While asthma is often associated with the childhood years, the fact is that it’s a chronic illness and must be managed throughout life. While some seniors were diagnosed with asthma in their younger years, others develop the condition as they age. And for those over 65 with asthma, there are special considerations. Here are a few things to watch out for if you’re concerned about breathing difficulties in a senior loved one.
Asthma in Seniors Can Be Difficult to Diagnose
The normal effects of aging as well as conditions like heart disease and emphysema that are more prevalent in older adults mask the symptoms of asthma. In addition, it’s often mistaken for COPD, which is challenging, since prevention and treatment strategies for that condition are quite different.
Many seniors with asthma find it challenging to handle daily tasks without assistance. Home care service professionals can be a wonderful boon to seniors. Whether they require around-the-clock supervision or just need assistance with exercise and household tasks a few days a week, seniors can enjoy a higher quality of life with the help of trusted in-home caregivers.
Asthma Medications Are More Likely to Have Adverse Effects on Seniors
With the medications typically used to treat asthma, older adults tend to experience unwanted side effects, such as an increased risk of glaucoma, at a higher rate than younger people. And because seniors often take multiple medications, there’s a much higher risk of adverse prescription interactions.
Seniors Often Develop a More Severe Form of Asthma
The natural changes in the shape of the lungs as we age can exacerbate the symptoms of asthma. And having asthma after age 65 decreases the effectiveness of vaccinations for the flu and pneumococcal viruses, both of which can lead to dangerous complications in seniors.
Every senior has different needs when aging in place. Some simply need occasional assistance with household chores, while others may be managing serious illnesses and require more extensive live in care Orlando seniors can count on Prestige Home Care to provide the in-home care they need and deserve.
Seniors Can Have Difficulty Taking Asthma Medication Properly
Inhaled asthma medication must be timed precisely to work effectively, but age-related issues such as arthritis and muscle weakness can make this process a challenge. If your loved one has asthma, have a caregiver monitor his or her medication schedule to ensure your loved one is using the inhaler correctly. If you take care of a family member who is diagnosed with asthma, work closely with his or her doctor to develop a treatment plan.
In Orlando home care providers can benefit aging adults in a variety of ways. From cooking nutritious meals to offering timely medication reminders, the dedicated caregivers at Prestige Home Care are available to help your elderly loved one 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For reliable in-home care services, contact us at (407) 232-7155.