Ignoring or dismissing aches, pains and general medical problems is not uncommon, especially among the senior population. Whether due to pride or embarrassment, the elderly often attribute their ailments to the natural aging process, even when such changes impact their ability to carry out daily activities.
If you notice that your loved one is having difficulty performing activities of daily living, offer assistance or consider hiring an in-home caregiver in Cincinnati to help with chores such as cooking, cleaning and transportation. Also, keep an eye out for the following changes in health which warrant a check-up with the family doctor. These often ignored symptoms may be indicative of a more serious health problem.
- Changes in Bowel Habits – Constipation may be a common occurrence for some seniors, but if it comes on suddenly or is accompanied by other symptoms, this can point to a bigger problem such as irritable bowel syndrome or even colon cancer. Blood in the stools, alternating between constipation and diarrhea and bowel urgency are just a few things the physician may need to check.
- Skin Discoloration and Bruising – With age, skin loses elasticity and undergoes several changes. For this reason, some seniors may falsely believe that increased bruising or skin discoloration is normal. However, bruising and skin discoloration can be caused by medications such as blood thinners and medical conditions that may affect red blood cells and clotting times.
- Exhaustion and Fatigue – The expression “old and tired” does not always hold true. If a loved one is experiencing a significant amount of fatigue, there is likely an underlying cause. Vitamin and mineral deficiencies, anemia and the worsening of a current health condition may be to blame. Without a thorough checkup, this can negatively impact overall health and impose physical limitations for the senior.
These are just a few of the most common symptoms that may be chalked up to “old age”. These symptoms often serve as one of the first indicators that another health condition is present. A good rule of thumb is to contact the family doctor when mom or dad is experiencing a new or worsening symptom to rule out illness and prevent a decline of any current conditions.
And if your aging loved one is in need of a bit of extra help at home, whether a few hours a day or a few days a week, visit our website at www.homecareassistancecincinnati.com for more information about home care or contact a friendly Care Manager directly at 513-891-2273.