Many older people fall because their bones are not as strong as they used to be. Osteoporosis is a medical condition in which bones are more porous and prone to fractures. Caused by hormonal changes, calcium and vitamin D deficiency, and a decrease in physical activity, osteoporosis is a chief cause of fractures in older adults, especially among women. What is debatable is whether brittle bones break after a fall, or break when stressed and in turn cause a fall. In either event, a decrease in bone density contributes to falls and resultant injuries.
Eat or drink sufficient calcium. Postmenopausal women need 1,500 mg of calcium daily. Calcium-rich foods include milk, yogurt, cheese, fish and shellfish, selected vegetables such as broccoli, soybeans, collards and turnip greens, tofu and almonds.
Get sufficient vitamin D in order to enhance the absorption of calcium into the bloodstream. Vitamin D is formed naturally in the body after exposure to sunlight, but some older adults may need a supplement.
Regularly do weight-bearing exercises.
Sources: Centers for Disease Control, Colorado State University Next in the series: impaired vision and falling. Why One Call Alert? This year 13.5 million people age 65 and older will fall. If you or a loved one experience a medical emergency, time is of the essence. That’s where One Call Alert can help, connecting you to the right help for the situation, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year at the push of a button. Whether you need emergency services or just the assistance of a family member or friend to help you get back on your feet, we can help.