As the saying goes, ‘old age is a privilege denied to many.’ And it’s true, so many die of accidents or illnesses far before their years, not everyone gets the luxury of living to their elderly years. However, old age isn’t exactly a walk in the park either, and with old age comes increased risk. Here are some things to be aware of, especially if you’re caring for an elderly loved one.
Increased risk of accident
As we age our reaction times slow down, meaning situations that would once have been easy to avoid become more problematic. As there’s no upper driving age in many countries, it’s up to the individual to decide when they’re no longer safe on the roads. Unfortunately, many people wait until they’ve had an accident or at least a scare to hand in their driving license. If you’re caring for someone, keep an eye on their driving. It can be hard giving up your car, especially when you’re older and have been used to driving your entire life. But your safety, and that of other road users is paramount. Other accidents can occur as mobility issues can lead to trips and falls, which can be dangerous for older adults.
Increased risk of illness and disease
Unfortunately as humans we tend to ‘wear out’ the older we get. Our hearing and eyesight starts to fail, our skin goes saggy and wrinkly and internally, we can develop cancers or be more prone to things going wrong. There’s not too much you can do about this, other than attend all of your screenings and live a lifestyle that’s as healthy as possible. Medical care these days is excellent, but in many cases relies on early detection, so be vigilant. Discuss any unusual symptoms with your doctor and don’t put it off.
Chance of not being looked after adequately
Getting older can lead you to lose your independence, especially if you start developing medical issues. Not only can this affect your wellbeing, but it also puts you in a vulnerable position, as you’re in the hands of others who you’re relying on to look after you. If you’re unable to care for a loved one yourself, it can be worrying putting them into a home due to instances of nursing home abuse. If you suspect this has happened, a legal firm like Gray and White Law can bring the perpetrators to justice.
More likely to feel lonely or isolated
Research shows that over half of older adults report feeling lonely and isolated. This occurs often when people lose their partner, topped off with mobility issues making it difficult to get out of the house they can easily end up alone for most of the time. If you have an elderly loved one in your life, make the effort to see them. Take them out or just visit them and spend quality time with them, it will mean more to them than you probably realise.