It is a recognized fact that the body changes as people age. In the early years of adulthood, the body is approaching a peak level of fitness and conditioning that tends to last until the early or mid-thirties. During this period, people commonly take part in sports and fitness activities at their highest possible levels of performance. For some, this may even be undertaken at a professional level of competition. Once people reach their mid-thirties, the body begins to enter a period of slow but gradual decline. This is the beginning of a stage of life where the aging effects on humankind start to occur. However, it is in the later stages of life when senior citizens may suffer from chronic health conditions that are often the result of old age. In this article, two common health conditions that affect the elderly will be explored in detail, with information on how they can be managed or treated.

Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s disease is a chronic and degenerative condition that commonly affects elderly people. It is estimated that approximately six million Americans suffer from the condition and most of these people are aged 65 or over. Alzheimer’s disease affects the functioning of the brain. In the early stages of the disease, people may struggle to remember simple facts (such as misplacing car keys regularly). As the condition develops, people may struggle to remember many different facts and may have difficulty undertaking basic tasks. They may even become disoriented when outside and forget where their home address is. When Alzheimer’s disease starts to have a tangible impact on daily life and personal safety, one of the best solutions is to move the person into a dedicated Alzheimer’s care facility where highly trained care staff can care for the patient and ensure that they live in a safe environment where the condition can be managed as far as possible. For Americans who live in Missouri, there are St. Louis Alzheimer’s care facilities that offer a high level of care to patients with this condition. Many of these facilities provide 24-hour care and undertake regular assessments of their patients to ensure that they are getting a tailored care package that suits their needs. Unfortunately, at present, there is no recognized cure for Alzheimer’s disease. However, the use of music therapy techniques has been demonstrated to be an effective way of managing the condition in its early stages.

Hypertension

Hypertension is the medical term for having high blood pressure and it is a common condition in elderly people. As people age, the blood vessels tend to become more rigid, and the heart begins to fill less efficiently than in earlier life. This can lead to the onset of hypertension, which increases the likelihood of developing serious medical conditions, such as strokes and a range of cardiovascular disorders. Thankfully, in many cases, hypertension can be managed effectively with changes to diet and lifestyle. Smoking and excessive alcohol consumption should be avoided, as these can dramatically increase a person’s blood pressure. In addition, a low-fat diet should be adopted that avoids the consumption of excessive amounts of sugar. Certain medications, such as ACE inhibitors, can also be used to control hypertension.

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