Older Citizens And Dependence Abuse
Although it's not unpopular for an addiction later in life, the health effects of substance abuse for those over the age of 65 can be even more dangerous than in younger users.
It was found that substance abuse among elderly in the United States is increasing at an unprecedented rate. The Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services classifies elderly addicts into hardy survivors (continuous substance abuse starting from younger years) and late onset (those who developed the habit during senior years). There are treatment choices available to help you get back on a healthy track, it doesn't matter what your age is or when addiction began.
Dependence within individuals of 65 and over is normally underestimated and under-diagnosed, which can actually avoid them from receiving the assistance they urgently require.
Causes Of Addiction In Senior Citizens
Many things could lead to someone turning to substance abuse later in life. Some of them may have dealt with desperate situations or are suffering hopelessness due to sickness.
Drug-abusing behaviour may be provoked by these events that can result in a full-scale addiction. Pick up the phone and talk to us on 0800 246 1509 if you or a loved one is battling substance abuse.
Here are some of the probable reasons why elderly are resorting to substance abuse
- The passing of someone they hold dearly.
- Financial strains or loss of income
- Relocation or transferring to a nursing home
- Trouble sleeping
- Family conflict
- Mental or physical health decline (depression, amnesia, life-threatening operations, etc.)
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The Risk Of Elderly Substance Abuse
Senior citizens are more susceptible to the deteriorating effects of drug and alcohol, therefore, these substances are particularly dangerous among the elderly.
Benzodiazepines are probably the most hazardous prescription substances for elderly, even though they are generally used to treat pain, anxiety and sleeping issues. They are extremely addictive and easily prescribed. Benzodiazepine addiction of elderly is found to have grown each year.
At 65 our body has diminished its ability to break down drugs and alcohol which contributes to increased susceptibility to their effects. Even when the person is not addicted, it becomes harmful for seniors to use drugs or alcohol totally.
Challenges In Identifying Addiction Of Senior Citizens
The effects or symptoms manifested by elderly abusers could be mistaken with symptoms of dementia, diabetes and other health issues suffered by older people.
That is why "being old" is often a primary diagnosis for most psychological or physical health issues senior citizens receive at the doctor's.
Signs Of Addiction In Senior Citizens
There is a decline in their mental health, physical health and personal relationships as people get older. Even though dependence can be troublesome to identify in this demographic, it's really vital to take note to any strange symptoms your aging loved one shows.
Drug usage in the elderly can sow itself in signs including
- Memory troubles
- Erratic sleeping habits
- Bruising without known reason
- Feeling irritable, sad and depressed
- Undetermined chronic pain
- Changes in eating habits
- Preference to solitude
- Undesirable hygiene
- Losing contact with loved ones
- Lack of interest in normal activities
It is important to look for a rehab facility when you recognize an addiction, especially one with a particular expertise with addiction among elderly.
Since individuals over 65 particularly are devoid of the social support needed throughout recovery, so you should search for programs that specialize in this kind of addiction and also provide case management services. Approach to medical, psychiatric and social resources to permit for a healthy lifestyle to continue after treatment is offered to the seniors by these case management services.
Senior Citizen Addiction Statistics
The reason for concern and something that should not be ignored by medical professionals, caretakers or family members, is the alarming rate at which individuals 65 years and older are developing addictions to various substances.