How To Cope With A Decreasing Sense Of Smell

senior-woman-smelling-daffodilsThere are millions of Americans over the age of 55 who have a problem with their sense of smell. In fact, it is a problem that affects around 24 percent of seniors. Presbyosmia – the loss of smell – is not preventable. There are a number of unexpected ways that it can affect a senior’s life. We want to provide you with a few different issues related to losing your sense of smell that you might not have thought about before.

Food May Taste Differently – Problems With eating

If you have a head cold, you have experienced that food does not taste great. Your olfactory cells are unable to detect the scent of food when your nose is stuffed up. You can experience all those wonderful smells again when your nose clears up. As we get older, this sensation becomes less and less – making food less enjoyable.

If you want to add some spice to a meal (if your loved one is sensory deprived) you can use aromatic herbs such as rosemary, thyme, and basil. Adding these (and other spices) is going to add to your cooking.

It Might Be Necessary To Take Safety Precautions

People use their sense of smell for more than appreciating food and enjoying flowers – your sense of smell offers a safety factor. When you are cooking, you might smell that something is burning on the stove before your eyes are able to pick up on the impending danger. Make sure that there are working smoke detectors when your loved one lives alone, or make sure that seniors are safely living in an assisted living facility. Because seniors might not be able to smell a gas leak, it is also important to have carbon monoxide detectors.

There May Be An Underlying Issue

Your senior loved one may not be experiencing natural sensory loss, despite the fact that it is normal to lose some sense of smell as we get older. There might even be tumors, sinusitis, or nasal polyps. It is a good idea to schedule a doctor’s appointment if your loved one notices a decrease in their sense of smell.

By using a light and a scope, a doctor is going to determine whether something is blocking the nasal passages. At that point it is possible to discuss any other symptoms such as difficulty breathing, a stuffy or running nose or other issues.

If you want to make sure that your loved one is taken care of and does not run the risk of having to cook without a sense of smell, it might be a good idea to consider an assisted living facility. The better options are found on www.carltonseniorliving.com.

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