Many older adults experience sudden weight loss as they age, which is not always a healthy thing. Instead, it could indicate a major health issue that we should be concerned about. For older adults, it can be problematic if they lose more than five percent of body weight in a month or ten percent in six months. In this article, find out about the causes and risks of sudden weight loss in seniors.
Causes of Sudden Weight Loss
Depression and social isolation can be another reason for the drop in weight. As people age, more time is spent alone at home. This causes their social circle to shrink and some of their close associates pass on. Prolonged isolation, as well as medicine for any chronic illnesses they may have, may exacerbate depression. It is common for people suffering from depression to lose their appetite, resulting in weight loss. Fortunately, there are therapy sessions and other options for dealing with the increasing onset of depression.
Weight loss is often the first indicator of cancer in an older adult. Hence, it would be best to confirm the diagnosis as soon as possible. Some of the most common cancers experienced by older adults include lung, colon, stomach, prostate, and breast. These cancers should be tested for in your loved one on a frequent basis. Consult with their doctor to ensure that they go for their regular screening appointments.
Sometimes, the cause might be as simple as being unable to feed oneself. It is likely they might no longer have the strength to make their own meals and use appliances around the house. This typically means that assisted living might be the best solution for them. You could also consider doing their groceries and preparing meals for them that are high in nutritional value, easy to store and reheat when they are hungry.
Although the causes may sometimes not be discovered, it can be an underlying medical issue that you should not disregard.
Risks of Sudden Weight Loss
Some of the implications of abrupt weight loss in older adults might be the loss of interest and capacity to do daily tasks such as grooming, bathing, and dressing. There might also be more likelihood of injuries, falls, mood swings, as well as fatigue. There would be an increased demand for care facilities such as assisted living communities.
Significance of Tracking Weight
Early detection and intervention are important to any older adult’s health. You can proactively seek out the signs by being aware of your loved one’s habits and weight. Noticing the changes in their lifestyle and bringing them for the proper examination can help to uncover the potential causes.
It can be challenging to handle all of these obligations on your own at times. There are senior living communities like Rittenhouse Village At Valparaiso, that track their residents’ weight on a regular basis to ensure that they are healthy. You might want to think about relocating your loved one to a community that prioritizes their residents’ needs and collaborates with their family members to ensure that their needs are satisfied.