Warning: trim() expects parameter 1 to be string, array given in /home/nvsenior/public_html/wp-content/plugins/custom-post-order-category/wp-customcategorypostorder.php on line 492
anxiety | Nevada Senior Guide

Goodbye, Signs of Aging

June 19, 2016 by · Comments Off on Goodbye, Signs of Aging
Filed under: General 

Everyone is affected with signs of aging at some point in their life, be it visible wrinkles, blemishes, pigmentation changes, expression lines, discolorations, poor texture, or other environment-related conditions of the skin. As we age, the production of skin reviving and plumping collagen gradually slows, revealing fine lines and wrinkles.

Anti-aging creams promise to reduce these signs of aging. Yet, despite the ever-rising demand and great popularity, there has been skepticism and anxiety related to anti-wrinkle creams. Many believe that anti-aging creams are but fads, and do not work at all. Debates still continue whether anti-aging creams are cosmetics or drugs. Many argue that most of the anti-aging creams only enhance the outward appearance of the skin and only temporarily at that; and therefore should be placed on equal footings with other cosmetics.

So the promises of younger, fresher looking skin are nothing but lies? No. Fortunately for wrinkle-cream customers, that’s not always so. Granted, in most scenarios, wrinkle creams only offer what can already be achieved through the use of moisturizers and sunscreens. But with a little knowledge of active ingredients used nowadays in certain anti-aging creams, the promises may as well be fulfilled.

Anti-aging creams come under the category of “cosmeceuticals”, mixture of cosmetics and pharmaceuticals; which means they are cosmetic products containing certain biologically active ingredients claiming to give medical or drug-like effect. With ample scientific research and knowledge collected thus, researchers HAVE found out such ingredients which are almost just as effective and relatively inexpensive compared to medical cosmetic procedures.

Active Anti-aging Ingredients:

Most people usually stick to buying cosmetic products of their favorite brands. But to actually gain satisfactory results from anti-aging creams, you’ll have to go an extra mile and start with researching products containing active ingredients which really work on aging skin.

Retinoid:

The active ingredient in Retin-A is tretinoin. The chemical is the only one till date to achieve FDA approval ratings for anti-aging as well as anti-sun damage properties. Retinoid prevents the loss of collagen from skin due to excessive exposure and consequent photo-damage.

In anti-aging creams, retinoid-derivatives in the form of retinol and retinyl palmitate (combination of pure retinol and cleansing agent palmitic acid) are used. However, these must be present at a sufficiently high concentration of 0.04% to 0.07% to be effective. Customers should also take care to note the expiry date of the product, since products containing retinoid tend to expire after a month or so post opening.

Side effects may include mild irritation and redness. Customers with sensitive skin should use a much lower concentration of retinol (approx. 0.025%). It is also advisable to avoid the use of products containing retinoid during pregnancy or breast feeding period, since it is a Vitamin A derivative which is associated with birth defects.

Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs):

Various alpha and beta hydroxy acids are already popular ingredients in various cosmetic products like cleansers, moisturizers, toners, etc. Two most popular AHAs are lactic acid and glycolic acid, known for their ability to efficiently penetrate skin.

AHAs have superb exfoliation properties helping in removal of dead skin cells and growth of new ones. Effectiveness of anti-wrinkle creams containing AHAs depends upon concentration (5% to 8% are sufficient) and frequency of application.

AHAs can increase sun-sensitivity by almost 50%, therefore an effective sunscreen providing UVA and UVB protection is an FDA requisite in final product formulation. Irritation, redness and possible scarring can also occur as side effects. Some people tend to be allergic to certain hydroxy acids. Therefore it’s best to consult a physician before trying a product with an AHA mentioned in ingredients.

Peptides:

Peptides are short-chained proteins which occur naturally in the skin, mainly acting as messengers (in the form of signal peptides) or hormones. They are well known for their natural skin-healing benefits. Peptides such as oligopeptides work as collagen boosters, while Palmitoyl Tripeptide-5 and Tripeptide-1 stimulate the skin for synthesizing collagen of types I and III, and simultaneously decreasing enzyme production to protect collagen and elastin integrity. Pentapeptide-18 and Acetyl hexapeptide-8 (Argireline) are peptides that are known to tighten the skin, thereby reducing the appearance of wrinkles.

There are minimal side-effects related to use of peptides for anti-aging treatment. Not only they help against wrinkles, they also increase skin’s moisture retaining ability, elasticity, and resilience.

Anti-oxidants:

Anti-oxidants are substances that are known to protect the body from damage caused by free radicals-unstable molecules that damage cell membranes, proteins, lipids, and DNA. Free radicals are also one of the major causes of premature aging. Anti-oxidants are already popular for their extraordinary health benefits, and their use in anti-aging products is relatively new yet promising.

Green tea, rosemary, grapes, and tomatoes contain the most effective anti-oxidants and products containing extracts of same can give visible satisfactory results with regular application. A 10% concentration of green tea extract in a given product is especially effective for fighting aging.

It should be noted that although anti-oxidants can be used in diet and applied topically, the effectiveness of an anti-oxidant diet for anti-aging is somewhat debatable. Also, most anti-oxidants will only help in prevention of wrinkles, and may not work to remove those which already exist.

Sunscreens:

Excess exposure to sun leaves visible skin prone to aging effects of UVA and UVB rays. Increased levels of exposure can cause wrinkling, discoloration, formation of freckles and dark spots, damaging of elastin and collagen, skin cancer, as well as DNA mutations. Yes, those 2 minutes you saved by opting out sunscreen application will take its heavy toll.

Sunscreens and sunblocks are applied topically in various forms to prevent such skin related hazards. Following the age old adage of “prevention is better than cure”, sunscreen application substantially reduces chances of photo aging.

Nowadays, sunscreens with active anti-aging ingredients are on rise. These will not only prevent photo aging, but will also treat existing signs of aging. The most effective ones contain tretinoin, the efficacy of which has been already discussed in the Retinoid section as a miracle chemical with proven anti-aging as well as anti-sun damage properties. Other anti-aging sunscreens contain anti-oxidants in the form of minerals.

Vitamin C:

Vitamin C is one of the most widely used skin-care ingredient, given its astounding skin healing properties. It skin rejuvenation and anti-wrinkle properties have been scientifically proved: It is essential for synthesis of collagen in skin, thus curing wrinkles and fine lines; and it is a well-known anti-oxidant, capable of preventing skin-damage due to free radicals.

Vitamin C on its own is rather tricky, since it oxidizes instantly and may cause more harm than good when used topically. To overcome this barrier, anti-aging creams use the vitamin’s more stable and effective derivatives like magnesium ascorbyl phosphate, ascorbyl palmitate, etc.

Vitamin C taken in dietary form is good for health, but provides insubstantial anti-aging benefits for skin, since higher concentrations for anti-wrinkle properties are required than those available to skin through vitamin rich diet.

Anti-aging creams do work, wonderfully. The effects of a given anti-aging product will depend upon active ingredients in its formulation, their respective concentrations, and frequency and regularity of application. Also keep in mind that many of the active ingredients listed above work best in ‘synergy’, i.e. combined form, than by themselves. For instance, AHAs sun-sensitivity factor can be negated by adding sunscreen in its formulation, and a sunscreen with retinoid will work wonders on wrinkle-ridden skin.

For more information about anti wrinkle creams please visit: [http://www.antiwrinklecreamsblog.com/]

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Binh_Hanh_Thai_Nguyen/1413972

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/7273758

The Development of Old Age and Related Issues

April 18, 2016 by · Comments Off on The Development of Old Age and Related Issues
Filed under: General 

In traditional Chinese and other Asian cultures the aged were highly respected and cared for. The Igabo tribesmen of Eastern Nigeria value dependency in their aged and involve them in care of children and the administration of tribal affairs (Shelton, A. in Kalish R. Uni Michigan 1969).

In Eskimo culture the grandmother was pushed out into the ice-flow to die as soon as she became useless.

Western societies today usually resemble to some degree the Eskimo culture, only the “ice-flows” have names such a “Sunset Vista” and the like. Younger generations no longer assign status to the aged and their abandonment is always in danger of becoming the social norm.

There has been a tendency to remove the aged from their homes and put them  in custodial care. To some degree the government provides domiciliary care services to prevent or delay this, but the motivation probably has more to do with expense than humanity.

In Canada and some parts of the USA old people are being utilised as foster-grandparents in child care agencies.

SOME BASIC DEFINITIONS

What is Aging?

Aging: Aging is a natural phenomenon that refers to changes occurring throughout the life span and result in differences in structure and function between the youthful and elder generation.

Gerontology: Gerontology is the study of aging and includes science, psychology and sociology.

Geriatrics: A relatively new field of medicine specialising in the health problems of advanced age.

Social aging: Refers to the social habits and roles of individuals with respect to their culture and society. As social aging increases individual usually experience a decrease in meaningful social interactions.

Biological aging: Refers to the physical changes in the body systems during the later decades of life. It may begin long before the individual  reaches chronological age 65.

Cognitive aging: Refers to decreasing ability to assimilate new information and learn new behaviours and skills.

GENERAL PROBLEMS OF AGING

Eric Erikson (Youth and the life cycle. Children. 7:43-49 Mch/April 1960) developed an “ages and stages” theory of human development that involved 8 stages after birth each of which involved a basic dichotomy representing best case and worst case outcomes. Below are the dichotomies and their developmental relevance:

Prenatal stage – conception to birth.

  1. Infancy. Birth to 2 years – basic trust vs. basic distrust. Hope.
  2. Early childhood, 3 to 4 years – autonomy vs. self doubt/shame. Will.
  3. Play age, 5 to 8 years – initiative vs. guilt. Purpose.
  4. School age, 9to 12 – industry vs. inferiority. Competence.
  5. Adolescence, 13 to 19 – identity vs. identity confusion. Fidelity.
  6. Young adulthood – intimacy vs. isolation. Love.
  7. Adulthood, generativity vs. self absorption. Care.
  8. Mature age- Ego Integrity vs. Despair. Wisdom.

This stage of older adulthood, i.e. stage 8, begins about the time of retirement and continues throughout one’s life. Achieving ego integrity  is a sign of maturity while failing to reach this stage is an indication of poor development in prior stages through the life course.

Ego integrity: This means coming to accept one’s whole life and reflecting on it in a positive manner. According to Erikson, achieving integrity means fully accepting one’ self and coming to terms with death. Accepting responsibility for one’s life and being able to review the past with satisfaction is essential. The inability to do this leads to despair and the individual will begin to fear death. If a favourable balance is achieved during this stage, then wisdom is developed.

Psychological and personality aspects:

Aging has psychological implications. Next to dying our recognition that we are aging may be one of the most profound shocks we ever receive. Once we pass the invisible line of 65 our years are bench marked for the remainder of the game of life. We are no longer “mature age” we are instead classified as “old”, or “senior citizens”. How we cope with the changes we face and stresses of altered status depends on our basic personality. Here are 3 basic personality types that have been identified. It may be a oversimplification but it makes the point about personality effectively:

a. The autonomous – people who seem to have the resources for self-renewal. They may be dedicated to a goal or idea and committed to continuing productivity. This appears to protect them somewhat even against physiological aging.

b.The adjusted – people who are rigid and lacking in adaptability but are supported by their power, prestige or well structured routine. But if their situation changes drastically they become psychiatric casualties.

c.The anomic. These are people who do not have clear inner values or a protective life vision. Such people have been described as prematurely resigned and they may deteriorate rapidly.

Summary of stresses of old age.

a. Retirement and reduced income. Most people rely on work for self worth, identity and social interaction. Forced retirement can be demoralising.

b. Fear of invalidism and death. The increased probability of falling prey to illness from which there is no recovery is a continual source of anxiety. When one has a heart attack or stroke the stress becomes much worse.

Some persons face death with equanimity, often psychologically supported by a religion or philosophy. Others may welcome death as an end to suffering or insoluble problems and with little concern for life or human existence. Still others face impending death with suffering of great stress against which they have no ego defenses.

c. Isolation and loneliness. Older people face inevitable loss of loved ones, friends and contemporaries. The loss of a spouse whom one has depended on for companionship and moral support is particularly distressing. Children grow up, marry and become preoccupied or move away. Failing memory, visual and aural impairment may all work to make social interaction difficult. And if this then leads to a souring of outlook and rigidity of attitude then social interaction becomes further lessened and the individual may not even utilise the avenues for social activity that are still available.

d. Reduction in sexual function and physical attractiveness. Kinsey et al, in their Sexual behaviour in the human male, (Phil., Saunders, 1948) found that there is a gradual decrease in sexual activity with advancing age and that reasonably gratifying patterns of sexual activity can continue into extreme old age. The aging person also has to adapt to loss of sexual attractiveness in a society which puts extreme emphasis on sexual attractiveness. The adjustment in self image and self concept that are required can be very hard to make.

e. Forces tending to self devaluation. Often the experience of the older generation has little perceived relevance to the problems of the young and the older person becomes deprived of participation in decision making both in occupational and family settings. Many parents are seen as unwanted burdens and their children may secretly wish they would die so they can be free of the burden and experience some financial relief or benefit. Senior citizens may be pushed into the role of being an old person with all this implies in terms of self devaluation.

4 Major Categories of Problems or Needs:

Health.

Housing.

Income maintenance.

Interpersonal relations.

BIOLOGICAL CHANGES

Physiological Changes: Catabolism (the breakdown of protoplasm) overtakes anabolism (the build-up of protoplasm). All body systems are affected and repair systems become slowed. The aging process occurs at different rates in different individuals.

Physical appearance and other changes:

Loss of subcutaneous fat and less elastic skin gives rise to wrinkled appearance, sagging and loss of smoothness of body contours. Joints stiffen and become painful and range of joint movement becomes restricted, general mobility lessened.

Respiratory changes:

Increase of fibrous tissue in chest walls and lungs leads restricts respiratory movement and less oxygen is consumed. Older people more likelyto have lower respiratory infections whereas young people have upper respiratory infections.

Nutritive changes:

Tooth decay and loss of teeth can detract from ease and enjoyment in eating. Atrophy of the taste buds means food is inclined to be tasteless and this should be taken into account by carers. Digestive changes occur from lack of exercise (stimulating intestines) and decrease in digestive juice production. Constipation and indigestion are likely to follow as a result. Financial problems can lead to the elderly eating an excess of cheap carbohydrates rather than the more expensive protein and vegetable foods and this exacerbates the problem, leading to reduced vitamin intake and such problems as anemia and increased susceptibility to infection.

Adaptation to stress:

All of us face stress at all ages. Adaptation to stress requires the consumption of energy. The 3 main phases of stress are:

1. Initial alarm reaction. 2. Resistance. 3. Exhaustion

and if stress continues tissue damage or aging occurs. Older persons have had a lifetime of dealing with stresses. Energy reserves are depleted and the older person succumbs to stress earlier than the younger person. Stress is cumulative over a lifetime. Research results, including experiments with animals suggests that each stress leaves us more vulnerable to the next and that although we might think we’ve “bounced back” 100% in fact each stress leaves it scar. Further, stress is psycho-biological meaning the kind of stress is irrelevant. A physical stress may leave one more vulnerable to psychological stress and vice versa. Rest does not completely restore one after a stressor. Care workers need to be mindful of this and cognizant of the kinds of things that can produce stress for aged persons.

COGNITIVE CHANGE Habitual Behaviour:

Sigmund Freud noted that after the age of 50, treatment of neuroses via psychoanalysis was difficult because the opinions and reactions of older people were relatively fixed and hard to shift.

Over-learned behaviour: This is behaviour that has been learned so well and repeated so often that it has become automatic, like for example typing or running down stairs. Over-learned behaviour is hard to change. If one has lived a long time one is likely to have fixed opinions and ritualised behaviour patterns or habits.

Compulsive behaviour: Habits and attitudes that have been learned in the course of finding ways to overcome frustration and difficulty are very hard to break. Tension reducing habits such as nail biting, incessant humming, smoking or drinking alcohol are especially hard to change at any age and particularly hard for persons who have been practising them over a life time.

The psychology of over-learned and compulsive behaviours has severe implications for older persons who find they have to live in what for them is a new and alien environment with new rules and power relations.

Information acquisition:

Older people have a continual background of neural noise making it more difficult for them to sort out and interpret complex sensory input. In talking to an older person one should turn off the TV, eliminate as many noises and distractions as possible, talk slowly and relate to one message or idea at a time.

Memories from the distant past are stronger than more recent memories. New memories are the first to fade and last to return.

Time patterns also can get mixed – old and new may get mixed.

Intelligence.

Intelligence reaches a peak and can stay high with little deterioration if there is no neurological damage. People who have unusually high intelligence to begin with seem to suffer the least decline. Education and stimulation also seem to play a role in maintaining intelligence.

Intellectual impairment. Two diseases of old age causing cognitive decline are Alzheimer’s syndrome and Pick’s syndrome. In Pick’s syndrome there is inability to concentrate and learn and also affective responses are impaired.

Degenerative Diseases: Slow progressive physical degeneration of cells in the nervous system. Genetics appear to be an important factor. Usually start after age 40 (but can occur as early as 20s).

ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE Degeneration of all areas of cortex but particularly frontal and temporal lobes. The affected cells actually die. Early symptoms resemble neurotic disorders: Anxiety, depression, restlessness sleep difficulties.

Progressive deterioration of all intellectual faculties (memory deficiency being the most well known and obvious). Total mass of the brain decreases, ventricles become larger. No established treatment.

PICK’S DISEASE Rare degenerative disease. Similar to Alzheimer’s in terms of onset, symptomatology and possible genetic aetiology. However it affects circumscribed areas of the brain, particularly the frontal areas which leads to a loss of normal affect.

PARKINSON’S DISEASE Neuropathology: Loss of neurons in the basal ganglia.

Symptoms: Movement abnormalities: rhythmical alternating tremor of extremities, eyelids and tongue along with rigidity of the muscles and slowness of movement (akinesia).

It was once thought that Parkinson’s disease was not associated with intellectual deterioration, but it is now known that there is an association between global intellectual impairment and Parkinson’s where it occurs late in life.

The cells lost in Parkinson’s are associated with the neuro-chemical Dopamine and the motor symptoms of Parkinson’s are associated the dopamine deficiency. Treatment involves administration of dopamine precursor L-dopa which can alleviate symptoms including intellectual impairment. Research suggests it may possibly bring to the fore emotional effects in patients who have had psychiatric illness at some prior stage in their lives.

AFFECTIVE DOMAIN In old age our self concept gets its final revision. We make a final assessment of the value of our lives and our balance of success and failures.

How well a person adapts to old age may be predicated by how well the person adapted to earlier significant changes. If the person suffered an emotional crisis each time a significant change was needed then adaptation to the exigencies of old age may also be difficult. Factors such as economic security, geographic location and physical health are important to the adaptive process.

Need Fulfilment: For all of us, according to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs theory, we are not free to pursue the higher needs of self actualisation unless the basic needs are secured. When one considers that many, perhaps most, old people are living in poverty and continually concerned with basic survival needs, they are not likely to be happily satisfying needs related to prestige, achievement and beauty.

Maslow’s Hierarchy

Physiological

Safety

Belonging, love, identification

Esteem: Achievement, prestige, success, self respect

Self actualisation: Expressing one’s interests and talents to the full.

Note: Old people who have secured their basic needs may be motivated to work on tasks of the highest levels in the hierarchy – activities concerned with aesthetics, creativity and altruistic matters, as compensation for loss of sexual attractiveness and athleticism. Aged care workers fixated on getting old people to focus on social activities may only succeed in frustrating and irritating them if their basic survival concerns are not secured to their satisfaction.

DISENGAGEMENT

Social aging according to Cumming, E. and Henry, W. (Growing old: the aging process of disengagement, NY, Basic 1961) follows a well defined pattern:

  1. Change in role. Change in occupation and productivity. Possibly change in attitude to work.
  2. Loss of role, e.g. retirement or death of a husband.
  3. Reduced social interaction. With loss of role social interactions are diminished, eccentric adjustment can further reduce social interaction, damage to self concept, depression.
  4. Awareness of scarcity of remaining time. This produces further curtailment of activity in interest of saving time.

Havighurst, R. et al (in B. Neugarten (ed.) Middle age and aging, U. of Chicago, 1968) and others have suggested that disengagement is not an inevitable process. They believe the needs of the old are essentially the same as in middle age and the activities of middle age should be extended as long as possible. Havighurst points out the decrease in social interaction of the aged is often largely the result of society withdrawing from the individual as much as the reverse. To combat this he believes the individual must vigorously resist the limitations of his social world.

DEATH The fear of the dead amongst tribal societies is well established. Persons who had ministered to the dead were taboo and required observe various rituals including seclusion for varying periods of time. In some societies from South America to Australia it is taboo for certain persons to utter the name of the dead. Widows and widowers are expected to observe rituals in respect for the dead.

Widows in the Highlands of New Guinea around Goroka chop of one of their own fingers. The dead continue their existence as spirits and upsetting them can bring dire consequences.

Wahl, C in “The fear of death”, 1959 noted that the fear of death occurs as early as the 3rd year of life. When a child loses a pet or grandparent fears reside in the unspoken questions: Did I cause it? Will happen to you (parent) soon? Will this happen to me? The child in such situations needs to re-assure that the departure is not a censure, and that the parent is not likely to depart soon. Love, grief, guilt, anger are a mix of conflicting emotions that are experienced.

CONTEMPORARY ATTITUDES TO DEATH

Our culture places high value on youth, beauty, high status occupations, social class and anticipated future activities and achievement. Aging and dying are denied and avoided in this system. The death of each person reminds us of our own mortality.

The death of the elderly is less disturbing to members of Western society because the aged are not especially valued. Surveys have established that nurses for example attach more importance to saving a young life than an old life. In Western society there is a pattern of avoiding dealing with the aged and dying aged patient.

Stages of dying. Elisabeth Kubler Ross has specialised in working with dying patients and in her “On death and dying”, NY, Macmillan, 1969, summarised 5 stages in dying.

  1. Denial and isolation. “No, not me”.
  2. Anger. “I’ve lived a good life so why me?”
  3. Bargaining. Secret deals are struck with God. “If I can live until…I promise to…”
  4. Depression. (In general the greatest psychological problem of the aged is depression). Depression results from real and threatened loss.
  5. Acceptance of the inevitable.

Kubler Ross’s typology as set out above should, I believe be taken with a grain of salt and not slavishly accepted. Celebrated US Journalist David Rieff who was in June ’08 a guest of the Sydney writer’s festival in relation to his book, “Swimming in a sea of death: a son’s memoir” (Melbourne University Press) expressly denied the validity of the Kubler Ross typology in his Late Night Live interview (Australian ABC radio) with Philip Adams June 9th ’08. He said something to the effect that his mother had regarded her impending death as murder. My own experience with dying persons suggests that the human ego is extraordinarily resilient. I recall visiting a dying colleague in hospital just days before his death. He said, “I’m dying, I don’t like it but there’s nothing I can do about it”, and then went on to chortle about how senior academics at an Adelaide university had told him they were submitting his name for a the Order of Australia (the new “Knighthood” replacement in Australia). Falling in and out of lucid thought with an oxygen tube in his nostrils he was nevertheless still highly interested in the “vain glories of the world”. This observation to me seemed consistent with Rieff’s negative assessment of Kubler Ross’s theories.

THE AGED IN RELATION TO YOUNGER PEOPLE

The aged share with the young the same needs: However, the aged often have fewer or weaker resources to meet those needs. Their need for social interaction may be ignored by family and care workers.

Family should make time to visit their aged members and invite them to their homes. The aged like to visit children and relate to them through games and stories.

Meaningful relationships can be developed via foster-grandparent programs. Some aged are not aware of their income and health entitlements. Family and friends should take the time to explain these. Some aged are too proud to access their entitlements and this problem should be addressed in a kindly way where it occurs.

It is best that the aged be allowed as much choice as possible in matters related to living arrangements, social life and lifestyle.

Communities serving the aged need to provide for the aged via such things as lower curbing, and ramps.

Carers need to examine their own attitude to aging and dying. Denial in the carer is detected by the aged person and it can inhibit the aged person from expressing negative feelings – fear, anger. If the person can express these feelings to someone then that person is less likely to die with a sense of isolation and bitterness.

A METAPHYSICAL PERSPECTIVE

The following notes are my interpretation of a Dr. Depak Chopra lecture entitled, “The New Physics of Healing” which he presented to the 13th Scientific Conference of the American Holistic Medical Association. Dr. Depak Chopra is an endocrinologist and a former Chief of Staff of New England Hospital, Massachusetts. I am deliberately omitting the detail of his explanations of the more abstract, ephemeral and controversial ideas.

Original material from 735 Walnut Street, Boulder, Colorado 83002,

Phone. +303 449 6229.

In the lecture Dr. Chopra presents a model of the universe and of all organisms as structures of interacting centres of electromagnetic energy linked to each other in such a way that anything affecting one part of a system or structure has ramifications throughout the entire structure. This model becomes an analogue not only for what happens within the structure or organism itself, but between the organism and both its physical and social environments. In other words there is a correlation between psychological conditions, health and the aging process. Dr. Chopra in his lecture reconciles ancient Vedic (Hindu) philosophy with modern psychology and quantum physics.

Premature Precognitive Commitment: Dr. Chopra invokes experiments that have shown that flies kept for a long time in a jar do not quickly leave the jar when the top is taken off. Instead they accept the jar as the limit of their universe. He also points out that in India baby elephants are often kept tethered to a small twig or sapling. In adulthood when the elephant is capable of pulling over a medium sized tree it can still be successfully tethered to a twig! As another example he points to experiments in which fish are bred on

2 sides of a fish tank containing a divider between the 2 sides. When the divider is removed the fish are slow to learn that they can now swim throughout the whole tank but rather stay in the section that they accept as their universe. Other experiments have demonstrated that kittens brought up in an environment of vertical stripes and structures, when released in adulthood keep bumping into anything aligned horizontally as if they were unable to see anything that is horizontal. Conversely kittens brought up in an environment of horizontal stripes when released bump into vertical structures, apparently unable to see them.

The whole point of the above experiments is that they demonstrate Premature Precognitive Commitment. The lesson to be learned is that our sensory apparatus develops as a result of initial experience and how we’ve been taught to interpret it.

What is the real look of the world? It doesn’t exist. The way the world looks to us is determined by the sensory receptors we have and our interpretation of that look is determined by our premature precognitive commitments. Dr Chopra makes the point that less than a billionth of the available stimuli make it into our nervous systems. Most of it is screened, and what gets through to us is whatever we are expecting to find on the basis of our precognitive commitments.

Dr. Chopra also discusses the diseases that are actually caused by mainstream medical interventions, but this material gets too far away from my central intention. Dr. Chopra discusses in lay terms the physics of matter, energy and time by way of establishing the wider context of our existence. He makes the point that our bodies including the bodies of plants are mirrors of cosmic rhythms and exhibit changes correlating even with the tides.

Dr. Chopra cites the experiments of Dr. Herbert Spencer of the US National Institute of Health. He injected mice with Poly-IC, an immuno-stimulant while making the mice repeatedly smell camphor. After the effect of the Poly-IC had worn off he again exposed the mice to the camphor smell. The smell of camphor had the effect of causing the mice’s immune system to automatically strengthen as if they had been injected with the stimulant. He then took another batch of mice and injected them with cyclophosphamide which tends to destroy the immune system while exposing them to the smell of camphor. Later after being returned to normal just the smell of camphor was enough to cause destruction of their immune system. Dr. Chopra points out that whether or not camphor enhanced or destroyed the mice’s immune system was entirely determined by an interpretation of the meaning of the smell of camphor. The interpretation is not just in the brain but in each cell of the organism. We are bound to our imagination and our early experiences.

Chopra cites a study by the Massachusetts Dept of Health Education and Welfare into risk factors for heart disease – family history, cholesterol etc. The 2 most important risk factors were found to be psychological measures – Self  Happiness Rating and Job Satisfaction. They found most people died of heart disease on a Monday!

Chopra says that for every feeling there is a molecule. If you are experiencing tranquillity your body will be producing natural valium. Chemical changes in the brain are reflected by changes in other cells including blood cells. The brain produces neuropeptides and brain structures are chemically tuned to these neuropeptide receptors. Neuropeptides (neurotransmitters) are the chemical concommitants of thought. Chopra points out the white blood cells (a part of the immune system) have neuropeptide receptors and are “eavesdropping” on our thinking. Conversely the immune system produces its own neuropeptides which can influence the nervous system. He goes on to say that cells in all parts of the body including heart and kidneys for example also produce neuropeptides and neuropeptide sensitivity. Chopra assures us that most neurologists would agree that the nervous system and the immune system are parallel systems.

Other studies in physiology: The blood interlukin-2 levels of medical students decreased as exam time neared and their interlukin receptor capacities also lowered. Chopra says if we are having fun to the point of exhilaration our natural interlukin-2 levels become higher. Interlukin-2 is a powerful and very expensive anti-cancer drug. The body is a printout of consciousness. If we could change the way we look at our bodies at a genuine, profound level then our bodies would actually change.

On the subject of “time” Chopra cites Sir Thomas Gall and Steven Hawkins, stating that our description of the universe as having a past, present, and future are constructed entirely out of our interpretation of change. But in reality linear time doesn’t exist.

Chopra explains the work of Alexander Leaf a former Harvard Professor of Preventative Medicine who toured the world investigating societies where people  lived beyond 100 years (these included parts of Afghanistan, Soviet Georgia, Southern Andes). He looked at possible factors including climate, genetics, and diet. Leaf concluded the most important factor was the collective perception of aging in these societies.

Amongst the Tama Humara of the Southern Andes there was a collective belief that the older you got the more physically able you got. They had a tradition of running and the older one became then generally the better at running one got. The best runner was aged 60. Lung capacity and other measures actually improved with age. People were healthy until well into their 100s and died in their sleep. Chopra remarks that things have changed since the introduction of Budweiser (beer) and TV.

[DISCUSSION: How might TV be a factor in changing the former ideal state of things?]

Chopra refers to Dr. Ellen Langor a former Harvard Psychology professor’s work. Langor advertised for 100 volunteers aged over 70 years. She took them to a Monastery outside Boston to play “Let’s Pretend”. They were divided into 2 groups each of which resided in a different part of the building. One group, the control group spent several days talking about the 1950s. The other group, the experimental group had to live as if in the year 1959 and talk about it in the present tense. What appeared on their TV screens were the old newscasts and movies. They read old newspapers and magazines of the period. After 3 days everyone was photographed and the photographs judged by independent judges who knew nothing of the nature of the experiment. The experimental group seemed to have gotten younger in appearance. Langor then arranged for them to be tested for 100 physiological parameters of aging which included of course blood pressure, near point vision and DHEA levels. After 10 days of living as if in 1959 all parameters had reversed by the equivalent of at least 20 years.

Chopra concludes from Langor’s experiment: “We are the metabolic end product of our sensory experiences. How we interpret them depends on the collective mindset which influences individual biological entropy and aging.”

Can one escape the current collective mindset and reap the benefits in longevity and health? Langor says, society won’t let you escape. There are too many reminders of how most people think linear time is and how it expresses itself in entropy and aging – men are naughty at 40 and on social welfare at 55, women reach menopause at 40 etc. We get to see so many other people aging and dying that it sets the pattern that we follow.

Chopra concludes we are the metabolic product of our sensory experience and our interpretation gets structured in our biology itself. Real change comes from change in the collective consciousness – otherwise it cannot occur within the individual.

Readings

Chopra, D. The New Physics of Healing. 735 Walnut Street, Boulder, Colorado 83002,

Phone. +303 449 6229.

Coleman, J. C. Abnormal psychology and modern life. Scott Foresman & Co.

Lugo, J. and Hershey, L. Human development a multidisciplinary approach to the psychology of individual growth, NY, Macmillan.

Dennis. Psychology of human behaviour for nurses. Lond. W. B.Saunders.

[http://www.psychologynatural.com/DepressionBroch.html]

Dr. Victor Barnes is an Adelaide psychologist and hypnotherapist. He has also had three decades of experience in adult education including serving as Dean of a Sri Lankan college (ICBT) teaching several Australian degrees. His overseas experience includes studies and consulting experience in USA, PNG, Poland and Sri Lanka.

Staying Safe on the Road: Senior Driving Guide

November 25, 2013 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Articles 

Learn the challenges that may keep older adults off the road and find tips for staying safe behind the wheel

According to a recent study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, drivers in their mid- to late-80s have lower overall crash rates than drivers in their early 20s and roughly half as many crashes as teenagers—making them among the safest drivers on the road.

However, fatal crash rates skyrocket for drivers ages 85 and older. In “The Guide to Driving Safety for Older Drivers” from MySilverAge.com, Jake Nelson, AAA director of traffic safety advocacy and research in Washington, D.C., says it’s important to understand what health factors can compromise safe driving. If senior drivers have ongoing limitations that could put them or their passengers at risk, they may want to reconsider their capacity to continue driving.

Older drivers should evaluate how the following factors affect their driving ability:

  • Vision. How well a driver can see accounts for about 90 percent of his or her ability to drive safely. Weak visual aptitude can be measured by an inability to read signs, street markings, or to see other cars and pedestrians in low-light conditions.
  • Mobility. Loss of strength, coordination and flexibility can make it challenging to control a vehicle. Mobility difficulties may also be signaled by pain and discomfort performing daily activities as well as arthritis in the neck and shoulders.
  • Behavior. Trouble remembering familiar routes, anxiety or confusion while driving, or problems distinguishing the gas from the brake pedal are causes for immediate concern.

For a complete list of driving safety tips, including information on driver improvement courses, new driving technologies and alternate modes of transportation, download the driving guide for seniors.

About MySilverAge
MySilverAge is a website and online resource center, brought to you by be.group, that is designed to help seniors enjoy “what’s next.” MySilverAge brings together thought leaders on the subject of successful aging, leading intelligence on healthy aging and senior living, and expert tips and advice for creating the home, community and relationships in which seniors can thrive.

About be.group
As one of California’s largest nonprofit providers of senior living communities, be.group is committed to creating communities and services that make the lives of older adults more fulfilling. be.group’s dedicated, well-trained staff is devoted to helping its residents and clients discover new ways to embrace life’s possibilities and new options for exploring their potential. Follow @begroupliving on Twitter.

Contact:
Jackie Gibson
Content Director
Imagination.
312-382-7862
jgibson@imaginepub.com

Animal-Senior Citizen Companionship Leads to Improved Overall Health

November 20, 2013 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Articles 

 The mental and physical benefits of animal companionship have been praised across the world, from seeing-eye dogs to therapy dogs to household pets. According to the US Pet Ownership and Demographics Sourcebook, there are approximately 70 million pet dogs and 74 million pet cats in the United States. Of this number, about 63 percent of pets are considered to be members of the family. Now, pet adoption companies are utilizing the health improvements to better the quality of life for senior citizens.

“The pairing of seniors with calm, manageable adult dogs and cats has yielded amazing vitality and unparalleled effects, the feeling of loneliness dissolves and a reason to be active arises,” affirms Will Post, CEO of Hound & Gatos Pet Food, whose mission is to provide the public with high-quality pet food options for dogs and cats. “The simple presence of animal companionship can provide amazing health benefits that truly lift a senior’s mental and physical state because they have someone to depend on and someone who depends on them.”

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports that pets can reduce stress, lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels, in addition to increasing social interaction and physical activity. Add unconditional love, purpose, and that special something to care for and nurture, and you have an elixir for senior citizens.

According to Pet Partners, seniors with pets experience fewer minor health issues when visiting their doctor, and overall better health and mental well-being.  Pets are also praised for reducing loneliness and depression, two major factors that can lead to an unhealthy body and mind. Since dogs live in the present, their focus on ‘today’ tends to rub off on their owners, resulting in managing anxiety levels.

“These positive results of animal companionship for seniors is one more reason to encourage the ownership and nurturing of pets for the seniors of today. We are only beginning to document these facts determining the health benefits of pet ownership for the elderly, though animal lovers have always suspected it. Their contribution to a better quality of life being recognized can only lead to happier and healthier seniors, something we can all be excited about,” says Post.  “The importance of love proves to be a major force in life no matter what age one might be.”

Research continues to show that pets help people of all ages enjoy a much fuller and rewarding life, and the mission of Hound & Gatos Pet Food Corporation is to try to create cat and dog formulas that can ultimately improve our beloved pet’s vitality and longevity. Dubbed as the original Paleolithic pet food company, their recipes are 100 percent protein and zero percent plant protein, with the number-one ingredient being meat. To learn more about Hound & Gatos, including where to buy products, visit their site at: www.houndgatos.com.

About Hound & Gatos Pet Foods Corporation

Hound & Gatos Pet Foods Corporation is based in New York. Their mission is to provide the public with high-quality pet food options for dogs and cats. Their line of pet foods focus on quality ingredients that provide maximum nutrition, and avoid all bi-products and other ingredients that would generally be unnatural to a pet’s diet. For more information on Hound & Gatos visit the site at www.houndgatos.com.

 

# # #

Source: American Veterinary Medical Assocation. US Pet Ownership & Demographics Sourcebook.https://www.avma.org/KB/Resources/Statistics/Pages/Market-research-statistics-US-Pet-Ownership-Demographics-Sourcebook.aspx

Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Health Benefits of Pets.http://www.cdc.gov/healthypets/health_benefits.htm

Pet Partners. Health Benefits of Animals for Seniors. http://www.petpartners.org/page.aspx?pid=312

A Crusade to Help Senior Citizens in Car Shopping by Irene Mori

September 12, 2013 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Articles 

Seldom is shopping for and buying a new automobile a wonderful experience. Indeed, there is a chance that it could be a horrible encounter with unpleasant consequences. Signing the papers to lease or purchase a car, if one is not ready to do so, can be an event which causes monumental anxiety and stress.

Senior citizens who want to obtain a new car can be vulnerable to the unscrupulous and at times unethical tactics of salespeople who want to make a sale and hence a commission. Insensitive salesmen and saleswomen could be concerned with their own welfare and the money they would make. High pressure and conniving tricks may be used against unsuspecting customers.

Sydney’s husband was willing to sign a lease the day they shopped for a new car although they had previously not expected to do so yet. They still had a lease on the car they were currently driving, and it would not expire for another two months. They had not discussed nor decided upon what course of action to take. They had not made any decisions about whether to keep leasing that car, to purchase it, or to acquire a new car. They were just looking, or so thought Sydney. Unfortunately, Sydney’s husband told the saleswoman that they COULD get a car that day. She said they would pay for the last two months on the present lease. She made it sound like they were getting a good deal on the lease of a new car, which they would not need for another two months.

They decided to take a car for a test drive. They admitted that the car was nice. Then the trouble began. The seemingly nice saleswoman turned to a person with a mission-to sell an automobile. She became a wolf in sheep’s clothing. She turned into a witch underneath a seemingly pleasant demeanor.

Although Sydney repeatedly stated that they needed to discuss the matter, the saleswoman would not let them leave the showroom. She brought in reinforcements such as a sales manager and others. Instead of letting them go out for lunch to discuss the matter, they brought in lunch. She wrote down their name on the board as having already purchased a car.

It was almost as if Sydney and her husband had been chained to the table, but Sydney finally broke loose. She allowed the reasonable thoughts to crowd out the demons. It was not easy to do against such odds, but she stood her ground and got up to leave. The saleswoman tried to bully her into staying with all kinds of strange and irrational statements. Sydney’s guardian angel had eventually come to her aid, and she spoke her mind. She needed to get out of there and think about it. Of course, the saleswoman knew that Sydney and her husband would not be back. There was no way that Sydney would deal with that woman again. She had finally broken loose, and she was extremely satisfied that she had not relented to the pressure.

Sydney recalled the experience of her friend Helen, who had signed a lease against her will. She tried to get out of the deal, but she was stuck. The dealership said she could get out of the deal by paying a $5,000 restocking fee. They basically did not listen. They had found another sucker.

Senior citizens and everyone should buy a car with pleasure only when they are ready. Don’t let a terrible salesperson talk you into something you are not happily ready and willing to do. A car purchase should be a pleasant experience, not an ordeal that brings pain and anguish.

Irene Mori has been involved with network marketing and home based business for a number of years. She works in the food and nutrition areas as well as with a company which offers discounts on everyday purchases and cash back for online shopping. FREE training and marketing tools are readily available with this affordable opportunity with a good profit potential. Get more information on this business by visiting: http://www.moremlmsuccess.com. You can learn about a business in the food storage area by sending an email to: sr.marcia1@gmail.com.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Irene_Mori

Debt and Senior Citizens by David Cunningham

August 28, 2013 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Articles 

dddddddddddddddd

We are in a consumer driven world. There are so many things all around us that make our lives easier and, in a way, influence us to think that we must have them. There are always things that we want which we simply cannot afford. As banks and credit card companies mushroom out of control, we are barraged with opportunities to accept so-called help from these financial institutions just so we can buy more merchandise we want but do not need.

The best part is that you do not even have go to them asking for the credit that you want. They will be at your beck and call offering credit cards, store credit cards (from those stores you wanted to purchase from anyway), merchandise cards (you’re given hundreds of dollars in credit to purchase from the company’s specific catalog), and leasing arrangements that allow you to pay over time.

The only problem with buying on credit is paying it off. Using an analogy, it is easier to step into quicksand than it is to get out. There isn’t always a branch lying around attached to a willing helper. Credit may be no problem if your current job earns enough money to repay your debts completely each month. It simply becomes part of your overall expenses. What happens, though, when your debt overextends your pay check?

Unfortunately, retired senior citizens are more susceptible to this pitfall. In prior years, they worked and earned a certain amount of money, but upon retirement are saddled with little more than Social Security – definitely a blow to the pocket book. Their income is not as flexible as it once was. There are solutions, however, from which seniors can benefit. Some are even geared specifically toward them.

As a senior citizen, you can request the help of a professional. Financial advisors are available to help tackle your problems. Asking for the aid of one such professional can save you a great deal of anxiety, credit ruin and, more importantly, stress. Your financial advisor can act as a mediator between you and creditors to develop “payoff amounts” that won’t leave you destitute – and usually at a fraction of your current payments. If you feel that you’re drowning financially, you shouldn’t wait until the water is over your head. Contact a financial advisor now for assistance.

Before meeting with an advisor, there are steps you should take to be best prepared for the discussion. Grab a notebook and pen to list all your creditors. List them in order of importance, starting with your mortgage (or rent or community fees, etc.) and ending with small payments like store credit cards. List their amounts as well. If you owe $50,000 on your home then list $50,000 and your current monthly payment. For example:

ABC Mortgage Company $50,000 (debt), $775 (monthly payment)

Listing the information this way will show your credit advisor that you are serious about getting your debt in order. It also is incredibly useful for the advisor in contacting your creditors since your financial advisor can then, at a glance, see what you owe and to whom. A sample short list follows below.

It is important that you have a clear comprehension of your financial situation. The best solution to debt is to not get into any that you cannot handle. However if you have already reached that “destination,” especially as a retired senior, then utilizing a financial advisor is certainly a great option to help rid yourself of the burden.

And now, the sample I promised:

John Smith

Total Monthly Income: $1200

DEBTS / MONTHLY PAYMENTS

ABC Mortgage $50,000 (debt), $750 (monthly payment)

Car Payment $20,000 (debt), $450 (monthly payment)

Credit Bank #1 $3,000 (debt), $25 (monthly payment)

Credit Bank #2 $1,200 (debt), $15 (monthly payment)

Store Credit Card #1 $5,000 (debt), $75 (monthly payment)

House Phone $50 (monthly payment)

Cell Phone $55 (monthly payment)

Total Debt $79,200

Total Monthly Payments $1,400

As you can see from this example, this person is losing $200 every month ($1400 monthly payments minus $1200 income). A financial advisor can usually negotiate with the credit card companies. They may even suggest that this person discontinue either their home phone or cell phone, for example, as most can probably get along with just one or the other.

For practical debt & credit assistance [http://www.debt-credit-assistance.com/credit_card_debt_solutions.shtml] information, please visit [http://www.debt-credit-assistance.com], a popular site providing great insights concerning how to address your issues and worries related to nagging debt struggles [http://www.debt-credit-assistance.com/usa_debt_management.shtml].

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=David_Cunningham

 

TimeSlips Storytelling Inspires Senior Creativity

July 13, 2013 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Articles 

By Nancy LaFever / Posted on 12 July 2013 in Seniorsforliving.com (link below)

Timeslips StorytellingA creative program that was originally designed to assist seniors with dementia,TimeSlips uses a storytelling format to spur creativity in older adults and other age groups. Using TimeSlips,trained facilitators have people create stories from prompts, usually pictures. Especially effective with dementia patients, it relieves the often anxiety-producing effort of remembering with imagination. As described, “TimeSlips opens storytelling to everyone by replacing the pressure to remember with the freedom to imagine.”

A recent post on the Leadingage.org website reports that TimeSlips Creative Storytelling has launched a new online training system…  [to continue reading, go to http://www.seniorsforliving.com/blog/2013/07/12/timeslips-storytelling-inspires-senior-creativity/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+seniorsforliving%2FwtAk+%28Seniors+For+Living%29]

WestCare Foundation Announces Expanded Veterans Programs

July 8, 2013 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Articles 

 

WestCare Foundation Announces Expanded Veterans Programs

(Las Vegas) – WestCare, a community-based nonprofit providing responsive human services and behavioral health care programs for four decades, announced today that it has expanded its Veterans’ services.

WestCare, founded in Las Vegas 40 years ago, serves approximately 5,000 veterans throughout the United States annually.  America’s returning warriors often face health challenges including substance abuse and mental health disorders, identified as this generation’s “invisible wounds of war.”   Among them are post traumatic stress, brain injury, sexual trauma, anxiety and depression.  Episodes of homelessness, unemployment, and criminal justice involvement are not uncommon among our Veterans.

“These challenges present opportunities for community organizations, led by specially trained, qualified and informed staff, to assist with issues such as social isolation, domestic violence, reintegration and transition, and other problems a Veteran, as well as Veteran family members, may be experiencing,” said veteran and Director of Veteran Services, Dan Bernal. “WestCare is committed to helping Veterans and military family members live positive, productive and healthy lives.”

WestCare’s expanded programs are aimed at addressing a broad range of issues for Veterans and their families through services that  include: treatment for substance abuse and mental health disorders with gender or youth-specific services as appropriate, HIV/AIDS-specific programs, assistance to homelessness  including transitional shelters and permanent housing projects, family counseling, community reintegration, assistance to those who are justice involved, educational and vocational programs for both youth and adults, and case management.

From the top down, starting with WestCare’s President and Vietnam Veteran, Richard Steinberg, more than 10 percent of WestCare’s leadership and staff are Veterans and members of military families. The organization has a deep understanding of military culture at every level and in every program.  “Serving those who have served” is more than a slogan at WestCare.

Since the organization’s inception, Veterans have been welcomed into WestCare programs.  Today, the expanding reach of Veteran-specific programs is aimed at extending services to the men and women who deserve respect for their service, understanding of where they have been and opportunities for their future.

WestCare

WestCare, whose mission “uplifting of the human spirit,” was founded 40 years ago in Las Vegas.  Since its inception, it has grown to more than 100 locations in 16 U.S. States, the US Virgin Islands and the Pacific Islands headquartered in Guam.  The non-profit organization has a variety of programs available in each of the communities it serves.   For more information on the WestCare Foundation and its mission, visit www.WestCare.com.

Brain Exercises For Senior Citizens by Carson Hill

April 23, 2013 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Articles 

Brain exercise is a great way for senior citizens to maintain brain health  and maintain the focus and clarity that they’ve utilized most of their life! As  adults age, they tend to use their brain less frequently. As a result of the  brain not being challenged, it gradually deteriorates.

Most people attribute the brains deterioration with age. While age certain  can have an impact on the brain, the primary reason for brain decline tends to  be lack of use.

Senior citizens and aging adults can incorporate mind workouts into their day  just like they would an exercise program. With mind workouts they will not work  up a sweat but they will experience some tire and fatigue. This is actually a  very good thing! Good stimulation means challenge and good challenge means mind  fatigue but this is our aim regarding brain exercise.

By means of real brain exercise senior citizens and adults can conquer much  of their fears and anxiety regarding mind dullness and can even sharpen their  minds beyond what they’ve ever achieved mentally!

Seniors and adults who have utilized mind techniques and exercises seem to  remember better, think faster, communicate better and achieve daily activities  with an overall greater amount of confidence. As a result of these exercise,  they tend to lead happier lifestyles.

Anyone can benefit from brain exercises but it tends to be adults and senior  citizens that appreciate them the most. After they’ve noticed the decline in  their mental clarity, it usually only takes a couple weeks of small brain  exercise sessions for them to notice a great difference!

You may find additional resources regarding brain fitness and exercise for  adults and seniors at: http://www.regrowmybrain.info

You will also find great information at: http://www.squidoo.com/brain-exercise-for-senior-citizens

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Carson_Hill

 

Depression in Senior Citizens by David Crumrine

April 12, 2013 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Articles 

Depression is a medical condition that is characterized by feeling down,  depressed, or hopeless; low self-esteem; and loss of interest in things one used  to enjoy. Senior citizens are prone to life-altering changes that can lead one  to feel depressed. Dealing with the trials life throws at us such as, loss,  change, loneliness, or a chronic medical condition can be quite overwhelming.  Still, depression is not a “normal” part of aging. Like heart disease or  diabetes, depression is a medical condition and it can be treated with  medication and therapy. Treatment is effective at alleviating symptoms within a  few weeks in at least 80 percent of people.

It is important that senior citizens and those providing their elder care  understand the symptoms of depression. If you think you or someone you know may  be suffering from depression, identify your symptoms by using the checklist  provided below. Then, if necessary, seek assistance. For senior citizens, the  most frequently used resource is a family doctor. Bringing a trusted friend or  relative may help ease any anxiety when going to an appointment. Understand that  your doctor may suggest a checkup and begin treatment or refer you to a mental  health specialist.

Before you say, “I’m okay”….

Do you feel:

  • Anxious or “empty”
  • Guilty or useless
  • Agitated or irritable
  • Less interested in things you used to enjoy
  • Like no one loves you
  • Life is not worth living

Or if you are:

  • A change in sleeping habits
  • A change in eating habits
  • Persistent headaches, stomach aches, or pain

Remember that these  may be real symptoms of a real medical condition that can be effectively  treated. Talk to your doctor today. Though many senior citizens suffer from  depression, feeling depressed is not a normal part of aging.

 

Health and Wellness tips

There are many measures senior citizens can take to help relieve the symptoms  of depression. Those involved in the elder care of senior citizens experiencing  depression should encourage the senior to follow these tips and improve their  wellbeing.

Check your medications. Senior citizens often take many  medications. Some medications, including those for sleep, blood pressure, and  nervousness, may affect mood. Talk with your doctor about each of the  medications you are taking. Be sure to include all over-the-counter medicines,  vitamins, and herbal supplements to minimize the chances of having side  effects.

Limit alcohol consumption. Alcohol use can bring about  depression. And, when alcohol and drugs are combined, interactions that lead to  depression can occur.

Stay connected. Sometimes, senior citizens find it more difficult  to get out and stay connected with others. Still, talking with friends and  family members, getting a pet, or even finding a new interest or hobby can help  one through this tough time.  Get involved in activities you take pleasure  in, such as reading a good book, going to a ballgame or a taking a class in a  subject that interests to you.

Be active. Physical activity can improve physical and mental  wellbeing. Though some senior citizens believe they cannot exercise, there are  activities like walking, gardening, or working out (even if one is in a  wheelchair) that can be helpful. Make a goal of 30 minutes of activity 5 days a  week. If you have not taken part in physical activity in a while, be sure to  check with your doctor and get his OK before you begin.

Eat healthy and drink plenty of fluids. Choose healthy snacks  like fruits, vegetables, yogurt, or nuts to increase your nutrition and energy.  Also, try to eat well-balanced meals.  Some senior citizens suffer from  loss of appetite and weight loss; if you have experienced either of these,  consult your doctor.

The Caring Space http://www.TheCaringSpace.com

David Crumrine at the Caring Space We are an organization that connects  caregivers and care seekers, providing an easy and affordable resource for  families seeking care for friends/loved ones and caregivers seeking  employment.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=David_Crumrine

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/3021412

  • Senior Industry Network Group Events

    Monthly SING Meetings are held the first Thursday of every month at our NEW location below:

    Desert Canyon - HealthSouth
    9175 W. Oquendo Rd.
    Las Vegas, NV 89148

    S.I.N.G. Agenda:
    - Coffee and bagels will be served
    - A time to show gratitude by thanking those who have sent you referrals
    - Announcements around the room
    - One minute commercials
    - Open Discussion on topics of Self Empowerment

    * When? The 1st Thursday of every month. Networking starts at: 8:00am | Meeting starts at: 8:30am

    * How Much? It’s free!