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Senior Health: Understanding Pneumonia

During the winter months, pneumonia risk is at its peak. Providers of home care in Sacramento, CA, want families to understand the illness and how they can protect their loved ones. Pneumonia is an infection of the lungs that inflames air sacs and causes them to fill with fluid. This infection can be caused by a variety of bacteria and viruses and leads to inflammation from fluid buildup, which lowers oxygen levels in the blood. A senior’s body will attempt to prioritize blood flow to organs, which will restrict blood flow to other vital areas of the body and causes other health issues. Since elderly people are often susceptible to infection, they are more likely to get pneumonia than younger people and the side effects are typically more severe. When seniors get pneumonia, they may end up with kidney failure, pleurisy, lung abscesses, or bloodstream infections.

What Are the Signs of Pneumonia?

Older people don’t often exhibit the same symptoms of pneumonia that younger people do. Seniors are less likely to have a fever or cough up mucus and their symptoms are generally milder. Instead of seeming ill, they may just feel tired, weak, nauseous, and dizzy. As pneumonia progresses, seniors will often experience confusion and dementia-like symptoms. If a senior has other health issues such as heart disease or receives Sacramento Alzheimer’s home care, pneumonia will likely make it worse.

How Do I Protect My Loved One from Pneumonia?

It’s harder for seniors to recover from pneumonia, so it is important to seek immediate medical help if you suspect your elderly loved one has pneumonia. Treating pneumonia relies on handling the cause of the infection and managing its symptoms. Since pneumonia is so dangerous for seniors, protecting your loved one from pneumonia is important. In addition to proper hygiene, vaccinations can provide some protection for your senior loved one.

If your senior loved one exhibits signs of pneumonia, he or she will need a diagnosis from a medical professional to properly treat it. While caring for a sick senior loved one can be challenging, there are resources available to help manage the illness and its symptoms. Home Care Assistance provides numerous services for seniors including Alzheimer’s, dementia, post-stroke, and Sacramento Parkinson’s home care. We offer medication reminders, personal care assistance, transportation to doctor’s appointments, and more to help sick seniors manager daily tasks in the comfort of home. To schedule your free consultation, call a compassionate Care Manager at 916.706.0169 today.