Elderly adults experience a lot of age-related health issues that definitely affect their quality of life. One of the most impactful injuries they can have is a hip fracture. Not only are hip fractures serious, but they can actually be life-threatening to seniors due to additional complications from the break as well as the surgery needed to fix the broken bones. Many seniors go from living independently to relying on family and senior care assistance after a hip fracture.
The likelihood of a person breaking their hip definitely increases with age. The body, particularly the bones, tends to weaken as it grows older. Bone density changes as the years go by and they can become weak and brittle. This makes them more susceptible to breaks when they experience an impact. Seniors with weakened bones frequently sustain fractures, even in the thick bones of the hip. Women are more likely to break their hip because they have the bone disease osteoporosis at greater rates than men.
Most hip fractures are the result of a slip and fall accident. Elderly adults are subject to numerous health issues and problems that increase the chances of a slip and fall. Some of the most common contributors include poor vision, loss of balance due to vertigo, dizziness from medications or high blood pressure and slow reflexes, like tripping over something and not being able to regain their balance. All these can contribute to a slip and fall accident that results in a broken hip in an aging adult. Other causes of a broken hip include things like a car accident or other high impact accident.
Strong bones have plenty of vitamin D and calcium, so aging adults that haven’t had eating habits that are particularly nutritious may be at risk for a broken hip. Some diseases and disorders can leach these important vitamins and minerals from the bones, causing them to weaken. Certain chronic conditions can also lead to weakened bones, such as an overactive thyroid or Crohn’s disease. Finally, some medications, like prednisone, can weaken the bones if they are taken over long periods of time.
Finally, family caregivers need to do some work to make sure the elderly relative’s living space is clutter-free and safe for foot traffic. Things like loose rugs, slippery tile, clutter and poor lighting can all cause an elderly person to have a slip and fall accident and break their hip. Caregivers should also make sure other family members, senior care aides and others also pay attention to the walkways of the living space. If the elderly person is not very steady on their feet, they should be given a cane or a walker. Seniors can also work with their doctor, a physical therapist or an occupational therapist about what they can do to feel steadier on their feet and avoid falling.
Family caregivers that are worried about their elderly relatives can do a lot to help them reduce the risk of breaking a hip and changing their quality of life forever.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Home Care in Trussville, AL, please call the caring staff at Fruit of the Spirit Home Care (205) 617-1602.