Moving Forward, But Growing Backwards: Senior Healthcare

In today's fast-changing world, we struggle to keep up. We've got bills to pay, mouths to feed, dreams we have yet to achieve but are painstakingly working on, and a myriad of decisive choices to worry about. The collective stress that comes from these things takes a toll not only on our mental health but on our physical body as well. We age with time, that's a no-brainer.

When that happens, we gradually notice that our mind becomes less active, our immune system is more vulnerable to assaults from fatal medical conditions and our bones, the very structure of our physical body, become thinner and weaker as we age. Our lifestyle, which is characterized by our irrational pursuit of momentary indulgence along with the consequences of having to work day-in-and-day-out, plays a vital role in spoiling what's little left of our fading health.

The most vulnerablePerhaps the most susceptible to this onslaught of diseases are our elderly folks, whose waning health can be attributed to their diminishing strength. Most common of these health concerns are arthritis, respiratory diseases, cancer, osteoporosis, diabetes and Alzheimer's disease.

To make matters worse, the fact that senior care did not even make it to the top list of America's most important issues, is a foreboding red flag that elderly welfare has been unjustly left behind. Sure, there are several other problems that need to be addressed but the mounting population of the said demographic is a clear indication that their needs are also growing out of proportion. According to statistics, there were 46.2 million who were 65 and older in the United States as of July 1, 2014. This faction accounted for 14.5 percent of the total population. By 2060, the projected populace of people above 65 would be around 98.2 million. People in this age group would cover nearly one in four Americans by that time. Of this figure, 19.7 million would be above 85 years old.

For every minute that we ignore these realities, someone somewhere else is suffering. That might be your neighbor's grandmother, your schoolmate's elderly uncle, your middle school teacher or the good old chap from across the street who lives alone because his family couldn't care less about his well-being or just doesn't have the time to tend to his needs.

Our unhinged pension benefits do not exactly inspire confidence. Although we do have government programs that administer integrated Medicare and Medicaid assistance and offer medical, social, and long-term care services to the elderly, it still does not give an assurance that holistic care is provided to each and every senior who needs it.

Home health care on the rise

It is comforting to know that independent organizations and compassionate individuals have taken the liberty to establish institutions that care for our ageing people. In-home healthcare infirmaries in areas where people need it the most such as in home healthcare in Houston, Los Angeles and Pittsburgh to name a few, have rapidly flourished throughout the years.

Granting that this might not be enough, it's a pretty great start. People in America today can expect to live longer than ever before with home healthcare just around the corner. You might be wondering how this affects you as much as it affects them but you have to realize that years from now, you will be one of them.

And the quality of care they have will be yours too. Just wait and see.

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