7 Common Geriatric Health Problems

As we age, our bodies change and become more susceptible to health problems. Here are seven of the most common senior health problems.

Older adults are among the highest-risk groups in the United States for health issues. Each year, approximately 19.6 million Americans aged 65 and older are treated in emergency departments for injuries, and more than 1.6 million are hospitalized. This is mainly because as we age, our bodies change and become more susceptible to health problems. Here are seven of the most common senior health problems:  

1. Arthritis

Arthritis is one of the most common issues affecting elderly patients. The CDC estimates that 49.6% of people 65 and older experience arthritis. The pain from arthritis often keeps individuals from staying active, making them susceptible to other illnesses and diseases. If you are experiencing arthritis, it’s essential to work with your senior doctor to develop an activity plan to help you stay healthy.  

2. Heart Disease

Heart disease continues to be the leading cause of death among individuals 65 and older. Unfortunately, many patients fail to realize they have heart disease without routine check-ups until it’s too late.  

While heart disease can be caused by risky behaviors, such as tobacco and alcohol abuse, it can also be caused by simple inactivity, obesity, or genetics. Due to the wide range of causes, it’s essential to keep yourself healthy and active and to regularly check with your doctor to see if you have any complications that need to be attended to.  

3. Cancer

While heart disease is the number one cause of death among elderly patients, cancer is second. Thankfully, many cancers can be caught early through routine mammograms, colonoscopies, and skin checks, significantly improving your quality of life and chance of recovery. 

4. Alzheimer’s Disease

Just as physical activity is essential for overall health, so is mental exercise. Cognitive health typically gets worse with limited movement or interaction with others. That’s why it’s necessary to maintain some form of community.  Speak with your doctor if you have any concerns about your cognitive health.   

5. Diabetes

Diabetes can be quickly and easily identified through blood tests, yet many seniors never realize they are at risk. However, the sooner you identify the issue, the easier it is to manage. If it’s left unmanaged, diabetes can be very harmful to health.  Consider reaching out to your physician about whether or not you’re at risk for developing diabetes.  

6. Influenza

While the flu isn’t a chronic disease, those 65 and older are at greater risk and have more difficulty fighting off respiratory illnesses. While staying physically active through walking or swimming can help strengthen your lungs and immune system, speaking with your doctor about your risk and what steps you can take to proactively protect yourself from the flu and other respiratory illnesses is essential. 

7. Depression

Often overlooked among senior patients, depression is common among the elderly. Over 7 million individuals over 65 currently have depression. Other ailments on this list often cause this. 

For example, those who aren’t active due to arthritis, or can’t go out during flu season due to high risk, often experience depression due to their limited interaction with others. That’s why we at Greenbrook Medical strive to interact with our patients by not just giving them treatment but a community to which they can belong.  

Our geriatric doctors go the extra mile to help our patients feel like they belong and are part of a community. If you or someone you know needs care from a geriatric doctor, please reach out to find out how Greenbrook Medical can provide the care you need at the quality you deserve! 

We Want to Help You!

At Greenbrook Medical, we believe that every senior citizen should be cared for and treated with respect. That’s why we have made it our mission to provide the best possible care for our patients. Contact us today for a consultation or to request an appointment with one of our geriatric doctors!

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