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Older Adult Fall Prevention

Falls are the leading cause of fatal and non-fatal injuries for older adults in the United States.

Risk Factors


There are several risk factors that make an older adult vulnerable to falling.

Risk factors include:

  • lower body weakness
  • difficulties with walking and balance
  • inner ear issues
  • vision problems
  • medicines
  • home hazards

It's important that we provide the necessary information and resources to help prevent older adult falls.

Older Adult Falls Myth vs. Reality

How to prevent falls

1. Exercise to improve your strength and balance 

Stay active to keep your legs stronger, improve your balance, and lower your chances of falling. Talk to your doctor about an exercise program that's best for you.

2. Have your eyes checked every year 

As people age, the risk for vision loss and eye-related diseases increases. Consequently, your risk of falling also increases. People with vision problems, such as glaucoma or cataracts, are twice as likely to fall compared to those without visual impairments. Have your vision checked once a year by your doctor, and make sure your prescription is up to date. 

3. Keep your home safe 

More than half of all falls occur at home. Remove tripping hazards from stairs and walkways. Home modifications such as grab bars and non-slip mats in bathrooms, handrails for the stairs, and improved lighting can help prevent potential falls. 

4. Check your medications and side effects 

Talk to your doctor to review your medications and their potential side effects. Some medications can make you dizzy, sleepy, or increase your risk of falling. 

5. Talk to your doctor

Have your doctor evaluate your risk for falling. Tell them if you have fallen in the past year, or have any fears about falling. They can perform health assessments, to help you maintain your health, mobility, and independence. They may recommend walking aids to help you remain fall-free. 

How we're keeping you safe

BPHC's Injury Prevention Program, in partnership with the Alzheimer's Association, has worked to find effective methods of incorporating brain health into our framework. Cognitive health is an important factor in healthy aging. Those living with dementia are amongst the most vulnerable. To strengthen the work we do in this area, we created a multi-year action plan. The plan brings attention to healthy aging issues, expands our collaborative efforts with local organizations, and develops and distributes resource materials. We use the Healthy Brain Initiative's State and Local Public Health Partnerships to Address Dementia: The 2018-2023 Road Map as a guide. 

See our case study.

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