The joy of ageing

While we all age in different ways, the best way to counter the negative effects of ageing is to take care of yourself and remain active. One of the keys to enjoying life into old age is to keep challenging yourself mentally.

No-one wants to be a burden on friends and family in old age. Rather than being stuck in a situation that limits what you can do, it’s far better to take some positive action now. A healthy lifestyle, regular exercise and a balanced diet are all simple measures that anyone can undertake.

And it’s not all about self-denial. If you’re a little overweight, you can still have a nice meal or a glass of wine. Just remember to embrace your guilty pleasures in moderation. It’s also important to balance a sedentary lifestyle with enough activity to stay healthy.

How a positive attitude helps with ageing

A positive attitude is also of great benefit as we age. A life that is centred round the negative statements, such as ‘I can’t’ and ‘I shall not’, all too readily leads to depression and unhappiness.

There is no denying that as people get older, they start to have more aches, pains and complaints. However, not all complaints are simply caused by old age and they shouldn’t just be ignored. Sometimes these complaints are signs of something else entirely.

For example, everybody says, “As I’ve become older, my joints have started to ache.” While that could certainly be just a by-product of old age, it could also be a condition that is easily resolved. Often older people are living with pain or discomfort for no reason. As you age, it’s important to listen to your body and have regular health checks with a medical professional.

Conditions associated with ageing

We can offer treatment for most conditions that are associated with ageing. We also refer patients to a trusted team of specialists. A patient experiencing deteriorating eyesight may require cataract removal or simply a trip to the optometrist for glasses. Specialists can assess any loss of hearing and help with a hearing aid. In fact, there are many other aids for all kinds of different conditions that can be of great assistance for older people.

The loss of mental ability is most people’s worst fear. However there are many options for those who experience a decline in cognition. Early signs include patients starting to forget things or having trouble looking after themselves on a day-to-day basis. Simple actions such as dressing or cooking can become more difficult.

We can refer these patients to care institutes that can help with cooking, cleaning, medications and transport. We can also refer carers or partners of the patient to different peer group sessions. These can help with understanding what’s going on and how to help. If we suspect that a patient has dementia, we can organise a formal investigation to get a diagnosis one way or the other.

Ageing shouldn’t be scary

Ageing should not be scary. It’s a natural part of the life cycle. Your doctor has plenty of ways to ensure you continue to lead an engaged and fulfilling life as you grow older.

Normal ageing is happy ageing.