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GCU Aging Care Considerations Discussion

GCU Aging Care Considerations Discussion


Answer to this post:

The aging process is a complex and gradual biological phenomenon that occurs as living organisms grow older. It is influenced by a combination of genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors. there are several key characteristics associated with the aging process such as 

Metabolic Changes: aging is associated with changes in metabolism, including a gradual decline in metabolic rate.

Loss of Muscle Mass and Bone Density: As people age, there is often a loss of muscle mass and bone density, a condition known as sarcopenia and osteoporosis, respectively. (Spirgiene & Brent,2018 )

Hormone production and regulation change: As a person ages for instance, menopause in women and andropause (age-related decline in testosterone) in men are examples of hormonal shifts that come with aging. Also, Aging often brings changes to the nervous system, leading to a gradual decline in cognitive functions such as memory, attention, and processing speed. 

Memory issues, such as those associated with dementia, can contribute to elder abuse in several ways. Like dependence on caregivers, older adults with memory issues may become highly dependent on caregivers for their basic needs, medication management, financial decisions, and personal care. This dependence can create a power imbalance between the older adult and the caregiver, potentially leading to situations where the caregiver abuses their position of trust. Also, inability to recall abuse: Memory problems can make it difficult for older adults to recall instances of abuse or neglect. They might not remember the abusive incidents, the people involved, or even that they reported abuse in the past. This makes it easier for abusers to deny their actions.

Here are some key considerations for nurses when conducting health assessments on geriatric patients, as compared to middle-aged adults:

Physical Changes and Mobility:

Geriatric patients experience reduced joint flexibility and bone density. Nurses should be mindful of their limited mobility and may need to modify assessment techniques to accommodate physical limitations. So care should be taken to prevent falls or injuries during assessments, as geriatric patients are more susceptible to fractures. Compare to Middle-Aged Adult who generally, muscle mass and bone density are relatively stable. Physical examination might focus more on identifying early signs of chronic conditions like hypertension, diabetes, or cardiovascular disease. (Tosato et al., 2019)

Cognitive Function:

Geriatric patients may have varying levels of cognitive impairment, including dementia or memory issues. Nurses should tailor their communication techniques and questions accordingly, Compare to adult for aging patient more time might be needed to allow the patient to process and respond to questions.(Tosato et al., 2019)

Medication Management:

Geriatric patients often take multiple medications, which can lead to drug interactions or adverse effects. Nurses should thoroughly review the patient’s medication list and ask about any changes or concerns.(Tosato et al., 2019)

References : 

Tosato, M., Zamboni, V., Ferrini, A., & Cesari, M. (2019). The aging process and potential interventions to extend life expectancy. Clinical interventions in aging, 2(3), 401.

Spirgiene L, Brent L. ( 2018 ).Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment from a Nursing Perspective editors. Fragility Fracture Nursing: Holistic Care and Management of the Orthogeriatric Patient  Available from: doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-76681-2_4

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