Why fractures are so problematic for older people


In one study published this year, researchers found that frail older women who broke hips were unlikely to fully recover their pre-fracture quality of life, even after as many as 10 years.

Another study, published in 2016 in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, followed 733 adults with an average age of 84 for 2½ years after a hip fracture.


Plus, older adults simply don’t heal as fast as younger people do in general,


Guarding against fractures

It’s best to start improving your strength and balance long before you take a fall


. “It’s like putting money in your bank.”


Exercise.


Research shows that getting a variety of types of exercise can help reduce the risk of falls.

include s mixture of techniques, such as strength training, walking, balance and flexibility exercises, and tai chi.


Stay ahead of osteoporosis.


Bones lose density and strength as they age, which leads to a greater risk of fractures — and that’s especially true for women after menopause. That’s why the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends that all women 65 and older (and younger women at risk for osteoporosis because of a history of hip fracture, smoking, heavy alcohol consumption or low body weight) receive a bone density screening. (Men should ask their doctors whether they’re candidates for screening.)


Take fall prevention measures.


Simple steps such as removing trip hazards throughout your living space can make your home a safer place. These can include getting rid of area rugs and keeping your floor tidy and free of shoes, clothes, books, electrical cords, and other items. Getting your vision checked regularly can help, too.