When the first grey hairs start settling into your roots, you can safely say that you’ve started to age. For some, this change can seem daunting. It can mean that your way of life will gradually see some pretty significant changes. However, aging is a natural process and one that has been made considerably smoother in light of recent medical and technological advancements. Nonetheless, there are still various issues we may face as we age.
Additionally, although an increased life expectancy means many people can live above the age of 80, it also means they’ll face some unique health issues. Managing these health issues, however, is entirely possible. With the proper care, senior citizens can lead a healthy, fulfilling life with their loved ones. Below, we’ll discuss some of the issues the elderly can face and how we can tackle them.
One of the most common issues senior citizens face is cognitive decline. Cognitive decline encompasses various factors, including our ability to think cohesively, learn, solve problems, and remember. People commonly know that as we age, our memory starts to weaken. However, various other areas are also gradually affected. Without intervention, these issues can escalate to dementia and other cognitive disorders.
Working with a trained family nurse practitioner is the only way to keep these issues in check. It allows you to ensure that your loved ones can maintain their life quality even with dementia, Alzheimer’s, or other cognitive problems. Fortunately, a trained family nurse with an MSN from a reputable institute can easily cater to senior citizens’ specific needs. That’s because the online msn fnp program prepares nurses to diagnose and treat cognitive disorders, alongside helping their clients maintain optimal quality of life. Online education is proving to be monumental in training and developing nurses today. A family nurse practitioner can simultaneously cater to their physical and emotional needs and help the elderly maintain as much autonomy as possible.
Declining oral health
After the cognitive decline, oral health issues are the most common problems people can face as they age. Oral health isn’t just important for aesthetic purposes, but it’s essential for overall wellbeing too. Furthermore, it is exceptionally critical to look after oral health as we age. Dental issues can lead to cardiovascular problems in some instances, especially if you have artificial valves.
As we age, our mouth starts getting drier. Furthermore, it’s much more common for teeth to wear away and chip off, leading to problems while eating. Cavities and tooth decay can be incredibly challenging to deal with, troubling daily life. So, to deal with dental issues, it’s essential to get regular checkups and professional cleanings done to keep any plaque buildup at bay. Furthermore, regular flossing and brushing can make a massive difference in helping maintain your teeth. All these steps can help you keep cavities, gum disease, and mouth cancer at bay.
Arthritis is yet another prevalent issue older people face. If it isn’t handled, it can cause moderate to severe impairment. Arthritis is a form of bone disease, and older people are more commonly affected by osteoarthritis. Almost every adult older than 80 has some form of osteoarthritis. This disease commonly affects the joints, such as the knees, fingers, hips, toes, and wrists.
As we age, we begin to wear down on our joints which can cause stiffness, restricted movement, and inflammation. Although there isn’t any treatment for arthritis, lifestyle changes can help you make the disease as manageable as possible. Painkillers and steroids can help you when the pain is too much to handle, and regular exercise can help strengthen your body and protect your joints and bones. Furthermore, hot and cold therapy can also help relieve the pain. Plus, maintaining a healthy weight can reduce pressure on your joints.
Suppose you haven’t been following a healthy lifestyle. In that case, plaque buildup in the arteries can lead to an increased risk of developing some form of cardiovascular disease. Furthermore, cardiovascular disease has a genetic link, and a doctor can analyze if you’re predisposed to it. As we age, our body goes through some significant changes, and it weakens, which can increase the risk of heart issues.
If you’re suffering from advanced heart disease, a doctor might recommend surgical procedures to open up the arteries. However, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, including a healthy diet and regular exercise, can work wonders to keep heart diseases from accelerating. Additionally, it might be a good idea to quit smoking. It can drastically increase your risk of a heart attack or a stroke. A
Older people are more susceptible to diabetes, as their bodies can gradually fail to regulate blood sugar levels. Your body might stop producing enough insulin, or it may grow resistant to the insulin in it. In either case, diabetes is a lifelong condition, and you need to make healthier lifestyle changes to cope with it. With diabetes, older people might be more susceptible to suffering from sores and infections, heart disease, vision issues, and problems with kidneys, to name a few.
However, it can be easy to manage diabetes if you focus on your diet. Staying away from sugary foods is a must, and you also need to keep away from too many carbs or processed foods. Such items are much more easily broken down into glucose and can cause severe issues. Diabetes can also cause foot-related problems, so it’s essential to scrutinize them. Any nicks and cuts can quickly escalate into infections, so it’s viable to keep your feet protected. Furthermore, frequent massages can keep blood flowing through your feet and prevent numbness.
Aging can seem like a daunting journey if you aren’t prepared to handle it. While there are many issues you might encounter, you can enjoy your twilight years immensely if you’re ready to manage them. By making some healthy changes to your lifestyle, you will witness significant improvements in your life quality. Exercising regularly, eating clean, and staying on top of your medical history can help you lead a fulfilling life regardless of age.