Popular accounts of dementia in the media often fail to capture its sheer brutality. The pain of dementia extends far beyond the person suffering from it, affecting entire families and relationships — often for years and even generations. Whereas popular depictions often present dementia as memory loss or forgetfulness, families facing dementia know that dementia can be much more.
Whether you’ve been waiting for a break from the summer heat for months or dreading the end of planting season and endless flowers, winter cold is inevitable. Flu shots, plenty of hand-washing, and a hefty dose of holiday cheer and time with family can help you stay healthy and happy this season. But what about your diet? Nutrition is fuel for your body, so fill up with premium fuel and stay healthy all winter. These winter nutrition tips for seniors can help you enjoy the holidays, spend plenty of time with family, and avoid spending time in a doctor’s waiting room.
Most people are familiar with the physical challenges that aging presents — aching joints, a higher risk of falls, changing skin. Aging also affects the way people think and learn because the brain shrinks and becomes less adept at mastering new information. This can affect memory, slow thinking, and make it more difficult for a person to master new skills. However, the changes are subtle, and people of all ages experience periodic memory slips and gaps in knowledge. Distinguishing the signs of normal aging versus dementia is critical for healthy aging and planning for the future.
More than 43 million Americans provide care to a loved one, 15.7 million of which are caring for a senior who is suffering from dementia. Twelve percent of parents are also caregivers, squeezing them between two challenging roles. Although loving your aging parents comes naturally, caregiving does not. There’s a steep learning curve for everyone who steps into this vital role. So don’t feel guilty because you don’t immediately know how to manage the many needs of your aging parents. This simple checklist can help you protect your parents and make the most of your caregiving efforts.
Senior adults are often at a higher risk for certain medical diseases or conditions as they age. Unfortunately, older adults living with complex medical conditions can also be diagnosed with more than one serious and complicating disease as well. Breast cancer is an example of a disease that can be discovered at any age, but the risk does increase as women age past 60.
When you think about balance, you might envision the seemingly impossible contortions of a ballet dancer or the high-wire act of a tightrope walker. But balance is more than just a novelty. It’s a key skill you use in just about everything you do. Good balance can reduce your risk of falling and make it easier to walk, go up and down stairs, and perform simple daily tasks such as vacuuming and dusting.
The new year is a time to turn inward, to reflect on where you have been and where you are going. The changes you make this year can catapult you into better health, protect your future, and help you live a more meaningful life. So ditch bland resolutions about weight loss and eating fewer cookies. Make 2019 a year of transformation and joy with these New Year’s resolutions.
The benefits of exercise are virtually infinite. Working out helps you live longer, reduces symptoms of depression and anxiety, and may even counteract genetic risk factors for various diseases. Promising research suggests that people with a gene linked to Alzheimer’s can counteract the gene by exercising. But finding the motivation to exercise can be tough, especially if you struggle with pain, mobility, or low energy. A few simple strategies can transform exercise from something you dread into something you might actually enjoy.
The aging process can make it difficult to continue pursuing activities a person once loved. It’s normal to slow down a bit with age, but many caregivers mistakenly assume that apathy and disconnection are normal parts of aging. According to a new study published in JAMA Psychiatry, apathy is actually a significant health risk factor that doubles the risk of developing dementia.