What Are Common Illnesses for Seniors?

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Not every senior ends up with serious health issues, but general wear and tear, diminished immunity, and reduced physical strength can cause some illnesses to develop. Make sure to keep an eye out for these common types of senior health issues to help your senior loved one remain healthy.

Cardiovascular Disease

This leading cause of illness among seniors encompasses a variety of issues like heart failure or heart attacks. Cardiovascular disease causes serious health issues because it keeps the heart from being able to spread oxygen and nutrients throughout the body. Fortunately, many causes of cardiovascular disease are avoidable. Seniors who exercise regularly, follow a healthy diet, and keep their blood sugar and blood pressure low are less likely to develop cardiovascular disease. 

If your loved one needs help with exercise or maintaining a healthy diet, consider hiring a professional caregiver. In Mesa, senior home care agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Home Care Assistance, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. We offer a revolutionary program called the Balanced Care Method, which encourages seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy.

Cancer

Cancer may occur whenever a damaged cell mutates and grows out of control. It’s more common in seniors because aging cells are more likely to produce damaged copies. Things like eating antioxidant-rich foods can slightly lower the risk, but the most important thing with cancer is to catch it as early as possible. In general, any unexplained weight loss, fatigue, or pain is something your loved one should see a doctor about.

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)

Though this condition is most common among seniors who have smoked, it can occur in others just from years of exposure to pollutants or environmental irritants. COPD makes it difficult to get a deep breath or inhale enough oxygen, but symptoms are often subtle enough that seniors don’t realize they have it. Ask for a simple breathing spirometry test if you think your loved one may have COPD.

Brain Damage

There are a whole host of health issues—including strokes, Alzheimer’s disease, and vascular dementia—caused by damage to the brain. Living a generally healthy lifestyle, keeping blood pressure low, and avoiding situations that could result in a blow to the head can reduce the chances of developing these conditions, but brain damage isn’t always preventable. Being on the lookout for symptoms can help seniors get treatment as soon as possible.

Diabetes

Diabetes occurs when the body cannot properly regulate blood sugar, so it builds up in the bloodstream and damages cells throughout the body. Seniors can lower their risk of developing type 2 diabetes by maintaining a healthy weight, exercising, and not eating excessive sugar. Those who do get diabetes need to carefully follow their doctor’s instructions to prevent complications. 

Seniors with diabetes may find it difficult to prepare meals on their own and follow the correct diet. Living with a serious health condition can make it challenging for seniors to age in place. However, they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional live-in care. Mesa seniors can benefit from assistance with meal prep, bathing, transportation to the doctor’s office, medication reminders, and much more.

Respiratory Infections

Issues like pneumonia and the flu are common among seniors because the immune system cannot fight off infections. It can be difficult for seniors to recover from pneumonia or the flu, but these issues are often preventable. Seniors can get a vaccine to prevent pneumonia or influenza.

A variety of age-related health conditions can make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face can be easier to manage if their families opt for professional home care. Mesa families can rely on expertly trained caregivers to keep their loved ones safe and comfortable while aging in place. Home Care Assistance will work with you to customize a care plan that’s just right for your loved one’s needs. Reach out to us at Home Care Assistance if you need compassionate, professional care for your loved one. Call one of our dedicated Care Managers today at (480) 699-4899 to learn about the high quality of our in-home care services.