Senior citizens have specific health concerns that are unique to this population. As the body ages, a variety of medical conditions become more common.
- Alzheimer’s disease is a degenerative neurological condition in which memory and reasoning skills gradually deteriorate. It impacts cognition and affects roughly five million Americans.
- Cancer is another top health issue affecting seniors. It encompasses a wide range of diseases and can take many forms. The likelihood of developing many cancers increases with age.
- Depression is prevalent among the elderly, as well. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, over 6.5 million Americans aged 65 and older suffer from the condition. Depression is known for causing an overwhelming low mood that impacts quality of life.
- Diabetes is another top health concern for seniors. The risk of developing Type 2 diabetes gets higher with age. In fact, about one in four people over the age of 60 have diabetes. The condition occurs when the body is unable to create a sufficient amount of insulin.
When it comes to elderly health, slips and falls represent a major health concern. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in three adults aged 65 and older sustains a fall every year. Of these, 20 to 30 percent suffer moderate to severe injuries. Contracting the flu is also a common health concern. In extreme cases, it can even be fatal. In fact, 90 percent of flu-related deaths occur in people over the age of 65, according to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. Since older people already have a weakened immune system, they are especially susceptible to contracting the flu. Keeping both the mind and body active are crucial to maintaining our health as we age. A 2013 study even found that seniors who play video games are more likely to report elevated wellbeing.
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