Falls Injuries and Anxiety among Community-Dwelling Older Adults in the Midst of COVID-19 Lockdown Restrictions: Are these Helpful or Harmful?

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Ray Marks

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Published: 10 May 2021 | Article Type :

Abstract

Falls among community dwelling older adults, which have been found to produce many adverse health outcomes have been studied for many years. Among the multiple potentially remediable falls risk factors identified in this body of literature is the presence of various anxiety states and symptoms. This review explores the possible link between excess anxiety and the risk for falling in the context of the home, during the prevailing coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns, in particular. Drawn largely from the English language peer reviewed works posted on PUBMED and SCIENCE DIRECT largely between January 1, 2015-April 30, 2021), articles that focused on the topic of anxiety among older adults in community settings at the time of the COVID-19 pandemic were sought and examined. Although very limited in quantity, these data show, a sizable proportion of older adults confined to their homes continue to incur injurious falls at substantive rates. Moreover, these data may be underestimates, because only injurious falls have been closely studied over this time period. Based on past research showing those experiencing any form of anxiety are likely to be at higher risk for falling once or multiple times than non-anxious older adults and the fact COVID-19 produces high anxiety responses, it is concluded that more attention to this correlate alongside efforts to prevent COVID-19 infections are strongly indicated. More focused efforts to avert falls in the home based on current pandemic findings are also essential to consider in any future public health advisory on limiting mobility and access to life affirming resources to save lives.

Keywords: Aging; Anxiety, Community, COVID-19, Falls, Home-Isolation, Injuries, Older Adults, Prevention.

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Ray Marks. (2021-05-10). "Falls Injuries and Anxiety among Community-Dwelling Older Adults in the Midst of COVID-19 Lockdown Restrictions: Are these Helpful or Harmful?." *Volume 4*, 1, 14-25