5 Most Common Illnesses Affecting Seniors

What you do for the first half of your life will manifest in the second half of your life, they say about health. We couldn’t agree more. There are millions of seniors suffering from long-term medical conditions and the number keeps on increasing by the year. However, advancement in the medical field had given the aging population the chance to live longer than before. Therefore, living with medical conditions has become more manageable. Plus, a lot of us now have medical insurance. Still, prevention is better than cure. So we’ve rounded up the most common illnesses affecting the seniors to give you a better understanding of how to deal with them. This includes the symptoms and treatments available for each medical condition.

Here’s our guide to the frequent medical conditions that tend to affect older people.

1. Arthritis

This is a painful inflammation and deterioration of tissue inside the joints. It can result in restricted movement of the area and an overall weakness within the joints affected. It is very common in almost all continents and is even associated as a sign of aging. It is best then to hire a financial advisor to help you manage your funds while you still can. Arthritis has two further classifications: Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis. The common one that affects most older people is the osteoarthritis. This is like the natural wear and tear of our joints. Symptoms include joint pain, tenderness, stiffness, and inflammation around the area, restricted movement of joints.

To some degree, there’s an increased risk of falling when you have arthritis since your joints are unable to fully support you. While there’s no cure for this illness, there are treatments available such as painkillers and corticosteroids, which can help slow down the condition.

2. Hypertension

Another long-term health condition is hypertension. It is when the blood pressure in the arteries is consistently high. The only way to find out if you have elevated blood pressure is to have it checked. A physical manifestation of hypertension is rare. When the blood pressure reaches a critical level, then you’ll experience severe headaches and anxiety, chest pain, and palpitations. This state is known as hypertensive. When your blood pressure is too high, you’ll put a lot of strain on your vital organs like the heart and kidneys. Most serious medical conditions credit hypertension as the leading cause.

If not managed, this could lead to heart attack, kidney diseases, vascular dementia, stroke, and heart failure. Fortunately, this can be treated and managed. Treatment includes changing your diet, leading an active lifestyle, and in some cases, a prescription medicine. Investment on some medical devices like sphygmomanometer is also helpful.

3. Asthma

Asthma is another long-term medical that occurs when the body’s airways are overreacting to allergens and they become inflamed. Asthma attacks can be quite alarming as it causes the airway muscles to tighten and narrow making it hard to breathe. Symptoms of an attack include wheezing or coughing, tight sensation in the chest, and being out of breath most of the time. This can go worse if you have a cold or flu. In worst cases, it can be life-threatening if left unmanaged. Your doctor may prescribe you an inhaler reliever in case of asthma attacks. If you have insurance, best to check if your regular visits to the doctor are covered.

4. Cancer

Cancer affects a third of the population at some point in our lives. There are more than 200 strains of cancer known to date. Cancer is a disease where your body replicates cells abnormally. This replication can then cause a mass or otherwise known as a tumor. So basically, any part of your body can develop these abnormal replications of cells like in your breasts, prostate, and lungs. In worse cases, this can spread out through your bloodstream, affecting more organs. Symptoms are usually unexplained weight loss, presence of blood in the urine, stool and while coughing or vomiting. Treatment is based on the affected organ but the survival rate for older people is low. It is then important to secure a good medical insurance plan so you can get checked regularly. Early diagnosis is the key to beating cancer.

5. Coronary Heart Disease

Coronary heart disease is a fatal illness that often leads to death according to data in the UK. This is the term used when your heart’s blood supply is blocked or interrupted by a build-up of fatty substances in the coronary arteries. While lifestyle choices can cause this damage to your heart, some known cause of this includes smoking, high cholesterol diet, diabetes, and obesity. At-risk individuals are often tested by their General Physical through treadmill tests, radionuclide scan, and CT Scan. Often, lifestyle changes with certain medications are recommended to the patients. In severe cases, surgery options help manage the disease. Make sure you are prepared for these types of tests and medical procedures with your health insurance.

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