Caregiver Resources - Frailty

The majority of older adults age well and enjoy health and wellness. A small subset, less than 10% of individuals over 65 years of age or about 30% of those over 80 years of age are “frail”. Such individuals are more likely to have problems of fatigue, weight loss, problems with walking and low mood or memory problems.  Often they have limited finances and social supports. They also are more likely to have multiple chronic diseases and be on many medications.

Frail older adults are at risk of further decline in function and well-being especially with new illness and tend to have to use more health and community support services. There is often a component of reversibility in their frailty which if acted upon can improve their outcomes and quality of life. 

Eating a balanced diet, staying active and being involved with friends and family are important in preventing frailty. Other important strategies for reducing risk of adverse events are regular health checks, attention to medication use and becoming informed about health challenges.

References

  1. B.C. Ministry of Health. (2012). Frailty in Older Adults- Early Identification and Management.  
    Retrieved February 2014 from:
    http://www.bcguidelines.ca/guideline_frailty.html