MOST COMMON CAUSES OF DEATH AMONG OLD PEOPLE
The leading causes of death among adults over the age of 65 are also among the
most common causes of death among the population as a whole. Many of these
conditions are also highly preventable and treatable. It is important to understand
these diseases, know when and where to get treatment, and know how you can
live with them to help prolong life and health.
If you have diabetes, your body has trouble using glucose from your food as fuel.
Type 1 diabetes, which involves the body’s immune system attacking the cells that
make insulin, cannot be prevented. Much more common is Type 2 diabetes, in
which glucose builds up in your blood instead of being used as energy.
Falls represent more than half of accidental deaths, followed by car accidents,
suffocation, and poisoning. Simple falls can result in fractures that cause
immobility, disability, and may hasten death.
Balance disorders, failing eyesight, and slower reflexes may contribute to a
greater risk of accidents than the general population.
A stroke occurs when the brain doesn’t get the blood it needs, either because of a
blockage in a blood vessel supplying the brain, or the rupture of a blood vessel in
the brain. Your risk of stroke is higher if you’ve been diagnosed with high blood
pressure, have high cholesterol, or diabetes.
Septicemia, or blood poisoning, refers to a serious infection in your bloodstream
caused when you have a bacterial infection in one part of your body and it
spreads to your bloodstream. This serious condition can cause an overwhelming
infection and death. Smoking, obesity, and a sedentary lifestyle all increase your
risk of developing sepsis. Staying up to date on all recommended immunizations
will lower your risk, as does good hand hygiene.
Lung, prostate, and colorectal cancers are the most deadly forms of the disease in
men. Though a family history of cancer may increase your chances of getting it,
there are steps you can take to minimize your risk.