There are many health conditions that contribute to falls.
• Diseases of muscles, bones and joints such as arthritis and osteoporosis
• Heart disease or high or low blood pressure
• Metabolic diseases such as diabetes
• Lung disease such as emphysema or bronchitis
• Neurological and nervous system disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis or stroke
Given that these conditions may present differently among seniors, annual medical assessments are an important aspect of staying independent and to ensure ongoing evaluation and treatment of conditions that contribute to falls and fall-related injury.
• Have regular check-ups with your doctor to help prevent worsening of any condition you may have and to keep you as active as possible.
• Seek medical treatment if you feel unwell. Having a short-term illness such as a urinary tract infection, diarrhoea and/or chest infection can increase your risk risk of falling.
• Ask family, friends, neighbours or local services to assist with things like shopping, cooking and personal care if you are unwell.
• Talk with a health care professional about incontinence. Loss of bladder or bowel control, frequency (going to the toilet often) and urgency (going in a rush) all increase the risk for a fall, especially at night.
• Discuss your health conditions with a specialist who can advise on how to manage your condition and provide information on how to reduce your fall risk.