Infectious Diseases

From flu to STDs, seniors face many immunity challenges

Infectious Diseases
Ask any senior citizen and they’ll tell you – they get the sniffles more often than they used to. It’s not because more bugs are going around; it’s because our immune systems face greater challenges as we get older.

That’s also why some infectious diseases pose more of a threat to seniors. Not only does your immune system weaken with age, it’s often got more work to do if you are dealing with multiple or recurring health problems.

Seniors need to be especially vigilant about pneumonia and influenza – two infectious diseases that are usually easy to treat in younger people but can be fatal in the elderly. Your best defense is an annual flu shot and regular check-ups to ensure common colds don’t turn into something worse.

In this section, we look at some of the most common infectious diseases that affect the elderly: how to recognize them, how to defend against them, and how they are treated. And not all of them are acquired innocently – you’ll be surprised to learn about the growing number of seniors being treated for STDs. Try explaining that to your grandkids!