We can’t stop getting older, and for some of us it’s a big concern. However, for others it might not be and they may not even consider what will happen. How exactly the march of time will impact us is not set in stone and actually our own unique circumstances will play a large part.
Our own DNA and genetics will have a say in what changes we will go through and to a certain extent the path to old age is predefined. However, our lifestyle choices we make throughout our lives will also have an impact for better or worse.
Despite our own unique experiences and heritage there are a number of changes we’ll all go through as we age. These will have implications on our mind and bodies so we need to consider what the health implications are. By understanding these as early as possible it will help us all prepare for the future most effectively, ultimately allowing us to get the most out of life.
As we get older there are more health issues that will occur. This is natural as our bodies are changing how they operate. Cells throughout the body will stop replacing themselves and this means that over time you will start to slow down. This is combined with the body’s immune system starting to slow down. This in turn makes us more vulnerable to illness and it’s harder to get over even minor infections.
On top of this you’ll find there are difficulties in physical movements. Normal actions like climbing out of a chair, or walking can be more challenging when you’re older. Muscles will become weaker over time and joint problems across the body can create real mobility problems. This means more reliance upon support both from technology, like stair lifts, and other people.
Bones can become more brittle as you age. This means that falls which are not as serious when you are younger can become much more serious in old age. This, combined with mobility issues, creates a real tangible health risk to older individuals.
Another big health risk can be from obesity. As your muscles weaken it can become much more difficult to stay in shape. Combined with a more sedentary lifestyle can lead to rapid health gain. Obesity has known implications on all your organs, and can put more strain on your heart.
Overall, ageing increases the risk of health issues by a huge factor. It’s not just that there are new risks but any illnesses your body could previously manage now become harder to fight. This means that being as healthy as possible, as early as possible, is extremely important.
When does age start impacting you?
We understand how much old age can impact your health, but at what age will we start to see a difference in how our body reacts? Of course, there is no right answer for this as every person ages differently but there are still some general trends based on existing information.
Research has been conducted relating to injury in middle and old aged people. The results have found that for the majority of people, 60 seems to be the age where the body might start to let us down. This is where we might start having movement issues and are at risk of major damage if we fall or have a similar accident.
The numbers for health issues of the mind are a little different. Generally, it is 65 or older that we start to see the mind deteriorate. That being said there are a number of diseases which can come from an earlier age, but these are thankfully fairly rare.
There is no set formula for when things start to change so if you are approaching that age there’s no immediate need to worry. With the right lifestyle and with the correct levels of support around you then you might not face any significant health challenges until much later on in life.
“The bible of eldercare”—ABC World News. “An indispensable book”—AARP. “A compassionate guide of encyclopedic proportion”—The Washington Post. And, winner of a Books for a Better Life Award. How to Care for Aging Parents is the best and bestselling book of its kind, and its author, Virginia Morris, is the go-to person on eldercare for the media, appearing on Oprah, TODAY, and Good Morning America, among many other outlets.
How to Care for Aging Parents is an authoritative, clear, and comforting source of advice and support for the ever-growing number of Americans—now 42 million—who care for an elderly parent, relative, or friend. And now, in its third edition, it is completely overhauled and updated, chapter-by-chapter and page-by-page, with the most recent medical findings and recommendations. It includes a whole new chapter on fraud; details on the latest “aging in place” technologies; more helpful online resources; and everything you need to know about current laws and regulations. Also new are fill-in worksheets for gathering specifics on medications; caregivers’ names, schedules, and contact info; doctors’ phone numbers and addresses; and other essential information in one handy place at the back of the book.
From having that first difficult conversation to arranging a funeral and dealing with grief—and all of the other important issues in between—How to Care for Aging Parents is the essential guide.
An Aging Parent Who --
- Blames you for everything that goes wrong?
- Cannot tolerate being alone, wants you all the time?
- Is obsessed with health problems, real, or imagined?
- Make unreasonable and/or irrational demands of you?
- Is hostile, negative and critical?
Coping with these traits in parents is an endless high-stress battle for their children. Though there's no medical defination for "difficult" parents, you know when you have one. While it's rare for adults to change their ways late in life, you can stop the vicious merry-go-round of anger, blame, guilt and frustration.
For the first time, here's a common-sense guide from professionals, with more than two decades in the field, on how to smooth communications with a challenging parent. Filled with practical tips for handling contentious behaviors and sample dialogues for some of the most troubling situations, this book addresses many hard issues, including:
As our lifespans continue to grow longer, millions of people every year spend time caring for the elderly and dying—some as professionals, some as volunteers, and some through their loving but demanding care for parents, spouses, or other family members or friends.
In her book In the Mystery’s Shadow, Susan Swetnam draws on her experience serving thousands of ill and dying clients, often in hospice programs, as a certified massage therapist—and also on her experience of caring for her own husband, who died young of cancer. She explains how this sometimes difficult work offers not just the fulfillment of giving comfort to people who need it, but also moments of breathtaking wonder, moments that hint at the untold complexity of being human and affirm our sacred connections with each other. She writes of the hard lessons caregivers learn about themselves, while at the same time knowing the strange and humbling sense of being used in the service of God’s love. Insightfully connecting end-of-life care with the liturgical year, Swetnam invites those who care for the sick and dying, whether professional or volunteer, to stay awake to the sacred implications of their labors.
Care and Support
As we can see there can be unique and real challenges as we age. For an individual, the difficulties will be in properly taking care of themselves and ensuring they have everything they need. Families and friends may form a support network but even these can struggle if there are specific care needs.
Specific care services and support can be found in various care homes. Each home will typically offer a variety of different options for care, depending on your needs. The best care providers will look after not only physical needs but emotional too. By building communities and arranging activities they can stop any residents from feeling the loneliness of being away from home.
Care homes are an important of ensuring that as people get older they get the care and support they need. Aged care assessment services will allow you to assess what is needed and find care needs to suit.
Staying young and avoiding the health implications that come with old age all starts with the choices you make. Exercise and diet will play a large part in keeping your youthful energy. Similarly, it’s important to keep your mind stimulated as much as possible with activities and hobbies.
We can’t stop the aging effect, it’s part of the cycle of life, however by making adjustments early you can help limit the effects until as late as possible. This will give you the most freedom as you age and ultimately let you enjoy life for much longer