The bad news is that a variety of diseases and conditions are more likely to occur with age, including high blood cholesterol, high blood pressure, kidney disease, heart disease, diabetes, Parkinson’s, shingles, stroke, cancer, osteroporosis, arthritis, and urinary issues. The good news is that some good choices early on can help to minimize or delay the onset of many of these struggles.
By educating people before they need a senior lifestyle community, they can one day arrive at their golden years with a healthier and more vibrant outlook. The goal of early adult education is the prevention of disease.
Regular doctor visits are wise due to some conditions not being obvious, such as high blood pressure or sleep apnea. If left untreated, these can lead to stroke, heart disease, eye problems, kidney failure, and other health problems.
Regular dentist visits can protect teeth by cleaning off plaque that can disease the gums and harm the enamel on bones. Time spent brushing and flossing since childhood can mean fewer headaches with gingivitis and the discomfort of losing teeth later in life.
Changing day-to-day habits (what you eat and how much physical activity you have) can lower blood pressure, along with taking medicine as prescribed. Many Americans consume fast food and processed food, but a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy products may have a huge impact on health, especially in the long run.
Vigorous exercise daily for as little as 30 minutes can greatly impact health for the positive, experts say. Check first with your doctor before starting an exercise plan. Find out more from the National Institute of Aging at www.nia.nih.gov/Go4Life.
The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute recommends avoiding smoking and limiting use of caffeine and alcoholic beverages. Cutting down on salt also helps. If you snore or sound like you stop breathing for moments while you sleep, this could be a sign of sleep apnea. Treating it can help a variety of other conditions.
Factor in race and family history. Some diseases are more prevalent within certain groups, but this also means a head start on diagnosing and treating conditions we are more likely to encounter. Dementia is a key concern for families when an elder ages. Treatment focuses primarily on helping to lessen the impact of Alzheimer’s while researchers look for medications to regulate neurotransmitters. Avoid harsh sunlight to skip melanoma. Get the vaccine to avoid shingles.
Some health struggles are at least partially avoidable. Others are not.
Bladder control becomes a problem for many seniors. Kegel exercises can help tighten the pelvic floor muscles to better control urination. Some medicines can help as well. Male incontinence or erectile dysfunction may be caused by a variety of conditions; an enlarged prostate or cardiovascular disease may be the culprit.
Senior Living Communities help those of advanced age deal with their health struggles. We attempt to do so with compassion and dignity. To learn more about Regency, call us at (205) 752-5500.
Choices made in our 30s, 40s and 50s can pay rewards for the rest of our lives, leading to health and activity well into our advancing years. People are living longer, so it is more important than ever to increase not only the quantity of life, but also the quality of it.