The first of America’s 78 million baby boomers are nearing 70 years of age. As more and more seniors approach retirement and develop health problems, it’s important to take steps now so you can remain active and healthy for as many years as possible.
These tips can help baby boomers stay safe and healthy:
Take Steps To Avoid Falls
One out of three people age 65 and older fall each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It’s the leading cause of injuries among this age group.
Make sure your home is as safe as possible by taking some simple precautions:
- Keep areas where you walk clutter-free.
- Make sure lighting is adequate.
- Use assistive devices such as grab rails in the tub and shower if needed.
- Make sure your steps are in good repair.
Regular exercise can help you stay as independent as possible as you age. You’ll have a reduced risk of a wide variety of health problems, such as heart disease and diabetes, and will be better able to manage any existing health issues.
Walking is one of the best forms of exercise, even if it’s been a while since you were active. Just make sure to check with your doctor before you start an exercise program.
Keep Up With Immunizations
Immunizations aren’t just for children. Your chance of getting a common illness that can cause serious problems or even death is reduced if you’re vaccinated against the disease.
The Centers for Disease Control recommends that all adults receive the flu vaccine each year, as well as a Td or Tdap vaccine if you didn't receive it as an adolescent. The zoster vaccine, which protects against shingles, is also recommended if you’re 60 or over. Depending on your age and health concerns, your doctor may also suggest additional vaccines.
Get Regular Checkups
As a busy baby boomer, you may be tempted to visit the doctor only when you’re sick. Regular checkups, however, can help catch problems before they become worse. Having your vision checked every year, for example, can catch eye-related problems like cataracts or glaucoma. You’ll also need to ask about bone density tests, colon cancer tests, and skin cancer tests.
Men should talk to their doctors about prostate exams, and women should make sure they’re up-to-date on any pelvic exams or mammograms they might need.