In this essay I will explore a range of older person’s needs to include physical, social, emotional, psychological, recreational, environmental and spiritual needs. Physical needs of the older person.
As we age our metabolic rate slows down and our body cells become less efficient. This in turn effects the functioning of the body’s major organs. Our muscles, joints and ligaments all become less supple, resulting in stiffness, loss of ability and agility. Most elderly people complain of some degree of arthritis. How we age depends on our diet, exercise, personal habits and psychosocial factors (Everyday Needs, 2013). The normal signs of aging are nervous system changes, hair thins / baldness, loss of hair pigmentation, loss of hearing (balance can also be affected), eye sight deteriorates, gum disease (taste and smell affected), Dry skin / wrinkled (thinning of fat layer / loss of elasticity), skin fragility (increased incidence of skin tears and ulcers), heart shrinks (fat increases), metabolic rate slows, respiratory system less efficient, gallbladder less effective, constipation due to lax muscle tone in the bowel and lack of mobility, touch less sensitive, extreme of heat/cold/pain, muscle tone loss & reproductive system (hormonal changes)(Everyday Needs, 2013). As well as the above mentioned normal signs of aging the older person can also suffer with physical diseases such as eye problems (cataracts or glaucoma), oral health problems, skin problems (warts, moles, ulcerations, varicose veins, shingles), arthritis in bones and joints, nervous system problems (hypothermia, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease) and dementia (Alzheimer’s disease being the most common form)(Right at home, 2013). Normal age-related changes are often exacerbated by the presence of chronic disease. Chronic disease is sometimes a fact of life with older people and can make it difficult for them to carry out daily activities. This is where the healthcare worker or family...
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