Caregivers of Older Adults Blog | Substance Abuse

Substance Abuse and Seniors: What All Caregivers Need to Know

By mmLearn.org on Wed, Oct 19, 2016 @ 01:59 PM

There are approximately 2.5 million older adults in the U.S. with alcohol or drug problems, according to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, Inc. Despite its prevalence among seniors, however, substance abuse has been dubbed "an invisible epidemic" by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

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When the Pain Won’t Stop - Innovations in Chronic Pain Management

By Cyndy Marsh on Wed, Jul 10, 2013 @ 02:16 PM

Moms’ forced smile immediately communicated the pain she was in; the pain she complains about almost every day, the pain that won’t stop.  Hearing about all the aches over and over again may cause the caregiver to disengage, doubt or not take the complaints seriously.  Whether it’s back, headaches, joint, or any number of other ailments, the chronic pain persists, with no end in sight.  On the other end of the spectrum there is also the person who does not talk about the pain because they feel no one really listens.  Perhaps after many years of suffering in silence, it has become a way of life for them and may now be accompanied by anxiety, hostility, insomnia or anger and decreased overall physical and mental functioning.  Chronic pain is a common condition for which patients seek care from various health-care providers.  This type of pain causes much suffering and disability and is frequently mistreated or undertreated.

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Some Drugs and Elders Don’t Mix! Updated Beers List

By mmLearn.org on Thu, Dec 06, 2012 @ 02:07 PM

Yep – you read it correctly – Updated Beers List.  Now don’t get too excited, this is not a top ten of all your favorite beers – you won’t find Coors or Bud Lite on this list.   Instead you will find the Criteria for Potentially Inappropriate Medication Use in Older Adults, informally known as Beers List.  This criteria is used by healthcare professionals as a reference about the safety of prescribing medications for older adults.  The list was named after the late Mark H. Beers, MD, a geriatrician, who first created the Beers Criteria in 1991.

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Substance Abuse and Misuse in Older Adults

By Nina Rios on Mon, Apr 02, 2012 @ 03:45 PM

When we think of substance abuse, what comes to mind is often a teenager or young adult when in reality substance abuse among older adults is one of the fastest growing health problems facing our country.  A study in Annals of Epidemiology projected that

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Alcoholism in the Elderly - It's More Common Than You Think.

By Nina Rios on Fri, Sep 23, 2011 @ 01:05 PM

Topics: Substance Abuse

It is common knowledge that alcoholism is a national problem. However, in regard to the elderly, society does not often think about how a response to poor health, bereavement, a change in social activities or loneliness may actually accelerate a drinking problem. Alcohol-related behaviors among the elderly are probably much more prominent than most people realize and have often been called the “hidden population.” For the most part, alcoholism is unreported, undiagnosed, and/or ignored. Part of the problem is getting healthcare professionals to accept that elderly alcoholics exist. According to a report by the American Medical Association, "They may deny that the patient has a drinking problem, or be reluctant to make a diagnosis, because they are uncertain about how to treat the disease or because they question whether treatment is likely to be successful with this age group," the report said.

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