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All "Senior Health & Wellbeing" Articles

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Nutrition That Nourishes the Heart and Mind
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5 Tips for Living Well with Type 2 Diabetes
We've gathered some tips and resources for aging individuals living with type 2 diabetes to help them maintain physical and mental well-being.
The Respiratory System: Age-Related Changes & COPD
The respiratory system, like many of the other human systems (e.g., cardiovascular, digestive), is a wondrously complex and sophisticated arrangement of organs working together to maintain homeostasis.
Finding Your Source of Joy
As we celebrate our third annual National Day of Joy, I took a moment to reflect and consider the true impact joy has on our lives. Science proves that attaining daily doses or joy – big or small – works wonders on our overall wellness, including our physical and mental health.
COVID-19 Vaccine Benefits For Seniors
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Diabetes Prevention and Care
Half of all Americans age 65 or older have pre-diabetes and are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes.
Elderly Home Care and Depression
It is important to recognize depression symptoms when caring for an elderly loved one. While seniors aging in their own home can help them maintain their independence, it can also be isolating.
Pneumonia in Seniors: Prevention and Treatments
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Looking Forward to Fall and Winter - Activities for the Colder Months
As we enter the fall and winter season this year, things look a little different. It’s important for seniors to work with their families, caregivers and health professionals to develop a plan that allows them to safely take part in activities they love and maintain positive mental health through activity and connection.
Living with Arthritis
One in five adults suffer from arthritis, and the majority of these are seniors. For older adults to understand the stages of living with arthritis, it’s helpful to talk about how the disease is identified, diagnosed and managed.

The Respiratory System: Age-Related Changes & COPD

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, more commonly referred to as COPD, is a health problem facing adults in the U.S. Because of its progressive nature and increased age as a leading factor, there is a greater prevalence of COPD in seniors. The good news is that many adults can easily reduce their risk of COPD through lifestyle management.  

COPD represents a group of lung diseases, with the two most common being emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

Symptoms of COPD include

  • Constant coughing
  • Wheezing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Coughing up mucus
  • Tightness in the chest

Research also suggests that there may be a link between poor air quality and COPD. The American Lung Association estimates that between 80-90% of COPD cases result from smoking. Unsurprisingly, secondhand smoke is a significant risk factor as well. 

Seniors should take the following steps to reduce their risk of COPD:

  • Older adults that smoke should get support from a primary care physician and take steps to quit. There are many programs, services, and products that can help.
  • Seniors should avoid contact with secondhand smoke whenever possible.
  • Reducing exposure to air pollution can help relieve symptoms. Many cities issue poor air quality warnings – when these warnings are in effect, seniors should limit outside activities. 
  • Seniors should avoid airborne irritants (chemicals, fumes, etc.) in the home.
  • A healthy diet and exercise plan can improve lung function and overall health with direction from a physician.
  • Older adults should understand the impact of aging on their respiratory system and reduce their risk of any related diseases, illnesses, or conditions.
  • Doctors may recommend getting vaccinations for both influenza and pneumococcal pneumonia to guard against further breathing complications.

Comfort Keepers® Can Help

Comfort Keepers elevates the human spirit for today’s seniors and their families through a unique, individualized approach to care that helps seniors thrive and achieve greater wellbeing by fostering everyday positive moments, connection, and a more purposeful life no matter their age or acuity. As part of a healthcare team, an in-home caregiver can assist with activities that slow disease progression or reduce the risk for those with respiratory issues. Comfort Keepers caregivers can help by supporting physician-recommended health programs, preparing meals, encouraging prescribed physical activity, reminding seniors to take medications, and providing transportation to scheduled appointments. 

Healthline. “Everything You Need to Know About Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).” Web. 2018.
Everyday Health. “5 Best Ways to Prevent COPD” by Chris Iliades, MD. Web. 2018.
Aging Care. “An Overview of COPD” by National Institutes of Health. Web. 2017.
Unity Point Health. “The Top 8 Respiratory Illnesses and Diseases.” Web. 2014.
American Lung Association. “Lung Capacity and Aging.” Web. 2017.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Chronic Respiratory Disease.” Web. 2017. 

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Filed Under:
  • Treatments
  • Vaccines
  • Signs & Symptoms
  • Nutrition
  • Diseases
  • Fitness
  • COPD