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Falls Prevention for Older Adults

Know the Risks

Falls threaten the health and independence of older Pennsylvanians and the risks associated with a fall are not to be overlooked.

    • Almost 30% of Pennsylvanians age 65 and older have reported a fall in the past 12 months
    • Less than 50% of all falls are reported
    • 20% of falls cause a serious injury
    • 95% of hip fractures are caused by falls
    • Falls are the most common cause of traumatic brain injuries
    • Falls are the number one cause of death from injury among older Americans

Take Steps to Prevent Falls

Falls are not just a normal part of getting older — most falls can be prevented and there are simple steps you can take to reduce your risk.

Ask Your Doctor
    • To evaluate your risk for falling
    • To review your prescriptions and over the counter medications
    • To evaluate your need for calcium or vitamin D supplements
    • To review any issues that are causing you to experience periods of confusion or difficulty remembering
Make Your Home Safer
    • Get rid of things you could trip over in your home
    • Add grab bars inside and outside your tub or shower and next to the toilet
    • Put railings on both sides of stairs
    • Make sure your home – inside and around the exterior - is well lit
Live Healthier
    • Participate in strength and balance exercises
    • Eat a healthy balanced diet
    • Have your eyes checked
    • Have your hearing checked
    • Check with your podiatrist if you are having problems with your feet

The Pennsylvania Department of Aging offers a fall risk screening and prevention program to adults 50 years of age and older. Visit Healthy Steps for Older Adults to learn more.

If you are 60 years of age or older there are free or reduced-cost falls prevention services available to you. Contact your local Area Agency on Aging for more information on helping you to remain fall free.