Seniors and their loved ones can benefit from knowing the family’s health history.
Genetics plays a role in a wide range of diseases, and being aware of the ailments that previous generations suffered from can help inform the preventative steps that should be taken to safeguard seniors’ health, as well as the care they may need as they age. Family medical history should be provided to doctors, and adult children caring for elders will want to inform themselves as well, for the sake of their loved ones and themselves.
Family medical history can give doctors guidance in determining the causes of symptoms a patient is experiencing, and warn them when certain treatments may have an increased risk of side effects. Family history also helps in a reverse way, by assisting doctors in ruling out possible reasons for a patient’s condition.
A family history of heart problems or problems with alcohol may prompt family members to eat better or restrict their drinking. Certain types of cancer in the family may mean that family members should get more than the usual checkups. Knowing about a family history of Alzheimer’s or other dementia can help families plan for the care that seniors may need.
Delving into your family’s medical history can sometimes be troubling, but doctors say that if there is a risk factor present, it is much better to be aware of it, so that preventative measures can be taken.
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