Drug And Alcohol Addiction In The Elderly who-addiction-affects

Substance Addiction Among Senior Citizens

Although it's not unpopular for an addiction later in life, the health effects of substance abuse for those over the age of 65 can be even more dangerous than in younger users.


In the UK, substance addiction among senior citizens is a constantly increasing health issue. The Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services classifies elderly addicts into hardy survivors (continuous substance abuse starting from younger years) and late onset (those who developed the habit during senior years). There are treatment options available to help you get back on a healthy path, regardless of how old you are or when your addiction started.


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


Factors Of Addiction In The Elderly

There are several things involved in contributing to someone turning to substance abuse later in life. These could turn out to be health-related concerns or life-changing situations that assume an emotional toll.

Substance abuse can be seen as a solution to these situations, which can lead to a comprehensive addiction. 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
  • Death of a close family member, spouse, friend or a pet.
  • Financial strains or loss of income
  • Relocation or placement in a nursing facility
  • Insomnia
  • Family conflict
  • Health deterioration (depression, memory loss, major surgeries, etc.)

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The Risk Of Senior Citizen Substance Abuse

The human body becomes more vulnerable to the ill effects of drugs as it grows older.

Some of the most dangerous prescription drugs for seniors are Benzodiazepines which are used to treat pain, anxiety or insomnia. They are extremely addictive and easily prescribed. Benzodiazepine addiction of elderly is found to have grown each year.


People above the age of 65 have a diminished capability to metabolize substances or alcohol together with a heightened brain sensitivity to them. The mere intake of drugs of alcohol in excess is already risky enough at this age.


Difficulties In Distinguishing Dependence In Senior Citizens

Drug or Alcohol abuse may actually imitate symptoms of other mental or medical health disorders, such as dementia, diabetes or depression.

Thus it gets easier for doctors who experience an older patient to chalk up declining mental or physical health simply 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 addiction can be hard to identify in this demographic, it's essential to give attention to any unusual signs your elderly loved one exhibits.

Drug usage in the elderly can sow itself in signs including

  • Memory loss or gap
  • Changes in sleeping habits
  • Unexplained bruises
  • Depression, anxiety, sadness
  • Unexplained chronic pain
  • Changes in eating habits
  • Prefers to be alone often
  • Undesirable hygiene
  • Losing communication with loved ones
  • Losing interest in usual activities

It is crucial to search out a treatment centre that has particular experience working with seniors struggling with addiction, once an addiction is recognized.

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. These case management services will offer the ageing with reach to medical, psychiatric and social resources to grant for a very healthy wellbeing to progress after healing.


Senior Citizen Addiction Statistics

The alerting level at which people with 65 years and older are growing dependencies to different drugs is definitely reason for worry and a thing that should not be neglected by medical personnel, caretakers or blood relations.