Did you know that March is National Kidney Month? The World Kidney Day campaign’s theme for 2014 is “Kidney Health and Aging” and their goal is to reach out to seniors with information on how they can reduce their risk for developing chronic kidney disease (CKD) as they age. Through public outreach events and other resources, World Kidney Day seeks to reduce the impact of kidney disease and its related health effects by educating people about how kidney health affects their overall health.
If you ask most people what the top three chronic health conditions among elderly are, the answer is likely to include heart disease, diabetes and cancer. Unfortunately, many individuals are unaware that CKD is closely related to cardiovascular disease as well as diabetes. At Home Care Assistance of Vancouver, we believe that by educating yourself and your elderly loved ones about the relationship between these health conditions, you can significantly reduce your risk for life-threatening complications from CKD.
What does high blood pressure have to do with kidney health?
When blood pressure is too high over a long period of time, the excess pressure on blood vessel walls causes damage to the fine capillaries in the kidneys. If you have high blood pressure, it is important to manage your condition in order to prevent this irreversible damage. Routine checkups with your primary care physician are of the utmost importance so any problems can be detected early. As with many other diseases, early detection of CKD provides seniors with the highest chance for a positive outcome.
Did you know that diabetes can lead to chronic kidney disease?
Like high blood pressure, diabetes can lead to CKD by causing capillary damage in the kidneys. When people with diabetes do not adhere to their treatment program, the typical result is chronic hyperglycemia or high blood sugar. High blood glucose levels cause the blood to thicken, and this thickened blood pushes against the fine capillaries in the eyes, lower extremities and kidneys. Over time, this leads to permanent damage and loss of function in these organs.
How does CKD impact quality of life for those diagnosed?
Although it is possible to lead a normal life with limited vision or mobility due to capillary damage in the extremities, people with CKD require dialysis treatments in order to flush waste products from the body. Loss of kidney function leads to a significant reduction in quality of life and, ultimately, death.
Pass the word along and educate those you love about Chronic Kidney Disease! For more information about the disease or to speak with a Case Manager about in-home care for an aging parent or loved one, dial 778-279-3634 today. We’d be more than happy to answer any of your questions and can provide information about specialty care for advanced conditions including Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and dementia care in Vancouver.