Seniors may slow their activity to the point where they no longer engage in physical activity. Living a sedentary lifestyle poses many different health risks. Seniors who remain sedentary for extended periods throughout the day are at a greater risk of developing the following health conditions.
Sedentary behavior often leads to an increase in blood pressure, as blood vessels gradually lose their elasticity. A loss of physical activity also contributes to increases in LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, which contribute to blockages in blood vessels.
When blood circulation slows, the risk of developing blood clots also increases. Physicians from the London School of Medicine and Dentistry explain that by sitting still for 90 minutes, seniors decrease the blood flow in their legs by up to 40 percent, which increases the risk of developing deep vein thrombosis. Clots may eventually break loose and cause pulmonary emergencies, heart attacks, or strokes. Valves in the lower legs become sluggish. The lymphatic system does not circulate fluid as efficiently, which results in edema. The heart also loses the ability to pump blood effectively as the muscle weakens.
Decrease in muscle strength often indicates the onset of serious health issues. If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a home care provider Fort Worth, Texas, families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.
A lack of physical activity has also been associated with an increased risk of developing breast, colon, and endometrial cancers. Sitting for extended lengths of time often causes weight gain and a greater chance of developing systemic inflammation while interfering with the body’s natural immune system. The body does not eliminate free radicals and toxins as effectively, which increases the risk of developing malignancies.
When muscles are not used regularly, they lose mass and strength. Seniors find it more difficult to accomplish normal tasks due to a lack of energy, flexibility, and overall endurance. Older adults become more unsteady on their feet, which leads to a greater risk of falling. A lack of weight-bearing activity also weakens bones by decreasing mineral density. Thus, the risk of a spontaneous hip or spine fracture becomes greater when merely bearing weight.
Type 2 Diabetes
By not keeping busy, older adults commonly tend to snack more frequently on unhealthy foods. Taking in more calories than what the body burns leads to obesity. As the body does not require as much fuel to function when sedentary, blood sugar levels rise. Cells also become less sensitive to insulin. The combination of excess blood sugar, excess weight, and increased blood pressure may lead to the development of diabetes.
Living with a serious health condition can make it challenging for seniors to age in place. However, they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional live-in care. Fort Worth seniors can benefit from assistance with meal prep, bathing, transportation to the doctor’s office, medication reminders, and much more.
The brain requires a certain amount of oxygen and nutrients to function properly. When blood flow slows, neurons become deprived of oxygen and nutrients. Communication between neurons may slow or signals may form improperly, which affects the thinking process. Complaints of anxiety, depression, and other disorders have also been linked to being sedentary, as inactive adults also typically do not socialize.
Hiring a professional caregiver is one of the best ways to help your loved lead a happy, active, and fulfilling life. In Fort Worth, Texas, home care 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. To hire a professional in-home care expert for your loved one, call us at (817) 349-7599 today.