Many adults over the age of 65 years old are likely to experience falls. The injuries from a fall can range from mild up to fractured bones. A hip fracture from a fall is considered as a medical emergency. Luckily, not all falls are harsh enough to injure the hip bone. These cases of falls only lead to bruising and swelling of the hip along with hip pain and stiffness. The injuries on the tendons and muscles can also cause a certain degree of discomfort. Take note that these symptoms can be managed at home. If you want to be prepared, you can register for first aid training today.
The individual should get enough rest as much as possible so that the body is given enough time to heal. Bearing weight must be avoided on the wounded hip. A walker, cane or crutches must be used by the individual when walking.
Application of ice
The application of ice can help minimize the swelling and pain after a fall. All you have to do is to apply an ice pack or cool washcloth on the affected site. The ice pack must not be applied directly on the skin. You have to place a cloth or towel to protect the skin.
The individual experiencing hip pain can be managed by applying pressure to reduce the swelling and pain. You can provide the individual with a small pillow that he/she can hold tightly against the affected area. Generally, a tight bandage is applied since the compression can reduce the inflammation but applying a compression dressing to the hip is difficult.
The individual who experienced a fall must rest on the unaffected hip to keep the sore hip elevated. This will reduce the discomfort and swelling by minimizing the burden on the injury as well as allowing the extra fluids to drain away.
Always place a cushion or pillow in between the legs to align the leg properly which minimizes stress on the hip joint. If it is difficult for the individual to rest on his/her side, you can prop a cushion or pillow on his/her back.
You can provide the individual with pain medications to reduce the hip pain and discomfort. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen can reduce the level of pain as well as minimize the swelling. In some cases, the doctor can prescribe stronger pain medications.
Increasing the level of activity
The individual should steadily increase the level of activity as tolerated. A physical therapist can guide the individual with exercises to help strengthen the hip muscles as well as advice on the right pace in increasing the activity level. In most cases, swimming is recommended since it allows stretching and strengthening of the involved muscles without spraining the hip.
Medical treatment for hip pain
In case there is evident physical distortion of the hip or the individual could not bear load on his/her leg, it is vital to seek medical care right away. In case the pain is not resolved in 7-10 days, it is best to schedule an appointment with a doctor. A X-ray of the hip will be taken and surgery might be performed in severe cases.