Arthritis and the Risk of Falls with the Elderly
Alert1 members have expressed concerns about aging in place and arthritis. Many
older adults are plagued by chronic joint pain. Although you can temporarily
relieve pain with a senior aspirin
regimen, there's no official cure for arthritis. Do you know an older adult
that has arthritis? Have you noticed any symptoms of impaired mobility with your aging loved ones? If so, Alert1's fall
detection system can help protect your senior when the unthinkable happens.
How Arthritis Impacts Older Adults
to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), arthritis is inflammation of the
joints caused by the breakdown of cartilage. This cartilage is what protects
bones from rubbing against one another. There are a number of different
forms of arthritis. The three common forms of arthritis in older adults are osteoarthritis,
rheumatoid arthritis, or gout. Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic, autoimmune
disease that can do a fair amount of damage.
The most common symptoms of arthritis are joint pain, swelling, stiffness and
reduced mobility - all of which can increase the risk of falling. The U.S.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that one in three older adults
over 65 will fall each year. That risk increases for older adults who are
living with arthritis. Arthritis ACT, a non-profit awareness group in
Australia, reports that the risk of falling is 2.4 times more likely for people
who have arthritis. This is due to poor balance, increased pain levels and a
loss of strength.
Fall Risks and Prevention Tips for Arthritis Sufferers
Alert1, we want to reduce the risk of senior falls. That
starts by reducing hazards in the home that
could lead to falls. Some manageable risk factors to prevent falls include:
- Poor lighting-Be sure to replace lightbulbs or add night
lights in high traffic areas around the home. This is especially important
for older adults with impaired vision.
- Unsafe stairways-One popular prevention method for
seniors is to install a lift. The stairway chair lift is a simple way to manage
fall risk for seniors.
- Missing handrails-Hand rails are extremely helpful for the unsteady
senior. Install handrails in the problem areas around the home for your loved
one to keep a firm grip and footing.
- Improperly labeled medicines-Improper doses of
prescribed drugs can lead to potential senior falls or greater health
consequences. With our Amy medication dispenser, your older adult can keep
track of their regularly scheduled medicine regimen.
- Clutter-Keeping walkways clear and clutter free is
essential in preventing senior falls. A clear path will ensure that your
loved one is able to move about the home more freely.
- Poorly designed furniture, including unstable or low
back chairs-You’ve sat on the chair with the shorter leg, or rickety back
cushion. Unstable furniture only increases fall risk as older adults have skewed
- Wet, waxed or irregular floors- For seniors, slippery floors and
hard surfaces in the bathroom and kitchen are especially hazardous. Non-skid
mats or mats with slip-resistant backing help combat slick or waxed
Alert1 Fall Prevention infographic provides simple
tips to avoid falls at home in
an easy-to-read format.
Alert1 Medical Alerts Provide Help to Arthritis Sufferers In Case of Emergency
Individuals who suffer from
arthritis and joint pain may also want to consider purchasing a medical alarm
system. This way, if they fall while no one is around and they cannot reach a
phone, they need only press a button on a wearable medical alarm necklace
to contact emergency services and get help.
emergency monitoring system for seniors not only helps older adults get
assistance in the event of an emergency, but can also offer peace of mind. More
seniors are choosing to continue living independently at home, and they and
their family caregivers can feel secure knowing that a medical alarm system provides access to help at any given
moment should a
senior with arthritis fall or otherwise injure themselves.