Can Diabetes Raise My Older Parent’s Stroke Risk?

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Does Diabetes Increase a Senior's Risk of Stroke in McKinney, TX

High blood sugar might not show many symptoms at first, but chronic blood sugar imbalances can lead to major issues. When seniors have diabetes, they’re more likely to develop serious infections, heart disease, and other problems. One potential issue to be aware of is strokes.

Research Linking Diabetes to Higher Stroke Risk

Over the years, there has been a lot of research done on the link between diabetes and stroke risk. In 2015, a nationwide study published in the journal Medicine looked at more than 24,000 adults with diabetes and 96,000 adults without diabetes. Researchers followed these individuals for years and found strokes were much more common in those with diabetes. According to the American Diabetes Association, people who have diabetes are 1.5 times more likely to have strokes than those without diabetes. All types of diabetes worsen stroke risk, but those with type 2 diabetes have an especially high risk.

Having excessive blood sugar levels can adversely affect your loved one’s health, wellbeing, and overall quality of life. Seniors who want to remain healthy as they age can benefit in a variety of ways when they receive professional elderly home care. Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one accomplish daily tasks, prevent illness, and focus on living a healthier and more fulfilling life.

Diabetes & Stroke Outcomes

In addition to being at higher risk for strokes, people with diabetes are more likely to have serious strokes. When they have strokes, diabetics have a much higher risk of death than nondiabetics who have strokes. Furthermore, they also have a higher risk of negative outcomes such as pneumonia and urinary tract infections, and they tend to stay in the hospital longer following strokes. This happens because diabetes can impair the healing process and make it easier for people to have serious complications.

The Reason Diabetes Causes Strokes

There are a few different factors associated with increased stroke risk among diabetics. First of all, many people with diabetes tend to have higher blood pressure. Over time, high blood pressure puts strain on blood vessels, so it can lead to a stroke. People with diabetes are also more likely to be obese and have heart disease, which can also heighten stroke risk. Research published in the American Journal of Epidemiology in 1988 found that even when controlling high blood pressure, obesity, and other risk factors, diabetics still had a higher overall risk of stroke. This happens because diabetes increases overall inflammation throughout the body. People with diabetes have a higher risk of developing blood clots, and if these clots lodge near the brain, strokes occur. 

If your senior loved one needs help managing an illness or assistance with daily tasks, make sure you choose a top-rated provider of home care service. Allen Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one live a happier and healthier life in the golden years. From the mentally stimulating activities in our Cognitive Therapeutics Method to our friendly Care Managers who are available to answer your questions 24 hours a day, we offer a wide array of high-quality at-home care services.

How to Lower Stroke Risk

First of all, working with a doctor to get diabetes symptoms under control can reduce the chance of a stroke. It’s also important to work on a healthier lifestyle. Eating a diet with more fiber and less sugar, salt, and fat can boost cardiovascular health. Exercising more than five times a week can also lower blood pressure and stroke risk. Limiting alcohol intake and quitting tobacco usage can reduce stroke risk further. These changes all tend to help with diabetes symptoms as well, so they have multiple benefits.

Seniors living with serious health conditions often need extensive assistance in and outside the home. Home Care Assistance is a trusted provider of Allen live-in care. Our caregivers are expertly trained to assist seniors with bathing, grooming, light housekeeping, and various other daily tasks, and we also offer specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care. Call us at (972) 548-0392 to create a customized in-home care plan.

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