Falls can be dangerous at any age, but if you suffer a fall as a senior citizen, you could be at greater risk for a fatal injury. Traumatic brain injuries and hip fractures, both of which can be extremely serious, often result from falls.
Commercial and residential property owners have a responsibility to keep the premises safe and protect you from falls during your visit. However, there are also things you can do to prevent falls.
Talk to your doctor
Certain medical conditions can increase your fall risk, as can medications that make you dizzy. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that you ask your doctor to review your medications and evaluate your fall risk. You should also ask about vitamin D supplements, which do not prevent you from falling but can help reduce your risk for bone fracture.
Have an eye exam
An inability to see obstacles in your path makes falling more likely. To be sure that your corrective lens prescription is up to date, you should have an eye exam at least once a year.
Maybe the problem is not an out-of-date prescription but progressive or bifocal lenses that correct for different distances. This can make objects appear closer or farther away while you are walking. Another pair of glasses that only corrects for distance may be better for outdoor activities.
Improve strength and balance
Ask your doctor to recommend exercises that you can use to improve your balance and make your legs stronger. Yoga or tai chi are good examples. Better strength and balance can reduce your risk of falling.
If you do fall, you should report it to your doctor. Many people do not because they sustain no obvious injury. However, falling once increases the risk that it will happen again.