Thrive in your golden years with a healthy lifestyle
People over the age of 65 tend to face more health concerns than earlier in life. However, ailments resulting from an active lifestyle could become more than just a nuisance.
For example, individuals who had physically demanding jobs, played sports or participated in outdoor hobbies may experience symptoms of arthritis well before the age of 65.
Above all, injury prevention is the first keystone to geriatric care. Preventing falls is more difficult than it seems because it requires a commitment to maintaining and improving one’s mobility, balance and overall strength.
A good fall prevention plan includes:
- > Removing tripping hazards inside and outside the home
- > Keeping hallways and paths well-lit
- > Using mobility devices (such as walkers, canes, etc.) when appropriate
- > Maintaining regular eye and hearing exams
> Talking with your provider about an individualized safety plan
Navigating other age-related challenges are also along the roadmap to a healthy lifestyle. With age comes natural changes in sleep patterns, weight and cognitive changes. These can be frustrating challenges, but a provider can help identify normal age-related changes versus underlying medical conditions.
Potential warning signs include:
- > Weight loss
- > Fatigue
- > Problems with eating
- > Dehydration
- > Electrolyte and vitamin imbalance
- > Pressure ulcers
- > Infection prevention
- > Hypothermia or heat stroke
- > Multiple medication management
While this seems like an overwhelming list, fear not, you and your provider can break these down into manageable steps.
Nurses are the unsung heroes of medicine and geriatric nurses are no exception, working with patients to create personalized care plans based on in-clinic or in-home medical assessments. Geriatric nurses work together with your provider to address medical needs proactively. They focus on cognitive health, mobility, home safety and help with the administration of medications and home treatments.
Annual visits with your primary care provider should be considered the perfect time to address these topics and other age-related health concerns, such as:
- > Immunizations for shingles, pneumonia, flu, tetanus and COVID-19
- > DEXA scan for bone health
- > Abdominal aortic aneurysm ultrasound
Medicare, Medicaid and several health plans recognize the importance of these visits, often covering the costs completely.
With the right mindset and tailored partnerships with geriatric nurses and your healthcare provider, embracing vitality as you age is as simple as scheduling a preventative visit today. With a holistic approach, these preventative visits are not about focusing on the aging process, but about thriving through your golden years.
To schedule an appointment, call 254-690-8887 or visit our website.