Get Vaccinated

It's that time of year again. The dreaded flu season. Influenza (also known as the flu) is a respiratory illness that can be severe and life threatening. Adults 65 years or older have a weaker immune system and produce fewer antibodies which makes it harder to fight diseases. Individuals with other health issues can be in trouble as those conditions can worsen as a result of the flu.  One thing you can do to maintain your health is get a flu shot. It's important for older adults to know how serious this virus can be and the options that they have. 

Flu shots are available at pharmacies, CVS and Rite Aid for example, retail stores, clinics, and many other places. Find somewhere that is close and convenient for you. It is best to get the flu shot by the end of October but they are still offered all the way till January and will still be effective. 

There is a High Dose Flu Vaccine specifically for adults over the age of 65. It is made to help those with weak immune systems and will create more antibodies. This vaccine strengthens the body's response against the flu and it contains 4 times the amount of antigen compared to a regular flu shot. 

Prevention starts with getting a flu shot. If you have questions ask your doctor or local pharmacy! 

Sources :https://www.ncoa.org
https://www.cdc.gov

Healthy aging month

September is healthy aging month! This month is dedicated to celebrating life and helping you gain a positive outlook on getting older rather than focusing on the negative aspects! It's not too late to find new passions or hobbies that you enjoy doing. It's time to reinvent yourself!
Think about when you were younger and your best years. What did you like to do? What were you interests? Even though you are getting older you can still do the things you love. You can even find new activities. Do what brings you happiness and don't let anyone stop you!

Here are some things to help make aging a positive experience....

Stay physically active: It's important to get exercise as it will strengthen your bones, muscles, and joints. Going for a walk with friends or going for a swim is a good way to get moving. Being physically active will make you feel good and improve your health.
Exercise your brain: Embrace what you love and never stop learning new things. Engage in activities that requires some thinking. Stay alert by doing crossword puzzles, reading, or writing. 
Stay connected: Maintain your relationships with family and friends. Go out and do things you enjoy with the people you care about. You can also volunteer in the community to stay socially engaged. 
Have regular check ups: Take control of your health by making sure you get the appropriate health screenings and take preventative measures. 
Manage your stress: Find ways to cope with your stress and figure out what triggers it. Learn to relax and just go with the flow instead of letting things affect you negatively.

Accept your limitations, but make positive changes and have fun while doing it. 

"Youth is a gift of nature but aging is a work of art."
-Stanislaw Jerry Lec

Source: https://healthyaging.net

 

 

 

Staying Hydrated, Staying Healthy

As the weather gets warmer we need make sure we stay properly hydrated. This heat is in full swing and drinking plenty of fluids is on our agenda. You may not feel dehydrated because throughout the day you are drinking liquids such as coffee, tea, sugary drinks, soda, or alcohol,  but these drinks do not hydrate the body like water does. Even though you don't feel thirsty throughout the day your body is still actually dehydrated. When we age, we are at a greater risk for dehydration because our body water content decreases. This will in turn create greater consequences that can affect our health. 

Let's do some Q&A on the basics of dehydration!

Q: What causes dehydration?
A: Dehydration occurs when the body does not get the adequate amount of water that it needs. Everyday, we lose water through sweating, going to the restroom, tears, and saliva. We then eat foods and drink liquids that contain water but if we do not get enough our body becomes dehydrated. We can also lose water when we are sick if we have a fever, vomit, or have diarrhea. Most of the time, dehydration happens because we are just too busy throughout our day and we don't realize we are thirsty. 

Q: What are the symptoms of dehydration? 
A: The physical signs of dehydration include sticky or dry mouth, dark-colored urine, dizziness, headaches, weakness, rapid heartbeat, lack of energy, sunken eyes, fainting, and feeling thirsty. The hard thing about detecting dehydration is that all these symptoms can also be caused by other health conditions. The best way to see if you are dehydrated is to get a blood test. 

Q: What are the consequences of dehydration?
A: As mentioned above, dehydration can cause weakness and dizziness. These two symptoms can cause falls especially for older adults. Individuals with certain medical conditions such as Alzheimers and Dementia can become more confused if they don't get the proper amount of water. Dehydration can also cause Urinary Tract Infections and make constipation worse. If you continue to be dehydrated it can affect your kidneys and increase your risk of getting kidney stones.

Q: How do we prevent dehydration?
A: One way to prevent dehydration is to balance your fluid intake with the output. If you are sweating or urinating more frequently then your intake of water should increase. If you are sick also make sure you are drinking more liquids throughout the day as your body is losing water more easily. Instead of drinking large amounts of water at once spread it out during your day and drink smaller amounts more frequently. Also, try eating more foods such has fruits and vegetables that are high in water.

Drinking water is an essential part to a healthy lifestyle. 

Sources: http://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/dehydration-adults#1
http://betterhealthwhileaging.net/qa-how-to-prevent-diagnose-treat-dehydration-                         aging-adults/

Aging Matters

Growing older is a natural part of life. As we age, our bodies and minds will slowly change and we will experience major life transformations. During the aging process, it’s important to live active and healthy lives. The quality of our later days depends on our lifestyle choices and how we take care of ourselves. It’s all about increasing our quality of life. Regardless of your age, you can take control and feel your absolute best! 

Tips for a long and healthy life

  1. Exercise on a regular basis
    Being physically active has many health benefits and can decrease your chances of getting a chronic disease. Get moving and do something you enjoy!
  2. Maintain a well-balanced, healthy diet
    It’s important to eat nutrient dense foods. Make half your plate fruits and vegetables and make sure to incorporate whole grains into your diet. Keep in mind the saturated fat, sodium, and added sugars in your foods and beverages. Make your plate colorful and eat foods from every food group. 
  3. Get the right amount of sleep
    Sleep contributes to your health and over all well-being. Lack of sleep in older adults can cause depression, irritability, and increase one’s risk of falling. It’s important to stay on a routine and get the recommended amount of 7 hours each night. 
  4. Foster your relationships
    It’s important to stay in contact with family and friends. Being isolated can cause depression and loneliness. Also, keeping active in the community is a good way to stay busy and make new friends. 
  5. Prevent illnesses
    Everyone should practice prevention by getting recommended screenings and familiarizing themselves about different conditions. We need to take charge of our own health. 

It’s time to take charge of your health and become a healthier you. Extend your quality of life and the adventures that come with it!

Source: http://www.officeonaging.ocgov.com

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