Safely Retaining Independence While Aging in Place

Safely Retaining Independence While Aging in Place

According to AARP, more than 90 percent of people over the age of 65 want to remain at home as they get older. This popular choice of aging in place is an excellent way to help seniors retain their independence, but many families fail to consider the many factors that help determine whether their loved ones can safely remain at home. If your parents wish to age in place, you need to evaluate their needs with an eye toward the future and take into account a number of things that will determine whether aging in place is a viable option. Examine Personal Considerations Proximity/relationship to family and friends. Do friends and family live nearby? Are they available to help your loved one? Have candid conversations before they become necessary to ensure a support network is in place. Temperament. Are your parents self-sufficient and do they enjoy living alone? Are they active and social, willing and able to extend themselves to connect with others, or are they introverted and prone to isolation? Evaluate the Physical Home The safety and practical comfort of a home for an aging loved one is a major concern. S.A.F.E can adapt seniors’ homes after conducting a home evaluation that looks at the following: Stairs/levels. This is one of the more obvious perils for seniors, and falls are the number one cause of preventable hospitalizations. Lighting. Easily overlooked, adequate lighting is very important. Doors and doorways. Thresholds that aren’t flush to the floor, glass sliding doors that may be overlooked, and doorways too narrow to navigate in a wheelchair can be hazards. Hallways. Are hallways wide...
The Importance of Preventive Care: Don’t Trust Your Health to Luck

The Importance of Preventive Care: Don’t Trust Your Health to Luck

March is a month when four-leaf clovers pop up, climaxing with the celebration of St. Patrick’s Day which was on the 17th. While it’s nice to fantasize that finding a four-leaf clover might bring luck, or believe in the “luck of the Irish,” relying on luck is no way to address health — especially as we age. According to a 2015 article from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), preventive services are highly underutilized by seniors, despite their potential to save lives. These are sobering statistics: Only 25% of adults aged 50 to 64 are up-to-date on services. Less than 50% of adults aged 65 or older are up-to-date. This is quite distressing, especially since routine preventive services are covered, in part or completely, by most insurance plans, including Medicare and Medicaid. Clinical preventive services can prevent or detect disease early, when treatment is more effective. These services include screenings for chronic conditions, immunizations for diseases like influenza and pneumonia, and counseling about personal health behaviors. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends a number of preventive care screenings for seniors, including the following: Blood glucose and Type 2 diabetes Cognitive impairment Colorectal cancer Coronary heart disease Depression Glaucoma Hearing loss High blood pressure Impaired visual acuity Osteoporosis In addition, counseling is suggested with respect to fall prevention and alcohol and tobacco use. Plus, because our immune systems weaken over time, putting us at higher risk for certain diseases, the CNC recommends in addition to a seasonal flu vaccine and Td or Tdap vaccine (tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis), seniors should also get: Pneumococcal vaccines, which protect against...
The Benefits of Aging

The Benefits of Aging

If we wanted to philosophize about the benefits of aging, we’d probably focus on the value of the wisdom acquired throughout a life of experiencing new things and learning important life lessons. But, we’re taking a more lighthearted approach; how about all the discounts that are available to seniors? Rather than feeling despondent about advancing age, we suggest embracing each year that passes and celebrating the ability to enjoy a high quality of life during your “golden years.” People are living robust lives into their 60s, 70s, 80s and even older, due to medical advances and a greater focus on healthy living. And, the older you get, the more you can take advantage of discounts that pay homage to your longevity (and some even begin at age 55). Many companies offer discounts but don’t advertise them, so ask; you’ve earned it! Eating Out Chili’s: 10% off Denny’s: 10% off (20% for AARP members) Dunkin’ Donuts: 10% off or free donut with coffee IHOP: 10% off the regular menu KFC: free small drink with any meal McDonald’s: discounts on coffee everyday Subway: 10% off Retail and Apparel Dress Barn: 20% off Goodwill: 10% off one day a week (varies by location) Hallmark: 10% off one day a week (varies by location) Kohl’s: 15% discount every Wednesday Ross: 10% off on Tuesdays Grocery Albertson’s: 10% off the first Wednesday of each month Fry’s Supermarket: free Fry’s VIP Club Membership and 10% off every Monday Kroger: 5% discount on Thursdays Transportation Alamo, Avis, Budget, Hertz, National: up to 25% off American Airlines, Southwest Airlines: discount fares for ages 65+ Amtrak: 15% discount...
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