Senior Sense

senior sense
FEB
15
0

Playing Jeopardy with Middlesex County Older Adults

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By: Gina-Marie Miraglia Wellspring Center for Prevention offers a wide variety of programs and services appropriate for individuals across the lifespan. One of our unique programs, Senior Jeopardy, is a big hit among older adults throughout Middlesex County. This program serves as an interactive and competitively educational game, just like the show! We offer a variety of topics including; Conflict Resolution, Substance Use and Abuse By Older Adults, Nutrition and Healthy Aging, Safe Prescription and OTC Drug Use, Maintaining a Healthy Mind, Healthy Coping, and Taking Control of Your Health. Recently, Wellspring Center for Prevention Preventionists Gina Miraglia and Melisa Damcevska joined the Old Bridge Senior Center and Old Bridge High School seniors for a fun Conflict Resolution Jeopardy game. The ‘Intergenerational Senior Jeopardy’ games take place a few times a year. During these games, we divided the players into two teams of mixed intergenerational seniors then, the teams compete against...
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143 Hits
JUN
27
0

Helping an Elderly Loved One Handle the Loss of a Spouse: What to Do Before & After the Funeral

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By Hazel Bridges No matter what age you are, losing a spouse is a devastating life-moment. It can be difficult to watch your senior loved one go through this emotional process. Sorting through all the details following a loss can be a long, drawn-out process. Most times, the person is completely drained by the time the funeral begins. Here are some ways that you can be there to support your loved one and help them through this difficult time. What to Do in the Immediate Aftermath of Loss The moments following loss are perhaps the most volatile for your loved one. There’s really no way to predict how they may handle the situation, but you can expect that the loss will deeply and profoundly affect them . Your first priority should always be to make sure they are okay and blanket them with your love and support. Sometimes it can feel...
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347 Hits
JUN
06
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Revolutionary Apps End Loneliness in Recovering Addicts

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By Sally Perkins Each year, thousands of recovering addicts return to their old ways. Between 40 and 60% of addicts relapse within a year and too often the reason is due to the individual feeling lonely, according to a study conducted by JAMA. After constant support and interaction with others as they get better, many recovering addicts return to a empty home which can be a difficult situation to come to terms with. Thankfully, revolutionary apps are supporting recovering addicts with their physical health , as well as aiding them as they return to the comfort of their own four walls, but just how can they help those most in need? 24/7 support One of the main methods of preventing a relapse is to avoid the feelings of HALT - Hunger, Anger, Loneliness and Tiredness. Recovering addicts who experience any of these emotions have a significantly higher chance of relapsing, therefore,...
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463 Hits
MAR
31
0

Dangers Smoking Poses To Your Brain

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By Sally Perkins You regularly hear about how smoking causes cancer, but lesser known facts are just as scary. Smoking deprives the brain of oxygen, which can cause it to function less effectively, leading to a feeling of fuzziness or memory loss. Sadly, many people who stop using drugs or alcohol turn to smoking. Studies have found that the odds of smoking among Americans who have a substance abuse problem are more than five times greater than the average population. People in recovery tend to say that they don’t want to give up smoking because it’s the last vice they have or that it’s better than using illicit substances. But smoking comes with many health dangers. It could also negatively impact people in their recovery, by harming their brain functions. Here’s why having a healthier brain after substance addiction requires quitting cigarettes once and for all. Smoking Fires Up The Same...
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  618 Hits
618 Hits
MAR
21
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A Few Sweet Ways Dogs Can Improve the Lives of Seniors

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By Hazel Bridges For thousands of years, dogs have been our protectors and companions, but can owning a dog have even more benefits for seniors? Aside from the constant kisses and nonstop tail wagging, dogs can make late life more enjoyable in so many amazing ways. Here are four proven benefits for seniors who decide pet ownership is right for them. Animals Boost Your Mood and Mental Health One of the most positive impacts pets can have on the life of seniors is the improvement in mental health. Many seniors, and others, who struggle with depression and other mental health issues find solace in having an animal in their life, and the science is there to back them up. Animals can provide much-needed social support for seniors who may be missing connections with friends and family who are gone or far away, which in turn relieves anxiety and loneliness that can...
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  497 Hits
497 Hits
MAR
15
0

Keep Your House Clean For Improved Health and Wellbeing as a Senior

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By Sally Perkins There are 5.5 million seniors in the US that are over the age of 85, making this the fastest growing age group in the US. As seniors age, mobility tends to decline, and tasks like cleaning are challenging. Furthermore, despite being just 13% of the population, seniors are prescribed a third of all medications. This access to heavy medication combined with social isolation can be a toxic mix which may cause addictions to alcohol as well as prescription and recreational drugs. Many of the problems associated with addiction can be dealt with by keeping the house clean. This may mean modifying the routine to make it manageable. Here are four reasons to keep a clean house as a senior. Reduce the Risk of Falls If you have clutter on the floors, you could trip on it. This is especially true when visibility is low, or when you are...
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  399 Hits
399 Hits
MAR
13
0

Alcohol Can Make You Tipsy – In More Ways Than One

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By Helen Varvi, Deputy Director Alcoholism is a disease characterized by a dependency on alcohol. Since alcohol affects almost every organ in the body, chronic heavy drinking is associated with many serious health problems, including pancreatitis, liver disease, heart disease, cancer, and osteoporosis. A fact that is important for older adults to know. Osteoporosis is often known as a silent disease that has its start early in life, and progresses relatively unnoticed and without major symptoms for most of one’s life. . For this reason, it has been called “a pediatric disease with geriatric consequences,” because building healthy bones in one’s youth is important to help prevent osteoporosis and bone problems, including fractures, later in life. Alcohol negatively impacts bone health for several reasons: Excessive alcohol use interferes with the balance of calcium, which is essential for bone health It also increases certain hormone levels, which in turn reduces the body’s...
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  618 Hits
618 Hits
FEB
01
0

Substance Abuse and Seniors

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By Karli Rymer, Wellspring Center for Prevention intern Growing older brings on many changes in life. This includes changes in health, lifestyle, family obligations, work roles, and sources of support. These changes the elderly face are accompanied by physical pain, stress, loneliness, and loss of mobility. It is no wonder why elderly people may turn to alcohol and drugs in later life. The very real struggles of aging may impel seniors towards substance abuse or exacerbate a problem that has been developing for years. In fact, there are 2.5 million older adults with an alcohol or drug problem. The severity of the substance abuse and elderly issue rests in some staggering statistics. Approximately 14% of elderly emergency hospital admissions are a result of alcohol or drug problems as well as 20% of elderly psychiatric hospital admissions. Almost 50% of nursing home residents have alcohol related problems. Widowers over the age of...
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531 Hits
JAN
31
0

Drug Abuse in Seniors: How To Spot The Warning Signs

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By Hazel Bridges With the widespread opioid addiction crisis over the last decade, Americans have seen more and more seniors fall prey to drug abuse. While it can start for many different reasons, it can be extremely dangerous and difficult for the senior population to recover from substance abuse, and unfortunately misuse of prescription drugs by seniors is estimated to grow exponentially by 2020 --a 100% jump from 2001, according to DrugRehab.org . Often, seniors who don’t have sufficient health insurance coverage and are on a tight budget will resort to using medication meant for someone else, or they will self-medicate with over-the-counter drugs or alcohol. They may use these substances to numb the pain or to cope with loneliness, grief, or isolation, all of which affect many seniors even when they have loving family members around them. This use of substances can be dangerous or even deadly to a senior...
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989 Hits
JAN
17
0

Prescription Drugs and Older Adults

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Although people 65 years of age and older comprise only 13% of the population, they account for almost 30% of all medications prescribed in the United States. As a result, older adults are at significant risk for prescription drug abuse and addiction. In addition to prescription medications, many older adults also use over-the-counter (OTC) medicines and dietary supplements, including sharing them with friends. Due to increased rate of illness, changes in the body’s capacity to process medications, and the potential for drug interactions, older adults are more likely to experience. Why senior substance abuse is misdiagnosed Because of insufficient knowledge, limited research data, and hurried office visits, health care providers often overlook alcohol and drug misuse and abuse among older adults. Diagnosis may be difficult because symptoms of alcoholism and drug dependency in older individuals sometimes mimic symptoms of other medical and behavioral disorders common among this population, such as diabetes,...
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676 Hits

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