Arthritis Signs for Knees

Adjusting to the signs of aging is not intuitive.  In recent years, I have learned to read, listen to other seniors, and constantly pay attention to the signs my body gives me.

An article in the New York Times Well section brought to my attention that early signs of arthritis could be creaking and popping sounds.  Yes!

The condition for noises in the knees is called Crepitus by medical professionals. To date professionals are actually undecided whether these noises in the knees signal the beginning of Arthritis.  So, what should we be aware of?  Here are some guidelines: Continue reading “Arthritis Signs for Knees”

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Hearing Loss & Dementia

How often have you found yourself questioning whether you heard something correctly, or have asked someone to repeat themselves? Does it happen in a crowded room?  Are you turning up the volume on your TV more often?

  • Hearing loss that occurs gradually as you age (presbycusis) is common. About 25 percent of people in the United States between the ages of 55 and 64 have some degree of hearing loss. For those older than 65, the number of people with some hearing loss is almost 1 in 2. Source: Hearing loss – Mayo Clinic

In my research the following information gave me a more serious approach to thinking about hearing loss and why I should pay attention.

  1. People with mild, moderate and severe hearing loss are 2, 3 and 5 times more likely to develop dementia respectively than people with normal hearing.Even after taking into account other factors that are associated with high risk of dementia, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, age, sex and race, hearing loss and dementia are still strongly associated.  Source: Dementia and hearing loss – hear-it.org
  2. The findings concerning hearing loss and dementia suggest that it might be possible to delay the onset of dementia through the use of hearing aids and paying more attention to the prevention and early identification of hearing loss.Source: Hearing aids, cognition and dementia – hear-it.org

Continue reading “Hearing Loss & Dementia”

Acupuncture & Pain Relief

I admit that when some of my friends suggested I try Acupuncture to relieve the pain in my hands, I was hesitant.  What really prompted me to explore acupuncture was the severe pain I was struggling with in my hands.  In addition, I was taking Ibuprofen, and when the pain became unbearable, I took Naproxen.  My doctor had cautioned me not to take either of these medications on a frequent basis due to other side effects. As I was considering what I would do I came across an article in Health Matters, which is a publication of the White Plains Hospital (WPH) in Westchester, NY.  I was convinced that if WPH was willing to suggest acupuncture to its patients as part of their Cancer Wellness Center program, it was worth a try.

Today, acupuncture is being practiced in all 50 states by over 9,000 practitioners, with over 4,000 MDs including it in their practices. Acupuncture has shown notable success in treating many conditions, and over 15 million Americans have used it as a therapy. Source: Acupuncture | definition of acupuncture by Medical dictionary

Continue reading “Acupuncture & Pain Relief”

Are there benefits to positive thinking?

I’m not one to make light of the fact that for some seniors aging is a difficult challenge. Loss of the ability to function the way we could when we were younger; loss of friends and companions; sickness.  All of these things add to enormous stress, and sometimes despondent feelings.  But what if thinking positively could help us out?  Should we at least try to find a way to cultivate this habit?

An article in the New York Times suggest that our thoughts can do “far more than raise one’s spirits”.  How about if thinking positively could boost your immune system, alleviate depression, lower your blood pressure, give you better weight control.  Would you try it?

Continue reading “Are there benefits to positive thinking?”

Not taking your meds? Caution!..

I must admit that I am guilty of not taking my medications sometimes.  It’s not intentional really, but it does happen. It could seem like a simple thing missing, or not taking your meds. Right?  It turns out that it could actually be life threatening !  Yes!

Following is a summary of a New York Times article. You can check and find out whether you are using these excuses for not taking your meds. Non-adherence to taking prescribed medications results in
50 % of prescriptions for chronic diseases not being taken as prescribed, typically people take only half of their prescribed doses.

  • Approximately 125,000 deaths and 10 percent of hospitalizations are the cause of non-adherence to prescriptions. If the drugs are not taken correctly they do not work.
  • A third of kidney transplant patients don’t take their anti- rejection medications. In addition, heart attack patients do not take their blood pressure meds.  Moreover, children with asthma do not use their inhalers at all, or consistently.

Continue reading “Not taking your meds? Caution!..”

Easing Arthritis Pain with Essential Oils

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As some of you know, I am an Essential Oils Enthusiast.  So, you can imagine my delight when I learned that I can use Essential Oils to ease my arthritis pain, which I have developed in my hands. Arthritis is not uncommon in senior citizens.  As I read information from the Arthritis Foundation, I learned  some of the key points cited below, and  I think they may be useful to those of you who are also suffering from arthritic pain.

  • While the risk of arthritis increases as you age – half of people 65 and older have arthritis – the truth is people of all ages get arthritis including children and young adults. Source: Home – Arthritis Foundation Blog
  • Aromatherapy can have a powerful impact on your well-being, including your level of pain. “Certain scents activate smell receptors in the nose, which triggers a reaction in the nervous system,” says Julie Chen, MD, an integrative medicine physician in San Jose, Calif. This, in turn, stimulates the part of your brain that controls emotion, triggering the release of hormones such as feel-good dopamine. Source: Aromatherapy for Pain Relief – Living With Arthritis

essential-bottles-w-herbsTry some of the suggestions below for relieving your arthritis pain:

  • Bergamot and Lavender for Pain : This blend reduced pain levels in people with chronic pain who inhaled it regularly over four months, a 2014 study in BioMed Research International found.
  • Try it: Blend 2 to 12 drops of essential oil with a tablespoon of milk or vegetable oil (undiluted essential oil can irritate skin), and add it to a bath. Or mix 15 to 20 drops with 1 ounce of jojoba or almond oil to dab on your wrists or massage into skin.
  • Ginger for Pain: A 2008 study in Complementary Therapies in Medicine showed that people with moderate to severe knee pain reported less pain and stiffness after they were massaged with a ginger-and-orange oil than an unscented one.
  • Try it. Mix 10 to 15 drops of ginger essential oil with 1 ounce of jojoba or almond oil; massage directly on the skin.

You can learn more about essential oils at my  Website: http://www.judithguerra.com/  Click the More button  
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Osteoporosis & Men

canstockphoto6235141What Is Osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis, which means “porous bones,” is a condition that causes bones to gradually thin and weaken, leaving them susceptible to fractures. About 2 million fractures occur each year due to osteoporosis.   Source:  What is Osteoporosis? – WebMD

Oftentimes, when we hear or read  about Osteoporosis we connect this condition to women who can experience bone loss during menopause. However, in a recent New York Times article it states: Men experience about half as many osteoporotic fractures as women. But when a man breaks his hip because of osteoporosis, he is more likely than a woman similarly afflicted to be permanently disabled and twice as likely to die within a year. Source: Men Get Osteoporosis, Too – The New York Times

Below is a summary of some key issues that should be addressed and focused on by men:

  • Men with prior incidents, where bones were broken, can be at risk for oseoporotic fracture, and should have their bones checked. Every man over 70 should have a bone density test.
  • Osteoporosis should no longer be considered a disease solely of women.  Men can also lose bone as they age.  For example, almost 30 percent of all hip fractures occur in men.
  • Being underweight, smoking, and the number of alcoholic drinks per day are common risk factors for osteoporotic fractures in men.
  • Medications, rheumatoid arthritis, Parkinson’s disease are some of the issues that increase risk.
  • There is a tool (FRAX) developed by the World Health Organization, which can evaluate risk of an osteoporotic fracture.
  • Calcium, vitamin D, exercise with weight-bearing and resistance, in addition to non smoking can all help to keep osteoporosis from becoming harmful.

Take a moment to read the full article for detailed information.

Walk your talk!

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21  years ago my doctors recommended and insisted that I had to have heart surgery. Yikes! So, an Open Heart Surgery was performed. Yes. They sawed me open and made of me a heart-healthy person.  I won’t entertain you with all the details, but, needless to say, the surgery was successful! ‘Cause I am here to walk my talk😎

It was after the surgery that I had an instance of Ms Oprah’s famous saying: an ‘AHA Moment’…!

I was out of the hospital. For all intents and purposes, the doctors did exceptional work. I would continue to live feeling better. However, I was so weak I could not walk across the street(!) I was still a young woman in my 40’s. I realized in that moment that walking is not an entitlement. It is a gift. I promised myself that I would walk again and looked forward to attaining the strength and ability to do so. walk-498070_1920

My cardiologist later advised me to walk as a way to continue exercising and that it would be enough to sustain the practice.

heart-914682_1920The American Heart Association advises that 10,000 steps a day is a good way to satisfy our minimal exercise commitment. It helps our mobility; positively influences issues with cholesterol, diabetes, memory,  and general well-being, including our weight level.

Why not take a leap toward a healthful day and step-up! Walk your talk.

Click the pictures for walking guidelines😎💕

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