Fall Prevention Reduces Risks of Traumatic Brain Injuries in Elderly Adults
Though traumatic brain injuries are commonly related to sports injuries and car accidents, TBI-related injuries are also a unique health concern for older adults. In fact, people above the age of 75 have the highest rates of hospitalizations and deaths due to traumatic brain injuries because their bodies cannot recover as efficiently as younger patients. Since falling down is the leading cause of TBI among older adults, family members and caregivers of senior citizens can help significantly lower the risk of TBI by working to prevent falls in the first place.
The Best Techniques to Prevent Falls
Many different strategies should be used to help older adults avoid dangerous falls that could lead to traumatic brain injury. First, encourage exercise on a regular basis. This doesn’t mean that your 80-year-old mother needs to jog on the treadmill, but gentle exercises like Tai Chi that improve balance and coordination can equip the body with the strength necessary to remain steady while walking and moving.
It’s also a wise idea to make the home surroundings safer. Even small details can cause or prevent falls. You can remove anything from the floor level that might cause tripping, like throw rugs and ground-level decorations. Reorganize the cabinets so that everything is within easy reach and a step stool is not needed. Install grab bars in the bathroom and along all staircases for extra support. Even adding brighter lights around the house can make a big difference in preventing falls.
Finally, take the older adult in your care to the eye doctor. Common age-related vision problems like glaucoma and cataracts could be making regular activities more difficult, and an exam can uncover any vision conditions and improve sight in order to minimize the risk of falling.
If you care for an older adult, following these steps will dramatically lower the risk of a traumatic brain injury due to a fall. However, if you do notice that the senior citizen in your care is showing signs of a TBI like slurred speech, loss of coordination, trouble concentrating, and confusion, seek medical attention immediately and then turn to NeuroInternational in Sarasota, Florida for rehabilitation support. With the state’s largest and most diversified neurological treatment team, NeuroInternational can provide everything an older adult needs to regain the best quality of life. Call (941) 870-4129 to learn more.