Monthly Archives: September 2015

Best steps to plan for health costs in retirement

This expert says pre-retirees need to rethink the way they save and invest

By Peter Stahl for Next Avenue


Photo credit: Thinkstock

There is great concern among pre-retirees regarding the scope and cost of their health care during their retirement years. Anxiety leads to action, so as we consider the convergence of health care and financial planning, let’s take a look at the most important steps to take.

7 things you should be doing for your bones now

Half of us over 50 will have weak bones by 2020 unless we make changes

By Rhoda Fukushima for Next Avenue


Photo credit: Thinkstock

When registered dietitian Toby Smithson gave presentations on bone health, she’d bring three bags of flour, each with a different amount. One bag represented osteoporosis. Another bag represented osteopenia, or bone whose density is lower than normal but not enough to be classified as osteoporosis. The third bag represented normal bone.

“You could see the flour and feel the heaviness and density,” said Smithson, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. “Osteoporosis was the lightest bag.” read more

Cards that offer better words for serious illness

Their cancer-survivor maker knows the pain of kind but hurtful sentiments

By Emily Gurnon for Next Avenue


If you have ever had cancer or another serious illness, you can probably make a long list of unhelpful things that friends, family and well-meaning acquaintances have said to you.

“Everything happens for a reason.”

“I read about this miraculous new treatment on the Internet!”

“Oh, I knew someone who had that same thing and they died.”

Emily McDowell, a cancer survivor, has heard them all. In response, the Los Angeles graphic designer came up with a set of eight “Empathy Cards” to be used when traditional “get well” cards just don’t work. She launched them May 2015. Another set is due out in December 2015, she told NPR’s Ina Jaffe in an interview. read more

How to create meaning in dementia care

Everyone deserves to feel needed and have a sense of purpose

By Mike Good for Next Avenue

Photo credit: iStock

Photo credit: iStock

One of the most important things to a caregiver of someone with Alzheimer’s is to know their loved one is happy. However, they are often so overwhelmed by the responsibility of caregiving, that the fun of being together is lost.

All engagement tends to be for survival and not for enrichment. This often results in a negative atmosphere affecting the mood of everyone, including the person with Alzheimer’s. Left unchecked, the resulting tensions will often lead to behavioral issues from both individuals. read more

Smith elected to LeadingAge Missouri board

Smith_Dawn-blogDawn Smith, executive director at Fulton Presbyterian Manor, was recently elected to the board of directors for LeadingAge Missouri. She began her three-year term in September.

LeadingAge Missouri is a partner of the LeadingAge, a national association of 6,000 not-for-profit organizations dedicated to expanding the world of possibilities for aging. Together, LeadingAge members advance policies, promote practices and conduct research that supports, enables and empowers people to live as fully as they can. read more

Why Boomers need to get tested for Hepatitis C

People over 50 make up the majority of those with the deadly disease

By Emily Gurnon for Next Avenue


Photo credit: iStock

Most of the people who get hepatitis C today are intravenous drug users who share needles. That may be the image that comes to mind when you think of the disease.

But decades ago, before widespread screening of the blood supply began in 1992, individuals who received blood transfusions or organ transplants were at risk of coming in contact with the virus. Transmission was common this way, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

Once in the body, hepatitis C stays there for about 70 percent of sufferers, according to Dr. John Ward, director of the CDC’s Division of Viral Hepatitis. read more

Why even adults need heroes

Superman and young athletes don’t do it for us anymore

By Richard Chin for Next Avenue

Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Credit: Thinkstockasdf

It was easy to have a hero when I was young.

Heroes could be anyone older, wiser and more accomplished, and when you’re a kid, that could be pretty much anyone.

Growing up in the 1960s, if you asked me to name those I most admired, I probably would have answered NFL quarterback Bart Starr or baseball great Mickey Mantle. If you asked me to name a hero who wasn’t a professional athlete, I probably would have come up with Charles Lindbergh.

Now, however, it’s harder for me to say who my heroes are. read more