This winter, you should remain vigilant for signs of pneumonia in yourself and loved ones. Wintertime can cause pneumonia to run rampant, since individuals are more often indoors and in close contact with one another. Here at Senior Home Companions (SHC), we are very aware that pneumonia can affect older adults much more severely, so be sure to watch for these signs and treat them appropriately.
Understanding the symptoms of pneumonia in older adults is critical for early detection and treatment. Here’s a more detailed look at the common symptoms, with specific emphasis on how they might present differently in seniors:
It’s important to remember that symptoms can vary widely in intensity and combination. Even mild symptoms in older adults should be taken seriously, as pneumonia can escalate quickly in this age group. Early medical intervention can greatly improve outcomes.
Seniors can be more affected by illness in general because of weakened immune systems. The flu and lung-related conditions are especially more likely to occur in the elderly, which can then develop into pneumonia.
Seniors are also more likely to have diabetes or heart disease, which can increase the risk of pneumonia. Older adults can also sometimes have difficulty producing a strong cough, which will help the body remove harmful germs or bacteria that may cause pneumonia.
Preventing pneumonia in seniors, especially during winter, requires a multifaceted approach:
By incorporating these preventive measures into daily routines, seniors can significantly reduce their risk of developing pneumonia and other winter illnesses.
Get to the doctor as soon as possible if you recognize the signs of pneumonia in yourself or a loved one. Even if you are just experiencing a bad cold or the flu, it is easier to treat symptoms early rather than letting them develop into pneumonia or another serious illness. SHC companions are happy to take your loved ones to doctor appointments if they are unable to drive themselves or need assistance at the appointment.
If you are diagnosed with pneumonia, be sure to get lots of rest and take extra care of yourself. This includes getting a nutritious diet and staying hydrated. Pneumonia is known to recur, so it is extremely important to not rush back into a busy schedule, as well as to finish all prescribed medication. Companion caregivers from SHC can help seniors recover from pneumonia with medication reminders and medical care coordination.
Preventing pneumonia in your family this winter doesn’t have to be a burden. If you need assistance with an elderly parent or family member, contact Senior Home Companions today to discuss our services.