It should come as no surprise that cigarettes are incredibly bad for the lungs, but some smokers don’t realize just how much damage they’re doing to other body parts. Studies from around the world are now linking tobacco products to a variety of different medical conditions, which is why seniors need to do everything in their power to quit as quickly as possible. Here are six reasons older adults should give up smoking immediately.
1. Increased Cognitive Health
Researchers have discovered that smoking increases the risk of dementia. The toxins in cigarettes boost oxidative stress, which is a leading risk factor for Alzheimer’s and many other cognitive health conditions. Some specialists believe smoking inflames and eventually damages brain tissue.
If your loved one does develop a cognitive disorder such as Alzheimer’s, he or she might need professional home care. Seniors living with Alzheimer’s disease aren’t the only ones who can benefit from Alzheimer’s care. Winnipeg families have much to gain as well, especially if they’re the ones currently providing care. Professional Alzheimer’s caregivers can watch over your loved one, giving you the chance to relax, focus on other responsibilities, and prevent burnout.
2. Enhanced Eye Health
A senior’s vision slowly gets worse with age, but the deterioration should be very gradual. Smoking cigarettes can speed up the process and increase the risk of age-related macular degeneration. Older adults who are having difficulty quitting need to consider comprehensive treatments such as nicotine replacement therapy.
3. Reduced Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
Diabetes Canada claims that just over 11 million residents have diabetes or prediabetes, and this number could continue to grow in the coming years. Dietary habits play a major role in the development of this disease, but tobacco products can affect the metabolic system as well. Tobacco products also exacerbate some of the worst symptoms of diabetes. Quite a few strategies can be used to quit smoking, including individual therapy and support groups.
4. Strengthened Bones
Fractures are often catastrophic for older adults, and a single break might result in lifelong balance and mobility issues. Some experts believe tobacco products limit blood flow to the bones, which could eventually result in deterioration. Smoking is now listed as a leading risk factor for osteoporosis as well.
Brittle, broken, or fractured bones can pose significant quality-of-life issues for an aging loved one. Performing daily tasks while simultaneously managing the symptoms of a serious illness can be challenging for seniors. The Winnipeg live-in care experts at Home Care Assistance are available 24/7 to make sure your loved one has the care he or she needs to remain safe and comfortable while aging in place.
5. Minimized Joint Damage
Arthritis is a life-altering joint condition. When left untreated, it can make everyday tasks extremely difficult to carry out. One of the most effective ways to reduce the risk of arthritis is to give up all tobacco products. Joint inflammation is a common side effect of smoking, and the swelling could eventually damage the joints or speed up the deterioration that is already taking place.
6. Increased Dental Health
In addition to impacting the appearance of a senior’s smile, tobacco products can also affect oral health. The use of tobacco products is one of the leading risk factors for gum disease, halitosis, tooth decay, tooth loss, and many other serious oral health issues. According to a recent study published in the Journal of Dental Research, smokers are 3.6 times more likely to lose their permanent teeth than nonsmokers.
One of the best things anyone can do for a senior parent who smokes is to help him or her quit. If your aging loved one needs help managing everyday tasks or encouragement to adopt healthier lifestyle choices, turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of senior care. Winnipeg Home Care Assistance provides professional in-home caregivers around the clock to help seniors live longer, happier, and healthier lives. To create a customized home care plan for your loved one, call (204) 489 6000 today.