Lecture: “Aging: taking care of the elderly”
Last October 23rd, MD María Elena Cruz Maldonado, Teacher of the Preventive Healthcare and Public Health Department of the Medicine School UANL hosted the lecture on aging and the elder population. Students from the CETIS 66 were present and participated actively during the lecture; afterwards the students visited the Nutrition, Experimental Therapeutics, and Bioimaging Units.
The purpose of the lecture was to create awareness of what is currently happening with the elder population. The numbers have increased globally the last years. Europe leads the list with the highest elder population numbers.
The increase of elder people comes as an aftermath of scientific progress and achievement; that is, medical, diagnostic, and therapeutic medicine. However, it is important to mention social achievements, the people that look after the elder and their rights. Regarding Public health, many laws and policies have been created to help this population. All these measures have the purpose of counting with the necessary measures to cover the cost of an aging population and the increasing costs of attending them.
MD María Elena Cruz Maldonado gave advice to the students, to develop techniques and use technologies to benefit the elder population, and to bolster mental games and exercises on the elder to keep them healthy in their body and minds.
According with data from the National Institute of Statistics and Geography, in 2018, 53.6% of elderly people have a disability. The three most frequent causes of death on elderly people are: Heart disease, 25%; High blood pressure, 22%; and Diabetes Mellitus, 15.9%; however, there are also malignant tumors, cerebrovascular disease, lung disease, liver disease, kidney failure, malnutrition, influenza, and pneumonia. All these diseases are of high risk for elder people, and we should not rest importance to any of them, mentioned MD Cruz Maldonado.
Lic. Maria Lourdes Carrillo, Psychology of the ISSSTE (Institute for Social Security and Services for State Workers), and a guest to the lecture, mentioned that the interventions on the elder must be whole on psychological and emotional aspects. The elder constantly live in dueling processes due to physical changes and health loss, and role changes as well.
Lic. Alejandro González Sosa, also a guest on the lecture, spoke of another very important topic: caretakers of the elderly. He explained how we can improve the care we give to the elder, and mentioned that if a person has an elder person at home, it is advised to share responsibilities and not leave everything to one single person of the family. This way we can improve the life quality of the elder.