if an Elderly Person Falls?
Firstly, it’s important to gauge how bad the fall has been or how much pain has been caused by the fall – if an elderly person has fallen over but can get up with your assistance and no pain, then there may be no need to worry. If there are no signs of injury, then offer to assist the person in getting back on their feet. It’s crucial that you only assist an elderly person who has fallen and not try to do it for them. If there are any signs of this being a struggle then family caregivers should ask for help at this point. Sometimes caregivers can pick up elderly people too quickly or in an awkward way, which can lead to dropping them again, so refrain from doing it all by yourself if you can. If an elderly person struggles to get up after a fall then they should see a doctor on the same day.
The Aftermath of an Elderly Person Falling
The best thing to do is ask the person who’s fallen where they hurt and check for any bruises, cuts, or pains. Remember to stay calm as the patient is the one who could be hurting and be stressed themselves, staying calm and collected will help them feel more at ease with the situation.
If you are not sure how to examine or they have unexplainable pain it is essential you call an emergency number straight away and wait for assistance.
Ask the person who has fallen to roll onto their side and lift themselves up onto their hands and knees so they can slowly adjust and rotate their body. If they have sore knees, place a towel below them so they can use it as a soft cushion to get up from. Please make sure they are doing the heavy work to lift themselves up as it will be a good indicator as to how badly they have hurt themself.
After that, you can ensure they’re sitting upright on a chair until they feel recovered enough to stand and can address any pains they may have gotten from the fall. Contact a doctor if they are in pain.
Please Don’t Keep Your Falls a Secret
Sources suggest that even though roughly 1 in 4 falls, less than half of elderly people who do fall will tell their doctor. If you are an elderly person who has fallen over, please do not shy away from telling your loved ones, carers, and/or doctors. It is always good to be honest as everybody who cares for your wellbeing can help you decide whether or not you need extra help or care around the house. As well as this, it is also true that the risks of falling increase with each fall – statistically after falling once you double your chances of falling again – so it is worth mentioning these details to your loved ones so that they can help reduce the risk of a fall happening again.
Preventing Falls for the Elderly
Trying to prevent falls for elderly people is important, so installing rails around the home, helping them up when needed are all suitable steps in trying to prevent falls in the elderly. Additionally, you can suggest a walking frame and/or a walking stick to help them maintain their balance as well.
How to Keep the Elderly From Falling Out of Bed
Unfortunately, falling out of bed is quite common among elderly people. This kind of fall often leads to severe injuries and it’s particularly dangerous if it happens frequently. Creating a barrier using pool noodles or body pillows is an effective way to prevent seniors from rolling off the bed. Another option is to purchase a special mattress or mattress cover with a raised perimeter as this can also help. Small, non-restrictive bed rails are highly effective to prevent falls out of bed and can also provide additional support for seniors when getting out of bed. Regular vision checks and reviewing medications are also an important part of the mix as there could be another reason this is happening if it is starting to become frequent.
Need additional support for falls? Check out this article from the NHS here. If you’re struggling for care in the home then please contact us here at Care24Seven and we will do everything to help you and your loved ones today.