While the elderly are an incredible contribution to society and should be respected for their wisdom, what challenges do they encounter? Unfortunately, getting older can seem daunting including greying hair, wrinkles, social stigma, and forgetting the basics of your life. The simplest tasks, that were once easy, are a challenge.
This is a growing problem today. The senior population accounts for over 12 percent of the world’s population. However, it is important to understand their challenges especially in the home health care industry.
Chronic Health Conditions
Chronic health conditions include heart disease, obesity, cancer, diabetes, stroke, and arthritis. According to the national council of aging, about 92 percent of seniors have at least one chronic disease. Despite being eating healthy and living an active lifestyle, time wears down the body. Additionally, doctors recommend seniors receiving an annual checkup.
As we age, our bones shrink and muscle loses strength plus flexibility. Seniors are more prone to losing balance or fracturing a bone. Have you ever heard of the expression “help, I have fallen, but I can’t get up?” A senior dies from falling every 29 minutes making it the leading cause of injury among the elderly.
Physicians recommend prevention through education, increased physical activity, and modifications to home that include home health aides who understand how seniors should be taken care of such as long-term care.
Mental and Cognitive Health
The most common mental health disorders among seniors include anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, and certain phobias. Mental disorders are often underdiagnosed and undertreated. According to the World Health Organization, over 15 percent of adults over the age of 60 suffer from a mental health disorder.
Cognitive health is focused on a person’s ability to think, learn, and remember. The most common include dementia and Alzheimers. Doctors recommend a healthy lifestyle such as living at home or social support from family, friends, or support groups to help treat certain disorders.