Despite the importance of seeing a doctor each year, the National Center for Health Statistics finds approximately 2 out of 10 people have not seen a doctor within the past 12 months. Additionally, the 2013 medical statistics find only 8% of them were for a yearly medical exam.
There are seven health issues your parent should be screened for. Bring these health issues up with your parent and make sure he or she has undergone screenings. If not, schedule an appointment with your parent’s primary care physician.
While Alzheimer’s is now more prevalent than breast cancer in women, your mom still needs to undergo a yearly mammogram. Early detection is key to beating the disease. In men, a prostate cancer screening is vital.
Both genders should undergo a screening for colon cancer every 5 to 10 years, depending on the type of screening performed. Another important test for both genders is a mole check to look for skin cancer.
The American Diabetes Association states 86 million people in the U.S. have pre-diabetes. If measures are taken early, it is possible to keep pre-diabetes from becoming diabetes. Each year, your mom or dad’s doctor should do a blood test to check glucose levels.
High Blood Pressure
Regular screenings of blood pressure are important as your parent ages. High blood pressure is linked to having a higher risk of having a stroke or heart disease. This is something you can track at your parents home by purchasing a blood pressure monitor and making sure your parent sees his or her doctor yearly.
Cholesterol levels impact health in many ways. Among the many risks the elderly face are heart disease and stroke. A yearly cholesterol test helps determine both the HDL and LDL levels. If high cholesterol levels are found, there are prescription medications and diets that can help lower them.
Bone loss is another problem with aging. A yearly screening for osteoporosis is important to determine if bone loss is occurring. If it is, there are prescription medications that help strengthen bones to prevent against breaks and fractures.
Glaucoma is one of the more common vision problems elderly men and women face. Macular degeneration is another screening your aging mom or dad needs to undergo. Plus, it’s important to keep track of vision changes as poor eyesight does contribute to an elderly person’s risk of falling.
If getting your parent to and from a doctor’s appointment is a challenge, call a home care agency. One of the many services is transportation to and from stores, businesses, and medical practices.
If you or an aging loved one are considering home care in Cary, NC or the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at HomeChoice Home Care Services. Call today (919) 858-6034
He is an avid mountain biker, golfer and a fan of the Boston Red Sox and the University of Connecticut Huskies. Brian resides in Apex, NC with his wife, Jennifer and their two children.
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