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The Older They Are, The Harder They Fall

iStock/Thinkstock(ATLANTA) -- Getting old is hard, especially when you hit the ground hard.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that one in three people age 65 will fall down at least once during the year.

As the CDC's Dr. Judy Stevens explains, "Most falls don't cause injuries.  But one-of-five falls causes a serious injury like a head injury or a fracture.  And each year, there are about 260,000 hip fractures."

As a result of these mishaps, particularly in older adults, approximately 20,000 people age 65 and up died from their injuries in 2010.

The medical costs of treating falls in 2010, when adjusted for inflation, was $30 billion, according to government figures.

Meanwhile, there's another side-effect from falling -- one that's psychological.  Often older people who fall, even when they're not seriously hurt, will develop a phobia that curtails their physical activity.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio