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Introduction to Research Theme: Physical Health

This research theme's focus is on the physical health and wellbeing of older adults with intellectual disability. This theme includes oral health and dentistry, bone health and osteoporosis, falls and fear of falling, frailty, cardiovascular health, diabetes and obesity.

The experience of physical health and well-being can be very different for older adults with intellectual disability. Frequently individuals experience poorer health than their non-disabled peers, many have atypical presentation of health conditions especially individuals with communication challenges or language limitations resulting in many conditions going unrecognised or unmet.

Combined with evidence of higher rates of morbidity and mortality, and the current policy changes that are influencing health care delivery for this cohort, individual's experience of health may be compromised. Knowledge of the specific age-related health risk factors can lead to enhanced prevention or early diagnosis of potentially impairing conditions. Therefore developing a body of knowledge on the physical health and well -being of individuals is an imperative contribution to enhancing the quality of life of people with intellectual disability.

Physical Health Team