Even the most experienced caregiver can panic when a senior falls in their presence, so it is important to know what to do in the event that you are witness to a fall. Certain actions should always be taken after a senior falls, as we will list below. A proactive approach to a possible problem will help both seniors and caregivers in the event that it occurs.
When to Call 911 Immediately
If the senior is unconscious or unresponsive, call 911 immediately. Stay calm and take stock of the situation. As you wait for assistance, check their vital signs such as their pulse, respiration, and skin coloring. Look for broken bones or bleeding. Keep them warm and stay with them until help gets there.
Helping Them Up
Your senior may be bruised or shaken but ready to get up. If so, you are there to assist them as needed not to bear all of their weight. If they cannot get up with minimal assistance, you will need to call for emergency help.
First, place a sturdy chair in front of them. Help them roll from their back or side onto their stomach, if that is how they landed. From there, they will need to pull themselves up slowly onto their hands and knees. From this position, you can guide them into the chair in front of them. Help them slowly turn until they are seated comfortably.
You may also place a second chair behind them before they get up. They can use the first chair as leverage as they pick themselves up and then lower themselves backwards into the second chair. As always, guide them as they go. Make sure the chair does not slide as they sit on it.
Be sure that your loved one is feeling okay before they get up again. You should always get in touch with their family doctor after a fall, even when they feel fine, to let them know what happened.