There might have been a point in the past when the 60s were considered old age and when people simply expected to be ill by that time. However, nowadays things have changed significantly and for the better. With new medical advances not only have we found new and effective ways of treating different health problems, but we also have the information on how to prevent them from developing in the first place. Here are some of the most common health issues you might face in your sixties and some suggestions for preventing them.
Arthritis is the tenderness or swelling of your joints, which can lead to stiffness and severe pain, and which usually worsens as you age. There are several types of arthritis, the most common ones being osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Osteoarthritis happens when the cartilage on your joints gets worn down or torn. And since cartilage is like a cushion at the end of your bones, whose purpose is to allow frictionless movement, when it thins out and even disappears, your bones start rubbing against each other, causing pain.
On the other hand, rheumatoid arthritis occurs when your immune system starts attacking the membrane around the joint parts, which causes inflammation and swelling and can lead to severe damage to cartilage and subsequently the bone. And even though there isn’t a definite way of preventing arthritis, you can somewhat reduce the risk of getting it or delay it to an extent. A healthy and balanced diet might be helpful, especially since it can help you maintain normal weight and put less pressure on your joints. Also, if you’re physically active, be careful, so as to prevent any injury which can lead to some types of arthritis in your future.
Problems with senses
After turning sixty, you can expect some issues with your hearing and eyesight. As far as your hearing is concerned, it tends to deteriorate as you grow older. This age-related hearing loss is also known as presbycusis and it’s a condition that can affect both your ears, making it difficult to function on a day-to-day level. It can be caused by changes in your inner ear or your middle ear, but also from changes in the function of the nerve pathways leading from your ear to your brain. You can lower your chances of age-related hearing impairment by protecting your ears from loud noises or avoiding them as much as you can.
When it comes to your eyesight, some frequent problems include dry eyes, tearing, and glaucoma, but also cataract. In case of cataract, your vision gets cloudy and it seems to you as if you’re looking at things through the fog. This is a condition which progresses with time and may require you to wear glasses or even have a surgical intervention. Fortunately, these surgeries are a safe and effective way of treatment, and if, for instance, you’re Australian, having your laser eye surgery in Sydney is now easier than ever, with leading surgeons at your disposal. However, if your aim is to avoid getting cataract, you can try by eating foods rich in vitamins C and E, quitting smoking and drinking alcohol and protecting your eyes from the sun with quality sunglasses.
Coronary heart disease
This is a very frequent condition affecting the elderly, and one of the leading causes of death after the age of 60. The risk of developing this disease gets enhanced if you’re overweight, suffer from hypertension or your glucose tolerance is impaired. The first step towards the prevention of coronary heart disease is a healthy lifestyle, which includes a balanced diet, regular workout and cutting down on alcohol and smoking.
In case your diet consists of junk food, too much fat and processed sugar, chances are that you’ll end up with some extra weight, which can then lead to hypertension and decreased mobility. And when you add to this the fact that your metabolism only slows down with years, meaning that you gain weight faster and it becomes increasingly more difficult to lose it, you can end up obese if you’re not careful. By exercising regularly, even if it’s just walking about 10,000 steps or more every day, and by eating fresh fruit and vegetables, lean proteins and whole grains, you can improve your chances of avoiding coronary heart disease. It’s also crucial that you visit your doctor for regular checkups. If you discover you have hypertension early enough, you can contain and control it, helping your heart stay healthy for longer.
These are just some of the health problems you might face as you age. The best way to help yourself is to cherish your body and mind and take care of your overall wellbeing throughout life. Finally, if you have any health concerns, be sure to talk to your MD as soon as possible and find out if you have any health problems and how to treat them.