Aging – We’re not a society that embraces aging or being proactive in our self-care. Yet actions we can take to remain healthy and as active as possible are beneficial. Prevention and good habits are more important than we realize to ensure that as we age we remain healthy and able to care for ourselves as long as possible. Be proactive and take an interest in your health so that you can age healthy.
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Caregiving or care receiving is not for sissies. “That which does not kill us, makes us stronger,” German philosopher, Friedrich Nietzsche, knew what he was talking about. Grandma Mary, well into her 90’s shook her crooked arthritic finger at me and said “it’s no good to get old” Caregiver or care receiver, we have days when we ask, “what else could possibly happen?” Not the question to ask as the moment we think or utter these words, another unpleasant event occurs. Worry and negative thoughts, common in caregiving situations, are self-fulfilling events. Caregiving and caregiver support are important to advocating and to receiving better than average care. Optimism, a belief in success, and lifelong learning are all antidotes to help us feel more positive, less overwhelmed, and less anxious.
My mother wanted to donate her body to science after her death; she talked about this for years but did nothing to ensure her wish would actually become reality. The thought made me a bit queasy. I didn’t want my mother’s body used for experimental research even though I believe that the spirit goes elsewhere, leaving the body here on earth.
Martin is dedicated to help his father improve mentally and physically. Henry was an active 93 year old until he had a stroke in August. After hospitalization and a nursing home stay for rehabilitation, Henry returned home at the beginning of December. In spite of having physical and occupational therapy at home, Henry’s health continued to decline. Most of his days were spent lying in bed alone with only occasional human contact from his son trying to sleep for a few hours before returning to work.
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The number of individuals living to 100 is increasing. What might you to do remain healthy and active into advanced age?
How many of you at one point or another in your youth found a way into your parent’s liquor cabinet or bribed someone just a little older to purchase alcohol for you and then drank until you were overly intoxicated? How many of you know people who occasionally partake a little too much? Their personalities change with alcohol intoxication. Their speech rambles, they appear mentally or physically disoriented, they become agitated or confused, angry or mean, they imagine things that aren’t real or recall events that haven’t occurred.
In 2017, for the first time in recorded history, the number of individuals on this planet who are 65 years or older is predicted to surpass the number of individuals less than 5 years old.” 1 Like it or not, if you are reading this article you are part of an aging generation. Aging and the associated wrinkles, gray hair and physical decline is viewed by society as negative. None of us want or hope to be “that old person”, yet many of us will be that person, one day.
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Interview with Dr. Ann Gruber- Baldini, Associate Professor Gerontology, University of Maryland School of Medicine
(podcast 10:00 playing time)
Click below to listen: