While there are certain hazards that can make just about anyone in California fall and hurt his or herself, today’s older Americans face an especially high risk of suffering a serious injury due to a fall. At the Law Offices of Christian J. Amendt, we recognize that factors including slippery floors, dimly lit interiors and uneven pavement pose threats to everyone, but that older Americans may be less likely than younger ones to be able to easily avoid these and other obstructions.
According to the National Council on Aging, so many seniors are taking serious falls these days that falls are now the leading cause of deadly and non-fatal injuries among those 65 and over. In fact, one out of every four Americans within this age group are falling at least once a year, leading to more than 800,000 annual hospitalizations and in excess of 27,000 deaths.
Just why is this population especially prone to falling and suffering serious injuries as a result? Often, older Americans have certain risk factors they are grappling with that make them less stable on their feet. For example, many older Americans lose strength and flexibility as their level of physical fitness decreases, and this can make it harder for them to support themselves when, say, going up stairs or trying to navigate parking lots.
Additionally, vision tends to decline with age, and this can make older people less likely to see loose wires, uneven carpeting, pools of water on the floor and similar hazards that can cause them to take a tumble. While falls among seniors are taking a physical toll on this population, they are also taking a financial one on the nation. Estimates suggest that the overall costs of falls among this age group may reach $67.7 billion by next year. You can find more on this topic on our webpage.