Pneumonia Symptoms For Seniors, and Symptoms of Pneumonia in Adults are often overlooked because usually, the initial symptoms of this condition look mild. In reality, pneumonia in the elderly has got the capability to cause significant complications, even deadly, if not treated promptly.
Can pneumonia put lives at risk?
Generally, people with pneumonia can recover after receiving hospital treatment for 1-3 weeks. Even so, the disease can also lead to death from complications.
Some groups that are more prone to complications due to this disease such as infants and toddlers, seniors over the age of 65 years, smokers, and people who have also previously experienced respiratory diseases. Pneumonia itself ranks number one on the list of diseases that kill the most children aged 5 years and under.
Can the symptoms of pneumonia be experienced by adults?
Pneumonia or pneumonia is one of the infectious diseases that attack the respiratory tract. In adults, pneumonia can cause hallucinations and confusion. And the disease is at risk of causing death in children, the elderly, and people with weakened endurance.
There is little difference in pneumonia that affects children and the elderly. Although equally fatal and can lead to death if not treated quickly, the symptoms of pneumonia in children and the elderly are different.
In children, common symptoms of pneumonia are high heat, shortness of breath, and phlegm cough accompanied by blood. In the elderly, the symptoms are milder because they rarely cause fever and phlegm cough.
Why Pneumonia Often Attacks Seniors?
One reason is that immunity decreases after the age of 50. So it’s no surprise that someone over 90 years of age has weakened immunity. Pneumonia that has inflammatory characteristics in the lungs is common in winter. In addition, there are also other respiratory diseases such as flu that are contagious in winter.
What are the causes and risk factors for pneumonia in the elderly?
Pneumonia can occur in anyone, but elderly people are one of the groups at high risk of developing the disease. Here are a few reasons:
Weakened immune system
With age, the immune system also weakens. As a result, the body’s ability to fight pneumonia-causing bacteria or viruses also decreases. That is why the elderly are more at risk of developing this disease.
The presence of other diseases
Pneumonia in the elderly is also easier because they usually already have other diseases, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, stroke, or heart disease. This causes the elderly to become more susceptible to pneumonia.
There are many elderly people who have smoking habits and it is difficult to quit smoking. This habit can increase the risk of pneumonia. Chemicals in cigarettes can weaken the immune system, making pneumonia-causing bacteria and viruses easier to attack.
The elderly are an age group that is vulnerable to health problems that require long periods of hospital treatment. This makes the elderly more at risk of exposure to pneumonia-causing bacteria or viruses that spread in hospital environments.
What are the characteristics of pneumonia in the elderly?
At times the symptoms of pneumonia are difficult to comprehend since They Are like other Signs of respiratory illnesses, such as influenza and hepatitis. Generally, the symptoms of pneumonia have been as follows:
- Cough with thick phlegm, until cough bleeds
- Fever Breath becomes short-lived
- Chest pain
- Lip and nail color turn bluish
In addition to the above symptoms, there are also symptoms of pneumonia that usually only occur in the elderly, namely:
- Unable to withstand urination or defecation
- Often confused
- Low body temperature
Are There Complications of Pneumonia in the Elderly?
Pneumonia in the elderly can cause a variety of serious complications. The following are some of them:
Ingress of bacteria into the bloodstream
Pneumonia-causing germs in the lungs may enter the blood. This problem is known as bacteremia and can cause the disease to spread into various organs. It has the potential to result in organ failure in the elderly.
Acute pneumonia can cause the elderly to have difficulty breathing, so oxygen intake throughout the body will be greatly reduced. If this happens, the elderly may need to be hospitalized or even use a ventilator until their condition improves.
Pneumonia in the elderly can cause pleural effusion, which is the build-up of fluid in the cavity between the lungs and the inner wall of the chest cavity. This fluid will press on the lungs and make it more difficult for the sufferer to breathe. If the fluid is too much, the doctor needs to remove it with a special hose or surgery.
A pulmonary abscess is a condition where bacteria form pus-filled sacs in the lungs. Generally, abscesses can be treated with antibiotics, but sometimes pus needs to be removed through surgery.
In addition to direct splashing of saliva, there are many ways of transmitting pneumonia. To avoid this infection, you should recognize What is Pneumonia Contagious Period After Antibiotics? this is more information.
When to be hospitalized?
If the symptoms worsen, you may need to diopname. The following are the symptoms and signs of pneumonia that require hospital treatment:
- Fever continues to rise beyond 40ºC despite taking medication
- Severe shortness of breath
In addition, people at high risk are often immediately advised to be hospitalized once diagnosed with pneumonia by a doctor. These high-risk people are:
- People whose immune systems are weak
- Have heart disease or other lung conditions
- It was very sick before pneumonia
- Babies, young children, and adults 65 Decades and older
When treating pneumonia in the hospital, you will be trained by a physiotherapist to regulate cough techniques in order to remove phlegm more effectively and can cough without feeling too much pain.
If you experience shortness of breath, you may be fitted with an oxygen hose to aid breathing. Will also be given antibiotic pneumonia through an infusion. Infusion is also performed to help meet the needs of fluids and electrolytes during diopname.
Make sure you follow the treatment recommendations given to avoid complications of pneumonia that may arise.
How much time does it take to get over pneumonia?
It may take six to eight weeks for you to carry out your routine after undergoing treatment in the hospital for pneumonia. However, the time it takes for everyone to recover after pneumonia, is not the same, depending on:
- Causes of pneumonia
- How severe is pneumonia
- Whether or not you have other risky conditions
Most people with pneumonia continue to feel tired for about 1 month or more. If you continue to feel tired after undergoing treatment, you need to rest fully to speed up recovery and prevent relapse.
When you’re recovering, limit contact with family and friends. It is useful to prevent pneumonia germs in the body from spreading to your loved ones.
In addition, you need to cover your mouth and nose when coughing, immediately throw tissues into a closed trash can, and wash your hands properly often.
If you take antibiotics, your doctor will make sure that the chest x-rays are back to normal after taking all prescribed medications. This may take several weeks.
Prevention of Pneumonia in the Elderly
The following are some ways that can be done to prevent or reduce the risk of pneumonia in the elderly:
- Vaccinate for pneumonia
- Enough rest
- Regular exercise
- Consumption of balanced nutritious food
- Wash your hands with soap regularly
- Steer Clear of trigger variables, like air pollution and Cigarette smoke.
Pneumonia in the elderly can cause life-threatening complications. If you have an elderly family member, especially if he or she still smokes or has certain diseases, you should be more vigilant. If you notice symptoms of pneumonia in the elderly, immediately take him to the doctor for examination and treatment.