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Ways for Your Aging Loved One to Handle Persistent Pain

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Pain management can be challenging for seniors. They often have multiple health conditions and take various prescription medications that can have side effects. After a comprehensive examination, your aging loved one’s physician will develop a treatment plan that may include the following interventions to address chronic pain.

Correct Nutritional Deficiencies

As people age, they may lose their appetites as a result of taste and smell alterations, medication side effects, neurological problems, or depression. Appetite loss may result in nutritional deficiencies, which can cause joint and muscle pain. If your loved one is deficient in vitamin C, vitamin D, magnesium, or vitamin B12, he or she may develop increased arthritis pain and joint inflammation. The physician can evaluate your loved one’s nutritional status with a physical examination and blood tests. Nutritional shakes and vitamin and mineral supplements can correct deficiencies, which may alleviate chronic pain. Aging in place can present a few unique challenges for older adults. Some only require part-time assistance with exercise or meal preparation, while others are living with serious illnesses and benefit more significantly from receiving live-in care. Arlington, TX, Home Care Assistance are leaders in the elderly in-home care industry for good reason. We tailor our care plans based on each senior’s individual needs, our caregivers continue to receive updated training in senior care as new developments arise, and we also offer comprehensive care for seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s.

Use NSAIDs

Chronic pain in the elderly is often caused by osteoarthritis. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are very effective at relieving pain and joint inflammation. They’re typically well tolerated and are easily accessible. If your loved one takes prescription anticoagulant medications to reduce heart attack and stroke risk, talk to the doctor before your parent starts taking NSAIDs. If taken with anticoagulant medications, NSAIDs such as ibuprofen and naproxen can increase the risk of abnormal bleeding.

Assess for Depression

Depression can increase the perception of pain. Monitor your loved one for crying episodes, appetite and sleep changes, social isolation, and loss of interest in maintaining hygiene. If you notice any of these signs, encourage your loved one to express his or her feelings. If your loved one reveals he or she has been feeling depressed, make an appointment with the physician. If needed, the doctor will refer your loved one to a mental health professional for additional evaluation and treatment. Once depression has been treated, the chronic pain may subside. Make sure your loved one gets daily exercise, which can also stave off depression and anxiety. Daily exercise may also relieve pain, stiffness, balance problems, and muscle weakness.  A professional caregiver can help your loved one exercise in safety and comfort. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of in-home care. Arlington families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia.

Consider Chiropractic Care

If your loved one is unable to take NSAIDs because of digestive problems or cannot tolerate the side effects of prescription pain medications, consider chiropractic care to address chronic pain. Chiropractors can help aging adults handle their pain through therapeutic massage and spinal adjustments. A chiropractic massage can ease muscle soreness and promote optimal circulation to painful areas of the body. Massage and spinal adjustments can also promote sleep. Chronic pain is one of the most common reasons for insomnia in aging adults. It’s important that seniors get enough high-quality sleep because it prevents daytime sleepiness, reduces the risk of anxiety and depression, and lessens systemic inflammation that’s often associated with chronic pain.  A compassionate home caregiver can be a tremendous source of support for a senior living with chronic pain. Home care professionals can be a wonderful boon to seniors. Whether they require around-the-clock supervision or just need assistance with exercise and household tasks a few days a week, seniors can enjoy a higher quality of life with the help of trusted in-home caregivers. Home Care Assistance can be your trusted partner when your loved one needs help with the challenges of aging. Call us today at (817) 591-1580 to learn about our high-quality in-home care services.

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