Substance Abuse Among Elderly
Drug abusers aged 65 and above are prone to more risks and it may be surprising but addiction is common even at this age.
It was found that substance abuse among elderly in the United States is increasing at an unprecedented rate. According to the Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services, drug misuse within older citizens can be grouped into two general types the "hardy survivor," or those who have been misusing drugs for several years and have attained 65, and the "late onset" squad, which is those who develop dependence at a later stage in life. Irrespective of what age you are or when your dependence commenced, there are healing alternatives present to assist you assume a healthy life.
Undercalculation and under diagnosis of addiction among people 65 and up can limit them from receiving the support they require.
Factors Of Abuse Among Senior Citizens
Drug abuse occurring late in life can be attributed to few probable causes. These could be health problems or life-altering occurrences which lead to a psychological burden.
Drug-abusing behaviour that can cause a full-scale addiction may be triggered by these events. Pick up the phone and talk to us on 0800 246 1509 if you or a loved one is battling substance abuse.
Possible inducers of substance or alcohol dependence in the older individuals are
- The passing of someone they hold dearly.
- Financial Issues
- Relocation or transferring to a nursing home
- Family conflict
- Health deterioration (depression, memory loss, major surgeries, etc.)
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The Risks Of Senior Citizens Drug Misuse
Since senior citizens are increasingly prone to the degrading effects of these substances, drug or alcohol abuse among the elderly is specifically harmful.
Some of the most dangerous prescription drugs for seniors are Benzodiazepines which are used to treat pain, anxiety or insomnia. Despite its addicting potency, it is commonly prescribed by doctors to older people. Every year the rate of senior citizens addicted to benzos increases.
People above the age of 65 have a diminished capability to metabolize substances or alcohol together with a heightened brain sensitivity to them. That means that even those senior citizens that aren't addicted are exposing themselves to increased risk if they use drugs or alcohol.
Difficulties In Distinguishing Dependence In Senior Citizens
Some of the psychological or physical health issues, like dementia, depression or diabetes might actually have similar side effects to substance abuse.
There are cases where doctors attribute the deteriorating mental and physical condition to old age.
Signs Of Addiction In Senior Citizens
The mental health, physical health and personal relationships of people may start to deteriorate as they get older. Even though addiction can be hard to identify in this demographic, it's essential to give attention to any unusual signs your elderly loved one exhibits.
Some signs of elderly drug abuse to look for include
- Memory loss
- Changes in sleeping habits
- Undetermined bruises
- Irritability, sadness, depression
- Unidentified chronic pain
- Eating disorder
- Prefers to be alone often
- Lack of personal hygiene
- Getting out of contact with family and friends
- Losing interest in regular activities
It is critical to find out a treatment centre that has specific experience working with seniors facing addiction once an addiction is identified.
You should identify plans that particularize in this form of dependence and as well provide case management services, as people above 65 usually lack the social help highly needed during recuperating. Access to medical, social and psychiatric resources that can help seniors keep up their healthy habits once they leave treatment will be secured by using these case management services.
Senior Citizen Addiction Statistics
Family, medical practitioners, and caregivers are encouraged to be keen to the rising cases of elderly substance abuse and report them immediately.