Most Common Health Problems in the Elderly

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If you are taking care of an elderly adult, it is beneficial to know more about some of the most common health problems in the elderly. If you can learn more about these issues, you can gain a better understanding as to what might be going on with your loved one. You can also work to prevent some of these issues if you know more about them, as well.

Skin Issues

Age spots, wrinkles, and skin dryness all happen as someone gets older. Elderly adults don’t have as many oil glands and they don’t perspire as much, either. This increases the dryness of their skin. In addition, elderly adults have skin that thins out as they age. This makes the skin look less smooth. If an elderly adult smokes, this causes damage to their skin, too. There are also medications that cause skin dryness.

Some of the ways to prevent skin issues in the elderly are to keep safe from sun exposure, get a skin check annually from one’s doctor, increase the humidity in one’s home, don’t take too hot of showers, staying hydrated, and getting a shingles vaccine. If your loved one needs help with these things, they can get it from you or their elder care provider.

Elder Care in Fairfax VADental Issues

There are many dental issues that elderly adults might face, as well. As someone gets older, the enamel in their teeth wears down. The bacteria in their mouth is more likely to cause cavities and tooth decay. Gum disease is more common in the elderly, too. In addition, dry mouth is very common in the elderly, mostly due to the medications they take.

Some of the ways to prevent dental issues in the elderly are brushing and flossing 2 times each day, cleaning dentures with the appropriate products, drinking enough water, getting a dental exam once or twice a year, and quitting smoking. As a loved one, you can make sure the elderly adult in your life does these things.

Sensory Issues

Hearing and vision issues are two of the main problems that occur in the elderly. Eyesight generally starts getting worse when someone is around 40 years of age. Hearing loss generally starts happening between the ages of 65 to 75 years of age. Hearing and vision loss can cause anger, self-esteem issues, and depression.

Some of the ways to prevent vision issues are to have a yearly exam at the eye doctor, eat nutritiously, quit smoking, and wear eye protection when needed. Some of the ways to prevent hearing issues are to avoid loud noises, speak with the doctor about any medications that might affect hearing, find out the family history of hearing medical issues, and get an annual hearing test. Make sure your elderly loved one does these things if they want to prevent hearing issues.

These are some of the most common health problems in the elderly. Now that you know more about them, you can help your elderly loved one to prevent these issues in their life.


If you or an aging loved one is considering elder care in Fairfax, VA, please contact the caring staff at Assisting Hands today. (703) 982-0050.