A fall can be a minor mishap or a serious event. Understanding the difference is important so that you can get the care you need, when you need it. No one wants to overreact and end up in the hospital for something that could have been easily treated at home. Likewise, no one wants to downplay a fall and wind up with a major injury because they didn’t seek help soon enough. Let’s review how to tell if you need medical attention after a fall and what you should do next.
What are the risks associated with falls?
Falls are the leading cause of nonfatal injuries in the U.S., according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). More than 8 million visits to the emergency room happen each year because of falls, and about 800,000 people are hospitalized because of injuries related to falls. Falls can cause concussions, broken bones, hip fractures, and head injuries—some of which can be life-threatening.
Who is most at risk for falls?
Anyone can suffer a fall, but some groups are more likely than others. The elderly are particularly vulnerable to falls, as are young children. People with chronic medical conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, heart conditions, or stroke are also at increased risk for falls, as are people who take certain medications such as sedatives or antidepressants. And finally, anyone who has trouble walking or balancing is also at greater risk of falling.
What should I do if I fall?
If you suffer a fall, it’s important to stay calm and assess your injuries. If you can stand up and walk without pain, it’s likely that your injuries are minor. However, if you’re experiencing any pain, numbness, tingling or swelling, it’s important to seek medical attention right away. In some cases, a fall may not cause any pain at all but may still result in serious injury—so it’s always best to err on the side of caution and be seen by a doctor.
At Associated Orthopedics of Detroit, we specialize in treating patients who have suffered orthopedic injuries—including those caused by falls. If you’ve recently fallen and are experiencing any pain or discomfort, we encourage you to come see us so that we can properly assess your injuries and provide you with the treatment you need. Contact us today to schedule an appointment. We look forward to seeing you soon. The Associated Orthopedists of Detroit PC in St. Clair Shores and Shelby Township, MI is committed to providing the best care possible for our patients following a car accident. Our team provides immediate and expert treatment to trauma patients. If you've suffered a serious injury and need medical attention, call the office or use the online scheduling tool to make your appointment.