The Most Common Injuries Elderly People Experience: A Useful Guide

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Are you trying to learn about the most common injuries that elderly individuals experience? If yes, you should check out our guide here.

Are you scared of getting old?

You’re not the only one. Indeed, it’s one of the most prevalent fears out there, with 87% of people feeling exactly the same way.

And you can understand why. Death looms ever larger and everything from your independence to cognitive functioning starts to suffer. It doesn’t exactly fill you with confidence.

However, it’s the physical side of the equation that can be the scariest prospect of aging. When your muscles start to weaken and mobility issues arise, falls and injuries become far more likely.

Are you wondering about the most common injuries that elderly people experience? Maybe there’s somebody you know who’ll benefit from the insight. After all, knowing the primary hazards is a crucial first step to avoiding them. 

Let us help! Keep reading to discover seven injuries that elderly people suffer most.

1. A Broken Hip

As we said in the intro, elderly people are far more susceptible to falls.

Everything about the aging process just makes them more likely. Muscles weaken, mobility declines, and flexibility dwindles. You become unsteady on your feet and, without assistance, can easily take a tumble.

Unfortunately, your bones become more brittle too. As you might imagine, brittle bones don’t mix well with the newfound propensity to fall over. All told, it’s a perfect storm for suffering broken bones.

It might come as no surprise, then, those fractured hips are some of the leading injuries suffered by seniors. Unfortunately, it’s also one of the most serious. Look into the best rehabilitation facilities possible if you’re unlucky enough to suffer in this way.

2. A Broken Wrist

Fractured wrists are another common outcome of falling in old age.

Whether you fall forward or backward, it’s natural to put your hands out in an attempt to soften the blow. Alas, the force that puts on your hands, wrists, and arms can be injurious.

What starts as a ‘protective measure’ backfires and ends up breaking your wrist(s).

The problem doesn’t stop there. Indeed, the location of the fracture makes even basic tasks a challenge to accomplish. Think about getting dressed, going to the bathroom, cooking, and eating. They all become difficult without external support.

That’s why the backlash of a broken wrist often causes older people to lose an element of independence.

3. Head Injuries

The human head is always vulnerable to injury at the hands of a fall.

However, that’s particularly true in old age when you lack the strength and reflexes to respond rapidly to the situation. You might be unable to lift your arms for protection or fail to extend your hands fast enough to cushion the blow.

In both cases, your head’s more likely to strike an object or the floor. It goes without saying how devastating the effects of such trauma can be.

4. Burns

Burns are another significant threat for older people, especially when they’re still living independently.

For example, someone with an ailing memory may forget that they left the stove on. Somebody with mobility problems might be less able to tackle a fire. And somebody with dwindling physical strength might drop a pot full of hot oil or water.

Whatever the scenario, the risk of suffering burns is more pronounced in old age.

Unfortunately, typical burn treatments don’t work as well either. Take active and age-appropriate steps to prevent the risk of fires breaking out in the first place.

5. Bedsores/Pressure Ulcers

Anybody who spends significant amounts of time in sedentary positions is at risk of bedsores.

Never heard of them?

They’re painful and debilitating ulcers that develop through constant pressure between a body part and a particular surface. Left untreated, they’ll fester and worsen to crippling levels.

That’s bad news for older people who struggle with their mobility levels. Indeed, many seniors (especially those with dementia or severe physical conditions) are confined to their bed or armchair. Their entire day can be spent in one position.

Bedsores can easily develop in the absence of movement and relief of the pressure on their skin.

6. Cuts/Lacerations

The skin on our body becomes thinner as we age.

Now, that isn’t a problem in its own right, but it does make us more vulnerable to suffering cuts and bruises. There’s less natural resistance to sharp objects, which makes lacerations more likely.

It’s another reason that the growing susceptibility to falls is so problematic. Anybody who falls over will collide with objects in their environment and, potentially, suffer nasty cuts in the process.

7. Infections

Young people heal with remarkable speed and efficiency.

It’s like a superpower, granted by virtue of a high-functioning immune system, lack of underlying health conditions, and general strength/suppleness.

Sadly, it doesn’t last forever. Older people take longer to heal from injuries and/or recover from sickness. Our immune systems ail in proportion to age; the older you get, the harder it is to get better. Needless to say, it causes problems across the board.

One example of the trouble it creates can be found in our previous point about lacerations. Basically, bad cuts can take a long time to heal. Even worse, they’re more likely to get infected in the process.

Make sure that any gash you suffer in old-age is kept clean and well-tended from the outset. It’s the only way to facilitate a speedy recovery.

Avoid the Most Common Injuries for Elderly People

Getting old isn’t all bad.

You become wiser, more content, and appreciative of the little things in life. You delight in your grandchildren, have more time to spend with family, and have no work stress to bother you anymore.

Let’s face it, it isn’t a bed of roses either! Old age presents you with physical, mental, and emotional challenges to overcome. Of them all, the injuries that many old people suffer can be particularly burdensome.

Hopefully, this post has highlighted the most common injuries to help you take steps to avoid them. Read more articles like this by searching ‘senior’ on the website now.

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