Recovering after an injury is often a very long and time-consuming process, which is particularly true for adults ages 65+. It can often take months until they fully recover, but there are ways to speed up this process and recover a bit faster. Here is everything you need to know about seniors recovering from injury!
Why Seniors Experience Delayed Healing
When it comes to recovery after an injury, it’s far more complicated in the elderly than in younger adults. Even though it sounds a bit discouraging, the truth is that it’s a completely natural thing that occurs simply because our bodies change as we get older. However, it’s important to know that even the simplest falls, such as slipping while walking off a curb, can lead to severe injuries in elderly people. It’s essential that everyone, from physicians to caregivers, is prepared to deal with such issues in the best possible way.
Here are some reasons why older adults might experience delayed healing in the first place.
Diabetes is one of the most common reasons for delayed healing in the elderly. This disease can negatively affect wound healing because the elevated blood sugar in patients with diabetes narrows the blood vessels and hardens the arteries. Besides that, there’s also diabetic neuropathy which results in loss of sensation, and it can slow down the process of healing as well. If a diabetic isn’t able to feel changes in a wound, it can become more severe.
Delayed Inflammatory Response
The inflammatory response is the first phase when blood vessels expand to let nutrients and white blood cells to reach the wound. Basically, your immune system inflames the wound to prevent further infections in case of cuts, burns, and similar injuries. This process drastically slows down in older adults, which is why their wounds tend to heal much slower than usual.
Reduced Skin Elasticity
The elastic tissue and collagen fibers in the outer dermal layer provide strength and flexibility, as well as help the tissue to recover and restore it to its original state. As we grow older, our skin naturally loses its elasticity, which can also prevent it from recovering quickly. As the tissue is less elastic, it isn’t able to fully return into its natural shape and color, which is exactly why the elderly have a higher risk of scarring from a wound.
How to Recover after an Injury
Recovering after an injury can be a quite long process which takes a lot of time, strength, and patience, which is particularly true for falls — the most common cause of injuries among senior citizens. Advanced age significantly increases the likelihood of hospitalization after a fall, and it’s important to remember that falls account for 87% of all fractures among people older than 65.
Here are some of the best ways to recover after an injury:
Opt for Physiotherapy
Restoring functionality, reducing pain, and improving the overall quality of life should be your top priority when recovering after an injury, which is why you should opt for physiotherapy. No matter what your current physical state is, rehabilitation clinics are there to help you achieve more, so opt for Carine physio services. These can help you achieve your goals and retain your independence, which are benefits you shouldn’t overlook.
Stay as Active as Possible
Staying as physically active as possible is essential after a fall that results in an injury, so do your best to make it happen and you’ll see what we were talking about. You should start with low-impact, low-intensity activities such as walking, which will be more than enough to get your body moving in the beginning. There are also various exercises you can do during recovery to improve your balance and muscle strength, so give them a try and get back on your feet more quickly.
Put Your Mind into It
Truth be told, the process of healing isn’t entirely physical. There are numerous mental and emotional techniques that can help you recover with more success, and the first one includes meditation. It can reduce your stress levels and even strengthen your immune system, which is why you should give it a fair shot. Surrounding yourself with people who love you and care about you is also crucial, as well as monitoring your mood and planning daily activities that make you feel good.
As you can tell, there are a lot of things you should know about recovering after an injury, which can be a quite long and time-consuming process that can sometimes take months. Bear our tips and guidelines in mind and you’ll be able to understand this process and speed it up when necessary. Good luck, and happy healing.