My Health

Why Am I So Blue?

 

Feelings of grief, loneliness and financial insecurity are often considered parts of the normal aging process.

Depression involves a lot more than just feeling blue, however. According to the Geriatric Mental Health Foundation or GMHF, if left untreated, severe or clinical depression may seriously impact a person’s physical and mental well-being. Reported incidences of depression among adults aged 65 and above exceed 6.5 million. Unfortunately, only 10 percent seek medical treatment or psychological support.

Keep Your Eyes On Your Vision

Because the risks of developing eye diseases often increase as we age, it is very important that everyone aged 60 and above has a yearly eye exam with either an optometrist or ophthalmologist.

An optometrist is licensed to examine, diagnose and treat common eye conditions and diseases, and prescribe proper glasses and contact lenses.  An ophthalmologist is a physician who specializes in eye and vision care, as well as extensive medical and surgical treatments should their needs arise.

Dementia...or Not?

Many people fear that older adults who start to be very confused might have dementia – a slow, progressive decline in one’s ability to think. Besides confusion, dementia symptoms often include short-term memory loss and an inability or refusal to communicate with others. Fortunately, with proper medical diagnoses and treatments, certain dementia-like symptoms can be stopped, and their impacts reversed.

Examples of reversible dementia include:

Diabetes: The Silent Killer

Question:  Am I at greater risk of becoming diabetic just because I'm 65?

Answer: According to the American Geriatric Society, diabetes is one of the most common chronic diseases related to aging. More than 40 percent of all diabetics in the U.S. are aged 65 and above, and this current percentage is expected to increase.

Fall Prevention Tools

Many seniors who fall end up with broken bones. The cause of the broken bone is often osteoporosis – an age-related condition where bones lose their density or thickness, as well as their strength.

Are You Forgetting to Remember?

Mild memory lapses are part of the normal aging process.  The types of problems that often arise include forgetting where you left things, your neighbor’s first name, or even the reason you picked up that phone. Such a scenario is quite common with older adults.

Although for some seniors, memory problems may be indicative of more serious issues such as mild cognitive impairment (MCI) or Alzheimer’s disease, most are not. In MCI and Alzheimer’s, forgetfulness expands to include issues of thinking, judgment, recognizing and performing daily activities. 

Be Sure to Get the Right Amount of Sleep

Although most retired people are not as busy as they used to be, many report that they get very tired during the day, yet have trouble falling asleep at night.

The inability to sleep is one of the most common complaints that older adults report to their treating physicians. Seniors who do not get enough sleep may feel depressed, have attention and memory problems, and feel incredibly tired all day.

I Can’t Remember Names – Do I Have Alzheimer’s?

With the medical community's increasing understanding of the brain, it is now believed to be normal for aging to be accompanied by: mild memory loss concerning recent events; mild difficulty recalling names; misplacing objects; and slowed thinking (taking longer to find the answers to questions).

Dementia is Not Normal Aging

When memory loss progresses over time, and interferes with normal life, it goes beyond what would be expected as a part of normal aging. At this point, it may be evidence of a progressive memory loss disorder, or a "dementia."

Counting Sheep? Why You Can’t Fall Asleep

The inability to sleep is one of the most common complaints that older adults report to their treating physicians. Seniors who do not get enough sleep may feel depressed, have attention and memory problems, and feel incredibly tired all day.

Sleep problems may include waking frequently during the night, morning headaches, insomnia, and not feeling rested. Common factors leading to one’s inability to sleep include stress, overactive bladder disorders, and the excessive intake of alcohol or caffeine.

Should You Be Driving?

Families argue like they've never argued before. Neighbors file complaints against neighbors. Doctors report their patients. Seniors rail against the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). What's causing all the heat? Driving.

Undoubtedly, there are older adults who are driving who should not be driving. And, there are older adults who have lost their licenses who should not have lost them. We have an imperfect system, that is facing an important issue.

Syndicate content