Some of the reasons for such increased susceptibility would be, the weakened immune system, underlying chronic disease conditions, poor hygiene, immobility…etc. Although these are common phenomena when someone reaches the elderly age, we have to take measures to alleviate such risk factors for being susceptible to infections in order to live a happy and a healthy elderly state.
When considering the infections that are at a higher prevalence among the elderly, it would seem that, even the ones with a similar prevalence among the other age groups would manifest rather virulently among the elderly. At the same time, the infections that are likely to spread rapidly will catch on to the elderly individuals more quickly than in young individuals. Furthermore, the infections that set in would likely to develop in to complications and will take a longer time to cure in the elderly than among other age groups. When taking all of this into account, it is evident that, elders would have some sort of intolerability of infections and it needs to be corrected in order to stay infection free.
So, what can we do? Following are few suggestions for an elderly individual to tolerate the infections much more effectively than an average elderly person.
Eat a balanced diet
Balanced diet would include plenty of vegetables and fruits along with adequate amounts of proteins and fats as well. Such a diet would lay the foundation for building up of the immune system. But, in certain instances, the elderly individuals would not be able to take foods as anyone else does due to various reasons and in such instances, alternative methods of providing nutrition should be taken to avoid being infection prone.
Undertake regular exercises
Exercises would make a person active and would support in maintaining a proper circulation throughout the body. This will enable an elderly person to fight infections more effective and would also make sure the toxic substances and metabolites would be expelled effectively.
Live stress free
Living with stress would be another cause for lowered immunity and therefore, reducing the stressors would be one method to reduce the susceptibility towards infections. Thus, meditation, yoga, breathing exercises, recreational activities, family support…etc would all be contributing towards relieving possible stressors.
Keep any chronic conditions under control
Conditions such as diabetes could increase the susceptibility of an infection and therefore need to be controlled effectively. Thus, taking medications appropriately and following regular checkups should be undertaken to be fit for tolerating infections.
Apart from these, maintaining good hygienic practices and cleanliness would also be vital to tolerate infections during this age.