Unfortunately, while slip and fall accidents are some of the most common which happen to individuals today, slip and fall accidents for the elderly are even more common. These accidents occur all across the country. In fact, according to research put together by the National Floor Safety Institute, about one million people every year visit the emergency room after suffering injuries from a slip and fall accident.
A slip and fall accident can impact anyone, but the elderly definitely face the greatest risk. This can be a result of balance and mobility problems that are prevalent among the elderly, as well as the difficulties they face in recovering after an accident. An elderly individual is more likely to be seriously hurt or even suffer fatal wounds when they slip and fall.
Some of the injuries associated with a slip and fall accident may continue to impact you for years to come. That’s why it’s important to get medical attention as soon as possible so that you can begin a proper treatment regimen. If your elderly loved one has sustained injuries from a fall, you may play a critical role in helping them heal, but you may also be concerned about filing a personal injury lawsuit.
Causes of Slip and Fall Accidents
The risk of falling and sustaining an injury only increases as a person ages. This increased risk is a significant one that warrants extra safety and precaution for anyone working with elderly adults or serving as staff in a nursing home.
According to the National Floor Safety Institute, every year 30 percent of people above the age of 65 suffer some type of a fall and among those individuals, at least 10 percent will sustain a serious injury. When an accident happens, it can take longer for an elderly person with health issues to heal properly than it would for someone who is younger.
There are many reasons for this increased risk such as health problems that impact vision or balance, poor muscle tone, loss of bone mass, decreased strength, and diminished flexibility.
Falls can happen anywhere, but they are most likely to happen indoors. Environmental hazards within your living space could present a significant risk for an elderly individual, but they are not the only cause of accidents. Exterior locations can also be problematic for elderly individuals, including:
- Slippery surfaces
- Cluttered walkways
- Cracks in sidewalks
- Abrupt edges on driveways and sidewalks
- Stairs with insufficient handrails
- Slippery floors
- Changes in surface levels or types
- Unsecured rugs
- Appliance cords in the walking path
Injuries From These Accidents
Some of the most common injuries impacting elderly individuals after a slip and fall include brain injuries, bone fractures, broken bones, spinal cord injuries, or hip fractures. These can all be serious injuries that can cause months of physical therapy or even surgery. That is why these slip and fall accidents post such a serious risk for elderly individuals.
In some cases, a slip and fall accident is purely an accident and nothing could have been done to prevent it. Unfortunately, there are also many accidents that were completely preventable but were caused by another person’s negligence or recklessness. When negligence contributes to a slip and fall accident, an injured senior and his or her family should contact a slip and fall accident lawyer right away.
When someone else’s negligence is at fault for the injuries, you may be able to file a personal injury claim and obtain compensation to help you move on with your life and recover from your injuries.