Thanks to advances in medicine and health care, people today are living longer than ever before and their senior years can be active and fulfilling. However, that does not mean that your body is the same now as it was when you were 20. Your body has changed over the years, often in ways you do not notice or realize. Just as there are medical specializations dealing with children’s’ health, women health, sports medicine and so on, there is also a specialization in the health of senior citizens. It is known as geriatric medicine and it focuses on the medical issues and diseases associated with aging.
The Problems With Aging
As you age, you will find that there are activities that you could easily do in the past that are now becoming increasingly difficult. Generally speaking, this is normal and not a cause for concern. However, because your body is aging, they could also be signs of health issues that need to be addressed to prevent them from escalating into more serious concerns. Remember, an older body is less able to fight off and recover from sickness and injury than a younger one.
There are some health issues that are common as you age. Getting regular checkups from a geriatric specialist will allow for treatment to begin early so as to minimize the effects and maximize the speed and quantum of recovery. Among these are:
- Vision loss
- Hearing loss
- Heart disease
- Constipation and incontinence
- Cognitive impairment
- Balance and equilibrium issues
- Respiratory diseases
- And more
Age Is Not Just A Number
Common sayings like “You are as old as you feel” and “Age is just a number” reflect the active lives that seniors now live. But they are only partially true. If you are near or over 60, your body has changed and its medical needs are different. Getting the health care you need from a specialist in geriatric medicine will enable you to remain as active as possible and assist in the recovery from sickness and injury. Listen to your body and when the signs of problems arise, have them checked up. Often there may be signs of age-related problems that you may not notice but which your family members do. Listen to what they have to say and consult a geriatrician. The signs of aging are not things to be frightened of or hidden. They are part of the natural life cycle. With the right medical care and treatment, controlling them and living a comfortable and active life is possible.
If you are over 60, your primary health care should be given to a geriatric specialist. He will be able to evaluate your health based on age-related factors and prescribe the treatment that is right for you or, if required, refer you to a specialist. A hospital with a specialized geriatric care clinic will offer the most comprehensive health care for senior citizens to enable them to maintain, and often improve, the quality of their lives.