Among older adults (those age 65 and older), falls are the leading cause of both fatal and nonfatal injuries. Roughly 20-30% of falls result in moderate to severe injuries (e.g., hip fractures, broken bones, head injuries) that reduce mobility, independence, and increase the risk of premature death. Most fractures among older adults are caused by falls, including over 95% of hip fractures.
Even falls without a major injury can cause an older adult to become fearful or depressed, making it difficult for them to stay active.
In assisted living, falls are not always a reflection of an isolated event or lack of supervision, but often times a sign of other health problems. Generally, assisted living residents are older, have more complex, chronic conditions, and have more difficulty walking than older adults living in their own home. They also tend to have mental health or memory problems, have difficulty with activities of daily living, and need help getting around or taking care of themselves. These health issues increase their risk for falls.
Ultimately, each resident in an assisted living community is unique with their own set of characteristics and conditions. If risk signs are noted in an assisted living resident, an evaluation may need to be conducted.