While substance abuse is harmful at any point in life, it is the most detrimental in old age. In tandem with an increasing number of life changes, seniors usually begin to supplement their health with more over-the-counter medications and prescription drugs, which can create harmful interactions in the body and spur addiction. And as a person grows older, the body’s ability to process each of these medications slows significantly. For this reason, seniors may become addicted to much smaller doses of prescription drugs than young people.
Here is a good resource to help raise awareness of the warning signs of substance abuse in the elderly and how to seek help.