Getting old seem daunting. Wrinkles, grey hair, forgetfulness, and so on. Then there is an array of unique health conditions that one has to live within the old age. It is a pretty familiar scenario especially in families with old grandparents living with them. There is almost always an ailing senior member in a family. And the number is on the rise! It is estimated that by 2050, it is going to increase to above 22 percent of the total population of the world. Therefore, it is important to know the challenges that aged people face. We should also enlighten ourselves with preventive measures, which can help people to age healthily. Since I have grandparents at home, I have been conducting extensive research on the common issues affecting seniors. Thanks to my subscription to one of the Frontier bundles for allowing me to get some valuable information.
In this blog post, I’m going to share all this useful information with you.
According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), the average age has increased in Americans. Even if you are 65, you can expect to live another 19.3 years. However, careful management of chronic medical conditions is important to live healthily. Quitting unhealthy habits is the first step. Some instances are quitting smoking, alcohol, too much dieting, and so on. Being physically active and choosing a healthy diet can help you live healthily. Read on to know better about some of the common health concerns in seniors.
8 Prevalent Medical Conditions in Seniors
- Heart Disease
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Respiratory Diseases
- Pneumonia and Influenza
Read on to know more about them.
It is perhaps the most common medical condition that people who are 65 or above suffer from. Geriatricians have witnessed that. According to an estimate, about 49.7 percent of the adults over the age of 65 are affected by it. Arthritis can affect the quality of life for seniors. It can discourage them from being actively moving about. It’s is important to work with a doctor to avoid pain and have a personalized activity routine. Discuss the treatments too.
Currently, cancer has become the second top cause of death, especially in people above the age of 65. In 2014, the CDC recorded 413,885 deaths in seniors due to the said disease. According to that record, the percentage of men was 28 and that of women was 21 who are living with this chronic disease. The good news is that if diagnosed early through various screenings, it is treatable. Some popular screening tests are skin checks, mammograms, and colonoscopies. Even if it’s not completely treated, you can always improve the quality of life for the senior who is suffering from it.
The leading killer of seniors! Heart disease remains to be the cause of most deaths in people above the age of 65. According to a report, this critical condition affects around 26% of women, 37% of men above the age of 65. When people age, the risks to conditions like high cholesterol and high blood pressure increase. Which in turn increase the chances of heart disease. The sad part is that the risk of heart disease is increasing in all age groups. Eating well, exercise, and getting a good night’s sleep are essential to a healthy lifestyle. Make an effort to have a well-balanced diet and cut down on processed food.
It is also a major cause of deaths in people above 65. The Alzheimer’s Association has reported that one of nine people aged 65 or above is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. That makes it about 11 percent of all the people from this age group. The diagnosis is challenging, which is why the exact number of people suffering from this disease is unknown. Experts have acknowledged that this cognitive impairment has a clear impact on the health of the seniors across the spectrum. The problems related to self-care and safety are significant in this condition.
Respiratory diseases are pretty common in old age. Many people aged 65 and above are affected by COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) to an extent that it caused their death. The percentage of men suffering from various respiratory diseases at 65 or above is 10% and that of women is 11%. Emphysema or chronic bronchitis is very common. These conditions can make older people more vulnerable to infections and pneumonia. Ensure getting correct medication and run lung function tests more often.
Diabetes is a very common condition across the globe. Around 25% of the people aged 65 and above are suffering from diabetes. It is a serious health risk for seniors. People from all age groups should run blood tests to figure out if they are suffering from the said condition. But people who are 65 or above, they should be more conscious. You will have to make lifestyle changes for people who suffer from diabetes in old age. This involves daily physical activity and diet.
Osteoporosis is common in elderly people too. It can make aged people less mobile and eventually disabled. People become more vulnerable to fractures too. According to a report, around 54 million American residents over the age of 50 are suffering from osteoporosis or low bone mass. This can lead to the possibilities of fractures. And of course, low quality of life. According to an estimate, the number will increase up to 64.4 million by the year 2020.
Pneumonia and Influenza
You must be thinking that the aforementioned diseases are not chronic. Yes, they are not. But did you know that these infections are included in the top causes of death for people aged 65 and above? And that’s why senior healthcare includes annual flu shots and pneumonia vaccines. I was watching the flu ads with one of my Frontier TV packages and they were spreading awareness about how flu can really aggravate in old age.