As we age, we all want to stay fit and healthy. But for older adults, weight loss can sometimes be worrisome.
It happens more times than not, possibly due to a lack of appetite, that unintentional weight loss in older adults occurs. Is the sudden weight loss in a loved one something to be concerned about? Does it point to a health problem? There are steps you can take to keep your loved one healthy, especially if you’re aware of the sudden weight loss causes and what to do about them.
Where older adults are concerned, what does sudden weight loss entail? It is an unexplained, unintentional, and quick loss of weight. Sudden weight loss is experienced in between 15% to 20% of older adults. Due to shrinking muscles and other side effects of aging, some weight loss can be normal. It can be a sign of an underlying condition, however, if, over a short period of time, a substantial amount of weight is shed. In one month, if there is a 5% body weight loss – or over six months, a 10% body weight loss – there might be a problem.
When Older Adults Lose Weight Suddenly
Sudden weight loss in older individuals can end up having serious health consequences such as the following:
- Increased need for nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and/or long-term care facilities
- Cognitive mood disorders worsening
- Greater risk of injuries and falls
- Loss of ability to perform grooming, dressing, bathing, and other daily living activities
Why Sudden Weight Loss Occurs
Sudden weight loss in an older adult might be a sign of a medical condition lying just under the surface. If a loved one has experienced weight loss rapidly, don’t ignore it.
Sudden weight loss in aging adults is commonly associated with some of the following conditions:
- Gastrointestinal problems
- Dementia types such as Alzheimer’s disease
An older adult’s nutrition level and eating habits may also be affected by social and/or behavioral factors including the following:
- Improper or inadequate caregiving
- Financial constraints
- Dental issues causing reduced food intake
- Limited mobility
- Multiple medications causing adverse effects
Additional Signs of Failing Health in Older Adults
The following key warning signs could mean that weight loss is becoming a problem:
- Loss of appetite
- Loss of taste or smell
Services such as meal plans are offered by most assisted living communities, as well as social opportunities, health monitoring, medication management, and more. All of these are targeted at keeping residents safe, healthy, and active.
Are you looking for an assisted living community because your loved one has experienced a recent weight loss and may no longer be able to care for themselves? If so, read on.
Aston Gardens At Pelican Pointe – Enjoy An Elegant Dining Experience
At Aston Gardens At Pelican Pointe, your loved one can once again enjoy the experience of dining in style with friends and healthy meals.
We have a stylish dining room setting that offers healthy, delicious meals. With chef-prepared meals according to health needs and/or restrictions, and so much more, we are focused on properly caring for older adults. Enjoy linen tablecloths, friendly table service, sparkling china, and chef-prepared foods that cater to specific health concerns/restrictions/allergies, and more.
For information regarding our apartment home availability, exclusive lifestyle programs, and living options, fill out our convenient online contact form. If you’d like to take a tour of our community, we also have a convenient tour form you can use to schedule one.