Embarrassment experienced by older adults in relation to accidental falls: A concept analysis

Hanne Dolan, Ruth Taylor-Piliae

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Embarrassment is commonly felt by older adults experiencing a fall, and embarrassment may cause older adults to adopt maladaptive behaviors by not implementing fall prevention strategies. Clarifying the concept of embarrassment for nursing and defining the concept as it relates to accidental falls and fall prevention among older adults was conducted using Walker and Avant's eight-step concept analysis process. The proposed definition of embarrassment experienced by older adults in relation to accidental falls is: The feeling of physical discomfort and exposure in a social situation due to the loss of control and self-esteem, as well as the inconsistency between one's personal identity as an independent and dignified person and the accidental fall or near fall behavior that threatens independence and dignity leading to emotional distress. Nurses recognizing older adults’ potential fall-related embarrassment may increase older adults’ adherence to fall prevention strategies and improve health outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)769-775
Number of pages7
JournalGeriatric Nursing
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2020


  • Accidental falls
  • Concept analysis
  • Embarrassment
  • Nursing
  • Older adults

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gerontology


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