******* Please respond to discussion below with a paragraph add citation and references :}******************
As we age, our bodies go through a lot of changes. Physical changes occurs in every system in our body. Some example are bones that may shrink in size and density; muscles, tendons, and joints that may lose strength and flexibility. Swallowing and digestive reflexes may slow down, kidneys may become less efficient and memory loss may occurs. Skin changes as wrinkled, vision changes, hearing loss, weight gain among others physiological changes may occur, too. All those changes can make the person more vulnerable to illness, physical injury or disability. There are a lot of characteristics of the aging process that can increase the person’s vulnerability to suffer abuse. Some of the characteristics include memory problems such as dementia and Alzheimer’s, mental illness, physical disabilities, depression, and impair judgment due to medications (polypharmacy). Elder abuse can be physical, sexual, emotional, or psychological harm by a trusted person inflicted on an older adult, including financial exploitation or neglect (WHO, 2018). When nurses are performing a health assessment in a geriatric patient establish a good communication and rapport is extremely important. Nurses need to keep in mind all the changes that can occur with the elder adult such as decline in functional abilities, normal physiological changes and possible cognitive problems. Be able to differentiating abuse from normal changes in the aging process is essential when assessing geriatric patients. Signs such as bruises (old and new, clustered on one part of body, or on both upper arms), eye injuries (black eyes or detached retinas), abrasions or scrapes, vaginal or rectal pain, broken bones, fears of being touched and sudden or gradual change in appearance or behavior can be an indicator of abuse and requires further investigation.
Geriatric assessment: Essential skills for nurses (2011). American Nurse Today 6(7). Retrieved from https://www.americannursetoday.com/geriatric-assessment-essential-skills-for-nurses/
Health Assessment: Foundations for Effective Practice Retrieved from https://www.gcumedia.com/digital-resources/grand-canyon-university/2018/health-assessment_foundations-for-effective-practice_1e.php