With the obsession that mainstream media has with the green of youth and looks, one would be forgiven for assuming that dating is exclusively a young people’s game. That only young adults are motivated to look for love and relationships. Turns out that the mainstream media are grossly out of touch with reality.
The fact of the matter is that romance doesn’t have a shelf life. And the need for companionship doesn’t wither as one ages — nurturing fulfilling relationships is as important for the elderly as it is for people in early adulthood. Because there’s one thing about human nature that sticks true regardless of age: no one likes to feel lonely.
The Dating Scene for Seniors
There’s plenty of evidence to suggest that people are not only outliving their ancestors but also staying fitter/healthier for longer. At the same time, older adults are increasingly finding themselves single, owing to a divorce or the death of one’s spouse. This means there are more seniors looking for romance than ever before.
That shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, really. Today’s crop of senior citizens came of age during the sexual revolution. With so many of them unattached, it’s only natural that they would seek out love and relationships.
Needless to say, though, such endeavors aren’t without their challenges. Seniors re-entering the dating scene often have to battle age-old stereotypes and societal beliefs (more on those later). There’s also the limited opportunity to meet potential dates; a typical senior citizen has a smaller social network than the average millennial.
That being said, the internet has opened up alternative routes for such individuals. Social platforms aside, there are sites dedicated to helping older adults find other singles. Elsewhere, assisted living facilities and retirement homes have provided easy outlets for seniors looking to make connections.
The majority of older daters admit that they look for connections on a much deeper level compared to when they were younger. They also tend to approach the dating scene more cautiously — past disappointments remind that success in the dating game is far from guaranteed. In addition, there are plenty of scammers out there looking to sweet-talk their way into the wallet of an unsuspecting senior.
Redefining The Experience
As highlighted earlier, there are lots of misconceptions about senior citizens and what they want/don’t want in a relationship. So let’s start by setting the records straight:
-Age doesn’t matter much: It’s easy to think that an individual in their wisdom years seeks out similarly-aged colleagues, but nothing could be further from the truth. In reality, one becomes more flexible in their approach to companionship as they get older.
-Neither does appearance: Older adults are wise enough to know that looks have very little to do with someone’s potential to be a great match.
-Not everybody is looking for a long-term commitment: While the fundamental premise behind dating is to find love and marriage, not everyone shares the same goal. Some seniors look for companionship and nothing more while others want someone to share their favorite hobbies.
In a nutshell, senior citizens approach dating a lot differently from their younger counterparts. With more life experience comes a stronger sense of one’s identity and, more importantly, a good grasp of what one wants from a potential lover. Additionally, seniors have less-constricting schedules compared to millennials, which means they have more time to explore potential partners.
Achieving Common Ground
Dating life for senior couples can take many shapes, depending on each person wants. But as always, success hinges on the ability to find common ground. This in turn boils down to what one wants from a relationship — whether it’s companionship or romance.
That being said, a healthy relationship usually begins with a friendship. So while each of the aforementioned objectives defines the dating experience uniquely, the two can actually co-exist in practice. If both parties just want a companion, they simply keep matters at the friendship level.
Still, it’s not unheard of for seniors to establish ‘friends-with-benefits’ arrangements, as they’re colloquially known. Some even take the more complicated route of seeking out multiple companions at the same time. And this has nothing to do with the lack of morals, as strange as that might sound. Rather, it’s based on the recognition that a single partner might not be the solution for all their needs.
For those who prefer to keep things more conventional, nothing can be as satisfying as finding that special someone with whom they can share their life with. When that happens, it only makes sense for the couple to take things to another level. Although this brings the prospect of tying the knot, it’s also the reason why the elderly make up 25% of all cohabiters today.
A Way Forward
Cohabitation, while often acting as a stepping stone towards marriage, is becoming increasingly popular among senior couples. This applies even when both partners are open to the idea of long-term commitment. Does this mean that marriage has lost its meaning to the elderly?
Well, not exactly. On one hand, attitudes change based on past experiences. There are those who’ve already spent years (or decades) with a significant other, only to be rendered single by divorce. For obvious reasons, such individuals will be more content in a relationship that doesn’t involve the exchange of vows.
On a more optimistic note, cohabitation is often seen as the more practical way of surviving life when one gets old. Couples can take care of each other physically, emotionally and mentally while living together. Married or not, what matters is to have someone ready to devote their time.
For others, the decision to avoid nuptials has more to do with finances. A lady can lose their pension if she remarries before hitting the legal retirement age. On top of that, older adults tend to be submerged deeper in debt — this complicates the whole ‘for better, for worse’ concept.
Considerations For the Elderly Looking to Remarry
Even as the majority of senior couples seem content with cohabiting, a small percentage still want the security of being in wedlock. Remarriage at this stage of life is a pursuit not to be taken lightly, to say the least. Too many seniors have taken the plunge without proper planning only to suffer devastating consequences.
The question, therefore, becomes what elements couples should prioritize as they
-Prenups: These serve to protect each party’s interests from misallocation or confusion after their partner’s demise or a divorce. Prenuptial agreements are particularly crucial when one individual has property that’s meant to be passed down to a child.
-Credit histories: It’s common sense that people should review their partner’s spending habits before taking on their financial obligations.
-Taxes: Couples should keep in mind that getting married creates new tax consequences. On one hand, is the likelihood of landing in a higher tax bracket after incomes are combined. Alternatively, a lesser-endowed individual may benefit from better treatment of their tax obligations. Whatever the case, it behooves them to consult a tax professional early on.
-Medical benefits: Tying the knot could mean being ineligible for medical benefits. Kids could also be denied financial assistance on the account of the new spouses’ income. It’s very important that couples put in place workarounds for these limitations in time.
-Estate planning: Life insurance policies and succession documents need to be updated way before vows are recited.
-Relationships: Remarrying couples are often reminded that their relationships will affect more parties besides themselves and their children. Tensions can arise between past and present kin, as well as each individual’s friends from previous relationships. Engaged seniors should therefore evaluate the potential consequences of their union and make them known to the relevant parties.
Sex and Intimacy Have Little to Do With Age
Unlike what some would have you believe, an increase in one’s age doesn’t diminish their sexual appetite. Research from the University of Manchester shows that the majority of people want to continue having an active sex life well into their 70s and 80s. Like everyone else, senior citizens consider this essential to their happiness, well-being, and quality of life in general. Which is a good thing, given the role sex plays in sustaining a healthy relationship.
And it’s not to say that the elderly are too shy to engage in casual sex. If reports from senior living communities are anything to go by, they can be just as adventurous as anyone else. A good number of seniors have admitted to taking advantage of such facilities to hook up with other people.
Shocking as that might sound, there are several factors that motivate such tendencies:
-Convergence of needs: Specifically, women become more assertive and men start to appreciate the emotional connection. This encourages exploration on both sides.
-Less stress: No more dealing with the headaches of building a career and/or raising kids. This basically moves sex up on one’s priority list.
-No nasty surprises: With fears of pregnancy firmly in the rear-view mirror, people feel freer to explore their sex menu.
But let’s not get carried away here: Certain conditions that come with age can (and do) take sex out of the equation. For men, an erection problem can reduce intercourse to nothing but a distant memory. Ladies, on the other hand, may be forced to retire due to the side-effects that come with menopause.
So it’s fair to say that not all seniors are sexually active. Although some have successfully overcome their physical limitations by seeking treatment, it’s not always possible to sail past the psychological scars they leave behind. Additionally, ageist stereotypes can discourage both men and women from bringing health problems to their doctor’s attention.
At the end of the day, how your sex life evolves as you grow older is all up to you. Your body will inevitably change as you grow older. But these changes don’t have to get in the way of expressing intimacy — you just need to adapt accordingly.
STDs are a Concern
It’s the unfortunate but unavoidable part of the sex equation: sexually transmitted diseases. Common sense dictates that if a senior can be as active as someone in their 20s, they’re just as likely to contract an STD as the latter are. Worse still, older isn’t necessarily more informed with respect to prevention: it’s suggested that contraception use is lowest among senior folks.
Sadly, figures from a CDC report released in 2012 have only confirmed this; STI rates among older demographics have tripled in less than 10 years. There are several factors to blame for this:
-Misconceptions: Some seniors don’t think that the idea of safe sex applies to them. Strange as that sounds, it’s worth noting that most STI familiarization campaigns are usually addressed at young folks.
-Still, on the point of familiarization, healthcare providers often overlook the topic of safe sex when attending to seniors. This leads to the precarious scenario where erectile dysfunction drugs and vaginal lubricants are prescribed without offering patients condoms.
-Lack of screening: Both doctors and patients are to blame here; neither party pays attention to sexual history when checkups are being conducted.
Truth be told, however, STI prevalence among seniors hasn’t risen to epidemic levels. The rising number of cases has more to do with an uptick of diagnoses than anything else. Health experts have also pointed out that this age group doesn’t face as many threats as younger generations do.
Obviously, the key to curbing STIs is to enlighten and share. Older folks should feel empowered to talk to their doctors about sex — this would help eradicate preconceptions about what their patients are doing. Likewise, physicians should remind everyone of the need to approach sex responsibly. This, of course, goes hand-in-hand with making condoms readily available.
Senior citizens should also hold the safe sex talk among themselves. It doesn’t matter whether one is still sexually active — sharing experiences and concerns will compel people to take more responsibility. And who’s to say that society couldn’t use a greater understanding of sex in the golden years?
Boca Home Care Services is not a dating agency, but they will match seniors in Broward or Palm Beach counties with a compatible home care aide to make life easier and freer in your pursuit of continued happiness.
‘Dementia’ is an umbrella term that refers to a whole host of brain diseases characterized by changes in cognitive abilities. People with dementia often have troubles understanding and remembering. Someone who is diagnosed with dementia is likely to have their daily functioning ability significantly impacted. As people age, their minds naturally slow down and become duller, but in people with dementia, the effects of aging are accelerated and cognitive problems occur. While there hasn’t been a whole lot of research that’s been successful in determining prevention of dementia, a recent study, known as Sprint, has gotten some attention as its findings have found a link between hypertension treatment and staving off dementia.
Symptoms and Causes of Dementia
Dementia is sometimes experienced as a type of brain fog. People who suffer from it report difficulty with making simple decisions such as what clothes to wear that suit the weather when to start getting ready for an event or outing, and overall confusion. As dementia progresses, family members find the personality of their loved one also changes. Some individuals become more aggressive and are angered and defensive about their confusion.
Dementia is caused by a number of brain diseases and that is one of the reasons it is so difficult to treat. Without knowing the actual cause, it can be difficult to come up with an effective course of treatment. The most common known cause of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease; others include Lewy body, vascular, mixed dementia and frontotemporal dementia. The differences in dementias are decided by the root causes of the disease, and depending upon those root causes, the type of symptoms that present along with the progression of the disease are determined.
Complications of Dementia
Complications of Dementia, especially over long periods of time, involve the brain’s ability to respond to situations and absorb new information. While complications are case by case, there are some common complications that occur such as a lack of the brain’s ability to absorb new information and learn new tasks, the increasing habit of repeating oneself, losing objects, and getting easily confused or disoriented. For people with advanced dementia, they can get lost in their own homes and forget why they left one room to enter another.
With the progression of dementia, judgment, reasoning and coping abilities slowly disintegrate. Most often, these changes are extremely frustrating for the individual and can lead to aggression, irritability, anxiety, depression, and feelings of restlessness that are difficult to remedy.
Communicating becomes a challenge as words start to fade from the memory and become jumbled in the mind. This alone often causes sufferers of dementia to pull back from the social world around them, which only exacerbates the symptoms to the extreme.
The ability to focus and problem-solve disappears as it demands attention that is no longer there, and activities that involve a set order of tasks or events become impossible.
People who are diagnosed with dementia are more than merely forgetful; these people are forgetful and experience cognitive issues to such a level that their ability to function in every-day life is compromised. These people will eventually lose their independence as they will be unable to function and perform basic everyday tasks and responsibilities.
When it comes to officially diagnosing a patient with dementia, this is not as simple as it sounds. While some of the symptoms can be clear and extreme, a definitive diagnosis cannot be made without an examination of the patient’s brain tissue via a biopsy, or after death via an autopsy. Obviously, these diagnostic strategies are not always practical, so what doctors will do is attempt a series of questions whose answers will allow them to assess their patient’s cognitive abilities. These questions will likely involve inquiries related to memory, decision-making, language, the ability to recognize repeat objects, and the person’s ability to follow basic directions and complete simple tasks.
In addition, brain scans can show changes in the brain’s structure. CT scans and MRIs are the most common scans used to identify dementia and some of the conditions, such as a stroke, that can cause dementia.
The Sprint Study
While the results of Sprint, the large-scale cardiovascular study, only apply to people who are over the age of 50, what it suggests is that people who are receiving extreme treatment for hypertension are less likely to develop dementia than those who receive regular treatment for high blood pressure.
The study revealed a link between those whose blood pressure was dropped to 120 and below, thanks to aggressive hypertension treatment. The other side of the trial offered subjects standard treatment for high blood pressure that reduced it to 140. Researchers noted that once the blood pressure was reduced to under 120, those people experienced a significant decrease in the risk of developing cardiovascular events and cognitive impairments.
As Sprint was a cardiovascular study, the cognitive branch of the study was christened ‘Sprint Mind’. Sprint Mind researchers continued to follow the subjects for over three years, and over 8,000 of those subjects received a cognitive assessment. What the results revealed was that the patients in the group that was intensively treated for hypertension and whose blood pressure was dropped to 120 developed fewer incidences of dementia, compared to the group whose treatment was standard and did not reduce blood pressure so significantly.
The most impressive outcome of the study was in the area of mild cognitive impairment (MCI). In the group that was less intensively treated, 353 people developed MCI, while only 287 from the intensive group developed MCI. The numbers in this arm of the study were significant as it worked out to a 19 percent lower risk of developing MCI in the group whose blood pressure was significantly lowered.
Long-Term Effects and the Sprint Study
When it comes to studies of this nature, it is often a long process before any results seem concrete enough to justify adjusting standard medical practice and treatment regimens. Especially in the case of dementia, a class of brain disease that is known to develop slowly over many years, it is difficult to truly understand the implications of such a study over such a short period of time.
Portrait of elderly senior men
Lead researchers suggest that the results would be more applicable and revealing if the subjects were observed over longer periods of time. The Alzheimer’s Association was in agreement, which is why they funded the study for two more years.
Sprint Mind has, however, offered some hope by shining a light on the prevention of MCI, one of the most common risk factors for dementia. Experts agree that preventing cases of MCI equates to preventing later cases of dementia.
In addition to the fact that the study followed its participants and analyzed results after only three years, not long enough when full onset of dementia is a degenerative disease that progresses slowly; the study faced some additional limitations. Some of the unclear aspects of the study’s results involve how people with additional conditions such as diabetes would have fared. As hypertension usually causes a number of other health complications, the study seems somewhat remiss in its findings of how people with more disorders than just hypertension would have reacted in terms of incidences of MCI.
There is also the proposal that as former studies have suggested hypertension provides some protection against dementia, there should be more data on seniors that are older than 80 to truly gauge the strength of the connection between low blood pressure and cognitive problems.
Prevention and Cure of Alzheimers Disease
There is no known cure for Alzheimer’s disease or medications that can stop of reverse the reconfiguring of the brain’s structure that it causes. There are, however, medications that can help alleviate some of the symptoms and slow down the disease progression. There are certain medications that are effective in slowing down memory loss: rivastigmine, galantine, and donepezil.
When it comes to vascular dementia, obviously stroke prevention is of the utmost importance. As high blood pressure is a cause of stroke, lowering it to the extent of the extreme group in the Sprint study can further decrease the likelihood of later development of MCI and strokes.
There have also been additional studies that suggest the more withdrawn a person with dementia becomes, the faster the disease will progress. Social interactions are key to slowing down the progress of the disease as it keeps areas of the brain stimulated and engaged, rather than lying dormant and simply disintegrating with the passing of time. Social interactions can also release powerful hormones known to stave off certain symptoms related to dementia such as depression and anxiety.
Regardless of the inconclusive nature regarding some of the findings of the Sprint study, what does seem definitive is that there is a correlation between blood pressure, vascular health, and cognitive health that warrants further exploration. With a disease class as prevalent and widespread as dementia, any light that is shed on the topic brings hope that a fuller understanding of how to prevent the minor cognitive impairments that lead to dementia is on the horizon.
You may have heard happiness is based on your attitude. This is not simply a cliché. Your attitudes and philosophies have much to do with how happy you are in your everyday life, and even how happy you are with yourself. When you understand your attitudes, and perhaps make some changes, you can find happiness as you grow older. Your senior years really can be the best years of your life.
We Can Learn From A Roman Emperor
If you think back to your school days, you may recall a Roman emperor named Marcus Aurelius. While he ruled for nearly two decades, from 161 to 180, he was also known as a great philosopher. His personal writings included 12 books known as Meditations. There are quotations in Meditations that are relevant to today’s seniors.
There are two places you cannot live: in the past, and in the future. If you live in the past you can be overwhelmed by sadness, sorrow, or regret, and focusing too much on the future can cause needless stress and worry. Think instead of what Marcus Aurelius advised: “Confine yourself to the present.”
When you focus on the present day, you will see how much it has to offer. You can resolve problems when they occur, and live in the moment. When you develop the ability to do this, you can find happiness and joy in everyday life.
“Everything- a horse, a vine- is created for some duty… For what task, then, were you yourself created?” When an elderly person reads this statement, he may think it is foolish. You may feel you have accomplished your purpose in life, and that your days of productivity are long over. After all, you are elderly now, so what more could there be to do?
If you meditate on the statement, though, you will see there is much more to your life than the accomplishments in your past. Whether you are sixty or eighty, you can find new purpose and meaning in your life. You have something worthwhile to contribute, so start thinking about your special talents. You can use what you learned in youth or young adult years to make a positive contribution today.
When you do your part to make the world a better place, you will see yourself in a new light. Others will appreciate you, and you will appreciate yourself, too.
The Emperor also said: “The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts.” We all know it can be too easy to become engulfed in negative thoughts. If we continue to entertain negative thoughts, they can affect our emotions and even our health.
For health and happiness, thoughts do matter. During the aging years, much negativity is due to the realities of aging. You may resent new limitations if you were always healthy and independent, or you may be fearful of the future and what growing older may mean for you.
In the past, the concept of “aging gracefully” generally meant giving up. Individuals who moved into their senior years were expected to care less about their personal appearances, stop working, and put fun behind them. Today, though, acceptance of aging does not mean giving up on yourself or giving up on your life. Instead of entertaining negative thoughts, think of what you can have, be, and do.
The elderly population today is healthier than similar generations in the past. Fewer seniors spend their aging years in long-term care facilities, and many older people continue to work or hold volunteer positions. Active seniors today have full social lives and continue to be a part of their communities.
A sad old lady.
With all these benefits of aging today, you do not need to sacrifice happiness for negativity. When you realize how many choices you have, your thoughts can be positive and you can be happy.
Marcus Aurelius had more to say: “When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive- to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.” When you meditate on this statement upon awakening in the morning, or before you go to bed at night, you will develop a new sense of happiness and peace of mind.
What Is Stoicism?
If you have lived long enough to be elderly, you have experienced hardships during your lifetime. You needed self-discipline, sound judgment, and clear thinking in order to be objective.
The passive reactions taught by Stoicism can help you during your aging years. You do not need to be bothered by every external event. You also do not need to be overly emotional about your own personal situation.
If you need help, ask for assistance. However, you should not allow yourself to become a complainer. Not only will this make everyone around you miserable, but it can affect your own state of happiness, too.
Life is not easy at any point in time, but seniors often have special concerns. Concerns about your health, family, limitations, or various other issues can make it tempting to complain to everyone you meet. Instead, think of how you dealt with hardships in the past. You can face any difficulty when you know you have the personal strength to get through it.
What Is Zen?
When you hear of Zen, you probably think of meditation. While the Zen way of life often includes meditation, you may also be interested in learning about the Zen philosophy.
Buddha created the Eightfold Path and the Four Noble Truths. The Eightfold Path consists of Right View, Right Intention, Right Speech, Right Action, Right Livelihood, Right Effort, Right Mindfulness, and Right Concentration.
The Four Noble Truths can help you understand why you are unhappy with your life, and how you can end the unhappiness. In addition to following the Eightfold Path, you will learn that some suffering is part of life, and other suffering can be prevented. One way to prevent suffering is to let go of unnecessary needs, wants, and wishes.
You may be wondering how you can apply these attitudes and philosophies to your own life. Perhaps it is human nature to want what we do not have, wish for something that is not in our best interests, or believe we need something when we really do not need it at all. These patterns can cause a considerable amount of pain and misery when your actual goal is to be happy.
You can assess how these patterns fit into your life and are affecting your overall quality of life. Perhaps you miss the physical strength you had when you were younger, and wish you had it now. If you think rationally, you know you are no longer young, and aging does bring limitations. If you can start to accept what you can and cannot do, and what you can and cannot have, you are not giving up. You are clearing the path to happiness and a higher quality of life.
How Happiness Can Come From A Positive Attitude
The desire for happiness is universal. It is not dependent on a person’s age. However, a mistake people of all ages can make is to believe happiness is something they can find. A person can spend his entire lifetime searching for happiness, only to learn it cannot be found in external places, people, or things.
When you want to be truly happy, the important point to keep in mind is happiness must be created from within yourself, and this starts with a positive attitude.
Almost every day, there is something to be grateful for, and a reason to be happy. Spend some time filling your mind with these reasons. You may be surprised when a smile breaks out on your face. You can be happy, and even joyful.
Second, there is something to look forward to nearly every day. From a favorite dessert to a movie with a friend, looking forward to something you enjoy can increase a positive state of mind.
Third, many changes occur during the senior years. It is up to you to decide how to deal with these changes. When you develop limitations and need help, you can be angry and resentful or you can appreciate the help. If you develop a medical issue, you can complain about how unfair it is or you can follow your doctor’s advice to stay as healthy as possible. If you have lost loved ones, you can become depressed with grief, or you can remember the great times you had together.
Life is not always fair, and often not easy. It is the approach you take to these realities that make a difference. No matter what you encounter in life as you are aging, you can maintain a positive attitude. Happiness requires acceptance, but you can also find something good in nearly any situation.
You can sit quietly and meditate alone at a favorite time of the day, or you can mull it over in your mind as you go about your daily activities. You will see your attitude does make a difference. You can continue to enjoy happiness and peace of mind as you age.
The Senior Years And Changes
Aging brings many changes. Regardless of your specific age, you are at a stage in life that is much different than any you have experienced before. For many seniors, this stage seems to occur suddenly. Perhaps you looked in the mirror recently, and noticed you looked much older.
Perhaps you were doing a chore around your home, and noticed you lacked energy or developed aches and pains.
Perhaps you have been feeling sad because you miss old friends who passed away, or hesitated in attending a local event because you were afraid to be out alone. Perhaps you often worry about your safety or feel isolated because your family members all live far away.
These are some of the changes commonly experienced by seniors. There is much you can do to
determine the impact these changes have on your life. The Serenity Prayer is a good way to look at it. Paraphrased, there are some things you cannot change, some things you can change, and the key is knowing the difference.
This is not your grandparents’ generation when elderly men and women essentially resigned themselves to their lives being over. Today’s elderly population is not content to sit in rocking chairs or spend all their time watching television. Seniors today have better health, and, equally important, more options.
This does not mean you do not have limitations. Changes that accompany natural aging can include health issues, losses, and the mirror reminding you that you are no longer young. While you must accept these changes, you can also look at opportunities to be your best self.
You can stay as healthy as possible by cooperating with your personal physician. You can resolve to eat nutritious meals each day, and engage in moderate activity. You can keep your mind sharp, make new friends, learn about safety for seniors, and be an active part of your community.
If you are bothered by worries or fears about your everyday life or your future, start by thinking about changes. Take a little time to decide which factors you must learn to accept, and which factors are within your control. You will see there is much you have control over in your life, and decide it is time to take action. Whether you are elderly or still a younger senior, you can take steps to make this stage in your life happy and fulfilling.
Options For Living Arrangements
Most of today’s seniors do not need to choose between moving into a long-term care facility and moving in with their adult-aged children. As elderly people today, we can be glad we have other options.
For healthy, active seniors, independent living is an option. This can be an excellent option if you do not have serious medical issues and do not require daily assistance.
Independent living stresses personal freedom and the chance to enjoy an active life. Independent living communities have many activities for seniors, opportunities for socializing with others in your age group, and clinics or hospitals nearby so seniors can easily access health care services.
With independent living, your golden years can be fun and exciting. You can take up a hobby, take classes, or play a sport. You can make new friends with other seniors, and share good times.
You can continue to have freedom and independence, too. If you enjoy cooking your own meals, privacy, or time alone to read, you will appreciate all the choices you have with independent living.
Assisted living is an option for seniors who need assistance or extra support in their daily lives. Assisted living communities have medical professionals available 24/7, as well as a support staff for other types of assistance. Perhaps you have a medical condition that needs to be monitored, require reminders for your medications, or are concerned you may experience a medical emergency.
Assisted living also provides help with activities of daily living, or ADL’s. Perhaps you need help with your laundry, bathing, or personal grooming. These are some of the benefits you can have in an assisted living community.
There is a third option that appeals to many seniors today. Aging-in-place is becoming more and more popular. If you have been independent throughout your adult life, it is not unusual for you to want to maintain your independence. An easy way to accomplish this is to continue living in your own home.
When you live at home, you can enjoy the comfort of familiar surroundings. You can keep all of your cherished possessions and keep the pets that you love. Aging-in-place is also an opportunity to live your life on your own terms. You can eat the foods you like at every meal, set your own bedtime, and make the most of your free time. Your daily schedule and decisions can be your own.
While aging-in-place is ideal for many modern seniors, this does not mean you cannot benefit from a little extra help. As more seniors are aging at home, there is quite a demand for qualified home care aides. If you decide to stay at home as you grow older, there are many ways in which you can benefit from a home care aide.
One benefit is assistance with ADL’s. Even healthy seniors can need help with bathing, choosing suitable clothes, and preparing nutritious meals. If you need help with light housekeeping or outside errands, an aide can do these chores, too.
A second benefit is safety. Elderly persons who live alone often worry about intruders, fire, slip-and-fall accidents, and phone scams. Your home care aide will ensure your home is safe. Even when you are alone at night, you will know your home is secure.
Companionship is a third reason to hire an aide. Your aide can accompany you when you attend local events, or go out to dinner. You will have someone to talk to when you are at home. When you see your aide genuinely cares about you, you will know you have made a new friend. Even if there are no other seniors nearby, you never need to feel lonely or isolated. You will look forward to your aide visiting you on a regular basis.
Your health is a priority for your home care aide. While aides do not perform skilled nursing services, there is much she can do to help you stay healthy. Your mind can stay sharp and alert when you play games with your aide. Your physical strength and coordination can improve when your aide helps you do little exercise routines. You can have a good time while maintaining your best possible state of health.
A special skill an aide has is record-keeping. During her visits, she will make notes of your condition or progress. This information can greatly help your physician or nurse. It is an easy way for your health care provider to know if any changes need to be made for the sake of your health.
A home care aide can also make aging-in-place easier for your family. Whether your loved ones live nearby or far away, they are concerned about your well-being. Perhaps they are not entirely supportive of your decision to remain at home, because they worry about your health and safety. They may be concerned that you are isolated, and may become lonely and depressed.
These worries can disappear when your family learns you have hired a home care aide. If they have the chance to meet your aide, they will be delighted. Your aide will be fully trained, qualified for the job, and loves working with seniors. She will be aware of an elderly person’s special needs, and the needs you have as an individual. Your loved ones can have peace of mind when you have a home care aide.
There are many reasons to choose aging–in-place during your elderly years. If you are considering this option or have already made the decision, you do not need to do it all alone. The main reason there is such a demand for home care aides is so many seniors are choosing this option.
You can have one of the best home care aides that is a perfect match for you. Whether you need a little help in your everyday life, or simply want to avoid isolation, you have found the ideal solution. There is a wonderful aide ready to meet you and become a part of your life.
Happiness And Aging
There are so many options for today’s seniors that make this the perfect time to enter your golden years. When you make the choices that are right for you and take some time to develop positive attitudes, it can truly be one of the best stages of your life.
You will see happiness is not reserved for young people. When you accept what you cannot change, and change what you can, your senior years will be an exciting time to be alive.
Aging is a part of the natural process of life. While many of the older population can maintain lifestyles that allow them to be active and completely independent, there are people who require special care, usually as a result of age, a medical condition, or location. Non-medical in home care is an excellent option for many seniors because it meets many of their needs while ensuring that they remain relatively independent and comfortable in their own homes or in a home environment.
What is Non-Medical Home Care?
Home care is professionally-provided care offered to persons who have special needs. This type of service involves long-term care, and it can be formal or informal. Formal home care is provided by a medically trained aide, such as a registered nurse. This is usually the form of home care required for people who require medically-necessary management, such as those who are chronically ill or are recovering from surgery.
Informal home care, on the other hand, is provided by people who do not necessarily have medical training, such as aides, caregivers, volunteers, assistants, friends, and family members. These individuals simply have to have basic knowledge about proper steps and techniques in taking care of the patients and ensuring that their basic needs are met. Informal home care is often provided for the elderly, including those who require medication reminders or those who are recovering from an illness. It may also be provided for individuals who need help moving around, cooking, grooming, or running errands.
What Types of Services are Provided in Home Care?
Individuals who provide non-medical home care services may perform a number of tasks that are limited to custodial care. These individuals are skilled and have professional experience, often working under the supervision of a medical professional, such as a registered nurse. Some of the most common services that non-medical home care individuals provide include:
– running errands such as paying bills and buying groceries
– providing transportation for socialization, doctor’s appointments, and other social activities
– providing light housekeeping, including vacuuming, doing the laundry, and washing dishes
– cooking and preparing meals
– providing assistance for bathing, hygiene, dressing, and general grooming
– providing companionship for patients living alone
– offering medication reminders for patients who may be chronically ill or require special medications
– managing finances
– assistance in daily activities
Who Needs Home Care Services?
Home care can be a convenient solution for many people and not just seniors. People who require regular assistance in performing day-to-day tasks either long-term or for a limited period of time can use the assistance of a trained and skilled aide or caregiver. A home care service provider can offer assistance for several hours a day or as a live-in aide who is available 24/7.
Home care is also a good solution for individuals who live alone and require help for day-to-day activities, or those who have limited mobility. A home care aide can also provide much-needed assistance for individuals who may have special emotional or mental requirements.
Are There Types of Services that Non-Medical Home Care Providers Are Not Allowed to Provide?
A non-medical home care aide is not allowed to administer medications using medical procedures such as injections and IVs, or perform procedures that are often medically supervised, such as occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech therapy, wound care, medical equipment, and vital signs monitoring, and specialized care for certain medical conditions. These services are only performed by licensed medical professionals, such as nurses, therapists, and nurse managers to ensure the patient’s safety and well-being.
Benefits of Home Care in Florida
Florida is a popular destination for snowbirds seeking respite from the cold during the winter months. Snowbirds, particularly seniors, find Florida’s warm, balmy weather calming and comfortable. The higher temperature in Florida is the main reason why seniors choose it as their preferred place of retirement or winter vacation. According to medical experts, cold weather has adverse effects on the elderly, particularly those who are suffering from medical conditions such as cardiovascular heart disease, liver damage, and kidney problems. Extreme cold weather could also lead to a dangerous condition like hypothermia.
The warm temperatures that Florida enjoys are far more conducive for relaxation and healing, particularly among the elderly. Mild temperatures, proximity to beaches, a lively social scene, and excellent infrastructure and facilities make Florida a favorite place for rest and recreation, especially for snowbirds.
The sunshine state is also ideal for seniors looking to find some comfort from the cold weather because of its mild winters, affordable housing in many areas, and opportunities to remain active. Many retirees flock to Florida for its taxes, facilities, and food, something that incoming snowbirds will appreciate. The infrastructure of the state is also designed to meet the needs of this population, which makes many areas of the state easy to navigate.
Benefits of Non-Medical Home Care Services
The services of a non-medical home care aide can offer a number of advantages for people who need it most. These advantages include:
Home care allows individuals to receive the care they need in an environment they are comfortable in. Since the services are brought to them, they still enjoy the freedom to do what they want and make the choices they want in terms of their social preferences. In case they have limited mobility, a home care aide can still customize the type of services he or she offers to ensure that the individual feels at home in the best way possible.
– Care When and Where It is Needed
The goal of home care is to provide the client with the best possible attention so that their needs are met and their health is ensured. A home care aide can provide the necessary attention, nutrition, and basic medical supervision that a person needs without significantly disrupting their lifestyle.
– Personalized Care
Home care is preferred by many families because their loved ones can be taken care of and receive the support they need without having to adapt to the routines that care facilities have. Care facilities operate on a fixed schedule, wherein the residents are expected to participate in certain activities with a group at a specific time. Home care, on the other hand, can be flexible and services can be chosen to adapt to the requirements of the client. Since these services consider the best approaches to make the client’s life comfortable and more convenient, home care helps the client avoid drastic changes in their lifestyle.
– Focused Attention on the Client
Home care is personalized in nature and with a one-on-one approach to care, the aide can provide focused attention on the client. As a result, the client’s needs are considered primary and are more likely to be met and satisfied. In a care facility, a client may have to compete for a caregiver’s attention against several other clients. With the level of attention that a client can enjoy in home care, he or she is more likely to feel safe and secure.
A home care aide charges on a per hour basis, with lower rates for live-in care. Individuals who only require a minimum number of hours a day can save on the cost of care since they only have to pay for the hours for which they need assistance. For clients who have care insurance, their policy can also help pay for home care cost.
– Clients Are Allowed to Keep Pets
Studies have shown that keeping pets is healthy for the elderly because they provide unquestioning companionship, loyalty, security, and unconditional love. Pet ownership has also shown to be helpful in promoting calmness among the elderly, particularly those suffering from dementia. It has also shown to help reduce the risks of heart disease. Since home care allows older clients to own and keep pets, they enjoy the many positive effects of having animal companions on their health and well-being.
– Easy Monitoring By Family Members
The personalized nature of home care allows family members to provide instructions to the aide to ensure that their loved ones receive the best care possible. Family members can also keep in touch with the aide to monitor the progress and condition of their loved ones. With these frequent updates, family members will have peace of mind knowing that their loved one is safe and comfortable.
– Better Health and Recovery
Patients who underwent surgery or are recovering from an illness are more likely to heal faster in a home environment than in a hospital or care facility. A home care arrangement also limits the number of people that the client comes in contact with, which helps reduce the risk of exposure to harmful microorganisms often found in hospitals, medical clinics, and care facilities.
– People Can Remain At Home
Moving to a new place can be very disruptive to the physical and emotional well-being of an individual, particularly to the elderly who are likely to have grown used to their environment. Home care provides older adults the chance to live in a home environment where they can find solace and security. As such, seniors can avoid the trauma associated with moving or transferring to a strange place where they may have to share living space with other people.
Determining If Home Care is the Right Option
As people age, their abilities become diminished to a certain extent and their needs change. Some of the changes that could prompt a decision to move to home care may include:
– diminished capability in performing daily activities such as grocery shopping, driving, taking out the trash, and cooking meals
– problems with completing basic chores around the house
– limited mobility due to aging, a medical condition, or physical disability
– weight loss due to improper nutrition as a result of inability to prepare meals
– problems with performing personal hygiene and grooming
– social isolation
– falls and injuries
– health issues
– forgetfulness or change in personality
Majority of seniors prefer to stay at home or in a residence of their choice as they age. A home care facility in the warm state of Florida may be the best option for individuals who wish to enjoy an active lifestyle, keep to their habits, and relax on a vacation-like atmosphere while enjoying the assistance of a skilled and knowledgeable professional. A home care aide can provide the necessary support and assistance in day-to-day activities while allowing the client to keep their independence in an environment that empowers and protects them.
Musculoskeletal disorders constitute a major health problem around the world. They are known to cause pain and disability in the elderly. Some of the common maladies associated with the disorders include osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, sarcopenia, soft tissue rheumatism, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia and more. The differential diagnosis and proper therapeutic management of these conditions are vital.
Global aging rates have increased considerably in recent years.
Woman With Back Pain
This necessitates expanding healthcare solutions designed to manage orthopedic issues. The aging of the population has profound implications on various facets of life, particularly healthcare. Responding in a timely manner to these demands means not only increasing the quality of life for seniors, which is the most critical aspect, but also decreasing the relative cost of social assistance and health services.
If poorly managed, musculoskeletal disorders can drastically reduce the quality of life of sufferers.
Conditions affecting the musculoskeletal system
Osteoarthritis (OA) is a condition characterized by pain and joint stiffness that progressively leads to a reduction or loss of joint function. It is one of the most common musculoskeletal diseases in middle and advanced age persons.
The prevalence of the condition increases with age. Reports show prevalence rates of more than 75 percent in individuals over the age of 70. In addition, it can reach up to 95 percent for individuals over 80 years of age. Between 40 and 60 percent of patients with OA experience symptoms, such as pain, stiffness, and deformity of the joints.
Although the prevalence rates for both males and females who are 50 years and below is identical, females show high rates after 50. This is linked to the combined effect of hormonal influences, lifestyle and high blood pressure levels.
The number of affected cases is expected to rise in tandem with the increased life expectancy of the population. The appearance of symptoms is slow and progressive and the most common include swelling, stiffness, deformity and joint cramps. These signs occur mainly in joints that support the weight, such as the knee and hip. The condition may also affect sites exposed to joint overload, traumas, biomechanical alterations, and infections.
Localized symptoms are usually associated with radiological abnormalities, such as irregular reduction of the joint space, sclerosis, subchondral cysts that affect bones and osteophyte formation. These complications are not always detected in the early stages of the disease.
Key risk factors associated with the development and progression of osteoarthritis include age, gender, family history, obesity, and repeated joint microtrauma.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic, systemic inflammatory disease characterized by the destruction of the synovial membrane. The condition has a prevalence rate of two percent in people over 60 years of age. The prevalence of RA in men increases gradually with age and over 45 years for women reaching a peak at 75 years, at which time it begins to decline. This aspect has been attributed to the role that hormones play in women.
Symptoms include incapacitating morning stiffness and pain that mainly affects large proximal joints (shoulders, hips, and knees). These signs are accompanied by fatigue and weight loss. A physical examination can show the presence of synovitis of the shoulders, including proximal metacarpophalangeal and interphalangeal wrists.
The complications may reduce the patient’s mobility. Aging is associated with a high prevalence of organospecific and non-organospecific autoantibodies, which are linked to rheumatoid factor (a protein produced by the immune system). The latter is of particular importance since it has been reported that its presence in healthy older adults is higher than in the general population.
Up to five percent of positive rheumatoid factor can be present in healthy patients whereas it increases by up to 15 percent in individuals over the age of 60. It is widely accepted that the erythrocyte sedimentation rate and C-reactive protein are useful in the evaluation and treatment of the disease.
Despite the widely known benefits of exercise in patients with RA, more than half of sufferers older than 65 years remain sedentary. This shows how this therapeutic solution is underutilized. It is necessary to give greater importance to physical exercise, rehabilitation, and patient education. In addition, it is recommended that elderly patients start treatment early and aggressively with the aim of reducing clinical and radiological progression, which can lead to disability.
This condition entails the involuntary loss of skeletal muscle mass due to aging. It contributes significantly to the disability and the loss of independence in elderly patients. Muscle mass declines between three and eight percent every ten years from the age of 30 years and this rate accelerate after 60 years. In turn, the decrease in muscle mass leads to a reduction in strength and muscle function.
Sarcopenia increases the risk of falls and injuries. Consequently, it may cause functional dependence and disability. Hospitalization following a fall often results in more muscle atrophy due to disuse. The complications associated with a fall are the sixth cause of death in people over 65 years. For this reason, sarcopenia is a major health issue for frail elderly persons.
These changes have been linked to greater insulin resistance in the elderly. This can lead to type 2 diabetes mellitus, obesity, dyslipidemia and arterial hypertension in the genetically susceptible population.
Fibromyalgia is a chronic rheumatic process that is characterized by generalized musculoskeletal pain and fatigue. The cause is unknown, however, some factors, such as infections (viral or bacterial), involvement in accidents that produce a cervical lesion could trigger the development of fibromyalgia. The same applies to rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and hypothyroidism.
As a result, pain receptors are chronically activated. On the other hand, a decrease in serotonin and an increase in substance P (acts as a neurotransmitter and modulator), both of which regulate pain have been observed in many patients.
Pain and stiffness may manifest throughout the body or may be restricted to certain points. Pain that spreads throughout the body is more frequent in women than in men and fatigue may be mild in some patients and severe in others. The diagnosis is conducted through a questionnaire designed to establish the history and symptoms of the patient.
Causes of musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs)
Causes of musculoskeletal complications in the elderly are wide-ranging. MSDs can reveal underlying neurological or rare muscle diseases. Lifestyle habits like excessive alcohol consumption and smoking are key risk factors. The same applies to obesity, which accounts for a significant number of new cases. Medical practitioners also link orthopedic issues to poor rest and recovery, family history, inadequate hydration, poor nutrition and lack of exercise.
Musculoskeletal diseases can be caused by repeated and prolonged use of certain joints that produce lesions in the nerves, tendons, muscles, and ligaments of the upper and lower limbs as well as the back. They result in pain, illness and functional discomfort.
Prevention of age-related orthopedic complications
Individuals can prevent musculoskeletal complications by adopting healthy lifestyles. Exercise plays an important role in keeping the bones healthy. Joint warming is used to prevent injury and inflammation through gradual and adaptive activity. Strengthening muscles involved in daily movements makes them more resistant to injury with the aim to avoid trauma.
These efforts can reduce the risk of MSDs and improve the quality of life. Physical activity like jogging is an inexpensive prevention device that does not require equipment.
The objective of treatment is the remission of the disease. Medical intervention seeks to control the clinical manifestations to prevent structural damage and preserve joint function, thus reducing associated morbidity and functional compromise. Excessive caution should be exercised in the administration of drugs.
Most MSDs are treated with drugs adapted to each case by the physician. The prescription of analgesics and anti-inflammatory medications is often necessary.
Two types of drugs are used: nonspecific analgesics, such as paracetamol and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDs (like ibuprofen, ketoprofen) in addition to aspirin. These drugs must be used separately. Anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and aspirin should never be combined. For improved effectiveness, take medication as soon as possible, ideally from the beginning of the pain.
If you are taking medication without a prescription, use the following tips.
Do not exceed the maximum daily allowable dose. In addition, follow the dosage (amount and frequency) recommended by the leaflet and the minimum interval between two doses. An overdose could have adverse effects on your health (toxicity) and lead to addiction to the product.
For the same reasons, unless otherwise advised, avoid combining or alternating analgesics of different compositions. Do not use a drug if you have any of the contraindications listed in the package leaflet.
Additional treatment options for musculoskeletal conditions include therapeutic solutions. These include orthotic immobilization of the painful joint to put the joint at rest. Physicians may use corticosteroids by injecting a drug derived from cortisone into the painful joint. In some cases, patients will find relief through massage, physiotherapy or rehabilitation. In extreme cases, surgical procedures like carpal tunnel surgery are considered.
The best way to treat pain is to correct its cause since diseases that affect older people may be different from those that appear in younger people. Additionally, the response to drugs also varies. This variability has to do with the complexity that age adds to the drug’s mechanisms of action.
The use of non-steroidal anti-inflammation drugs should be treated with caution taking into account their gastrointestinal adverse effects.
Many survivors of the Holocaust from South Florida met up recently, for an afternoon of dancing at the biannual Café Europa event, which was held in Boca Raton at the B’nai Torah Congregation.
Several hundred volunteers and staff members, who represent the Boca Raton based Ruth and Norman Rales Jewish Family Services, arranged the meeting that attracted 500 former Concentration Camp prisoners and their families, according to Danielle Hartman – the CEO of RJFS.
“We are happy to be able to arrange some entertainment for survivors of the Holoaust, with the help of our volunteers. It’s lovely to witness the meeting of survivors, who enjoy celebrating their lives with each other” said Hartman, when welcoming her guests to the event.
Lots of the Holocaust survivors wanted to connect with people who were from the same country as them. To facilitate this, labels were placed on the tables displaying the names of different countries, so survivors could easily dine and socialize together.
The countries that appeared on these labels included France, Austria, Italy, Hungary, Lithuania, Latvia and Poland — to name a few.
Numerous survivors originated from Delray Beach and Boca Raton, as well as towns in North Broward County and North Palm Beach County.
The parking lot for the congregation was completely packed. This included a number of buses that drove guests to the event. The Holocaust survivors who used these buses live in retirement villages, like King’s Point and Century Village in Delray Beach and Boca Raton respectively.
Many of the guests were pleasantly surprised, upon their first meeting with survivors from the same city as them.
“It was nice to meet Rosalyn Gross. She comes from the small Hungarian town I grew up in during the forties. I am astounded and so pleased to meet a survivor from my place of birth, after such a long time” said ninety-year-old former Nazi prisoner Lily Segelstin.
As well as enjoying the food, dancing, and trip down memory lane, the Holocaust survivors appreciated the work of the volunteers, who were happy to serve them.
“There’s such a good feeling you get when you give back to these people. The event is not a sad occasion. Instead, it is an opportunity to celebrate life in style” said Carol White from Delray Beach – a Café Europa volunteer.
Over the past sixteen years, Jill Viner — a Miami based philanthropist — has sponsored Café Europa, since the event’s creation in 2001.
Viner said: “It’s always lovely visiting Café Europa and seeing all the guest’s happy faces. It makes me feel extremely blessed. When my mum arrived in America alone, she didn’t know whether she would get to see her mother and father again. Fortunately, my mum’s parents managed to reunite when she was fifteen. This is why I wish to carry on being the sponsor of Café Europa”.
Viner provides funding to Café Europa to pay for the event that is held in December. In June, Rales Jewish Family Services arranges the same event at Café Europa as well.
“We appreciate how important it is for survivors of the Holocaust to be able to socialize, so we are glad to organize Café Europa two times each year,” said Hartman
You can get more information about Café Europa by calling Ruth and Norman Rales Jewish Family Services on 561-852-3333, or visiting their website www.ralesjfs.org.
Florida offers a wide range of lifestyle options without the heavy financial burdens associated with owning a holiday home, which makes it a safe haven for both retirees and snowbirds alike. In fact, according to official estimates, more than 550,000 snowbirds take up temporary residence in the Sunshine State each year, pumping billions of dollars into the state’s economy. In Broward County alone, for example, tourists spend about $1 billion every year, according to figures from the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention and Visitors Bureau. Some of the things that make Florida such a popular tourist destination, especially among retirees and snowbirds, include wonderfully warm weather year round, a long coastline with miles and miles of breezy coastal beaches, and favorable asset and tax protection laws. In fact, Florida is among the seven no-income states in the US. At this point, it is also worth noting that Florida is the flattest state in the US, rising to 345 feet at its highest point (Britton Hill). Simply put, most of the state is largely flat with a rolling landscape, which makes the Sunshine State a great destination for a relaxing vacation. With that in mind, here are some fun activities and events for snowbirds this winter in Palm Beach County and Broward County, FL.
Visit Downtown West Palm
If love murals and art in general, visit Downtown West Palm and enjoy more than 20 murals courtesy of the Canvas Outdoor Museum Show, which has transformed this part of Palm Beach into a colorful, artsy and quirky town. In case you want to grab something to eat, the many outdoor cafes in the area offer a variety of local delicacies. Alternatively, you can join the one-mile West Palm Beach Food Tour. With 13 generous tastings from some of the best local restaurants, the food tour offers the perfect opportunity to sample and savor the flavor of West Palm Beach. The tour is also an opportunity to learn interesting things about West Palm Beach including its culture, architecture and history.
Owned by the Florida Power & Light Company, the Manatee Lagoon is essentially a 16-000-square-foot educational center with a dedicated observation deck for viewing unique and endangered marine mammals called manatees (sea cows) up close, especially in cold winter days when manatee herbs tend to bask in the warm-water outflows from the Riviera Beach Next Generation Clean Energy Center. Additionally, the center features hands-on and engaging exhibits for visitors to learn all about manatees, as well as the natural attractions of the surrounding Lake Worth Lagoon.
The Manatee Lagoon is open year-round Tuesday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. There is no entrance fee to the center and free parking is available as well. Additionally, “Manatee Masters,” who are essentially students from the Florida Atlantic University, are available to give free tours to all guests. Other notable amenities at the facility include a picnic area and pavilion, manatee webcam, an on-site café, and a gift shop selling manatee-themed merchandise.
Loggerhead Marinelife Center
Established in 1983 in Loggerhead Park, Juno Beach, FL, the Loggerhead Marinelife Center is essentially a nonprofit organization that promotes the preservation of ocean ecosystems with a special focus on endangered and threatened sea turtles. Its facilities include a research laboratory, a sea turtle hospital, and exhibit areas. Additionally, the center has a gift shop that sells unique, marine-themed products including, among others, jewelry, apparel, home decor artwork, stationery and toys. What’s more, you can adopt a sea turtle patient as a gift. The center does not charge an admission fee, but there is a suggested donation of $5 per visitor to help support the organization. The center offers free parking as well.
In addition to rescuing and rehabilitating sea turtles, the Loggerhead Marinelife Center also hosts various programs and fun activities including a marine summer camp program, Eco Tours (SWIM), guided beach walks, astronomy nights, hatchling releases and sea turtle releases, among others.
Visit West Palm Beach’s Greenmarket
Recently, Cooking Light Magazine awarded West Palm Beach’s GreenMarket the “Best in the State,” citing the waterfront location, pooch friendly vibe, live entertainment and the diversity of vendors. With fresh tropical plants and produce, farm-fresh foods and ethnic eateries, this particular GreenMarket is a feast for your senses. Of course, similar to other farmers’ markets, free samples abound. The market is open from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., every Saturday, October through April. If you require parking, free parking is available in the Evernia Street garage and Banyan Street garage.
Art Palm Beach
Founded in 1997 in West Palm Beach, Art Palm Beach is now the biggest art event in the Palm Beaches not only in terms of square footage, but also in terms of attendance and the total sales conducted by its exhibitors. What’s more, Art Palm Beach is now an international event, attracting tens of international galleries and artists. In terms of skill level, the artists range from contemporary to emerging to modern masters. The event offers a great opportunity to view works of art of the 20th and 21st centuries. Art work exhibited includes photography, painting, design, fine art glass, sculpture, and video. In recent years, new technologies, art installations, video and performance art have become increasingly popular at the event, offering collectors exposure to today’s emerging art trends.
Snorkeling and Scuba Diving in Fort Lauderdale
Located in Broward County, Fort Lauderdale is a great snorkeling and scuba diving destination due to various reasons. For starters, Broward County experiences relatively high temperatures throughout the year, ranging between 72 and 80 degrees. Because of this, the water in the county is warm all year round, meaning you can scuba dive as deep as you wish without necessarily have to worry about cold temperatures. Secondly, to enhance the snorkeling experience, Broward County has placed more than 75 artificial reefs on the floor of the ocean. For example, just off the sands of Pompano Beach, a 324-foot tanker has been sunk to form the closest artificial reef to shore in the county. The cornerstone of the ship has been designed to look like a cartoonish “underwater casino” with, among other features, slot machine sculptures, a mermaid cocktail waitress, and statues of sharks playing poker. Known as Pompano’s Shipwreck Park, the ship sits at a depth of over 100 feet, meaning you need to be an experienced diver to get to it. While the artificial reefs enhance the diving experience, it is important to note that Fort Lauderdale is, in fact, one of the few regions in America where you can snorkel or scuba dive on a living coral reef.
Visit the Everglades National Park
Spread over 2400 square miles, the Everglades National Park is among the top three largest national parks in the lower 48 states. The park offers different activities for visitors to enjoy. These activities include kayaking, fresh and saltwater fishing, bird watching, camping, biking, and hiking, among others. In addition to these activities, you can also take a boat tour to explore the Florida Bay or take a tram ride right through the heart of the Shark Valley.
Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge
Established in 1951 under the Migratory Bird Conservation Act, the Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge is essentially a 147,392-acre wildlife sanctuary located of Boynton Beach. Consisting of the most northern remnant of the historic Everglades wetland ecosystem, the sanctuary is home to native wildlife and fish populations, including endangered species. The park is also home to alligators, raccoons, deer, otters, bobcats, as well as different species of indigenous plants and insects. The sanctuary allows multiple recreational activities in the park including hunting, hiking, and fishing. Additionally, it offers guided tours.
Visit the Hollywood Broadwalk
For a beach town experience, visit the Hollywood Broadwalk. The restaurants, shops, and bars in this area offer an affordable beachfront dining with inexpensive tacos, pizzas, and gyros aplenty. The Hollywood Broadwalk is a popular winter holiday destination for different types of visitors including retirees and families of snowbirds.
Visit the Broward Center for Performing Arts
If you enjoy performing arts, visit the Broward Center for the Performing Arts and enjoy touring productions of big Broadway shows as well as lesser-known works by local productions. It is worth noting that the Broward Center for Performing Arts is one of the best-attended performing arts centers in America.
Visit Antique Car Museums
Greater Ft. Lauderdale is home two classic car museums. The Berliner Cars in Davie exhibits classic cars from the 1940s to 1970s, including vintage Corvettes, Chevy Bel Airs, and Packard convertibles. Many of the cars on display at this museum are for sale. On the other hand, the antique car museum at Fort Lauderdale exhibits Packards, dating as far back as 1909, but does not sell any item in its collection.
West Palm Beach and Broward County are among the top holiday destinations for snowbirds and retirees alike. Some of the things that snowbirds and retirees can enjoy in these two towns include warm weather year round, breezy beaches, marine parks, national parks, myriad holiday activities and art. Additionally, the Sunshine state has favorable asset and tax protection laws.
If you’re looking for beautiful beaches, interested in the outdoors or want to experience a lively culture, is no better place than Boca Raton. Boca Raton has a variety of attractions, events, shopping and dining facilities to choose from. Is it any wonder that snowbirds keep coming back for fun under the South Florida sun year after year. During the next visit to the Palm Beaches, here are 10 popular attractions that you can enjoy.
1. Mizner Park
Commonly known as Boca Raton’s dining, shopping and entertainment destination, Mizner Park will keep you entertained for hours. Art enthusiasts can enjoy a concert at the Mizner Park Amphitheater, while shopaholics can take a stroll through the Plaza which contains high-level luxury choices such as renowned jewelers, national retailers, boutiques and 16 of the finest restaurants offering a flavorful gastronomic experience.
2. Gumbo Limbo Nature Center
If you’re into sea turtle themed activities and would like to explore the child in you, then this is the perfect place for you. Experience fun-filled summer camps, hatching release observations, turtle walks, and free outdoor Marine feedings just to name a few of the activities that you can participate in. Although admission is free, it is recommended that you donate at least five dollars per person when attending.
3. Red Reef Park
A favorite haunt for a variety of small birds, Red Reef Park is heavily foliaged, secluded and a great spot for those looking to capture images of larger, more spectacular birds. Some of the popular activities here include snorkeling at the parks South end, surf fishing and of course taking pictures of the birds in the ocean or side of the park. It also has a wonderful picnic area that’s fully equipped with tables, grills, and restrooms.
4. Sugar Sand Park
Sugar Sand Park is one of those places that can either ignite your creativity, inspire you or challenge you both physically and mentally. there is definitely no shortage of thrilling experiences waiting for you here. There’s a children’s science explorium and if you plan on taking the grandkids along, then introduce them to this fantastic world of science, see a show up close and personal at the Willow theater or take a spin around the carousel. The science playground also promises to be fun for all ages. The Sugar Sand Park also contains two nature trails that allow you to walk in the wilderness.
5. Daggerwing Nature Center
The Daggerwing Nature Center consists of the 3000 ft.² exhibit hall with live animals as well as cutting-edge exhibits, classroom facilities, reading area, laboratory, lobby, and an elevated boardwalk. Not to mention that it is within the beautiful confines of the Burt Aaronson South County Regional Park. When exploring the boardwalk you will notice two trails as well as bench style seating available. There is also an observation tower so you can view the abundant animal and plant life, including woodpeckers, butterflies, Osprey, and endangered wood storks, alligators as well as a variety of bromeliads.
6. The Breakers Palm Beach
Snowbirds definitely need suitable accommodation while taking in all of the sights and sounds that Boca Raton has to offer. The Breakers Palm Beach is one of the most luxurious and top-notch accommodation services available. If you’re looking to escape into another world, which most snowbirds look forward to, then this is the destination for you. The Breakers Palm Beach contains nine restaurants, from the Flagler Steakhouse to the Beach club restaurant, four swimming pools beautiful bungalows, elegant suites, and private beach access. A variety of water sports await those adventure seekers as well as a 20 000 ft.² indoor and outdoor spa only available to guests of the hotel.
7. The Costume Museum at the Wick Theatre.
If you’d like to view the finest exhibits of the most astounding costumes ever brought to the Broadway stage by the most respected designers in the history of the American musical theater, then the costume Museum at the Wick Theatre is where you need to be. They host a collection of 50 Broadway productions and revivals. There are a variety of things to do here such as theater shows, tours, Cabaret as well as eating your heart out at the elegant tavern room. Museum luncheons and tours start at $40.
8. The Town Center at Boca Raton
The Town at Boca Raton features 220 stores as well as six department stores and with these astounding figures, it is no wonder why people come from all over the world to explore it. Here you can purchase from a variety of well-known designers and manufacturers such as Apple, Bvlgari, Burberry, Cartier, Louis Vuitton as well as Tiffany and co-. It is situated at 6000 Glades Rd., Suite 200, Boca Raton, FL.
9. The FAU Stadium
If you are into sports, and the Florida Atlantic University Stadium is just for you. It consists of a whopping 30,000 seats, 32 boxes and 24 luxury suites. It is also home to the annual Boca Dayton bowl as well as the Florida launch professional lacrosse team. They have also hosted a variety of other major sporting events and is the only stadium in the country that has a view of the Atlantic Ocean.
10. The Boca Raton Art Museum
This museum attracts more than 200,000 visitors a year who come to view its galleries and programs. The 44,000 square-foot facility is also a leading institution of culture in South Florida and has achieved worldwide recognition for its state-of-the-art changing exhibitions and unique permanent collection. Here you can find anything from artist presentations and family activities to 100 classes per week at the studio Art school. If you plan on taking the grandchildren along, the admission fee is free for children under 12 and students provided they produce their ID. Adults will pay $12 for entry.
11. The Flagler Museum
For seniors who are history buffs, the Flagler Museum is one of Palm Beaches iconic landmarks. It’s also an astounding representation of Florida’s grand history. This mansion contains 75 rooms and was built as a wedding present by Henry Morrison Flagler for his wife. If you’re looking forward to some of the luxuries of the gilded age, you definitely need to visit this historic mansion at the Flagler Museum.
Boca Raton. snowbirds looking for a bit of exercise can enjoy a climb to the top of the 108 foot Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse and Museum. This lighthouse offers panoramic views of Jupiter’s Intracoastal waterways as well as the nearby Martin County’s Jupiter Island. With 105 steps to the top, it guarantees to be a workout. You can also enjoy guided tours, a gift shop, a museum gallery and then relax at the outdoor picnic area and enjoy special events.
Boca Raton has a variety of different activities, events and things to do for seniors and retirees alike. So why not leave the snow shoveling behind and make your way to the sunny and inviting Boca Raton lifestyle. So the best piece of advice that you can take is looking forward to meeting other snowbirds and also prepare yourself for a fun-filled itinerary and enjoy every moment that this beautiful place offers you.
The dietary needs of people alter as they age, and though medical experts recommend people to rely on natural food substances for maximum nutrients, it just doesn’t work at times. The body changes during years of seniority (above 60) and become less efficient at extracting enough nutrients from the food. This makes it imperative to supplement natural food with man-made preparations.
During Your Sixties
As per American Geriatrics Society Journal, even the slightest of vitamin B12 deficiencies may present dementia risks for senior adults. The acids within the gut become less competent at extracting food-related vitamin B12 after 50s, making it important to keep a constant check on vitamin B12 levels and also add in supplements, if needed.
Beef liver, clams, cheeseburger, trout, and sirloin are some good sources of vitamin B12.
As far as natural omega-3 fatty acids are concerned, DHA is plentiful within the cell membranes of the brain. Over the last ten years, studies have been linking brain benefits to the presence of these fatty acids – right from enhanced flow of blood and increased brain cell growth to lesser mood swings and stronger memory. With age, unfortunately, the cells’ ability to intake DHA diminishes gradually, leaving the mind malnourished and negatively influencing both memory retention and brain function.
Ideal dosage: EPA and DHA – 1000 milligrams per day.
Food sources: Salmon, flaxseed oil, edamame, and walnuts.
For many years, scientists believed the primary or the only objective of vitamin D was to assist with calcium absorption from food substances. Recent research studies reveal vitamin D can also bring down recurring pain, heart issues, and even eliminate cancer. Sunlight is the most natural and recommended vitamin D source. Aging reduces one’s ability to harvest the vitamin D benefits of sunlight, making supplement dosages imperative.
Recommended dosage: 600 global units every day. Go for supplements rich in vitamin D3, a form of the active vitamin that’s more potent than vitamin D2.
As for natural food sources of this vitamin, mackerel, tuna, cheese, beef liver, egg yolks offer aplenty.
During Your Seventies
As noted previously, even the mildest of vitamin B12 deficiencies would put senior adults susceptible to dementia. However, the acid needed to absorb food-based vitamin B12 in the stomach plummets with age. According to the Institute of Medicine, vitamin B12 is critical for the sound functioning of the human brain, and adults who are more than 50 years of age will have to resort to B12 supplements. The recommended dosage is 2.4 micrograms per day.
Beef liver, clams, cheeseburger, trout, and sirloin are good sources of food.
Vitamin D is important during 70s, to offer protection against infection and illness. You guessed it right; sunlight offers this vitamin in abundant quantity. However, with age, the body becomes less capable of making optimal use of this freely available vitamin, forcing people to resort to other sources. The prescribed dosage is usually 800 global units every day. Look for Vitamin D3-containing supplements – the vitamin is a more effective variant of vitamin D when compared to vitamin D2. Good food sources of the vitamin comprise mackerel, tuna, beef liver, egg yolks, and cheese.
Many health issues are likely to crop up during 70s; the inability to build muscle is one. In addition, protein requirements go up with age. Once close to 10 percent of the muscle mass is lost, the body’s immune system becomes less efficient. Thankfully, protein pills or powders are there for the rescue if natural diet options falter. The recommended dose being 20 – 30 grams of whey protein mixed with a regular shake.
Beef, beans, chicken, almonds are good sources of natural protein.
The media tells us that the economy has recovered from the 2008 recession, and it has of course – for anyone with a large stock portfolio, but the relief has not come for everyone.
In America, 1 in 5 children still goes to sleep hungry and many seniors without pensions and surviving on only a meager Social Security check are forced to choose between medication and their proverbial can of cat food.
Clearly, not everyone in America is doing well. Not everyone is well fed. And that’s where The Jacobson Family Food Pantry comes in.
The Jacobson Family Food Pantry, a program of the Ruth and Norman Rales Jewish Family Services, provides 120,000 pounds of food to the hungry every year.
Boca Home Care Inc is aiding this important charitable enterprise by allowing collections of food items in their Boca Home Care Services office at 4700 NW 2nd Ave, (4th Floor) Boca Raton, Fl 33431
Please bring any of the following items you can spare:
• Peanut butter
• Canned fruit
• Tomato sauce
• Canned vegetables
• Vegetarian beans
• Instant mashed potatoes
Please drop off what you can during business hours, or call:
Boca Home Care Services: 561-989-0611
Julie Weisberg, JFS Food Pantry Outreach Coordinator: 561- 852-3333