Aug 7, 2017 by Comfort Keepers
Many seniors believe that painful joints are a normal part of aging. While joint issues are more common in seniors than in other age groups, joint pain is not a normal part of growing older and should not be accepted as such.
The most common joint issue among seniors is arthritis. Actually, arthritis is not a condition in and of itself. Instead, it is a name for over 100 different chronic joint diseases. The most common form of arthritis is osteoarthritis, which refers to the degeneration of the cartilage that is supposed to act as a cushion between the bones forming a joint. The majority of seniors have osteoarthritis in at least one joint. Other common forms of arthritis include rheumatoid arthritis and gout.
While arthritis may be the most common joint disorder, there are many other ailments that impact American seniors, for example: tendonitis, carpel tunnel, frozen shoulder, bone spurs, and degenerative disc disease. Each of these ailments is different, but they have a common outcome: joint issues lead to pain, a loss of mobility, and a decreased quality of life.
Comfort Keepers in-home care can help seniors maintain their independence while being able to safely reside in the comfort of their own home. Consider these three advantages to senior care:
1. Daily living tasks can be difficult if not impossible with joint issues. Care providers can help with the chores or provide personal care assistance. From light housekeeping and laundry to medication management and meal preparation, senior care personnel literally lighten the load.
2. Maintaining a healthy weight. Speaking of meal preparation, nutritious meals not only help with weight loss (which eases the pressure on the joints), but there are many meals which actually have medicinal value e.g. the anti-inflammatory diet (yes, it's a real thing!). In addition to helping with the physical preparation of meals, senior care associates can help with the planning, shopping, clean-up, and even the eating of the meal. After all, sharing a meal is way more fun than eating alone.
3. Exercise. In addition to eating well, exercise will help lower weight, which – as already noted – will be rewarded by less painful joints. It may seem counterintuitive to exercise joints which are already painful and swollen. Yet, by slowly working the joints and strengthening the muscles around them, the joints become more stable and the fluid which helps lubricate the joints keeps flowing. Seniors who are worried about stability, pain, or falling may benefit from a senior care provider working alongside them for physical and emotional support.
If your loved one has joint issues, these are just a few of the many ways senior care personnel can help. For more information about these areas, or to discuss other ways a senior care provider can help maximize your loved one's independence and quality of life, contact Comfort Keepers today.