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Drug And Alcohol Addiction of Senior Citizens

Substance Abuse Among Elderly

It's not new to grow dependence at a late stage in life, but the health consequences of drug ill-use for individuals above the age of 65 can be even more severe than in younger abusers.


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. Irrespective of what age you are or when your dependence commenced, there are healing alternatives present to assist you assume a healthy life.


Dependence within individuals of 65 and over is normally underestimated and under-diagnosed, which can actually avoid them from receiving the assistance they urgently require.


Factors Of Addiction In The Elderly

There are various factors that could lead to a person begin embracing drug misuse later in life. These could be health problems or life-altering occurrences which lead to a psychological burden.

These situations may arouse substance ill-using trait that can lead to an all-out dependence. Please contact us today on 0800 246 1509 if you or a person you care about is having addiction troubles in their older age and require help with looking for a rehab program.


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

  • Retirement
  • The passing of someone they hold dearly.
  • Financial strains or loss of income
  • Relocation to a nursing home
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Family conflict
  • Health deterioration (depression, memory loss, major surgeries, etc.)

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The Risk Of Elderly Substance Abuse

Older persons are at greater risk of experiencing hazardous effects of drugs and alcohol, which means that substance abuse is a lot more dangerous for them.

Benzodiazepines are probably the most hazardous prescription substances for elderly, even though they are generally used to treat pain, anxiety and sleeping issues. These are prescribed generously and are more addictive. Year after year, the rate of elderly benzos dependencies is steadily increasing.


Individuals over 65 have an increased brain sensitivity to drugs or alcohol along with a decreased ability to metabolize them. This makes it very risky for elderly individuals to utilize substances or alcohol at all, despite the person being not addicted.


Distinguishing Addiction In The Elderly

Some of the psychological or physical health issues, like dementia, depression or diabetes might actually have similar side effects to substance abuse.

This makes it very simple for physicians who come across an elderly patient to tally reducing psychological or physical health just to "old age."


Symptoms Of Dependency In Older People

The mental health, physical health and personal relationships of people may start to deteriorate as they get older. Even though dependence can be troublesome to identify in this demographic, it's really vital to take note to any strange symptoms your aging loved one shows.

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

  • Memory loss
  • Sleeping troubles
  • Unexplained bruises
  • Irritability, depression, sadness
  • Persistent aches or pains
  • Changes in eating habits
  • Desire to be left alone
  • Undesirable personal hygiene
  • Cutting off communication with family
  • Losing interest in usual activities

It is important to look for a rehab facility when you recognize an addiction, especially one with a particular expertise with addiction among elderly.

Individuals over 65 typically lack the social support required throughout recovery therefore, you should look for programs that offer case management services and also specialize in this type of addiction. Access to medical, social and psychiatric resources that can help seniors keep up their healthy habits once they leave treatment will be secured by using these case management services.


Senior Citizen Misuse Statistics

The high rate at which individuals 65 years and older are forming addictions to several substances is surely cause for concern and something that should not be neglected by healthcare professionals, caretakers or family members.