Health & Fitness

What Health Problems do the Elderly Face?

It is a fact that as people grow older their health needs change. In the early stages of life most people do not have significant health needs unless they are unfortunate enough to be born with congenital diseases or conditions that developed from early on in life. The early adult years tend to be a time when personal fitness is at a peak. During these years, many people enjoy regular high intensity exercise such as team games like football. Taking part in sports and exercise can be an excellent way of promoting lifelong fitness and improved life expectancies, especially when it is combined with a healthy and balanced diet. Sadly, as people enter the final stages of life and become elderly citizens, they may suffer from an increasing number of health problems. Whilst regular exercise can help to reduce this likelihood, for some people it is inevitable. This article explores three key health problems that the elderly may experience. 

Declining Mobility

In early adulthood mobility may be at its peak as it can be linked to athletic ability and regular exercise. However, in later life it is likely that most senior citizens may not exercise to the same level. As a result, this can have the effect of contributing to declining levels of mobility. Mobility levels can decline due to loss of muscle tone and reduced fitness levels. Muscle loss is known as sarcopenia and is a common condition in the elderly who have mobility problems. The effects of declining mobility can lead to an increasing risk of injury due to slips, trips and falls. When this risk is severe it is often best practice for the elderly person to have access to a range of mobility aids such as Zimmer frames along with the fitting of safety rails in baths, toilets and beds to minimize the risk of accidents. 

Problems with memory

Many people experience a reduction in their ability to remember as they grow older. This can be as simple as struggling to remember facts from the past with clarity or needing to think for longer to remember family birthdays and the ages of their grandchildren. Mild memory loss is common in the elderly but when it impacts on day to day living it can have result in safety concerns. For example, if an elderly person forgets to turn the cooker off after preparing a meal it can lead to the risk of house fires. When memory issues have a direct impact on the safety and wellbeing of an elderly person it can be wise to explore the option of moving to an assisted living facility. By searching for assisted living with memory care near me in online searches, you will be able to locate facilities that offer comfortable independent living for the elderly along with specialist healthcare professionals who can help their residents manage their memory issues. 

Increased risk of stroke

A stroke is a medical emergency which requires immediate medical assistance. Strokes can occur because of a bleed on the brain or when a blood vessel to the brain becomes blocked, often due to the buildup of fatty deposits. Whilst strokes can happen to anyone, regardless of their age, they are more common as people grow older. It is recognized that having high blood pressure over prolonged periods of time can be a key risk factor for stroke. Having a healthy diet along with regular gentle exercise can help to mitigate the risks of stroke. Another prime risk factor is smoking, and smokers of all ages should be encouraged to quit tobacco products to reduce their risks of having a stroke. 

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