U.S. adults aged 85 or more years are approximately three times as likely to need assistance with activities of daily living as are adults aged 75 to 84 and are six times as likely to require help as those aged 65 to 74, according to newly released data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
For men and women combined, 20.7% of adults 85 or older need help with tasks such as eating, bathing, dressing or walking, whereas 7% of those aged 75 to 84 and 3.4% of those aged 65 to 74 do, according to data from the 2016 National Health Interview Survey conducted by the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics. Data came from the survey’s Family Core component, and analyses for 2016 were based on 97,459 people in the component.
Overall and among all three age groups, women were more likely than men to require assistance with personal care last year, the researchers found.
Overall, 6.4% of adults aged more than 65 years needed help with personal care in 2016, a percentage that was not significantly different from the 2015 estimate of 6.9%. Looking back to 1997, researchers could not discern a particular trend related to needs.
In the over-65 population, non-Hispanic white adults were less likely to need ADL help than were Hispanic adults and non-Hispanic black adults, according to the CDC; 5.8% of non-Hispanic white adults, 9.7% of Hispanic adults, and 10.6% of non-Hispanic black adults required assistance.