Reduce Your Odds of Dementia

18736195 - multi generation family enjoying meal at homeIf you’re like most people, you shudder at the thought of getting Alzheimer’s, yet you probably are unaware that you may be able to reduce your chances.  According to a recent article in the Los Angeles Times (“Eight things you can do now that might reduce your odds of dementia later”), what is good for the body is good for the brain.  Here are some of the recommendations:  [Read more…]

When the Brain Flickers

Our brain’s functional capacity is amazing, yet it’s often taken for granted until it begins to crumble.  Scientist don’t fully understand dementia or Alzheimer’s – the most common type of dementia – or what causes it.  The main risk factor is age – the older you are the greater your chance of developing Alzheimer’s.  Your genetic make-up can also increase your risk.  Of course, you can’t control your genes and getting older is unavoidable., so what can you do?  [Read more…]

Medicare Out of Pocket Costs

shutterstock_113795536While Medicare generally provides health insurance coverage for those 65 and older, few people are aware of what is not covered by Medicare or how these costs can be quite high.   Medical costs such as dental, vision, hearing, long term care services and other out of pocket expenses are not covered by Medicare.  According to The Commonwealth Fund, Medicare beneficiaries spend on average over $3000 per year on out of pocket costs.  [Read more…]

Why Exercise is the Best Brain Medicine

shutterstock_245396401Nothing protects the brain quite like regular exercise.  Not crossword puzzles, supplements, or medications – exercise beats them all – reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s or cognitive decline by about 35% to 45%.  In a recent Los Angeles Times article (“Why exercise is the best medicine for your brain”), Jennifer Heisz, a cognitive neuroscientist, believes that with regular exercise, “we have control over our dementia risk.”  According to Teresa Liu-Ambrose, director of the Aging, Mobility and Cognitive Neuroscience Laboratory at the University of British Columbia, exercise is “like investing in a retirement fund for the brain.” Also, exercise helps prevent hypertension and diabetes, which are two major risk factors for dementia.  [Read more…]

Seniors Prescribed Too Many Painkillers

42100086 - health care nurse holding elderly lady's hand with caring attitude.The opioid epidemic has been a frequent headline over the past few months including how opioid use impacts veterans and rural communities. A recent article from the Wall Street Journal, discusses how opioid use is also impacting seniors.

As summarized in the article: “according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Americans age 45 to 64 accounted for about 44% of deaths from overdoses in 2013 and 2014. And the proportion of adults 50 and older seeking treatment for opioid addiction has increased dramatically in recent decades.” [Read more…]