Friday, September 4, 2009

Health Issues for Seniors

1. Aging Changes Us Senior citizens face several known health challenges. Longevity exposes us to a variety of predictable illnesses identified through research. The biologic changes that occur with aging are unique to each of us, but special health concerns are indeed inevitable. 2. What to Expect with Aging Scientists aren't sure exactly what occurs that makes us more susceptible to cancer, as we age. but our risk does increase. One theory is that longevity simply prolongs our exposure to cancer causing substances. We can expect some loss of hearing and some loss of vision. Falling becomes more of a danger because of increased susceptibility to fractures. Senior women and men can both suffer from osteoporosis. Recent guidelines from the American College of Physicians suggest that bone density testing is not just for women. The risk of heart disease and vulnerability to infections increase.Constipation is common because digestive juices tend to be less plentiful. Movement in the intestines slows down, as intestinal surface area decreases. Women and men may experience poor bowel and bladder control.Brain activity declines because the number of impulses between brain cells decreases. Reflexes are slower and coordination can be an effort. Impotence and vaginal dryness, accompany changes in circulation and hormonal function. Increased fragility of skin and blood vessels make injuries more common. Weight loss becomes more difficult with changes in metabolism. 3. Combating Aging Everyone can find ways that can help with disease prevention. Studies show that it's never too late to adopt a healthier lifestyle. Stay active and involved with others. Our brain is capable of constant regeneration and should be stimulated. One study showed that male veterans who were able to increase their ability to exercise, experienced a 70% reduction in mortality from all causes. Other studies have shown that regular exercise improves brain function. Regular exercise helps with depression, pain control and contributes to weight management. Weight control is important to prevent high blood pressure and diabetes, as well as preventing and treating osteoporosis. It's not necessary to do anything strenuous. Even minor changes in your level of physical activity will have an positive impact on your health. 4. Six Rules to Live by Stop smoking. You will immediately decrease your risk of heart disease. Get out and walk daily, or find a form of exercise that suits your needs. Everyone can accomplish some form of daily activity. Strength training, stretching, chair exercise, and gardening are just a sampling of activities that can help ward off disease. Recent evidence shows that Vitamin D is can combat the risk of depression. Speak with your doctor before you take any supplements, but make sure you get your daily dose of Vitamin D from sunshine. Eat a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables throughout the day. Engage the help of others, and use assistive devices to manage difficult tasks and reduce your risk of falls and injuries that might lead to hospitalization.Learn something new every day. 5. Stay Involved with Your Health Care Maintain a regular schedule of immunization and health screening. Explore options for treatment of existing illness with your medical provider. Although there's no cure for getting older, it's more possible than ever before to "stay young" and prevent many of health issues faced by senior citizens. After all, "aging seems to be the only available way to live a long life." (Daniel Francois Esprit Auber). Source :

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