Medical Alerts for Seniors with Malnutrition

Medical Alerts for Seniors with Malnutrition

time icon 5 min read update icon Sept. 28, 2019


Malnutrition occurs when the body does not receive sufficient nutrients.The Malnutrition Quality Improvement Initiative (MQII) found that one in three seniors admitted to hospitals suffers from some degree of malnutrition.

Malnutrition Introduction

Malnutrition in elderly individuals is a growing problem. Seniors are becoming malnourished for a wide array of reasons, such as medical disorders, lack of interest in cooking, change in taste, dementia, lack of funds to buy nutritious foods, lack of mobility, medications, depression, trouble swallowing, chronic illnesses due to a low immunity, and overall age-related declining health. Malnutrition can causea senior to feel weak, confused, depressed and sick.

Malnutrition Impairment

The warning signs of malnutrition are diverse. Many seniors ignore them until it is too late and their bodies have become extremely weak. People often mistakenly believe that being physically obese means that they are not malnourished, but being physically heavy does not mean that a person is receiving adequate nutrients to meet their body’s physical needs.

  • Weakness
  • Frailty
  • Mobility issues
  • Confusion
  • Dizziness
  • Feeling unwell
  • Hallucinations
  • Weight loss
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Delayed healing
  • Frequent infections
Medical Alert Benefits

No matter what the underlying cause of malnutrition might be, the dangers are overwhelming. You could fall and be too weak to pick yourself back up. In an extreme case, you may fall and break a bone. You could become confused and forget to turn off the stovetop, which could lead to a fire. One day, you might be too weak or sick to get out of bed, and may require immediate help.

Having medical alert services gives you the ability to quickly summon emergency assistance from any part of your home. You are never alone with medical alert services at your disposal.

Symptoms of malnutrition include:

  • Weak muscles
  • Mobility issues
  • Dizziness
  • Depression
  • Increased risk of infection
  • Delayed wound healing
  • Confusion
  • Increased susceptibility to illness
  • Difficulty staying warm
  • Poor concentration
  • Hallucinations
  • Weight loss
  • BMI under 18.5
  • Reduced appetite
Safety Without Medical Alerts

If you are suffering from malnutrition, you can opt to live your life without medical alerts, but you should take extra steps to improve your safety to prevent possible accidents.

  • Mobility: Malnutrition hinders your mobility and causes a weakened, frail physical form. Keeping a walker or cane closeby can help you move safely from room to room. Also, installing handrails in your bathroom or other areas of your home will help you navigate without falling. A stand-and-assist can also be placed beside your bed.
  • Confusion: You should carry a cell phone with you everywhere you go so you can quickly call for help without having to look for a phone. Keep a list of numbers to call family and friends if you should become confused.
  • Staying warm: Keep your home’s thermostat turned up so you can stay warm. Place extra blankets on your bed and keep throw blankets nearby.
  • Increased risk of infection: Keep hand sanitizers nearby to sanitize your hands. Use antibacterial soap and cleaners to battle bacteria.
Malnutrition Precautions
  • Consult a nutritionist: Consult a nutritionist to design a diet plan to meet your body’s specific nutrient requirements. Lack of appetite and weight loss are dangerous and can send you into a physical downward spiral. It is imperative that you consume nutritious foods. If you don’t have a nutritionist, ask your doctor for a referral.
  • Deal with depression: Depression should never be taken lightly. If you start to no longer take enjoyment out of life, find yourself sleeping excessively, or lack enthusiasm, then you should consult your physician. You can also reach out to friends and family for support.
  • Dizziness and weakness: If you become dizzy and physically weak, consider using a walker or cane to walk from room to room. In extreme cases, you may need to contact medical assistance to prevent a possible fall or other mishap.
Malnutrition Medical Alerts Conclusion

Malnutrition in elderly individuals is a growing problem in America. If you suffer from malnutrition, then you are likely facing a wide array of physical obstacles that could cause you to fall, or cause some other accident to occur. You may also suddenly become too ill to even get out of bed. In such a situation, having a medical alert service to summon help can be a lifesaver.

Kimberly Sharpe - Senior Advisor

Kimberly is senior researcher with Grandfolk® providing in-depth product and service reviews to empower senior buying decisions.