10 Most Common Health Mistakes Seniors Make
By Kim Boyer
- Driving when it’s no longer safe. Seniors often associate mobility in a car with their independence, but knowing when it is time to stop driving is important.
- Fighting the aging process and its appearance. Seniors who refuse to wear a hearing aid, eyeglasses or dentures, or to use walking aids are not receiving helpful assistance and it could be dangerous.
- Reluctance to discuss intimate health problems with the doctor. Sometimes problems that the senior thinks are trivial, such as stomach upsets, constipation, or jaw pain, may require further evaluation.
- Not understanding what the doctor told them. Reluctance to ask the doctor to repeat information or to admit that they do not understand what is being said, can result in serious consequences.
- Disregarding the serious potential for a fall. Seniors should remove scatter rugs, have adequate lighting, wear sturdy shoes and watch for cracks and slopes in sidewalks. Participating in exercise programs to improve muscle tone and strength also helps.
- Failure to manage medicines. Seniors should maintain a complete list of all their prescription and over-the-counter medicines, including dose and reason being taken. By using daily schedules, pill box reminders or check-off records, seniors can avoid missing doses.
- Not having a single physician who looks at the over all medical plan for treatment. The patient may be over or under treated if a single physician is not evaluating the full medical treatment program.
- Not seeking medical attention when early possible warning signs occur. Treatment delays can result in a more advanced stage of illness and a poorer prognosis.
- Failure to participate in prevention programs. Seniors should get flu and pneumonia shots, routine breast or prostate exams.
- Not asking loved ones for help. It’s important that elderly people alert family members or other loved ones to any signs of ill health or unusual feelings so that they can be assessed.
This information is for general informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. For specific questions, you should consult a qualified attorney.