The Most Common Slip and Fall Injuries:
This is What to Know
What awful memory do Michelle Obama and Stevie Wonder share?
Falling in front of everyone.
During a rally for Barrack Obama, Michelle and Stevie were climbing up the stairs together to reach the stage. However, instead of making it to the top, the last stair caught Stevie by surprise and sent him tumbling down.
Michelle was barely able to catch herself, and poor Stevie’s bodyguard cushioned the brunt of his fall. It just goes to show that slip and fall injuries can happen at any time and to anyone.
Thankfully, by learning the different types of injuries, and their common causes, you can take steps to protect yourself. Read on to learn everything you need to know to keep yourself safe.
Slip and Fall Injuries
While some slip and fall accidents may only result in minor injuries, others can cause life long, and often debilitating, problems.
Here are some of the most common types of slip or fall injuries:
- Soft tissue injury
- Head injury
- Abrasions or cuts
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken bones
Even if your fall was minor, you still could be hurt and not know it. That's why you should always seek immediate medical treatment after a slip and fall.
Soft Tissue Injury
The difficulty with soft tissue injuries is that you cannot see them with the naked eye. Since they aren't visible on the outside, you might not even know you're hurt until weeks after your fall.
A few examples of soft tissue injuries would be ankle sprains, wrist sprains, or tears in your ligaments and tendons. If you don't treat them, a soft tissue injury can become the source of chronic pain.
Even the smallest head injury, can become a medical emergency. When somebody falls and hits their head, it can cause swelling, and bleeding. In some cases, a head injury will be so severe that it will cause the individual to lose consciousness.
As a result, the person who fell could get a minor concussion, or experience traumatic brain injuries. It's tricky to diagnose head injuries because they don't always produce symptoms. Someone can fall and hit their head very hard and appear to be just fine, even though they're not.
Abrasions or Cuts
Another common slip-and-fall injury is cuts and abrasions. It's common for cuts and abrasions to look more severe than they are.
In reality, the injuries are usually easily treatable, with just a few stitches. However, if somebody has a very hard fall, the cuts and abrasions could just be the tip of the iceberg. The doctors will likely order x-rays to make sure that there aren't any more serious injuries hiding underneath, such as broken bones.
Arguably one of the scariest injuries is breaking a bone. Even if you only have a minor fracture, it can be a terrifying experience to not be able to move a part of your body.
Severe breaks can result in multiple surgeries and possibly lifelong problems. One of the biggest problems with broken bones is that the tissue surrounding the bones can also sustain damage.
It can take years of physical therapy to prevent chronic pain, as you wait for the damaged tissues to heal. Finally, broken bones can cause you to bleed extensively.
Immediately after falling, swelling will start to occur, making it more difficult for doctors to properly treat the break. Seeking immediate medical attention is the best way to make sure your body will be able to fully heal.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Anytime that you compress or pull your spinal cord, it can cause life-threatening injuries. In the worst-case scenario, a spinal cord injury on your upper back can cause complete paralysis. If the injury takes place in the lower part of your spine, it can cause partial paralysis.
Another problem with spinal cord injuries is that they can easily result in chronic pain. Even after the initial injury heals, the nervous system can still experience damage. Pinched nerves, or inflammation, can cause some of the highest levels of pain.
Causes of Slip and Falls
Slip and fall injuries are preventable, but you have to know what to look out for. Sometimes, something as simple as changing the shoes you’re using can help keep you safe.
Here are some of the most common injury causes:
- Uneven or wet surfaces
- Weather conditions
- Lack of training
- Improper footwear
- Large potholes
The footwear you use needs to be appropriate for whatever job or tasks you’re performing. Shoes that don’t’ secure to your feet, like flip flops, can be a major hazard when you’re working on slippery surfaces. Flip flops are also infamous for getting caught on rugs or carpets, which can lead to major falls.
Improper Training Causes Falls
Improper training can lead to falls for a variety of reasons. For instance, if a worker doesn’t know how to properly stock the shelves at a store, they may overreach and wind up falling off their ladder. Employers can prevent falls by providing thorough training. Employers should also consistently implement and monitor safety standards in the workplace.
When you're walking, you should pay special attention to any hazards on the floor. Loose floorboards, uneven sidewalks, and even tears in the carpet could all cause you to trip and fall.
To stay safe it's best to keep the floor free of all clutter at home and the workplace. You'll also want to make sure that you have a way to warn people if the floors are wet if they were recently mopped or waxed them. Finally, whenever you're walking to your car in a parking lot, keep your eyes open for any large potholes that could cause you to fall.
Stand Tall and Don’t Fall
Now you know about some of the most common slip and fall injuries. You also know what to look out for, to help keep you from becoming a fall victim. We hope that our article was able to help teach you at least 1 new thing, to keep you safe.
Are you ready to learn more ways to protect yourself in the world? Go ahead and read another one of our articles today!