Does taking several pills a day affect the health of older adults?

Lleida, 65, took more than five pills before each meal. One for hypertension, two for the heart, one for cholesterol, a blood thinner, one for diabetes, and one for dizziness.

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Although drugs have contributed to improving the health and quality of life of older adults, the simultaneous consumption of many pills, or also called polypharmacy, has caused different problems, such as an increase in adverse reactions, a reduction in the effectiveness of the product. and increased total cost (more money is spent).

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“There are older adults who must take more than five medications a day, as they need to alleviate different ailments. To avoid a negative interaction when consuming them, it is important and necessary that each drug has been prescribed and evaluated by the doctor. For example, today the excessive use of anti-inflammatories has become common without knowing that they can cause digestive bleeding, gastritis and kidney damage “, points out Jorge Luis Solari, geriatrician at the Ricardo Palma Clinic.

GOOD ADVICES

The specialist recommends the following:

♦ They always consume medicines prescribed by the doctor and respect the treatment time (days, weeks, months) and the schedule of intake (morning, afternoon, evening, after lunch, fasting, before bedtime).

♦ They can include vitamin supplements in their diet, but without exaggeration. It is advisable to eat a healthy diet, exercise in moderation and smile at life.

♦ When you go for a consultation, you should tell the doctor which pills you take so that they take it into account when prescribing new medications.

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Health: Exercises for older adults to have a healthier life

One of the biggest effects of aging is the loss of muscle and strength. Old people who do physical exercise retain their motor and cognitive abilities.

Take care of your Health. Being at home does not mean that we should neglect the physical or emotional health of our older adults. While the pandemic has limited many of the resources people had to de-stress, distract themselves, or maintain a more active life, the options we have at home are many.

“Maintaining an active physical life will allow our older adults to continue performing different tasks on a day-to-day basis. Performing exercises that they enjoy will also help them continue to maintain their independence when doing other things, ”said Dr. Giovanna Valdespino, head of Preventive Programs at Sanitas.

Before starting remember to wear comfortable clothes, sports shoes and not eat food an hour before the practice. Depending on the capacity that each person has, determine the intensity of the routine. Do not forget that it is important that you comply with these types of exercises:

• Stretching exercises: This type of exercise should be done before and after any physical activity to avoid injury and increase flexibility. You can start by slowly moving your neck and shoulders to the sides, back and forth in sets of ten reps for each movement. Then include movements for elbows, wrists, knees, ankles, and feet. This can be done standing up, or you can remain seated in a chair with your feet flat on the floor, your legs slightly apart, and your back straight.

• Aerobic or resistance activities: walking, dancing, or using machines you have at home like the stationary bike or the treadmill. These activities allow you to maintain cardiovascular health, strengthen bones and physical endurance.

• Strengthening exercises: in this way, the loss of muscle mass typical of age is reduced. You can use sports tools such as weights and dumbbells, or household items that generate a weight according to your physical capacity (water bottles, bags of rice, etc.).

FOR PHYSICAL HEALTH

• Walk, march, or jog around the house.

• Squats with support on the wall.

• Arm push-ups with support from the wall.

• Leg curls.

• Raise your arms up and forward, at shoulder height.

• Calf extension with wall support.

• Raise the arms to the sides of the body, at the height of the shoulders.

• Elevate the heel.

• Contract the abdomen and pelvic area.

FOR MENTAL HEALTH

• Close your eyes and spend two minutes feeling everything around you (sounds, smells, temperature, light).

• Listen to a relaxing song.

• Take five minutes to say thank you.

• Read.

• Draw, paint, embroider.

• Look in the mirror and smile.

• A self-massage.

• Contemplate the sky or the landscape.

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