Older Adults: Improve Your Quality of Life
Chiropractic care contributes to improved quality of life for older adults. As evidence, simply compare the list of common medical conditions among those in their mid-60s and beyond to the list of the benefits of routine visits to a chiropractor. They look a lot alike.
For instance, the World Health Organization reports that common health conditions among seniors include neck and back pain, osteoarthritis, and depression. Others include vertigo and cancer.
Meanwhile, the chiropractic community across the web touts their ability to combat those exact same sources of chronic and acute pain, some of which result in immobility and loss of strength due to lack of physical activity.
For older adults looking to enhance their quality of life, all it takes is trust in the local spinal alignment specialist to not only treat but also prevent pain and discomfort throughout the body.
What is Quality of Life?
Quality of life is an abstract concept; it means something different to everyone depending on his or her experiences, dreams, and age. In an effort to peg a definition of “quality of life” among older adults, consider the U.S. News and World Report article detailing how retirees ages 65 and older spend their time.
According to the report, retirees spend approximately two and a half hours a day on home improvements, such as housework, gardening, and food preparation. They spend nearly one hour every day shopping, 45 minutes socializing, and 30 minutes volunteering. Retirees also exercise about 22 minutes a day. Other activities include relaxing, watching television, and bathing and dressing.
Similarly, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that among adults aged 65 years and older, “walking and gardening or yard work are, by far, the most popular physical activities.” Not to mention playing with grandchildren.
These activities require bending over, balancing, standing for periods of time, and raising arms overhead to pull on a shirt. Though seemingly simple movements, for older adults they are not necessarily pain-free.
Meanwhile, the CDC expresses the importance of regular physical activity among older adults.
So, how do older adults both conquer the pain and stay active and healthy to maintain a high quality of life? This is where natural healthcare provided by a chiropractor can help.
Common Medical Conditions Among Older Adults
Chiropractors believe many older adults can live a normal life without being overly protective of their bodies if they commit to treating and preventing pain that comes with age. They can achieve this with the help of regular visits to the chiropractor.
In fact, an estimated 14% of patients treated by U.S. chiropractors are 65 and older, according to a study on PubMed Central, a journal archive of the U.S. National Institutes of Health’s National Library of Medicine.
While the most common reason they seek treatment is to address musculoskeletal pain, chiropractors employ an intervention called spinal manipulative therapy to address symptoms of a range of conditions, including:
- Lower back pain
- Upper back pain
- Neck pain
- Knee pain
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
- Parkinson’s disease
- Multiple sclerosis
- Urinary incontinence
Although chiropractors are most commonly known for their expertise in spinal manipulative therapy, they also are uniquely qualified to address the patient as a whole.
For instance, more than 90% of chiropractors report providing nutritional advice and recommend nutritional supplements, according to the PubMed Central report. Most also recommend therapeutic exercises and advise patients to engage in physical activity.
Chiropractors are concerned about the big picture of their patients’ health and wellbeing.
Improving Quality of Life with Chiropractic Care
When older adults place trust in a chiropractor, they can work together to create an individualized, safe plan to help them meet their quality of life expectations.
Here are some of the benefits of regular chiropractic care:
- Mobility restoration through improved flexibility, join alignment, and alleviation of tight muscles.
- Improved muscle strength and range of motion through strengthening exercises to target weak muscles.
- Long-term pain relief, including pain associated with osteoarthritis and general inflammation.
- Lower risk of injury, including fractures.
- Improved balance, reducing risk of falls.
- Higher levels of energy due to improved sleep quality and mood.
- Additional years of free, independent living. In fact, a study by Dr. Ian Coulter found that older adults who receive chiropractic care are much less likely to move to a nursing home (5% of those who had chiropractic care vs. 48% of those who did not) and experienced fewer hospital stays (lifegivingchiro.com).
Older adults who choose a chiropractor, like Strelcheck Chiropractic Clinic, appreciate the impact of this alternative and natural approach to treating and preventing pain that often comes with aging. Even though they may only seek to treat one particular area of their body, the results are felt everywhere and improve overall quality of life.