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5 Common Health Concerns for Seniors

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Senior health concerns

Last Updated on October 6, 2021 by ashley.davis

Introduction

As we get age, we are more likely to develop certain health problems. While it does not mean all health conditions are inevitable, you may be at higher risk in your 60s and beyond. Thus, we need to look at 5 Common Health Concerns for Seniors.

The good news is, your lifestyle and the steps you take can decrease your chances of many health conditions associated with aging. 

Continue reading to learn what you can do to lower your risk of 5 Common Health Concerns for Seniors. 

1. Heart disease

A study by the American College of Cardiology shows that cardiovascular disease causes the highest number of adult deaths in the United States. People that are over age 65 have an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, and heart attack. 

Elders are more likely to have risk factors for heart disease than younger people, including high blood pressure, obesity, and high cholesterol. 

Heart disease is preventable in many cases. One must start including heart-healthy habits as a part of their lifestyle; it is never too early, and never too late! 

Consider the following suggestions: 

  • At least 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise regularly
  • Limit trans fats
  • Don’t smoke
  • Treat high blood pressure
  • Maintain a healthy weight 

2. Dementia 

Senior with dementia unable to remember what he was thinking of

Dementia is a progressive condition that affects a person’s cognitive ability as well as memory. There are different forms of dementia, with Alzheimer’s Disease being the most well-known. 

Everyone occasionally forgets things. But dementia is different. Symptoms progress and eventually interfere with a person’s level of functioning. 

Symptoms of dementia include: 

  • Confusion 
  • Memory loss
  • Personality changes
  • Trouble with decision making 

Steps to lower the risk of dementia include: 

  • Get regular exercise
  • Learn something new to stimulate your mind
  • Don’t smoke 
  • Limit alcohol 

3. Falls

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention informs us that every year, millions of adults over age 65 sustain a fall. Falling once doubles an older adult’s chances of having subsequent falls. 

Falls can lead to many broken bones, head injuries, and even death. In some cases, a fall leads to limited movement, which can cause other health consequences. 

In older adults, falls may occur for a variety of reasons, such as poor balance, medication side effects, tripping hazards, weak lower body muscles, and poor vision.

Decrease your risk of a fall by doing the following:  

  • Do balance and lower body exercises to strengthen your legs 
  • Install handrails on stairs
  • Make sure your home is well lit
  • Remove tripping hazards, such as throw rugs
  • Place a grab bar inside the shower 

4. Depression 

Senior suffering from depression

Depression involves sustained feelings of sadness and loss of interest in activities. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, out of about 35 million people in the United States that have depression, 6.5 million of them are over the age of 65. 

Older adults may experience depression for several reasons, such as:  

  • Death of a loved one
  • Children moving away
  • Social isolation 
  • Loss of purpose
  • Medical conditions

Depression is treated with therapy, medication, and lifestyle changes, such as exercise. If you are showing symptoms of depression, help is available. 

Symptoms of depression in older adults include: 

  • Sad mood
  • Irritability 
  • Trouble sleeping 
  • Fatigue
  • Confusion 

5. Poor Oral Health 

Poor oral health can have serious consequences. It can lead to tooth loss, nutritional problems, and decreased quality of life. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 68 percent of adults over age 65 have gum disease. About 20 percent of people over 65 have lost all their teeth. 

Protect your dental health by doing the following:

  • See your dentist regularly
  • Brush and floss daily 
  • Limit sugar
  • Treat dental problems, such as cavities, as soon as possible

Conclusion

By taking the steps above, you can lower your risk of 5 Common Health Concerns for Seniors. Please check out BoomersHub’s Blog’s Senior Living category for more tips on living well as you age.

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