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Frailty in Older Adults


Did you know over half the Australian population aged 65 or over experience frailty or pre-frailty? Frailty can impact a person’s physical as well as cognitive state. It comes about because of changes in our brain, hormones immune system, bones, and muscles as we get older.  At Home Care Assistance, our Care Professionals are trained to recognise frailty and support our clients who are experiencing frailty. We understand that being diagnosed with frailty can be a concerning time. But we are here to help. This blog will look at what frailty is and how to deal with it.

Symptoms of Frailty

The symptoms of frailty can fluctuate from day to day. On a good day, a person with frailty may feel better, and be more independent than on a bad day. Symptoms include:

  • Weight loss
  • Fatigue
  • Confusion
  • Poor balance
  • Frequent infections

Minimising Frailty

Factors that cause frailty include aging, genetics, and the environment. While not all factors can be controlled, including diet changes and exercise can help to minimise frailty.

For example, low iron and vitamin D levels can contribute to frailty, so a diet high in iron and vitamin D can be beneficial. Weight loss is both a symptom of and a contributor to frailty. Many adults have a low appetite or difficulty preparing meals. Eating a healthy diet with enough calories can therefore help prevent frailty. At Home Care Assistance, our Care Professionals can assist in

Exercise can also help minimise frailty by improving muscle tone and flexibility. Regular exercise not only improves strength, balance, and mobility, but it is also good for memory and brain function. Exercise must be done safely, and the appropriate exercise type and level may need to be determined by a medical professional. Our Care Professionals at Home Care Assistance can assist you or your loved one in maintaining your exercise program.

Practical Tips

People with frailty not only do not recover from injury as easily or quickly as they used to but are more likely to experience injury due to balance issues. They may also be more prone to infections and struggle to recover from infection as easily. Some steps can be taken in the home to help prevent injury and infection and to help recovery from these when they do occur. These include:

  • Installing a chair in the shower
  • Ensuring there is clear space to move around the home without trip hazards
  • Installing grab bars in the bathroom and bedroom
  • Limiting visitors who are sick
  • Ensure your loved one is taking care of their hygiene or receiving support to do so
  • Using adaptive equipment as required such as walkers or wheelchairs.

Frailty affects the mind as well as the body. People with frailty can get confused or easily forget things. They may forget to take medications or even eat. They may also get easily lost and confused. People experiencing these symptoms of frailty may require more support such as reminders or extra care.

Receiving a diagnosis of frailty for you or your loved one can be a scary time and raise concerns about what the future holds. However, with the right supports in place, a person with frailty can continue to age well in the home. At Home Care Assistance, our Care Professionals are experts at providing these supports so contact us and find out how we can help if you or your loved one is experiencing frailty.

Support of an in-home care agency like Home Care Assistance, can bring enormous benefit and comfort to your quality of life while living independently at home.  Home Care Assistance has viable solutions when it comes to supporting independent living. For more information, get in touch with a Home Care Assistance near me today.  


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