OHSU

Seniors

Fall Prevention among Older Adults

Fall Facts

  • Falls are a major health problem for adults 65 and older
  • About one third of falls are preventable - falls are not an inevitable part of aging
  • Approximately 15% of seniors in Oregon reported falling in the previous 3 months
  • Group-based exercise such as tai chi may reduce the risk of falls by as much as 55%

Risk Factors for Falls

  • previous history of falls
  • delirium
  • use of multiple medications or improper dosages
  • recently changed medications
  • use of medications that cause drowsiness
  • a history of hypertension
  • impaired vision
  • a history of low or unstable blood sugar
  • arthritis
  • stroke
  • excessive use of alcohol

Prevention Strategies

  • Begin a regular exercise program
  • Make your home safer. (Try the home safety checklist)
  • Have your health care provider review your medications.
  • Have your vision checked regularly