- If someone is choking, it is recommended that the person is assuming a slightly bent-over position or lays down on one side. Fingers should not be placed inside the oesophagus under any circumstance. If the person choking is struggling to breathe, looks pale or has discoloration of the lips, the person should be taken to hospital immediately.
- It is possible to assess the risk level of a patient’s dysphagia using the Dysphagia Severity Rating Scale. It is a potentially life-threatening issue if the risk rating is over 10%.
Women entering old age tend to encounter health issues that gradually creep into their lives. Therefore, if women in this age group can begin to understand more about initial preventative measures, as well as when to seek medical attention, it could help them unload a significant mental burden, or stop them from feeling like they’re in the dark with regard to their health.
This is the biggest threat among mothers who love to eat and have no time to exercise. The symptoms of diabetes remain hidden until the point that a health checkup is carried out and identifies high blood sugar levels in the patient. Furthermore, diabetics generally tend to suffer from various other health disorders as a result of their diabetes, including cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, high blood fat levels and kidney disease. Therefore, if you are obese – particularly around the stomach area – or have a family history of diabetes and suffer from any of the following symptoms, you should make an appointment with your doctor to undergo a detailed diabetes screening assessment to ensure that you receive the appropriate treatment:
- Needing to urinate frequently, especially throughout the night
- Dryness in the throat and feeling thirsty more often than usual
- Experiencing weight loss for no apparent reason
- Feeling exhausted
- Suffering frequent infections of wounds which take a long time to heal
- Blurred vision
- Vaginal itchiness or discharge
- Numbness in the ends of the hands and feet
- Loss of sexual desire
- Eat a healthy, balanced diet consisting of foods from the 5 main food groups consumed in moderation together with a high ratio of vegetables and fruits that are not too sweet. Get your proteins from fish or lean meat, and avoid food high in fat and sugar.
- Exercise for at least 30 minutes per session, 5 days a week as this will help you metabolize food and prevent against diabetes.
- Attend annual health checkups, especially if you have a family history of diabetes.
2. High blood pressure
People are considered to be suffering from high blood pressure when their blood pressure (higher number / lower number) is at 140/90 mm/Hg or more at all times, even when resting.
The latest research has found that even a small increase in blood pressure can have an effect on the risk posed by various cardiovascular and coronary conditions.
Therefore, in cases where a person’s blood pressure is higher than normal, regular blood pressure examinations should then be taken at roughly the same time each day to confirm whether or not that person has high blood pressure throughout their daily lives. If the average of these blood pressure readings is higher than usual, that person should see a doctor to receive treatment. This is because high blood pressure is an often inconspicuous condition that has no apparent signs but it has the potential to have a serious effect on various vital organs, leading to them degenerating continuously until they become severely damaged. Alternatively, some symptoms of high blood pressure may be clear and obvious, such as chest pain due to heart disease, a stroke resulting in paralysis, inflammation of the body or urinating infrequently due to kidney disease. Such symptoms and illnesses are extremely difficult to treat, and recover from adequately.
- Lose weight, especially for those with a higher-than-normal BMI rating (BMI > 25kg/m2).
- Significantly decrease your sodium intake while increasing your consumption of fruits and vegetables.
- Exercise regularly, meaning at least 30 minutes per session, 5 times per week.
- Give up smoking and drinking alcohol.
- Reduce psychosocial stress.
- Seek medical treatment from ear, nose and throat specialists should you suspect that you may be suffering from sleep apnea, in order to accurately diagnose the condition.
If you experience a sudden onset of the following symptoms, you should seek urgent medical attention because they may be the danger signs telling you that a stroke is taking place: weakness in the arms and legs of one side of the body, numbness down one half of the body, a drooping mouth, difficulty swallowing, difficulty speaking or understanding what is being said, blurred vision, difficulty walking properly, struggling to focus, finding it hard to balance and a severe headache, the likes of which you have never felt before. A stroke happens when there is a reduction in blood flow to the brain that leads to brain tissue injury. This can negatively affect brain function or cause permanent brain damage. The potential risk factors that increase the chances of a stroke are as follows:
- Uncontrollable risk factors, namely age, gender and genetics.
- Controllable risk factors, including diabetes, high blood pressure, high blood fat levels, arrhythmia, as well as smoking and regular consumption of alcohol.
- Pay close attention to the regulation of weight and any congenital conditions, such as blood pressure, diabetes and blood fat levels.
- Give up smoking and drinking alcohol.
- Maintain a healthy, balanced diet and reduce your intake of saturated fats while increasing your fiber intake.
- Ensure that you exercise regularly.
- Attend annual health checkups.
Dementia in the elderly occurs as a result of abnormalities affecting numerous brain functions. Its symptoms come and go, but affect the sufferer’s memory function, reasoning capabilities, critical thinking skills and ability to self-regulate.
The most common cause of elderly dementia is Alzheimer’s disease, a condition for which there is currently no cure. Thus, medical treatment focuses on making environmental adjustments for the patient to ensure their safety, as well as helping to prepare relatives or caregivers for the behavioral changes that will affect the patient.
10 dementia warning signs
- Repeatedly asking the same questions time and again as well as losing any memory of recent events or stories, but still being able to recall events of the past.
- Being unable to carry out basic activities correctly, for instance forgetting how to make financial transactions in a bank or forgetting how to drive.
- Having difficulty when doing housework or other previously familiar activities at home or at work.
- Confusing people, days, times and locations.
- Finding it increasingly difficult to make connections between what is seen, and the decisions that should follow. Examples include being unaware of how much time has passed, attempting to place objects on surfaces but letting go before reaching that surface, experiencing difficulty remembering the names of things they’ve seen, getting lost or frequently getting into car accidents.
- Experiencing issues associated with the use of language – whether through speech or writing – including having a tendency to pause when conversing and not knowing what to say next, or constantly repeating words or phrases.
- Putting objects in inappropriate locations or forgetting where they put something altogether, for example putting a pair of shoes in the refrigerator.
- A loss or reduction of their decision making ability, and neglecting to take care of their personal hygiene or their home. For example, when preparing to attend important events, they may be unable to make a decision about what they should wear, neglecting to do their hair and forgetting to shower.
- Withdrawing from work or activities that they previously enjoyed.
- Undergoing emotional and personal changes, such as frequently feeling confused, anxious, afraid or depressed.
- Getting enough rest and sleep
- A daily diet consisting of the 5 main food groups in moderation
- Regular exercise
- Looking at things in a positive light or being optimistic
- Exercising the mind frequently instead of always participating in more convenient activities that may not require any thought
- Not withdrawing from society
- Keeping busy and finding things to do instead of getting bored
- Finding inspiration wherever possible
It is now clear to see that the risk factors behind these 4 common health disorders tend to stem from behavioral aspects, diet, exercise, alcohol consumption, smoking and the accumulation of stress. Thus, the most effective forms of prevention include leading a healthy lifestyle, regulating your weight, ensuring that you exercise regularly, giving up smoking and drinking alcohol, as well as improving your mental wellbeing. Moreover, annual health checkups or checkups at the request of your doctor should be attended in order to ensure a long and healthy life.