When a loved one falls ill or receives a diagnosis, one of the first things that family members do is familiarize themselves with this new condition. As we age, though, we are far more likely to develop more than one long-term health issue that requires ongoing medical attention. In fact, it is estimated that three-fourths of Americans over age 65 have multiple chronic conditions. Learning about a love one’s illness seems relatively straightforward, but understanding how multiple ailments, treatments and medications can interact is far more complex.
Gathering as much information as you can about a loved one's health care will enable you to better converse with their doctors, understand their symptoms, facilitate their treatment and assist them with activities of daily living. In this section, you will be able to enhance your knowledge of common senior health issues through the unique perspectives of physicians, elder care experts, fellow caregivers and patients themselves. Knowledge is power, and an empowered caregiver is a successful one.