Older people with worsening vision face a greater risk of falls, fear of falls and reduced physical activity, a new study finds.
The researchers said their study suggested that taking steps to prevent falls for such older adults could limit the harmful consequences of falls for older adults. What’s more, helping older adults prevent falls also might slow declines in well-being, quality of life and independence associated with a fear of falling, they noted.
“We need more information about falls and the fear of falling in older adults with vision problems. This will help us design public health and clinical interventions to address some of the key consequences of vision loss for older adults,” said study co-author Joshua R. Ehrlich, M.D.
The research team examined information from the National Health and Aging Trends Study. Full findings appear in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.
Vision impairment and blindness affect one in 11 Americans age 65 and older. Senior living residents are particularly at risk.