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Aging Baby Boomer Falls Are A Severe Problem

Question: I live in an adult retirement community and it seems that someone falls and gets hurt almost every day. Why do seniors fall so much and is there anything to prevent this?

Answer: Baby boomers are about to populate the senior health-care system and the numbers will double between now and 2050 totaling around 80 million. Currently more than 2 million people fall and sustain serious injury annually, and they are falling at an increasing rate.

Many seniors are taking three or more medications per day and these medications actually cause dizziness and light-headed feelings, leading to stumbling, hesitation, slipping, falling, and the fear of falling.

Dizziness and disequilibrium (balance disorders) are second most common complaint to physicians; made by 40-percent of the adult population and accounting for approximately 290 million visits per year. This seemingly innocuous problem of vertigo and dizziness is actually the main cause of death among seniors.

Anyone that has dealt with the elderly knows that falling over the age of 65 can lead to hip fractures which require replacement, which in turn leads for between 25- to 50-percent of the recipients. The United States spends $20.2 billion annually for the treatment of injuries to the elderly after falls. According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, the majority of money spent on medical attention after a fall is for hip fracture care, which averages $35,000 to $45,000 per patient. Medicare and Medicaid are expected to spend more than $32 billion a year for fall related injuries by 2020.

Chiropractors correct vertebral subluxations, (misalignments of the spinal vertebra causing neurological interference) which can influence the body’s balance and effect dizziness. Many aging baby boomers respond well to gentle chiropractic adjustments, which may minimize or correct this common problem.

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