Slips and falls are a leading factor in preventable injuries and deaths. In Minnesota, the rate of deadly falls is rising faster than rates for the US as a whole and we are one of the top states for serious or fatal injury from falls. That is not a good statistic to be known for! While the highest rate of fall injuries is in the 65 and older age group, all age groups are at risk for concussion, neck/back injury, fractures and sprains from falling, and the very young have the highest rates of falls- anyone can fall and get hurt. The good part is that most slips, trips and falls can be prevented.
Common factors that can increase the risk of falls include vision problems, weak lower body muscles, impaired balance, inner ear disorders, dehydration, medication side effects like dizziness or lightheadedness, and using alcohol or other drugs.
Slip, trip and fall hazards include poor footwear, uneven or slippery walking/working surfaces, clutter, throw rugs, extension cords, or poor lighting. In your workplace you should alert your supervisor to hazards so that they can be fixed before someone is injured, and always report injuries. Falls with injuries to the head, back/neck or joints should receive appropriate first aid. Anyone who falls or is struck forcefully, hits their head, or falls from a distance greater than their standing height should contact a health care provider to be checked for a serious head injury.
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