How high is your risk of falling?

 

Are falls becoming an issue for you? You are not the only one. In developed countries, at least one out of every three people aged 65 and over fall every year. By the time people are aged in their eighties, around 40% to 50% of people fall at least once a year.  Falls can result in serious injury and hospitalisation. Apart from the high economic cost, a fall can reduce your independence and confidence for everyday activities.

Falls usually result from a combination of factors.  Certain risk factors have been identified as increasing the risk of falling. Take this quick quiz to find out more about your own falls risk:

  • Are you aged at least 65 (or 50 if you are Indigenous)? YES/NO
  • Do you live alone? YES/NO
  • Are you female? YES/NO
  • Have you fallen in the last 12 months? YES/NO
  • Do you take tablets to manage sleep, anxiety or depression? YES/NO
  • Do you take 4 or more different medications? YES/NO
  • Do you have a progressive neuromuscular condition? YES/NO
  • Do you have any visual impairment? YES/NO
  • Do you feel dizzy when you move from lying to sitting or standing? YES/NO
  • Do you forget to use your walking aid? YES/NO
  • Do you have any problems with your feet? YES/NO
  • Do you often need to rush to the toilet? YES/NO
  • Are there any situations in your home where you feel unsafe to move? YES/NO

Answering YES to any of the above questions means that you may be at increased risk of falling.

Health providers also have other ways to determine your risk of falling. The good news is that research shows that there are simple, effective ways to prevent most falls. The Stay Standing program is an 8 week program based on research and Australian best practice guidelines for falls risk reduction. The Stay Standing Program empowers you with strategies for independence in everyday life.