Do Hip Protectors work?
Updated: Mar 12
What place do hip protectors have in the prevention of fall injuries in older people at risk of hip fracture? We take a look at the types of hip protectors, effectiveness, and tips for increasing compliance.
What are hip protectors?
Hip protectors are undergarments designed to protect the wearer's hips from risk of fractures - sometimes referred to as hip pads or hip protector pads.
These undergarments help those who are at risk of falling avoid hip fractures. Hip fracture injuries have become a major cause of long-term care admission and death among the elderly.
How do hip protectors work?
Hip protectors can be designed with either a hard shield (shell) around the hip area or soft padding.
Hard shield: in the case of a fall, the shield diverts energy away from the hips
Soft padding: Protects the hip by absorbing the energy of the impact
Do hip protectors prevent hip fractures?
Using a hip pad can reduce the chance of sustaining a hip fracture as the result of a fall.
The 2022 study The Influence of Fall Direction and Hip Protector on Fracture Risk investigated both the influence of impact direction on hip fracture risk and hip protector efficacy.
The study provided evidence that supported the success of soft-shell hip protectors guarding against anterior and posterior-lateral impacts.
Is a hard shield or soft padding the best option?
A frequent problem with hip protectors is compliance. Not all elderly individuals are interested in using hip protectors because they find them uncomfortable, a poor fit, too tight or difficult to sleep in at night.
Soft padded hip protectors are more comfortable than the hard shield option and research shows that compliance may increase with the soft-energy shunting / absorbing padding.
The bottom line is, compliance is key to getting the best result from the hip protector and Caregiver motivation and involvement are crucial.
Introducing HipSaver with HipSaver AirPad™
We recommend trying a HipSaver soft-padded hip protector. Designed with the user in mind HipSaver products are incredibly soft and comfortable to wear. The variety of designs will suit all types of wearers needs, ranging from the elderly in nursing home settings to those for very active seniors.
Which HipSaver is right?
Use the handy chart below to determine which HipSaver is the right choice depending on the wearer's particulars. (Chart provided by HealthSaver)
If you have any questions at all about the HipSaver range, please contact our friendly team on firstname.lastname@example.org, 0447 733 321 or 07 3410 8788. We're here to help!