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Elderly And Their Addiction

Senior Citizens And Substance Addiction

Drug abusers aged 65 and above are prone to more risks and it may be surprising but addiction is common even at this age.


In the UK, substance addiction among senior citizens is a constantly increasing health issue. According to the Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services, drug misuse within older citizens can be grouped into two general types: the "hardy survivor," or those who have been misusing drugs for several years and have attained 65, and the "late onset" squad, which is those who develop dependence at a later stage in life. If you want to beat your addiction, regardless of your age or when you began using a substance, there are numerous treatment alternatives you can choose from.


Undercalculation and under diagnosis of addiction among people 65 and up can limit them from receiving the support they require.


Causes Of Dependence In The Senior Citizens

There are various factors that could lead to a person begin embracing drug misuse later in life. These could turn out to be health-related concerns or life-changing situations that assume an emotional toll.

These are few of the things that are causing older folks to turn to substance abuse. Please give us a call on 0800 246 1509 today, if you or someone you know is battling with addiction problems later in life and requires assistance searching for a treatment program.


Some of the reasons that provoke senior citizens to begin substance abuse are:

  • Retirement
  • Death of someone close, or a pet.
  • Loss of income or financial stress
  • Relocation or transferring to a nursing home
  • Insomnia
  • Family conflict
  • Health deterioration (depression, memory loss, major surgeries, etc.)

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The Risk Of Elderly Substance Abuse

Since senior citizens are increasingly prone to the degrading effects of these substances, drug or alcohol abuse among the elderly is specifically harmful.

Benzodiazepines are probably the most hazardous prescription substances for elderly, even though they are generally used to treat pain, anxiety and sleeping issues. Despite its addicting potency, it is commonly prescribed by doctors to older people. Every year the rate of senior citizens addicted to benzos increases.


Metabolizing substances is much more difficult for senior citizens, together with an enhanced brain sensitivity to drugs or alcohol. That means that even those senior citizens that aren't addicted are exposing themselves to increased risk if they use drugs or alcohol.


How To Recognize Addiction In The Elderly

Symptoms of other medical or mental health disorders, such as diabetes, dementia or depression, may really be posed by alcohol or drug abuse.

That is why "being old" is often a primary diagnosis for most psychological or physical health issues senior citizens receive at the doctor's.


Symptoms Of Dependency In Older People

The mental health, physical health and personal relationships of people may start to deteriorate as they get older. It's important to pay attention to any unusual signs your elderly loved one displays, although addiction can be difficult to recognize in this demographic.

Some symptoms of senior citizen drug abuse you should pay attention to are:

  • Amnesia
  • Alteration in sleeping habits
  • Unexplained bruises
  • Depression, irritability, sadness,
  • Unexplained chronic pain
  • Changes in eating habits
  • Want to be left alone
  • Failing to bathe or stay clean
  • Losing ties with loved ones
  • Lack of interest in regular activities

It is critical to find out a treatment centre that has specific experience working with seniors facing addiction once an addiction is identified.

It is also important to admit them to facilities that specialise in elderly addiction due to the commonly lacking family or social support at this age. Approach to medical, psychiatric and social resources to permit for a healthy lifestyle to continue after treatment is offered to the seniors by these case management services.


Senior Citizen Misuse Statistics

Family, friends, care providers and doctors need to stop ignoring the disturbing rate of addictions to numerous substances among people age 65 and older since it really is a thing to worry about.