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Four Tips to Stay Healthy and Help Prevent Falls as You Age

(BPT) - As you age, your risk of falling increases. According to the CDC, one out of four people Preventing-falls-staying-healthyover the age of 65 falls each year and falling once doubles your chances of falling again. While many conditions can put you at risk for a fall, there are simple steps you can take to boost your overall health to try to decrease the likelihood of falling.

Carol Cummings, senior director of Optimum Life at a major senior living community corporation, explains how keeping active increases mobility, improves overall health and can help prevent falls. These communities encourage their


Planning for Long Term Care

You can never know for sure if you will need long-term care. Maybe you will never need it. long term care But an unexpected accident, illness, or injury can change your needs, sometimes suddenly. The best time to think about long-term care is before you need it.

Planning for the possibility of long-term care gives you time to learn about services in your community and what they cost. It also allows you to make important decisions while you are still able.

People with Alzheimer’s disease or other cognitive impairment should begin planning for long-term care as soon as possible.

Learn more about advance care planning



Your Medicare Annual Wellness Visit: Preventive Care, Health Planning at No Extra Cost

(BPT) - Once you become eligible for Medicare, you’ll likely start hearing about something called an Annual Wellness Visit.Medicare-annual-wellness-visit

Many people think an Annual Wellness Visit and a physical are one and the same. But they’re not.

Unlike a standard head-to-toe physical, an Annual Wellness Visit is primarily focused on preventive care, health screenings and wellness planning. It gives you an opportunity to have a conversation with your doctor about your health status and goals and then create a long-term plan to help you meet those goals and maximize your well-being.

While Original Medicare doesn’t cover an annual physical, some Medicare Advantage plans do. Everyone enrolled in Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage, though, is eligible for an Annual Wellness Visit at no additional cost to you. If your Medicare Advantage plan includes coverage for an annual comprehensive physical exam, ask your provider if the Annual Wellness Visit and the physical can be scheduled during the same visit.


Organizing Caregiver Paperwork from a Distance

If you are a caregiver or guardian for an aging parent or loved one who lives many miles away, you are faced with the challenge of Caregivers-organizing-paperworkknowing how to help. There are numerous documents - health records, wills, DNRs, Living Wills, advance directives, insurance  policies  -- that must be in place in case of an emergency, and maintaining these from a distance is one of the most important things you can do.  An important part of effective caregiving depends on keeping a great deal of information in order and up to date. Often, long-distance caregivers will need access to a parent’s or relative's personal, health, financial, and legal records.

Getting all this material together is a lot of work at first, and from far away it can seem even more challenging. But once you have gathered everything together, many other caregiving tasks will be easier. Maintaining current information about your parent’s health and medical care, as well as finances, home ownership, and other legal issues, lets you get a handle on what is going on and allows


Geroscience and Health in Aging

geroscience-diagramGeroscience: The intersection of basic aging biology, chronic disease, and health

As we grow older, we are more likely to be diagnosed with one or more chronic ailments. These ailments include life-threatening diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer, as well as debilitating conditions like arthritis, fatigue, and frailty. These ailments rob us of our quality of life. The question is: How does the aging process affect the disease process and susceptibility—and vice versa?

Over the years, researchers studying the basic science of aging have sought to answer this question, but their work was confined primarily to investigations of the specific activities and mechanisms that contribute to the aging process, and not as much on the effects of the aging process on various diseases. While aging itself isn't a disease, the aging process represents a major risk factor for several chronic diseases and conditions, including frailty and lack of resilience.


Make a Difference! Save a Life!

American-red-crossMake a resolution you can keep in 2019! Help the American Red Cross meet the urgent need for blood and platelets by resolving to give blood this January – National Blood Donor Month.

Donating blood or platelets is a way to make a lifesaving impact in the new year for patients like Judy Janssen, who was diagnosed with end-stage autoimmune liver disease in 2016. Janssen received frequent blood transfusions – sometimes multiple times a week – until she underwent a liver transplant last January. “Blood donors make a really big difference with very little effort,” said Janssen, who received dozens of transfusions before and during her transplant surgery. “I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for blood donations.”


Hat Trick

beretDon’t let your head go bare on ovember 25—it’s International Hat Day! Certainly, a baseball cap can fit the bill on this holiday, but why not explore some more exotic and symbolic fashions? The fancy, floppy wool beret is instantly recognizable as French. It began as a hat worn by the poorest classes, such as farmers and artists.

The wide-brimmed sombrero may be synonymous with Mexico, but hats like this were worn by horsemen in Mongolia as far back as the 13th century. If you feel a chill in the air, then opt for the Russian ushanka, the cylindrical fur hat with earflaps that can be tied up over its crown. The modern ushanka can be traced to the Russian Civil War when the ruler of Siberia ordered a winter hat be issued as part of the standard uniform.

The fez of the Ottoman Empire was originally meant to be a symbol of equality and a means to show a common national identity amongst its wearers. Choose your hat wisely, for hats from any country are rich in both history and symbolism.