As a person over 65, your health issues are different from when you were younger. And they are probably more complex. Here’s why:
Physical: You’re more likely to have several illnesses, each one impacting the others. In addition, your symptoms may be different at this age.
Mental: As you experience physical changes and decline, you may react emotionally. This is understandable…and common. For example, memory loss can reduce your independence, and that can make you depressed. Other losses that come with age—loss of a spouse, friends, or financial security—can also affect your mental health.
“Sometimes a little change can make a big difference in an older person’s life. At Beth Israel Senior Health, we look for anything that can benefit someone’s life. This could be changing a medication that’s having minor adverse side effects. I’ve seen this one change make life a lot better for a patient.”
– Monte Peterson, MD, Medical Director, Senior Health
Medication management: As a senior, you respond differently to medications. (For example, because of changes in your kidneys, you actually process medication differently.) What’s more, you’re probably taking several medications. When taken together, certain drugs cause side effects or harmful interactions.
Preventive medicine: There are many steps you can take to ward off illness—or to slow down a disease you already have. The reward for seniors is tremendous: Acting now to prevent disease helps you stay active and independent as you get older. It's never too late to improve your health!
Taking charge of your future: If you haven’t already done so, now is the time for you to make decisions about your future medical care, based on your values. It’s important to write these down, and to appoint a trusted person to carry out your wishes.
All these aspects of an older person's health are connected. That is why the geriatrics doctors, nurse practitioners and social workers at the Beth Israel Senior Health Program focus on all the many pieces of your wellness when we provide care.
Our patients can reach a doctor after 5 pm or on the weekends by calling