Polypharmacy in the Older Adult: Too Much of a Good Thing Elderly patients that take several medications compound the risk of developing an adverse drug reaction. Not only does the aging process have an effect on how elderly bodies process medication, but elderly people take more medications than their younger counterparts. According to Conry (2005), the elderly patient takes an average of 5 prescription medications and two non-prescription medications (Conry, 2005). While medications are frequently necessary to enhance the quality of life of the elderly, non-pharmacologic methods should be used whenever possible. Healthcare providers need to understand how aging impacts the body’s response to medications, which drugs pose more risk to elderly patients, how to recognize drug related problems, and most importantly how to prevent adverse events.
Health promotion international, Vol.26 No.SI Ayalon, L., Fialova, D., Arean, P.A. et al. (2010). Challenges associated with the recognition and treatment of depression in older recipients of home care services. International Psychogeriatric, 22:4, 514-522 Duckworth.
October 6, 1999. V282i13. P1215. Jackson, Rupert & Bob Baldwin. "Detecting Depression in Elderly Mentally Ill Patients: The Use of Geriatric Depression Scale Compared with Medical and Nursing Observations.
Substance Abuse in Older Populations The issue of substance misuse and abuse among the elderly population is complex. The elderly rarely use alcohol or drugs to get high. Drug or alcohol use that begins after age 60 appears fundamentally different (Culberson & Ziska 2008). The elderly turn to alcohol and drugs to alleviate the physical and psychological pain from the onslaught of medical and psychiatric illness, the loss of loved ones or social isolation (Culberson & Ziska 2008). Elderly patients have a combination of and functional and social habits that support substance use.
alcohol Substance abuse and addiction are major problems in society today. Every segment of society, regardless of race, gender, or age is affected. Some of the substances that are used grow naturally, where as others are manufactured illicitly or even legitimately in laboratories. They may be smoked, inhaled, ingested, or injected and used for social, religious, or self-medicating purposes. The substance that are abused include caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, steroids, stimulants, depressants, heroin, ANd cocaine.
Alzheimer's Disease Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) is a progressive degenerative disease of unknown aetiology, as first described by Alois Alzheimer (1907). According to Shoenberg et. al (1987), it is the commonest cause of dementia in the elderly with an incidence ranging from 2.5 to 5 per thousand. Furthermore, this incidence has grown in recent years as a result people generally living longer. The disease is incurable at present but there are drug treatments that delay the symptoms in the early stages.
Washington, D.C: National Academies Press, 2003. 238-240. • Hudson, M. F. and J. R. Carlson. "Elder abuse: Expert and public perspectives on its meaning." Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect 9.4 (1998): 77-97.
Going teetotal can reduce the risk of dementia by creating a cleaner brain en... ... middle of paper ... ...an lead to brain deteriorating diseases during elderly years. The middle ages of one’s life are when many become less active and more dependent on substances, such as alcohol and nicotine. Not only are middle aged people at a higher risk to use tobacco products, more than many other age groups. These lifestyle choices increase the risk of reduction of brain size and blood circulation in the brain. These choices may seem somewhat harmless, but they are quite the opposite.
The literature described verbal abuse as being the most common type reported, however physical abuse was also reported but was rarer (Gibbs, &Mosqueda, 2010). Elderly individuals with dementia are more prone to abuse and incidences often go unreported or hidden (Greenlee, 2012). It is alarming that the rates of elder abuse in dementia patients are so high, and in a rapidly aging population that can only mean that numbers will increase (Greenlee, 2012). Elderly dementia patients are a highly vulnerable population, within an already vulnerable group.sourceThe feelings and emotions of the dementia patient might be ignored or overlooked due their cognitive impairments and the societal attitude that they are incapable of making rational decisions or may exaggerate situations. Source Elderly patients with dementia may have difficulty communicating, such as finding the words or social withdrawal, and may find it difficult to talk about their experiences of abuse.
Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, v.72, i4, pg. 681(8) Nemeroff, Charles B., et. el. (2003) Differential Responses to Psychotherapy versus pharmacotherapy in Patients with Chronic Forms of Major Depression. National Academy of Sciences, v100, i24, pg.142(4) Rogers, Carl R., On Becoming a Person.