Substance Abuse in Seniors: The Harrowing Truth


Article contributed by Sally PerkinsPhoto by Alexandre Debiève on Unsplash Although individuals 65 years and older only comprise 13% of the total population, they account for almost 30% of all medications prescribed in the United States. As a result, seniors are at a momentous risk for prescription drug abuse and addiction. Add to these already-disturbing statistics, the increase of alcohol abuse amongst seniors and we are left with a very vexing problem requiring immediate intervention. The State of New Jersey takes substance abuse very seriously and have a host of preventative and corrective measures in place in an attempt to minimize the impact of the abuse. When seniors fall victim to substance abuse, the ensuing consequences are often grave. Prescription drugs and alcohol have more debilitating effects on individuals older than 65 due to fact that they have a decreased ability to metabolize the substances and are also more sensitive to...

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Seniors Take Charge!


By Helen Varvi, Deputy Director @ Wellspring No one looks forward to dealing with chronic illness as they get older, but research shows that most of will us experience two or more of these conditions during our lifetime. When we think of health problems, we define them as either acute or chronic. For most acute illnesses there is a quick onset, diagnosis, a treatment period, and then a cure or relief can usually be expected. But chronic conditions are different. They begin slowly and proceed slowly. They frequently have multiple causes and progress over time, so that a quick fix is often not available. There are, however, many things that older adults can do to make their lives easier. One is to take charge! The first thing is to realize that we just can’t avoid these conditions or wish them away. And while some would argue that doing so is a...

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