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Every year one in 3 people aged 65 and over in Derbyshire will have a trip or fall. This rises to one in 2 in people aged 80 and over.

Falls are a major cause of hospital admissions and can result in serious injuries such as hip fractures.

Falls, and the fear of falling, can also contribute to a loss of confidence and independence.

However falling over isn’t an inevitable part of the ageing process. Many falls are preventable and we want to help you stay on your feet, living the life you want to live.

Are you at risk of falling?

We are all at risk of having a fall but as we get older our risk increases due to a variety of reasons including:

  • balance - we rely on our balance to stay upright when we overreach or trip, however, as we age our balance reaction time gets slower
  • muscle strength - as we age we lose muscle strength and between the ages of 50 and 70 you will lose 30% of muscle strength
  • bones - bones become more brittle as we age, making them more likely to fracture if you fall. This is especially true for postmenopausal women

Falls campaign

We're launching a new falls prevention campaign with lots of help and advice around staying healthy, mobile and well for longer.

Find out more about the campaign, and find advice and resources.


There are some easy exercises you can do at home to help reduce your risk of falling and improve your strength and stability.

These videos include ones produced by Derbyshire staff about getting off the floor, home safety, footwear and wellbeing.

Amber Valley Rehabilitation Unit educational videos

The multi disciplinary team at the Rehabilitation Unit in Amber Valley have created a series of short educational videos for advice on how to reduce your risk of falls.

View the rehabilitation unit videos.

Helping older people stay active at home

The Chartered Society of Physiotherapists have created a simple set of exercises designed especially for older people to help everyone stay active at home.

View the Chartered Society of Physiotherapists stay active at home videos.

Keeping healthy and active as you age

Staying healthy and active is important at any age, and getting older shouldn't prevent this. Although you might feel your body slowing down slightly, there are plenty of things you can do to ensure that you keep fit and active.

View the Chartered Society of Physiotherapists healthy and active videos.

Falls checklist

The checklist below helps you to think about your risk of falling. Take a look and see how many apply to you.

  • Risk factor: I have fallen in the last year
  • Why it matters: People who have fallen are more likely to fall again
  • Risk factor: I need to push with my hands to stand up from a chair
  • Why it matters: This is a sign of weak leg muscle which can be a major reason for falling
  • Risk factor: I feel unsteady sometimes when walking and have to use a stick or furniture to help myself
  • Why it matters: Unsteadiness or needing support are signs that you may have poor balance
  • Risk factor: I sometimes have to rush to the toilet
  • Why it matters: Rushing to the bathroom, especially at night, increases your risk of falling
  • Risk factor: I am worried about falling
  • Why it matters: People who are worried about falling are more likely to fall
  • Risk factor: I take medicine that sometimes makes me feel sleepy, feel light-headed, dizzy or more drowsy than usual, for example sleeping pills, blood pressure pills
  • Why it matters: Side effects from medicines can sometimes increase your chance of falling
  • Risk factor: I take four or more medicines
  • Why it matters: Taking 4 or more medicines increases your risk of falling
  • Risk factor: It has been more than 2 years since I had my eyes checked
  • Why it matters: Your eyes can change as you age, your glasses may need to as well
  • Risk factor: I often feel sad or depressed
  • Why it matters: Symptoms of depression such as feeling sad or unmotivated, have been linked to an increased falls risk
  • Risk factor: My house is a bit cluttered, some of my light bulbs don’t work and I have to use the doorframe to steady myself getting in/out of the house
  • Why it matters: Clutter, poor lighting and absence of handrails can increase your risk of falling

If you have answered yes to one or more of the questions, you could be at risk of falling.

You might want to think about what steps you can take to reduce the risk of falling. Here are some ideas for reducing your risk.

Reduce the risk of falling

There are some simple things that you can do to reduce your risk of falling:

Join a falls prevention exercise class

Live Stronger for Longer is a falls prevention service for older people across Derbyshire.

As part of the service they offer Strong and Stready - a free 4 week programme of exercise classes to help improve your strength and balance, have fun and meet new friends.

To find out more, visit Live Stronger for Longer's website or tel: 01773 766922

Make your home safer

Remove any clutter that may cause you to trip, fix any missing or broken light bulbs and see if there is any specialist equipment that you might be entitled to such as grab rails.

The services below may be able to offer you help and practical support.

Derbyshire Falls Alert Service

If you do have a fall it’s important that you are able to alert someone so you can get help quickly. The Derbyshire Falls Alert Service lets older people get help at the push of a button using a falls alarm.

To get in touch visit the Derbyshire Falls Alert Service or tel: 01629 533190.

Speak to your GP about any worries about falling

They can arrange for your medicines to be reviewed, they can also check your balance if you feel unsteady and check if there are any underlying issues that might mean you need to rush to the toilet.

Visit an optician

Get your eyes checked at least once every year - it’s free if you are aged 60 or older.

Find out more about caring for your eyes as you get older at the NHS Live Well website.

Advice and support for professionals

If you are a professional, carer or volunteer who comes into regular contact with older people then you can find advice and help on how to prevent falls on Derbyshire County Council's website.