Message to Elders & Parents: Play More, Live Better and Longer

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Play More?
What Does That Mean? Why Should I?

As we are continually confronted with the challenge of Covid19 worries, that impact  our lives,  I am sure we could all use a ‘Time-Out’  – in a positive way.

Research reveals that play as adults can help us to get some relief from our responsibilities, and find ways to manage the stress we feel. Not only will it be good for you, but if you have children, it can be a way to connect and relieve stress for them as well.  Worth thinking about?  The school year will begin shortly in a format that some of us have not quite figured out how to handle, and to bring ‘normalcy’  to our work and school days.  Maybe what we need is a little relief to help us cope through this period.  Below are some sources, which discuss various options and suggestions for placing ‘play’ in your life.

 

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Sources for Ideas

https://psychcentral.com/blog/the-importance-of-play-for-adults/
https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/play-in-mind

Sign Up: Free Exercise and other Classes for Seniors

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I want you to know that on any given day it is not easy for me to “pick myself up” and take “that walk”. However, one of the things that I know for sure about exercising is: afterwards, I feel better.  I can imagine that for some of you, the same is true.  That’s why I am taking the opportunity to share with you the Senior Planet website:  https://seniorplanet.org/get-involved/online/.

Senior Planet has ‘figured it out‘.   That is for certain.  The Senior Planet program makes exercise look attractive, even tempting. I think that Senior Planet may motivate you to join with other seniors, in the comfort of your own home, and at a time and day that is convenient for you. You can choose what type of exercise suits your needs and your moods.  Oh, and did I say that it is free?

Senior Planet also has other online computer classes that you can take:  Art, Tech,  Chair Yoga, Discussion Groups.  It’s pretty impressive.

If you want to think about it first, take the opportunity to sign up for their Newsletter .
https://seniorplanet.org/get-involved/newsletters/

Enjoy!

Senior Care and COVID19

senior telemedicineThe COVID19 – Pandemic has affected us all in how we will lead our lives post Coronavirus. In addition, we senior citizens are being confronted with new methods in order to manage how we live going forward. Major changes have occurred in attending to our healthcare and well-being needs physically, socially, and mentally.  To protect our health, Telehealth is a solution, which allows us to see the doctor without visiting their office.

  • Good news for seniors is that  Medicare has now expanded Telemedicine coverage and you can arrange doctor appointments until further notice, without incurring added charges. This includes chronic conditions like high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes.
  • FYI – The terms Telehealth and Telemedicine are being used interchangeably.  These are the descriptions I found at The American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) – https://www.aafp.org/about/the-aafp/history.html
  •  iPhone users can contact telemedicine doctors using FaceTime. Android users can use Skype.  There are numerous apps, which can be utilized.

doctor-4187242_1920Medicare Descriptions of  Telehealth coverage:
https://www.medicare.gov/coverage/telehealth
https://www.medicare.gov/coverage/virtual-check-ins
https://www.medicare.gov/coverage/e-visits

https://www.everydayhealth.com/healthy-living/the-best-telemedicine-apps/ Continue reading

Exercise is a Win-Win Anytime We Start

If you haven’t already started your New Year’s Resolutions list for 2020, here’s a suggestion for senior citizens who are feeling guilty that they never exercised in 2019, and think it’s too late at this stage in their lives to start.

The good news  for 2020 is that anytime you start exercising you will gain benefits.  In last month’s post, we learned that we could gain a better night’s sleep just by taking a 30 minute walk. Also, younger folks in their 40’s, 50’s and 60’s can benefit as well.  Just 150 minutes of moderate- intensity exercise a week ‘fits the bill‘.  Ultimately, some exercise is better than none.
Park your car a little farther away, and walk to your destination.
Take the stairs more frequently.
Take short breaks during the day. Continue reading

Are Fish Oil Supplements Doing the Right Thing?

On your recent visit to the doctor, did you have a conversation about those Fish Oil supplements you’ve been taking to help with the cholesterol issues you have?  No?  Well, neither did I.  It pays to actually keep up with the latest news on this health stuff.  It is true that eating fish has health benefits. However, until recently,  it was thought that fish based supplements are also a good thing to take for this.

  • In the future,  you may want to think about who is coming to dinner with you.
  • Supplements for cholesterol issues usually  contain Omega-3 fatty acids (polyunsaturated oils). Omega-3 fatty acids are also available by eating fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel.
  • It is suggested that people who eat these types of fish two or more times a week may have fewer issues with heart attacks, strokes, and cardiovascular deaths.
  • Some of the benefits of eating fatty fish 2 or 3 times a week are: lower heart rate and blood pressure; and improved function of blood vessels, for example.

Now it turns out that those studies, which were done 15 years ago, and reported that fish oils/fish eaters, could lower the risk of heart disease,  may not be the only studies to consider. It may be some other factors/characteristics; for example, eating less meat, healthier lifestyles etc., could be contributory factors as well.
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Tips for Home Alone Seniors

Have you ever heard that Aging is not for Sissies’ ? Well, some people make fun of this saying, but on a more serious note, living alone as a senior and aging can be difficult, which is why it is good to know some of the ways seniors can take precautions to protect themselves.  Here is a list of things that we seniors should take note of:

Safety Precautions for home alone seniors:
– Remove clutter.
– Remove tripping hazards (electrical cords, throw rugs).
– Use the grab bars in the shower (or install if you don’t have them).
– Prepare an emergency kit: flashlight, batteries, matches, candles. Put it in a place that is easy to remember.
– Keep track of your keys (put them in the same place every time you come in the door).  Don’t put your name and address on your key chain.
– If the doorbell rings call out,   ‘I’ll get it’,  which will alert the person ringing the bell that you are not alone.
– If you are expecting a service person like cable, or other repairman, have someone keep you company while the service is being handled.
– Have a list of friends that you speak with at least once a week.  You can set up a ‘buddy system’ with each other on specific days to touch base. Continue reading

Tweaking Your Workout Activity

I realize that many of us are not  revved up about getting to a 30 minute exercise class, or walking continuously for 30 minutes.  In addition, many seniors do not have the extra income required to spend  on a health club membership.

I was encouraged by a  recent study, which finds that continuous activity is not a requirement to attain the benefits of exercise.  That is to say, you do not have to workout 30 minutes at a time to gain the health benefits! You can actually accumulate those 30 minutes of activity 10 minutes at a time.

The latest studies, published in the Journal of the American Heart Association are summarized below:
Movement strongly influenced longevity. Men and women who exercised fewer than 20 minutes a day, were at the highest risk of premature death.  Those who moved more often, especially if they were active in a day, cut their mortality risk in half”. Continue reading

Senior Citizen Fitness

I know that we have covered this topic over, and over again.  However, no matter where I search for information about senior citizen fitness, the list below is repeated. Below are just a few benefits :)…

Regular exercise improves the following:

  • Immune Function. A healthy, strong body fights off infection and sickness more easily and more quickly. Rather than sapping energy reserves entirely, recovery from an illness will take less of a toll on the body if the person exercises regularly.
  • Cardio-Respiratory and Cardiovascular Function. Frequent physical activity lowers the risk of heart disease and high blood pressure. If the elderly person has hypertension, exercise will help lower their blood pressure.
  • Bone Density and Risk of Osteoporosis. Exercise protects against loss in bone mass. Better bone density will reduce the risk of osteoporosis, lower the risk of falling and prevent broken bones. Post-menopausal women can lose as much as 2 percent bone mass each year, and men also lose bone mass as they age. Research done at Tufts University shows that strength training can dramatically reduce this loss, help restore bones, and contribute to better balance and less fractures. Source: https://www.agingcare.com/Articles/Exercise-benefits-for-the-Elderly-95383.htm

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