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Aging & Fulfilling retirement: challenges faced by seniors

Aging comes with a set of challenges beyond bent backs and aching joints. Here are the most common challenges faced by seniors that affect their overall health. It includes:

  1. Loneliness:

This is one of the major problems that many older adults face in the US. Usually, when they get old and retire from their work, they no longer have people around them to talk to and share their feelings with. Children usually move away for better work opportunities and a significant partner or close one passes away. All these changes make them exceptionally lonely and often contribute to depression, anxiety, and isolation.

Sometimes grief of losing their loved ones becomes more prominent as they age because their social and emotional support changes over time and increases their feelings of isolation and depression.

That’s why they need emotional social support from their family and friends to lead a good life.

  • Healthcare costs:

As we get older, our mental and physical health starts to decline which increases our healthcare costs. We are more prone to diseases and health issues that we often need screenings and treatment to prevent or manage the existing conditions. All this impacts the retirement budget.

In 2014, a study showed that the average healthcare cost of a person who is 65 years of age and getting older was $19,098, which is almost 3 times more than that working-age individual average cost of $7, 153. That’s why you should be signed up for Medicare programs to cover some of your healthcare expenses, not everything but it will help. However, keep in mind, even considering Medicare coverage, on average you need to spend 15% of an individual’s spending on healthcare costs by age 75.

You can consider long-term care programs of various models such as personal funds, private financing options, and government programs to reduce your healthcare costs.

  • Financial security:

As with new advancements, living costs are rising but seniors only have a fixed income source which restricts their financial prospects. That’s why most people may not be able to live life as comfortably as they used to. And most individuals live longer than previous generations. With this increased life expectancy, while it’s a positive thing, it can become a stress point for seniors who are concerned about funding those extra years.

Healthcare and living costs will continue to add up as you get older, while funds in retirement accounts may not grow as much as needed. Currently, around ⅓ of current workers aged 55 through 65 live poor after retirement.

So, don’t take the risk and talk with a financial advisor to create planning for seniors which helps you in funding long-term expenses while maintaining your financial assets.

  • Physical aging:

As we age, we experience drastic changes in our body, our eyes are not able to see as clearly as they used to be, bones start to weaken, and muscles loosen and reduce in size. This affects daily functioning and increases the risk of falls, injuries, and other health complications.

In fact, 85.6% of individuals 65 years and older have at least one or more chronic conditions which means half of the adults may have at least 2 chronic conditions by the age of 85.

Other than that, seniors also experience a decline in cognitive function which affects their processing speed, executive cognitive function, and working memory. Additionally, it increases the rate of neuronal dysfunction and loss, which reduces cognition and makes seniors unable to maintain their functional ability.

These changes may impair a senior’s ability to maintain independence which lowers their self-esteem and leads to depression. That’s why focusing on nutrition and exercise becomes a necessity as we age because without them, we become more vulnerable to diseases and health issues. Even a walk, some fresh air, and sunshine can help get you vitamin D.

  • Physical assistance:

As you age, your body starts to decline, you need to rely on caregivers or other members of the family for daily functions such as visiting doctors, cleaning the house, getting groceries, or even activities like eating and bathing. Around 40 to 53% of individuals over the age of 85 need such assistance in daily care.

However, not all seniors have reliable family or friends who can act as caregivers. Most of the time, older people feel like a burden to their loved ones. The transition from full independence to needing support even for personal hygiene also damages their self-esteem and may cause depression. That’s why the involvement of caregivers is important in life for those seniors who need them and get the quality assistance they deserve.

Lack of caregiver support can prevent access to important healthcare needs such as doctor’s appointments, medical treatment, and improving mental health. In case you don’t have someone then, you can opt for in-home care services which help you with your doctor’s appointments and help with some other errands such as housekeeping, meal preparation, and assistance with daily living activities as required.

Keep in mind that these assistance services come at a hefty price. So, you may need substantial savings to get this type of service in the future.

If you need help with older adults’ health problems, visit our clinic in Brooklyn. The professionals at Doral Health & Wellness and House calls Home Care are excellent resources for learning more about how aging may affect your  loved ones. A person with a chronic illness or a handicap can benefit from better continuity and coordination of treatment by enrolling in a managed long-term care program. Consult your family doctor before beginning any new fitness or activity program. Feel free to contact us on + 1-347-384-5690 or via email at info@doralhw.org if you have any more questions.

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