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Elderly Issues

| July 2, 2012 | 0 Comments

                                               Written By: Michele Bayno BSW

Are you, or someone you love elderly?  Today, the elderly population face many serious issues. They are sometimes subjected to everything from financial stress to social isolation. Following, I will discuss some of the most important issues that the elderly person may face. This article was written for general information only. If an elderly person is at risk, their doctor should be contacted in order to make a proper assessment of the situation.

Social Isolation

Many elderly persons are isolated. There can be many reasons for this. For example,  their spouse may be deceased or they may be estranged from their family due to distance or conflict. They may have have out lived their friends, or live too far away to visit. The elderly person may have mobility restrictions that keep them confined to their living space. Their health may also be comprised thus contributing to the problem. These are just a few examples of how an elderly person can be isolated.

Over Medication

Today, more and more seniors are over medicated with either prescription or over the counter medication. This can lead to serious health complications, and even death. What can be done about this? An adult child can accompany the elderly person to medical appointments. The adult child can also keep a list of all the medications that the elderly parent is taking. This can help avoid mistakes and over medicating. Another responsible adult who has the elderly persons best interest in mind can also be appointed for this task.

Financial Stress

Today, many elderly face poverty. This may mean not being able to:

- purchase enough food for the month,

- pay utility bills,

- pay rent,

- purchase weather appropriate clothing,

- and pay for their medication.

What can be done to assist an elderly person in this type of situation?

- The elderly person can apply for subsidized housing.

- They can apply for a public long term care facility.

- A qualified social worker can also assist by providing resources.  A qualified social worker is able to assess the situation, and refer the person to the required services and agencies.

Abuse

Abuse towards an elderly person can come in many shapes and forms:

- financial abuse,

- physical abuse,

- emotional and mental abuse,

- sexual abuse,

- and neglect.

If it is believed that an elderly person is abused, the local chapter of the  Elderly Abuse Team can be contacted. The Elder Abuse Team consists of experienced workers who have been trained to work with these issues.

If the elderly person is living in Canada, these links can be used for assistance and information:

http://www.cnpea.ca/

http://www.seniors.gc.ca/c.4nt.2nt3col@.jsp?cid=161

If the elderly person is living in the United States, these links can be used for assistance and information:

http://www.helpguide.org/index.htm

http://www.ncea.aoa.gov/ncearoot/Main_Site/index.aspx

To conclude, these are just a few of the important issues that an elderly person may face today. If you believe that an elderly person is at risk, call their local hospital or community health services. An experienced social worker can help assist with all of these important issues.

“Elderly people face a plethora of difficult issues. If you think that you have what it takes to assist the elderly with these different life changes, consider becoming a social worker with a MSW from Our Lady Lake University Online “.


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