Cold and flu season is in full swing, but there are many other common infections that can wreak havoc on both the young and old, regardless of what time of year it is. For infants, children, adults over the age of 65, and those with weakened immune systems, infections can be more than just an annoyance. In fact, the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) reports that one-third of all deaths in seniors over 65 are from infectious diseases.
For the elderly, there are a handful of common infections that pose a threat more than others:
- Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) – According to the AAFP, UTIs are the most common bacterial infection in older adults. UTIs may be caused by the use of catheters or diabetes, which are both common among this older population.
Skin Infections – As we get older, it becomes much more difficult
for the skin to heal itself. Because of this, skin infections are much
worse – and more common – among seniors. Some of the most
common skin infections include:
- Viral infections like shingles
- Bacterial infections such as cellulitis or folliculitis
- Drug-resistant infections
- Pneumonia – The AAFP reports that more than 60 percent of all seniors visit the hospital because of pneumonia. There are numerous reasons why those over 65 are at a higher risk of developing pneumonia. This includes changes in lung capacity, exposure to disease, and the prevalence of conditions like diabetes and cardiopulmonary disease.
- Influenza – Everyone can get the flu (influenza), but it is particularly dangerous amongst seniors. In fact, influenza is the sixth-leading cause of death in America, and 90 percent of those who die from influenza are seniors.
- Gastrointestinal Infections – Seniors are at a much higher risk of developing gastrointestinal infections, such as gastritis and Clostridium difficile, which is a common infection that causes diarrhea.
How to Treat Common Infections
Infections happen, and it is important to understand the risk factors and what to do about it. For the young, elderly, and those with weakened immune systems, you should never ignore your symptoms. While many common illnesses and infections will go away on their own, higher risk groups should seek medical attention right away. Here at Urgentology Care, we always have trained medical staff to evaluate and treat you. If you or a loved one are feeling ill, bring them into Urgentology Care in Arlington today for an assessment. Your health and wellness are our top priority and we will do everything we can to ensure you receive the treatment you need to get better. We offer a wide range of solutions aimed at treating the common infections listed above, as well as others.
Important: If you have a life-threatening emergency, please call 911 or go to your nearest Emergency Room. Information in this site is not intended to be used as a diagnosis for your symptoms. If you experience any of these symptoms, please seek medical attention or visit Urgentology Care.