The Impact of Poverty on Social Determinants of Health for Older Adults

Discussion #1 ( Yamaxil Brito)


Old age is often characterized by depreciating health and general well-being. For instance, the majority of people affected with chronic infections are usually older individuals due to their reduced immunity and limited activities (Singu et al., 2020). Even though the social determinants of health apply to everyone older individuals are the ones that are greatly impacted by these social determinants especially when they are from lower economic backgrounds. Therefore, this paper will discuss how social determinants of health for senior citizens are influenced by those living in poverty.

The first social determinant is access to quality healthcare. Since senior individuals are prone to be victims of chronic infections and conditions related to accidents, they require frequent and quality healthcare intervention or services to lead a comfortable life. However, medical services are usually expensive in many nations including the United States of America which is among the developed nations with no universal care (Hill-Briggs et al., 2020). Therefore, when older adults are living in poverty they might not have enough disposable income to take care of their medical bills and frequent consultations hence lowering their levels of comfort. Quality care is very essential, especially for older individuals that are why many nations have enacted policies to ensure that older adults living in poverty can easily access these services. For instance, in the United States of America, the Affordable Care Act was enacted to ensure that older adults suffering from certain chronic infections can easily access medical care.

Nutrition or food security is also another social determinant that can significantly influence the well-being of older adults. Food is a very essential component of life, and everyone needs food for the normal metabolic functioning of the body (Hill-Briggs et al., 2020). Older adults, especially those suffering from chronic infections such as diabetes may require foods that are very nutritious and healthy as opposed to junk food. However, a healthy and nutritious diet might be more expensive than a non-nutritious diet hence forcing those older adults living in poverty to consume unhealthy foods that might have adverse effects on their health. Additionally, older adults living in extreme poverty might lack the financial capability to access daily or regular meals, and this can have adverse effects on their already depreciating health.

Social interactions and belonging is also another essential social determinant for the healthy well-being of older adults. Everyone needs a social support system and a sense of belonging to lead a healthy life. Older adults, especially those living in poverty might lack the required social support to enable them to lead a healthy life due to several reasons. For instance, senior adults living in poverty might be abandoned by their families and forced to reside in homes. This might have an adverse impact on their psychological well-being (Singu et al., 2020). Additionally, since senior citizens engage in fewer activities they may lack an opportunity to create a social connection with others. For those older individuals living in poverty, this limited physical activity might be heightened because they might be unable to pay for services such as a caregiver, gym membership, or join a club to help create a social connection.

Discussion #2 (Allain Castellat mendez)


Regarding older adults living in poverty, the social determinants of health shape their prosperity and personal satisfaction. These determinants include social, monetary, and natural factors that can uphold or hinder older adults’ health results. Let’s explore how older adults living in poverty impact these social determinants of health.

Income and employment are fundamental social determinants of health. For older adults living in poverty, restricted financial assets present significant challenges. They need more income to manage the cost of adequate healthcare, nutritious food, and safe housing (Snyder-Mackler, et al., 2020). It might force them to focus on necessities over preventive healthcare and prescription, leading to neglected healthcare needs and worsening health conditions. Furthermore, poverty can make older adults work longer hours or take genuinely demanding positions, hurting their physical and psychological well-being.

Training is a crucial determinant often impacted by older adults living in poverty. Limited access to educational opportunities and low literacy levels makes it more difficult for older adults to understand health-related information and make informed choices (Snyder-Mackler, et al.,2020). Health education is necessary to ensure their capacity to participate in healthy behavior, oversee ongoing circumstances, and explore the healthcare framework successfully. Training additionally gives older adults better work possibilities and financial soundness, which can influence their general prosperity.

Housing and the environment significantly influence the health of older adults in poverty. Many faces substandard housing conditions, including inadequate heating or cooling, form, and overcrowding. These circumstances can prompt respiratory ailments, intensify ongoing health conditions, and increase the risk of falls and injuries (Snyder-Mackler, et al., 2020). Additionally, living in neighborhoods with restricted admittance to safe outside spaces, sporting offices, and transportation can determine open doors for actual work, social interaction, and local area commitment, which are significant for healthy aging.

Social help and organizations are imperative for older adults’ health and prosperity, yet poverty can add to social seclusion. Restricted financial assets might limit their capacity to participate in local area exercises, maintain social associations, and access consistent reassurance (Middlemiss, et al., 2019). Social isolation and loneliness have been linked to increased depression, nervousness, mental deterioration, and persistent illnesses. A strong social support system is beneficial for an emotionally supportive network, is helpful for psychological well-being, and gives practical help, like transportation to healthcare appointments or assistance with daily exercises.

Admittance to healthcare is an essential determinant often compromised for impoverished older adults. Financial constraints and restricted assets can make it challenging for them to manage the cost of healthcare administrations, prescriptions, and preventive screenings (Middlemiss et al.,2019). Subsequently, they might delay vital healthcare, leading to untreated circumstances, infection movement, and less favorable health results. The absence of transportation and long appointment waiting times can block their admittance to ideal and fitting care.

Sustenance and food security are fundamental for healthy aging, yet older impoverished adults face difficulties accessing nutritious food. Food insecurity is common among this populace, so they require predictable admittance to good, healthy, and socially fitting feasts (Middlemiss, et al., 2019). Restricted financial assets often drive them to depend on the minimal expense, fat, and supplement unfortunate food choices, leading to hunger, compromised safe capability, and an increased risk of persistent illnesses.

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