Even healthy seniors will experience changes as they age, many of which are completely normal. Your loved one may develop unusual habits or ailments, and you should be able to tell the difference between everyday annoyances and serious health complications that must be addressed immediately.
If your loved one has been diagnosed with a serious medical condition, you may want to consider hiring a professional caregiver. Ft. Lauderdale in-home care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.
Here are 5 of the most common age-related changes that seniors experience and what caregivers can do to manage them.
1. Aching Joints
Joints take an incredible amount of wear and tear over the years, and the soft tissue that cushions the bones eventually becomes damaged. Arthritis is extremely common among the elderly, and most seniors can manage their discomfort with over-the-counter painkillers. Those who continue to exercise and stay at a healthy weight can reduce their risk of developing serious joint problems down the road.
Forgetfulness can be quite frustrating, but caregivers should keep in mind that memory loss is a perfectly natural part of growing older. Seniors often forget where they have placed their eyeglasses or who was with them when they watched a certain movie. You can think of those issues as nothing more than minor annoyances. Caregivers only need to be worried if the memory loss becomes severe or is accompanied by other symptoms such as mood swings and aggressive behavior, which may indicate a more serious medical condition such as dementia.
A dementia diagnosis can be difficult for seniors and their families to face. If you need help caring for your aging loved one while he or she manages the challenges of dementia, turn to Home Care Assistance of Ft. Lauderdale. Dementia care isn’t the only thing we specialize in. All of our hourly and live-in caregivers are also trained to assist seniors during stroke recovery and help those living with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s maintain a higher quality of life.
3. Decreased Appetite
There are many reasons older adults lose their appetite, but most of them are not serious. Seniors are usually more sedentary than younger adults, which mean they need fewer calories throughout the day. If you are worried about your loved one’s health, ask his or her doctor about multivitamins that provide key vitamins and minerals. Check your loved one’s medication to see if loss of appetite is one of the side effects. Boosting your loved one’s appetite might involve something as simple as altering the time when he or she takes medication.
4. Skin Blemishes
The skin is incredibly resilient when people are younger, but it can become damaged as the years go by. Aging bodies produce less elastin, collagen, and other proteins that keep skin healthy. The only time you should be worried about your loved one’s skin blemishes is if they grow quickly in a short time.
5. Vision Impairment
Around the age of 40, most adults will begin to notice vision problems such as macular degeneration and cataracts. While these issues can be irritating, they are a normal part of aging and can be taken care of with regular visits to the eye doctor. Just as with other age-related changes, catching vision problems early allows seniors and their eye doctors to come up with a comprehensive treatment plan to slow the rate of degeneration.
Caregivers can usually manage most of these age-related changes. However, for more serious medical conditions that limit your loved one’s mobility, you may want to hire a professional caregiver who can assist him or her with daily tasks. For seniors living in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, part-time care can be a wonderful solution when they need companionship and socialization a few hours a week or just need minor assistance with daily household tasks. At Home Care Assistance, we thrive on helping seniors maintain their independence while living in the comfort of home. For more information on our senior care services and to schedule a no-obligation consultation, contact a Care Manager at (954) 909-0370.