There are many problems we can often see as being the sort of health issues that affect the elderly. We might see them as expected consequences of getting older, and not expect to experience them ourselves until we're in our 60s, at least. However, there are several problems you can have when you're younger that you might view as being typically an old person's health issue. If you do experience any of these, it could make you feel like you're getting old before your years. In reality, it could mean the issue you experience isn't caused by aging but by something else.
Back and Joint Problems
Everyone knows someone middle-aged or in the senior years who doesn't find it as easy to get out of a chair as they once did. Mobility issues and pain in the back and joints are common for older people, but others of all ages can end up experiencing them. Back pain, in particular, can affect people still in their 20s and can be caused by a variety of factors. Joint problems can result from injuries or even problems like arthritis, which are typically associated with aging but can affect younger people too. If you have any pain in your joints, it's best not to brush it off.
The key times to watch out for problems with vision tend to be childhood and the middle-aged/senior years. However, your vision can change and be affected by various eye health conditions at any age. Even if you've never needed to wear glasses before, you could find yourself needing them in your 20s or 30s. Some people could even experience eye health issues that are much more common in the elderly, such as cataracts, glaucoma or macular degeneration. Regular eye tests are the best way to pick up on any problems. Some experts recommend every two years and some every year, but don't wait if you notice any problems.
Huh? What? If you find yourself asking people to repeat themselves a lot or turning up your TV louder than usual, you could be having hearing difficulties. If you think you're too young for that, you might be surprised to know that 1 in 14 people aged 29 to 40 has hearing loss. Many things can damage your hearing, from listening to loud music to being in a noisy environment at work. There are also some problems that are easy to solve, like built-up ear wax. If you're struggling to hear clearly, you should find an audiologist and get your hearing tested. They can help you check the health of your hearing and discover a solution.
Problems with Memory
The thought of developing dementia when you're older certainly isn't one you want to dwell on. Yet it's a reality for many people. However, you don't imagine that you might need to deal with problems with your memory or other cognitive issues when you're younger. But even though you're far from retirement age, you can still find yourself getting forgetful - or maybe you've always been forgetful. Although early-onset dementia is one possibility, there are actually many things that could cause forgetfulness. From pregnancy and menopause to some medications and even just stress, memory problems can come from a range of places.
Some parts of getting older can be pretty embarrassing. Many older people need help with incontinence, but they're not the only people it can affect. Younger people can often experience incontinence too, and it can be caused by a few different things. In women, two leading causes are pregnancy and childbirth. This can mean that incontinence affects many young women, although it will usually improve not too long after having a baby. It could also result from illness or perhaps having surgery, particularly if you had to have a catheter.
Your teeth and oral health can experience a number of problems when you're older. Your teeth have had a lifetime of action, and you can also have problems such as dry mouth. However, you can find yourself needing a trip to the dentist at any age. You might not be ready for a full set of false teeth just yet, but it's still important to look after your teeth. You might need fillings and perhaps sometimes even an artificial tooth in the form of a crown, bridge or dental implant.
Don't make the mistake of thinking that some health problems are only for old people. You could experience them too, and addressing them is always the best thing to do.