Nursing Home Patients Getting Younger

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The number of younger residents in nursing homes has made a surprising increase, challenging caregivers who have to accommodate them.

New government numbers show about one in seven nursing home residents in the United States are under the age of 65, a 22 percent increase during the last eight years.

Experts attribute the increase to medical advances that have kept people alive after traumatic injuries, and an increase in the closing of mental health facilities.

Nursing home caregivers say younger residents share many of the same physical demands as older residents. But the different psychological and social needs of younger patients pose a greater challenge for the professional caregivers.

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