What Are Some Common Sources of Persistent Pain in Elderly People?

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Anyone can experience chronic pain, but for seniors, chronic pain often comes from both aging and diseases such as diabetes. Chronic pain can be physically debilitating and limit mobility. Seniors with chronic pain may also be susceptible to taking too many pain medications, which can lead to addiction. Knowing what causes chronic pain can help seniors find ways to address their pain.

Inflammation

Old injuries, the foods seniors eat, and stress on the joints can all trigger inflammatory responses that cause intense chronic pain. Inflammation in the joints is known as arthritis. Gout, a form of arthritis that happens when uric acid crystals build up in the joints, can cause excruciating joint pain. During gout flare-ups, seniors may experience swelling and redness in affected areas.

There are a variety of age-related health conditions that can make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face can be easier to address if their families opt for professional elder care. Huntington families can rely on expertly trained caregivers to keep their loved ones safe and comfortable while aging in place.

Weak Muscles

Limited physical activity can lead to deconditioning in the muscles. As a result, when a senior uses weak muscles, he or she may experience pain. Lifting an item may cause discomfort in the arms. When attempting to walk long distances, a senior who is mostly sedentary may endure leg cramps and pain due to weak muscles.

Diabetes or Poor Circulation

Seniors with poorly controlled diabetes are at increased risk for neuropathy. When blood sugar is consistently high, it can damage the nerves. People with diabetic neuropathy usually experience the effects in their legs and feet. However, the condition may affect any part of the body. Individuals with neuropathy may complain of aching, burning, and sharp pain, and when the feet are involved, walking can be a challenge.

Aging adults who experience chronic pain can benefit significantly from having professional caregivers help with everyday tasks. Huntington respite care professionals can assist seniors with a wide array of daily tasks, offering family caregivers the chance to focus on other personal responsibilities or take a break to prevent burnout. Whether it’s for a few hours a day or a few days a week, respite care is the perfect solution for family caregivers who are feeling overwhelmed.

Injuries

Older adults are often at risk for falls due to problems with balance. Weak bones can make seniors more susceptible to breaks and fractures. When a bone is healing, scars can form in soft tissue around the injured bone, causing the area to become inflamed. As a result, chronic inflammation can develop and cause pain. When a senior has a hip or knee replacement and doesn’t follow up with physical therapy, he or she may also experience chronic pain and limited range of motion.

Obesity

Excess weight puts a load on the bones and joints, which may cause discomfort during movement. Being overweight also makes the heart work harder. Everyday activities such as walking may cause some overweight seniors to have chest pain and difficulty breathing. An individual may find it hard to walk without feeling pain in the legs. Seniors who are obese may not be active on a regular basis. As a result, when they engage in activities such as lifting heavy packages or moving furniture, they may encounter back pain because of overexertion. 

Home care service agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Home Care Assistance, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. We offer a revolutionary program called the Balanced Care Method, which encourages seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy. Schedule a free in-home consultation by giving us a call today at (304) 521-2909.