If your loved one is among the more than 24,000 older adults currently in a nursing home in Maryland, your expectation is that they will be well cared for during their stay. You probably helped make arrangements, chose the facility or talked to others who stayed there. If you get the alarming news that your loved one has fallen in a nursing home, the news can be tragic.
Startling statistics about nursing home falls
Though most people expect that a nursing home is one of the safest places for their older loved ones, living in one doesn’t mean that nothing bad will ever happen. Nursing home falls are extremely common. It is estimated that 50% of nursing home residents fall each year; these falls can cause devastating injuries such as broken hip, shoulder, rib or arm bones. Unfortunately, a broken bone in an older adult can be very severe and may require longer treatment or surgery.
Seniors in wheelchairs are especially at-risk
If your loved one is in a wheelchair, he or she is at an even greater risk of falling and becoming injured. Seniors in wheelchairs may have a balance problem, muscle weakness or a mental health disorder. If they aren’t continually monitored and checked to see if their conditions have worsened or if their wheelchair is still the correct fit for their needs, it can result in a devastating fall.
Getting help after your loved one falls
If your loved one has fallen from a wheelchair, it’s important to talk to an occupational and physical therapist. They can provide therapy to help prevent your loved one from falling in the future. You should also talk with the nursing home staff. Your loved one will need care as they recover from their injury and will need additional assistance in the future when getting in and out of their wheelchair.