Geriatric Project

GeriatricProject

GeriatricProject

Significanceof preventive andhealthcareandhealthpromotion

Healthpromotionandpreventionof diseaseamong theelderlyprovidesthepotential forenhancingthequalityof lifeof thisgrowingpopulation,whilereducingthefinancialburdenon thehealthcaresystem.Inessence,preventivehealthcareandhealthpromotionservesto reducethenumberof yearslostin theeventof prematuremortalityandensuringthattheelderlyleada quality lifein theremainingnumberof years(Resnick, 2001).Thisis accomplishedby helpingtheelderlyadoptbehaviorsthat will not subjectthem to healthriskandaccessappropriatehealthcareserviceswhentheygetill.

Physicalandmentalhealthproblemsof aging

Figure1: physicalandmentaleffectsof aging

Physical problems

Effect on functionality

Decline in peripheral vision

Inability to see distant objects

Weakening of bones and muscles

Inability to move body parts

Ear defects

Inability to hear properly.

Mental problems

Effect on functionality

Dementia

Deteriorates intellectual ability

Alzheimer’s Disease

Reduces ability to form new memories

Motor over-activity

Cause restlessness and inability to make decisions

Source:American Psychology Association (2014)

Concernsof olderpeopleandfamiliesof theelderly

Althougholderadultsenjoyenhanced physicalfunctionandlongerlivesthan before,there are three majorissuesof concernthat affectthem andtheir families.First,theincreasein thecostof housingis a significantchallengeto thispollutionandthefamilyof theelderly(Cire, 2012). Secondly,theincreasein thecostof healthpreventstheelderlyfrom accessingqualityhealth.Third,long-term medicalconditions,suchas obesity (affectingabout 40 % of peopleaged60 yearsandabove) are a pressingchallenge(Skarnulis, 2014).

Age-relatedchanges

Problemsin thedigestive system(includingpoorabsorption,metabolism, anddistribution)areassociatedwith unhealthybehaviorandmentalchangesthat occurin oldage.Forexample,olderpersonsare likelyto experiencestomachupsetorlackof appetitewhentheyfeeldepressedorlonely(Smith &amp Gove, 2005). In addition,olderpeoplehavea limitedbowel movement,which contributedtowards theoccurrenceof constipation.Changesin thebodytemperature(temperatureextremes)may havenegativeeffectson thedigestive system.Apartfrom givingmedicationto addresstheseproblemsof thedigestive system,nursesshould helptheadultshavesomephysicalexerciseto facilitatethebowel movement,encouragethem to takemorefluidsforstablebodytemperatures,andensuretheyundergocounseling sessionsto preventdepressionanda feelingof loneliness(Smith &amp Gove, 2005).

Demographictrendsof aging

Currently,about 13 % (40 million) of theU.S. populationare aged65 yearsandabove andthisis expectedto growto20 % (72 million) by theyear2030 (Cire, 2012).Theprevalenceof chronichealthconditions(includinghypertensionanddiabetes) is higheramong non-Hispanic Black andnon-Hispanic White. Prevalenceof chronicconditionschangesamong thetwo gendersin an unpredictablemanner.Forexample,hypertension is moreprevalentamong women,whilearthritisis moreprevalentamong theelderlymen(Cire, 2012).

References

AmericanPsychology Association (2014). Older adults’ health and age-relatedchanges. APA.Retrieved 16, 2015, fromhttp://www.apa.org/pi/aging/resources/guides/older.aspx

Cire,B. (2012). Federalreport details health, economic status of elder Americans.New York: National Institute of Health.

Resnick,B. (2001). Geriatric health promotion. WebMed,LLC.Retrieved February 16, 2015, fromhttp://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/408406

Skarnulis,L. (2014). Seven health challenges of aging. WebMD.Retrieved 16, 2015, fromhttp://www.webmd.com/healthy-aging/features/aging-health-challenges

Smith,S. &amp Gove, E. (2005). Physicalchanges of aging.Gainesville, FL: University of Florida.

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