September is National Aging Awareness Month!

National Aging® Awareness Month focuses on practical ways for adults, ages 45-plus, to improve their physical and mental well-being and take control of their health!

 

Get the Facts

  • Falls are very common in older adults. Many falls cause only minor injuries, but some can be life-changing and cause older adults to restrict their activities.
  • Memory concerns often cause anxiety for older adults and families. They may — or may not — reflect substantial decreases in thinking abilities.
  • Although healthy older adults have lower rates of depression than the general public, depression is still a common problem that is easily missed. It’s more common in those who are struggling with illness, involved in caregiving, or socially isolated.
  • About 50% of all adults aged 65+ experience bothersome pain every month, often in multiple parts of the body. Persisting pain is linked with decreased social and physical activity, depression, and taking worse care of one’s own health. Pain can also be a sign of a new health problem that needs attention or a chronic problem that’s being poorly managed.
  • Both isolation (not having a lot of social contact with others) and loneliness (the feeling of lacking social connection) have been linked to declines in physical health. A 2012 study found that 43% of older adults reported feeling lonely; over the next 6 years, they were more likely to lose physical abilities or die. Loneliness and isolation have also been linked to decreased immune function and a greater risk of depression.
  • Polypharmacy means taking multiple medications. It’s a problem mainly because as people get older, they become especially at risk for harm from medication side-effects or interactions.
  • According to the CDC, every year 177,000 older adults visit the emergency room due to medication problems.

Take Action.

  • Exercise can be as simple as walking just ten or fifteen minutes, three to four times a week, and increasing as you go.
  • For those who are more active, try taking up tennis or joining a club where you can swim or use the exercise equipment.  Even just taking a dance class or senior yoga, gardening, or mowing the lawn.
  • Consider proper portion sizes when eating.  Eating larger portions than recommended leads to obesity, diabetes, and/or heart disease.
  • Keeping your mind active and engaged may ward changes that could lead to Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Be pos­i­tive in your con­ver­sa­tions and your actions every day.
  • Stay Social. Don’t be afraid to make new friends, and make an effort to see your old friends, too. A sedentary lifestyle devoid of interaction with friends and family leads to health issues and isolation can lead to depression.
  • Maintain regularly scheduled visits to your healthcare provider.
  • If you feel pains or symptoms, do not ignore them.  See your provider immediately.

 

Call Community Health Net to schedule an appointment with a provider today: (814) 455-7222. Or visit www.communityhealthnet.org for more information.

Our health information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Please be advised that this information is made available to assist the public to learn more about their health. Community Health Net providers may not see and/or treat all topics found herein.

Health Facts is a public service partnership of Community Health Net and CF Cares of Country Fair Stores, Inc.

Call us at (814) 455-7222