MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 26, 2022

Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com








U.S. drug shortages put people
With life-threatening illness at risk

By Judy Packer-Tursman



Adderall and monkeypox vaccine represent only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to drugs now in short supply in the United States -- some badly needed by patients who are seriously ill with life-threatening diseases.

Pharmacists tell UPI of scrambling to meet patients' urgent needs amid current shortages ranging from basics like sterile water and saline to antibiotics, sedatives and cancer-fighting medications.

They say the situation is "plaguing" them and affecting their ability to provide care to patients.




Over 7 Million U.S. Seniors Have Mental Declines
That Threaten Financial Skills

By Alan Mozes



As Americans age, millions end up struggling with dementia or some level of memory impairment and diminished capacity to think clearly and make decisions.

Yet a new study says that despite such serious challenges, many seniors continue to manage their own finances, often alone, and despite acknowledging difficulties in doing so.

“There has long been attention to the difficulty in making financial decisions faced by older adults with cognitive impairment,” noted study lead author Jing Li, an assistant professor in health economics at the University of Washington in Seattle. But her team was surprised by the high percentage — 75% or more — who appear to be managing their own finances nonetheless.




Biden is wrong. The pandemic isn't
Over for disabled Americans.

By Eric Garcia


President Joe Biden’s remarks on "60 Minutes" Sunday that “the pandemic is over” must have demoralized people with disabilities who had already experienced the awful sight of their fellow Americans gleefully celebrating no longer having to wear masks on airplanes. It feels like the work that people with disabilities did to make themselves heard before and during the pandemic was all for naught and that none of the conditions that led to the pandemic disproportionately killing disabled Americans has or will fundamentally change.

It feels like the work that people with disabilities did was all for naught.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, on the day the "60 Minutes" interview aired, the seven-day moving average for deaths from Covid-19 clocked in at 377. As of Friday, the NBC News Covid data dashboard was reporting 469 daily deaths, an average that was 18% higher than the average taken two weeks before.




More Older Adults Should Be
Checking Blood Pressure At Home

Reviewed by Emily Henderson


Only 48% of people age 50 to 80 who take blood pressure medications or have a health condition that's affected by hypertension regularly check their blood pressure at home or other places, a new study finds.

A somewhat higher number – but still only 62% -- say a health care provider encouraged them to perform such checks. Poll respondents whose providers had recommended they check their blood pressure at home were three and a half times more likely to do so than those who didn't recall getting such a recommendation.

The findings underscore the importance of exploring the reasons why at-risk patients aren't checking their blood pressure, and why providers aren't recommending they check -- as well as finding ways to prompt more people with these health conditions to check their blood pressure regularly. This could play an important role in helping patients live longer and maintain heart and brain health, the study's authors say.


--------------------------------------------------special




Restaurant Apps for
Free Food


There may be such a thing as a free lunch after all — at least at restaurants with their own apps​. One of the biggest perks of downloading the app for your favorite restaurant is that it can often get you access to freebies — everything from a free drink or appetizer to a free entrée or dessert. You can find apps for dozens of fast-food restaurants, casual dining chains and even some local restaurants.

“You don’t have to spend a ton to earn the freebies,” says Julie Ramhold, a consumer analyst with DealNews, a comparison-shopping website. Those freebies can help you maximize your dining budget, especially as inflation has pushed the cost of dining out up by 8 percent over the past year.

The rewards requirements for each app are different, but you can expect to get some freebies simply for downloading certain apps, while others require you to spend a certain amount over time. Others offer extras on your birthday. Look for a link to download an app on a restaurant’s website, or check the app store on your smartphone. These apps are free, and you’ll typically need to set up a username and password to get started.

Learn more  >> CLICK HERE

 






One would think a place that is designated as a healthcare facility would, at the very least, serve healthy meals. Or, that residents interested in losing weight (or gaining weight) could do so. But that is not the case here at the A.L.F, and many other long-term healthcare venues. And the chances of the situation improving soon are not bright.
 
As the official food critic for TheSeniorLog, I have been critical of the service, quantity, and quality of the meals served here for a number of years. I believe we (residents) need to eat food befitting of people our age. It’s as much a matter of respect as it is about nourishment. And this place has been disappointing in regards to both. They serve food here that is not only an insult to us, but unhealthy as well.


Let me preface what I am about to say with this. THIS FACILITY MEETS ALL THE REQUIREMNETS SET FORTH BY THE NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH REGARDING THE QUANTITY OF CARBS, PROTEIN ETC. PUT ON THE PLATE.

Unfortunately, the DOH only requires the minimum quantities of each food group, (3ounces of carbs, 4 ounces of protein, etc.) and not the maximum. And in that lies the problem. And, it’s a problem I have discussed with almost every food service director we have had here. The ratio of high calorie, high starch and high in carbohydrates food items to protein rich, lower carb foods has been lopsided for years.

Yes, they include at least 4 ounces of a protein item with each meal. However, they have no problem fulfilling the carbohydrate portion with two or three times the minimum required. It’s never the other way around. We have never been served a meal that has a larger portion of protein (eggs, beef, chicken, fish) versus pasta, potatoes, or rice. The rule here is to, not only fill us up, but to fill us out too.

Most of the blame for this proportionally lopsided combination results from budget tightening because of rising food prices and the increasing cost of un-reimbursed funds spent on COVID-related expenses. But part of the criticism must be placed on the DOH and their unscientific reporting method used to insure compliance with the MDR they mandate.
 
This is how they measure if we are being fed properly.
 
Once and month, every month, the facility is required to weigh each resident. In our place, they set up a scale in the lobby and have each resident stand on the scale and be weighed. Their weight is noted on a list which is sent to the DOH. The DOH compares the previous month(s) weight with the present weight. Any decrease in the total weight of the resident population is taken as a sign we are not being properly fed. Therefore, so as not to incur the ire of the all-seeing, all-knowing DOH, it is in the facility’s interest to keep us fat and happy (or at least fat). Never mind where the extra calories come from, or that any decline in weight may be because of the residents not eating the food just because it’s lousy. It’s easier (and cheaper) to pile on the pasta than to feed us something we’ll actually like.

To be fair, there are many residents who just don’t eat. Many of our older resident’s appetites have waned because of illness or medication or they just hate the food. But despite the reason, their (declining) weight becomes part of the stats and changes the curve. While many of us are actually getting fat, the non-eaters are screwing up the numbers for all of us.

The DOH has to change its reporting system as well as mandating a more realistic, and accurate, carbs-to-protein ratio. If not, the people who need to eat more will suffer and those of us who need to lose weight will have to have to keep buying larger and larger size pants……….....................…ff

 



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NEXT BLOG TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 27, 2022



©2022 Bruce Cooper


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SATURDAY & SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 24-25, 2022

Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com







Walking can lower risk of early death,
but there’s more to it than number of steps

By Sandee LaMotte




P
ut on your walking shoes and don’t forget your step counter: You can reduce your risk for cancer, heart disease and early death by getting up to 10,000 steps a day, but any amount of walking helps, according to a new study.

Just 2 minutes of walking after eating can help blood sugar, study says
Health benefits rose with every step, the study found, but peaked at 10,000 steps – after that the effects faded. Counting steps may be especially important for people who do unstructured, unplanned physical activity such as house work, gardening and dog walks.

“Notably, we detected an association between incidental steps (steps taken to go about daily life) and a lower risk of both cancer and heart disease,” noted study coauthor Borja del Pozo Cruz, an adjunct associate professor at the University of Southern Denmark in Odense, Denmark, and senior researcher in health sciences for the University of Cadiz in Spain.



10 Places That Should Be on
Your Bucket List in Your 50s

By KARON WARREN



As we reach our 50s, many of us find that we have more free time and disposable income, so why not put those resources to good use? Now is a great time to check off some of those destinations off your bucket list. If you don't have a bucket list, we can help. To get you started, consider these must-see places across the country from cities that will excite all your senses to beautiful scenic spots with breathtaking views and wildlife. If you've already been when you were younger, you may want to consider another visit with all your newfound wisdom.


10 Incredible Unspoiled Places You Must Visit

1Alaska

Denali National Park
It's no surprise that experiencing the natural beauty of Alaska tops many people's bucket list. From summer to winter, there's no shortage of breathtaking landscapes to explore, along with a wealth of wildlife viewing that's unrivaled by other states. Plus, if you visit Fairbanks between Aug. 21 and April 21 of each year, you're likely to catch the aurora borealis, also called the Northern Lights. That's a true bucket list item!

2Grand Canyon




When a Relationship is Complicated,
So Is the Grief Process

By Randi Mazzella



J
acalyn Wetzel, a writer and therapist from Mississippi, recently lost her father. Wetzel describes her relationship with her father as complicated, so it is not surprising that her emotions surrounding his passing are complicated, too.

Wetzel explains, "Growing up, I had a lot of resentment towards him. My dad made many missteps in his own life and his choices hurt me. When I was an adult, things started to turn around, especially in the last two years. He showed more often than not that he was trying to fill the cracks he had left from years before."

"Grief is even more complicated when everything between you wasn't rainbows and sunshine."

Losing a loved one is always hard. It doesn't matter if the relationship was good, difficult or a combination. Rebecca Soffer, who runs the website Modern Loss (and wrote a book of the same name), explains, "All people are fallible humans, in life and in death, too. We disagree with one another, we argue, and we don't always get along. But there is always a possibility to get it right when both people are alive. We lose that opportunity when someone dies. We lose the chance for closure."

Read more  >> CLICK HERE

 


Lorraine Bracco Gets Choked Up
Remembering Late Costars James Gandolfini

Tony Sirico and Ray Liotta



The Sopranos and Goodfellas actress says the deaths of three of her beloved costars has taught her to "live every day as well and as much" as possible
By Dory Jackson and Alexandra Schonfeld  

Lorraine Bracco still has late costars James Gandolfini, Tony Sirico and Ray Liotta on her mind.

Bracco joined Rachael Ray and her husband John Cusimano in commemorative cheers to the actress's late pals on Friday's episode of Rachael Ray Show.

"Let's make a toast to friends of yours, Ray Liotta and Tony Sirico," said Cusimano, 55.

"To Ray and Tony," echoed Ray, 54.

Bracco, 67, chimed in, "And to Jimmy Gandolfini."

"Oh, and Jim Gandolfini. Oh my God," Ray said as Bracco replied, "We can't forget Jim."

"Who could ever?" agreed Ray.

Bracco — who most notably starred with Gandolfini and Sirico in HBO's The Sopranos, and with Liotta in Martin Scorcese's 1990 film Goodfellas — opened up about how hard it's been to lose some of her closest friends and colleagues over the years.

"It's been a weird time," she began. "Look, Tony Sirico was older, and I get it. As sad as I am, I get it. But Ray and Jimmy?"




AI Portraits Imagine How Celebrities
Would Look If They Were Still Alive Today

By Sara Barnes




T
here are many celebrities who have unexpectedly passed away, long before they reached old age. You can’t help but wonder, what would they have looked like when they were older? Well, ponder no more. With the help of AI technology, photographer and lawyer Alper Yesiltas has created a series called As If Nothing Happened that seemingly brings pop culture icons back to life. Celebrities including Heath Ledger, Freddie Mercury, and Kurt Cobain have aged in a way that appears extremely believable. The generated portraits look like they recently sat to have their pictures taken.

Yesiltas is excited by the possibilities of artificial intelligence. With it, he believes that “anything imaginable can be shown real,” and it inspired him to start experimenting with it. “When I started tinkering with the technology,” he tells My Modern Met, “I saw what I could do and thought about what would make me the happiest: I wanted to see some of the people I missed again in front of me.” Thus, As If Nothing Happened was born.








Important Habits to Keep
Your Brain Healthy
By Sara Novak



O
ne in three senior citizens will develop dementia or Alzheimer’s Disease. But that doesn’t mean we all face serious cognitive decline due to aging. You can take steps to protect your cognition now and in the future. And in the meantime, taking care of your brain also means you’re more likely to enjoy better mental health — if you treat your brain well, it will do the same for you.

Diet is one of the most important things you can do to promote good brain health, says neurologist Reina Benabou. Most research shows that a Mediterranean diet in particular improves cognition. This includes ample fruits and vegetables as well as nuts, seeds, legumes, whole grains, fish, olives and olive oil, meats eaten in small portions and red wine in moderation. On the other hand, excessive alcohol is a “direct hit” to cognition, she says. Over time, drinking too much is one of the worst things you can do for brain health because it damages tissue and brain cells. It can also cause mental health issues like depression and anxiety.

Blood Flow to the Brain



What’s the secret to a good marriage?
Couple married 79 years have the answer

By Rachel Paula Abrahamson


An Ohio couple, who just celebrated their 79th wedding anniversary, are sharing the secret to their lasting love.

Hubert and June Malicote — they’re both turning 100 next month — have been married since they were 20 and said they have never had a quarrel. (Their 70-year-old daughter, Jo, backs up that claim!)

“We didn’t go through life without problems, but we would never do anything to hurt each other,” Hubert told TODAY Parents. The WWII Veteran said he learned early on that a quick time-out is an effective way to deescalate conflict.



Senior sex: Tips for older men
What you can do to maintain a healthy and
Enjoyable sex life as you grow older.



As you age, sex isn't the same as it was in your 20s — but it can still be enjoyable. Unlike some myths suggest, sex isn't just for the young. Many seniors still enjoy their sexuality into their 80s and beyond.

A healthy sex life is both fulfilling and good for other parts of your life too — such as your physical health and self-esteem.
Senior sex: What changes as men get older?

Changes to your body or lifestyle can make you feel vulnerable or uncomfortable — especially when it comes to sex.

You may notice changes such as:....




11 of the Easiest Ways to Protect
Your Retirement Money

By John Rampton

It's no secret that it's hard to plan for retirement. In addition to growing a sizeable nest egg, you must protect it from external factors like market volatility, inflation, and unforeseen expenses. And, to be brutally honest, that's been tough as of late.


Northwestern Mutual's 2022 Planning & Progress Study shows that personal savings are down 15% from $73,100 in 2021 to $62,086 in 2022. Moreover, 60% of American adults say the pandemic is "highly disruptive" to their finances.

In the midst of the pandemic, though, Americans saved around $2.5 trillion. Unfortunately, those cash reserves are drying up as people use them to deal with 40-year-high inflation. According to a Forbes Advisor survey, two-thirds of Americans are raiding their savings because goods and services are so darn expensive.



For older adults, hearing loss
And falls go hand in hand

By William Even, Au.D.



More than 1 in 3 Americans over age 65 will fall each year, according to the National Institute on Aging. In addition, approximately 1 in 3 individuals between 65 and 74 has hearing loss.  

Although these two statistics may not seem to share much in common, they are closely linked, said William Even, Au.D., a Faculty Associate and clinical audiologist in UT Southwestern’s Otolaryngology Clinic.

“It has long been known that some less common inner ear diseases can directly affect both hearing as well as balance,” said Dr. Even. “However, more recent research demonstrates a correlation between more common types of hearing loss and a risk of falls.”




Age discrimination may be taking toll
On health of older adults across U.S.

By Richard Payerchin


A new study found 93% of adults aged 50 to 80 years regularly experienced at least one of 10 forms of ageism, related to stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination related to old age, aging processes and older adults. Those who encountered it more often were more likely to report their physical health or mental health were fair or poor, they had more chronic health conditions, and they had symptoms of depression.

“The fact that our poll respondents who said they’d felt the most forms of ageism were also more likely to say their physical or mental health was fair or poor, or to have a chronic condition such as diabetes or heart disease, is something that needs more examination,” study coauthor Preeti Malani, MD, said in a news release.

The study, “Experiences of Everyday Ageism and the Health of Older U.S. Adults,” was published in JAMA Network Open. Researchers surveyed 2,035 people through the December 2019 National Poll on Healthy Aging of the University of Michigan’s Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation.

Read more  >> CLICK HERE  



You Can Have a Robot
Ror a Roommate



How technology may help people age at home and address
Worrisome forecasts of a shortage of caregivers

One of the most emotionally laden and difficult conversations a family can have involves what to do when an older relative can no longer live independently — at least not fully. Most of us want to keep our independence for as long as possible, while loved ones may be concerned about our ability to manage it safely.

These days, though, technology can make living alone safer. It serves as a bridge, a way out of the house, connecting to experts at the other side who are there to help. It also provides older adults with cyberpets and "cyber sidekicks" that battle loneliness without needing to be bathed or fed. The New York State Department of Aging was impressed enough by these devices that it announced it would start distributing them to older adults who are most in need.

Learn more  >>  CLICK HERE



Medicare could have saved $3 billion
Buying drugs the Mark Cuban way

By Hussain S. Lalani, Benjamin N. Rome, Aaron S. Kesselheim


Many of our patients struggle to afford their medicines, and it’s agonizing to have a front-row seat to this injustice. Despite politicians’ frequent promises to lower drug prices, Congress has failed to pass any meaningful reforms in decades. As different states experiment with their own solutions, one approach spearheaded by Mark Cuban, the billionaire owner of the Dallas Mavericks, has attracted growing attention.

The Mark Cuban Cost Plus Drugs Company, which launched online in January, promises lower prices and complete transparency about how those prices are set. This venture offers a welcome reprieve to some patients, but it does not address the root causes of high drug prices. For that, we need congressional action.

Cuban’s new company purchases hundreds of generic drugs from manufacturers and sells them online directly to consumers. Each generic drug is priced at a cost negotiated with the manufacturer plus a 15 percent markup, a $3 pharmacy dispensing fee and $5 for shipping. Remarkably, this sometimes adds up to substantially lower prices for many patients.




More seniors are using computers for entertainment
And some are gambling at Internet casino sites




The statistics show that a growing number of senior citizens are becoming tech savvy. Perhaps the isolation protocols of the pandemic have helped encourage the elderly set to accept computers as a means of keeping in touch with friends and relations and as a way to shop online.

The FandomSpot website, focused on Internet content, recently conducted a survey of 1,000 computer users aged 65-plus and found that most of them, 76%, go online because it helps to stimulate their brains. The poll also found that nearly half of those who took part in the survey had spent $500 or more on computer paraphernalia. As FandomSpot’s Alyssa Celatti told the New York Post, “Old people don’t just want to sit on the porch and watch leaves fall, they want to have fun. This study might even encourage more senior citizens to give gaming a go for some of the benefits cited by their peers.”

That’s all well and good, but there is a sinister side of online gaming when gaming is a synonym for gambling. Rethinking65.com, an online resource for financial advisors, warns that “As [online] gambling platforms multiply, some people in or near retirement might be tempted to roll the dice on their wealth accumulated over a lifetime. And financial advisors may find themselves on the front line of helping clients for whom casual gambling becomes a compulsion that could drain their savings.”




Why do more women get
Alzheimer's disease?

By Anna Guildford, Ph.D.


Alzheimer’s disease (AD) affects nearly twice as many women as men.
About 60% of people with AD don’t express apolipoprotein E (APOE ε4), its most established genetic risk factor.
New research has shown the MGMT gene may be associated with a higher risk of AD in two different populations, particularly in women without APOE ε4.
The study found that the expression of MGMT contributes to the development of toxic proteins associated with Alzheimer’s, especially in women.

AD is the most common form of dementia, a gradual condition that causes the brain to shrink and the cells to die. The condition affects a person’s ability to remember, think, and carry out simple tasks.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 5.8 millionTrusted Source people in the U.S. are living with AD and dementia, which is predicted to rise to nearly 14 millionTrusted Source by 2060.

AD is caused by the toxicTrusted Source buildup of amyloid proteins around the brain cells and tau proteins inside the brain cells.




Life can be ideal with independent living


Independent living in one’s own apartment can be a great choice for many older adults. Apartment life on a residential campus like UHS Senior Living at Ideal can help older persons achieve the goals they have set for themselves as they age.

The “Ideal Life” offers both freedom and security.

“Our residents are able to maintain their independence and enjoy the security and amenities that are all part of adult apartment living today,” said Jim Shadduck, administrator of Ideal.

Residents enjoy comfortable apartment living on the quiet, pleasant, top-of-the-hill campus on High Avenue in Endicott, he noted.




7 High-Return, Low-Risk
Investments for Retirees
By Matt Whittaker


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that life expectancy at age 65 for the U.S. population in 2020 was 18.8 years. This means that those who retire at the traditional age should be prepared to fund at least two more decades of living expenses.

Investing wisely can help supplement Social Security benefits. "Given low starting points of traditional bond yields, (retirees should) consider enhancing overall portfolio yields by looking outside of the bond market," says Christine Armstrong, executive director of wealth management at Morgan Stanley Wealth Management.

Keep in mind that high return and low risk tend to be oxymorons in investing. "Higher returns are generally achieved only by taking more risk, either in the form of more repayment risk, more volatility or more liquidity risk," says Scott Duba, chief investment officer and managing director of wealth management at Prime Capital Investment Advisors. So be sure you understand the features of any investment that purports to offer both high returns and low risk before investing.



Experts weigh in on addressing
Mental health in seniors, mothers

By Anastassia Gliadkovskaya


Before the COVID-19 pandemic, social isolation affected 1 in 4 older adults.


I
t's almost two years into the pandemic, and now it affects two out of three adults in general and two out of five low-income older adults, according to data from the AARP Foundation.

Depression in homebound older adults is up to three times higher compared to their peers who are not homebound. But they face many barriers including social determinants to receiving existing mental health services, like a lack of transportation to go to clinic-based therapy, explained Namkee Choi, Ph.D., professor and chair of gerontology at the University of Texas at Austin Steve Hicks School of Social Work, speaking at the recent Summit on Mental Health by the Association of Healthcare Journalists.

Most of these older adults rely on medications prescribed by a primary care physician, who is their main source of mental health care, Choi said. Yet antidepressants have limited efficacy, particularly among low-income homebound seniors, because of their inability to teach coping skills.



Over 50 and looking for a job?
Here’s what you need to know

By Cheryl Winokur Munk


With the bear market hitting retirement portfolios hard, bonds performing as poorly as stocks, and inflation raging, what seemed like a sure retirement income may be more of a pipe dream for many older Americans who had left the workforce, or planned to soon retire. The economic situation is sending more retirement-age workers back into the labor force. A recent CNBC survey found a majority of retirees would consider returning to work. But finding the right job isn’t always easy.

Many companies don’t offer the flexibility that many older workers want later in life. Age discrimination is another factor, with 78% of older workers claiming to have seen or experienced workplace age discrimination, according to 2021 data from AARP. That’s the highest level since 2003, when AARP began tracking the data.

Yet many companies are increasingly looking to attract mature workers, and with good reason. For one, the labor market is as tight as it’s been in decades and there are now two open jobs for every worker in the nation, and firms are struggling to recruit and retain talent. Research from employee scheduling company Homebase suggests that seniors are more engaged; more likely to look forward to work; more connected to their companies; and less likely to consider quitting. This makes older workers especially attractive in the currently tight labor market, said Jason Greenberg, head economist at Homebase.




Social Interactions Tied to
Sense of Purpose for Older Adults




Having positive social interactions is associated with older adults’ sense of purposefulness, which can fluctuate from day to day, according to research from the Department of Psychological & Brain Sciences in Arts & Sciences at Washington University in St. Louis.

And although these findings, published in the July 2022 issue of the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, apply to both working and retired adults, the research found that for better and for worse these interactions are more strongly correlated to purposefulness in people who are retired.

“Specifically for our retired older adults, this is a construct we should really care about,” said Gabrielle Pfund, who led the study as a Ph.D. student in the lab of Patrick Hill, associate professor of psychological and brain sciences. Pfund graduated in June and is now at Northwestern University.




How to Embrace Keeping
Your Hair Long After 50
By Juliana LaBianca


If there's one beauty myth that needs to be dispelled, it's that you have to cut your hair after 50. This myth originated for several reasons. As we age, our hair changes in texture and naturally thins, and many women find it easier to maintain at a shorter length. However, that doesn't have to be the case. If you'd prefer to keep your tumbling tresses, you absolutely can—all it takes are a few extra steps in your hair care routine. Here, professional hairstylists tell us the key ways to embrace long hair after 50 and keep it beautiful, shiny, and healthy.

The key to embracing long hair after 50 is making it look intentional and styled. You'll also want to ensure your strands frame your face in a flattering manner. An easy way to accomplish both is with face-framing layers.

"As we get older and things seem to start to droop, we want to keep the layers around the face so we can sweep up and away from the face to create the illusion of tighter skin," says Cody Renegar, an L.A.-based celebrity hairstylist whose clients include Gwyneth Paltrow and Marie Osmond. Bring the idea to your stylist and they'll be able to create a cut that suits your features best.



Estranged From Your Grandchildren?
There Might Be Hope
Experts offer advice for reconciliation when
The door is slammed shut

By Katherine Skiba


Grandparenting should be slurping ice cream, cheering at Saturday morning soccer games, and teaching a child to ride a bicycle, bake a cake or use a rod and reel. ​

But some people can’t enjoy these simple pleasures with their children’s children. They’re restricted when it comes to spending time with the kids. Children’s parents are the gatekeepers who decide how much access grandparents have to grandchildren, and sometimes family feuds mean that access gets limited.​

The impact on a banished grandparent can be loneliness, hurt, shame, blame and stigma from others who wonder what the older person did to “mess up [their] child,” says Megan Dolbin-MacNab, an associate professor at Virginia Tech who has studied grandparenting for more than 20 years and is a marriage and family therapist.​

Read more  >> CLICK HERE



Here’s How Much Seniors Actually
Spend on Health Care

By Karla Bowsher



I
t costs twice as much these days to fill up your gas tank. The grocery bill rises every week. Kids need new shoes? Break out another couple hundred bucks.

Your budget is bleeding, thanks to inflation. How to stanch that financial hemorrhage? Hint: You can’t do it with thrift alone.

Sure, being frugal helps. But you can’t coupon your way to solvency, and brown-bag lunches or bringing your own coffee can get you only so far in an era of inflation.




How to Tell a Good Assisted Living Facility
From an Awful One

By Jeff Somers


Whether we like it or not, we’re all getting older. In fact, according to the U.S. census, the country as a whole is getting older, and the population of adults over the age of 85 is estimated to triple in the next 20-30 years. So it’s not surprising that there are close to one million people residing in assisted living facilities in this country—a number sure to grow rapidly as the country continues to gray up.

Assisted living is a great option for a lot of families because they’re flexible experiences. If your older loved one just needs some care and assistance, they can still have a pretty independent life while being supported by trained professionals and having easy access to medical care. While researching and assessing the training and qualifications of the staff is one major aspect of choosing an assisted living facility, there’s also the question of the atmosphere and “vibe” of the place.

Assuming the staff and quality of care are up to snuff, how can you tell if an assisted living facility is right for your aging loved ones? The answer is surprisingly simple: Treat the selection process like you’re buying a house.




NEXT NEW BLOG MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 26, 2022


©2022 Bruce Cooper

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America’s age tipping point is approaching —
We’re totally unprepared

By Joseph Chamie



A
merica faces mounting old age challenges as growing numbers of individuals find themselves ill-prepared in terms of financial resources, personal health and social support for their remaining years of life.

The number of Americans aged 65 and older has increased to approximately 56 million, or 17 percent of the population, nearly double the 1960 level of 9 percent.  The majority, about 55 percent, are women, and among those 85 years and older, nearly two-thirds are women.

In 2030, America will experience a demographic turning point when all baby boomers will be older than 65. That will equal one out of five Americans. Also importantly, by 2034, those older than 65 are expected to outnumber children for the first time in U.S. history.



Senior healthcare advocates applaud
House passage of MA prior authorization bill

By Marissa Plescia



Several senior healthcare advocates are coming out in support of the House of Representatives’ Wednesday decision to pass a prior authorization reformation bill for Medicare Advantage plans.

The bill, HR 3173, establishes three requirements: Medicare Advantage (MA) plans must create an electronic prior authorization program that meets certain standards, such as provide real-time decisions for requests on routine services; publish prior authorization information each year, including the percentage of approved requests and the average response time; and meet quality and timeliness standards of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services for prior authorization.

The prior authorization process determines if a payer will cover a healthcare service. It has been deemed by many as a time-consuming roadblock to accessing care. Almost all MA enrollees, or 99%, are in plans that require prior authorization for some services, a recent report by the Kaiser Family Foundation found.




OHSU experts caution older adults
On increasing rates of dangerous falls

By Erik Robinson

One of the biggest causes of traumatic injuries treated at Oregon Health & Science University involves people, usually older, toppling over on level ground.

Known as ground-level falls, this form of injury accounted for almost 19% of all patients treated for trauma at OHSU Hospital in 2021. OHSU has seen a sharp increase in ground-level falls over the past five years. Even though it may not sound as dangerous as other leading causes of trauma — gunshots, stabbings, motor vehicle crashes — this seemingly innocuous mishap is actually the second leading cause of unintentional injury deaths worldwide.

The reason: An aging population that’s more susceptible to falls. Many of these injuries can be life-threatening and life-altering, often due to underlying medical conditions exacerbated by the impact.



Senior doctor wants to protect
Older adults from polypharmacy


It’s safe to say Americans take a lot of prescription medications. And herbal supplements. And over-the-counter (OTC) drugs. And while few studies have looked at the effects of polypharmacy—taking five or more medications concurrently—on health-related quality of life and psychological distress in patients with chronic disease and multimorbidity, we do know that, as recently as 2019, more than one-fifth of U.S. adults 40–79 had taken five or more medications in the previous 30 days.

For one physician, the evidence of polypharmacy has been around for years.

“In my clinical practice, I have been amazed by the number of medications—and OTC meds and herbs—that some of my patients have in their possession, and I suspect that is true for the majority of practicing physicians,” said Tom James III, MD, a board-certified internist and pediatrician in Louisville, Kentucky. “I have admitted more patients than I would like who’d had adverse drug events, frequently due to their confusion over all their medicines.”


________________________________special



6 Stylist Secrets for
Stunning White Hair
By Juliana LaBianca



S
ay goodbye to frizz, discoloration, and dullness.

Everyone's hair grows out gray differently. For some, it skews more charcoal, while others find lighter gray in multiple shades. But there are also people who bypass gray or gradually grow into white hair. Like embracing grays, going fully white is low maintenance in the sense that you'll have no more routine trips to the salon for color, touch-ups, and highlights. However, white strands have their own challenges. Because they lack pigment, they're more susceptible to discoloration, whether that's from hard water or pollution. They're also prone to dryness and brittleness, and may not be as shiny as fully pigmented strands. But fear not—those challenges are fixable. Here, stylists tell us the secrets to attaining stunning white hair. No trip to the salon is needed.


You're likely used to choosing a shampoo based on your hair type. For example, opting for a volumizing or anti-frizz formula. But if your strands are white, you'll want to choose something that can add moisture.







If you are an old codger like me, you will remember when we had regular “duck and cover” drills in our schools. The duck-and-cover campaign remained a standard response to potential nuclear attack throughout the 1950s and into the ‘60s. Eventually, it waned, however, partly because of thaws in U.S.-Soviet relations. Now, it appears, those old cold war fears are heating up. But, unlike the 1950s and 60s when we had a hard-line old Bolshevik seated in the Kremlin, Vlad “We are not bluffing” Putin is not Nikita Khrushchev.

Unlike Khrushchev, who remembered the horrors Russia suffered during the Second World War and did not want a repeat, Putin is willing and able to put his nation at risk. And, unlike Nikita, who realized his reign as premier would end someday, Vlad would like to remain in power forever.

In 1962. Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev had gambled on sending missiles to Cuba with the specific goal of increasing his nation’s nuclear strike capability. The Soviets had long felt uneasy about the number of nuclear weapons that were targeted at them from sites in Western Europe and Turkey, and they saw the deployment of missiles in Cuba as a way to level the playing field. Another key factor in the Soviet missile scheme was the hostile relationship between the U.S. and Cuba. The Kennedy administration had already launched one attack on the island–the failed Bay of Pigs invasion in 1961–and Castro and Khrushchev saw the missiles as a means of deterring further U.S. aggression.Following this news, many people feared the world was on the brink of nuclear war. However, disaster was avoided when the U.S. agreed to Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev’s (1894-1971) offer to remove the Cuban missiles in exchange for the U.S. promising not to invade Cuba. Kennedy also secretly agreed to remove U.S. missiles from Turkey.[1] That was the closest we came to nuclear war, until now.

Today, we are dealing with a whole new animal, Vladimir Putin. Unlike Khrushchev, he’s cold and calculating. And unbending. However, he’s not an idiot. He knows full well that any nuclear attack in Ukraine would trigger action-in-kind from us. He also knows there would be no winner in that conflict. The problem I have with Putin is, does he care? Or is he someone who will risk nuclear war just to satisfy his need for power?  

What would a nuclear attack mean for us old folks? Like everything else, we would be the first to go. We can’t run. We can’t hide and we certainly can’t crawl under a desk, as if that would have done any good, anyway.
 
As a baby boomer child of the 50s, I grew up with the threat of nuclear war. However, deep down inside, we always believed cooler heads would prevail, on both sides, and war would be averted. Now, with the world as it is, a world where a group of wackos have no problem killing others, and themselves, by crashing a jetliner into buildings, I’m not so sure.

The consensus among experts is, Putin will never allow or admit to defeat in Ukraine. He might accept some concessions, however. That depends on the resolve of Ukrainian president Zelenskyy and the Ukrainian people. There is one other factor to be considered, the Russian people who appear to have no interest in fighting in Ukraine or Putin. So much so, they are leaving the country in droves out of fear of being drafted into the army. Something the Russians have not done since WW2.
 
Since the fall of the Soviet Union, Russians are enjoying here-to-fore unheard of freedoms. They like their cars, the well-stocked shelves, Kentucky Fried Chicken and the ability to travel as they please.This new turn of events will be as much of a test of the West’s influence there as it is a test of Putin’s power. Hopefully, the chicken wins and Vlad will back off. But I’m still nervous…..........….
 
[1] source: https://www.history.com/topics/cold-war/cuban-missile-crisis








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NEXT BLOG SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 24, 2022



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THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2022

Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com









4 Common Medications That Spike
Your Risk of Falling, Pharmacists Say

By Lauren Gray


A
s you age, your risk of falling increases—as does your risk of suffering a serious injury as a result. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in four seniors—a total of 36 million people—fall each year. Sadly, this leads to over 32,000 deaths annually.

"These falls can be related to multiple factors, but are often associated with medications that can affect balance and coordination," says Mary Cait Smith, PharmD, a clinical pharmacist at The University of Toledo Medical Center in Toledo, Ohio. "The risk of experiencing a fall related to a medication increases with age and the number of medications taken," Smith tells Best Life. Read on to learn four medications that spike your risk of falling, and how to stay safe if you take them.

Many people require daily medication to keep their high blood pressure under control. However, Smith warns that certain blood pressure medications can increase your risk of falling.



Legislation would create national advisory
Commission on long-term care services

By Kathleen Steele Gaivin


Legislation introduced Thursday by Sens. John Boozman (R-AR) and Jacky Rosen (D-NV) would establish a national advisory commission on long-term care services for older adults and others who need care and long-term support.

Under the Supporting Our Seniors Act, the commission would assess and provide regular reports to Congress on service delivery, financing, workforce adequacy and other issues to increase older adults’ access to affordable long-term care services. The commission would include government and private-sector stakeholders along with family caregivers, home healthcare workforce representatives and long-term care service recipients.

“Establishing a national advisory commission will help us better prepare for future challenges including coordinating services, training a workforce to meet seniors’ and individuals’ with disabilities needs and providing information and options to empower them and their caregivers with the resources available,” Boozman said in a press release.




Seven Common Medicare
Mistakes to Avoid

By Ryan Kocher



There are currently 3,834 Medicare Advantage plans, 766 Part D Prescription Drug Plans (PDP) and a host of carriers offering Medicare Supplemental plans. Those numbers are expected to rise in 2023, but eight is the number that matters to me. That's the number of Medicare-eligible customers in my family who will be sifting through their options to pick a plan. While I do my best to support their decisions, it can be challenging, even for someone who works in the industry every day.

Enrolling in Medicare can be complex and confusing to anyone, but especially for those who are new to the program. If you don't do your homework, you can end up with a health insurance plan that doesn't fit your needs or one that is too costly.

As the Medicare Annual Election Period (AEP) approaches this fall, it's not too soon to start evaluating your options and asking the right questions. When I'm giving advice to my family members about choosing a Medicare plan, I warn them about these common mistakes that some people make.

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE



Older Americans Regret Not Caring for
Their Teeth More in Youth



Americans aged 50 and older realize the importance of oral health but aren’t necessarily taking the steps to prioritize it as they should, finds Delta Dental’s Senior Oral Health Report: Older Americans’ Oral Care Regrets, Barriers, and Impact. Eighty percent of older Americans don’t go to the dentist as often as recommended today despite ranking “not brushing and flossing more” as their third biggest regret regarding their physical health.

Our ability to smile and not feel judged by others has a significant impact on our social well-being.

The study reveals that two in five (40%) smile less compared to when they were younger due to deteriorating oral health or the appearance of their teeth.

Generally, there’s a lack of understanding between the connection of oral health to our overall health among older Americans. Two in three (66%) have never discussed their dental visits or oral health with their primary care provider and more than half (55%) say they never discussed their general health or current medications with their dentist. These are critical gaps as physical, mental and oral health treatment become more integrated to reflect the connections among body, mind, and mouth.



Vitamin D, Fish Oil Won't
Help Elderly Stay Strong

By Cara Murez


I
f only you could pop vitamin D and fish oil supplements to fight the frailty that often comes with aging, but new research delivers a disappointing message: Don't count on it.

In reaching that conclusion, the team used data from the VITAL study (Vitamin D and Omega-3 Trial), which included information from over 25,000 U.S. adults. Using questionnaires taken before the trial, six months after its start and annually through five years of follow-up, as well as frailty assessments, the researchers found the supplements made little difference.

The investigators studied the supplements in many different subgroups, including those whose vitamin D levels were low, those with and without healthy diets, and men and women, noted study author Dr. Ariela Orkaby. She is a geriatrician in the division of aging at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.


 ______________________________special



Older and Wiser: Ageism
Can do real harm to seniors

By Margaret Coates


We all can do more to counteract ageist attitudes about the capabilities of seniors, writes columnist Margaret Coates

What do you think about ageism?

As I have been aging, I wonder a lot about people’s views on growing older and, more significantly, I worry about people’s negative attitudes towards older people.

The World Health Organization defines ageism as “the stereotypes (how we think), prejudice (how we feel) and discrimination (how we act) towards others or oneself based on age.” On the WHO’s website, they say ageism is rife in our society. They recently reported that one in two people are ageist when it comes to older people. Unfortunately, this includes seniors themselves who have internalized stereotypes about older people.










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NEXT BLOG FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 23, 2022



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WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 2022

Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com









Oldest boomers aren’t looking for
Their parents’ senior living

By Kimberly Bonvissuto


S
enior living providers looking to entice tomorrow’s residents should forget about John Wayne and Bing Crosby and think about Pink and Madonna instead.

That’s according to a panel of senior living experts who addressed differences between today’s Silent Generation resident and tomorrow’s baby boomer consumer during a Thursday discussion at the 2022 National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care Fall Conference.

Understanding the market

Senior housing communities live and die by their local market areas, according to NIC MAP Vision CEO Arrick Morton. It’s imperative, he added, for operators to understand not only who is in that market, but who is a potential customer.



Will a Senior Living Facility Cost
Your Kids an Inheritance?

By Rick Kahler



One popular money script is, “I need to leave an inheritance to my kids.” Yet choices that parents make based on this money script can result in both failing to leave an inheritance and even costing children money. Here is one way that might happen.

My town is home to a senior living retirement community that provides care for an individual or couple in all stages of retirement, including independent living, assisted living, and nursing home care. The cost for a couple includes a one-time, non-refundable fee from $100,000 to $300,000, depending on the size of the unit selected, ranging from studio apartments to townhomes. There is also a monthly stipend that varies with the services provided, typically between $1,500 to $3,500. Fees for assisted living and nursing care are higher. As health declines and the needs for more services arise, a resident can access these services.

However, one can’t wait until a health crisis to move into



5 Jobs Where Employers
Usually Hire Senior Citizens

By A. A. Francis


Even though we live in a world where forced retirement and ageism are a reality, it doesn’t mean that middle-aged and elderly people have no employment options.

There are plenty of jobs that employers explicitly set aside or target older workers for hire.

Here are five of those jobs.

Platonic activity companions

In the 21st century, there is a booming industry for platonic companions to give company to elderly, disabled, socially awkward, and lonely people.

As an activity companion, you may be tasked with playing board games with people in an assisted living facility. Or you may go to a live event to keep someone company. And you may even be able to do a lot of your work online and keep people company via video links.




Billions of dollars stolen every year
In senior scams, FBI says

By Brian Roche



The FBI's most recent elder fraud report showed that cybercrime costs Americans over the age of 50 nearly $3 billion last year. That was an increase of 62 percent from the previous year."One of the heartbreaking parts of my jobs of monitoring scams is the occasional conversations I have with adult children, who just found that their elderly parents have been scammed," WGAL Consumer Reporter Brian Roche said.The nearly $3 billion number from the FBI could be much higher because the same report shows that seniors are also less likely to report fraud.The Federal Trade Commission says 44% of younger people, who are in their 20s, reported losing money to fraud. Only 20% of those in their 70s did the same.Seniors may be too embarrassed to report the loss for fear of losing their financial independence.

The elder fraud report shows that the older a person is, the greater the financial loss in a scam.Pennsylvania ranks seventh in the country in the number of total victims and sixth in the country with reported losses of $77 million.Top scams targeting seniorsRoche said these are the top three scams targeting senior citizens:Computer tech scams.Romance scams.Grandparent scam."Many people who I have talked to about their senior parents being scammed say they wish they had talked with their parents about ways to protect themselves from scams," Roche said.You can find tips on talking to your older parents on scams here.Related:

Last year, Brian spoke to a woman who lost hundreds of thousands of dollars to the romance scam. You can watch that story here.


____________________________special

When You Can’t Sleep:
How to Treat Insomnia

By Moira LawlerMedically


Y
ou lie awake at night staring at the ceiling. You feel like you’re cursed — but you’re not alone. Experts estimate that between 1 in 10 and 1 in 3 people suffer from some degree of insomnia, meaning they have trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, or wake up earlier than they intend to in the morning (or a combination of the above).

There are many reasons why you might be struggling to fall asleep or stay asleep through the night, including stressful life events (such as getting fired from a job) and health issues. What’s more, those periods of short-term insomnia that last just a few days or a week (acute insomnia), can turn into longer-term insomnia, which is known as chronic insomnia, meaning your sleep troubles last beyond the initial stressor.

But you don't have to suffer through short- or long-term insomnia, and you shouldn't. Lifestyle changes, therapies, and other treatments do exist to retrain your mind and body to get the sleep you need to stay not only happy but healthy, too.







It’s difficult to talk about the end of summer when the trees are still green and the temperature is in the 80s. However, as of Thursday, September 22, at 9:04 P.M. EDT in the Northern Hemisphere, fall 2022 will be upon us.
 
Fall, for me, has always been the best time of the year. For many, the cooler temperatures and the falling leaves signals an end to things. I look at this season as just a lull in the action. The flowers, trees , your lawn, do not die in fall. They just go off and take a nap. It’s a time to recharge the batteries, rest your legs and not try to do something all the time.
 
As a kid, you looked at fall as a new start, even if you might not have been aware of it. While sad to see summer go, kids look forward to all the possibilities that lay ahead. New school, new teachers, new friends and a chance to start with a clean slate. Somehow, as we age, we forget all that and focus on the cold months ahead.

Sadly, summer was as usual. I say “sadly” because this summer was the same as the two summers before.

I had hoped to see the end of “mask wearing” here. We have been living with this COVID thing for much too long. Having to “mask-up” every time we step out of our rooms is becoming tiresome and serves as a constant reminder that we (seniors) are particularly vulnerable to a virus many others think has disappeared. While vaccination and mask mandates have been lifted practically everywhere and for everyone, for us, CIOVID is very much alive and well, and dangerous.[1]
 
Budget cuts took their toll this summer. Activities available to residents were scaled back, leaving many of us bored. Even the two barbecues this season were a bomb. What should have been a lot of fun was just blah. While we are discussing food, nothing has improved. If anything, it may be worse. Repetitive menus, lack of cooking skills and an “I don’t care” attitude make mealtimes more of a chore than a pleasant social event it should be.

I have some hopes and wishes for the season ahead.  
 
The government needs to get its act together and reimburse long-term care facilities for all the money spent on PPE and other infection control measures. We urgently need this money to operate in such a manner to provide vital services for residents, as well as improving the quality of life that has been going downhill for two years.

Staffing may be the number one issue here. The ability to recruit and keep qualified personnel needs to be addressed. Working with the elderly has to be made more attractive to job seekers. Why would somebody want to work here when they can earn more working somewhere else, with less pressure?
 
Finally, I would like to see some attitude adjustment. There have been too many conflicts among residents which results in dissension, which adds to the gloom and feeling of hopelessness for many of us who are looking for a little peace in our later years.
 
As the colors change from green to red and gold, and the winds cause the leaves to fall from their branches, I hope we look upon this as an opportunity to make a change. Change that will afford us a better life than what has been dealt us………………..
 

[1] Fortunately, the number of cases of COVID here has been kept to the minimum, and severity. The few residents affected (me included) have been able to ride it out, safely, in our rooms. This is due mainly to all of us having received all the available vaccinations and booster. Another booster will be administered soon.









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TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 20, 2022

Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com









Kiss Your 10.1% Social Security
Raise Goodbye in 2023

By Sean Williams


More than 48 million Americans received a retired worker benefit from Social Security in July.  The vast majority of these recipients -- 89%, according to an April survey from national pollster Gallup -- are reliant on the program to make ends meet during retirement.

It's a similar story for America's huge labor force. When Gallup surveyed nonretirees earlier this year, a whopping 84% expected their Social Security benefit to be a "major" or "minor" source of income during their golden years.

The point being that Social Security is, or will be, an indispensable source of income for most Americans. That's what makes the program's annual cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) announcement during the second week of October so important. This year's announcement is slated for release on Oct. 13 at 8:30 a.m. ET.




High rents outpace federal disability payments,
Leaving many homeless

By Fred Clasen-Kelly


After two months of sleeping in the Salvation Army Center of Hope homeless shelter in Charlotte, N.C., Margaret Davis has had no luck finding an apartment she can afford.

The 55-year-old grandmother receives about $750 a month from the federal government. She's trying to live on just $50 cash and $150 in food stamps each month so she can save enough for a place to call home.

Davis is homeless even though she receives funds from the Supplemental Security Income program, a hard-to-get federal benefit that was created nearly 50 years ago to lift Americans who are older, blind or disabled out of poverty — whether or not they have a work history that qualifies them for the Social Security Disability Insurance program, which may pay more.




Who's still dying from COVID-19?
Hundreds of Americans daily

By Emily Alpert Reyes, Aida Ylanan


R
oshan Kalghatgi was shocked when his 73-year-old mother tested positive for the coronavirus in July, nearly 2½ years into the pandemic.

“I thought it was a fluke,” the Redwood City resident said. “I made them do it again.”

His mother, Manisha, had eluded the virus at a Pennsylvania assisted living facility as COVID-19 devastated group facilities for the elderly. She had avoided infection again when she flew across the country to join Roshan and his family in San Mateo County, where she would tickle her 4-year-old grandson and faithfully follow his repeated requests to show him her belly button.

She had been vaccinated against COVID and received booster shots as well, Roshan said. By July, COVID wasn’t the top threat to Manisha on his mind: His mother had been struggling with kidney disease and Roshan fretted about how to keep her going to dialysis, which she had abandoned even as Roshan agonized about what it would mean for her health.




63% of Americans Have Less
Than $50K in Retirement Savings

By Gabrielle Olya


How much you need to have saved for retirement depends on your age and your individual circumstances, but even taking this into consideration, most Americans are not where they need to be. A recent GOBankingRates survey found that most Americans have less than $50,000 saved for retirement — the majority (36%) have less than $10,000 saved and an additional 27% have between $10,000 and $50,000.

Retirement at Any Age: Get Top Retirement Tips for Every Stage of Life
Find Out: 7 Surprisingly Easy Ways To Reach Your Retirement Goals

Here’s a look at how much Americans typically have saved at every age, and what to do to catch up if you’re behind where you need to be.

The Majority of Americans of All Ages Have Less Than $10K in Retirement Savings

One would hope that older Americans are much less likely to have $10,000 or less in retirement savings than younger folks, but this, unfortunately, is not the case. The survey found that the majority of Americans fall into this savings range, regardless of age. However, the percentage is slightly less for seniors than for other age groups.






New York City isn’t ready for
Its aging population

By Crystal Hudson



Our city’s affordability crisis knows no bounds. Its effects are not only unquestionably tangible today but also a harbinger of crises to come. Presently, skyrocketing rents undermine the health and wellbeing of our communities, forcing scores of long-time residents out of the neighborhoods they’ve long called home and making our city uninhabitable for the millions of poor and working class, Black and Brown New Yorkers continually pushed into the margins of society.

But have you considered the effects this crisis has on older New Yorkers — those living on a fixed income, those with mobility limitations or chronic illness, those living close to the loved ones that care for them, or those who simply want to age in place in the comfort of their own homes?

According to a report by national non-profit legal advocacy organization Justice in Aging, “older adults are at the center of the nation’s housing affordability and homelessness crisis.”










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NEXT BLOG WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 2022



©2022 Bruce Cooper

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MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 19, 2022

Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com










‘The lifeboat is leaking’: Many seniors still at risk of
Financial drowning’ even as Social Security could 
Get biggest boost in 40 years


Americans are still feeling the squeeze of higher prices, but today’s rampant inflation also means retirees could soon benefit from the highest boost to Social Security in over four decades.

The average Social Security benefit is currently $1,656, and for many seniors, this monthly check is their only source of income. With budgets straining, older Americans are anxiously awaiting the announcement of 2023’s cost-of-living adjustment (COLA).

Well over half of all older households do not have savings to fall back on, says Mary Johnson, Social Security and Medicare policy analyst at advocacy group The Senior Citizens League.

“About 90% or more of their income is coming from Social Security alone,” Johnson explains.



What Medicare Premiums Mean 
For the Social Security COLA
By Andy Markowitz


Social Security recipients in line for the biggest cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) in more than 40 years may get an additional hedge against inflation in 2023 — a smaller-than-usual change in the Medicare Part B premiums that are deducted directly from millions of older Americans’ monthly benefits.

Or, perhaps, no change at all.

“I’m betting on zero,” says Alicia Munnell, director of the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, of the prospective 2023 Part B premium rate increase.

Next year’s premium won’t be known for certain until the fall, when the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will announce the 2023 rates. Munnell’s prediction is based on assessments CMS issued in the wake of 2022’s record-high hike 

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE


Alzheimer’s Disease Risk 50–80% Higher
In Older Adults Who Caught COVID-19


According to a large, new study, older people who were infected with COVID-19 show a substantially higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease within a year.

Older people who had a COVID-19 infection show a considerably higher risk—as much as 50% to 80% higher than a control group—of developing Alzheimer’s disease within a year. This is according to a new research study of more than 6 million patients aged 65 and older.

Researchers report that people 65 and older who contracted COVID-19 were substantially more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease in the year following their COVID diagnosis. Furthermore, the highest risk was observed in women at least 85 years old. The study was published on September 13, 2022, in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, 





Many older adults may not get the intensive 
Blood pressure treatment they need
By Thor Christensen


Fewer than 30% of older adults who need more intensive treatment for high blood pressure actually get it, new research shows. And the problem may be worsening.

Nearly half of U.S. adults – about 116 million people – have high blood pressure, also known as hypertension. When not properly controlled, it can lead to serious health problems, including heart attack, stroke and kidney disease.

"We haven't been doing well, despite robust evidence demonstrating the strong benefits of good blood pressure control in older adults," said Dr. Nicholas Chiu, the study's lead author and a clinical fellow at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. "This is a major public health gap that needs to be tackled."




 
Inflation 2022: 
How To Make Ends Meet When
Social Security Is No Longer Enough


Those who recently retired may feel some financial pinching from the current high inflation rates and rising cost of living expenses. Even those with moderate savings and diversified portfolios may come to a realization their retirement benefits aren’t enough.
Don’t panic. Despite challenging financial fluctuations in the economy, retirees have several options available to help them stay afloat. Try making the following changes if you find retirement benefits aren’t enough to cover your needs.

Delay Claiming Social Security 

Retirees do not need to retire from work and collect Social Security benefits at the same time. Carefully decide when you want to start claiming Social Security. Retirees may work alongside a financial advisor to determine, based on their financial situation and existing needs, if it’s better to start claiming these benefits early or to delay it until the full retirement age.








Social Security was never meant to be a person’s sole income in retirement. Supposedly, an individual would have amassed a certain amount of wealth, either from savings, inheritance, real estate or investments, and pensions to get them through the ten to fifteen years of post-employment life. And, whatever Social Security they received would be there to supplement those funds to give retirees a better life. A reward, if you will, for working all those years. That was the plan. But, who could have imagined, back in 1935, that so many people would live until they were 80 or 90 or more and that the cost of everyday living would far outpace what savings (or Social Security) could provide.

Every citizen, working or retired, has fallen victim to the rise in food costs, transportation, utility, and energy prices. But inflation has hit people on fixed incomes the hardest. That means elderly folks are in the worst shape, financially, then any other group in America. Simply, we have no way of improving our status. Especially if you are a middle class senior living independently. You have only two options. Either you go back to work at some minimum wage (part time job), or divest yourself of most of your net worth and claim poverty. Some choice, huh?

For us folks, living at the A.L.F., poverty is the order of the day. Practically everyone here relies solely on multiple forms of government help to provide a dignified, though basic, way of life.
 
Medicare provides for our medicines, treatments, tests, doctor’s visits, and hospitalization. Medicaid, which is state run, gives us our eye glasses, mobility items (walkers, canes, wheelchairs) physical therapy and transportation to and from doctors. But Medicaid provides something else. And it’s the reason I’m able to have a roof over my head and food in my belly.
 
Assisted living, whether at an upscale facility with all the amenities of a luxury spa, or one that provides a minimum of extras, is expensive. Six to eight thousand dollars per month is the norm. Even our bare-bones facility would run you about five grand. How can I afford that when my sole source of income is less than $1500 per month from Social Security? One word, “supplement.”

The facility takes mostly all of my Social Security benefit for room and board. [1] The rest of my rent is paid for by Medicaid. We are one of the few places in NY State that accepts Medicaid as a way of paying for one’s stay here. It’s unique and I’m blessed to have found it. I never could afford the level of care I get here any other way. But this did not come without a price. And a hefty one indeed. In order for me to be eligible for the Medicaid supplement, I had to divest myself of all of my net worth save $1500. And, I have to maintain that level every month I am here. If I don’t, the facility can take more of my Social Security benefit, leaving me with almost nothing extra to live on. Therefore, each month, I do a juggling act. On one hand, I have my “surplus” from my Social Security, and on the other, I must keep my bank balance under $1500. That means I need to spend money to save money. But not too much money or I’ll have nothing left for some essentials.

The proposed COLA for 2023 is anywhere between 8.7 and 9.3 per cent. That would give me an extra $140 (approx.) every month. The facility may raise my rent by 9% of that $140, leaving me with about $128 extra to spend. Spend on what? Food, mostly. That extra cash will mean a respite from the dull, tasteless, boring meals they serve us. I’ll be able to get takeout more than once a month and I can order some additional items from Instacart. It also means I can stock up on essentials like toiletries, socks and clothes. I haven’t bought new clothes in over a year and I could use some pants and shirts. And maybe there will be a few bucks left over to subscribe to an additional streaming channel via ROKU. As regular cable TV becomes more like broadcast TV, I’ve turned to Netflix and Amazon for entertainment.

So, when someone asks “How I can manage living entirely on Social Security,” I tell them, “it’s easy, just get poor and learn to live simply.” It’s not for everybody, but it suites me just fine……………………
 
[1] The few dollars left over goes into a non-interest bearing resident’s account from which I can withdraw cash.







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Proven Strategies to Stop 
Overthinking And Ease Anxiety Now
By Elaine K. Howley and 
Anna Medaris Miller


What if I said the wrong thing? How will I ever finish the assignment in time? Why aren't they responding to my text? Thoughts like these make us human, says Julie Pike, a clinical psychologist in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. “That’s what the brain is designed to do – to think our way out of problems and away from predators,” she says.


“However, we often find ourselves stuck in a spiral of predicting, playing out different scenarios and often catastrophizing,” says Sophie Lazarus, a psychologist at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus.

“As strange as it sounds, in the short term, this overthinking can give us a false sense of relief or the illusion of control. However, in the long term, this habit can have real costs to our well-being and engagement in our lives,” she notes.




The 4 Most Expensive Medications 
You Can Be Prescribed
By LAUREN GRAY


Expensive prescription medications can wreak havoc on your wallet, and prices are on the rise. In fact, according to a report from the AARP's Public Policy Institute which looked at drug pricing from 2016 to 2020, "the average annual increases in the retail prices of widely used brand name prescription drugs have consistently exceeded the general inflation rate since at least 2006."

These skyrocketing prices come right back to consumers, even when insurance companies pick up the bulk of the tab. "Brand name drug price increases translate into higher out-of-pocket costs, especially for consumers who pay a percentage of drug costs (coinsurance) rather than a fixed dollar amount (copayment). Higher prices can also be passed along to consumers in the form of higher cost sharing, deductibles, and premiums," says the AARP report. For patients with rare diseases, these drugs often come with staggering price tags that few can afford.

Read on to learn the four priciest medications you can be prescribed, in order of least to most expensive—and be prepared for sticker shock.




Should You Lend Money 
To Family or Friends?
By Lazetta Rainey Braxton


In these tight times marked by high inflation and a debated recession, many households feel cash-strapped and squeezed by escalating expenses and interest rates. The first line of defense for many of them involves asking family and friends for money to stay afloat.

A family having a discussion about whether or not to lend money. Next Avenue, lending money to family, friends
Money conversations are challenging even for the most secure relationships, and your new role as a lender requires you to be comfortable asking pertinent questions   |  Credit: Getty
As a financial planner, I have witnessed many of my fellow first-generation wealth builders and sandwich-generation wealth protectors face the precarious decision of whether or not to lend money to family members and friends.

Money F.O.G. (fear, obligation and guilt) and pulled heartstrings cloud their judgement as they contemplate the lending decision. They toggle from wanting to lend money and get loved ones back on their feet to having difficulty trusting someone already in debt.

Read more >>  CLICK HERE



2022's Best & Worst 
Places to Retire
By Adam McCann



After putting in decades of hard work, we naturally expect to have financial security in our golden years. But not all Americans can look forward to a relaxing retirement. According to the Employee Benefit Research Institute’s 2022 Retirement Confidence Survey, 7 in 10 workers reported feeling at least somewhat confident that they will have enough money to retire comfortably, but fewer than 3 in 10 said they were “very confident.”

If so many American workers are worried about their financial future, what other options provide a pathway to a comfortable retirement? For some, the only solution is to keep working. According to Gallup polling, workers in 2021 planned to retire at age 64 on average, compared to age 60 in 1995. The alternative? Relocate to an area where you can stretch your dollar without sacrificing your lifestyle.

Retirement isn’t all about the money, though. Retirees want to live in a place where they enjoy safety and access to good healthcare, especially in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The ideal city will also have lots of ways to spend leisure time, along with good weather.





7 Hacks for Flying With Just a Carry-On,
No Matter How Long Your Trip Is
By ABBY REINHARD


Packing can be overwhelming no matter where you're going, but it's especially stressful when you're prepping for an extended vacation or one where you'll need different outfit options. Many of us have a tendency to overpack, which makes the process that much more burdensome. You might prefer to check a bag or two to make sure you can take everything you need, but given long waits at baggage claim and the number of lost bags skyrocketing, you should consider swapping your larger bag for a smaller carry-on. Even if you think there's absolutely no way you could pack for a two-week trip with such a petite piece of luggage, travel experts insist it can be done. Read on to find out the seven hacks they recommend for flying with just a carry-on, no matter how long you're going away.


1Invest in packing cubes.

Packing cubes are all the rage these days. Not only do they keep you organized when packing—they also simplify unpacking.

"Packing cubes allow me to organize my clothes in neat cubes that fit snugly in my carry-on," Suzanne Casamento, author and digital nomad, tells Best Life. "Cubes are labeled with a shirt or pant icon so I know exactly what's in each cube. [They] zip up and allow me to squeeze much more into my carry-on than what fits if I pack 'normally.'"








Seven Myths About Older Adults:


Many of our long-held preconceived notions about senior citizens are simply not true. In fact, for many people entering older adulthood, a new take on life is just beginning. People are working longer than ever, so for those entering their golden years, they may be finally enjoying retirement or an empty nest. It can be difficult to communicate with seniors if you’re starting with an incorrect perspective. Let’s explore some myths about older adults.

Myth 1: Slower pace = lower capacity


While age does affect the speed at which we process information, it does not necessarily diminish our ability to reason, manage information, or make decisions.

Myth 2: Logic = sense





Average assisted living rate tops $51,000 per year 
As pandemic effects still felt across industry


The effects of the pandemic are still being felt across assisted living, with operators showing a second consecutive downward trend in rates in some areas, according to the results of a new report.

The Lincoln Financial What Care Costs analysis released Wednesday found that assisted living rates now average more than $51,000 annually.

Assisted living operators nationwide in 2021 charged average monthly rates ranging from $4,299 for a studio apartment (compared with $4,162 in 2020) to $5,084 for a two-bedroom apartment (compared to $5,224 in 2020), with pricing varying greatly based on geographic location.




Tips for Navigating the Health Care System


A veteran medical practitioner and administrator offers advice on dealing with America’s confounding medicine-insurance complex

The American health care system is complicated, difficult to navigate and can kill you if you aren't prepared, proactive and knowledgeable. From finding good doctors to being able to afford medication, the hurdles can feel insurmountable.

So says David Wilcox, who has spent nearly 30 years working in various capacities in hospitals and recently wrote a guide for patients, "How to Avoid Being a Victim of the American Healthcare System."

Learn more  >> CLICK HERE  


After record rate hike this year, 
Medicare Part B could see a 
Low premium increase for 2023


While Medicare Part B monthly premiums jumped almost 15% in 2022, unexpected savings on a new, expensive drug may mean a much smaller rise in rates for 2023.

Part B premiums rose by $21.60 – the largest real dollar year-over-year increase in the history of Medicare – to $170.10 per month for 2022, thanks in part to the high cost of Aduhelm, a newly-approved intravenous drug for Alzheiemer’s disease. However, at the end of 2021 after premiums were locked in, Biogen, the new drug’s manufacturer, essentially halved the price of the treatment. That savings could go toward lowering next year’s rate hike, according to a new report from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

It’s still too early to tell for certain what next year’s premium will be, as Medicare premiums are generally announced during the fall of the preceding year. (The rate increase for 2022 wasn’t announced until the second week of November 2021.) An early clue, however, is President Biden’s proposed 2023 fiscal year budget, which lists Part B premiums as remaining at the same rate as 2022. This is not in any way a final determination, but the money saved from Aduhelm’s lower price could be rolled over into next year’s pricing.



Seniors with prediabetes should eat better, 
Get moving, but not fret too much
By Judith Graham


Almost half of older adults — more than 26 million people 65 and older — have prediabetes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

But how concerned should they be?

Not very, say some experts.

Prediabetes — a term that refers to above-normal but not extremely high blood sugar levels — isn’t a disease, and it doesn’t imply that older adults who have it will inevitably develop Type 2 diabetes, experts say.

“For most older patients, the chance of progressing from prediabetes to diabetes is not that high,” said Dr. Robert Lash, chief medical officer of the Endocrine Society, commenting on recent research. “Yet labeling people with prediabetes may make them worried and anxious.”




Why You Bruise More Easily as You Age 
And What to Do About It 
By  Marygrace Taylor


Bruises develop when the impact from an injury causes small blood vessels near the skin's surface, called capillaries, to break. The broken capillaries cause bleeding under the skin, which shows up as a bruise, according to the Mayo Clinic. The bruise fades as the blood from the broken capillaries gets reabsorbed into the body — a process that typically takes a week or two.

Here's a look at why bruises become more common with age, plus what you can do to keep the bumps at bay.

Why Do Older People Bruise More Easily?

Older adults have physiological differences that make them more prone to bruising, but lifestyle factors can play a role too.




Tips For Older Adults Buying 
A New Car In Today’s Market
By Mindy Charski


Kyla Moles has purchased many cars in her life, but her latest quest for a vehicle felt more like a competition than a shopping expedition. "It was a harrowing experience," says the 53-year-old office manager and mom of three. Her more than seven-month attempt to buy a new 2022 Hyundai Palisade finally ended in March when she drove off a dealer's lot that is more than two hours away from her home in Dallas.

The distress came in many forms. Among them: Though she's known for her haggling skills, Moles discovered she had little leverage. Dealers of a different brand pressured her to purchase a used vehicle for more than the price of a new one. She spent hours searching the online inventories of dealerships throughout Texas and Oklahoma.

Moles's frustrating journey can be traced to a nationwide problem: Demand for automobiles is outpacing supply, which is strained by the global shortage of semiconductor chips. Sales of new vehicles during the first quarter of 2022 were the lowest in a decade, according to the research firm Cox Automotive.



If You’re Too Old for an Internship, 
Try a Returnship Instead
By Arianne Cohen


When he’s not hanging out in his Santa Monica home or exploring remote corners of California, Chris Emhardt can be found surveying voting sites and installing the hardware needed to ensure local elections take place smoothly. In 2019 he retired from a four-decade career in similar work at media companies and had planned to simply take it easy and travel. But he’s back on the job and loving it. Two years ago he got a three-week election project, then a two-month gig, then a half-year. “The difference is I’m not trying to build or advance my career,” the 65-year-old says. He loves that he can just do what’s asked of him and head home at the end of the day—though he says he finds so much purpose in bolstering public elections that he regularly logs more than 40 hours a week. “I don’t mind going 110% for a month,” Emhardt says. “But I wouldn’t want to do that as a full-time job.”



What behavioral changes can tell us 
About cognitive decline in older adults


Personality or behavioral changes could be signs of mental illness, like depression or bipolar disorder, but new research points out that differences in behavior could also be tied to cognitive decline. 

A recent study specifically found behavioral changes in men – such as having false beliefs and a lack of enthusiasm later in life – were associated with a risk of faster cognitive decline compared to women. 

According to Byron Creese, PhD, co-author of the study, behavioral changes were also defined as mild behavioral impairment (MBI) in the study. MBI describes a syndrome that can be made up of a combination of symptoms, including apathy or social withdrawal, changes in mood and anxiety, being more impulsive than usual, being socially inappropriate and having false beliefs or hallucinations. 




Aging process: 
Restoring sense of control

Thanks to breakthroughs in medicine and nutrition in recent years, we are living longer than ever before. But this increase in life expectancy also brings an increase in the number of diseases, injuries and impairments that affect older adults. With this in mind, we at the local Visiting Angels office in Salem have created this series of articles to keep our older population and their families informed and to offer some practical advice for meeting the challenges faced by seniors and those who care for them.

As people grow older the physical limitations which are often a part of the aging process can affect their ability to maintain their lifestyles as they once did. This loss of mobility or motor function, coupled with negative cultural attitudes toward aging, can sometimes rob seniors of their dignity and cause them to feel powerless over their own lives.

While there may be little that seniors and their loved ones can do to alter the aging process, there are ways to restore a sense of control and help older adults retain their dignity as they journey through their golden years.




What do elder law attorneys do?

Most seniors need legal advice at some point in their lives, and many of their legal issues require certain expertise.

While many lawyers focus on a specific area of the law – such as copyright, family law or criminal law – elder law attorneys focus on one specific segment of the population: older adults. The major areas of elder law are disability and special needs planning, long-term care planning, estate planning and settlement, guardianships and conservatorships, and elder abuse. Legal issues elder law attorneys may also handle include:  

    Estate planning
    Social Security benefits
    Medicare and Medicaid issues
    Long-term care arrangements
    Employment age discrimination.....




Mediterranean diet may 
Reduce chance of frailty


A new study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition has found that consuming a Mediterranean-style diet may prevent frailty. Defined as a recognizable state of increased vulnerability resulting from a decline in function across multiple physiological systems, frailty affects 10–15% older adults, and leads to other health issues. Although the general benefits of a Mediterranean-style diet are well known, its role in the reduction of frailty in older Americans who do not normally consume such a diet was unclear.

The study titled "Adherence to the Mediterranean-style diet and high intake of total carotenoids reduces the odds of frailty over 11 years in older adults: Results from the Framingham Offspring Study," showed that consuming a Mediterranean-style diet may prevent the development of frailty with aging. The study included 2,384 non-frail adults from the Framingham Offspring Study with Mediterranean-style dietary pattern score and antioxidant intakes [vitamin C, E, and total carotenoids] estimated from a food frequency questionnaire combined with frailty assessments that were conducted over ~11 years. Each unit higher score on the Mediterranean Style Dietary Pattern Score (i.e., higher adherence to a Mediterranean-style diet) reduced the odds of frailty by 3%.




Friends at first sniff: 
People drawn to others 
Who smell like them


Friends at first sniff: People drawn to others who smell like them
We smell each other's body odor, volatile molecules, and in same sex dyads, similar body odor predicts friendship. There is actual chemistry in social chemistry. Credit: Weizmann Institute of Science

It's often said that people who click right away share "chemistry."

This expression could be true in the literal sense, according to a new study published in the journal Science Advances on Friday, which finds people with similar body odors are more likely to hit it off as friends.

"Nonhuman terrestrial mammals constantly sniff themselves and each other and, based on this, decide who is friend or foe," wrote a group of researchers led by Inbal Ravreby at Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel.

Since people seek friends who are similar to themselves, the team hypothesized that humans may smell themselves and others to subconsciously estimate body odor similarity and judge their compatibility.




Washington leaders agree Social Security needs to be fixed — 
But proposed tax increases are a key sticking point
By Lorie Konish


Congressional leaders can agree on one thing — Social Security needs to be fixed before the program’s funds are unable to pay full benefits in 2035.

But that is where the consensus ends.

Leaders from both the Republican and Democratic parties have each recently discussed the issue on Capitol Hill.

That was prompted in part by the release of the annual Social Security trustees report, which included the new projected 2035 date for when the program’s combined funds will become depleted. At that point, 80% of benefits will be payable.




Age Magnificently with the Help 
Of a Geriatric Care Manager
By Joel Theisen, RN


Geriatric care managers help families map the coming changes and explore the options before they are even needed.

It can happen in an instant. One day your dad is living on his own, independent and mostly healthy despite advancing age. The next he’s in bed with a broken something, dependent on his grown children and forced to move into a long-term care facility because you don’t have time to research alternatives. I’m not exaggerating when I say I’ve seen it happen hundreds of times. 

Dad can’t avoid the getting older part, at least not if he’s lucky. But it’s not inevitable that he’ll have to give up his home, whether it’s an actual house or an apartment in a senior building. That’s why it’s so important to be proactive rather than reactive, and to find a professional who can help you and your father (or mother) figure out how to remain at home as long as possible, even if injury or illness comes into play. The benefits of staying at home can be both economical and psychological. 



Back to Basics, Continued—
Elder Abuse and Elder Fraud 

Several years ago, I blogged about the prevalence of elder abuse and the efforts of the CFPB to mitigate such abuse. See What to Do When We Suspect Elder Financial Abuse. A related topic to elder abuse is fraud upon the elderly. It seems that the Pandemic has only exacerbated both of these problems. 

Sam Hall studies elder fraud. His report, that he has graciously allowed me to use in preparing this blog can be found at The Elder Fraud Report Revisited - NiceRx. Sam may be reached at https://www.nicerx.com/ or directly at sam@digitaloft.co.uk. 

Elder fraud takes many forms. The most costly economic loss to elders is based upon “confidence fraud” often growing out of “romance.” Reports show that seniors who have been targeted for this type of fraud lose on the average of $56,000. Not surprisingly, this type of fraud is most prevalent in California and Florida, where a significant percentage of senior citizens reside. 

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE


The New Social Security 
Trustees Report
By Allison Bell


Social Security will keep paying retirement benefits in 2035, even if its trust fund empties out, but the cut in the amount would be huge.

That’s the assessment of Alicia Munnell, director of the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College.

Munnell, one of the top academic retirement researchers in the world, says Social Security should receive enough payroll tax revenue to pay 80% of the currently promised benefits from current income in 2035, and about 74% of the promised benefits in 2096.

But the replacement rate, or the percentage of pre-retirement earnings provided by Social Security benefits, would fall off a cliff.

Today, the typical replacement rate is 38%.

In 2035, if Congress fails to act, the replacement rate will plunge to 27%, Munnell warns.



IRA rollovers often come with higher investment fees.
Here’s how much money that costs retirement savers
By Greg Iacurci


IRA rollovers — transfers from 401(k) plans to individual retirement accounts — are a common financial move when workers switch jobs or retire. But rollover IRAs can cost Americans billions of dollars in extra fees over decades, according to a study issued Thursday by The Pew Charitable Trusts, a nonprofit research organization.

The dynamic is due to the lower annual fees for mutual funds generally available to 401(k) savers relative to costs incurred by IRA investors.

“Even small disparities in fees can lead to big reductions in savings,” according to John Scott, who directs Pew’s retirement savings project.
IRA rollovers are common for job switchers, retirees

Investors rolled $516.7 billion from workplace plans into traditional IRAs in 2018, the latest year for which data is available. That’s nearly 28 times more money than as contributed to traditional IRAs that year.




Senior living workforce, affordable housing priorities 
Included in House appropriations proposal


Workforce development, dementia care and affordable senior housing are among the funding priorities affecting senior living included in the proposed House appropriations bill.

Argentum and LeadingAge applauded the reports accompanying the fiscal year 2023 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education and Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development funding bills. The House Appropriations Committee held a markup hearing on the FY23 appropriations bill Thursday. 

“On workforce alone, this appropriations outline will help bring more people into the profession where staffing challenges have affected communities far and wide,” Argentum President and CEO James Balda said. “More seniors will need assisted care than ever before, but Argentum projects that the workforce shortages in the near future will be at catastrophic levels if more is not done.” 




Exercise Can Cut All Sorts of 
Health Risks for Seniors.
Here's How to Get Going.
By Neal Templin

The CDC's recommendation on weekly exercise can be achieved by going to the gym twice a week and going on 30-minute walks on the other five days.
Marek Uliasz/Dreamstime.com

Imagine a medicine that reduced the death rate of breast cancer and risk of recurrent breast cancer by 50%, lowered the risks of colon cancer and type 2 diabetes by two-thirds, and those of heart disease, hypertension and Alzheimer’s disease by 40%. On top of that it can be as effective as antidepressants or cognitive behavioral therapy in countering depression.

That medicine exists, says Dr. Edward Laskowski of the Mayo Clinic: It’s called exercise.

“Movement is medicine,” says Dr. Laskowski, a specialist in physical medicine and rehabilitation who says the health benefits he cites have been proven repeatedly by high-quality research.




Heat, air pollution
A deadly mix for older adults
By Steven Reinberg


On days when both heat and air pollutions were high, the risk of dying from heart conditions jumped nearly 30%, and the risk of dying from respiratory problems increased by 38%, a recent study found. Photo by David Mark/Pixabay

Heat coupled with smog can be a particularly lethal mix, especially for older adults, a new study finds.

Unfortunately, both hot temperatures and air pollution are going to increase as the planet warms, and so will deaths, researchers report. 





NEXT NEW BLOG MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 19, 2022




©2022 Bruce Cooper

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FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2022

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Average Assisted Living Resident Manages 
More Than 14 Chronic Conditions
By Tim Regan


A new study is shedding light on the number of chronic conditions the average senior living resident manages, and how much it costs them annually.

The average older adult residing in either a senior living community or nursing home manages about a dozen or more chronic conditions such as asthma, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes, according to a new analysis from NORC at the University of Chicago.

For assisted living residents specifically, the average is more than 14 chronic conditions.




Few Americans plan to delay 
Collecting Social Security 
By Margarida Correia




Even though 86% of Americans know that delaying Social Security to age 70 would dramatically increase their monthly benefit, only 11% plan to do so, according to the third installment of the Schroders 2022 U.S. Retirement Survey released Tuesday.

Almost one-third (31%) of the 1,000 investors surveyed said they would not wait until 70 to claim the maximum possible benefit because they expected to need the money sooner. In fact, almost half (48%) said they would claim their monthly benefit before hitting their full retirement age.

Joel Schiffman, Schroders' head of strategic partnerships, bemoaned the low uptake on delaying Social Security benefits to age 70. "If only 11% are maximizing their Social Security checks, almost 90% are leaving much-needed retirement income on the table," Mr. Schiffman said.



4 Medications That Will Make 
You Sick Without Food
By Luisa Colón



Grabbing a meal or a snack can help you avoid some unpleasant side effects.


How you take your medication can be just as important as the drug itself. For example, did you know that taking your cold medicine with a particular beverage can actually make it work faster? Or that certain over-the-counter (OTC) drugs should never be taken together? The directions for taking meds vary depending on the drug in question, and range from avoiding pill organizers to only taking them at a specific time of day.

Failing to follow your doctor's instructions can have serious consequences. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) explains the possible side effects of not taking your medications: "All medicines, both prescription and over-the-counter, have risks as well as benefits," their experts write. "Risks could be less serious things, such as an upset stomach, or more serious things, such as liver damage." Taking your meds correctly can help reduce the risk of certain side effects.

One common instruction is to take drugs with food, or run the risk of experiencing nausea or other forms of gastrointestinal distress. Read on for four medications you should never take on an empty stomach.




Why Can't I Eat Grapefruit? 
Foods That Interact with Medications
By Rosie Wolf Williams



Pirates ensured they had plenty of citrus fruits like limes and grapefruits onboard for their journeys. But if you are taking medication, these fruits might be a problem. Why? Some foods and herbal supplements can affect how prescription medications work in your body. They could even eliminate the effect of another drug or cause side effects.

A photo collage of a grapefruit with various prescription medications. Next Avenue, Food medication interactions 19th edition
Some foods and herbal supplements can affect how prescription medications work in your body. They could even eliminate the effect of another drug or cause side effects.

However, the opposite is true – some medications can cause your body to absorb and use foods differently. According to Robert Alesiani, chief pharmacotherapy officer at Tabula Rasa HealthCare in New Jersey, "both delays in activation or elimination of a medication due to competitive inhibition can lead to a variety of adverse drug events, from poor or lack of response to a drug to risk of accidental overdose."

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE




Planning To Retire on a Cruise Ship?
 Here’s How Much It Costs



Many individuals are planning to set sail as part of their target retirement lifestyle, but not necessarily through short-term options like spending weekends on a boat. Some retirees plan to retire aboard a cruise ship.

Embracing life as a long-term cruiser does offer some benefits including the ability to sail around the world and receive discounts through loyalty programs offered through cruise lines. But for all the convenience, is it more aspirational or impractical to retire on a cruise ship?

Here’s what the financial feasibility of retiring at sea looks like.

What It Costs To Retire on a Cruise Ship.....









You might think, because I’m a resident of an assisted living facility and receive 3 meals a day as part of my room and board, the rising cost of everything, including food, does not affect me. Well, it does.
 
Putting your ignorance aside, we suffer the price of inflation as much as anybody. Although the money might not be taken directly out of our pockets, we pay for it at almost every meal as cheaper, poorer quality food, smaller portions, and lack of variety. So much so that many of us have taken to going outside the gates for some of our meals, me included. Unfortunately, when we do this, we are as vulnerable to rising prices as much as anyone. Maybe more so.
 
Unlike other elders of limited means, we residents are not eligible for food stamps or any other federal, state, or local food assistance program. Therefore, everything we buy at the local market is at full price. A painful experience as you well know.

While you are chuckling to yourself and thinking, “Welcome to the real world,” remember we live on a limited income, one that has not kept up with inflation for many years. Since ,many of us have limited transportation options, we are forced to use one of the online shopping services like Instacart, Fresh Direct or Amazon Fresh which have the added expense of higher prices, delivery charges and less selection. Perhaps, one day, they will invent a way to “virtually” squeeze the pears and sniff the melons. Until then, we have to rely on others to select an item for us. 

In order to endure life here at the Asylum, I use one of those online services to provide a respite from the drudgery of some of the food served to us. Yesterday, I placed my order on Amazon. Over the years, I have used many of the services. Most recently, Instacart, which is the best for the ability to connect with the shopper, and very good service. However, Instacart is expensive. The fees and extra charges add up. So, I switched to Amazon, which does not charge any delivery fee (with orders over $35) and whose prices compete with those at the store. They offer same-day service and have an app that allows you to track the driver. But, as everywhere, these giant retailers are victims of “foodflation” too. Look at what I received for my $77 (see photo).

Three bags. That’s it. Not long ago, $77 would have filled an entire shopping cart with food. I won’t list the individual items I bought other than to say they are all food items (no toiletries, beer or soda, ice cream, Cheetos or dog food). There are items that can be cooked in a microwave or eaten as is. Among them are baked beans, chili, American cheese, hot dogs, pasta, and some tomato juice. Some are “store brands” which save money, but even those are not cheap. 

I don’t have any economic expertise. They tell us rising prices are the fault of higher labor and transportation costs caused by everything from climate change to COVID. Some of that may be true. But the real reason for all this misery, in my opinion, is greed. It still takes a human to decide how much they’ll charge for an item. From the people who supply the farmers to the cereal company who packs your cornflakes in a box (and the guy who makes the box), it takes a person to add up the numbers. And, when given a good excuse to raise prices, they will take it. Some day, gas prices will be back to pre-inflation levels and COVID will be like the flu. Will the prices come down?. Some, but they know, once we get used to paying for something, especially something we need, we will continue to pay for it no matter what the price. I can hear those cash registers. Cha-Ching, cha-Ching……………………….









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NEXT BLOG SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 17, 2022



©2022 Bruce Cooper


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THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 2022

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3 in 4 Americans over 55 admit that their 
Social circle has shrunk as they’ve gotten older 
By Vanessa Mangru


The average American over 55 has just four friends they can count on, according to new research.

A new survey found that of 2,000 Americans aged 55 and older, a fifth feel lonely more than half the week (19%).

Three in four admit that their social circle has shrunk as they’ve gotten older (77%), with nearly half of respondents (48%) sharing that they’ve stopped being friends with at least three people in the last two years alone.

However, the survey conducted by OnePoll for Life Time found that 83% feel it’s never too late in life to create fulfilling relationships.

In their elder years, people want to focus on spending their time with friends and family (52%), traveling (40%) and improving their overall health (39%).




Failing to Update Your Medicare Information 
Could Prove Costly 
By Christina Kuta



The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) requires Medicare providers and suppliers to keep their enrollment information up to date at all times. Changes in this information can affect claims processing, payment amounts and eligibility to participate in the Medicare program. Failing to report changes in information in accordance with CMS requirements has serious consequences, including revocation of Medicare billing privileges.

What needs to be reported to CMS and when?

Requirements differ based on provider and supplier type. Physicians, non-physician practitioners, and physician and non-physician practitioner organizations are required to report any change of ownership, adverse legal action or change in practice location within 30 days of the reportable event. Any other changes in enrollment need to be reported within 90 days of the reportable event. Other changes that must be reported include any information that differs from the initial enrollment application (or last information reported to CMS if information already has been updated subsequent to the initial enrollment application), which can include, for example, changes in managing employees, the provider’s organizational structure, or the provider’s correspondence mailing address.

These changes can easily be reported online through PECOS, the online Medicare enrollment management system, or by completing the appropriate CMS-855 form and mailing it to the designated Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC). Your MAC may request additional documentation, and such documentation must be provided within 30 days of the request date.

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE



Older adults with regular activity routines 
Are happier and do better on cognitive tests


Older adults who consistently get up early and remain active throughout the day are happier and perform better on cognitive tests than those with irregular activity patterns, according to a new study led by University of Pittsburgh researchers.

The findings, published online in JAMA Psychiatry, suggest that patterns of activity—not just activity intensity—are important for healthy aging and mental health.

"There's something about getting going early, staying active all day and following the same routine each day that seems to be protecting older adults," said lead author Stephen Smagula, Ph.D., assistant professor of psychiatry and epidemiology at Pitt. "What's exciting about these findings is that activity patterns are under voluntary control, which means that making intentional changes to one's daily routine could improve health and wellness." 




6 Clever Ways to Make 
Your Home Elderly-Friendly
By Rashmi Haralalka


Joint families are usually the norm in our country. However, the elderly have special needs when it comes to daily life. A few tweaks to the furniture layout and some sensible architectural choices can ensure that your living environment is convenient for the older and less physically able persons in the family. Here are some practical tips to help you create a safe and comfortable home for your ageing relatives.

1. Mind the traffic flow

Rearrange your living room layout to make space for the seniors to move around without knocking over or bumping into furniture. Opt for clean, clutter-free layouts that ensure comfortable thoroughfare. Here, an L-shaped sofa and round centre-table are cleverly spaced to allow free passage and yet maintain an elegant living room layout. A smaller portable table stands close to the sofa, and doesn’t interrupt the traffic flow in the rest of the space.






Five Reasons to Move to Assisted Living




Stay independent longer


A lot of times when people think about assisted living, they feel as though they are losing their independence, but in the long run they may be preserving it for much longer. Getting extra assistance earlier in life helps people to continue the activities they love for much longer. Having more people around can help prevent a devastating fall, or major medical issue from taking years of independence away. At Somerset Court with our highly trained nursing staff and emergency pendants we can help all our residents stay healthy, safe, and active well into their later years. I’ve heard it said many times after residents move in; “I only wish I would have done it sooner”.

Socialize

Assisted living provides an active community life for people to participate in and enjoy. No more long winters at home alone. Those North Dakota winters don’t feel so long when you have good company and can stay busy. Socialization also helps keep the brain sharp and emotions high. 










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NEXT BLOG FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2022



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WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 14, 2022

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While inflation takes a toll on U.S. seniors, 
Billions of dollars in benefits go unused
By Judith Graham


Millions of older adults are having trouble making ends meet, especially during these inflationary times. Yet many don't realize help is available, and some notable programs that offer financial assistance are underused.

A few examples: Nearly 14 million adults age 60 or older qualify for aid from the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (also known as food stamps) but haven't signed up, according to recent estimates.

Also, more than 3 million adults 65 or older are eligible but not enrolled in Medicare Savings Programs, which pay for Medicare premiums and cost sharing. And 30% to 45% of seniors may be missing out on help from the Medicare Part D Low-Income Subsidy program, which covers plan premiums and cost sharing and lowers the cost of prescription drugs.




Having a hard time standing up 
Could signal heart disease in seniors
By Jocelyn Solis-Moreira



Older adults who suddenly find themselves struggling to get out of a chair may want to see a doctor right away. A new study finds people with low physical function after age 65 are at a greater risk for heart problems.

Apart from traditional heart risk factors, such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol, researchers with the American Heart Association found adults who performed poorly on a physical function test were at a higher risk for future heart attack, stroke, and heart failure.

The Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB) is a measure of physical function, giving a score based on a person’s walking speed, speed of rising from a chair without using your hands, and standing balance. It is separate from tests evaluating physical fitness.




Iron deficiency anemia among older adults 
Weakens muscles, doubles the risk of death
By John Anderer



Taking iron supplements not only benefits people with anemia, but it may also prevent a life-threatening loss of muscle mass among older people.

A team from the Federal University of São Carlos in Brazil and University College London reports that suffering anemia and weak muscles at the same time can significantly increase the risk of death among older adults. The study shows this combination increases an older man’s risk of dying by 64 percent and by an astounding 117 percent among older women.

Anemia, which is a condition where people lack enough healthy red blood cells, contributes to a 58-percent higher chance of dying among men. Meanwhile, loss of muscle strength (dynapenia) is an even bigger risk factor for women, increasing mortality risk by 68 percent. However, study authors stress that the two conditions together pose even greater risks, particularly for elderly women.




Benefits of THC Water for Seniors
By Adam Sands



Until just a few decades ago, the therapeutic uses for cannabis were virtually unknown. Researchers were not allowed to study its potential applications, and the plant had a reputation for being a fringe drug used by people who just wanted to get high. Thankfully, all that has changed in the 21st century, and now, people of all ages and from all backgrounds are taking advantage of the therapeutic benefits of THC.

What Is THC Water?

Most Americans have heard of THC, short for tetrahydrocannabinol. It’s one of the best-known cannabinoids found in marijuana. THC is the primary psychoactive component of marijuana, but it’s also much more than that. Researchers have been finding that THC may also help with everything from severe pain to nausea, and can even provide relief for patients suffering from epilepsy.

Find out which CBD product is best for you

The least safe part of consuming THC in traditional ways is the fact that it requires smoking marijuana. Thankfully, there are now healthier and more effective ways for people to take advantage of the cannabis plant’s therapeutic compounds. One great option is trying out THC water, a product made from sparkling water infused with delta-8 tetrahydrocannabinol.






Data from home sensors detect 
Health risks in older adults
By Liza Berger



Connected sensors that remotely monitor health at home are a promising way to capture a range of health data on older adults and identify health risks early, a new study has found. 

Investigators from the University of Bern in Switzerland were able to create an “extensive collection” of digital measures from older study participants based on information gathered from contactless sensors placed throughout the home.

The system used motion sensors in each room, a bed sensor under the mattress, and door sensors on the front door and refrigerator. These were connected to a base station which analyzes motion signals. The system is able to alert caregivers or an alarm center when problems arise, such as when a person does not return to bed at night.







AT THE A.L.F.



At first, a 24 x 12 foot space may seem like plenty of room for a single person to live in. However, when you take away 1/4 of that space for the bathroom and clothes closet, the 288 (approx.) square foot space leaves one to wonder, “How do I live here?” That’s the question I asked myself yesterday morning as I set out to breakfast. As I closed the door to my room, the guy who lives opposite me was opening his. A quick glance inside said it all. The key to making small spaces work is downsizing. And the key to downsizing is learning to part with stuff. Not always an easy task.

Evidently, my neighbor (despite he has lived here for years) cannot get rid of anything. One look into his sanctum sanctorum and it became apparent, everything this guy owns (and perhaps, ever owned) was in that room. And it’s not only him. Many, if not most, of our residents come here with far too much personal items. And I’m not speaking of clothes or photos. I’ve observed new residents, with the help of friends and relatives, move in with furniture. Not just a chair or an end table, but love seats, chest-of-drawers, bookcases and even a potted palm. Did they not see the room they were getting before they came here?

Every room here comes equipped with one bed (twin size). One chest-of-drawers, one night table (with lamp) and a small pedestal table with straight-back chair. Each room has its own bathroom and a small clothes closet. In addition, there is a sink with an overhead cabinet. That’s it. The rest is up to you to decorate. But there is not much room left for amenities. A small (office-type) refrigerator is one item, and a TV of course. I would recommend as a necessity, along with an additional table (if you use a desktop or laptop computer)  an etagere-style open- shelf bookcase. Some rooms have space for a recliner and many of the ladies have a movable wardrobe for their clothes. It’s a sparse lifestyle, but as long as you stick to the basics, it’s doable. Unfortunately, while leaving some of the furniture behind may be easy, leaving behind memories is tougher. And some just can’t let go. 

Keepsakes, like trophies, abject d’art, your late husband’s golf clubs or your rock collection, will no longer fit your new way of living. The facility will store some stuff for you, but there is a limit. And, if they find you have too many “memories” in your space, they will have them removed for safety reasons. Not being able to get out of your room because you are tripping over boxes of shoes and stuffed animals is dangerous.

I had an apartment full of stuff. Four rooms of things my mom had collected over the years, along with my stuff. My beloved stereo and music collection and boxes of CDs containing the thousands of photos I took. I left that all behind. And I don’t miss any of it. My life had changed so drastically over such a short period that making a new start, free of my past, became my goal.
 
Over the years, I have added a few items. All of which don’t take up any floor space. A goose-neck lamp and an extra shelf in my bathroom. The rest is what I moved in here with nine years ago. Am I an expert in downsizing? Perhaps not. But I know what works in a small space and that simplifying your life, especially in your later years, will bring to you what you need most, peace…….........
 





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TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 13, 2022

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Social Security Changes To 
Know About for Fall 2022
By John Csiszar


As we head into fall, it’s an important time for Social Security because this is when the annual cost-of-living adjustment will be calculated. Beyond that, it’s also important to be aware of important deadlines and developments that may affect Social Security moving forward.

Here are the things every current and future Social Security beneficiary should be aware of in fall 2022.

The 2023 Cost-of-Living Adjustment

Probably the most important and well-known change that occurs with Social Security every year is the annual cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA. The idea behind the COLA is that Social Security beneficiaries shouldn’t suffer a loss in purchasing power due to rising inflation. Thus, every year the SSA determines how much payments should increase for the following year based on increases in the overall rate of inflation. As inflation has shot up significantly in 2022 — topping 9% in June — many retirees are anticipating a large COLA for 2023.




Support for Greater Government Role 
in Health Care for Older Adults 



About half of adults in America think Medicare and Medicaid should play large roles in paying for ongoing living assistance for older adults, along with private insurers. And majorities of Democrats and Republicans favor policies to help Americans prepare for the costs of providing and receiving long-term care, according to a study from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.

There is bipartisan support for a host of policies to help pay for the costs of long-term care and caregiving, many of which would involve an expanded role for the federal government. Seventy-five percent of U.S. adults overall favor long-term care coverage through Medicare Advantage or supplemental insurance, and about two-thirds support a government-administered long-term care insurance program, government funding for low-income people to receive long-term care in their homes, or Social Security earnings credit for providing care to a loved one.

Tax breaks for purchasing long-term care insurance and for providing care to a family member also enjoy support from about two-thirds of the public.




4 OTC Medications You're 
Probably Taking Too Much Of
By Adam Meyer

If you frequently use over-the-counter (OTC) medications, you're among the more than 260 million Americans who report using them regularly. According to Pharmacy Times, 9 out of 10 Americans rely on these staple household products to help address various ailments, including aches and pains, fever, cold symptoms, and allergies. While OTC medications can be a lifesaver and help you get back up on your feet after a cold or flu has wiped you out, taking too many of these drugs can be hazardous for your health.

"OTC medicines are generally safe, but problems can occur if someone is taking them while on prescription medications," says Laura Purdy, MD, MBA, a board-certified family physician in Fort Benning, Georgia. Read on to find out which popular medications you might be taking too much of and what you should do instead.

You're unlikely to find someone who hasn't taken acetaminophen at some point in their life. Acetaminophen is the active ingredient in Tylenol and one of North America's most commonly used pain relief medications. This drug offers myriad benefits, such as reducing fevers and providing pain relief from toothaches, headaches, arthritis, and more.




Insomnia increases the likelihood 
Of memory decline in older adults



A new Canadian study has found that older people with insomnia are at greater risk of developing memory decline and long-term cognitive impairment such as dementia.

The study, published in the journal SLEEP, is based on data from more than 26,000 participants of the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging, all aged between 45 and 85. The researchers compared completed self-reported evaluations of sleep and memory and neuropsychological testing in several cognitive domains from 2019 and a follow-up in 2022. Participants who reported worsening sleep quality in that three-year interval also had greater odds of reporting subjective memory decline.

"We found that insomnia specifically was related to worse memory performance compared to those who have some insomnia symptoms alone or no sleep problems at all," says the study's co-lead author Nathan Cross, a postdoctoral fellow at the Sleep, Cognition and Neuroimaging Lab. "This deficit in memory was specific, as we also looked at other cognitive function domains such as attention span multi-tasking. We only found differences in memory."






Does Your Credit Score Matter
 If You're Retired?
By Donna Fuscaldo



Think your credit score doesn’t matter in retirement? If you want to open a new credit card, borrow money or get certain insurance, your creditworthiness comes into play even after you’ve stopped working. ​

“Retiring doesn’t mean you quit living, it doesn’t mean you no longer need access to financial resources,” says Rod Griffin, senior director of public education and advocacy at Experian. “Maintaining credit is a critical part of your financial toolbox, having it there to work for you if you need it.” 

Having access to credit can also be lifesaving in the event of an emergency or if it means you don’t have to tap your savings to cover an expense. It's money saving too. A good credit score can be a way to get discounts and deals from a cash back credit card or percentage off at a retailer. “People think credit is about debt, but it's not. It’s about having another financial tool to leverage,” says Griffin. 

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE










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MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 12, 2022

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It’s no secret that older seniors are not comfortable with technology. Until the personal computer, the most complicated electronic device most people had used was the remote for the TV. The digital age came too late for many older folks who had no use for anything more sophisticated than an electronic calculator and a push-button phone. Computers, with its strange language (bits, bytes, downloading, uploading) and bulky components connected by wires and cables and modems, was nothing they wanted anything to do with. And what the heck is the internet and why would I want to be on it, anyway? “I’ll leave all that to the kids”, they thought. And that’s the way it remained for many years. Only a handful of seniors knew how to use a computer, and then, mostly to play games on. It was, to them, still just a toy.


As time went on, and digital technology grew faster and faster (and smaller and smaller) some seniors took another look at what everybody was getting so excited about. The laptop was more portable and easier to set up, and more user friendly. And, when they introduced the tablet, which looked more like a fancy etch-a-sketch than a computer, many older folks found some features useful. But it was not until the cellular age that the elderly took the new technology seriously.

The cellphone, with its small size and ease of use, fit easily into senior’s lifestyle. Not only was it a way of keeping in touch with friends and family, it also became a lifeline in case of emergencies. And best of all, it prepared a population of here-to-fore digitally challenged adults for the best thing to come out of silicon valley since Pac-man, the smart phone. Seniors have taken to this gadget like no other device. Most everyone here at the Asylum has one and uses it daily. However, as with anything new, smart phones can be tricky. And, for those with a limited computer knowledge, some of this technology remains a mystery. This special edition will try to smooth over some pitfalls and make using smartphones easier and enjoyable……
 






Do Seniors Really Need Smartphones?


Do seniors need smartphones? Yes, a simple smartphone can be very useful for seniors. Mainly because it helps them staying connected with their grandchildren by video chatting; controlling smart devices; using GPS to help navigate; monitoring health through apps; and many other features that can improve quality of their lives.

But for all these great features that can come in handy, your senior don’t really need a super fancy smartphone, just a basic one. Moreover, despite of what most of retail sites we find in Internet, a simple smartphone can supply all their needs.

Why do Seniors Need Smartphones?

These days we use our smartphones for nearly everything, but when choosing a phone to be used by seniors. So it’s helpful to narrow down your primary purpose.



iPhone vs. Android: 
How to choose the best smartphone for you



Making a logical choice between iPhone and Android smartphones requires knowing what features and specs are most important to you. Here's what you need to know to make a smart decision.

I don't care that your favorite tech expert says only an idiot would buy an iPhone. Or that your friend in IT swears the other guy is a dolt and her Android phone is the best of the best. That’s not choosing a piece of technology, it’s choosing a tribe. If you want to make a logical choice between an iPhone and an Android phone — based on the technical specs — I have to start by saying there is no one right answer.

The simple truth — tribe allegiance and marketing genius aside — is that iPhones running iOS and smartphones running the Android OS both have good and bad points. And to make matters more complicated, comparing operating systems alone doesn't tell you much.





Best Apps for Seniors: 
Fun, Health, and Convenience
By Nirali Desai



Smartphones have become common among older adults looking for convenience, with apps helping to make seniors’ lives easier and more interesting.

Entertainment apps for seniors

Technology use among older adults has even been linked to better self-rated health, fewer chronic conditions, higher subjective well-being, and lower depression, as it can help reduce the side effects of loneliness, according to a study published on the benefits of social technology use from the Department of Psychology at Michigan State University.

With the increased use of smartphones, new apps are constantly being added to the App Store and Google Play, with an estimated total of 1.85 million apps for Apple (iOS) users and 2.56 million for Android users. Considering the available variety, finding the right apps for seniors can be daunting, so we’ve compiled a list of the most useful senior citizen apps.

Continue reading to discover the best Android and iPhone apps for senior citizens to help support day-to-day tasks.




Find Out How Your Smartphone Can Help Save Your Life
Let first responders see medical information, 
Emergency contacts without knowing your code


Predicting if or when you might have an accident or cope with a medical emergency is impossible, even if you practice a healthy lifestyle and follow your doctor’s advice.

But you can take steps to improve your chances of surviving. One way is to prepare your smartphone for the unexpected.

Obviously, having a phone always with you might save your life, if only because you may be able to use it to call 911 or summon other help. But what happens if you’re incapacitated or can’t speak when a first responder arrives? How will the person treating you find out about the medicines you take, serious allergies you might have, or even your blood type?

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE



Best Smartphones for Seniors
By Taylor Shuman , Senior Tech Expert & Editor



After researching and testing out the best smartphones on the market, we've narrowed our list down to the top five smartphones for seniors.

How Did We Choose the Best Smartphones for Seniors?

Finding a smartphone—or any phone—can take a lot of time. It’s a big decision, especially for seniors planning to invest in a phone. If you’re in the market for your first smartphone or a new smartphone, we can help you. We’ve spent more than 300 hours researching, asking questions, and testing out various phones to create a list of the best cell phones for seniors.

Of course, we knew creating just one list wouldn’t do because some seniors—like you—have their hearts set on a smartphone. Smartphones have many more features than a regular cell phone, so we had to develop a list of criteria to help us rank the phones. The four most important criteria we looked at were:

Senior-friendliness: This is a list for seniors, after all. We look for senior-friendly features, including large screen size, simple navigation, medical alert capabilities, bright screens, adjustable speakers, and hearing aid compatibility. Of course, not every phone has it all, but each offers a good mix of senior-friendly features.

Best Smartphones for Seniors...




How To Stop Spam Text Messages For Good
Spammers are phishing to harvest your 
personal data or send you malware.
Here's how to spot and stop spam text messages.

By Pooja Shah



“Hi Pooja, it’s Bob from your bank. Your payment can’t be processed. Please reprocess by clicking the link below.”

Chances are you’ve received some iteration of that text message recently. Gone are the days when spam messages were limited to phone calls and emails. While it was usually obvious that a voice at the other end of the call was trying to gather sensitive personal information from you or that the email request from yet another Nigerian prince was bogus, spam text messages are not always immediately recognizable.

Ninety-seven percent of Americans own a phone of some kind. And because mobile usage is increasingly our primary point of connection, there are increasing spam tactics, scams and phishing attempts that are impacting consumers, which means we all need to be hyper aware and not always engage when receiving random or unusual texts.

“Any path of communication is abused by bad people. Text has become one of the most common ways for people to communicate, so that is where the attackers go. Sadly, it is effective,” said Kevin Johnson, a security analyst and CEO of Secure Ideas.




SENIOR SMART PHONE SAFETY


Technology has changed our lives dramatically. Things like dishwashers, TV remotes, computers and cell phones have made life so much easier than it once was. But at the same time, some of these items also open you up to certain dangers.

Just like hackers, scammers and phishers attack you through your computer, the same individuals can and will attempt to attack you and your phone. With this in mind, it’s important to be careful as you use your phone. Cell phones open you up to scams, identity theft and potential financial ruin if they are not used with care.

When you were a kid, your phone was tied to the wall with a cord. It was a way to talk to someone both near and far, but that was all it did. Today’s phones have done more than cut the cord. With thousands of apps available and having access to the web, the smartphone has opened us up to the world … and it to us. Therein lies the danger.




5 Smartphone Tips for Seniors
Learn how to master your cell phone with these hints. 




Use these smartphone tips for seniors to master your cellular device.Over 75% of Americans own a smartphone, and in recent years adults over the age of 50 have been one of the fastest growing populations to begin using these mobile devices. Smartphones provide a convenient way to access the internet as well as connect with others on-the-go. If you are a new smartphone user or know someone who is, learn how to master it with these smartphone tips for seniors:

1. Start simple

Learning any new technology can be intimidating, but with time you may develop an appreciation for its convenience and ease. Starting simply with basics and then trying out advanced settings once you feel more comfortable can help make using a new smartphone easier. As you go along, be patient with yourself or someone you care about as they become familiar with their device and customize it for their own needs.

2. Customize the settings

Whether you are using an iPhone or Android device, there are several options available that allow you to customize settings such as font size, screen brightness, volume, and notification sounds. To navigate to these options, click on “Settings.” No matter which device you use, a list of customizable options will appear so you can set your phone to look and operate in ways that are best for you. If you have hearing loss and like to stream videos on your phone, find out how to turn on captions on your smartphone from the Settings menu in this helpful infographic.

3. Keep password information securely stored

Another smartphone tip for everyone including seniors is to store password information safely. While some websites you visit or even certain apps on your phone may require passwords, your phone itself may also need a passcode to unlock it – more on this in smartphone tip #5. Consider writing down your passwords and securely storing them at home or use a cloud-based password manager like Keeper.




Never Charge Your Android Phone 
This Way, Experts Say

YOU MIGHT BE GUILTY OF DOING THIS 
EVERY TIME YOU PLUG YOUR PHONE IN.
By ABBY REINHARD



Charging your Android smartphone is a daily necessity—unless you want to face the dreaded dead battery. You might prefer to charge your phone while you sleep and aren't actively using it, or plug it into your car's USB outlet on your morning commute. But tech experts have specific recommendations for charging your Android, which include avoiding a very common habit. Read on to find out what you shouldn't do when plugging in your Android, and how it could be killing your battery.

Android smartphones have a specific kind of battery

Inside your Android—powering your ability to text, snap pictures, or play Candy Crush—is a lithium-ion battery. According to Android Authority, this type of battery has been the first choice for several smartphones, and it offers a whole host of benefits, including durability and low production costs.

But these batteries also have their downsides, particularly as they age and begin to deteriorate, Dignited reports. This deterioration starts when it leaves the manufacturer, and causes batteries to tap out within just two to five years. With that in mind, tech and smartphone experts have tips for what not to do when charging your Android, as you could be killing your battery even faster.




AT&T sues T-Mobile over its 
senior discounts ad campaign
By Sue Marek




AT&T is suing T-Mobile over the company’s latest ad campaign targeting senior citizens. In the campaign, T-Mobile touts its discounted rates for those 55 and older and claims that “92% of seniors in the U.S. can’t get a wireless discount from Verizon or AT&T because they don’t live in Florida.”

AT&T filed its lawsuit September 6 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas Sherman Division. In the complaint, AT&T accuses T-Mobile of false advertising and says the company’s ad campaign is “intentionally designed to deceive senior citizens.” 

AT&T said that it offers discounted wireless service and activation fees to seniors in all 50 states through its partnership with AARP.  On the  AARP website, AARP members are offered a savings of up to $10 per line per month on AT&T’s Unlimited Premium plan, plus they can receive up to $50 in waived activation and upgrade fees. To be eligible for an AARP membership, one must be 50 years or older and pay an annual fee of $12.

Roger Entner, founder of Recon Analytics, and one of the first to report AT&T’s lawsuit on Twitter, says that T-Mobile likes to make a splash with its promotions and it obviously touched a nerve with AT&T. “Otherwise, you don’t have a lawsuit,” he said.



20 Providers Offering $30-a-Month 
High-Speed Internet Access
By Ed Waldman


Twenty internet service providers are offering high-speed internet access for no more than $30 a month to all U.S. households eligible for the federal government’s $14.2 billion Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP).


The program, which replaced 2021’s temporary, pandemic-inspired Emergency Broadband Benefit Program, topped 13.5 million households as of Sept. 5, an increase of almost 50 percent since early January. The rate is specifically offered for ACP enrollees, who qualify because of their lower household income.

“The need for high-speed internet is a little bit like it probably used to be like my grandfather talked about the need to have a telephone,” President Joe Biden said May 9 at a White House ceremony. “It’s pretty consequential. High-speed internet is not a luxury any longer. It’s a necessity."







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The savvy and healthy habits that allowed 
The Queen to reign supreme for so many years



One of the most famous people in the world, Queen Elizabeth II has lived in the spotlight for almost her entire life, and this year she marks a remarkable 70 years as England's monarch. Generations have been fascinated by the trials and tribulations of the Royal Family; multiple books have been written about them and about her and she's been portrayed onscreen by Helen Mirren and most recently, by Claire Foy and Olivia Colman in "The Crown."

Although the pandemic has kept Queen Elizabeth, now 96, out of public view more than in the past (she was spotted out for the first time in October and again in November, where she wore a mask), she continues to fulfill her royal duties, even observing the unveiling of a new portrait via Zoom. 

Author Bryan Kozlowski has written a new book, "Long Live the Queen: 23 Rules for Living from Britain's Longest Reigning Monarch," which examines some of the Queen's "best practices," which may or may not include keeping a crossword puzzle in her ever-present purse "for emergencies." 

Read more  >>   CLICK HERE




Nursing home residents 
Get robotic pets



Loneliness and anxiety are just some of the issues that can come with dementia. A Nebraska nursing home hopes to combat that with a unique kind of technology: robotic pets.
Advertisement

The robotic pets are already a hit at Florence Home's house of Hope Assisted Living & Memory Care.

"It's engaging for them, they really are enjoying it," said Lois Jordan, CEO and president of Midwest Geriatrics.

Florence Home said the robotic pets have many emotional and mental benefits for residents.

"Studies have shown with life-like or robotic pets, people with dementia or memory issues... they can have a reduction in unwanted symptoms like depression, sadness, anxiety," said April Hauf, the director of social services.

Hauf applied for a grant from the Twilight Wish Foundation to get 10 robotic pets and tablets for Florence Home Healthcare Center residents.




Your body’s full of stuff you 
No longer need. 
Here’s a list.

By Robby Berman



Evolutionary anthropologist and Boston College post-doc, Dorsa Amir, started the whole thing with a series of eight tweets, and boy did she start something fun. Amir laid out a list of weird, once-useful details of the human anatomy that we continue to carry around within — and on — us. Basically, this is the stuff that served some evolutionary purpose at some point, but now is kind of, well, extra.

Natural selection, after all, has no reason to clear away unnecessary traits if they pose no evolutionary disadvantage. And when we say “started the whole thing,” what we mean is that, this being Twitter, some arguing was inevitable. Some people took issue with Amir’s use of the word “vestigial.” One issue with the word is that early traits may still be beneficial in ways we don’t yet know — the microbiome-managing appendix and the immune system’s tonsils were both considered among these for some time. A trait’s stated assumed value is also always just our best guess, so a certain amount of uncertainty is understood to be baked-in. It’s important to remember, too, that if a mutation just happened to happen and persisted because it was useful, it’s not the same thing as saying it has a reason to exist. The reason was randomness, unless one doesn’t believe in evolution.

Which gets us to the second type of argument Amir’s posts generated. Some creationist-intelligent design believers seem to be patrolling Twitter to shout down references to science where it arises. Probably this post will also get them going. Amir has nonetheless started a list and a conversation that is totally worth checking out, hair-splitting aside. Here are the six traits that inaugurated the fun.




Deciding the Best Time to Retire

By Devin Partida


Choosing when to retire is one of the most important decisions you'll ever make. People typically do so when they're older, but not every retiree is considered a senior citizen. As a result, some people retire earlier than the recommended age and may not get all the benefits, while those who retire later will likely get a better payout but will have to work additional years.

Retirement is a relaxing period of life everyone hopes to make it to. However, it requires some financial stability, allowing people to enjoy the rest of their lives in peace and only work if they choose to. During your retirement, you can choose to do whatever you want — as long as you have the financial means.

What Does Retirement Mean?

Simply put, retirement is when you no longer have a job and can enjoy the rest of your life doing things you love rather than working. Most retirees are senior citizens, but others retire much earlier if they have a better financial situation. Just over 10% of people retire before 60, with others deciding to wait until after this age to indulge in retirement.






Marijuana use linked to heart 
Rhythm issues in older adults
By Michael Walter


Marijuana use among older adults is associated with a heightened risk of atrial and ventricular arrhythmias, according to new research published in the American Journal of Cardiology.



“Marijuana is widely used across the United States, and marijuana use has increased from 2.4% in 2015 to 4.2% in 2018 among adults aged ≥65 years,” wrote first author Barbara N. Harding, PhD, with the Barcelona Institute of Global Health, and colleagues. “Marijuana use increases sympathetic nervous system activity and inhibits cardiac parasympathetic innervation, resulting in elevated heart rate, elevated blood pressure, and an increase in myocardial oxygen demand.”

Harding et al. tracked data from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA), focusing on data from nearly 1,500 participants. All participants were between the ages of 45 and 84 years old and free of cardiovascular disease when they first enrolled in MESA from 2000 to 2002. After enrollment, follow-up examinations occurred every two to six years. Each individual underwent at least 24 hours of extended electrocardiographic (ECG) monitoring.




Providing palliative care to wider group of people, 
Including assisted living residents, 
Gains bipartisan support

A demonstration project to deliver palliative care no matter where an individual lives — including in assisted living communities — and earlier in the disease process has gained bipartisan support.

In a June 16 letter to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure, members of the Senate Comprehensive Care Caucus asked that the CMS Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation implement a community-based pilot project to enable palliative care to be provided at the same time as curative treatments for people with serious illnesses or injuries.

U.S. Sens. Jacky Rosen (D-NV), John Barraso (R-WY) and Deb Fischer (R-NE) said that the “compassionate, comprehensive care” provided through palliative care addresses the individual as a whole, quality of life and symptom management.




The Importance Of Senior Living 
In A Healthy Aging Plan
By Sandra Gordon

As we age, we can acquire health and physical issues that can impact our ability to live independently. In such situations, living at home—especially alone—might not be the safest option. Fortunately, planning ahead for a more suitable living environment can boost their overall quality of life. Read on to learn more about how various forms of senior living can fit positively into a balanced future and the importance of assisted living planning for a smart and healthy aging plan.

What Is Senior Living?

Senior living is a common, albeit outdated, term used to describe living environments designed for the specific needs of older adults. “Senior living allows older adults to continue to live and prosper in the safest, most appropriate environment based on their medical and physical capabilities and/or limitations,” says Ben Mandelbaum, CEO of Senior Planning Services in Lakewood, New Jersey.

Some examples of specialized care housing options and facilities for older adults include (but aren’t limited to):




Ability to balance is 
Linked to a longer life
By Katie Hunt


An inability to stand on one leg for 10 seconds in later life is linked to nearly double the risk of death from any cause within the next decade, according to a new study.

The simple balance test may be useful to include in routine physical exams for people in middle and old age, the research, which was published Tuesday in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, suggested

While aging leads to a decline in physical fitness, muscle strength and flexibility, balance tends to be reasonably well-preserved until a person's 50s, when it starts to wane relatively rapidly, the research noted. Previous research has linked the inability to stand on...



Eating Processed Meats Can Cause 
Skin Aging, Experts Warn 
By Adam Meyer

As we get older, we tend to feel younger than we look. Of course, there will always be those lucky few who never seem to age, but for most of us, it's an unavoidable part of life. We notice wrinkles, cracks, and dry patches in our skin and assume they're natural signs of aging skin. But the foods we eat can play a significant role in the health of our skin, causing it to age faster than it should. Curious how what you eat can ramp up your skin's aging process? Read on to find out which popular food damages your skin and makes it age faster.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 90 percent of Americans aged two and older consume more sodium than they need. The 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA) recommends a daily sodium intake of less than 2,300 milligrams. (To give you an idea how much that is, a single serving (100 grams) of bacon contains 1,800 milligrams of sodium.)

Sodium absorbs moisture in your body—that's why eating too many salty foods can make you feel dehydrated. Without adequate hydration, your skin isn't nourished, and is more susceptible to wrinkles and aging.





Loss of autonomy: 
How guardianships 
Threaten people’s rights
By Melissa Hellmann

From Britney Spears to Wendy Williams, financial guardianships and conservatorships have entered the limelight as legal tools with the potential for abuse. 

These high-profile cases have led to growing calls for reform. Disability rights organizations also have long advocated for less restrictive alternatives to guardianship for people with disabilities. Guardians, in some states called conservators, impact a large swath of the population: In 2018, there were an estimated 1.3 million active guardianship or conservatorship cases nationwide, according to a National Council on Disability report. 

While the systems vary by state, a guardian or conservator is a court-ordered representative who makes financial or healthcare decisions for a person deemed incapable of properly caring for themselves. People with intellectual and developmental disabilities, the elderly or those who have experienced traumatic brain injuries are most likely to have guardians appointed.



Flu vaccination cuts older adults’ dementia 
Odds by 40 percent over 4 years


Older adults with no signs of dementia and at least one flu vaccination were 40% less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease within the next four years than their unvaccinated peers, according to a new study.

Investigators used a large U.S. claims database to compare dementia outcomes in vaccinated and unvaccinated patients aged 65 years and older who had no initial evidence of brain disease. The more cumulative annual shots the patients had received, the greater their protection against Alzheimer’s, reported Paul. E. Schulz, M.D., of the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, and colleagues.

During follow-up appointments over four years, approximately 5.1% of flu-vaccinated cohort developed Alzheimer’s disease, compared with 8.5% of their non-vaccinated peers. There were more than 900,000 patients in each group.




Don’t care about ‘privatizing’ Medicare? 
You should! 

Medicare’s goal is to have all traditional Medicare recipients in managed care arrangements by 2030 

That’s bureaucratic-speak for privatizing Medicare. The millions of people on traditional Medicare will be shifted against their will to programs in which commercial middlemen can profit by reducing the amount of care they receive.

Do people realize what “privatizing” Medicare means? Medicare was designed to give senior citizens direct access to medical care: no middlemen deciding whether you can see a doctor, which doctor you can see, or which covered service the doctor can provide. That’s why Medicare is so popular, successful and efficient.




15 Million-plus Senior Citizens 
Suffer from Food Insecurity


The inflation uptick continues to impose serious hardship on hungry senior citizens—particularly and tragically those suffering from malnutrition. The victims are the most vulnerable of our aging population-- those who struggle to make ends meet on minimal fixed incomes at a time when the price of food is skyrocketing as the result of an uncontrolled, record-breaking rate of inflation.

There are many factors that triggered the inflationary surge, not the least of which was the devil-may-care progressive spending spree of the Biden administration and the Congress it controls. The numbers don’t lie. In December of 2020, a month before Joe Biden took office, the rate of inflation stood at 1.4%. Since President Biden assumed office in January 2021 the rate of inflation has ticked up to at least 8.5% and climbing, making life difficult for us all but in particular for the fixed income seniors who have no alternative other than to live with it or die. Before the surge a quart of milk cost about 90 cents. The price of that same quart of milk today is more than 20% higher at about $1.09 per quart.

It's not a matter of conjecture. A new Rasmussen poll shows that a growing number of us put the blame for the increasing cost of living on the president. It was bad enough in December at the end of his first year in office when only 32% of voters gave him an okay, but the newest survey shows that just 27% think he’s doing a good job; 57% give him a poor rating on his handling of the economy.




How to Retire Early – 
The Definitive Guide
By John Rampton

Have you dreamed of early retirement? How about the freedom it brings – financial and otherwise? It's not just you who dreams of early retirement.

In fact, since 1992, people have embraced the F.I.R.E. movement. It has become more popular in recent years. As an example, Natixis Investment Managers reported that Generation Y (ages 26-61) wants to retire at the age of 60 on average.

There is a slight hiccup, unfortunately. 59% of Americans don't believe that have enough to retire, let alone retire early. There are a number of reasons why a majority of people feel this way. Everything from overwhelming debt, the impact of the pandemic, and inflation.

At the same time, all is not lost. As well as getting your retirement savings back on track, you might be able to still retire early. How? Well, let's show you the following guide.



ACIP recommends enhanced flu vaccines 
For older Americans, adds MMR vaccine

The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices voted unanimously on Wednesday to recommend enhanced influenza vaccines for older Americans, introduce a second MMR vaccine, and OK a 15-valent pneumococcal vaccine for children.

The committee voted 15-0 to recommend that people aged 65 years or older receive a high-dose inactivated influenza vaccine, adjuvanted inactivated influenza vaccine, or recombinant influenza vaccine over any of the standard-dose unadjuvanted, inactivated vaccines.

They assessed preliminary data from the 2021–2022 influenza season, which showed that vaccination reduced acute respiratory illness from influenza A(H3N2) by 35% (95% CI, 19%47%). But Lisa Grohskopf, MD, MPH, of the CDC’s Influenza Division, noted that influenza vaccines are often less effective among older populations, leading to the need for specific recommendations for high-dose vaccines in this population.




The dangers of heat-related 
Illnesses to older adults
By Dr. Jeffrey Luther,


Now that it is summertime, the heat is building up.

As you age to around 55 to 65 years old, your ability to respond appropriately to the heat can start to become a serious problem, because as you get older you are at an increased risk of heat-related illnesses. These include:

    Heat stroke.
    Heat edema, or swelling in your ankles and feet when you get hot.
    Heat syncope, or sudden dizziness after exercising in the heat.
    Heat cramps.
    Heat exhaustion.

Although heat affects everyone differently, it is especially dangerous in individuals aged 65 and older.



Nearly one-third of older Americans have 
Less than $10,000 saved for retirement
By Alessandra Malito

Many older Americans are willing to work during their retirement years — and they may have to be — because they aren’t financially prepared for their old age. 

Almost three in 10 people between 55 and 67 years old have less than $10,000 saved for retirement, though 32% of women specifically have less than $10,000 earmarked for their old age, according to a new survey from Sagewell Financial, a financial technology company focused on seniors’ money management. Four in 10 people had less than $50,000 saved for retirement, whereas 47% of women had less than that much compared with 30% of men. 

More than seven out of 10 respondents said they plan or are willing to work in retirement, the survey found. 



Study Links Stress to a 
Faster-Aging Immune System


A healthy immune response is key to fighting off diseases like COVID-19. As we age, however, our immune systems become less efficient at preventing illnesses, recovering from infection, and responding to vaccines. But not everyone’s immune system ages at the same rate—factors like smoking can accelerate this decline, while exercise can slow it down. 

A study published last week in PNAS reports another contributor to immune aging: social stress. 

“Stress exposure is literally wearing your body down,” says Ryon Cobb, a professor of psychology at the University of Georgia. “It goes along with this idea that the body never forgets.” Cobb wasn’t involved in the research, but study coauthor and University of Southern California (USC) gerontologist Eileen Crimmins was one of his postdoctoral instructors.  



COVID-19 booster increases antibodies 
By more than 85% in nursing home 
Residents and their caregivers


The pandemic has hit nursing home residents especially hard, with a disproportionately large share of COVID-19 infection and mortality rates in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

But new research from the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in partnership with Brown University shows that high levels of Omicron-specific immunity can be achieved in nursing home residents and their caregivers with a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, also known as the booster shot.

The findings were published this month in the journal eBioMedicine, part of The Lancet network.




Senior Citizens Will Soon Outnumber People Under 18. 
Here's How Cultural Organizations Can Engage Them, 
According to a New Study 
By Sarah Cascone


The elderly are the fastest growing segment of the U.S. population, and they have—contrary to some stereotypes—a deep desire to engage with arts and culture, according to a new report from the research group Culture Track.

Over 28,300 people aged 55 and older were surveyed online for the report, titled “Untapped Opportunity: Older Americans and the Arts.” It encourages museums and other institutions to disregard what it says are commonly held misconceptions about seniors losing interest in the arts over time, and to increase outreach to older audiences for programming.

Culture Track found that such an approach could encourage an intergenerational dialogue, and that it might be time to reconsider age-defined approaches to audience engagement that creates divisions between the generations.



Assisted Living: What You Need To 
Know Before You Make A Decision 


On that long list of worries and concerns about aging, there is one subject that always rises to the top of the list – money. For many seniors, that long-awaited time when we should be able to kick back and enjoy our new-found freedom is colored with a growing sense of worry regarding our limited resources. Having a place to live, without placing a burden on others, is paramount in the minds of many. Frances Fuller, award-winning author of “Helping Yourself Grow Old” addressed that question in a recent post on her website titled, “Can I Afford The Assisted Care I Need?” In that piece she wrote in part:

“The question of cost is basic when we begin to search for a place to spend our declining years. Our resources are limited, and we don’t know how long they need to last. While visiting a certain very beautiful community, I met a lively, well-dressed woman who was chatting with a friend in the common room. She told me she was 98 years old and had lived there for nineteen years. Honestly if I had heard this when I was seventy-five I would have found it scary. (The cost of getting old can be fearful.)

“Besides, even if our funds are unlimited, we have principles related to how we are willing to spend money. We have families, younger generations behind us. And we live, with tender consciences in a needy world.



Nearly 2 out of 3 Women 
Over Age 50 
Face Discrimination​
By Michelle Crouch


Nearly 2 out of 3 women age 50 and older say they are regularly discriminated against, and those experiences appear to be taking a toll on their mental health, according to the latest "Mirror/Mirror" survey from AARP.

The poll of 6,643 women paints a disheartening picture of discrimination affecting women of all ages, ethnicities and races, with significant implications for their health and longevity.

Ageism was the most frequently reported type of discrimination among women 50 and older who experience discrimination regularly, with 48 percent reporting bias based on their age, according to the poll. Discrimination based on ethnicity/race/skin tone, weight, gender and social class was also widely reported.

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE



Oliver Burkeman's last column: 
The eight secrets to a (fairly) fulfilled life
By Oliver Burkeman


In the very first instalment of my column for the Guardian’s Weekend magazine, a dizzying number of years ago now, I wrote that it would continue until I had discovered the secret of human happiness, whereupon it would cease. Typically for me, back then, this was a case of facetiousness disguising earnestness. Obviously, I never expected to find the secret, but on some level I must have known there were questions I needed to confront – about anxiety, commitment-phobia in relationships, control-freakery and building a meaningful life. Writing a column provided the perfect cover for such otherwise embarrassing fare.

I hoped I’d help others too, of course, but I was totally unprepared for how companionable the journey would feel: while I’ve occasionally received requests for help with people’s personal problems, my inbox has mainly been filled with ideas, life stories, quotations and book recommendations from readers often far wiser than me. (Some of you would have been within your rights to charge a standard therapist’s fee.) For all that: thank you.

I am drawing a line today not because I have uncovered all the answers, but because I have a powerful hunch that the moment is right to do so. If nothing else, I hope I’ve acquired sufficient self-knowledge to know when it’s time to move on. So what did I learn? What follows isn’t intended as an exhaustive summary. But these are the principles that surfaced again and again, and that now seem to me most useful for navigating times as baffling and stress-inducing as ours.



The Disadvantages of Aging in Place

While you may have already downsized to a more manageable home or condo, you won't have to move again, which is emotionally straining, physically taxing and can be financially cumbersome. Aging in place also lets you remain in your familiar surroundings, close to friends and possibly family. And there are other advantages.

But there's a flip side to aging in place that needs to be weighed:

    You may have to move again if you can't be adequately cared for in your home, and it'll be much harder when you are older and in worse health.

    You can become isolated, especially if you can no longer drive.

    Caregiving help can get expensive and hard to find if you need it.

    If you have mobility problems, it's easy to be mostly confined to your home.

    Your home may become a burden, with its continual needs for maintenance and upkeep.

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE



How to design homes for 
Life well beyond 100
By Nate Berg


It’s too early to predict all the ways that longer lives will change society, but at least one industry is starting to make some guesses. The developers, designers, and operators of senior housing are thinking about and planning for how these demographic shifts will affect their businesses and the services they provide.

To get ahead of the curve, some are designing their facilities for people who will technically be seniors for more than 40 years. They’re learning from communities around the world where people tend to live the longest and reconsidering the golf courses and bingo halls that were once central leisure activities. They’re also trying to design features that enable people to be healthy and active as long as possible.
Inspirata Pointe at Royal Oak in Sun City, Arizona [Image: courtesy Perkins Eastman]

It’s a dramatic change from the last-stop nature of retirement communities of the recent past. If people will soon be living many more years in homes and communities long assumed to have a quick turnover, the way these spaces are planned and built will have to change.




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A Valuable New Framework For 
Improving The Care Of Older Adults
By Howard Gleckman


Imagine, for a moment, a functioning, well-developed system for improving the lives of frail older adults. Imagine that, instead of our current chaotic, dangerous, and needlessly expensive patchwork of care for seniors, the U.S. had a well-coordinated care model that leverages and supports paid aides, family caregivers, safe and appropriate housing, and new technology.

And imagine a system that makes it possible for older adults to live in the setting most appropriate for them, links their personal care with medical treatment, and provides the financial support to pay for it.

For the past year, a broadly diverse group of long-term care policy experts have been working to develop such a framework. Today, they released the results of their labors, done under the auspices of The Convergence Center for Policy Resolution. Full disclosure: I served as a member of the group’s steering committee.




Helping middle-class caregivers 
And patients remain independent
BY JEFFREY LEWIS AND FRANCESCA RINALDO, MD


In 1984, former U.S. Sen. John Heinz told the National Association of Home Care that the long-term care crisis America faced could not “be resolved by one legislator alone; it requires the full attention of the American people and Congress.”

Almost four decades later, Congress continues to ignore the mounting long-term care crisis facing too many middle-class Americans in addition to their counterparts. The situation has left the caregiving workforce fraying and collapsing. And we, as a society, have handcuffed our future because of congressional malaise and inaction. The long-term care tsunami is upon us.

Consider some of these real-life scenarios:

Older Americans on fixed incomes must choose between paying for care they need and deserve and staying in their homes.




‘It’s becoming too expensive to live’: 
Anxious older adults try to 
Cope with limited budgets
Reviewed by Emily Henderson


Economic insecurity is upending the lives of millions of older adults as soaring housing costs and inflation diminish the value of fixed incomes.

Across the country, seniors who until recently successfully managed limited budgets are growing more anxious and distressed. Some lost work during the covid-19 pandemic. Others are encountering unaffordable rent increases and the prospect of losing their homes. Still others are suffering significant sticker shock at grocery stores.

Dozens of older adults struggling with these challenges — none poor by government standards — wrote to me after I featured the Elder Index, a measure of the cost of aging, in a recent column. That tool, developed by researchers at the Gerontology Institute at the University of Massachusetts-Boston, suggests that 54% of older women who live alone have incomes below what's needed to pay for essential expenses. For single men, the figure is 45%.




When should I get my flu shot this year? 
New CDC guidance for people 65 and older


Even as COVID-19 continues to circulate, flu is lurking in the background.

Flu season typically starts in the U.S. in October before peaking between December and February and extending into May. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it takes about two weeks after vaccination for flu antibodies to develop in the body, so timing comes into play when scheduling your influenza vaccine.

Most people need only one dose of flu vaccine for the season, making September and October a good time to be vaccinated. Ideally, according to CDC, everyone should be vaccinated by the end of October.






6 Things Doctors Don't Tell Most Patients
By Heather Newgen


Ever wonder if your doctor is really forthcoming or if there's information being held back? Chances are there is something you're not being told. While your physician will always be honest about your health, there are certain things they won't tell you and Eat This, Not That Health spoke with Dr. Tomi Mitchell, a Board-Certified Family Physician with Holistic Wellness Strategies who shares six things doctors won't tell you and why. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.

Dr. Mitchell tells us, "In the medical field, there is a saying: 'First, not harm.' This means that, above all else, doctors should avoid causing any harm to their patients. Withholding information from a patient can sometimes achieve this goal. If a patient is not yet ready to face a difficult diagnosis, a doctor may feel that it is best to delay giving them the news. In other cases, a doctor may withhold information to protect a patient's emotional well-being. As anyone who has ever been given bad news knows, hearing something can be just as upsetting as seeing it.

In some cases, then, doctors withhold information to spare their patients unnecessary pain. Of course, this is not always possible or desirable. Ultimately, each situation must be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.










Any regular user of Facebook will recognize a post that pops up every now and again which asks “If you could go back in time and meet your younger self, what advice would you give him?” Usually, I keep on scrolling, past the cat photos, the political memes and the ads for “fashion adult diapers” in search of some meaningful content. However, since I recently had a birthday, my 77th, questions like this have taken on a new meaning.

The one thing old people have is plenty of time to ponder upon one’s life. Invariably, those thoughts will reflect what was and what might have been. Therefore, the possibility of returning to a time when you had your youth, and the world was full of promise becomes quite appealing.

So, what would I say to a teenage Bruce? First, some ground rules. This is not about me going back in time. Therefore, I will not hand the young me a list of winning lottery numbers or tell him not to get rid of any Mickey Mantle baseball cards. I’ll leave things like getting in on the ground floor of stocks like Apple or anything about online retailing out of the conversation. No, tomes I impart to me will be knowledge gained over the years by me making some bad, and good, life choices.

First on the list would be advice about health. If there is one thing I, and almost every other senior, will tell you is that no matter how much money you have or how well you have done, if you don’t have your health, you have nothing. Specifically, I would encourage doing regular doctor visits, especially the dentist. Though I have always tried to take care of my teeth, I have been lax at seeing a dentist. This has led to some tooth loss and pain in later years, a time when you need your teeth the most. The same goes true for eyes and ears. Stay away from loud music and have regular eye exams. I’d also mention watching one’s diet. Many late-in-life maladies can be marginalized if you are not overweight.

Money comes next. I can’t tell him how to make a lot of it. That is something that has eluded me. However, I will tell him to save as much of it as he can. The one thing I have learned is that no matter how much you have put away for when you can no longer work, it’s not enough. Also, a little frugality is okay. Not cheap mind you, but cautious. Shakespeare was so right with that famous line from "Hamlet": "Neither a borrower, nor a lender be; For loan oft loses both itself and friend." And, when making a purchase, always buy the best you can afford. Properly made items will last longer and will, over time, pay for themselves.


Love and relationships. I left this last for good reason. I, like many people, know little or nothing about either. What minute amount I know is that having a few good friends is more important than collecting acquaintances by the dozens. Love, is more complicated. I have not done well in that department. But I learned one thing. Love is not a one-way street. To quote those great philosophers, Lennon and McCartney, make sure “the love you take is equal to the love you make.”
 
That’s the gist of what I would tell myself or any other impressionable youth. Of course, he won’t listen to anything I said because, well, he’s an idiot kid, and I’m just a crazy old man. But, at least I tried……......
 






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Low physical function after 
Age 65 associated with future
Cardiovascular disease


Among people older than age 65 who were assessed using a short physical function test, having lower physical function was independently associated with a greater risk of developing heart attack, heart failure and stroke, according to new research published today in the Journal of the American Heart Association, an open access, peer-reviewed journal of the American Heart Association.

The Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB) used in this study is considered a measure of physical function, which includes walking speed, leg strength and balance. This study examined physical function, which is different from physical fitness.

“While traditional cardiovascular disease risk factors such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, smoking or diabetes are closely linked to cardiovascular disease, particularly in middle-aged people, we also know these factors may not be as predictive in older adults, so we need to identify nontraditional predictors for older adults,” said study senior author Kunihiro Matsushita, M.D., Ph.D., an associate professor in the department of epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and the Division of Cardiology at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore. “We found that physical function in older adults predicts future cardiovascular disease beyond traditional heart disease risk factors, regardless of whether an individual has a history of cardiovascular disease.”




Senior living TikToks turn senior 
Citizens into social media stars
By Lauren Finney


Senior living accounts on TikTok allow people who live in assisted living facilities to share their knowledge, experience, and humor with the world. While it's unclear just how many of these accounts exist, the hashtag #seniorliving has been used 103.6 million times, and the hashtag #seniorlivingcommunity has been used 8.9 million times.

One popular senior living account is Allegria Senior Living, which is run by Chana Lachman. Lachman is the founder of Connected Healthcare Marketing and often works with Allegria. 

Lachman works out of Allegria Senior Living's residence in Ocean Grove, New Jersey, and collaborates with residents to produce and post daily short skits and clips. She attributes the overwhelmingly positive feedback on their account to the residents being their unapologetic and authentic selves.




Over-the-Counter vs. 
Prescription Hearing Aids
By Michelle Crouch


By mid-October, you will be able to buy hearing aids without a prescription, possibly saving thousands of dollars per pair. On Aug. 16, the Food and Drug Administration agreed to allow over-the-counter hearing aids to be sold directly to consumers. They are intended for adults with mild to moderate hearing loss.

Although the first models are expected to largely resemble the devices you can get through a hearing professional, there are some important differences. 

Here are five ways over-the-counter devices differ from prescription versions.

1. Over-the-counter (OTC) hearing aids are for mild to moderate hearing loss, while prescription hearing aids are for severe hearing loss.

    Over-the-counter hearing aids:  They are intended for adults with perceived mild to moderate hearing loss, the FDA says. That means your hearing loss range is between 20 and 60 decibels (dB). And you don’t need a hearing test to try out an over-the-counter device, the FDA says. Signs that you may have mild to moderate hearing loss include: You often ask people to repeat themselves or speak up, speech sounds muffled, you have trouble hearing in noisy places or you turn up the volume on the TV higher than other people prefer.

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE



Can Innovation In Primary Care Slay 
The Healthcare Leviathan? 
By Seth Joseph


This is Part 2 of a two-part series on innovation in primary care. Part 1 covered the importance of primary care, and the reason that investors have bet $16B and counting into primary care with the belief that there is an opportunity to control healthcare costs, provide better care, and return value to shareholders. Part 2 covers who the innovative players in primary care are, how they compete, who is likely to win, the future of the primary care physician, and whether any of this can help to slay the healthcare leviathan.

The recent news that Amazon acquired One Medical created waves of media attention, much of which focused on Amazon’s aspirations in healthcare but missed the crucial point: why primary care? And it further missed the fact that, while Amazon should never be taken lightly, there has in fact been a renaissance in primary care quietly playing out over the past decade or so.

The question of whether Amazon can meaningfully impact healthcare costs, quality and patient experience misses the more important questions: who else is also innovating in primary care, what are the different approaches, and which ones are most likely to succeed (and why)?






Things to know about hospice care 
By Richard Kaufman


If you have doubts about calling a hospice for your sick loved one or family member because it might mean you’re “giving up” on them, don’t be. Accepting hospice care is a good way for a loved one to receive only the best medical care. This article will discuss the different spoken and unspoken issues regarding hospice care and why you should start looking for the best hospice care in San Diego.

What is a Hospice?

Contrary to what people think, hospice doesn’t refer to a place where people go to. No. hospice care is a service where care is brought into your own home, a private residence, an assisted living facility, or a nursing home. Many people want to and can stay at home and receive hospice care but if your care becomes too complicated and difficult to manage at home, you can elect to receive short-term inpatient care in a hospital, nursing facility or hospice unit. This greatly helps in controlling symptoms.

What services does hospice provide?











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WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 7, 2022

Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com








Exploring ways to identify ageism 
And counteract its negative effects
By Helen Dennis


Last week, we discussed the profound effect of ageism on longevity, physical and cognitive health, recovery from illness and more. This week we will continue the discussion and address different forms of aging and some beginning thoughts on what we can do about it.  

Ageism comes in many forms, according to helpguide.org.  

Interpersonal ageism. This takes place between groups of two or more individuals. For example, a supervisor doesn’t give you an assignment because of your age.  A family member says, “We don’t expect that you can keep up with us” or “I don’t think you will understand what we are talking about.” And then there is elder speak, which is simplifying language while raising your voice. It’s speaking to older adults as if they were children. 




New push to stop federal taxes on 
Social Security benefits: 
‘You Earned It, You Keep It’ bill


U.S. Rep. Angie Craig, D-Minnesota, recently introduced the “You Earned It, You Keep It Act” to repeal federal taxes on Social Security benefits for retirees across the country.

“Social Security is a promise we have made to the American people – if you work hard and play by the rules, the dignity of a secure retirement will be within your reach,” Craig said. “But taxing the very benefits American workers have earned after decades on the job diminishes our promise and threatens to undermine the financial security of retirees already struggling with rising prices.

“Eliminating this tax will help Social Security benefits go further and ensure that American retirees have all the resources they need after a lifetime of hard work.”




Assisted living quality of care study 
Raises concern among industry experts
By Kimberly Bonvissuto

A Texas assisted living quality of care study is drawing concern from at least one senior living association.

The University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing is partnering with the Texas Health and Human Services Commission to study quality of care and quality of life for the state’s assisted living residents. The study was mandated by the Texas Legislature in 2021.

Texas Assisted Living Association President and CEO Dana Martinez told McKnight’s Senior Living that although she knows that the University of Texas will do an “excellent job” in the mechanics of conducting the study, she is apprehensive about some of the data they will attempt to collect. Those worries center on questions related to preventable occurrences and any adverse outcomes related to issues, including medication errors, inappropriate use of antipsychotic medication, falls, inappropriate placement of a resident in a locked unit, and healthcare-acquired infections.



How to Downsize the Right Way


Whether you’re moving across the country or into a local senior center, follow these suggestions for a smoother transition.  

Downsizing sounds like a great idea … until you begin to wrap your head around the massive task of moving. The thought of leaving a longtime home, with all of its associations — the height chart on the laundry room doorframe, the grave of a beloved pet, even the chip in the sink from your oldest child learning to do the dishes — can be wrenching. Add to that the cost of moving, the burden of offloading half (or more!) of your possessions, and the project can quickly overwhelm even the most capable older adult.

Breakdown.....







Don’t Call Them Grandmas!–
The Enduring Appeal of the 
Senior Fashion Icon
By Kristen Bateman



Lately, it seems, everyone on the internet wants to get in touch with their inner octogenarian. People on TikTok are enamored with the coastal grandma effect—think: Nancy Meyers heroines—while others are trying the fancy grandma aesthetic—with guiding lights like Iris Apfel—on for size. And though the popular trends of coastal grandma and fancy grandma seem to be at opposite ends of the style spectrum, a defining element between the two is the idea of dressing for oneself, divorced from all trends and external influences. Stylish senior citizens are now an ideal, praised for their effortlessness just as much as they are for their eccentricities. The signatures they’ve built up over time are being fully celebrated to an extent we haven’t quite seen on this level before.

From Joan Didion’s unforgettable 2015 Céline campaign to newfound famed favorites like Baddie Winkle, chic elderly people have long played muse to the fashion industry. In 2008, Ari Seth Cohen started documenting the senior style set through his blog (and eventual documentary and books), Advanced Style. “Older men and women have always been my role models and the people I've looked to for creative inspiration, starting with my own grandmother who encouraged me to play in her and my grandfather's closets and fully express myself,” he says. At the time, Cohen was inspired to start his project because of his grandmother, but also because he kept seeing the influence of the chic older woman on younger people, such as the Olsen twins and Rachel Zoe–with the oversized sunglasses, supersized bags, and baggy, comfortable silhouettes. “They were doing that kind of upper east side old lady, upper west side old lady,” says Cohen. “But nobody was really talking about the people who were already defining that.”








To say I miss work would be a lie. The job was okay. It was the daily grind of commuting to and from the city I hated. After 911, I gave up driving to work, thinking public transportation would be easier and safer. I was wrong. Even with the rush hour traffic of NYC, I found driving to work more relaxing. I had a nice, comfortable seat to sit on and my favorite tunes on the radio. And, once you learn what roads to avoid and the best alternate routes to take, the trip took the same time as the subway. The only difference was the cost. Not so much for the gas but for the parking. Because of alternate-side-of-the-street parking regulations, finding a spot on the “right” side of the street was almost impossible. Therefore, so as not to be late for work, I had to pull into a parking garage. The cheapest one I could find (back in 2001) was $15 per day for 4 days (Wednesday, there were no alternate parking rules). That’s $60 per week as compared to $20 via public transportation. My comfort was costing me a fortune. So, back to the subway I went.

I collected my final paycheck just before Christmas of 2005 when I grudgingly began my life as a retiree. I was just 62 and not ready to hang up the spikes. I had hoped to work for at least another 10 years. But my best laid plans, along with my job, went elsewhere, and finding meaningful employment at my age was nearly impossible. Therefore, when my savings and my unemployment insurance ran out, I turned to Social Security to stop the bleeding. It was not as much as I could have received had I worked longer, but it was adequate. And there was the added benefit of not having to face the commute every day. I was, officially, retired. A title I keep ‘til this day. But such is not the case for many seniors, many older than me, who are still working regular nine-to-five jobs.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, about 19% of Americans aged 65 and older are now in the workforce, up from about 12% in 1996. That’s a lot of old geezers and geezeretts doing the daily grind. While there are no stats on how many of those folks have to work vs those that want to work, I’m sure most of those senior employees had expected to be retired by this time. And, at one time, leaving the workforce for a life of leisure was the norm. That’s when the basics, the things we depended on for living a relatively comfortable life, were still relatively cheap. The essentials like rent, food, utilities and clothing could be covered by most people’s retirement savings plus Social Security. But not anymore. Rampant inflation and unprecedented greed have made the middle-class retirement an almost unattainable dream.


An American household headed by someone aged 65 and older spent an average of $48,791 per year, or $4,065.95 per month.[1] Though they don’t say what makes up an average household, I’m guessing it means two adults. The average monthly benefit for retired workers was $1,666. That’s $833 per person. Doable, if both spouses are collecting their full retirement benefits. What that also means is that a person must work reach full retirement age, which is 66 if you were born from 1943 to 1954. The full retirement age increases gradually if you were born from 1955 to 1960 until it reaches 67. So much for retiring at 65. And let us not forget those figures are for the “average” household. If you, like me, had to stop working at 62 and whose savings were gobbled up by uninsured medical expenses, living off of Social Security today is impossible. In fact, the only way to do it is to be old, disabled and impoverished. Lucky me. I have all the qualifications. Sadly, it makes for a lousy retirement. 

I suppose I shouldn't complain. Unlike many people my age and in my circumstances, my needs, if not my desires, are met. I have a roof over my head, a warm bed, and three squares a day. Just like a con doing twenty to life in the state pen……....…

[1] Between 2016 and 2020 (the latest available numbers).







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NEXT BLOG THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 8, 2022



©2022 Bruce Cooper


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TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 6, 2022

Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com







2 residents of California assisted living facilities
Die after separate accidental poisoning incidents
By David K. Li


Two residents of Northern California assisted living facilities, operated by the same Kentucky-based company, died this week following similar accidental poisonings, officials and family said Friday.

Constantine Albert Canoun, a 94-year-old resident of the Atria Walnut Creek, died Wednesday after he swallowed cleaning fluid last week at the facility 25 miles northeast of downtown San Francisco, his son Dr. Cary Canoun told NBC News on Friday.

"It's like leaving a bottle of caustic cleaning agent in a daycare. It's the same kind of thing," the son said. "They don't know what it is and he didn't know what it is. He just saw something to drink and he drank it."



Two men sentenced to prison 
In nationwide scam targeting elderly


Two men who pleaded guilty to taking part in a nationwide racketeering scheme targeting the elderly, which took more than $300,000 from at least 10 San Diego County residents, were sentenced Wednesday to federal prison terms.

Timothy Ingram, 30, of North Hollywood, and 46-year-old Florida resident Joaquin Lopez were sentenced Wednesday for their roles in a scam that took over $2 million from more than 70 senior citizens across the nation.

In sentences handed down in San Diego federal court, Ingram received nine years in prison, while Lopez received a two-year term. 




Retirees want to go back to work -- 
But they're worried about this
By Jessica Hall


While more than three in 10 U.S. retirees say they would be motivated to rejoin the workforce if inflation continued to eat into their savings, 43% of retirees see their age as a barrier to getting a new job.

According to an American Staffing Association survey, the fear of ageism poses a barrier to retirees contemplating un-retirement. Overall, 14% of current retirees said they are open to or actively looking for work. 
“Ageism has always been a problem and it’s not going away. Even though we have laws to protect against this, human beings haven’t changed. There are misconceptions about older workers,” said Richard Wahlquist, president and chief executive officer of the American Staffing Association, an industry trade group. 




Zombie cells central to the quest 
For active, vital old age
By LAURA UNGAR


In an unfinished part of his basement, 95-year-old Richard Soller zips around a makeshift track encircling boxes full of medals he’s won for track and field and long-distance running.

Without a hint of breathlessness, he says: “I can put in miles down here.”

Steps away is an expensive leather recliner he bought when he retired from Procter & Gamble with visions of relaxing into old age. He proudly proclaims he’s never used it; he’s been too busy training for competitions, such as the National Senior Games.

Soller, who lives near Cincinnati, has achieved an enviable goal chased by humans since ancient times: Staying healthy and active in late life. It’s a goal that eludes so many that growing old is often associated with getting frail and sick. But scientists are trying to change that — and tackle one of humanity’s biggest challenges — through a little known but flourishing field of aging research called cellular senescence. 




Sedentary Older Adults Need Help
To EXERT Themselves
By Greg Laub



Sedentary older adults with amnestic mild cognitive impairment who engaged in regular exercise for a year maintained their cognition without decline, according to topline data presented during the recent Alzheimer's Association International Conference.

In this interview, Laura Baker, PhD, of Wake Forest University School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, discusses the EXERT trial and why implementation of this program is tougher than it sounds for patients.

Following is a transcript of her remarks:

We found that you can get people with mild cognitive impairment to stick to a 12-month intensive exercise program. And by intensive, I mean you have to work four times a week, you have to show up, you have to do this. We had, our final enrollment number was 296. So I'm very proud of that. It was just four short. But of our 296 people in 12 months, they completed 31,000 exercise sessions.







Can You Sue for Nursing Home Injuries 
Due to Falls and Other Accidents? 
By Richard Console, Jr.



Abuse and neglect at nursing homes are longstanding problems. Some of the most common nursing home injuries are also among the problems that can leave the families of residents with a lot of questions.

If you have a loved one who lives in a nursing home, you may already know to look out for signs of abuse, like unexplained bruises and cuts. However, when your loved one sustains an injury for which you are given a plausible explanation, like a fall or choking injury, you may not be sure what to think.

Could the injuries be a result of preventable “accidents” that happened because of a staff member’s negligence? Or are they true accidents that occurred in spite of the people caring for your loved one taking the proper precautions? Similarly, do common conditions like pressure sores indicate negligence, or do these issues just happen sometimes in environments like nursing homes?

Learn more  >> CLICK HERE





Despite the threat of rain and under mostly cloudy skies, and even though I prayed for a deluge, our annual Labor Day BBQ came off without a hitch Monday.
 
As regular readers of this blog know, I hate these BBQs. And with good reason. The food is usually boring and ill-prepared, and this year was no exception.  
 
On the menu were the usual fare. Burgers, hot dogs, potato salad (or pasta salad), and something that was supposed to be sausage and peppers. No chicken, no corn-on-the-cob and only a mixed fruit cup for desert.
 
The burgers, as expected, were overcooked and dry, as were the tasteless run-of-the-mill bun it was served on. The hot dogs were okay, except there was no sauerkraut available, only mustard packs. Rounding out the trio was what I guess was supposed to be an Italian sausage with peppers. Unfortunately, the sausage must have come from the part of Italy where seasoning was unheard of, as were the peppers which were not “peppery.”


The only thing more depressing than the food were the expressions on our residents’ faces. Most appeared annoyed that their routine was upset. Many seniors are slaves to a schedule. They find solace in awakening, dressing, getting their meds, and eating at the same time every day. Therefore, when that routine is skewed (even slightly) there is confusion and rancor. Many would have preferred a regular weekday lunch at the regular time. I miss my soup and cranberry/orange juice “cocktail” over ice.
 
Fortunately, the service was very good. The food, what there was of it, was handed out with surprising efficiency. This was good because I could eat quickly and return to my room, where I stretched out on my recliner and napped for the next 3 hours. Yes. I too, am a creature of habit. And I like it that way……….........








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NEXT BLOG WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 7, 2022



©2022 Bruce Cooper

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MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 5, 2022

Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com

HAPPY LABOR DAY



Top 10 Vacation Subscriptions 
May Save You Money


Catering to everyone from bargain hunters to the super-elite, travel subscription services help eliminate the drudgery of trip planning and often save money.  

Memberships, clubs, subscriptions … call them what you will, but the way we travel is changing. Anyone who has ever spent hours searching Kayak for the lowest rates or untold days figuring out how to accommodate Aunt Lucy’s hotel taste with Grandma Minnie’s disability and a defined budget for a family of four will appreciate the joy of turning over the planning to someone else.

And just think how happy you’d be if, on top of eliminating an unenviable task, the service could save you money, too! Unlike using a hotel chain credit card for booking rooms, a travel subscription can open up your options for various hotels and other elements of your trip. 




This park was ranked as the best national park 
For senior citizens and accessible travel
By Annie Mercado  
 
North Dakota: The Peace Garden State


At 72 years old, Roland Moore and his wife, Ann Truett, consider themselves avid travellers.

Moore said his love for experiencing different parts of the world began when he worked as an attorney for Pan Am and Eastern Airlines. With Moore’s flying benefits, the couple often took their children on trips.

During COVID, Moore retired and he and his wife currently reside in the Florida Keys during the winter and Woodstock, Vermont in the summer.



Here’s what a centenarian BFF 
Can teach you about life
By Rikki Schlott


Judy Gaman was a high-powered executive and self-described workaholic who rarely found the time to stop and smell the roses — until she met a centenarian who would change her life forever.

In her position as director of business development at a large medical practice, Gaman was tasked with writing health and wellness books. While working on her 2013 book “Age to Perfection: How to Thrive to 100, Happy, Healthy, and Wise,” she interviewed a number of centenarians hoping to glean their advice.

That’s when she met Lucille Fleming, a vibrant 100-year-old with an air of old Hollywood glamour residing in an assisted living center. The two would go on a book tour together — but that was just the start of their friendship.

“We became friends, and then we became best friends,” Gaman said. “‘Best friends’ just doesn’t even seem strong enough. My life was so dramatically changed by that almost four-year friendship with her.”



New York City wants its retirees back—
And the feeling is mutual. 
This new program matches jobs 
With experienced workers.
By Alessandra Malito


Workers are a hot commodity, and one of the most valuable types is the one who left the labor force, according to New York City’s local government. 

New York City’s Department of Aging launched the Silver Stars program, which aims to get retirees back in city jobs, and provide an opportunity to earn more money when they may have otherwise been stretching their dollars in retirement, said Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez, the department’s commissioner. The department hopes it will be a win-win: The city gets qualified workers, and retirees get another income source.

“They bring a treasure trove of knowledge. They have experiences we need in the workforce. And for the sake of the city, they know how to navigate city operations that others may not have or have a steeper learning curve,” Cortés-Vázquez said. “We wanted to create an opportunity so that the city wouldn’t have a brain drain and at the same time give opportunities for older workers to continue working.” 




Is Teeth Whitening Safe,
And Does It Work?


Nobody wants to be famous for their pearly yellows.

Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy

As we age, our smile begins to fade and looks a little dingy. Certain foods and drinks, as well as smoking, can cause discoloration affecting our once-gleaming grin.






Seniors, overcharged by billions on Medicare, 
Won’t see ’22 refund 


Tens of millions of seniors, hit by one of the largest increases in recent memory of their monthly Medicare charges due to a prescription drug regulatory debacle, will not see a penny refunded this year on what amounts to a federal overcharge.

This will occur, even though it was floated as a possibility and the cause of their health care coverage increase didn’t materialize.

The 2021 embarrassment for federal officials, instead, may turn into inflation anticipation, the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has said.


Read more  >>  CLICK HERE


Many younger baby boomers may 
Outlive their 401(k) savings. Here’s why
By Annie Nova


Older Americans may have a number of different goals with their retirement savings. But usually their main goal is the same: to make it last.

Unfortunately, many younger baby boomers and members of subsequent generations who don’t have access to a traditional pension could outlive the funds in their 401(k) accounts, a recent study from the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College found.

The economists compared the drawdown speeds between those with traditional pensions and those with only 401(k) savings accounts. Although most research on how long retirees’ money lasts is based on the former category, the majority of people now fall into the later



‘Startling’ lack of physical activity 
Found in assisted living pilot study

Residents of assisted living communities may not be physically active enough to maintain and improve their health, a pilot study across eight communities has found.

Investigators from the University of Michigan School of Nursing followed 54 residents to see how certain health and social factors affected their daily physical activity. Most study participants were quite sedentary and had low levels of activity, they reported. Sitting times were often greater than 30 minutes or an hour.

“What I was fascinated by is that 72% of time-accumulated stepping was in less than two-minute bouts,” said Janet L. Larson, Ph.D., RN, in a statement. “That was startling. They’re not walking for any length of time.” 



Use a Reverse Mortgage to 
Pay for Long-Term Care?

A reverse mortgage allows older adults to tap into home equity yet still live in the home. For unexpected health care expenses, it might be a good idea – or maybe not.

NEW YORK – Someone turning 65 has nearly a 7-in-10 chance of needing long-term care in the future, according to the Department of Health and Human Services, and many don’t have the savings to manage the cost of assisted living.

But they may have a mortgage-free home – and the equity in it, giving them the potential option of a reverse mortgage to help cover care costs.

Here’s how to evaluate whether a reverse mortgage might be a good option.




What Really Happens When You 
Donate Your Clothes—
And Why It’s Bad
By Taylor Bryant


Cleaning out the closet for most millennials goes like this: You slough through the items you haven’t worn in the past couple of months or longer. Pack them into a tote you don’t need but keep around perhaps for moments like this. Sort the pieces you think you can get some money from at Buffalo Exchange or Beacon’s Closet if you live in New York City. Then, you bring the rest to your local Goodwill or Salvation Army and donate it. The idea, of course, being that your unwanted pieces will go to someone locally who needs it. Afterward, you pat yourself on the back. Turns out though, the journey of a donated garment might not be as linear as you think it is.

What actually happens to your donated clothes is a very involved process with a lot of complicated layers, each worth taking the time to understand. Let’s start here: Contrary to popular (naive) belief, less than 20 percent of clothing donations sent to charities are actually resold at those charities. This infographic does a pretty good job of explaining it, but, generally, the other 80 percent is sent to textile recyclers who then determine the next cycle of the garment's life. Almost half of the donations will be exported and sold in developing countries, while the other half will be recycled into rags and household insulation. These actions are taken, primarily, because, as Elizabeth Cline, author of Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost Of Fast Fashion, explains, “There are just far more unwanted clothes in the United States than there is demand.” She goes on to outline: “Charities receive far, far more unwanted clothing donation than they could ever possibly sell in their thrift stores, so they have relationships with other textile sorting and exporting companies who can find a place to sell those clothes and find another market for them to go.”




Support For Legislation to Deliver Cost-Effective 
Assisted Living Care for America’s Veterans 



Argentum offered its strong support for the Expanding Veterans’ Options for Long Term Care Act, calling the “common sense” legislation a critical start to helping veterans access cost-effective assisted living care as the nation prepares for rapidly growing demand for assisted living and other long-term care options.

Argentum, the American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living, American Seniors Housing Association, and LeadingAge are working in conjunction to promote the veterans bill, with the coalition signing a joint letter of support to Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chairman Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Ranking Member Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), and U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.). The three lawmakers introduced the legislation last week.

“We strongly support establishing a pilot program as this legislation provides to help demonstrate the value of assisted living, so that more Americans can access this vital care. As our nation prepares for an exponential rise in the need for care services—with 10,000 Americans turning age 70 every day—we need to expand opportunities for our nation’s seniors to access their care,” said Maggie Elehwany, senior vice president, public affairs, Argentum.




Breakthrough finding could yield benefits 
For patients with diabetes
By Jacqueline Mitchell


About 422 million people worldwide have diabetes, and 1.5 million deaths are directly attributed to diabetes each year, according to the World Health Organization. Type 1 diabetes is a chronic condition in which the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas have been damaged and no longer produce insulin; Type 2 diabetes occurs when the body becomes resistant, or insensitive, to insulin. Both versions of the disease result in elevated levels of blood glucose—or blood sugar—which can lead over time to serious damage to the heart, blood vessels, eyes, kidneys and nerves if uncontrolled by treatment. Life-saving drugs and devices have been developed for patients with diabetes, yet many people still struggle with poor blood glucose control, leaving them at high risk for complications.

Now, endocrinologists at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) have identified a key enzyme in the synthesis of a new class of lipids (or fats), called FAHFAs, that are made in human tissues and have beneficial effects on insulin sensitivity, blood sugar control and other metabolic-related parameters in humans and mice. The discovery, published in Nature, opens the door to potential new treatments for types 1 and 2 diabetes.

"The long-term goal is to safely replace insulin-producing pancreatic beta cells in people with type 1 diabetes, but this would require a way to protect those cells from attack by the immune system," said Barbara B. Kahn, MD, who is vice chair for research strategy in the Department of Medicine at BIDMC. "We have shown that these FAHFA lipids protect beta cells from immune attack and metabolic stress. If we could increase FAHFA levels, we think this could be beneficial for both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Our new discovery is a breakthrough because, for the first time, we know how these lipids are made in mammalian tissues."




'Entitlement' Is Not A Dirty Word
By Robyn Pennacchia

There's a "Doctor Who" episode, in the first series of the revival, that takes place during World War II. And "no spoilers" for those who have never seen it, but it ends with the Ninth Doctor telling the British people, "You lot! Lots to do. Save the world. Beat the Germans. And don't forget the welfare state!"

On British TV, people are always praising the welfare state, and despite my own rather socialist bent and desire for Americans to have all of those things, it's always a bit of a shock to the system. Being an American, I'm just so used to hearing people use the term "welfare state" in a derogatory manner, to describe some state of endless and unknown horrors brought about by people becoming desperately spoiled and lazy and unable to fend for themselves as a result of having healthcare, food and shelter.

This weekend, I noticed a tweet from Occupy Democrats guy Peter Morely repeating a common center-left maxim: "Social Security and Medicare are NOT 'Entitlements'! We PAID for them." It got over 4,000 likes. It probably has more now. We can assume this was in response to Lindsey Graham's comments from last weekend about how, if Republicans take over in November, "entitlement reform" — by which he means cutting Social Security and Medicare — would be a major priority.



If Your Friends Don't Do This, 
It Could Be Hurting Your Brain
By Luisa Colón


Whether it's sitting down to a meal with a friend or going for a walk together, socializing is good for us—and that's not just based on the warm and fuzzy feelings we have after spending time with loved ones. "Social connections… not only give us pleasure, they also influence our long-term health in ways every bit as powerful as adequate sleep, a good diet, and not smoking," the experts at Harvard Health explain. "Dozens of studies have shown that people who have social support from family, friends, and their community are happier, have fewer health problems, and live longer."

However, a recent study revealed that the specific types of social interactions we have can make a difference to our brain health—and that one aspect of them in particular is crucial for maintaining our cognitive health. Read on to find out what your friends might be doing that could increase your chance of developing Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia.

Dementia isn't just common; it's increasing significantly each year. The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that approximately 55 million people are currently afflicted with dementia and estimates that by 2030, 78 million of us will be living with the condition. Spotting the early signs can help people obtain a diagnosis as soon as possible, which the Alzheimer's Association says is crucial in order to get the best treatment possible (although there is no cure for dementia).



This Common Belief About Dementia 
Was Just Proven Wrong 
By Abby Reinhard


There are countless things we believe we know about dementia—and that familiarity comes from the disease's unfortunate prevalence. In the U.S. alone, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that nearly 5.8 million people are living with dementia. Hearing about "dementia" or "Alzheimer's disease" sparks fears of lost memories, changes in mood and behavior, and increased risk as you age. But one common belief about dementia was recently dispelled by an important new study. Read on to find out what researchers have just learned about dementia risk factors.

Dementia and Alzheimer's disease, the most common form of the condition, are a hot topic for research, as no cure or effective treatment currently exists. Studies have identified a variety of risk factors for the disease, including snoring, hypertension, and even failing to brush your teeth.

With so much information available about dementia, it can be overwhelming to know how to best mitigate your chances of developing cognitive decline. But new findings suggest that you can cross one concern off your list—even if it's something you already had.




Two-thirds of older Americans see 
Health care costs as a financial burden
By Brad Dress

At least two-thirds of older Americans see health care costs as a financial burden, according to a new West Health-Gallup survey published Wednesday.

About 24 percent of Americans ages 50-64 say health care costs are a major financial burden, compared to 48 percent who say the costs are a minor burden, according to the survey.

Of Americans ages 65 and older, 15 percent call it a major burden and 51 percent a minor burden.




Most older adults believe they will need 
ADL assistance, but few plan for it


As older adults face the prospect of needing assistance with daily activities in the future, few have given much thought to how they will continue to live independently, according to a new AARP survey.

According to the results of the organization’s “Long-Term Care Readiness” survey, 68% of older adults believe they will need assistance with their daily activities at some point, but only 28% have given much thought to how they will continue to live independently if they need that assistance.

A recent National Poll on Healthy Aging found a similar lack of planning among older adults, presenting an opportunity for senior living providers. 

Attitudes on needing assistance varied by age in the AARP survey, with 74% of those 65 and older indicating they likely will need assistance, compared with 64% of respondents aged 50 to 64. The 65-and-older group also gave more thought to how they will live independently, with 31% indicating they had given it a lot of thought and 48% indicating they had given it some thought, compared with 25% and 47%, respectively, of respondents 50 to 64.




Willingness to Give Away Money Among Older Adults 
Linked to Cognitive Profile of Early Alzheimer’s 


To help protect older adults from financial exploitation, researchers are working to understand who is most at risk.

New findings from the Keck School of Medicine of USC, published this week in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, suggest that willingness to give away money could be linked to the earliest stages of Alzheimer’s disease.

Sixty-seven older adults who did not have dementia or cognitive impairment completed a laboratory task where they decided whether to give money to an anonymous person or keep it for themselves.

They also completed a series of cognitive tests, such as word and story recall. Those who gave away more money performed worse on the cognitive assessments known to be sensitive to Alzheimer’s disease.




How Older Adults Can Use Social Media 
To Market Startup Businesses
By Leslie Hunter-Gadsden


The means of marketing a business comes in many forms but with the number of times a day that prospective customers check their social media platforms, it is a good idea for small business owners to at least explore using social media to spread the word about their startup. Platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, and others offer business pages as an option to share content, beyond the realm of personal pages.

As with any marketing tool, there are do's and don'ts associated with social media; being unsure about which is which is why Patricia Wynn, owner of lifestyle assistant company Patricia Services LLC in Hillsborough, North Carolina, has yet to jump on the social media marketing bandwagon.

Wynn, 53, currently has an online presence for her company with a website through Vistaprint and a listing on Care.com. "I haven't taken the time yet to look deeply into setting up business pages on social media," Wynn said, "but when I get some free time, I will look at starting with the Facebook business page option. There is also an app called Nextdoor.com for local networking that I want to learn more about."




Medicare Spending Spikes for 
Dementia Diagnoses in Seniors

A diagnosis of Alzheimer disease or related dementia (ADRD) is associated with a large increase in Medicare spending, according to a study published online May 18 in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

Geoffrey J. Hoffman, Ph.D., from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and colleagues used the 1998 to 2018 Health and Retirement Study with linked Medicare claims to assess incremental quarterly spending changes just before versus just after a clinical dementia diagnosis (diagnosis cohort, 2,779) and among 2,318 individuals screened as impaired based on the validated Telephone Interview for Cognitive Status (impairment cohort).

The researchers found that overall spending was $4,773 per quarter, of which 43 percent was spending on hospital care ($2,048). Spending increased by 156 percent, from $5,394 in the quarter prior to diagnosis versus $13,794 in the quarter including the diagnosis. For the group with impairment, adjusted spending did not change from just before to after detection ($2,986 before and $2,962 after). There were no differences observed in incremental spending changes by sex, race, education, dual eligibility, or geography.




Light exposure at night linked to obesity, 
Hypertension and diabetes among older adults
Reviewed by Emily Henderson


In a sample of older men and women ages 63 to 84, those who were exposed to any amount of light while sleeping at night were significantly more likely to be obese, and have high blood pressure and diabetes compared to adults who were not exposed to any light during the night, reports a new Northwestern Medicine study.

Light exposure was measured with a wrist-worn device and tracked over seven days.

This is a real world (not experimental) study demonstrating the prevalence of any light exposure at night being linked to a higher obesity, high blood pressure (known as hypertension) and diabetes among older adults. It will be published on June 22 in the journal SLEEP. 




Boom in Tech Support Fraud 
Targets Older Adults


Unsolicited calls offering to fix nonexistent computer problems cheat people of millions of dollars

On a busy day last year, 61-year-old Neil (not his real name) got a call from a man who called himself "John" and said he was from Apple Tech Support. He claimed to have received a report that Neil's laptop was infected with a virus and offered to fix the security breach if Neil gave him remote access to his computer. Distracted by a dozen demands on his time, Neil agreed.

That was the beginning of a harrowing few hours with a practiced swindler. As John urgently warned that the virus threatened to corrupt and delete data and disrupt Neil's life, Neil grew increasingly anxious and agreed to pay the man on the phone hundreds of dollars to fix the problem.

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE


I'm taking Monday off for no other reason than
I feel like it.   


NEXT NEW BLOG TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 6, 2022



©2022 Bruce Cooper

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FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 2, 2022

Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com








Embracing aging may 
Help you live longer
By Mallika Marshall, MD


Those who embrace aging may live longer, healthier lives than those who dread getting older.

Researchers at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health looked at 14,000 adults over the age of 50 and found that those with the highest satisfaction with aging had a 43 percent lower risk of dying from any cause over a 4-year period compared to those less satisfied.

They also had a lower risk of diabetes, stroke, cancer, and heart disease; had better cognitive function; were more likely to engage in physical activity and less likely to have trouble sleeping; were less lonely and depressed, and were more optimistic with a greater sense of purpose.

The researchers suggest people reject negative stereotypes as they age, stay socially active, and try new activities or teach new skills to others.




Social Security could be a 'front-burner issue'
In November's election. 
How the results may influence the program
By Lorie Konish


As the November midterm elections approach, leaders on both sides of the aisle are trading barbs on one key program that affects millions of Americans: Social Security.

Over the weekend, President Joe Biden called out certain lawmakers on Twitter, including Republican Sens. Rick Scott of Florida and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, over their plans for the program.

Scott “wants to require Congress to vote on the future of Social Security every 5 years,” Biden tweeted. Meanwhile, Johnson “wants Social Security and Medicare on the chopping block every year,” the president said in a separate tweet.




4 Medications Doctors Will 
Never Prescribe Again
By Lauren Gray


When you entrust your health to a doctor, you might think the two of you are the only parties making crucial calls about your wellness. But the second your doctor takes out a prescription pad, that circle of trust expands to include pharmaceutical companies and regulatory agencies. Unfortunately, as we all know from high-profile recalls in which medications are taken off the market, the pharmaceutical industry sometimes makes mistakes. While all drugs come with risks and benefits, certain products have proven themselves to simply be too dangerous to take, causing avoidable—and irreversible—damage, or even death.

Meanwhile, many drugs with serious side effects remain on the market, or return after a brief recall. It takes a lot for drugs to be pulled from the shelves permanently—but it does happen. Read on to find out about four medications doctors will likely never prescribe again, and to hear the surprising stories of why they're no longer prescribed.

Vioxx is a COX-2 inhibitor that was once commonly used to treat arthritis. But in 2004, the drug's manufacturer, Merck & Co., had it taken off the market when news broke that it had been linked to 88,000 heart attacks between 1999 and 2003—38,000 of which were fatal. By the time it was pulled from the market, it was estimated that over 20 million patients had taken the drug. In 2007, Merck reached a 4.85 billion dollar settlement to resolve thousands of lawsuits—the largest drug settlement in history, according to NPR.




72 percent of middle-income older adults
Won’t be able to afford assisted living by 2033
By Kimberly Bonvissuto


More than 11 million older adults (72%) will not be able to afford assisted living by 2033, and they likely won’t qualify for Medicaid to pay their long-term care needs either, according to a new analysis conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago.

In an update to their “Forgotten Middle” study from 2019, researchers determined that 11.5 million older adults (72%) won’t qualify for public assistance and likely will be unable to pay for their long-term care needs on their own. In 2033, the investigators found, those older adults will have less than $65,000 in income and annuitized assets, the average amount needed to pay for private assisted living and medical care. Even if those older adults sold their homes, 6.1 million (39%) still would have insufficient resources to pay those annual costs, according to the analysis. 

“Without a comprehensive long-term care system in this country, for all but the lowest-income individuals, the costs of senior housing and caregiving support falls to seniors and their families,” lead author and NORC Senior Vice President Caroline Pearson said in a statement. “Sadly, most middle-income seniors may not have the financial resources to pay for the care they want and need.”



How to not fall victim to
'Distraction Thefts’ Targeting seniors
By Summer Lin


The Glendale Police Department is warning residents about “distraction thefts” targeting senior citizens.

Thieves typically come up with a ruse in order to approach victims, such as asking for directions or giving them jewelry, and then remove the victim’s jewelry while giving them a hug, police said in a Tuesday social media post.

Thieves have been targeting men and women who are walking alone and steal their jewelry while leaving them with costume jewelry or another item of little or no value, authorities said. This is either done by force or by sleight of hand, without victims knowing they had just been robbed.

The thieves often work in teams, with a male driver and a female passenger who commits the theft, police said. The thieves’ vehicle may contain multiple women or children. The suspects mainly stay in the vehicle and call the victim over to them. Common locations include grocery store parking lots and residential streets.








I have mixed feelings about Labor Day.
 
On the one hand, it’s a holiday. A day when working stiffs can stay home from their jobs and celebrate the jobs they are staying home from. Conversely, it signals the unofficial end of summer. The summer you were going to have fun, but somehow none of your plans worked out. The airline canceled your flight to San Francisco so many times; you lost three days of your two-week vacation. The vacation you were to tour the California wine country. And, when you finally got there, the car rental company didn’t have the convertible you ordered and substituted a camo-painted Humvee instead. But that’s okay, because the forest fires in northern California closed most of the roads, anyway. Yes, that summer.

Here at the A.L.F., Labor Day signals nothing. Since none of us works or goes to school, Labor Day is just another Monday. Another day of pills, grouchy neighbors and a half-hearted attempt at a barbecue.
 
“Oh, a barbecue”, you say. “That must be fun?” It would be if they did it right, which, of course, they can’t. It’s impossible to properly serve over 185 people using only two grills and seven or eight servers.
 
The burgers are cold and overdone. You can’t get them any other way. No lettuce or tomato. The cheese is put on the burger after it is cooked. It never melts. And the hot dogs aren’t much better. The rubbery tubes of suspicious meat are adorned only with mustard. No sauerkraut or relish. The only thing that may be okay is the chicken. If they don’t incinerate it. I’m not sure if they are having watermelon this year. It’s usually good, but the slices are embarrassingly small and mostly rind.
 
Are you getting the picture? I am not a fan of Labor Day. If they really wanted to honor workers, they should have “Labor Week.” Give everybody an extra paid vacation week to make up for the crappy two weeks they worked for.

Perhaps I’m being too picky. But I know what a good BBQ should be like. A few close friends, food cooked to order, plenty of cold beer and a giant wedge of cold watermelon (with the pits please) to top it off. Oh, I like to use real charcoal on a real grill. And if I want my burger dripping with juice and slightly pink inside, that’s my choice. I don’t recall inviting the DOH to my BBQ.
 
Yes. I’ll be at our BBQ on Monday. I’ll suffer through it all and hope that, with any luck, it won’t suck too much. Actually, if I’m really lucky, it will rain and they’ll cancel the whole mess. But don’t mind me. You have a great weekend and we’ll be back on Tuesday, September 6 with all new news. There will be an elongated WEEKEND edition to keep you busy………………..
 
 






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THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 1, 2022

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Want to Know Your Biological Age? 
Buyer Beware.
By Kerri Miller


No matter what age tests reveal, experts say the real key to longevity is exercise

When 66-year-old Maurice Frank of Asheville, North Carolina, opened the email last spring from InsideTracker, a health analysis and biological age testing company, he expected good news. "I thought I would come in three to five years younger," he said.  

Instead, when he saw the results, he blurted out a four-letter word, "which I normally don't do." His biological age was 3.3 years older than his chronological age. "I was shocked," he remembers. "I thought I was leading a very healthy lifestyle, with exercise and diet."

Read more  >> CLICK HERE 



Century-old mystery solved:
Elusive fever-generating neurons 
Have been found
By Peter Rogers



Infections are unpleasant. The crummy feeling is usually blamed on the pathogen attacking the body or the immune system attacking the pathogen. However, there is a third culprit pulling strings behind the scenes: the brain. 

For almost a century, scientists have tried to identify which parts of the brain are responsible for orchestrating physiological and behavioral symptoms, such as fever and appetite loss. These symptoms are usually good in moderation and can help at eliminating pathogens, but they can also cause a lot of harm. Thus, finding these elusive sickness-inducing neurons and uncovering how they are activated could open the door to making sickness a little less crummy.

Neurobiologists at Harvard University have cracked open that door, according to a study recently published in Nature. The researchers have identified a small group of neurons in the brain of mice that can induce symptoms of sickness, including fever, appetite loss, and warm-seeking behavior.




What is a normal heart rate?


The heart rate is one of the ‘vital signs,’ or the important indicators of health in the human body. It measures the number of times per minute that the heart contracts or beats.

The speed of the heartbeat varies as a result of physical activity, threats to safety, and emotional responses. The resting heart rate refers to the heart rate when a person is relaxed.

While a normal heart rate does not guarantee that a person is free of health problems, it is a useful benchmark for identifying a range of health issues.




Can Robots Save Nursing Homes?
By John Leland


Arshia Khan asked a group of older adults in Minnesota what they would like in a nursing home, and their answer surprised her. They wanted standup comedy, but not just any comedy: They wanted off-color jokes.

Dr. Khan, a professor of computer science at the University of Minnesota Duluth, programs robots to work in nursing homes.

On a March afternoon in her lab, surrounded by a dozen robots of different sizes and designs, Dr. Khan asked one to show off its stuff. The robot, a four-foot-tall white plastic figure named Pepper, with a tablet screen in its chest, blinked its eyes and wiggled its hips.






6 Superfoods for Diabetes
By: Kimberly Goad,  


When you're eating to keep diabetes in check, you're also eating to avoid other health problems. Most notably: cardiovascular disease. Almost 7 in 10 people with diabetes over age 65 will die from some form of heart disease. About 1 in 6 will die of stroke. That's why diabetes-friendly diets tend to be heart-healthy, too.

"Diabetes is more than a blood sugar problem,” explains nutritionist Jill Weisenberger, author of The Beginner's Guide to What to Eat with Type 2 Diabetes. “Having diabetes at least doubles the risk of having a heart attack, and it increases the risk of several types of cancer. That's why we don't have the luxury of taking a single-eye view of blood sugar only.”

The American Diabetes Association (ADA) doesn't endorse any one specific diet. What it does endorse are eating plans that emphasize well-portioned amounts of nutrient-dense foods that will help you lose weight or maintain a healthy weight; keep your blood glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol in your target ranges; and delay or prevent diabetes complications. The following six superfoods check off all those boxes.









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WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 31, 2022

Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com









Life expectancy dropped in 2020 
In every US state, mainly due to COVID


Every state saw a decline in life expectancy during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to new federal data published Tuesday.

The report, from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics, looked at death data for 2020, the last year for which complete data is available.

Results found that life expectancy declined in all 50 states and the District of Columbia from 2019 to 2020, mainly due to COVID and "unintentional injuries," such as drug overdoses, according to the report.




Biden Administration Plans for 
Booster Shot Campaign in September
BySharon LaFraniere, Noah Weiland


WASHINGTON — The Biden administration plans to offer the next generation of coronavirus booster shots to Americans 12 and older soon after Labor Day, a campaign that federal officials hope will reduce deaths from Covid-19 and protect against an expected winter surge.

Dr. Peter Marks, the top vaccine regulator for the Food and Drug Administration, said in an interview on Tuesday that while he could not discuss timing, his team was close to authorizing updated doses that would target the versions of the virus now circulating.

Even though those formulations have not been tested in humans, he said, the agency has “extremely good” data showing that the shots are safe and will be effective. “How confident am I?” he said. “I’m extremely confident.”




NYC ramps up nursing home 
Infection control, preps for next pandemic
By Carl Campanile



The New York City Health Department is developing a new program to bolster infection control practices in nursing homes in preparation for the next possible contagious viral outbreak, The Post has learned.

The department’s new effort also aims to keep emerging COVID-19 variants in check in the Big Apple’s 245 nursing homes and adult care facilities, many of which were hard-hit at the beginning of the pandemic in 2020.

The plan will focus on training and educating nursing care workers on the proper use of N95 respiratory masks and other personal protective equipment, according to a proposal sent to potential contractors who would set up the “respiratory protection program.” 




‘Way of the Future’: Senior Living Operators 
Envision Next Generation of 
Niche Communities
By Austin Montgomery


Senior living operators have long developed communities catering to specific groups with niche and affinity-based offerings. But as a new generation of senior living residents approaches the industry, they are adapting that model to meet the changing habits of prospective residents.

From changing habits to evolving social needs, operators are keeping up with new trends by catering to resident desires on a more personalized basis. One way to do that is to market communities that exemplify various lifestyles, from an emphasis on activism and volunteerism to more representation among cultural, social and religious groups.

In the past, senior living communities have catered to a wide number of groups, including former military members, artists and former professors. And that practice will continue into the future, especially as more baby boomers move into senior housing.






I was near death: My miracle cure was 
Guinness with raw eggs
By Erin Keller


You know the saying: A Guinness and a raw egg a day will keep the doctor away.

A retired pub landlady and former nurse in England credits her mixture of ingredients for keeping her alive — including the time she was hours away from the afterlife.

Maggie Ives, 78, was a resident of a sheltered living facility in Malvern, Worcester, when she fell and broke her pelvis in February.

“I can’t even tell you what hospital I was in,” she told South West ....









I’ve had my own credit card since I was 18. That’s so long ago, the bank that issued it is no longer in business.
 
I remember how important and grown-up I felt. That shiny, blue and white piece of plastic meant freedom and security. The freedom to go places and buy things and the safety of not having to lug around large sums of cash. I was also a new driver, and that card meant I would never run out of gas. I was also working full time and going to college at night, so carrying around lots of cash was not an option.

Over the years, I’ve had many credit cards, some with very high credit limits. And never in all of that time did I ever abuse that credit. I always paid my bills, on time, and in full. And I never maxed out a card. Therefore, you can imagine my surprise when an online purchase for $54 was declined because of “insufficient funds.”
 
Thinking that was an error on the vendor’s part, I placed a similar order with another vendor. Again, the insufficient funds message appeared.
 
WTF? That can’t be. I know how much unused credit I had remaining on that card and a measly $54 would not have maxed it out. It was time to call the bank.
 
After giving the automatic customer service line at the bank the last four digits on my card, I was directed to the “Fraud Division.” Two words you don’t want to hear when making an inquiry about your card.
 
My call was promptly answered by a live person who took me through the steps of verifying I was who I said I was. Upon verification, I was informed that there was “suspicious” activity on my card and they froze it. That was okay with me, but I wish they would have told me about it. My card was restored to normal, and I could complete my transactions with no problem. However, this incident made me aware of how vulnerable we are to chicanery and how much we (seniors) depend on our credit cards in our everyday lives.


 I do almost all of my shopping online. From underwear and socks to bagels and lox, my credit card provides me with items I want and need. And, as my mobility worsens, I will rely on online services even more. So, when it became impossible for me to complete a transaction, I panicked. What would I do if my credit was suspended for days, weeks, or even months? How would I survive using cash? I would have to arrange for transportation and spend time and energy walking the aisles of some supermarket and then I would have to schlep heavy packages back with me. Difficult to do with a cane in one hand.
 
Fortunately, for me, no actual unauthorized purchases went through and I corrected the problem without difficulty. But it proves one thing. No matter how careful we are with our information and even though we shop at only secured sites (https), someone can and will try to do something illegal. The best thing you can do to protect yourself is to check your credit card statements often as well as your checking and savings accounts. And report anything that doesn’t look right immediately…………………………
 
 







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TUESDAY, AUGUST 30, 2022

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10 Ways to Look Your Age and Love It
By Lois Joy Johnson



Not long ago my beauty routine included Botox and fillers, a frequently highlighted blonde lob, weekly salon blowouts and a regular mani-pedi. I also wore stilettos, trendy clothes, full makeup and shapewear, which had me at 50 not looking quite my age. As a beauty and fashion editor staying youthful and semi-flawless was my job, but somewhere between 50 and 60 my attitude flipped. I still love looking good (who doesn’t?) but now live happily ever after with my wrinkles, age spots and a few extra curves. Here’s how you can do it too.

1. Change the way you think about age

2. Get over the ‘age-appropriate’ label

3. Wear whatever you want

4. Cut bangs and smile more

5. Take a few calculated risks

6. Treat age as an invitation-only party 

See more  >>  CLICK HERE

More on this topic…

Do You Look Young Or Old for Your Age? 
What It Could Mean for Your Health 
By Sarah Jio

I got carded this weekend, which made giggly (I'm 31). I used to hate looking "young," but now as I inch into my 30s, I'm feeling just fine about hanging onto my baby face a bit longer. Do you look young or older for your age? Here's what it might mean for your health, say researchers ...

According to Danish researchers, if you tend to look young for your age, you're more likely to live a long life. The scientists looked at all sorts of predictors of a long life and found that the appearance of youthfulness was an important marker for longevity. (P.S. The research was conducted in Denmark where the cosmetic surgery rate is apparently very low, so that wasn't really a factor here.)

"It's probably easy to explain because people who've had a tougher life are more likely to die early--and their life is reflected in their face," said the lead researcher.



Pfizer says its RSV vaccine protects 
Against severe illness in older adults
By Berkeley Lovelace Jr.


Pfizer’s experimental vaccine for a respiratory virus called RSV was nearly 86% effective in preventing severe illness in a late-stage clinical trial of older adults, the company announced in a release Thursday.

The vaccine, called RSVpreF, was also found to be about 67% effective in preventing milder illness from the virus and caused no serious safety concerns, the company said.

The results were based on an early analysis of a phase 3 trial of 37,000 adults ages 60 and older, according to Pfizer. The protein-based vaccine is administered in a single dose.




High-Dose Flu Vaccine Promising for 
Mortality Benefits in Older Adults
By Ed Susman


A Danish feasibility study that tested a high-dose quadrivalent influenza vaccine versus a standard dose hinted at morbidity and mortality benefits, researchers reported.

In the DANFLU-1 study, there was a 48.9% reduction in the risk of all-cause mortality and a 64% reduction in the incidence of hospitalization for influenza or pneumonia for high-dose versus standard-dose vaccination. Also, hospitalization for cardiorespiratory complaints -- a combination of any cardiovascular or respiratory illnesses -- was reduced by 12% with the high-dose vaccine, according to Tor Biering-Sørensen, MD, PhD, MPH, of the University of Copenhagen.

Less than 1% of patients in both trial arms died in the 14 days after being vaccinated against influenza, and there were no significant differences in serious adverse events between the high-dose and standard-dose groups, he reported in a presentation at the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) meeting.




Market dip, record inflation make those 
Nearing Retirement, drawing Social Security 
Reconsider goals
By Michael Perchick


Sitting on a bench at Pullen Park, Richard Johnson took in the mid-week sunshine, with his grandchildren nearby. Despite economic pressures hurting millions of retirees, Johnson expressed confidence in his situation.

"(Retirement goals were) always very important. I always had a 401K, and an IRA. I tried to look after my retirement," said Johnson, who started saving when he was 32 years old.

Now 78, the former state trooper said his plan is managed by a financial advisor.

"It's hard to try and start retirement when you get older. Because you can't live off Social Security," Johnson explained, adding he is focused on having enough money to help with his grandchildren's education.






5 Tips For Wearing Heels Over 65, 
According to Doctors and Style Experts
By Michelle Cohen


After nearly two years of barefoot Zoom meetings, we're tiptoeing back into our professional and going-out wardrobes, shoes included. Footwear style has become more democratic in recent years–even before Covid–giving women far more leeway in choosing appropriate shoes for any occasion. Everything from boots to sneakers has found a place in fancy and corporate dress codes.

But while heels may no longer be de rigueur for looking put-together, they're still the preference of many women when they're looking for height and polish. However, those in their 60s and beyond may feel that they can't comfortably wear the higher-heeled shoes they favored decades ago. Luckily, this is not the case. Keep reading for top-notch advice from style and foot health experts on finding just-right heels that are comfortable and chic, so you can rock those heels over 65.

Sarah Roberts, beauty, fashion, and style expert and founder of A Beauty Edit, explains that women over 65 may develop plantar fasciitis, hip pain, and lower back pain from wearing heels. If you suffer from any of these but aren't willing to give up your heels, she says to "make sure that you choose the ones with a soft midsole, with shorter high-heels than you wore before."










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MONDAY, AUGUST 29, 2022

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Paxlovid Reduces Risk of COVID Death 
By 79% in Older Adults


The antiviral drug Paxlovid appears to reduce the risk of dying from COVID-19 by 79% and decrease hospitalizations by 73% in at-risk patients who are ages 65 and older, according to a new study published in The New England Journal of Medicine.

The pill, which is a combination of the drugs nirmatrelvir and ritonavir, received FDA emergency use authorization in December 2021 to treat mild to moderate disease in ages 12 and older who face high risks for having severe COVID-19, hospitalization, and death.

“The results of the study show unequivocally that treatment with Paxlovid significantly reduces the risk of hospitalization and death from COVID-19,” Doron Netzer, MD, the senior study author and a researcher with Clalit Health Services in Tel Aviv, Israel, told The Jerusalem Post.




Leisure Time Can Lower Risk of 
Early Death as You Get Older
By David Nield



It might be a good idea to pick up (or keep up) an active hobby as you get older: regular exercise such as jogging, swimming, or playing tennis can reduce the risk of death from any cause in older adults, a new study shows.

The more exercise the better, the research reveals, though even a small amount of activity is better than no activity at all, according to the data obtained from 272,550 adults aged between 59 and 82.

Across seven different categories – running, walking, cycling, swimming, racquet sports, golf, and other aerobic exercise – the team looked at metabolic equivalent of task (MET) hours, a standardized way of measuring an amount of energy expended.



New Study Finds 40% of Older Americans Don’t 
Understand Options for Medicare While Working

 As economic concerns about inflation and sagging retirement investments grow, individuals near retirement age are examining the prospect of working longer than they’d like – in part because they don’t understand their health insurance options as they get older, according to Allsup, a nationwide provider of disability representation, health insurance benefits and return to work services.

A new Allsup survey of 1,041 older American workers found that fully one-third of those nearing retirement age (62-64) who plan to keep working past 65, don’t understand they can sign up for what often is more affordable Medicare coverage, even while they’re still employed.

Among those already working past age 65, more than half (54%) reported maintaining their employee healthcare benefits was a factor in their decision to remain in the workforce. The survey was conducted by Allsup Benefits Coordination service, which assists workers in comparing and choosing from a range of health benefit options available to them, from employer group plans to Medicare and the Healthcare Insurance Marketplace.




Just 10 minutes per day of walking 
Could help older adults live longer.
By Deep Shukla



Physical activity can promote healthy aging, but chronic conditions and age-related decline in exercise capacity often prevent older adults from engaging in moderate or vigorous physical activity as recommended by health guidelines.

A new study shows that individuals ages 85 and older who walked for at least 1 hour a week had a lower risk of all-cause mortality and cardiovascular disease than their peers who did not engage in physical activity.

“Identifying the minimum amount of exercise that can benefit the oldest old is an important goal since recommended activity levels can be difficult to achieve. Our study indicates that walking even just one hour every week is advantageous to those [ages] 85 years and older compared to being completely inactive. The take-home message is to keep walking throughout life.” 






Eating fish and seafood reduces 
Risk of rheumatoid arthritis
By Dr. Priyom Bose


Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is one of the most commonly occurring illnesses in women and affects about 1% of the world’s population. This autoimmune disease causes chronic and systemic inflammation in the synovial tissue, pain, bone erosion, progressive destruction of cartilage, and eventually, permanent joint damage.

RA impacts the patient’s quality of life, increases healthcare use, and affects life expectancy. To date, the exact cause of RA is not well understood; however, researchers have indicated that certain genetic and environmental factors are associated with the pathogenesis of RA.








I must admit, an almost imperceptible chill ran down my spine the other day as I watched President Biden deliver a speech to a group of Maryland Democrats. The cause of those chills was how similar it was to all of those “impromptu” rallies Trump put together whenever he needed to push his agenda or deride a political opponent.

All the elements were there. The cardboard cutout- like, sign-holding, slogan-shouting staged figures behind the president, to the new, more forceful Joe Biden, things looked and felt similar to a MAGA rally. All one would have to do to make it a MAGA rally would be to stick red hats on those folks. 

Even the rhetoric sounded vaguely familiar. Like Trump, Biden took delight at hurling epithets at ultra Right Wing Republicans, calling them facists,

 He also borrowed a well-known tactic used by our former president. Make it sound like a personal victory. The only difference was the obvious lack of the word “I” when referring to the “Inflation Reduction Act.” Instead, he used the very un-Trump “We” praising his fellow Democrats for passing the act. An act, that not one Republican voted for.

“Building A Better America,” vs “Make America Great Again.”

The slogans may sound different, but actually they are almost identical in meaning and spirit. Both phrases imply America was great, somehow went astray, but (if you stick with us) it can be great again. Maybe the Democrats should give out blue BABA hats?

I have mixed feelings regarding what appears to be a new strategy for the Democrats. That is to be more like Trump ass-licking Republicans and inundate the American public with as much self-praise and promises for a brighter future as can fit into a TV snippet. And here is why I have cause for concern. Self promotion, boasting, making promises and directly attacking the other party is not the way Democrats operate. They have always taken a more refined approach using vague innuendos when referring to the opposition when speech making. Rarely did we see (seated behind the president) a handpicked audience brandishing professionally made signs spouting party-line slogans. Thank heavens, what we have not heard are outright lies, yet! How long will it be before a marginal Democrat running against an incumbent Republican skews the truth a little or refers to a “fake news” report?

While I am not totally comfortable with the “New, Improved” Democrats style, I’m not completely opposed to it either. Fire and brimstone have always worked to rile up a crowd. And pointing fingers and calling specific group names has worked well in the past to sway an on-the-fence electorate to your side. Hitler knew this. And so does our former president. But the Democrats must know when to back off. There is a thin line between finger pointing and a brown shirt wearing, goose-stepping band of crazies…………………..
 





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Doppelgänger Study Finds Lookalikes
May Have Similar DNA And Behaviors

BY RACHAEL FUNNELL



E
ver been told you have a doppelgänger? It could be that you had more in common with that person than looks, as new research suggests that people who share similar physical traits may have similar DNA.

The curious finding follows an analysis of some of the humans employed in Canadian photographer François Brunelle’s portfolio of human doubles, a project that’s gone on since 1999. Authors of the study, published in Cell Reports, compared the doubles' appearance, lifestyle, and genetic material; finding that similar DNA may connect people through behavior as well as their looks.

Using facial recognition algorithms, the researchers identified the most convincing among the doppelgängers. They then asked participants to complete a comprehensive biometric and lifestyle questionnaire and collected saliva DNA samples.




Drug Pricing Reform Finally Becomes Law:
What the Inflation Reduction Act
Means for Pharma



After many years of policy debate and attempts at proposed legislation, some of the most meaningful changes to the ways in which Medicare pays for prescription drugs – and the obligations of manufacturers selling drugs to Medicare beneficiaries - have finally come to pass. Many of the provisions which have become law appeared in previous bills including the Build Back Better Act.

The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 (IRA), was signed into law by President Biden on August 16, 2022. A full copy of the law can be found here. This article summarizes the main provisions of Subtitle B of the IRA at a high level. It should also be noted that many of the technical details regarding the provisions will be subject to rulemaking and the issuance of guidance documents by the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). Please contact the authors of this article should you have more detailed questions about the IRA and its provisions impacting drug pricing and Medicare reimbursement and coverage.

Medicare Prescription Drug Direct Price Negotiation



How to Care for Dyed Hair
After 50, According to Stylists

By JULIANA LABIANCA


C
olor-treated hair has different needs than non-color-treated hair. It requires specific shampoos and conditioners, hydrating haircare products, and, of course, more frequent visits to the salon. This is especially true after the age of 50. In our sixth decade, hair becomes more prone to brittleness, breakage, and frizz—and it can be more difficult than ever to keep grays a bay. However, there are a few tricks of the trade to maintain healthy, happy, and fully pigmented strands. Ahead, hair stylists tell us the best ways to care for dyed hair after 50. Keep reading and prepare to shock everyone at the salon—in the best way possible—on your next visit.

If there's one ingredient you should never use on colored hair—no matter your age—it's sulfates. Sulfates are cleansing agents that are commonly found in shampoos; however, they can strip dyed hair of its color.

"Along with being sulfate-free, women over 50 should make sure their shampoos and conditioners are free of other harsh ingredients," says Cindy Marcus, a professional hairstylist in Las Vegas and editor-in-chief of Latest Hairstyles. "You should look for products that say all natural or vegan to avoid these ingredients." She suggests the brands Aveda and Pureology for their color-safe formulations.




100 Rules To Live By
Dru Riley



1. “Focus on what you control.” — It’s unhelpful to dwell on things outside of your control.

2. “This too shall pass.” — “There are more things likely to frighten us than there are to crush us; we suffer more often in imagination than in reality.” –Seneca

3. “Not wanting something is as good as having it.” — If you don’t want something, you’re just as satisfied as someone who has it. Naval Ravikant says that “…desire is a contract that you make with yourself to be unhappy until you get what you want.”


4. “Perfect is a myth. Make a choice.” — Start and iterate.

5. “Use models.” — Don’t recreate the wheel. Learn from others and save time.

6. “Start super simple.” — Make the simplest version first. Don’t complicate things. Build an MVP. Or a concierge MVP.

7. “Read and listen to whatever you’re most interested in.” — We get more out of what interests us. Find something that you enjoy reading instead of struggling through books. This idea came from Shane Parrish.






Former judge: The majority shouldn’t get to
Decide who’s a person and who isn’t




On August 16, Andrew Napolitano — a former New Jersey Superior Court judge and former Fox News contributor who is currently a syndicated columnist — took to social media to discuss the problems he sees with the Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization — and it isn’t because he believes in a constitutional ‘right’ to abortion.

In a short video, he described the problems he has with the Supreme Court’s decision — and how he believes it is no better than Roe v. Wade because it still denies an entire class of human beings their natural, God-given right to life.

Napolitano stated in his video:

The core rationale of Roe is that the baby in the womb is not a person. Dobbs allowed the states to make that determination. So we all witnessed the spectacle… of the voters of Kansas voting by a 59 to 41 margin that the baby in the womb is not a person… If the baby in the womb is a person, then that personhood is not subject to legislative or majority vote. I mean, that’s how slavery came about, when the legislatures of the Southern states voted that Blacks were not persons, and the Supreme Court erroneously and lamentably upheld that.









Startling Connection Discovered Between
Diet, Eye Health, and Lifespan


Researchers have discovered a connection between diet, circadian rhythms, eye health, and lifespan in Drosophila.


Sometimes there are weird and unexpected health connections in the human body. For example, the gut microbiome — the trillions of bacteria and other microbes that live in our digestive tract — may have links to weight loss, Lou Gehrig’s disease, autism, COVID-19 severity, and drug safety and efficacy.

Now researchers have found another surprising connection. In an experiment on flies, they discovered that the aging process is driven by processes in the eye.

Scientists have demonstrated for the first time a link between diet, circadian rhythms, eye health, and lifespan in Drosophila. Publishing in the June 7, 2022 issue of the journal Nature Communications, the researchers from the Buck Institute additionally and unexpectedly found that processes in the fly eye are actually driving the aging process.




We Must End Ageism in
Cancer Clinical Trials
By Dany Habr


Cancer afflicts more older people than those in any other age group. In fact, over half of cancers diagnosed in the United States occur in those over the age of 65. That number is expected to reach 70 percent by 2030, as the population experiences an unprecedented boom of senior citizens. A growing number of targeted cancer therapies and immunotherapies are available today, but older people often don’t have access to these options, putting them at greater risk of dying from their disease. And even when they do have access to the latest medicines, these treatments, such as those for multiple myeloma, may not work as well in ethnic minority groups, especially in older patients. This gap in care for some older adults is even wider because of racial, economic, and geographic barriers.

If age is “just a number,” what is standing in the way of older people obtaining high-quality cancer treatment? One factor is the lack of clinical trial evidence that can help oncologists make informed decisions about the best possible treatment options. Historically, clinical trials haven’t told us much about how cancer treatments work in older populations. This problem arises primarily from continued underrepresentation of older adults in clinical trials. Studies show that people 65 and older living with cancer represent only about 40 percent of enrollees in registration trials of new cancer therapies; such trials are used to determine the benefit and safety of a potential new therapy and are a critical step in gaining approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. This imbalance is even starker for those 80 years and older, who represent only 4 percent of those included in registration trials. Consequently, treatment strategies are often based on data from younger people.

Cancer societies, advocacy organizations, and regulatory agencies have made several recommendations to address this growing problem. These include various recommendations from regulatory and industry organizations like the FDA and the American Society for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) for leveraging research designs to generate evidence from older people with cancer and giving the FDA more authority to require research involving older adults. Despite these steps, older populations are still underrepresented. A recent analysis of 302 industry- and non-industry-sponsored clinical trials showed that overall, the median age of participants was around 6.5 years younger than the median age of those who had the disease in the general population. The median age was even lower in industry-sponsored trials, further demonstrating the key role that the pharmaceutical industry has in ensuring older people are accurately represented in future clinical trials.




Older adults more likely to have multiple
Health ailments than prior generations

Later-born generations of older adults in the United States are more likely to have a greater number of chronic health conditions than the generations that preceded them, according to a study conducted by Penn State and Texas State University.

According to the researchers, the increasing frequency of reporting multiple chronic health conditions -- or multimorbidity -- represents a substantial threat to the health of aging populations. This may place increased strain on the well-being of older adults, as well as medical and federal insurance systems, especially as the number of U.S. adults older than age 65 is projected to grow by more than 50% by 2050.

Steven Haas, associate professor of sociology and demography at Penn State, said the results fit with other recent research that suggests the health of more recent generations in the U.S. is worse than that their predecessors in a number of ways.



The #1 Worst Eating Habit for
Arthritis Symptoms, Says Dietitian
By Samantha Boesch


Arthritis can be an extremely painful and uncomfortable condition to have, and this is especially true when your symptoms begin to flare up. While there are many things that can contribute to flare ups, your daily eating patterns can be one of the main factors.

"People who suffer from arthritis live with the body in an inflammatory state," says Amy Goodson, MS, RD, CSSD, LD author of The Sports Nutrition Playbook and member of our expert medical board, "so it's important to note that there is not one food or beverage that causes arthritis or arthritis flare-ups. It's more about your overall eating pattern and the foods you eat regularly."

And according to Goodson, one of the worst eating habits for arthritis symptoms is to eat refined or processed sugar on a regular basis.

"Refined or processed sugars top the charts when we talk about inflammation," says Goodson. "Processed sugars can prompt the release of cytokines, which act as inflammatory messengers in the body. So, when eaten regularly, this could exacerbate inflammation or arthritis symptoms."



Medicaid Weighs Attaching Strings
To Nursing Home Payments
To Improve Patient Care
By Susan Jaffe



The Biden administration is considering a requirement that the nation’s 15,500 nursing homes spend most of their payments from Medicaid on direct care for residents and limit the amount that is used for operations, maintenance, and capital improvements or diverted to profits.

If adopted, it would be the first time the federal government insists that nursing homes devote the majority of Medicaid dollars to caring for residents.

The strategy, which has not yet been formally proposed, is among several steps officials are considering after the covid-19 pandemic hit vulnerable nursing home residents especially hard. During the first 12 months of the pandemic, at least 34% of the people killed by the virus lived in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities even though residents of those facilities make up fewer than 1% of the U.S. population.




Social Security Reform Plan
Gets a Big Endorsement

By Stephen Silver


Last week, a group of senators introduced an ambitious plan to keep Social Security solvent for seventy-five years while also increasing benefits. The bill is called the  Social Security Expansion Act, and its backers include prominent senators Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA). The introduction came after the release of this year’s Trustees Report which found that Social Security will be able to pay out full benefits through 2034, a year later than projected in last year’s report.

“At a time when half of older Americans have no retirement savings and millions of senior citizens are living in poverty, our job is not to cut Social Security,” Senator Sanders said in a statement announcing the bill. “Our job must be to expand Social Security so that every senior citizen in America can retire with the dignity they deserve and every person with a disability can live with the security they need. And we will do that by demanding that the wealthiest people in America finally pay their fair share of taxes.”

Now, the Sanders-Warren proposal has a key endorsement. Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR) introduced a version of the same bill in the House of Representatives which The Senior Citizens League, a group that advocates for seniors and regularly issues reports about how inflation is affecting Social Security recipients, has backed.




Walking for exercise could help people with
Knee osteoarthritis to prevent frequent knee pain

Reviewed by Emily Henderson

In a study published in Arthritis & Rheumatology that included individuals aged 50 years and older who had knee osteoarthritis, those who walking for exercise were less likely to develop frequent knee pain.

The study, which included 1,212 participants, also found preliminary evidence that walking for exercise might modify some of the structural effects of osteoarthritis on the knees.

The Center for Disease Control recommends regular physical activity like walking for exercise to reduce the risk for serious health problems like heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and some cancers. Based on our findings, walking for exercise could also help people with knee osteoarthritis to prevent regular knee pain and maybe additional damage to the joint."




Can seniors donate blood?
Risks and benefits of blood
Donation for older adults



While World Blood Donor Day is celebrated this year on June 14, the effort to raise awareness of this simple life-saving gesture is ongoing year-round.

“Donating blood is an act of solidarity,” the World Health Organization exclaims. “Join the effort and save lives.”

Yet, many questions and incorrect assumptions about the process and eligibility often cloud the donor experience and may lead many people to hesitate to do their part. One of those common questions: Can older adults still donate blood?



Alternative Pets For Older Adults
That Aren't Cats Or Dogs



Having a four-legged or winged companion isn't just for the young and working. In fact, according to new findings by Michigan Health, 55% of adults ages 50-80 have a pet. However, the same study has shown that 6% of those adults said they had injured themselves while walking their dog or doing other aspects of pet care. Having a pet can be beneficial for older adults, but it's also important to pick the right type of pet that will suit one's lifestyle and activity levels. That being said, here are three pet options for seniors who are looking for a furry companion, but don't necessarily have the energy to take care of cats and dogs.

Fish

When upkeep and costs are at a minimum, these scaled companions can provide an easy-to-care option for seniors, especially for those with mobility issues. While small freshwater fishes may require regular feeding along with special filters and lighting, once everything is set up, the overall upkeep of a fish is minimal, especially when automated feeders are utilized. Another benefit of adopting a fish is they do not require excessive amounts of cleaning and do not need a lot of space. Just simply observing an aquarium helps reduces anxiety by a measurable amount and lower heart rate among older adults by 5 to 6 beats per minute, according to Vivo Fish.

Hamsters

Hamsters are one of the more underappreciated pets, especially in comparison to their more popular rivals--cats and dogs. But for older adults who are looking for a low-maintenance, furry companion that does not require obedience courses or litter box training, hamsters may be just the best option for them. How to play with a hamster is one of the most common questions among new pet owners, but there are endless playtime options available like exercising in a ball or running on their wheels. On top of being low-maintenance, studies have shown that owning a hamster can help to decrease stress, and they're perfect for busy seniors since they don't need constant attention. These cuties are a joy to watch because of the fact that they're so tiny and each hamster has its own unique personality.



10% of Americans over 60 have
Experienced some form of elder abuse



The National Council on Aging says one in 10 Americans over the age of 60 has experienced some form of elder abuse.

At the Lake Charles senior center, Bridget Joseph works with older people everyday. She said it breaks her heart to hear cases of them being mistreated.

“It’s unfortunate to find out that in our community, we have elderly people that are being misused, mistreated, forgotten about, and we don’t want that to happen,” Bridget Joseph with the Lake Charles Senior Center said.

In 2021, the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office had 33 cases of cruelty to the infirmed. So far, 7 cases have been reported in 2022. That’s not counting financial abuse cases.



Older Adults Sacrificing Basic Needs
Due to Healthcare Costs



WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The health problems Americans start facing when they reach 50 years of age are compounded when the high cost of healthcare prevents them from seeking treatment, taking their prescriptions or leading an otherwise healthy lifestyle. A survey of U.S. adults conducted by West Health and Gallup explored the various ways in which healthcare costs are affecting Americans aged 50 and older today.

The study shows that at least two-thirds of older Americans consider healthcare costs to be at least a minor financial burden. When looking at inability to pay for care, four in 10 report they are concerned; smaller but notable percentages are not seeking treatment, are skipping prescribed medicine or cutting back on basic needs such as food and utilities to pay for healthcare. These problems are generally worse for adults aged 50 to 64, as most do not yet qualify for Medicare, but they also affect those 65 and older

Older Americans at Risk Due to Cost of Healthcare

More than a third of adults 65 and older (37%) are concerned they will not be able to pay for needed healthcare services in the next year, according to the most recent West Health-Gallup survey. The situation is even worse for older Americans who are not yet eligible for Medicare, with nearly half (45%) of adults aged 50 to 64 reporting the same concern level. This puts nearly 50 million adults aged 50 and older at risk for more severe illness and even death due to the cost of healthcare.




Survey finds elderly happier, more content and
Healthier feeling than you might imagine

By Lesly Gregory


The “Second Half of Life Study” surveyed 2,500 people from age 18 into their 90s. It was carried out by National Geographic and AARP in January 2022 to explore how Americans view aging. A second part of the study involved 30-minute follow-up interviews with 25 adults 40 and older.
ExploreHigh Museum of Art relaunches Lifelong Learning initiative for adults 50 plus

“Happiness in older age isn’t about wealth, beauty, or any of the other standards typically associated with youth-driven pop culture,” the study authors wrote on AARP. “As people age, an optimism and contentment emerge in parallel with an alignment of expectations and realities.”

While many Americans may associate the beginning of a decline in satisfaction with life with their 60s — as people approach retirement age — the survey found one measure that suggests it is much later today.

In the survey, 70% of people 80 and over said they would be likely to take a “longevity” pill that extended their life by 10 years — even if it did not slow down the aging process. But that’s actually the low point:



New Study Shows Stress May Help
Prevent or Even Reverse Alzheimer's

By Susan McDonald


Stress: Its potential to cause physical harm conditions us to avoid it whenever possible, but new research shows that some level of stress may actually help ward off and perhaps even reverse Alzheimer’s disease.

Alzheimer’s, which affects 6.5 million Americans age 65 and older, is characterized by an unhealthy buildup of misfolded proteins like beta-amyloid and tau in the brain. Folding, a process that makes proteins biologically functional, is typically monitored by healthy brain cells that are also charged with destroying misfolded proteins. Errors in this neurologic process can result in an unhealthy buildup of misfolded proteins that, in turn, can cause neurodegenerative conditions like dementia and Parkinson’s disease.

A recent article in the publication Nature detailed how researchers from the U.K. Dementia Research Institute at Cambridge University discovered a way to add stress through heat shock therapy to other parts of affected brain cells so they can address harmful protein misfolding and any resulting buildups.



New Aging Survey Shows It’s
Time to Throw Out Stereotypes

By Sari Harrar

In late 2021, journalists at National Geographic magazine and AARP discussed working together to explore how Americans perceive aging as we emerge from the COVID pandemic. That began a research collaboration focused on asking people like you questions that would probe the full breadth of aging issues — from health and finances to attitudes about happiness, home, optimism and even dying.

To make the study as useful as possible, we posed the same questions to Americans from age 18 into their 90s, to see how opinions vary over the arc of adulthood. More than 2,500 people participated, representing the full range of America’s backgrounds, demographics and ethnicities. Another 25 adults 40 and older participated in in-depth interviews.

Many of the often surprising results of the AARP–National Geographic “Second Half of Life Study” are in your hands. No single sentence can capture the gist of all that people told us, but we can say with confidence that most prevalent opinions and stereotypes of aging were proven wrong.  

Learn more  >>  CLICK HERE


Record high inflation forces some older
Americans to make tough financial choices

By Lorie Konish


For many older Americans, record high prices are jeopardizing their financial security just as they approach or live in retirement, according to a recent survey from The Senior Citizens League, a nonpartisan senior group.

The survey was conducted online in the first quarter and included 3,056 participants, 96% of whom rely on Social Security as a source of income.

Seniors are spending savings, taking on debt

Half of respondents ages 55 and up have spent emergency savings in the past 12 months in response to high inflation, the survey found.




Arthritis treatment:
No evidence that diet helps

By Annie Lennon


Researchers conducted a review of studies analyzing the effects of diet on rheumatic and musculoskeletal conditions.

They found that judging by current data, no single dietary intervention has substantial benefits for people with these conditions.

They also noted that most studies included in their review had poor quality data.

They thus recommended that further studies improve on methodological and reporting standards.

Rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases (RMD) are a range of conditions that affect peoples’ joints, cause pain, disability, and reduceTrusted Source health-related quality of life.

While some RMDs, such as rheumatoid arthritis, have effective pharmacological treatments to limit disease progression, for others, such as osteoarthritis, existing medications can only alleviate symptoms.



Aspirin Use Linked With Increased
Depression Risk in Older Adults



An umbrella review investigating factors associated with depression in older adults found convincing evidence that acetylsalicylic acid (asprin) use, as well as living 80 years or more, increases depression risk. Researchers published their findings in the Journal of Affective Disorders.

“Identification of the potential factors that increased or decreased the risk of depression could be important to provide prevention strategies,” researchers wrote.

The umbrella review included 25 studies, of which 22 were meta-analyses and three were qualitative systematic reviews. In all, the studies spanned nearly 1.2 million participants ages 60 and older and 82 unique factors that affected depression risk in the older adult population.



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This Is the No. 1 Way to Live "Longer
And Healthier," Doctor Says

By Lauren Gray


Add years to your life by doing this for just 11 minutes a day.

If you're aiming to live a long life, the quality of your years is just as important as the quantity. After all, living longer on its own can be a blessing or a curse—and living a long, healthy life is the ultimate prize.

That's why one geriatrician (a doctor specializing in the health of seniors) is sharing a crucial piece of information about the single best way to live "longer and healthier." While many factors contribute to the complex metrics of health and wellness, he says this one factor is "the most important thing" in order to live a long life free of disease or disability.

Read on to learn the number one way to extend and improve your life, and to find out why it's especially important to do right now.




How urban design can fulfill senior
Living needs for baby boomers

By Lois A. Bowers


The influx of baby boomers approaching the age where they are ready for a new phase of life is not about size alone; it’s also about influence, including that generation’s widening effect on senior housing as a keystone of urban design.

Today’s senior housing developments are being molded by several characteristics that are unique to this age cohort:

1. Baby boomers want to stay engaged in their communities and with their professions and pursuits.

This generation has been redefining retirement since the oldest members hit their mid-60s approximately 10 years ago. Today, baby boomers are aged 57 to 76. Many want to stay connected to their social and/or professional communities and plan to remain both active and productive, whether by volunteering or working part-time.



What to do with your 401(k)
In a bear market


Amid recession fears in bear market, experts say 401(k) investors should think long term.

Americans are free to enjoy their golden years in any state they please, but a new study found that the ideal places to live on a retirement budget are in the South or the Midwest.

Florida, Georgia, Michigan, Ohio and Missouri are the top five best states to retire when factoring in a range of criteria, according to Bankrate. The most affordable states to retire are Michigan, Tennessee, Missouri, Mississippi and Kentucky.




Diabetic Neuropathy Treatment
By Heidi Moawad, MD


If you have type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes, managing your blood sugar can help you minimize the nerve damage of diabetic neuropathy. However, this complication can develop with long-term diabetes even when blood sugar is well controlled.

If you already are experiencing signs of diabetic neuropathy, it’s crucial that you get proper treatment to help prevent the progression of this nerve condition. Additionally, diabetic neuropathy can cause many complications, including falling, malnutrition, infected wounds, and more.

This article will cover the treatment of diabetic neuropathy. Each of the different effects of diabetic neuropathy requires treatment with specific lifestyle measures and medical therapies.






8 Warning Signs of a 'Silent' Heart Attack
That Are Easy to Overlook

By Rachel Nania



Symptoms can be subtle, but that doesn't mean they're any less dangerous

Despite its depiction in the movies, a heart attack doesn't always produce pain or pressure so intense it causes a person to clutch their chest and collapse to the floor. Most people who have a heart attack experience a much less dramatic version. And some have no symptoms at all — or symptoms that are so subtle they're mistaken for something else entirely.

These so-called silent heart attacks account for about 20 percent of all heart attacks, according to 2022 statistics from the American Heart Association. Some experts estimate that percentage is even higher — closer to 50 percent.

Learn more  >>  CLICK HERE






A small group of us here at the A.L.F. decided we needed a break from a month of really poor meal offerings from our kitchen and treat ourselves to some proper food cooked by professionals who know what they are doing. We decided on Chinese food delivered from one of our local restaurants. Over meals of chicken chow mein, beef and broccoli, sweet and sour pork and my favorite, orange beef, the dinner conversation turned to the importance of food in everyone’s life and how it is more about just filling one’s belly.

Since ancient times, friends and family have gathered to discuss, not only their own issues but, the important issues of the day. And they did this over food. Good food.

Business deals worth millions of dollars often begin with dinner at a fine restaurant.
 
Government leaders use state dinners to cement or repair relations with other nations.
 
Whether it be the start of a great love affair or a brief assignation, food is the other “person” in the room. The food served and the cooking and presentation of that food are as important as the conversation which surrounds it. And for some, what we eat can bring back memories of good times past, lost loves, ill-spent youth and friends and relations long passed. And, while all of that could be the basis for some interesting conversation, I think I can say, without equivocation, most of our residents don’t come to meals because they look forward to the food. For many, it’s a ritual that must be performed to keep one alive and to avoid the contrived concern of management. “Eat or we’ll make you eat.” So, they come to the table, order what’s on the menu, pick at the food when it’s served and walk away with most of the meal left on the plate. The food component is less of a purveyor of fond memories and more of an obstacle.

So, what’s wrong? The management, the food service director, our “dietitian” and even the state have failed to understand that food to the elderly is more than just keeping people alive. They do not understand that dinner with friends is as important as any other activity here. Many residents no longer receive visits from friends or relatives. All they have to keep them company are memories, many of which are based on those times when having dinner with their loved ones was the most important time of the day. And, for many, they were the cooks and meal-planners for those times. They knew what everyone liked and how they liked it cooked. In their own right, many could have easily been professional chefs. But that wasn’t the reason to cook and cook well. The reason was love. And we knew it too.
 
As young kids, we may have grumbled about what was on our plates. But as we matured, we understood the thought and skill needed to prepare the food we ate, as well as the person who made it. That feeling is lost here. They just don’t get it. We are thought of more like welfare recipients who should shut up and be glad they are feeding us than human beings who have lived unimaginable lives, good and bad, and whose souls need nourishment perhaps more than their stomachs.

As a long-time resident here, I have seen many chefs come and go. Very few understood the value of a decent meal for the psyches of a group of senior citizens who need to live out their remaining years in peace and comfort. We deserve the food to be as good as the healthcare professionals we rely on and the medicines they prescribe………………..
 








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America's nursing homes
At a crossroads

By Emily Mongan


America’s nursing homes are at a crossroads. Operators are challenged by a history of insufficient funding under the Medicaid program and eroding Medicare payments. Coupled with long-term care facilities being ground zero for the COVID pandemic and the public being reticent to place their elderly parent in such a facility, skilled nursing homes are facing an uphill battle. It is time to rethink the structure of the senior care industry in the U.S.

The partnership between government and nursing home operators is failing. The Biden administration has called for improved quality and better outcomes from the long-term care operators across the country, but with decreased funding from programs like Medicaid and Medicare and high levels of preventable readmissions of these senior patients to hospitals, costing payors and patients an additional $10+ billion annually, we are left with a system crying out for help.

The incentives in the long-term care system are wrong. Increased length of stay and increased volumes are rewarded, while quality and positive patient outcomes receive much less attention. While there are annual inspections by health departments, absent the right positive incentives, operators risk fines and forced closures. Instead of rewarding providers for high quality and positive outcomes, regulatory bodies are focused on punishment.




Maximize Your Credit Card
Rewards Points to Fight Inflation

By Donna Fuscaldo,  


With prices soaring for everything from food to utility bills, consumers are looking for ways to save. Increasingly they are turning to credit card reward points to fight inflation.​

It makes sense, given America's penchant for credit cards. According to a recent Wells Fargo survey, 71 percent of people living in the U.S. have a credit card that offers cash back or rewards. Of those cardholders, nearly half (49 percent) are relying on rewards points to offset some of the costs of everyday purchases.  ​

But they aren’t doing it as efficiently as they could. The same Wells Fargo survey found only 53 percent of rewards cardholders focus on high-value categories when they use their card, while 38 percent have not cashed in their credit card rewards or offers this year. ​

Read more  >> CLICK HERE


The Importance of Indoor
Air Quality in Care Facilities

By Tony Abate

The importance of indoor air quality (IAQ) has been at the forefront of many people’s minds in the last couple of years, given the severity of the pandemic and pollution in major cities. For those living in assisted living and memory care facilities, the need for proper ventilation and high-quality IAQ was a foundation of these properties far before the pandemic, but the need for well-supported infrastructure and comprehensive building systems has become all the more crucial now.

Just as COVID-19 affected everyone, so does air pollution and other airborne bacteria and hazards. Yet, the effects of these factors are much more severe in the elderly because they are more susceptible and at greater risk for health issues relating to poor IAQ. This is important to consider and mitigate in assisted living facilities as poor air quality can lead to, and worsen, chronic health conditions, such as lung disease, asthma, pulmonary disease, diabetes, heart disease, and other serious problems. Proper IAQ and ventilation are in turn smart and simple strategies to implement into properties to reduce the risk of health conditions and to support the safety and well-being of those in assisted living or memory care facilities.

In these facilities, residents are more at risk to serious illnesses and air-borne pathogens, such as MRSA and Norovirus. Indoor air purification systems can assist in preventing contaminants in a space, and have the potential to drive better health, wellness, and improved care with cleaner and healthier IAQ. Additionally, IAQ technologies also act to filter contaminants that prevent unwanted odors, which is of particular importance in a residential community facility. In this way, new technology can drive multiple solutions and new amenities for facilities, while improving the resident experience.




Eye care: Why are seniors more likely
To suffer from eye diseases

By Dr. Manish Nagpal


As people grow old, the risk of particular eye diseases and conditions increases significantly and becomes only worse with time.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), nearly 285 million people globally are visually impaired. Almost 82% suffering from blindness are aged 50 or above.

In fact, over 137 million Indians have near vision loss, and 79 million people suffer from impairment. And, understanding the warning signs of age-related eye issues and seeking professional care can safeguard our vision.








DigitalC helps older adults
Overcome tech barriers

By Chris M. Worrell



CLEVELAND, Ohio -- For many older residents of Greater Cleveland, the digital divide can feel like an overwhelming chasm. DigitalC, a Cleveland nonprofit, is working to ensure that older adults have the technological skills they need to re-enter the workforce.

The current round of free trainings, each of which lasts five weeks, is taking place at the DigitalC “tech hive” from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesdays. The most recent session began July 12 and has a dozen participants.

All individuals enrolled in the training will have the opportunity to take home the computer they learned on at no charge after their Aug. 9 graduation.







8 Best Checking Accounts for Seniors
By Karen Doyle



Senior citizens often get discounts and deals, and why shouldn’t they? Retirement often means a reduction in income, so a bargain is always appreciated.

Some banks cater to this demographic by offering checking accounts designed specifically for senior citizens. Other banks, while they might not have a distinct offering for those over 60, have checking accounts that make sense for seniors who may have significant investment assets, or for those who are concerned with getting by on less income in retirement.

Here are the best checking accounts for seniors.
Checking Accounts Designed for Seniors

Some banks have checking accounts they designate as being for seniors. They typically have the features they think senior citizens will want, like no monthly fee, free checks and free paper statements. Here are some checking accounts that were designed for seniors.









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WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 24, 2022
Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com








2 Big Reasons Social Security
Is Failing Seniors

By Katie Brockman


Social Security benefits are a lifeline for millions of retirees. In fact, around 23% of workers expect their monthly checks to be their primary source of income in retirement, according to a 2022 report from the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies.

However, Social Security isn't as reliable as it used to be, and it's becoming more difficult for retirees to depend on their benefits. There are two key ways that the program is failing seniors, and if you're already retired or planning to retire soon, you may need a backup plan.

1. Benefits are failing to keep up with inflation

Most years, seniors receive a cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, to help their benefits keep up with inflation. That adjustment generally falls between 2% and 4%, but last year, retirees received a whopping 5.9% COLA to account for surging inflation near the end of 2021.




Food Insecurity May Be
Closer Than You Think

By Randi Mazzella



Even in apparently affluent areas, some older adults lack reliable access to sufficient quantities of nutritious food

My teenage son and I volunteered together for a local Meals on Wheels program in the summer of 2020, when COVID had caused an uptick in the need for home meal delivery services and a decrease in volunteers.

We were assigned a route of eight clients, all of whom lived within several miles of our house. My son was initially surprised by the number of older adults in our community who relied on this service.

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE


Money Follows the Person program limits hinder
Senior living’s ability to serve older adults

By Lois A. Bowers

Industry associations representing senior living providers say they support the federal government’s Monday announcement of the expansion of Medicaid’s Money Follows the Person demonstration program to three more states and two territories. But limits imposed by the program mean that, for now, providers’ participation may be limited as well, they said.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced that the MFP program will be expanding to three more states — Illinois, Kansas and New Hampshire — and two territories: American Samoa and Puerto Rico. All will be awarded up to $5 million each through the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to participate in the MFP program, which is designed to help older adults and people with disabilities receive care in the setting of their choice and reduce unnecessary reliance on institutional care.

The additions mean that 41 states or territories now will participate in MFP, but that doesn’t necessarily translate to more business for assisted living providers.




What older adults do while they
Sit affects dementia risk

By Nina Raffio


Researchers at USC explored the link between sedentary behavior and risk of dementia, finds that type of activity matters when it comes to brain aging

Adults aged 60 and older who sit for long periods watching TV or other such passive, sedentary behaviors may be at increased risk of developing dementia, according to a new study by USC and University of Arizona researchers.

Their study also showed that the risk is lower for those who are active while sitting, such as when they read or use computers.





New research says dairy milk may help
Protect older adults from aging.




A
study published Monday says drinking three cups of dairy milk a day boosts an antioxidant that helps protect the brain from damage related to cognitive decline.

The University of Kansas Medical Center faculty published the study in the international journal Frontiers in Nutrition.

"Just like an old car that rusts, the human brain becomes corroded over time by free radicals and other oxidants that are released as the brain converts nutrients into energy. This oxidative stress, as it’s called, is thought to be a major mechanism of brain aging. Drinking dairy milk may fight that rust," KU Medical Center said in a press release Monday.







The reason I supply these periodic updates emphasizing the current status of our facility is because we are, as average, a community of adults living in an artificial environment as you will find.
 
Perhaps a little background is in order of whom, what and where we are is appropriate for those readers who are new to this blog.

I, and approximately 185 other folks, are residents of the Westchester Center for Independent and Assisted Living in Yonkers, just north of New York City in Westchester County. We are on a 14-acre plot of land atop a hill surrounded by private homes, wooded areas, a major parkway and a cemetery. Public transportation is limited and far from the facility. Most residents rely on Para transit (a county-run bus service for the handicapped) or car services to go to the malls, dinner or entertainment events. Transportation to doctor’s visits or other medical services is provided by Medicaid or Medicare. The facility provides one free trip to a local supermarket once a week and is limited to 12 persons.

Almost all of our residents pay for their room and board with their Social Security benefits. Medicaid and other federal, state and local programs subsidize the rest of the rent. Residents receive laundry, housekeeping, maintenance, meals, Wi-Fi and activities included in the room and board. Cable and phone services are available at a nominal charge. There is an RN on duty all day and physicians visit the facility regularly. This facility does not supply memory care.
 
Like all long-term care facilities, the COVID-19 pandemic hit us hard. And we still feel the effects to this day. This facility, by law, must continue to implement infection control procedures. That means the use of PPE throughout the building. It is very expensive and this, and other assisted living venues, have received little or nothing from the government to help pay for it. This has put a strain on our operation budget. As a result, they have cut back on many activities and programs. Many needed repairs are on hold, and our food budget has been reduced as well.

Fortunately, health-wise, we are okay. We have had only a few cases of COVID-19 among our residents and staff, and most have been mild and did not require hospitalization. Except for a few residents, all have received the vaccine and both subsequent boosters. However, there is a constant reminder that the virus is still with us and a threat to our wellbeing. Everyone is required to wear a mask while in the building (except during mealtimes). Having to comply with these state-mandated protocols makes for the somber mood that prevails among our residents. During the nearly 9 years I have been here, I have never seen morale as low as it is now, with no end in sight. The feeling here is COVID will be around forever and we, seniors, will be its primary target.

Many of us did not expect to wind up here. If anything, most would prefer to live at home. Grouping together people of all colors, religions and races who have physical and emotional problems into one confined area can be difficult, to say the least. But somehow we get along with one another, with only a few contentious moments.
 
With all that against us, I remain amazed at the resiliency of most of our residents. We are a strong group of people who have seen it all, done it all and have gone through personal hardships that would cause lesser beings to fall apart. And yet we continue with our lives as best we can, hoping for the best, but knowing that things could go south at any time.….......
 
 








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NEXT BLOG THURSDAY, AUGUST 25, 2022



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TUESDAY, AUGUST 23, 2022

Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com








Almost 1 in 3 U.S. Seniors Now Sees
At Least 5 Doctors Per Year

By Amy Norton


Nearly one-third of older U.S. adults visit at least five different doctors each year — reflecting the growing role of specialists in Americans' health care, a new study finds.

Over the past 20 years, Americans on Medicare have been increasingly seeing specialists, researchers found, with almost no change in visits with their primary care doctor.

On average, beneficiaries saw a 34% increase in the number of specialists they visited each year. And the proportion of patients seeing five or more doctors rose from about 18% in 2000, to 30% in 2019.




Ringing in your ears?
About 750 million people
Have this perplexing condition




Tinnitus, commonly described as a ringing in the ears, may affect about 750 million people around the world, according to new research based on about 50 years of data.

The study, published this week in the research journal JAMA Neurology, suggests tinnitus is perceived as a major problem by more than 120 million people, most of whom are 65 or older.

Researchers estimate about 14% of adults experience tinnitus, and 2% experience a severe form of it. The prevalence also appears to increase with age: Tinnitus is reported in 10% of adults ages 18 to 44, 14% of adults ages 45 to 64, and 24% of those 65 and older.




An audiologist’s take on the news that OTC
Hearing aids are on their way to consumers

By David Akbari


Over-the-Counter (OTC) hearing aids herald a new golden age for consumer access and affordability and will lead to improvements in technology innovation and public health outcomes in the coming years. Consumers and hearing healthcare providers alike are uniquely positioned to benefit from this new finalized OTC rule. While nothing can replace the high-touch, hands on service delivery of a skilled licensed professional, OTC hearing aids will provide much needed relief to tens of millions of un- and under-served Americans suffering from perceived mild-to-moderate hearing loss currently with limited and expensive options to treat their perceived mild-to-moderate hearing loss.

OTC hearing aids have been a long time in the making. In 2016, the United States spent nearly twice as much on overall health care as other high-income countries yet had poorer population health outcomes. In 2016, then-President Obama commissioned research by the President’s Council of Advisors in Science and Technology (PCAST) and the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM). Among their findings was that even if every single audiologist and hearing instrument dispenser was fitting people full time with hearing aids, there would still be a huge and growing unmet need in the United States for hearing healthcare forming the foundation for the new OTC hearing aid category.




2 Best Telecommuting Work
Opportunities for Seniors

By A. A. Francis


Working full-time or part-time as a senior citizen can be self-defeating in a world where the cost of living standards is always rising.

The median salary for most senior citizens working in 2018 was barely $22,000. However, the typical retiree needs at least $45,000 annually to cover their living expenses.

If you are age 65 and over, you can have more employment options that you can handle if you adjust to telecommuting.

All you need is a laptop and reliable internet to teach online or become a consultant.




Health concerns of the
super-elderly to watch out for


Although definitions vary, the super-elderly are commonly defined as individuals age 85 years or older. Special health concerns characterize this group, as highlighted by emerging research.

Here is a sampling of such findings on the health issues of the super-elderly.
Compression of morbidity

Compression of morbidity is defined as a decreased time between the manifestation of disability and death.






How to Plan for Your Long-Term
Care Insurance Needs

By Naomi Barr



The healthier and younger you are, the less your long-term care policy will cost in the long run.

Dreamstime

For millions of baby boomers, Gen-Xers, and millennials who have no long-term care strategy, the pandemic has sent a message: Act now or it will cost you later.

It’s a sobering task no matter your financial situation to plan for the possibility of some future incapacitation. But putting it off until too late can have dire consequences for your savings. The reality is that more than two-thirds of Americans over the age of 65 will need some sort of daily care for an average of three years during their lifetime, according to the Urban Institute.

Those costs can quickly add up. A stay in a nursing home can cost over $100,000 a year, and even care in your own home can easily top $5,000 a month or more.







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NEXT BLOG WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 24, 2022



©2022 Bruce Cooper

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 MONDAY, AUGUST 22, 2022

Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com







Older adults on fixed incomes are getting
Squeezed as inflation nears a 40-year high

By Edward O'Brien

Runaway inflation slightly eased last month, but consumer prices remain painfully high.

With Americans’ purchasing power eroded this year, older adults are among those being squeezed the hardest while being least able to afford it.

80-year-old Judy Allen is one of millions of older Americans now struggling to make ends meet.

“I live on a fixed income and it’s very hard right now."

The Missoula resident has just returned from the grocery store where she’s noticing her 'food stamp,' or SNAP benefits, are not keeping pace with food prices.



Even soaring inflation can't lure
Many retirees back to work

By Michael Sasso


Employers battling to fill job vacancies in the tight U.S. labor market this year have had a silver lining, as it were: decades-high inflation was bringing retired people back to the workforce.

But recent data suggest the trend may already be petering out.

The U.S. probably has reached a point where the older workers who hadn’t intended to retire permanently, or who had involuntarily been forced into retirement, have since rejoined the labor force, said Nick Bunker, economic research director for North America at recruitment firm Indeed Inc.




Apps to accelerometers:
Can technology improve
Mental health in older adults?




T
echnology can aid older adults’ mental health and medication management.

It can be devastating to watch older adults struggle with memory problems, low mood, anxiety, or a lack of motivation, particularly during times of physical distancing. With waiting lists for mental health appointments stretching for months, you may be wondering about alternatives.

Reaching out to family members or faith leaders may be helpful in talking through stressors. Alternatively, self-help books may provide skills or a new perspective for older adults choosing to keep their struggles private. But with the explosion of mental health mobile applications, telepsychiatry services, social media, and wearable technologies, where does technology fit in with treatment?

Combating ageist stereotypes....



Older Adults Are Better at
Listening Than You Think




Older adults may be better than previously thought at listening in loud social environments.

Ever mumble under your breath when your grandmother asks you to assist wipe the table after family dinner or complain about your grandpa’s tendency to cheat during a competitive game of gin rummy? You might want to speak less loudly since there’s a good chance that they can hear you more clearly than you think.

New research from Baycrest and Western University suggests that older individuals may be more adept at hearing in loud settings than previously thought. Older adults may enjoy and process discussions better than previous studies have shown, whether it be at a packed restaurant or a crowded family function. If true, this would enhance their quality of life and enable them to connect meaningfully with others who are going through similar experiences, thereby lowering their risk of dementia as social isolation is a risk factor for cognitive decline.






Social Security is at a crossroads this election season --
And older voters have enormous power

By Paul Brandus




Sometimes voters don’t necessarily connect the dots on things — the reason for this is another discussion. But let me provide an example, and it has to do with Social Security.

Consider that older Americans tend to vote in greater percentages than younger ones. In the 2020 presidential election, for example, 76% of Americans aged 65-74 voted, while just 51% of Americans aged 18-24 did. This data, provided by the Census Bureau, adds that there are similar correlations between education and voter turnout: The better educated you are, the more likely you are to vote.

In the looming midterm election, now less than three months away, Republicans remain heavily favored—a 78% probability, says FiveThirtyEight— to regain the House of Representatives, which they lost during the last midterm election in 2018. The current 50-50 Senate split has a 62% chance of tilting in favor of the Democrats, solidifying their razor-thin hold on the upper chamber.







Symptoms of Urinary Tract Infections
 In Older Adults



Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are a fact of life for a lot of people. Your risk of developing one increases as you age, making UTIs among the most commonly diagnosed infections in people who are older.  

Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy

UTIs can affect any part of your urinary tract. That includes your:









I awoke this morning the way I usually do: grumpy, stiff and nauseous. As the fog of a lousy night’s sleep cleared from my head, I remembered today was my birthday. My 77th, if I were counting.
 
Before you send me “Birthday Wishes” or “many more” or the standard “Happy Birthday”, I must warn you. They are not appreciated. I don’t celebrate birthdays. Mine, or anybody’s. Why would I want to laud something that I have no control over and did nothing to earn? What exactly do we celebrate, anyway? Is it that by some miracle I have made to a ripe old age? It’s more like an over-ripe age. All it really means is that I am one year closer to the inevitable.

However, to lighten the mood and make something meaningful out of my creeping decrepitude, I did the thing I most like doing. Research. There’s a lot of stuff associated with the number “77.”

Seven was symbolic in ancient, near eastern and Israelite culture and literature. It communicated a sense of “fullness” or “completeness” (שבע “seven” is spelled with the same consonants as the word שבע “complete/full”). This makes sense of the pervasive appearance of “seven” patterns in the Bible. Biblically, it symbolizes the basis of the word of God–it is said that the number 7 is God’s numeral (just as the number 6 is connected to Satan).
 
Any craps player knows the number “7” had something to do with luck. And slot machine aficionados are thrilled to see the number “7-7-7” pop up. And with two sevens, it gets even better…
 
“77 in Numerology

The number 77 is considered a very powerful number by many people. This is because this master number seven is seen as a very lucky number, and adding up the twin flame digits of 77 results in a sum of ten. In numerology, the number ten is seen as a symbol of perfection and hard work.” [1]
 

Hmm. Perfection, maybe. But “Hard Work.” That doesn’t sound like something I’d be interested in at this point in my life.
 
“Angel number 77, which has two of those sevens, is an ultra-powerful number with “twice as much luck and energy” as 7. So if you often see this number 77, you can be proud of yourself. The angels are sending us a congratulatory message: “The path you’ve been on is not wrong, just go on.” The angels acknowledge what you’re doing and what you’re doing, and they’re applauding you for being “wonderful.”

The positive energy produced by the 77-angel number is used to positively affect others. Receiving good things in exchange means spreading good things to others. You offer love in abundance, and you receive even more in exchange.” [2]


With all that going for me, I should feel good about turning 77. Truthfully, It’s okay. It’s just a number and means nothing other than I have seen another 12 months come and go. And, if indeed, the number “77” turns out to be as lucky as they say it is, I’ll be around to see another 12 months. And that’s good too. I’m just not going to brag about it. I might treat myself to some take-out. Either pizza or Chinese. And if someone wants to join me, I’ll be glad to have them. Otherwise, it will be just another day of my life I’ve had and hope to have. And, if lady luck or my guardian angel should throw a few bucks my way, I won’t refuse them…..........


[1] https://sarahscoop.com/the-master-number-77-in-numerology-and-why-you-are-seeing-it/
[2] https://angelmanifest.com/angel-number-77/








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NEXT BLOG TUESDAY, AUGUST 23, 2022



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Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com

GOOD DAY.
IT’S SUNDAY, AUGUST 21, 2022





Where To Find
Senior Citizens Day Discounts
By Jami Farkas

National Senior Citizens Day is Aug. 21, which is the perfect excuse to celebratethe older and wiser members of the population. President Ronald Reagan issued a proclamation designating the occasion in 1988, and since then it has served as a reminder to say “thank you” to older people who have made such a positive impact on society.


GOBankingRates compiled a list of more than 75 places where seniors can save money on National Senior Citizens Day and beyond. Many of the discounts require an AARP membership, which costs $16 a year, but the organization offers frequent specials on the rate. Plus, the discounts begin at age 50 for AARP members. A variety of retailers, restaurants, hotels and more offer senior discounts year-round, so make sure you’re taking advantage of these savings opportunities.





When Do You Become
A Senior Citizen?

By Maryalene LaPonsie


There is no clearly defined age when you become a senior citizen. Some people might consider themselves seniors when they retire from the workplace, sign up for Social Security or begin to spend their retirement savings, but others aren't ready to call themselves a senior citizen yet.

Here are some milestones that could indicate you’ve become a senior citizen:

    Qualifying for Medicare.
    Social Security eligibility.
    Receiving senior discounts.
    Spending retirement savings.
    Stepping away from work.
    Changes in health.
    A shift in priorities.
    Rethinking age stereotypes.


1. Qualifying for Medicare

There are specific ages when you qualify for various types of retirement benefits. In some aspects “society makes it very clear when we become senior citizens,” says Mimi Secor, a nurse practitioner and national speaker in Upton, Massachusetts. For example, at age 65 you qualify for Medicare. Take care to meet the Medicare enrollment deadlines to avoid premium increases.




Your Brain at the
Moment of Death

By David Levine


There is a fierce and political debate in this country about when human life begins. Some anti-abortion advocates say human life starts at conception, while others say it is when a heartbeat can be detected.

In contrast, there is little to no debate about when life ends. In its Uniform Declaration of Death Act (1980), the Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine says “death has occurred when an individual has sustained either irreversible cessation of circulatory and respiratory function or irreversible cessation of all function of the entire brain including the brain stem.”

Such a choked, clinical description makes death seem thin when compared to the narrative richness of religious poetry through the centuries—from Buddhist visions of ongoing reincarnation to the proverbial meeting with St. Peter at the pearly gates. Clinical language also falls short of the everyday experience of the millions of people who have opened that door and survived—later to recall their encounter with death through unexplained lucid episodes of heightened awareness—that mythical light at the end of the tunnel.



Gossip has long been misunderstood –
Here's how it can help your
Work and social life

By Kathryn Waddington


Gossip gets a bad rap – from tabloids full of salacious celebrity gossip, to the badly behaved teens of television programmes like Gossip Girl. But while it might get dismissed or reported as an unsubstantiated rumour, gossip is a key part of politics and the way the world works.

Gossipy women are over-represented in popular images of gossip. An informal analysis of 100 Google images of gossip revealed 62% were of women only, 7% were men only, and 31% showed men and women gossiping. This reinforces the popular and enduring myth that men don’t gossip, but research shows that men and women engage in the same amount of gossiping activity.

Gossip can be traced back to the origins of language. Evolutionary psychologist Robin Dunbar even argues that language evolved to enable people to gossip. From its earliest form to today, gossip has been a way to pass on socially useful information about who you could (and couldn’t) trust, who was a free rider, and who talked bullshit.




Old age isn't a modern phenomenon –
Many people lived long enough to
Grow old in the olden days, too

By Sharon DeWitte



Every year I ask the college students in the course I teach about the 14th-century Black Death to imagine they are farmers or nuns or nobles in the Middle Ages. What would their lives have been like in the face of this terrifying disease that killed millions of people in just a few years?

Setting aside how they envision what it would be like to confront the plague, these undergrads often figure that during the medieval period they would already be considered middle-aged or elderly at the age of 20. Rather than being in the prime of life, they think they’d soon be decrepit and dead.

They’re reflecting a common misperception that long life spans in humans are very recent, and that no one in the past lived much beyond their 30s.



Brain freeze:
The science behind
Ice cream headache


Brain freeze is also known as ice cream headache, cold stimulus headache, and sphenopalatine ganglioneuralgia. It is a short-term headache typically linked to the rapid consumption of ice cream, ice pops, or very cold drinks.

Brain freeze occurs when something extremely cold touches the upper palate (roof of the mouth). It typically happens when the weather is very hot, and the individual consumes something cold too fast.

Harvard Medical School scientists who have investigated the causes of brain freeze, believe that their findings could eventually pave the way to more effective treatments for various types of headaches, such as migraine-related ones, or pain caused by brain injuries.







America’s seniors are paying for
Medicare mismanagement

By Mario H. Lopez


I
nflation and gas prices might be driving domestic political news, but for vulnerable communities hit hardest by diseases such as Alzheimer’s, health care is always top of mind. That concern rapidly can turn to frustration and anger when dealing with Medicare coverage — especially when promising new treatments are stifled by mismanagement in government bureaucracies.

If the Biden administration’s goal is to upset seniors — a key constituency in a pivotal election year — it is certainly succeeding. Despite inflating seniors’ Medicare Part B premiums to account for new drug costs that have not materialized, the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) recently announced it won’t lower premiums again until next year, and perhaps not even then. The comedy of errors that led to this announcement is, in fact, a tragedy for seniors hoping to access Alzheimer’s treatments.

When the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted accelerated approval last summer for aducanumab (brand name Aduhelm), the first new Alzheimer’s medicine in two decades, it was a watershed moment for millions of patients. This medicine is part of a new class of treatments targeting amyloid beta plaques, one of the root causes of Alzheimer’s disease, rather than merely treating symptoms. It represented hope for patients and loved ones grappling with a devastating disease — and an opportunity to address socioeconomic inequities associated with it. With seniors poised to benefit, and several similar medicines under FDA review, CMS kicked off a process to update Medicare coverage.




Best Senior Dating Sites In 2022:
Top 3 Online Dating Websites For Senior Singles


Senior dating is growing more common among the elderly. With grown children and approaching retirement, most seniors no longer have as many responsibilities as they previously did. As a result, they have more time on their hands, which they may spend in any way they like.

Before going into online dating, anyone who hasn’t dated in a while should clearly define their dating goals. Online senior dating sites are now available for such persons. These websites’ ultimate purpose is to bring together like-minded singles and help them get to know one another better. Older generations might use the services for a variety of reasons, including friendship, companionship, and serious romantic relationships.

With no further ado, let’s get started!
Top Platforms For Senior Dating Sites To Find Love In 2022...




52% of Assisted Living Operators Say
Labor Woes Have Worsened Since January

By Nick Andrews


Assisted living operators are still struggling with workforce challenges in the summer of 2022 — in fact, more than half say their overall workforce situation has further worsened since January.

That’s according to a new survey from the National Center for Assisted Living (NCAL). The survey, published Tuesday, included responses from more than 120 operators managing a collective 4,000 assisted living communities.

In the survey, 52% of the operators reported that the current labor crunch is either “much worse,” (24%) or “somewhat worse,” (28%) while just 23% reported the situation was either “much better,” or “somewhat better.” Just over a quarter of respondents said that workforce challenges have stayed the same since January.




Most Essential Insurance
For Senior Citizens


There are so many of us that wonders if it is sensible to get Insurance for Seniors or not? The debate is whether senior citizens that are above the age of 60 should have access to basic life and health insurance or not? Over the past few years, the ratio for insurance has increased. However, there is always a difference between premium affordability and benefits.

The fast-paced life where there is immense pressure to get settled in every way by the age of 30 years is extremely demanding and time-consuming. Nevertheless, that does not mean you should limit your old age or you cannot plan your financial security.

After the age of 50, you come into the category of a senior citizen. There are many insurance plans for senior citizens that are dedicated to providing protection till the very stage of life. For example, there is life insurance, health insurance, car insurance, and many more.




Do older adults experience much
Alone time at assisted living facilities?

By Dr. Sandra Petersen


Question: How interactive and involved are the caregivers at assisted living facilities? Do the residents experience much alone time?

Answer: Assisted living communities offer a variety of activities in which residents can choose to be involved. Most offer a calendar with daily activities tailored to the interests of their residents as a part of life enrichment programming. Of course, if someone chooses not to attend activities or simply needs some time to themselves, they can pursue independent activities such as puzzles or reading in the library. Or, some residents may need some downtime in their apartment, and that’s OK, too.

The assisted living care model is based on choice and independence, so that means the residents can be as active as they choose (or not), depending upon their preference. Staff members are trained to encourage residents to attend activities but are sensitive to the balance necessary for quality of life.

Staff members are trained to encourage residents to attend activities but are sensitive to the balance necessary for quality of life.




Older adults may have better listening skills in
Noisy environments than previously thought

Reviewed by Emily Henderson


Ever grumble about your grandpa's tendency to cheat during a spirited game of gin rummy; or mutter under your breath when grandma asks you to help clean the table at family dinner? Well, you might want to do it more quietly, because there's a good chance they can hear you better than you think.

According to a new, joint study by Baycrest and Western University, older adults may have better listening skills in noisy environments than we think. Whether at a crowded family event or a busy restaurant, older adults may enjoy and process conversations better than research has so far suggested. If so, this would improve their quality of life and help them make meaningful connections with others in similar situations, ultimately reducing their risk of social isolation and – since social isolation is a risk factor for cognitive decline – dementia.

Scientists have long thought that compared to younger adults, older adults seem to be less able to use speech "glimpses" (using the speech they hear more clearly during brief reductions in background noise) to better understand conversations in noisy settings. However, the Baycrest-Western University study shows that this may only be the case for the relatively boring, disconnected and unnatural sentences that are typically used in laboratory settings, but not for more natural speech. In other words, the difficulties older adults experience when listening to speech in noisy situations of everyday life may be less than long thought.



A Polyphenol-Rich Diet Prevents
Inflammation in Older People



Polyphenols in the foods that we eat can prevent inflammation in older people since they alter the intestinal microbiota and induce the production of the indole 3-propionic acid (IPA), a metabolite derived from the degradation of tryptophan due to intestinal bacteria.

This study, published in Molecular Nutrition and Food Research, was carried out by the Research Group on Biomarkers and Nutritional & Food Metabolomics of the Faculty of Pharmacy and Food Sciences of the University of Barcelona and the CIBER on Fragility and Healthy Ageing (CIBERFES).

The team, led by Professor Cristina Andrés-Lacueva, from the Faculty of Pharmacy and Food Sciences of the UB, is also a member of the Food Innovation Network of Catalonia (XIA).

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE



Dems Release Plan to Boost
Social Security by $2,400 a Year

By Yuval Rosenberg and Michael Rainey


Good Thursday evening. The House committee investigating the January 6 insurrection at the Capitol is set to begin its first in a series of public hearings at 8 p.m. ET tonight laying out its findings. “The committee plans to detail their findings of what they say was a months-long Republican conspiracy to overthrow Joe Biden’s legitimate election victory, led by President Donald Trump,” The Washington Post reports. The hearing will be televised live by all the major broadcast and cable news networks except for Fox News, and you can stream it at the committee’s website, its Youtube channel or at many major news sites, so you have plenty of viewing options.

Here's what else is going on.

Save Social Security by Taxing the Rich? Democrats Have a Plan

The Social Security trustees announced last week that the program’s trust fund will be depleted in 2035, at which point benefits would be cut by 20%, assuming Congress does nothing to alter its current fiscal trajectory. A group of Democratic lawmakers led by Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) reintroduced legislation Thursday that would do just that, with a plan they say would fully fund Social Security for 75 years while boosting benefits by $2,400 annually for most participants.

The Social Security Expansion Act would pay for that increase in benefits by applying the current payroll tax of 12.4% to incomes over $250,000 — a big change from the current system, in which the payroll tax is capped at the first $147,000 in income. The proposed change would affect about 7% of taxpayers. The plan also calls for improving the way inflation is measured for the annual cost of living adjustments.




Rising debt may ‘adversely affect’
Older adults’ health

By Chris Clow


O
lder adults who find themselves burdened by debt in later life are faring worse on a variety of health-related issues when directly compared to their less-indebted counterparts. This is according to research from the Urban Institute, highlighted recently in a story published by the New York Times.

Researchers at the Urban Institute, by analyzing broad national data over nearly 20 years, have reported that indebted older adults fare measurably worse on a range of health measures: fair or poor self-rated health, depression, inability to work, impaired ability to handle everyday activities like bathing and dressing,” the story reads.

Those who reported themselves as in debt were also more likely to have ever had at least two or more illnesses diagnosed by a physician, including heart and lung disease, cancer, heart attacks, strokes, diabetes and hypertension, the story reads based on the data.




Companion Walking Is Key to
Long-Term Health for Aging People


As a geriatric kinesiologist, I believe companion walking is the secret to helping older adults move more.

Edna, a 92-year-old woman who lived in an assisted living community, sat next to her window every day, watching other residents go in and out on permitted outings.

She used a walker to get around but mostly stayed glued to her window, anticipating the day she would be cleared to go outside for a walk.




Private Retirement Home Residents
Use More Hospital Care

By Diana Swift


Residents of private retirement (or assisted-living) homes have significantly higher rates of hospital-based healthcare service utilization, compared with patients receiving home care or living in long-term care (or nursing) homes, new data indicate.

In a population-based Ontario study, rates per 1000 person-months of emergency department visits, hospital admissions, days of alternate level of care (that is, less than full intensity of hospital care), and specialist physician visits were increased for residents of retirement homes in comparison with residents of long-term care homes. On the other hand, retirement home residents had approximately 92 fewer primary care visits per 1000 person-months, compared with residents of long-term care homes.

"Our findings can help to inform policy debates about the need for more coordinated primary and supportive health care in privately operated congregate care homes," the authors write.



Experience: I’m a 79-year-old
World champion powerlifter



I started powerlifting when I was 65. I worked in real estate in Michigan for about 35 years, and when I retired I decided I wanted to lose a bit of weight. A friend’s husband, Art Little, who is a personal trainer, invited me to his gym. He introduced me to powerlifting and is still my trainer now.

The first time I went, he gave me a broomstick to lift. The next day I told myself I wouldn’t return, but I heard a voice in my head telling me to go back. So, I ended up returning day after day. After a few weeks, my trainer encouraged me to go to a tournament to watch others compete. I was really amazed by all these young women, but there was no one of my age. I asked my trainer if he thought I could do it and he said, “Oh, sure.”

The first time I competed was at a state meet. There were about 45 people across the different age groups, which ranged from teenagers to people my age. There were only three of us in my age category. I did the bench press, the deadlift and the squat – the three types of lifts in powerlifting – and came first in all three. I was amazed that I won, because the others had been doing it far longer. I just came in after two months and wiped them all out. After that, I knew powerlifting was for me.




Are you a “stay-at-home” senior
Who might not feel
Comfortable in an assisted living facility?



T
he vast majority of seniors say that they want to spend their so-called “golden years” in their own homes. Assisted living facilities are not an option for those who want to socialize with neighbors, family and friends, are able to get around on their own and feel safe and secure in their own homes.

A poll conducted by Capital Caring Health, a nonprofit provider of elder health, and the online health website, WebMD, found that “88% of people between the ages of 50 and 80 said it was very or somewhat important to them that they live in their homes as long as possible.” But the reality is that not all of them are prepared.

“Aging in place is trending due in part to the fact that growing old is not as debilitating as it used to be,” says Gerry Hafer, Executive Director of the AMAC Foundation, the non-profit arm of the Association of Mature American Citizens. “The acceptance of healthier lifestyles and the benefits of modern medicine have helped to convince many seniors to stay at home.”

There is a caveat, of course, says Hafer, and that means you need to make an assessment of what you are able to do by yourself and what you can’t do. “The most critical issue you need to deal with is your health. Do you suffer from a debilitating illness? In fact, making the decision may require a conversation with your doctor.”




25 Groups Join to Advance a
Better Measure for the Cost of Aging


Equity In Aging Collaborative will advocate for use of Elder Index to determine program eligibility

The National Council on Aging (NCOA), in collaboration with the Gerontology Institute at the University of Massachusetts Boston, is launching the Equity In Aging Collaborative—a coalition of 25 national and local organizations that will advocate for a better way to measure the true cost of living as Americans age.

"Inflation is decimating the little financial security older adults might have coming out of the pandemic," said Ramsey Alwin, NCOA President and CEO. "But even before that, the federal poverty level failed to reflect older adults' real needs to age with dignity. The Equity in Aging Collaborative will work to ensure that the programs millions of people rely on actually keep pace with the costs of aging in America."

The Collaborative will build on 15 years of experience with the Elder Economic Security Standard™ Index, or Elder Index. Developed by the Gerontology Institute at the University of Massachusetts Boston, the Elder Index is a measure of the income older adults need to meet their basic needs and age in place with dignity, factoring in household size, geography, housing, health care, transportation, food, and other daily essentials.




What exactly does age-appropriate
Style mean for older people?

By Helen Dennis


Q. I am a newly retired 68-year-old woman. As a former attorney, I never had difficulty buying clothes. Not the case now. Recently I went to two large department stores and found nothing that seemed to be right for me. I even tried to buy jeans, which was worse than buying a bathing suit. Is there still a notion of looking “age-appropriate” or is that archaic thinking? I am curious about your thoughts on this. Many thanks. B.Y.

There have been some odd rules about what has been age-appropriate for older women, such as no long hair, no sleeveless tops and no mini-skirts or loud clothes. As Jennifer Alfano of Harper’s Bazaar writes, “What does age-appropriate mean when everyone from nine to 90 is wearing jeans?”

Yet what should we think when we see an ad on the Internet from Walmart that advertises “Elderly Dresses?” Some were shapeless and others were figure-clinging and described as sexy. Not sure “elderly” is the best term.




'Solo ager' speaks up about the need
For guidance in end-of-life planning

By Carol Bradley Bursack


Dear Carol: I love your website and columns; however, I want to make a plea for information about how older adults who have no children can plan for their future. My husband and I are in our mid-60s, and he has early-onset Alzheimer’s so he’s in memory care. We have no children and no close family. How do I find someone I can trust to handle my legal decisions as my health declines with age? I don’t even know where to start. Thank you! — WR.

Dear WR: This is a good question. Currently, the term for people who are aging without a competent partner or adult children is “solo agers,” though even people who have adult children can run into complications. The reason they struggle could be due to physical distance, emotional estrangement or simply an incompatibility of opinions about how older adults’ lives should end. I see this incompatibility most often when it comes to financial issues, but it’s also a concern with if/how an older adult should be artificially kept alive beyond a certain point, or cremation versus burial. Sadly, having a spouse isn’t always enough, either, as you have found.

While drawing up the paperwork is usually easier for those who can designate an adult child as power of attorney (POA), appropriate professionals are skilled in helping people create a plan for their unique circumstances. In some cases, it’s enough to see an estate attorney, but since you’ll have questions beyond designating powers of attorney, an elder law attorney may be best. The basics, of course, are POAs for finances and health as well as a will that states how to distribute your property.




What is a Comfortable
Lifestyle in Retirement?
By Deanna Ritchie


To retire comfortably, Americans say they will need $1.1 million. Unfortunately, less than one in four will have the savings to do so.



According to the 2022 Schroders US Retirement Survey, 22% of people approaching retirement say they'll have enough money to maintain a comfortable standard of living. The figure is down from 26% the previous year.

Overall, there is a general expectation among Americans that their retirement savings will be inadequate. In fact, the majority (56%) expect to have less than $500,000 saved by the time they retire and 36% anticipate having less than $250,000.

Not surprisingly, American workers were most worried about inflation shrinking their assets in retirement. The second most-feared scenario is becoming a reality, at least right now – 53% of respondents fear "a major market downturn significantly reducing assets."




NEXT BLOG MONDAY, AUGUST 22, 2022

©2022 Bruce Cooper

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GOOD DAY.
IT’S FRIDAY, AUGUST 19, 2022







It’s Time to Cater to the
Over-65 Crowd, Or Else!

H. Dennis Beaver, Esq.


B
usinesses can’t afford to ignore the fastest growing market in the world. Here’s how businesses shoot themselves in the foot with these valuable employees and customers (and by the way, don’t call them “seniors” or “elderly,” either).

“There is a huge market – millions of people – that could be a missed opportunity for American business,” says author Susan Golden, who teaches at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and is considered one of the nation’s leading experts on the impact of longevity on our economy.

So, who are these people?

“The U.S. Census tells us they are the 10,000 people turning 65 every day. In the time it takes to read this sentence, another 20 will join that group. More importantly, in 15 years, Americans aged 65 and older will outnumber those under age 18,” she points out.




A Will is Just the Tip of the Iceberg:
A Holistic Understanding
Of Estate Settlement

By Davide Pisanu


We all love to prepare for the future. But how do we prepare for a future without us in it?

This worry is top-of-mind for many Americans. In a 3,000-person poll by Maru Public Opinion for ClearEstate, 90% of us appoint an immediate or extended family member as our will executor. And those same executors – people we love, people who love us, people who we trust with our last wishes – describe their role as being one of the most difficult experiences ever.

Fifty percent of family members that accept executorship admit they received little guidance on that role. That lack of guidance compounded by the grief of losing a loved one results in unnecessary strife and mental health stress.

During estate settlement, our loved ones are facing some of the worst experiences of their lives. Let’s explore the problem and how to ease the estate settlement process.



Why We're Failing Older
Adults with Disabilities

By Nora Macaluso



Hearing loss is not uncommon, yet affordable solutions are. If we're unwilling to improve lives when we have the tools, what does that mean for those living with more complex disabilities?
As the population ages, the number of people with disabilities will rise, meaning more people will need access to therapies and support systems. That's already happening with hearing loss, which affects most people after a certain age — yet hearing aids remain out of reach for many.

f this easy fix for a common problem isn't widely available, what does that say about the outlook for more complex conditions, such as intellectual disabilities, that are more expensive and harder to address in older adults?

Read more  >> CLICK HERE

 

6 Perks And Advantages Of
Luxury Retirement Homes

By Amy Gale


Retirement Homes

Retirement is a time to slow down and relax. It’s also an opportunity to enjoy the finer things in life. From the food you eat to the company you keep, retirement is a chance to enjoy yourself. Hence, look into luxury retirement homes if you want a comfortable place to spend your senior years.

These homes offer some of the best amenities and services, giving you access to everything from spa treatments and golf courses to pools, fitness centers, and more.

Here are six perks of living in a luxury retirement home:

1. Staff-Assisted Living...






Why do we die?
By William Park



Certain jellyfish and their relatives offer tantalising clues as to whether immortality is possible – so why does death become the rest of us?

Of all the weird and wonderful aquatic organisms that bob about in our oceans and rivers, you would be forgiven for overlooking the hydra. Named after the Ancient Greek mythological serpent that could regrow its heads, it is a freshwater relative of jellyfish, anemones and corals. A little like a dandelion seed, with a long body and tuft of tentacles on one end, there's not much to see. But they have a remarkable property that makes them a curiosity of biology: they can regenerate. If you cut a hydra into many pieces, each bit will regrow into a complete, new individual.

Their regenerative properties have piqued the interest of biologists looking for evidence of immortality in nature. Why do these species appear not to die by natural causes? And is death inevitable?









Today I awoke feeling the way I feel every day, lousy. Not sick, but not well either.
 
If you are a senior, you know exactly what I mean. Despite that, you may have slept soundly for the past 6 or 7 hours. Your body feels like it just ran a marathon.

Everything hurts. Your neck, your back, your knees. And it’s not because you have arthritis or any other affliction.
 
And when your body finally allows you to get out of bed, do your bathroom ablutions and get dressed, you are already exhausted. And, when you try to explain this to your doctor, he gives you an understanding smile and tells you what you already know. It’s simply your body letting you know you are old. And you will fell that way until you die. But why does it have to be this way? If only there were a medication that would just make you feel good.

No. I’m not suggesting you load yourself up on painkillers or narcotics. Those meds are dangerous and, over time, will have less and less effect on how you feel. And “coming down” from those drugs is rough. I’m not even talking about pot or shrooms. Getting high for a few hours may take the blah away, it only covers up what’s really wrong. And besides, it’s not euphoria I want. I don’t care how my mood is. I just want not to feel like s**t anymore.

I understand there are real things that give you real pain. And that pain leads to a general feeling of malaise. And for those cases, pain medication will supply some relief. But what if you don’t have any specific areas of your body causing you discomfort? What do you take for that? What pill, vaccine or elixir will put the spring back in your step or the joy back in your heart?
 
I think the drug manufacturers are missing out on a good thing. Instead of trying to relieve pain, just try to make me feel well. I need something so when somebody asks me “How are you feeling?”, I can answer without lying. Just once, I’d like to answer with, “I’m feeling pretty good”, and mean it.

Notice I did not say I want to feel great. I believe no one actually feels “great.” At least, not every day. I just want to feel not bad. Is that too much to ask for?
 
A few years ago, I began taking an anti-depressant. It has helped with my outlook on life. It does its job. I’m not depressed. Unfortunately, what it doesn’t do is allow me to jump out of bed with a smile on my face and a song in my heart. I want to inhale and exhale without that feeling of coughing up a lung.[1]
 
Many drug companies, and even some billionaires, are investing in “life extension.” That’s okay. But what good are all those extra years if you don’t feel good? Is long life what we really want? Or is what we want is a life of vitality?


I know my days on this earth are numbered. There will come a time when my body parts will cease to function. I want to be ready for that. But what I want most when my time comes is to leave on my own terms. Not because I’m sick or in pain, but because I’ve had enough. But until that time comes, I just want to stop feeling like crap. Can I get a high five on that?……..
 

[1]. No. I don’t smoke…anything!
 
 
 




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TheSeniorLog doesn't go away on weekends
Join us on Saturday and Sunday for our
WEEKEND EDITION
There are new stories and articles as well
as news you might have missed


NEXT BLOG SATURDAY, AUGUST 20, 2022



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GOOD DAY.
IT’S THURSDAY, AUGUST 18, 2022










Changes to Medicare Part D
Under New Law

By Dena Bunis

For the first time in Medicare’s history, the amount of money that beneficiaries in drug plans will have to pay for their prescriptions each year will be capped, thanks to provisions of the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022. The new law makes other changes to the program’s Part D drug benefits, including putting a limit on out-of-pocket payments for insulin and making vital vaccines free.

“There was previously no limit on how much a person on Part D could have to pay in a given year,” says Nancy LeaMond, AARP’s executive vice president and chief advocacy and engagement officer. “And 1.3 million enrollees spent more than $2,000 in 2020.”  

As with many of the other provisions in the new law, the changes to Part D out-of-pocket spending will roll out over the next several years. Here’s a look at how the new cost-sharing rules will work and when the savings will start.

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE



No, Senate inflation bill isn't stripping
$300 billion from Medicare

By Brett Arends


If you’re among the hundreds of thousands—possibly more—who have seen one of these commercials about Medicare and the latest bill in Congress, I’ve got some bad news, some good news, and a puzzle for you.

The bad news is that you’re being played.

The good news is that nobody is “stripping $300 billion from Medicare” by any calculation that would make sense to you or anyone you know. (More on this below.)

The puzzle is in two parts: Who, exactly, is the “American Prosperity Alliance,” the mysterious front organization behind the commercial? And why, exactly, do they want us to pay an extra $300 billion to America’s drug companies?



This Is The Biggest Barrier
To Sleep If You're 60+


Existing research has shown that as we get older, our sleep tends to suffer. And according to a new study out of Finland, published in the Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine, there's one thing that a lot of adults in their 60s seem to be losing sleep over. Here's what the research shows.

Studying how stress affects sleep in older adults.

For this study, researchers wanted to assess how different kinds of stress affected the sleep of older adults who were approaching retirement. The first study consisted of over 2,700 adults and looked at factors like physical and mental working conditions, stressful life events, and work-life balance.

An additional population study of nearly 4,000 people found that over half of Finnish men in their 60s and 70% of women had reported sleeping difficulties within the past month.




The Crisis Facing Nursing Homes,
Assisted Living and Home Care
For America’s Elderly

By Alexandra Moe



December blurred to January, and the night shift blurred into the day shift, as Momah Wolapaye, 53, rotated warm towels beneath the bedridden at the nursing care wing for the Covid-positive. Repositioning the residents every two hours prevented bed sores, and normally took two aides, but now only one was permitted in rooms. Straws were also forbidden, so after giving sponge baths, Wolapaye spoon-fed sips of water to the elderly, checked their breathing and skin coloration, and calmed the anxious who called into the night silence.

Most didn’t understand why they were suddenly in new rooms, sealed with painter’s plastic, and why they needed masks. Some wanted to leave, and Wolapaye spent 20 of the 30 minutes inside each room calming them and explaining “the virus.” It was December 2020, the pandemic’s second wave, and all but three staff on his team had caught Covid. His supervisor asked if he could work 16-hour shifts. He agreed. He tied his blue uniform in a plastic bag when he got home in the morning, told his sons not to touch it, and returned to work that evening to Goodwin Living, a long-term care community in D.C.’s suburbs.





RUST REMOVAL


Rust is a reddish-brown coating that forms on an iron object or surface when it comes into contact with oxygen and water, such as moisture in the air. Actually, it is common in moist areas and close to the sea. Don’t worry, free time Home Tricks explains how to remove rust from objects and surfaces in the home.


Removing rust is no easy task, but luckily there are tricks that are very effective on a variety of surfaces. There are currently various cleaning products capable of removing rust, but sometimes they are usually expensive, so using natural ingredients, and that we usually have at home, is a good option. take note.





Cognitive Rehab May Help Older Adults
Clear Covid-Related Brain Fog

By Judith Graham


Eight months after falling ill with covid-19, the 73-year-old woman couldn’t remember what her husband had told her a few hours before. She would forget to remove laundry from the dryer at the end of the cycle. She would turn on the tap at a sink and walk away.

Before covid, the woman had been doing bookkeeping for a local business. Now, she couldn’t add single-digit numbers in her head.

Was it the earliest stage of dementia, unmasked by covid? No. When a therapist assessed the woman’s cognition, her scores were normal.










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NEXT BLOG FRIDAY, AUGUST 19, 2022



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GOOD DAY.
IT’S WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 17, 2022








F.D.A. Clears Path for Hearing Aids
To be Sold Over the Counter

By Christina Jewett



The agency issued a final rule that took years to complete and opens the door to cheaper, more accessible devices without a prescription or medical exam.

The Food and Drug Administration moved on Tuesday to make hearing aids available over the counter and without a prescription to adults, a long-sought wish of consumers frustrated by expensive exams and devices.

As soon as mid-October, people with mild to moderate hearing loss should be able to buy hearing aids online and in retail stores, without being required to see a doctor for an exam to get a prescription.

The F.D.A. cited studies estimating that about 30 million Americans experience hearing loss, but only about one-fifth of them get help. The changes could upend the market, which is dominated by a relatively small number of manufacturers, and make it a broader field with less costly, and perhaps, more innovative designs. Current costs for hearing aids, which tend to include visits with an audiologist, range from about $1,400 at Costco to roughly $4,700 elsewhere.

Read more  >> CLICK HERE


House Democrats call for action on
Social Security reform.
What that could mean for your benefits

By Lorie Konish



Social Security crossed a new milestone when it reached its 87th anniversary on Sunday.

The program was signed into law by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt on Aug. 14, 1935. Today it provides monthly checks to more than 65 million beneficiaries.

But it now faces a deadline after which the program will no longer be able to pay full benefits, if Congress does not act sooner.

In 2035, according to the program’s trustees, just 80% of benefits will be payable.




47% of Older People Now
Die With This Diagnosis

By Chris Kissell



A
s awareness of dementia has grown, a startling fact has come to light: Nearly half of all older adults — 47% — die with a diagnosis of that condition on their medical record, according to recent research out of the University of Michigan and published in JAMA Health Forum.

That number was just 36% two decades ago. However, the 11-percentage-point increase in diagnoses does not necessarily indicate that dementia is growing more prevalent in society, researchers say.

Rather, three factors have raised the profile of the illness, bringing greater attention to dementia that is reflected in medical records. The three factors are:




Older Americans need action on
Mental health and behavioral health crises

By Michael Pessman


Many older Americans face age-related mental health issues and substance abuse disorders that were exacerbated by COVID-19. This is fueling a national health crisis that requires action by policymakers, health care providers and insurers.

Older adults commonly reported depression, anxiety and trouble with sleep during the pandemic. Since March 2020, one in five adults ages 50-80, or 19 percent, reported worse sleep patterns than before the pandemic.

The pandemic made it increasingly difficult for older Americans and people with disabilities to connect with family and friends. This may have contributed to higher substance use, dangerous overdoses, and even suicide for some people with substance use disorders.




Are senior citizens
The future of smart -2-



For some, downsizing, especially in the U.S. where homes are bigger, becomes an option, said Etkin.

"When people reach a certain age, when they've reached the status of empty-nesters, they probably won't downsize right then and there, but a decade or two after that they may realize that this big home doesn't serve them anymore," she said. "It's just too much to clean, to maintain. There are too many stairs. It's not safe."

So if people are looking to downsize, the only options that they had until recently were to either rent or buy a smaller apartment or move into senior living.



Non-invasive brain stimulation
Helps older adults learn
New motor skills

By Michael Irving



It’s unsurprising but unfortunate that as we get older, our capacity to learn new skills diminishes. But a new study by researchers at EPFL has found that non-invasive electrical brain stimulation can help older adults learn new motor skills much faster.

Whether it’s brushing your teeth or making a sandwich, every daily activity is made up of a sequence of small movements and actions that we essentially perform on autopilot. But it can take time and effort to learn a new one of these sequential motor skills, such as a new sport or musical instrument.

Young people often pick up these new skills pretty quickly, but as we get older it’s harder to do and takes longer. So for the new study, the EPFL team investigated a potential way to help older adults learn new sequential motor skills faster and more effectively.






Skinner: The senior system sucks at best
Steve Skinner, Aspen Daily News Columnist




S
eniors beware! Many of you are getting ripped off, bilked and milked.

I have been spending some real quality time with senior citizens lately in my capacity as a hospice volunteer, and I have even taken to going into senior facilities to entertain with my guitar. Getting old is a confusing thing for some, but if you have enough money you can be kept somewhat comfortable. My last visit to a senior living facility revealed that most of the seniors were happy and many attributed that to the staff.

In the old days, families stayed together and took care of the elders. There were multiple generations in many households. Now we have senior homes and nursing homes — all of them money funnels, where you trade a lifetime of savings for “a place for mom.”



At The A.L.F……
 


We all know as we get older, our tastes change. Folks who used to dress in outrageous outfits now lean to more conservative attire. The action-adventure films we used to find so intriguing have given way to movies with more family values rather than a barrage of bullets. But perhaps the most noticeable change for me and many of our residents here at the A.L.F. is what we like to eat. And some of it may surprise you. Take oatmeal, for example.


 For most of my life, the very thought of starting the day with a steaming bowl of oatmeal (or any hot cereal) would have sent me screaming. It was strictly Kelloggs Rice Krispies or Corn Flakes for me. Now, on the rare occasion when they don’t have oatmeal on the breakfast menu, I feel cheated. And so it goes for many of the foods I hated as a kid but have an affinity for now. One of those things is meatloaf.

My mom was a great cook, and I would eat mostly anything she made. However, meatloaf wasn’t one of them. I’m not even sure why I didn’t like it. Maybe it was the name…meatloaf…that turned me off. Or, perhaps it was just one of those foods a kid is supposed to hate, like spinach or runny eggs or yogurt. In fact, I don’t think I appreciated the taste of a good meatloaf until I was well into my 30s. Which is a shame because I never got to taste my mom’s meatloaf.

However, not every old person’s tastes become more sophisticated. Many have reverted to eating very basic, bland, flavorless, mundane food. Anything exotic-sounding like tacos or gyro’s turns some of our older residents off. And heavens forbid there should be a hint of garlic in the pasta or chili flavor in the chili. The go-to food here, when anything foreign-sounding shows up on the menu, is a grilled cheese sandwich, on white bread of course. And, if the eggs are not cooked until they become unrecognizable as eggs, right back to the kitchen they go. Naturally, this does not make me happy. Because, instead of actually trying to make the food taste better, they have to cater to the majority. So, it’s over-fried eggs, garlic, basil and oregano-free spaghetti sauce and , like the lunch I had today, the most tasteless slab of meatloaf I have ever eaten. And to add insult to injury, they topped it off with canned brown gravy. They didn’t even bother to make their own from the meatloaf drippings.

Unfortunately, there is not much I can do about it. I used to attend the monthly food committee meetings they held here, but nothing I complained about made any difference. I have, mostly, resigned myself to never having a decent meal here. Fortunately, I have the where-with-all to order take out every now and again, and I can whip up something of my own in the microwave. But I can’t do that for all my meals. Thankfully, there’s garlic powder, seasoning salt and other off-the-rack spices and condiments I can slather over some food. It’s not the best, but it helps……………..







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GOOD DAY.
IT’S TUESDAY, AUGUST 16, 2022








4 Social Security Changes
Joe Biden Wants to Make



Whether you’re new to the workforce or have been retired for years, the chances are good that you’ll rely on Social Security income, to some varied degree, to make ends meet during your golden years.

Earlier this year, national pollster Gallup found that 89% of retirees are currently leaning on Social Security as a “major” or “minor” source of income. Meanwhile, 84% of non-retirees anticipate needing their retired worker benefit to help pay bills when they hang up their work coats for good. In other words, Social Security is vital to the financial well-being of most Americans.

Unfortunately, this pivotal program is on shaky ground.

Social Security is in absolutely no danger of going bankrupt or becoming insolvent. If you’ve earned the requisite 40 lifetime work credits to receive a retired worker benefit, you’ll be netting a monthly payment when you’re eligible. Since Social Security is primarily funded by the payroll tax on earned income, it can’t go bankrupt as long as people continue to work and pay their taxes.



Social Security:
5 Uncomfortable Questions
Every Woman Needs Answered

By Dawn Allcot


Women tend to live longer than men, on average, according to the Social Security Administration. Yet, they earn less than men over their lifetime. That leads to women receiving 81% of the amount men receive from Social Security during their retirement — when they might need that money to maintain their quality of life. Over a 30-year retirement, GoBankingRates recently reported, men will receive roughly $127,000 more from Social Security than women.

Social Security: Women Get $354 Per Month Less Than Men — Here’s Why
Find: 7 Surprisingly Easy Ways To Reach Your Retirement Goals

But that’s not the only way women and men differ when it comes to Social Security benefits. Depending on their personal situations, women may have to ask some hard questions about Social Security before they retire. It helps to know the answers so you can plan ahead.




Protecting senior citizens
From identity theft

By Jim Wallace

On Monday, WALB’s Jim Wallace spoke to Noula Zaharis, the Director of the Security and Charities Division with the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office.

“Noula, the question is, are the number of attacks on senior citizens trying to steal their personal or financial information, is it actually increasing nowadays?” Wallace asked.

“Yes, yes we are seeing an uptick in that space. We find that scammers are stealing billions of dollars from unsuspecting consumers. And it seems to be a big target toward seniors and the impact on families and the victims is devastating, especially for our seniors,” said Zaharis.




70% of Seniors Will Face
This Giant Expense --
And Many Are Unprepared



I
n the course of retirement planning, workers need to factor in various future expenses. These include housing, hobbies and other pastimes, and healthcare.

Now it's hardly a secret that medical costs tend to increase with age. And it's a fairly well-known fact that healthcare coverage under Medicare is by no means free, so it's important that workers set aside money to cover their future medical bills whether by padding their 401(k)s and IRAs or funding health savings accounts.

But one big misconception about Medicare is that coverage is all-encompassing. That's hardly the truth. Not only does Medicare not pick up the tab for common services like eye exams and dental care, but it also won't cover a major expense that can wreak havoc on seniors' finances -- long-term care. And the sooner you're aware of that, the sooner you can make a plan so you and your loved ones aren't stuck with astoundingly high costs.






Cognitive decline linked to
Ultraprocessed food
By Sandee  LaMotte



E
ating ultraprocessed foods for more than 20% of your daily calorie intake every day could set you on the road to cognitive decline, a new study revealed.

We all know eating ultraprocessed foods that make our lives easier -- such as prepackaged soups, sauces, frozen pizza and ready-to-eat meals -- isn't good for our health. Nor is gobbling up all the pleasure foods that we love so much: hot dogs, sausages, burgers, french fries, sodas, cookies, cakes, candies, doughnuts and ice cream, to name just a few.

Ultra-processed foods now account for two-thirds of calories in the diets of children and teens

Studies have found they can raise our risk of obesity, heart and circulation problems, diabetes and cancer. They may even shorten our lives.




Jarlsberg cheese may help
Stave off osteoporosis



E
ating Jarlsberg cheese may help to prevent bone thinning and stave off osteoporosis, research suggests.

Jarlsberg is a mild cheese made from cow’s milk, with regular holes that mean it is classified as a Swiss-type cheese, although it originates from Norway. It is rich in vitamin K2, which has previously been found to improve bone health.

The results of a study published in the journal BMJ Nutrition Prevention & Health suggest a daily portion could be beneficial to bone growth and regeneration.

Participants in the study were given a daily portion of either Jarlsberg or camembert, which is poor in vitamin K2. Signs of bone growth increased with Jarlsberg consumption and fell slightly in the camembert group, the authors said.






At 100, world's oldest practicing doctor likes
Martinis, snowshoeing, working out

By A. Pawlowski



Ask Dr. Howard Tucker about people who want to retire early and he’s incredulous. At 100, the neurologist has been working in medicine for 75 years.

Guinness World Records has named him the world’s oldest practicing doctor. Tucker just recently stopped seeing patients, but he’s still teaching medical residents at St. Vincent Charity Medical Center in Cleveland, Ohio, heading to work twice a week.

“I look upon retirement as the enemy of longevity,” Tucker told TODAY during a recent video call. He has a computer and smartphone, and is determined to keep up with technology.







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GOOD DAY.
IT’S MONDAY, AUGUST 15, 2022







Miami-Dade mayor asks for probe
Into party switch claims



M
IAMI (AP) — The mayor of Miami-Dade County has requested that prosecutors look into allegations that elderly residents of the Little Havana neighborhood in Miami had their party affiliations switched without their knowledge.

Democratic Mayor Daniella Levine Cava sent an official request late Friday to the local State Attorney to investigate reports that elderly residents of a public housing complex in the heavily-Cuban neighborhood had their party affiliation switched from Democrat to Republican without their knowledge.

Levine Cava did not specify how many voters had complained. Other Florida Democratic leaders also have asked for an investigation.




Are All These Doctor Visits Necessary?
By Michele C. Hollow


Deciding which medical procedures you can omit depends on your health and your goals

While telling my mom about the next medical procedure I scheduled for her, she replied, "Enough with the doctor visits."

She has a point. In the previous six months, I had arranged for her to be questioned and examined by an army of medical professionals, including an audiologist, a geriatrician, a physical therapist and several specialists at Montefiore Medical Hospital's Center for the Aging Brain in Yonkers, New York. She wants these appointments to stop.

Read more  >> CLICK HERE

 

Research Finds Biomarkers in
Older Adults With Late-Life Depression


Major depression in older adults is very common, disabling, and increases the risk of many diseases of aging, including Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, cardiovascular issues and even mortality. Therefore, it constitutes a major public health issue, especially considering the growing number of older adults in the U.S. and worldwide.

Many older adults with depression do not experience full resolution of their depressive symptoms with antidepressant treatment.

Improving or achieving full resolution of depression in older adults is a major clinical challenge, and approximately 50% of patients experience persistent depressive symptoms after antidepressant treatment.




Survey Highlights Lack of
Awareness with Hearing Loss

By Brittany Rall



A new Cleveland Clinic study is highlighting the lack of awareness about hearing loss among adults between the ages of 50 and 80 here in the United States.

According to the results, only 10% are able to properly identify what’s considered a “normal” range of hearing.

“Unfortunately, the results of the survey really weren’t that surprising. They are important for people to understand, but the fact that they were so underwhelming is pretty much what we expected,” said Sarah Sydlowski, AuD, PhD, MBA, audiology director for the hearing implant program and associate chief improvement officer for Cleveland Clinic. “We know that patients don’t understand hearing loss and how important hearing really is for overall health.”




24 Restaurant Chains
That Offer Senior Discounts


Are you cooking for fewer people these days? Once the kids grow up and move out, family meals fall by the wayside. For some reason, it’s just not as much fun to cook for one or two people, and you’d much rather eat out or order in.


Of course, restaurant dining comes at a cost. For those on a fixed income, the expense of eating out is even harder to swallow.

To make it easier, we’ve rounded up several restaurant chains across the country that offer “senior” discounts. Many of these deals are available to diners 50 years old and up.









This is the best chance the Democrats have had to finally put the lid on the greatest threat to American democracy since the Civil War. Of course, I’m talking about the former president and would-be dictator for life, Donald J. Trump. And if they don’t take advantage of the recent goings-on involving the crate-loads of highly sensitive documents hidden away in that Eagles Nest with palm trees, Mar-a-Lago, they will have lost the chance of a lifetime. And by “take advantage” I mean it’s time to take off the gloves, put on the brass knuckles and fight dirty, like the gutter-dwelling Trump supporters do so well.

The Democrats should organize MAGA-style rallies right now. Packing the bleachers of local sports venues with wild-eyed, sign-carrying, slogan-shouting maniacs, just like Trump has been doing since before 2018. And, they (the Democrats) should have people like the Vice President, Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi out there, with looks of indignation on their faces and rhetoric-rich speeches egging the crowd on with phrases like “Lock HIM up” and, “Hey, hey D.J. How many boxes have you hidden away?” Then, they should make sure the Sunday news programs are filled with Democratic politicians berating the former president every chance they get. And they should be unflappable in their position, exactly like mad dog right wing Republicans do when journalists try to ask an actual question pertaining to the facts and all they get for an answer is the party line.

In case this approach is an offense to your sensibility as a Democrat and a human being, remember who you are dealing with. Americans are not what they used to be. Facts and truth have taken a back seat to innuendo and rumors. Conspiracy theorists have become the disseminators of what people believe is the real news. And the only way to combat this is to get down to that level and feed the people what they want to hear. The only difference is, this time, there is real, substantive evidence of a crime. Unlike what Trump claimed that Hillary Clinton had done with some emails. This is real ink-on-paper marked as classified material that nobody, even a former president, should have in their possession and kept in an unsecured location.

The problem is, we liberals believe in restraint and the truth will eventually win out. While that may have been okay ten years ago, it doesn’t work today. And it’s time we learned that. Social media now controls what is true. It panders to the lowest denomination of the American population. And, as we have learned from the results of the last two elections, there are plenty of low-denomination people out there. And they vote. 

At one time, even a hint of what Trump is accused of would be enough to put an end to his political career forever. Instead, it has actually bolstered his chances of running and cemented the support of his followers. The more the government says he did wrong, the more those idiots like him. They like him to where, when he runs in 2024, he will automatically be the front-runner. If that isn’t enough to scare the crap out of you, I don’t know what is. This is no time to be nice. Our democracy is at stake, and so is the soul of our nation. Here, it’s okay to put aside the decorum and civility and get dirty because you know they will………








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Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com

GOOD DAY.
IT’S SATURDAY, AUGUST 13, 2022






100 questions to ask to get
To know someone better

By Katelyn Chef


W
hen we were younger, making new friends was simply a part of everyday life. However, it can be more challenging as an adult, especially when you factor in work stresses, cross-country moves and major life changes.

No matter if you’re looking for love, traveling somewhere new or trying to widen your social circle, the key to building meaningful connections is knowing the right questions to ask.

Hobbies and pop culture (think: books, movies, music and TV shows) are a good starting point since they are something we can all bond over, according to Susan Winter, relationship expert and bestselling author.




Our Senior Ladies and Hair Loss
By M.L. Holly


When I was in my twenties, it never occurred to me that I would be talking about losing my hair. However, in my sixties, hair loss is my reality.

I am a shower person. There is nothing like standing under the sprinkling of water at the perfect temperature while washing my hair. Sometime last year, during my usual amazing spa shower and hair washing, I noticed too much hair in the drain catcher.

Find out which CBD product is best for you

Once I began to dry my hair, I realized that not only was it coming out as I washed it, but it was also coming out in my comb and my hands. Not just a little hair, it was a handful. I could not believe how much of my crown ended in the garbage. By the time I was finished and looked at the hair that was no longer attached to my scalp, I had some concerns. However, I decided not to let them turn into panic.




The 6 Best Herbs to
Plant for Beginners

By Dana Schulz

Compared to big, beautiful houseplants or flowering outdoor garden beds, herbs can feel like child's play. But the truth is that growing herbs takes just as much finesse, and they're not all created equal. If you're thinking of starting your own herb garden—whether inside on your windowsill or in the backyard—we've spoken to plant and garden experts about which herbs are the best for beginners. Read on to learn what makes them easy to care for, and how you can best keep them flourishing.

You don't have to love pizza and pasta to grow basil—though it certainly doesn't hurt! The Italian staple is considered one of the most low-maintenance herbs. "Basil's easy to care for and grow because it tolerates summer heat, it produces a ton of leaves, and it'll keep producing as long as you keep it pruned," says John Thomas, founder of Backyard Garden Geek.

Basil does well in a pot or the ground, but either way, it likes moist soil and requires about one inch of water per week, according to Daniel Powers, founder of The Botanical Institute. Of course, if you've planted outside, super-hot weeks may warrant a little extra water. "If you plan on growing basil in a pot, make sure that it gets plenty of sun," Powers says.




St. John’s Researcher Studying Sharks
For Clues to Cure Alzheimer’s,
Parkinson’s Diseases



Jai Dwivedi, Ph.D., Assistant Professor and Director of Laboratory Instruction in the Department of Biological Sciences at St. John’s University, has been fascinated by sharks since childhood—and that fascination has led him to research the species for clues to curing two vexing human conditions: Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

It’s not as far-fetched as it sounds, Dr. Dwivedi said. Sharks and stingrays, closely related, have the unique ability to replace deteriorating brain-cell neurons. Among humans, who are unable to replace such neurons, brain cell deterioration is thought to contribute to the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.

“We study sharks because of what they can teach us,” said Dr. Dwivedi, who received his doctorate in biology from St. John’s in 2005. “If you want to know what might happen to humans in the future, why not study a species that has inhabited the planet largely unchanged for one million years?”



 





G
ood morning! Have you ever thought all is well, then out of nowhere, the bottom falls out from under you and your left wondering “how could this happen?”

If you have a cold, you take medicine to relieve the symptoms. You get a flu shot to prevent the virus. Then there are more serious diseases of which there is no cure. Some things are simply out of our control.

Parkinson’s disease is slowly progressive, leaving people with a difficult gait, rigid limbs, tremors, shuffling and a loss of balance. My dad had Parkinson’s disease. His gait was affected, thus his balance was also affected. The disease eventually started affecting his brain causing hallucinations.


‘Grandfluencers’ Are Sharing
A New Vision of Old Age

By Charley Locke

Robert Reeves, 78, spends most days lounging by the pool, taking in the low-desert sun with his friends and neighbors. The four of them talk about what’s new — recovery from a recent corrective foot surgery, some chronic inflammation issues — and record videos for social media, where they’ve amassed millions of followers as the Old Gays.

On a blistering afternoon earlier this month, Jessay Martin, 68, headed across the street for the usual poolside confab, stopping to grab a Bud Light Seltzer Pineapple from the fridge on his way out to the patio. There, he sat down in a stuffed armchair beside a well-endowed wooden sculpture of the male form and rubbed sunscreen into his bald pate as the group discussed the day’s video concept: an outfit transformation set to the rapper Jack Harlow’s single “First Class.”

“I need to wear my pretty underwear for this,” Mr. Martin said. “I need to have my ruffles on my rump.”

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE


What are my options for
Financing long-term care?



Question: I’m trying to help my mom plan for the next steps for my 86-year-old father. What are the options for financing long-term care? She’s so worried they’ll get turned down by Medicaid that she hasn’t even started the application yet. I’m hoping to let her know there are options.

Answer: It’s great you’re helping your parents with this. Long-term care is a very common need. More than two-thirds of current seniors can expect to need some long-term care. The costs can be daunting, particularly for seniors with significant needs such as memory care and or mobility issues. Here are some avenues to explore to help finance them:

 Check whether your father’s life insurance policy includes a rider for long-term insurance. A rider for long-term care allows the holder of the policy to access some of the benefits in order to meet the costs of long-term care. Just know this option is likely to be costly. A less expensive option could be to add what’s known as an accelerated death benefits (ADB) rider to his policy. Be aware that both options come with restrictions and will reduce the policy benefits ultimately paid out to the beneficiaries.





May has been Older Americans Month, but I’ll bet you haven’t seen a lot of celebrations. Despite a rapidly aging population, little has been done in the policy arena to ensure less wealthy older Americans can access affordable housing and receive the care they need with ease and dignity.

In 2019, there were 54 million Americans aged 65 and older, making up 16% of the population; that share is projected to grow to 22% by 2040. Almost 5 million of these individuals lived below the poverty line, and another 2.6 million were dangerously close. If you sense urgency in those numbers, you are on the right track.

Across the country, affordable housing is a critical issue; older Americans consistently see their resources dwindle and confront long waitlists at retirement homes. As affordable housing options shrink, the number of older adults experiencing homelessness rises. In 2019, before the COVID-19 pandemic, a University of Pennsylvania housing study issued a sobering estimate that the number of homeless older Americans will triple over the next decade. We must act fast and mobilize efforts to provide affordable housing options for older adults.



A young person's game?
A third of over 50s are investing in crypto


If you assumed crypto was just a young person's game, think again.

More people in the United States than ever before are turning to cryptocurrencies to help fund their retirement, it seems, even as the recent market carnage provides a stark reminder that this volatile market is not for the faint-hearted.

Some 27 per cent of Americans aged 18-60 - around 50 million people - have owned or traded crypto in the past six months, a poll published last week by crypto exchange KuCoin found.

Yet older people are more devoted to the young asset class than the general population, according to the survey carried out at the end of March, with 28 per cent of those aged 50 and above betting on crypto as part of their early retirement plans.



Old-age care guide that
No family can afford to ignore



If it ever gets to the stage when I can’t look after myself, just take me outside and shoot me.

It’s a blunt phrase, which I hate, but is probably familiar to many, no doubt meant in jest but with a bitter grain of truth to it.

As a dementia nurse with more than three decades of experience, I know it’s something often said as a way of deflecting conversation about what may well be inevitable. And I understand the sentiment.

No grown-up likes the thought that, one day, we will lose our faculties; that we will need someone to help us with the most basic of tasks, from washing and dressing to eating and even going to the loo. Yet most of us will need to be cared for at some point, probably as we reach the later stages of life, whether by a family member or professional carers.



At 99, iconic producer Norman Lear
Doesn't want to quit working.
Can work help us all live longer?

By Sandee LaMotte

American producer, writer and director Norman Lear, creator of such iconic 1970s television characters as the bigoted blowhard Archie Bunker in the sitcom "All in the Family," turns 100 in July.

On Thursday, at an early celebration for Lear at the Life Itself conference, a health and wellness event presented in partnership with CNN, he told the audience his secrets to living to a ripe old age: Lox and bagels, the love of his family, laughter and a life of invigorating work.

"I like getting up in the morning with something on my mind, something I can work on ... to some conclusion," Lear said.

Over the last century, Lear has done it all. He was executive producer of the cult movie classics "The Princess Bride" and "Fried Green Tomatoes" and was nominated for an Academy Award for best screenplay for "Divorce American Style." His sitcom spinoffs of "All in the Family" dominated '70s and '80s television, tackling topics of racism, feminism and social inequalities no one had yet dared touch. His political advocacy even led to the establishment of the liberal political organization People for the American Way.




T
he Medicare Hospital Insurance Trust Fund will have sufficient funds to pay full benefits until 2028, according to the latest annual report released today by the Medicare Board of Trustees.

That’s two years later than last year’s report. The HI Fund, known as Medicare Part A, helps pay for inpatient hospital services, hospice care, and skilled nursing facility and home health services following hospital stays.

HI income is projected to be higher than last year’s estimates because both the number of covered workers and average wages are projected to be higher, according to the report. In addition, HI expenditures are projected to be lower than last year’s estimates in the beginning of the short-range period mainly due to the pandemic but are projected to become larger after 2023 due to higher projected provider payment updates.

“There is substantial uncertainty in the economic, demographic, and health care projection factors for HI trust fund expenditures and revenues,” the report notes. “Accordingly, the date of HI trust fund depletion could differ substantially in either direction from the 2028 intermediate estimate.”




We older people must fight for a better America,
And world, for younger generations

By Bill McKibben


I had the chance this month to spend a couple of weeks on an utterly wild and remote Alaskan shore – there was plenty of company, but all of it had fur, feathers or fins. And there was no way to hear from the outside world, which now may be the true mark of wilderness. So, bliss. But also, on returning, shock. If you’re not immersed in it daily, the tide of mass shootings, record heatwaves and corroded politicians spouting ugly conspiracies seems even more truly and impossibly crazy.

Camping deep in the wild is not for everyone, but there’s another way to back up and look at our chaos with some perspective – and that’s to separate yourself in time instead of space.

Until this past year it had never occurred to me to write anything like a memoir, because memoirs were for the exceptional: people who had overcome some great handicap, dealt with some revealing trauma, experienced something so remarkable that the rest of us could learn from the story.



New Tool Helps Older Adults Monitor
‘Attentional Performance’ During Driving



Researchers from North Carolina State University and Texas Tech University have developed a straightforward questionnaire that older adults can use to assess their “attentional performance” during driving. In proof-of-concept testing, the researchers have demonstrated the tool can predict which drivers are at increased risk of having accidents.

“We developed the tool, called the Attentional Failure during Driving Questionnaire (AFDQ), so that older drivers can recognize and monitor their ability to drive safely,” says Jing Feng, co-author of the study and an associate professor of psychology at NC State. “This study was focused on determining how effective the technique is at assessing attentional performance, and what it can tell us about actual driving performance.

As a group, older adults are more likely to get into fatal crashes – particularly past the age of 70. One reason is that, as we age, our attentional capabilities decline. For example, it becomes more difficult to monitor peripheral activities, such as what is happening to either side of the vehicle.



Reasons You Should Hire a
Professional Home Care Service

By Sarah Lowe


When people become older adults, it becomes hard to do the daily chores of life at that stage of life. More so, the health condition of seniors does not remain the same, and they become slow in certain activities – resulting in rapid fatigue.

Also, many seniors lack a sense of companionship, a friend, or just someone they can talk to and have a good time with.

In this blog post, we will discuss why good homecare services are beneficial for the well-being of senior citizens from the comfort of their own homes.

More Independence

Many times, you will see that people that turn old will often deny the fact that they find it hard to do their daily tasks with the same vigor as they did before. Partly, it’s a matter of having a sense of self-sufficiency and not wanting to lose their independence.




A
new film profiles real-life insomniacs and their struggles to get a good night's rest, and experts share how chronic insomnia impacts health

From time to time, almost everyone has trouble sleeping. While frustrating, occasional bouts of insomnia are expected and manageable. But for people that have chronic insomnia, the problem goes beyond just feeling exhausted for a few days or needing an afternoon double espresso to make it to the end of the workday.

Rachel Mills, the producer behind a new film, "The Quest for Sleep," says, "Before making the film, I thought of insomnia as a nighttime issue. I was surprised at its impact on people throughout their daytime hours. Chronic insomnia interferes with a person's ability to function in their daily life and affects their relationship with friends, family and co-workers."

Learn more  >> CLICK HERE


Majority of Aging Adults Say
They’re Not Moving

Baby boomers hold the majority of real estate wealth in the U.S.—and as they age, they increasingly say they plan to stay put in their current homes. Sixty-six percent of U.S. adults aged 55 and older say they expect to age in place, according to a new Freddie Mac survey.

But that could further exacerbate the housing supply shortage, the report notes. The housing supply in the U.S. has dropped to record lows over the past two years. Baby boomers are veering from traditional patterns of selling later in life and downsizing or moving to assisted living. That could prompt an even more severe housing shortage nationwide.

Baby boomers’ financial gains over the past five years may better equip them to stay in place, too, the survey says.

Still, baby boomers acknowledge that their home will require some degree of renovations to make the space more appropriate to age in place. But they feel confident that their personal savings and long-term retirement and investment accounts will allow them to afford to do so, the survey shows.



Does Aging-In-Place Work?
What We Don’t Know Can Hurt Us.

By Elizabeth Bauer

Aging-in-Place — most of us think of this as the decision, as we get older, to stay in our longtime family homes, even as increasing infirmity or cognitive decline makes this harder. We know there are support programs available, providing home health aides, assistance with yardwork or a wheelchair ramp, a “senior freeze” to keep property tax increases at bay, and so on. And our homes hold so many memories and are a source of affirmation of the success we’ve had in our lives.

But is aging-in-place really the right decision? Or, put another way, does it “work”? Is it the right path for us all to take as we age, or would we be better off if we moved somewhere more suitable — a single-level house, or a condo in an elevator building, or a home near public transportation, or any of the communities designed for older adults? Would we miss our neighbors in our old communities, or quickly adapt and be glad we’d gotten past our hesitancy?

In the book Aging in the Right Place from 2015, author Stephen Golant provides a number of reasons why that “right place” might be the longtime family home:




I
believe that it was Josh Billings, the pen name of 19th-century American humorist Henry Wheeler Shaw, who once proclaimed, " Debt is like any other trap, easy enough to get into, but hard enough to get out of."

Managing debt is a challenge many of us face. According to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York's quarterly report on household debt and credit, household debt totaled $15.58 trillion in the fourth quarter of 2021, an increase of $340 billion. That brings the total debt balance to $1.02 trillion more than it was at the end of 2020.

Still, getting out of debt is no easy task. It requires some sacrifice, discipline, and patience. What's more, you may have to change your habits. And, along the way, there will be unexpected expenses that can derail your repayment plan.

However, getting out of debt should be a financial priority. For example, you'll have more income. Take, for example, a $200,000 30-year mortgage at 4.5% interest. Having to pay that mortgage every month will cost you $1,013 a month. Even worse? The bulk of that will go toward interest rather than building equity.




NEXT BLOG MONDAY, AUGUST 15, 2022



©2022 Bruce Cooper

-30-





Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com

GOOD DAY.
IT’S FRIDAY, AUGUST 12, 2022









7 changes Americans are willing to make
To fix Social Security —
Including one with 'overwhelming bipartisan support'

By Lorie Konish



There are just 13 years before Social Security may not be able to pay full benefits, according to a recent annual report from the program’s trustees.

In 2035, just 80% of benefits will be payable if Congress doesn’t fix the program sooner.

Shoring up the program will generally mean raising taxes, cutting benefits or a combination of both. Democrats have floated several proposals to increase benefits and raise taxes, including one House bill they hope to bring up for a vote this year. Republicans have expressed their opposition to their plans.




Over 60? Think of Your Stage,
Not Your Age

By Richard Eisenberg



Stanford researcher Susan Wilner Golden says people should be assessed based on what they do rather than how old they are

There's a serious problem in America, says longevity expert Susan Wilner Golden, in the way many of us — and businesses — view people over 60: as a monolithic group.

In her new book, "Stage (Not Age)," Golden makes a case that chronological age no longer defines us, especially in the second half of life. It's the stage of life we're in that's most important. A 50-year-old and a 75-year-old, Golden says, may well be in the same stage of life, what she calls the "reinvention stage."

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE


Nursing Homes Must Exercise Caution
When Assisting Residents With
Medicare Advantage Changes



D
espite ample and specific guidance from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (“CMS”) dating back to 2015 regarding the measures nursing homes should take when assisting residents with Medicare Advantage (“MA”) disenrollment, on June 29, 2022, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York announced a $7.85 million settlement with a Bronx nursing home and its administrative support contractor for switching a number of residents’ coverage from MA to Original Medicare, often without those residents’ knowledge or consent. The conduct cited in the settlement occurred from 2016 to 2019.

Under 42 C.F.R. § 422.62(a)(4), eligible institutionalized individuals “at any time may elect an MA plan or change their election from an MA plan to Original Medicare, to a different MA plan, or from Original Medicare to an MA plan.” Moreover, they generally are not limited as to the number of changes they choose to make. However, applicable regulations and guidance make clear that any change in coverage should be initiated by the Medicare beneficiary or the beneficiary’s authorized representative.

As part of the settlement, the defendants in the case — TCPRNC, LLC d/b/a Plaza Rehab and Nursing Center (“Plaza”), and Citadel Consulting Group LLC d/b/a Citadel Care Centers LLC (“Citadel”) — admitted, acknowledged, and accepted responsibility for the following:



Older Americans ready for fall
COVID-19 boosters, poll finds

By Adam Barnes


Most older adults who have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine will likely get an updated booster shot when they are available this fall.  

Overall, 61 percent of adults over 50 are very likely to do so, according to a new national survey from the University of Michigan.

The number is higher among particularly vulnerable groups as 68 percent, respectively, of people over 65, Black adults over 50 and people with low incomes are very likely to get a COVID-19 booster.  





Myths About Retirement
Financial Planning


Planning for retirement is important to ensure you have enough financial resources to enjoy yourself in retirement. However, there's a lot of uncertainty about how much you need to save and how you should be saving, leading to an increase in myths about retirement financial planning. Here are just a few of the most common myths that you should look out for as well as their actual realities.


Myth: You Need to Save X Number of Dollars Before You Retire

We all have varying needs and wants which can affect our retirement plans. That's why saying that you need to hit a specific dollar amount before retiring can be too arbitrary. If you're seeking to live modestly in retirement, your annual expenses are going to be much lower than someone who wishes to live more extravagantly. You will need to determine your retirement living goals and work toward saving enough to maintain the lifestyle you desire which is why a specific dollar amount doesn't fit everyone's requirements.   

Here's how you can start determining your retirement financial goals — decide what type of retirement life you want to have. Is it enjoying several cruises? Is it golfing daily? Is it flying frequently to visit your family? Or is it settling into a retirement community and enjoying the amenities, activities, and dining already provided at no extra expense? Start with your retirement plans before determining how much you need to save to make it happen.

Learn more  >>  CLICK HERE


From The Editor...



In another life, I must have been an explorer. Before circumstances put me in the situation, I find myself in today, nothing made me happier than getting in my car, pointing its nose in a direction away from home and driving somewhere I’d never been before. I could find myself in places like an Amish farm in Pennsylvania or a Shaker colony in Massachusetts. Many times, I would visit historic sites like Valley Forge or Gettysburg. One of my favorites were the homes of former presidents like FDR’s place in Hyde Park, NY, and the nearby home of Samuel B. Morse, the inventor of the telegraph. Or. more often than not I would drive with no particular destination in mind and wind up near Chesapeake Bay, Maryland enjoying the best crab cakes I ever ate. Food is a very important part of exploring and sampling the local fare is part of the adventure. And, for those times when I didn’t feel like driving or I was over-extended on my credit card, I would explore closer to home. And all it cost me was the price of a subway ride.

A 20-minute subway ride would put me in the heart of one of the best places to explore in the world. New York City. And, while many don’t think of NYC as a great vacation spot, it still offers what most people want when they travel, excitement and adventure. But why would a born and bred native want to spend his free time in a place he knows well? The truth is, most New Yorkers see very little of what the city offers. Ask a group of native New Yorkers if they have ever been to the top of the Empire State Building or The Statue of Liberty or the United Nations, and they will tell you no. To be truthful, most New Yorkers just want to get out of the city as fast as possible after work and rarely take advantage of what out-of-towner’s see as legendary. So, when I retired and finally had time to do what I wanted, one of those to-do things on my list was to become a tourist in my own city. And, while viewing all the places in the guidebooks and finding them interesting and educational, the best thing about being a tourist in NYC is watching other tourists. They bring a new perspective to what we find mundane. That’s what I miss most now. I still have the urge to explore, and the fact I no longer have the means and the fortitude to do it makes me sad. Especially now.

My last trip to the city (and my first since 2012) was short and purposeful. All I got to see was some new apartment buildings along Manhattan’s East Side and the inside of the Federal Courthouse in Brooklyn. I longed to be able to get out of the van they sent for me and walk around. But even if I could somehow get the driver to stop, it would be in vain. My long-distance walking days are over. Someday, when I win the lottery, I’ll hire a car and driver and I will go to all the places in the city I have never seen. And, for one day, I’ll be a tourist again………………
 
 





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NEXT BLOG SATURDAY, AUGUST 13, 2022



©2022 Bruce Cooper

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Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com

GOOD DAY.
IT’S THURSDAY, AUGUST 11, 2022







Are senior citizens the future
Of smart technology?

By Robert Powell

Most of the current technology available is not designed with older aging adults in mind as the potential end user.

Keren Etkin, author of The AgeTech Revolution and publisher of The Gerontechnologist blog, is working to change all that. And she’s hopeful. In fact, she envisions a world in which technology, in the not-too-distant future, will take into account older adults in the design process as well as solve some of the biggest challenges in aging, including housing, transportation, social isolation and loneliness.

“Developing technology to tackle the challenges of aging is the single most important opportunity of the next decade,” she wrote in her book.




New prostate treatment getting patients
Home on the same day



A new prostate treatment at East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust (ESNEFT) is getting patients home faster than ever and slashing waiting times.

The ‘Rezum’ treatment involves injecting steam into an enlarged but benign prostate via the penis, which helps block off the blood vessels that supply the gland, subsequently making it shrink.

The new procedure is minimally invasive and allows patients to go home on the same day with a catheter that will can removed after just a week, meaning the patient’s recovery time is much quicker than more invasive techniques.




Agetech Innovators Take On Fall Prevention,
Mobility Challenges For Older Adults

By Marion Webb


As the global population ages, a crop of tech startups is rising to meet seniors’ needs and improve quality of life, including by keeping them upright and mobile.

AI-enabled technologies that can detect changes in a person’s gait to serve as an early warning system for potential health problems, or assist with mobility issues, in the case of Parkinson’s disease patients for example, are expected to see rising demand.

So are innovations to help reduce risk of falling. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, millions of people aged 65 and older suffer falls each year, with one in five falls resulting in serious injury – eg, head injuries or hip fractures. This leads to $50bn in medical costs, with Medicare and Medicaid footing 75% of the bill.




Telling your doctor the truth is important in
Receiving the best possible care


Trust has to run both ways in the healthcare setting, but too often, whether accidentally or intentionally, patients are not giving their healthcare providers the full story.

Brandi Giles, a nurse practitioner with Bon Secours St. Francis Health System, sees this in a few common circumstances.

Home remedies and supplements

Grandma’s sure-fire cure has its place, but in some cases, it might interfere with a needed medication.

“My master's thesis is on Appalachian folk medicine for this very reason,” Giles said. “What I've seen is that people won't necessarily be fully transparent about what they're taking at home for symptoms or even supplements. They fear that their Western medicine providers or their nurse practitioner, their physician will look down on them or tell them to stop taking it, or they'll think that they don't agree with it.”






Research Links Red Meat Intake,
Gut Microbiome, and Cardiovascular
Disease in Older Adults

By Meng Wang


Does eating more meat—especially red meat and processed meat—raise the risk of cardiovascular disease, and if so, why? Despite intense study, the impact of animal source foods on atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) is vigorously debated, and the mechanisms underlying potential effects of animal proteins remain unclear. Understanding the impacts of meat consumption is particularly important in older adults, because they are the most vulnerable to heart disease yet may benefit from intake of protein to offset age-related loss of muscle mass and strength.


Over the years, scientists have investigated the relationship between heart disease and saturated fat, dietary cholesterol, sodium, nitrites, and even high-temperature cooking, but evidence supporting many of these mechanisms has not been robust. Recent evidence suggests that the underlying culprits may include specialized metabolites created by our gut bacteria when we eat meat.

A new study led by researchers at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University and Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Institute quantifies the risk of ASCVD associated with meat intake and identifies underlying biologic pathways that may help explain this risk. The study of almost 4,000 U.S. men and women over age 65 shows that higher meat consumption is linked to higher risk of ASCVD—22 percent higher risk for about every 1.1 serving per day—and that about 10 percent of this elevated risk is explained by increased levels of three metabolites produced by gut bacteria from nutrients abundant in meat. Higher risk and interlinkages with gut bacterial metabolites were found for red meat but not poultry, eggs, or fish.




OP-ED





I will not go over all the details of the recently passed Inflation Reduction Act. For those of you who need a reminder of what the act contains, here’s a brief summary….

 • Enacts historic deficit reduction to fight inflation
• Lowers energy costs, increases cleaner production, and reduces carbon emissions
by roughly 40 percent by 2030
• Allows Medicare to negotiate drug prices and caps out-of-pocket costs to $2,000
• Lowers ACA health care premiums for millions of Americans
• Make biggest corporations and ultra-wealthy pay their fair share
• There are no new taxes on families making $400,000 or less and no new taxes on small businesses –
we are closing tax loopholes and enforcing the tax code.
 
As you can see, there’s something in there for everyone, especially seniors.
While the provisions affecting carbon emissions and lowering energy cost are good for America’s future, there are parts of the act that particularly interest seniors. The “capping” of out-of-pocket costs to $2000 and allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices will not only put actual cash back into senior's pockets but make it possible for them to afford previously unaffordable medication. But, like with everything else, you can’t please everybody. There are some that are very unhappy with this act. It doesn’t take a genius to figure who that is.


Let’s get this out of the way. The vote in the Senate should tell you all you need to know about whose interests lie where. Not one Republican voted in favor of the bill, all 50 of them. That led to the Vice President having to break the tie and get the bill passed. Does that mean none of the Republican senators could find something good about it? No. In fact, the bill is what it is (a watered-down version of what Democrats actually wanted) because many Republican senators forced compromises. But when it came time to actually vote, heaven forbid any of them should show some guts and vote for what they knew was right. That’s because a “Yay” vote would be political suicide. They are a bunch of scared-as-shit little boys (and girls) who are afraid of what the kids back home might think. However, there is another reason those guys across the aisle couldn’t support the act. All of them are so dependent on the three groups most affected by the legislation for monetary support that offending them would mean the end to their livelihoods and all those nice, juicy perks that come with it. Of course, I’m speaking of “Big Pharma”, “Big Energy”, and all those disgustingly rich SOB's who don’t enjoy having to pay taxes on their ill-gotten gains.

Big pharma is PO’d because the act allows Medicare to negotiate the price it will allow drug manufacturers to charge its beneficiaries. Not able to charge $800 for a $2.00 pill bothers them. And then there are the folks that think fossil fuel is the bee's knees and that we should depend on it for eternity to power our homes and run our cars because all that nasty carbon in our air is caused by farting cows and not oil or coal. And who can’t but feel sorrow for that top 1% of the population whose net worth is over $10mil? and who now will have to fork over a larger chunk of their loot to the IRS. They thought they had the best government their money could buy. And they would have had it if it weren’t for the fact the Vice President is a Democrat.

The Act is not great, but it’s a start. We’ll never get what is actually needed to combat climate change or affordable health care or any of the programs we need to become a truly great society. That is, not until we decide to stop allowing greed, consumption, and the uncontrolled accumulation of wealth to govern our lives………………







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NEXT BLOG FRIDAY, AUGUST 12, 2022



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GOOD DAY.
IT’S WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 10, 2022








Seniors get nothing
By voting for the GOP

BY Juan Williams


I turned 68 years old this year.

I did not vote for Donald Trump in 2016 or 2020.

I will not be voting Republican in this year’s midterms.

But polls show people over 65 leaning heavily Republican this November. An Economist/YouGov poll released Aug. 1 gave the GOP a 15-point advantage with this group.

To me, that means seniors will be voting against their own best interest.

Just last week, Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) said Social Security and Medicare should no longer be guaranteed as mandatory for seniors. He favors having them reviewed by Congress every year.




Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities
Give seniors the help they need to age in place

By Star Bradbury


Have you ever heard of a Naturally Occurring Retirement Community? You may not know it yet, but a few local communities and neighborhoods are already trying to get more organized around this excellent idea.
 
Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities (NORCs) are self-help communities that started springing up in 1992 with the founding of Community Without Walls in Princeton, N.J. They are not a formal community, but occur naturally in neighborhoods in small cities and urban areas, and are not cohousing.  

They offer a very popular alternative to moving into a senior living community, as the aim of a NORC is to keep seniors in their own home. A NORC “is a community that has a large proportion of residents over 60 but was not specifically planned or designed to meet the needs of seniors living independently in their homes,” according to Wikipedia.





NORCs: The benefits and drawbacks of
Naturally occurring retirement communities

By Joy Intriago



As time progresses the housing options for seniors increase exponentially. In fact, there are so many choices that sometimes it’s hard to determine which option is best. One of the fastest growing housing selections is NORCs. An acronym for Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities, a NORC is a place that wasn’t originally intended for the senior community, but houses a large amount of retired and elderly citizens.

Sizable elderly populations such as NORCs come about when people decide to age in place at their homes instead of re-locating. Naturally occurring retirement communities now have the NORC Supportive Services Program (NORC-SSP) in place to assist with healthy aging. Some of the key services the NORC-SSP includes are health care management and prevention programs, education, socialization, recreational and volunteer activities/opportunities, and social work services. Yet, as with any of life’s major choices, there are visible benefits and drawbacks.

Benefit 1: Community Building

Throughout a person’s life, he or she develops relationships with peers, co-workers, neighbors, and community. Just as it is trying for a child to change schools halfway through the semester, it is tough for someone to be taken out of his or her home and re-located. NORCs offer the opportunity to stay with the community one has planted roots in, as well as participate in activities that bring the inhabitants closer together. Socialization is an extremely important aspect of happy living and aging.



Older adults may be more likely than previous
Generations to have multiple health concerns

By Kristen Dalli


A
new study conducted by researchers from Penn State explored how different generations fare when it comes to chronic medical conditions. According to their findings, older adults are more likely than earlier generations to struggle with several health concerns.

“Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, we were beginning to see declines in life expectancy among middle-aged Americans, a reversal of more than a century long trend,” said researcher Steven Haas. “Furthermore, the past 30 years has seen population health in the U.S. fall behind that in other high-income countries, and our findings suggest that the U.S. is likely to continue to fall further behind our peers.”

Health risks for older adults

The researchers analyzed data from participants over the age of 51 enrolled in the Health and Retirement Study. They were most interested in understanding how many older people have more than one of the nine major types of chronic conditions: cancer, cognitive impairment, heart disease, diabetes, high depressive symptoms, high blood pressure, arthritis, lung disease, and stroke.



Older Generations Are
Reclaiming Rites of Passage

By Paula Span



Harry Oxman’s bar mitzvah at the Society Hill Synagogue in Philadelphia looked much like the traditional Saturday morning event.

He recited the customary prayers before and after the Torah reading. He discussed the meaning of the day’s Torah portion. He carried the sacred scrolls in a procession around the sanctuary. The rabbi offered a blessing; the congregation yelled a congratulatory “Mazel tov!” and tossed pieces of candy to symbolize the sweetness of the days ahead. Lunch followed, with toasts from family members.

The difference was that the celebration, a tradition that normally marks Jewish adulthood for 13-year-olds, occurred in 2019, when Mr. Oxman was 83. Because the 90th Psalm says that age 70 represents a full life span, some congregations offer this rite of passage — often for the second time — to those turning 83.





When admitting a loved one to a nursing home,
Be sure to read what you sign
(because you could be sued later)




When seniors need full-time institutional care, or when the injured or debilitated require similar 24/7 attention, loved ones — and even friends — must take care to read and re-read any documents that nursing homes and other long-term care facilities shove before them to sign during the stressful admissions process.

That’s because the owners and operators of the facilities soon may create a financial nightmare for the unwitting document signers, fueling what is the huge shame of the U.S. health care system: medical debt.

Most regular folks might think that the financial obligations incurred in long-term care facilities rightly belong to the adult residents. They’re 21 and older, and unlike minor kids carted into urgent, or emergency rooms for treatment, the residents typically have, until their situations suddenly shift, been responsible, including legally, for their lives and personal business.









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NEXT BLOG THURSDAY, AUGUST 11, 2022




©2022 Bruce Cooper

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Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com

GOOD DAY.
IT’S TUESDAY, AUGUST 9, 2022










Bernie Sanders crafts amendment to close
'holes' in Medicare that 'are harming seniors'

By Brett Wilkins


U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders will offer an amendment to the Democrats' revived reconciliation bill that would affirmatively answer activists' demands to expand Medicare benefits, the senator's office told Common Dreams on Friday.

"Today, in the wealthiest country in the world, it is shameful that so many of our seniors must go without the dentures, eyeglasses, and hearing aids that they need."

Sanders' office said the Vermont independent will seek a roll call vote on including the overwhelmingly popular proposal to extend dental, hearing, and vision coverage to all Medicare beneficiaries, provisions that were previously stripped from Democrats' once-ambitious $3.5 trillion reconciliation package.




Think You Can't Afford Long-Term Care?
Read This Now

By Mark Henricks


The costs of long-term care for older adults can be significant, and federal Medicare health insurance benefits do not cover most of these costs. Most people who incur costs for long-term care cover them with a combination of personal savings, long-term care insurance and Medicaid, among other sources. Consider working with a financial advisor
 as you find ways to pay for long-term care needs.

Costs of Long-Term Care

The average semi-private room in a nursing home cost $6,844 per month in 2016, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Community Living. A private room averaged $7,698 per month. Assisted living facilities typically cost $3,628 monthly. Home health aides went for $20.50 an hour and a day in an adult day healthcare center ran $68.

While long-term care insurance can be a good way to pay for long-term care costs, not just anyone can buy a policy. Long-term care insurance companies won’t sell coverage to people already in long-term care or having trouble with activities of daily living. They may also refuse coverage if you have had a stroke or been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia, cancer, AIDS or Parkinson’s Disease. Even healthy people over 85 may not be able to get long-term care coverage.




What Everyone Gets Wrong
About the Future of Social Security

By Katie Brockman


Social Security benefits are an integral source of income for millions of retirees, so it pays to understand as much as possible about how the program works.

There are some misconceptions about Social Security that could potentially affect your retirement plans, and there's one thing many people get wrong about the program's future -- especially when it comes to benefit cuts.

How stable is Social Security really?

One of the most common misconceptions about Social Security is that it's going bankrupt. While it is true that the program is on shaky ground, the situation isn't as dire as many people believe.

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE



Plan Ahead Before Seeking Nursing Home Care:
Avoid Unnecessary Debt for You and Your Family

By Natasha Meruelo


Many senior citizens may need the services of a nursing home or at-home care at some point in their life. You might assume that government assistance or health insurance will step in and cover the cost if you cannot afford these services. Unfortunately, neither health insurance nor Medicare covers long-term care. Because obtaining long-term care insurance can be very expensive, Medicaid could become your only option.

Medicaid coverage is not a given, however. If you have assets or recently transferred assets, Medicaid may determine you do not qualify for coverage until a certain amount of time has passed. If this happens, you and their family can face significant medical bills. If you cannot pay, nursing homes may take you to court to get reimbursed.

What steps can you take to avoid this? First, before applying for Medicaid, get a better understanding of the timelines in your state – known as lookback periods – that can affect your eligibility. Then you can engage in proper Medicaid or asset protection planning in advance of these timeframes. A good age to begin planning is around age 65, although everyone’s situation is different.





New report contains surprises
About best places to retire

By Kimberly Bonvissuto


Vermont is the best state — and Hartford, CT, is the best city — overall in the nation for senior living, according to a recent report examining quality-of-life factors for older adults and listing the best places to retire.


Caring.com
released a report on the country’s “Best and Worst Places for Senior Living.” The report considered 45 factors, including healthcare and affordable housing, as well as community engagement, transportation and workforce development, as drivers of quality of life across 50 states and 302 cities.

Vermont’s “scenic views and its close proximity to some of the most exciting cities in North America” make it a great place to retire, according to the website, which also rated it best for healthcare. But senior living options there tend to cost more than the national average, Caring said.




At The ALF….



Residents emerged from their cocoons Monday after a nearly 12 day interruption of what passes for a life here at the Asylum. Truthfully, we are becoming so used to these Covid related lockdowns, most residents just pick up where they left off. Bingo was back in full swing, as was the return to communal meals. And, while the fare was only slightly better than what was served to us in our rooms, it was the camaraderie which made the food palatable.

What was not palatable was the heat. The high today, here in the lower Hudson valley (LOHUD), hovered near the 95 degree mark, making it almost impossible to be outside. Usually, I try to get at least 20 minutes of direct sunlight a day. But after just 10 minutes, I was ready to pack it in and head for my nice, cool room, where my newly installed AC was cranking out lots of cold air. Not so for the rest of the facility. The old central air units could not keep up with the heat, making sitting in the common areas very uncomfortable. The dining room was particularly warm despite the AC units being set on high. Perhaps the rain forecast for later will help moderate the temperature. Besides, we could sure use the water around here.

As far as my bout with COVID is concerned, I’m pleased to say I am no worse for the wear. And, while I still don’t feel 100%, I feel much better. I asked if any of the other folks I hang with here came down with the virus, and I was pleased to find they did not. But there were several cases besides mine, and that’s what prompted the lockdown. Unfortunately, despite all the warnings, I observed many of our residents not wearing a mask or wearing it improperly. As our administrator told me a few weeks ago, it’s impossible to virus-proof the facility 100%. Some people are incapable of following instructions or, just, don’t want to. That makes the threat of re-infection a reality for me and for everyone here. Sadly, this has reinforced my theory that I will not see a complete end to this pandemic in my lifetime. Oh, by the way, did I mention there’s monkeypox and polio to worry about? Wear your mask and stay away from crowds. Better still, stay away from everybody…………………
 







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GOOD DAY.
IT’S MONDAY, AUGUST 8, 2022







Drugmakers Try To Scare Seniors
In Last-Ditch Effort To Stop
Democrats’ Economic Plan

By Kevin Robillard and Jonathan Cohn



T
he ad running in West Virginia opens with a harrowing scene: An elderly woman waits in a doctor’s office for test results.

Reading from a chart, the doctor delivers the bad news: Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) “is negotiating a bill that would strip nearly $300 billion from Medicare.” Research on the treatment the woman is receiving “may be stopped.”

“I wish I had better options for you, but I really think it’s time you started talking to your family,” the doctor adds before walking away and leaving the woman stunned.

The not-so-subtle implication of the ad: The Manchin-crafted economic deal the Senate will vote on this weekend is going to kill grandma. (Watch it above.)



Inflation Reduction Act would limit 
Medicare drug costs to $2,000 per year
By Harold Vazquez 



The Senate was set to vote on Sunday on a broad climate, tax and health care bill containing key measures to lower drug prices within the Medicare program, allowing the government to negotiate drug prices for the first time and protect senior citizens’ pockets. allowed to exit. The drug costs $2,000 annually.

The measures are part of the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, a comprehensive package that increases the Affordable Care Act premium subsidies and expands and adds new clean energy tax credits, among other provisions. The bill is expected to be passed by the Senate this coming week and then to vote in the House of Representatives, where it is also expected to pass.

The bill would allow the government to negotiate prices on select drugs, spend $2,000 a year on senior citizens’ drugs, and penalize drug manufacturers who inflate prices that exceed the inflation rate within the Medicare program. Under the law that established the Part D drug program in 2003, which was influenced by the pharmaceutical industry, the government is prohibited from interacting directly with drug manufacturers. Individual insurance companies that participate in Part D can negotiate, but they do not have the bargaining power of the federal government. Allowing the government to negotiate directly is expected to save about $100 billion by 2031, according to estimates from the Congressional Budget Office.




'Suicidal politics': Chris Wallace hammers
Ron Johnson's 'terrible policy' for Social Security

By Matthew Chapman


On CNN Thursday, analyst Chris Wallace tore into the proposal by Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) to require Social Security and Medicare to be continuously reauthorized — saying that the plan would be a disastrous policy, and a massively unpopular one as well.

"Chris, I want to have you listen to something that Senator Ron Johnson said about Social Security and Medicare," said anchor Brianna Keilar, playing a clip.

"What is mandatory are things like Social Security and Medicare," said Johnson in the clip. "If you qualify for the entitlement, you just get it no matter what the cost, and our problem in this country is that more than 70 percent of our federal budget, of our federal spending, what we ought to be doing is we ought to turn everything into discretionary spending so it is all evaluated, so we can fix problems or fix programs that are broken, that are going to be going bankrupt."



5% of people may suffer from long-term
Loss of taste and smell after COVID

By Linda Carroll


More than 5% of people who were infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 may have a long lasting loss of the senses of smell and taste, a new study finds.

Using a mathematical model and data from 18 earlier studies, an international team of researchers estimated that among those who had COVID-19, 5.6% were left with a persistent loss of smell, and 4.4% had long lasting loss of taste. The researchers also found that women were more likely than men to have persistent issues with smell and taste, according to the report published in The BMJ on Wednesday.

“We’re pretty excited about this new study,” said study coauthor Dr. Christopher von Bartheld, a neuroscientist and a professor of physiology and cell biology at the University of Nevada at Reno. “Now we know approximately how many people lose their sense of smell, and it’s a pretty huge number.”




How Memory Care Innovations Will
Reshape the Senior Living Continuum

By Tim Mullaney



The most frequent comment I heard at our inaugural BRAIN conference two weeks ago was: This event was badly needed, because memory care is given scant attention at most industry gatherings.

I’ve observed this to be true. At most events, perhaps one or two panels — if that — will be devoted to memory care.

That is, memory care is treated as a discrete, relatively small part of the senior living industry, which might seem to be the case; the 10 largest assisted living companies encompass nearly 111,500 units, while the 10 largest memory care providers count only about 37,300 units, according to 2021 Argentum data.







Should You Pay Off Your Mortgage
Before Retirement?

By Donna Fuscaldo




E
ntering retirement debt-free is a dream for many, particularly when it comes to paying off their mortgage. Who doesn’t want that burden lifted? But getting in the black from a housing standpoint doesn’t always make sense. In some instances, paying off your mortgage may cost you more than hanging on to the debt.

Determining what’s right for you requires lots of considerations, including your finances and your emotions. What’s right for one person may be wrong for another. With that in mind, here’s a look at when it makes sense to pay off your mortgage and when it doesn’t.

Pay off your mortgage:

If you want to lower your baseline expenses.
Retirement is expensive, and housing is a big part of it. If you have the cash and it’s earning less than your mortgage interest, paying off your loan could be a viable option. Especially if the idea of being charged to borrow money is nagging at you.

Learn more >>  CLICK HERE





Update 4

Hopefully, this will be the last of these updates. Not only am I feeling much better than I did a week ago, but the facility-wide lockdown that has kept nearly 200 of us isolated is scheduled to end today, Monday. This will be very welcome by both residents and staff. However, there is one thing that bothers me. Although I feel better, I continue to experience some coughing and nasal congestion. I understand that COVID symptoms may linger long after the virus is no longer detected but, given that even the President became reinfected, how do they know for sure I am not contagious without giving me a test? Should I insist?


 I any event, I’m glad this latest affront to my (and my fellow resident’s) freedom has ended. I’m also glad that no new cases of the virus were detected. Likewise, I’m also forced to do something I rarely do. Admit I was wrong about how we are the most protected group of people in the state and how we (residents of assisted living facilities) have been singled out as the only group (except prisoners) mandated to wear masks indoors. Apparently, no matter how hard you try, the virus and its continuing mutating variants will find its way into even the most infection-controlled environments. Therefore, I am altering my position on mask-wearing here at the ALF. My new mantra; Keep safe. Keep masked!…….....
 
 








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NEXT BLOG TUESDAY, AUGUST 9, 2022



©2022 Bruce Cooper

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Email: TheSeniorLog@Protonmail.com

GOOD DAY.
IT’S SUNDAY, AUGUST 7, 2022







Protect Yourself from
Mortgage Refinance Fraud


Fritz Kreisler was a highly accomplished violinist and composer in the early 20th century. His compositions are regularly performed as encores and in recitals. In addition to performing the classic repertoire and his own compositions, Kreisler was known for premiering violin arrangements of unknown compositions by famous 17th and 18th-century composers, such as Vivaldi, Pugnani, and von Dittersdorf.


Except the compositions weren't written by those famous composers. Instead, they also were Kreisler's compositions – written so skillfully in the styles of the old masters that many experts were fooled.

The truth finally came out in 1935 when a music researcher pushed for more information about the original works Kreisler had arranged for violin. Kreisler eventually admitted that he had written the compositions early in his career when he wanted to enlarge his repertoire. He thought it would be "inexpedient and tactless" to perform a program of entirely his compositions.




Can You Take Over-the-Counter Medicines
For COVID Symptoms at Home?



As new omicron subvariant variants continue to spread, bringing mild COVID symptoms to some who get infected, more people are experiencing symptoms, health officials have said.


So what can you do to help yourself from home?

Chicago's top doctor addressed questions surrounding over-the-counter treatment for mild COVID symptoms Tuesday.

"Over-the-counter stuff really can be quite good," Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady said. "So don't be afraid of taking some over-the-counter cough drops or cold and flu medication, or especially Tylenol or ibuprofen - assuming that you don't have some other condition where you shouldn't take those."



4 Important Things We
Get Wrong About Aging
BY MADELEINE HAASE

That’s straight from an expert with decades of psychological research focused on aging—so you can trust her that you haven’t left your best years behind. Laura Carstensen, Ph.D. is the founding director of the Stanford Center on Longevity, where she studies motivational and emotional changes that occur with age and the influence these changes have on the way we process information.


Her research on aging has been revolutionary in the field of psychology: She says that “people haven’t been asking the right questions about aging. How are older people actually doing emotionally? We just sort of assumed we knew the answer.”

There were previous studies that found that older people said they were doing well emotionally—but researchers were so sure that couldn’t be true that they chalked it up to older people not knowing how to process their own emotions anymore, Carstensen says.

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE



Why life in your 70s may
Be your happiest ever
By Richard Eisenberg

I’m writing this unretirement column three days after turning 66 (and four months before reaching my Social Security “Full Retirement Age”). So, my 70s are just around the corner. Until recently, that gave me pause.


But after seeing what people in their 70s said in the recent AARP/National Geographic “Second Half of Life Study” and interviewing seven experts on aging — four between 70 and 81 — I’m now looking forward to my next decade.

After reading what I learned, I think you might become more enthusiastic about prospects for your 70s, too. (A few of today’s celebrity septuagenarians: Jeff Goldblum, Mick Jagger, Dolly Parton, Helen Mirren and Bruce Springsteen.)




3 ways women can take charge
Of their financial future


Janet Yellen made history in 2021 when she became the first woman to serve as U.S. treasury secretary. She now plays a critical and highly visible role in the country’s financial and monetary matters.

Yellen’s economic leadership comes at a time when women are increasingly taking charge of their money, and have more money and power than ever before. According to McKinsey & Co., women in the U.S. are set to inherit an estimated $30 trillion from aging parents or spouses by 2030.

However, while many women are comfortable in the financial driver’s seat, on the whole, they don’t engage with their finances as much as men. A 2020 U.S. Bank Women and Wealth Insights Study shows that more women than men associate financial planning with stress and anxiety. Women are also less comfortable making retirement and investment decisions, and they exhibit lower levels of financial literacy compared with men, according to a 2020 Federal Reserve survey.





Best fitness trackers for older adults
to encourage regular exercise,
Track health metrics and more

By Jessica Toms


Regular exercise is critical for older adults, but how do you know as a caregiver if your senior’s exercise program is achieving the intended results or providing the benefits they seek? As an older adult, it’s important to keep a close eye on baseline metrics and the body’s response to physical exertion. That responsibility often falls to the caregivers, who then also act as coach, champion and cheerleader.

Thanks to advances in wearable fitness tracking technology, access to exercise and health data is easier than it’s ever been. Beyond the basic step count, you can now easily track resting heart rate, sleep metrics, stress levels and even recovery rate between exercise. In fact, a recent study found that wearing a fitness activity tracker actually resulted in more time spent exercising among older adults who wore one regularly.

When it comes to outfitting the older adult in your care with a fitness tracker, there are several things to consider:






5 Signs Your Sleep Medication is
Hurting You, Doctors Warn
By Megan Hageman



The negative effects from a lack of sleep go far beyond the bags under your eyes. Not getting enough shut-eye can lead to memory problems, irritability, and more—something that people suffering from sleep disorders such as insomnia know all too well. About one in three American adults struggle to sleep at night, according to the Sleep Foundation, and many turn to sleep medication for relief.

"Medications utilized for insomnia can help in different sleep cycles depending on what an individual needs," says Reema Hammoud, PharmD and AVP of Clinical Pharmacy at Sedgwick, a third-party claims management provider. "Some drugs help with falling asleep, some help with staying asleep, and others help regulate circadian rhythm."

These drugs, however, are meant for short-term use. When used for too long or in high doses, they can have detrimental consequences to your health. Read on to discover which signs might mean your sleep medication is doing more harm than good.




Medicare recipients to see
Premium cut — But not until 2023


Medicare recipients will get a premium reduction — but not until next year — reflecting what Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra said Friday was an overestimate in costs of covering an expensive and controversial new Alzheimer’s drug.

Becerra’s statement said the 2022 premium should be adjusted downward but legal and operational hurdles prevented officials from doing that in the middle of the year. He did not say how much the premium would be adjusted.

Medicare Part B premiums jumped by $22 a month, to $170.10, for 2022, in part because of the cost of the drug Aduhelm, which was approved despite weak evidence that it could slow the progression of Alzheimer’s.




Death rates soared for older
Americans during omicron wave

By Benjamin Mueller and Eleanor Lutz

Despite strong levels of vaccination among older people, COVID-19 killed them at vastly higher rates during this winter’s omicron wave than it did last year, preying on long delays since their last shots and the variant’s ability to skirt immune defenses.



This winter’s wave of deaths in older people belied the omicron variant’s relative mildness. Almost as many Americans 65 and older died in four months of the omicron surge as they did in six months of the delta wave, even though the delta variant, for any one person, tended to cause more severe illness.

While overall per capita COVID death rates have fallen, older people still account for an overwhelming share of them.




People who 'live in place' may
Enjoy better overall health



As people get older, it might get harder to do everyday activities such as cooking or driving. If a person is unable to take care of themselves, they may need to move into a nursing home or assisted-living facility for extra help. However, new research suggests people who live at home (“live in place”) or at an independent living facility may be more likely to live longer and healthier without needing to be transferred to a nursing home.

Most older adults want to live in their homes than go to a nursing facility, according to the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP). Armed with this information, researchers at the University of Missouri sought to find ways to keep older adults at home without compromising their health and well-being. The team looked at eight years of health data from a senior living facility called TigerPlace that gives support to residents while providing privacy through individual apartments. There is also the opportunity to socialize in different events offered by the facility.

TigerPlace residents — with an average age of 84 — participated in health assessments by registered nurse care coordinated every six months. The exams measured a resident’s ability to complete daily tasks, cognition, depression, physical ability, and risk of falling. The researchers also received data on residents’ activity, respiratory, and heart rate levels through several motion sensors. The team used any abrupt change to the group’s routine or new falls to calculate a person’s risk for illness such as pneumonia.




Your Social Security Check Might Be Taxed.
Here's How That Could Change

By Lorie Konish


Social Security benefits are taxed based on a unique formula established by Congress in the 1980s and '90s.

Because the thresholds where those levies are applied have not been adjusted, more people have become subject to those taxes over time.

Congress may address this issue when it eventually takes up Social Security reform in an effort to shore up the program.

Death and taxes are two certainties in life, as the saying goes.

But many people may not realize their Social Security benefits they receive from the government are also subject to taxes.

The way in which those levies are applied is unique.

A recent MassMutual quiz found just 42% of 1,500 respondents near retirement were able to correctly identify whether the following statement is true or false: "Social Security retirement benefits are subject to income tax just like withdrawals from a traditional [individual retirement] account."



How Seniors Can Get
Involved In Foster Care

By Virginia Pelley

There were more than 400,000 young people in the U.S. foster care system in 2021[1]. Many older adults—given their emotional maturity, broad life experience and parental wisdom—can be great resources to help these kids thrive.

Not everyone is cut out for the challenge of foster parenting, says John DeGarmo, founder and director of The Foster Care Institute and author of The Foster Care Survival Guide. But opportunities abound for seniors to get involved in foster care in some capacity.

“Every single community in this country has children in crisis, and foster care agencies would love for people to step up and help,” says DeGarmo. “The average agency is overwhelmed, understaffed and underpaid, and, as a result, foster parents are undersupported.”



Overcoming Your Bias Against
Aging Can Improve Your Life



Becca Levy of Yale University says we can fix even deeply rooted negative views about aging, which many of us do not see in ourselves

People's beliefs about aging have a profound impact on their health, influencing everything from their memory and sensory perceptions to how well they walk, how fully they recover from disabling illness and how long they live.


When aging is seen as a negative experience (characterized by terms such as decrepit, incompetent, dependent, and senile), individuals tend to experience more stress in later life and engage less often in healthy behaviors such as exercise. When views are positive (signaled by words such as wise, alert, accomplished, and creative), people are more likely to be active and resilient and to have a stronger will to live.

Read more  >>  CLICK HERE



Is it time to scrap the ‘senior citizen’ tag?
By Sushmita Bose


My aunt — my favourite aunt — has always been a sedentary person. Even when she was 30, there was nothing she’d like better than be a couch potato and watch movies on the trot on our VCR player. Later on, she graduated, with aplomb, to watching soap operas in the afternoon; at times, she’d bypass the ritual of the afternoon tea because it would be too much of an effort to get up, walk 14 feet to the kitchen, and embark on the onerous task of making tea. “Uff, I’m sooooo exhausted,” she would say.

Of course, everyone else in the family would constantly be on her case, and ask her to move around, go for a walk, take a yoga class. She would nod her head vigorously — but then settle down in bed. She was never out of shape, and was quite a looker, so one couldn’t use the “you’re becoming fat” line to bait her.

My aunt’s now touching 70, and mentally the same as she used to be — but she’s developed a few health problems. I was speaking to my cousin — her son — the other day (she has been living with him for a couple of months), and he said she refuses to budge from one corner to the other, which may be the reason why she’s developed these health issues in the first place. “Yeah, but — as far as I remember — she used to be like that even when she was in her 30s,” I said.




Coffee bad, red wine good?
Top food myths busted

By Rebecca Seal


Modern nutritional science is only a hundred years old, so it’s no surprise that we’re constantly bamboozled by new and competing information about what to put into our bodies – or that we sometimes cling to reassuringly straightforward food myths which may no longer be true. In a world where official dietary advice seems to change all the time, and online opinions are loud and often baseless, we ask eight food and drink experts to cut through the noise and tell it like it is.
What’s the truth about coffee?

“I’m surprised that people still think coffee is bad for them,” says Dr Astrid Nehlig, research director of the French medical research institute, Inserm, and one of the world’s leading researchers into coffee, health and brain function. When she first started researching coffee 30 years ago, she often encountered producers who were nervous that their products might be found to be harmful. “But a lot of progress has been made in the last 10-15 years.”

So what do we know, now? “Coffee contains more than 1,000 compounds, so what we are looking at is not just about caffeine,” says Nehlig. “It increases alertness but at the same time relaxes us. It focuses and increases attention, but prevents sleep, especially if you drink too much, or too late.” We are not all equal on this front: caffeine targets our brain’s adenosine receptors but half of us are immune to this effect – which explains all those people who drink espresso after dinner and conk out at 11pm. “It’s also about the accumulation of caffeine during the day, which is related to how we metabolise caffeine – in one group of the population, caffeine builds up in the body, but the other group eliminates it very quickly.”




Drinking coffee may be linked