How Exercise in Elderly Individuals Decrease Their Risk for fall

HowExercise in Elderly Individuals Decrease Their Risk for fall

HowExercise in Elderly Individuals Decrease Their Risk for fall

Fallsare a common and sophisticated syndrome that causes mortality,morbidity, reduced functioning and premature admissions into nursinghomes. Falls can happen to anyone, but as one becomes older, the riskof fall increases. Falls have a range of precipitating causes andrisk factors that make the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention atough clinical encounter. A fall may be an indicator of the beginningof an acute medical condition, may come from a severe condition, ormay simply indicate the progression of normal age-related conditionssuch as poor vision.

Discussionof the purpose

Identificationof effective intervention measures to prevent falls and fall-inducedinjuries among older adults is a key area of research and policydevelopment in the field of geriatrics studies. The availablepublications for clinical guidelines review evidence relating tostrategies to prevent falls and offer recommendations for evaluationand intervention (Ambrose,Paul &amp Hausdorff, 2013).These clinical guidelines and the broad literature on fall preventionprovide insight into the area of clinical fall prevention. Therefore,this paper gives a brief overview of the epidemiology of falls as aproblem among elderly individuals and assesses the role of exercisein reducing the rate of falls.

Descriptionof the problem

Fallsare common occurrences among elderly individuals. It is estimatedthat over 10 percent of elderly adults over 65 years living in thecommunity fall annually (Karlssonet al., 2013).This rate continues to rise as their age increase, and it is worsefor those living in institutional settings. Falls are the underlyingcause of high rates of mortality and morbidity among the elderlyindividuals. Approximately 75 percent of deaths that occur in Americaamong the population aged 65, and above are caused by falls (Karlssonet al., 2013).Fall-induced deaths rise dramatically as the age of these individualsgoes beyond 70 years. It is also estimated that 1% of older adultswho sustain hip fractures upon a fall have a mortality rate ofbetween 20 – 30 percent within a year of the injury (Karlssonet al., 2013).

Theincreasing rate of falls among elderly individuals is attributable tothe high incidence of clinical disorders such as osteoporosis andphysiologic changes induced by age. Although most falls do notproduce serious injuries, it is estimated that between 5 – 10percent of older adults living in communities sustain a severe injury(Best-Martini&amp Jones-DiGenova, 2014).Fall-related injuries often induce long-term morbidity among theseindividuals. Therefore, clinical interventions and physiotherapeuticmediations such as exercise can play a critical role in reducing therisks of fall among this group. This discussion addresses thestudent-learning outcome by providing an in-depth analysis of thebenefits of exercise in reducing falls among the elderly. Thediscussion delves into the problem of falls among the elderly as ahealth issue in America. It proposes solutions to the problem byhighlighting the benefits of exercises.


Fallsaccount for a significant proportion of non-fatal injuries among theelderly in America. Falls threaten the independence and safety ofseniors and generate enormous personal and economic costs. However,falling can be avoided through practical adjustments in lifestyles.Research on evidence-based falls prevention shows that exercises canreduce the chances of falls by impressive margins. Data from theCenter for Disease Control indicates that 33% of Americans aged 65,and above fall each year. This is a very worrying statistic sincethere are high chances of fatal injuries. This is further complicatedby the fact that the healing process among the elderly is lengthy. Infact, in every 11 seconds, a senior citizen is treated in anemergency room for fall-related injuries. Worse of all, in every 19minutes, an old adult succumbs to fall-related injuries. Fallsaccount for about 50% of non-fatal trauma admission and 2.8 millioninjuries treated across the country annually. Falls cause 27,000deaths and close to 800,000 hospital admissions per annum.

Lowerbody weakness is a major cause of falls in older adults. Exercisescan help reduce the probability of falls by strengthening muscles andbones. Additionally, individuals with difficulties in walking andbalance have a higher chance of falling. Consistent exercises reducethe difficulties in waking and enhance body balance. Exercisesincrease muscle flexibility, which plays a major role in achievingbody balance. Moreover, exercises increase how long an elderly personcan be active, therefore, reducing the chances of fatigue-relatedfalls. Some of the recommended exercises include toe stand, balanceexercises, leg extensions, knee curls as well as stretching the backof their legs. Further research on this problem needs to address therecommended intensity and frequency of exercises to achieve optimumsafety for the elderly. Moreover, further research should investigatethe relationship between exercises in early life and the incidencesof fall among later in life. Finally, more research should evaluatethe differences in the extent of fall injuries among seniors thatexercise.


Ambrose,A. F., Paul, G., &amp Hausdorff, J. M. (2013). Risk factors forfalls among older adults: a review of theliterature.&nbspMaturitas,&nbsp75(1),51-61.

Best-Martini,E., &amp Jones-DiGenova, K. (2014).&nbspExercisefor Frail Elders.Human kinetics.

Karlsson,M. K., Vonschewelov, T., Karlsson, C., Cöster, M., &amp Rosengen,B. E. (2013). Prevention of falls in the elderly: areview.&nbspScandinavianjournal of public health,&nbsp41(5),442-454.