Falls injury prevention

In the Northern Territory (NT), falls are the most common cause of injuries that need hospitalisation. 

The NT has the highest rate of falls hospitalisation in Australia. 

Each year 30% of Australians over the age of 65 and 50% of people over the age of 80 will suffer a fall. 

If you have fallen more than once in the past six months, you are more likely to fall again. 

Preventing falls in older people

Falls are the most common cause of serious injury in older people. Most falls are preventable.

You should do all of the following:

  • clear away clutter from your home and garden
  • wear safe shoes
  • get your eyesight checked and wear glasses if you need them
  • monitor your alcohol intake
  • keep yourself mobile through exercise.

Taking more than four different types of medication can put you at risk of falling. 

Health problems and falling

There are certain health conditions that make falling more likely.

These include the following:

  • stroke
  • Parkinson's disease
  • arthritis
  • low blood pressure
  • dizziness
  • diabetes
  • depression
  • dementia and Alzheimer's
  • incontinence
  • flu
  • not eating or drinking enough water.

Talking to your doctor

People often dismiss falls as ‘part of getting older’ or ‘just not concentrating’ but they are often a warning sign that something is not right.

It is important to talk to your doctor if you have a fall. 

Falling can be a sign of any of the following:

  • a new medical problem
  • balance problems
  • side effects of medication.

More information about falls

For more information read the booklet Don’t Fall For It on the Australian Government Department of Health website.

Healthy Active Ageing Directories have information about exercising in the community:

For useful contact information and for a falls checklist refer to the stay on your feet brochure.

Last updated: 28 November 2017