“HALIFAX, N.S. — New research is further revealing that the risk of developing dementia can be substantially reduced by leading a healthier lifestyle, including cutting down on drinking, head injuries and exposure to air pollution.
The details are in a new report published in The Lancet medical journal.
Dr. Kenneth Rockwood, professor in Dalhousie University’s department of medicine, specializes in geriatrics, frailty and dementia. He is part of the Lancet’s Commission on dementia prevention, intervention and cure, which includes 28 international experts in the field.
Rockwood, who’s been studying dementia since 1979, said early perceptions that you can’t prevent it no longer hold.
“Yes, there is a genetic predisposition in a lot of people,” he said, adding that the extent of that risk varies. “But we also know there’s a lot of people who develop dementia in late life who don’t have, apparently, a genetic predisposition, so they’re getting it on some other grounds. And the other grounds on which they’re getting it includes a number of things that we can actually help with.”
He cited high blood pressure, diabetes, lack of exercise and being sedentary as significant examples.
The Lancet commission, which has been meeting since 2016, compiled a report with nine risk factors in 2017. Those included less education, hypertension, hearing impairment, smoking, obesity, depression, physical inactivity, diabetes, and low social contact.
“So we have a body of work now showing that the degree of frailty increases the risk, not just you’ll get those abnormal proteins, but that those abnormal proteins will be expressed in you as clinically detectable dementia.”
– Geriatrics specialist Ken Rockwood
This year, three more risk factors were identified: excessive alcohol consumption, traumatic brain injury, and air pollution, according to the article, which can be found online through this link. “
Read the full article here: https://www.journalpioneer.com/news/canada/research-shows-healthy-lifestyle-can-reduce-dementia-risk-480477/
“The signs of physical abuse among elderly people can be challenging for health care professionals to recognize, resulting in as few as one in 24 cases being reported to authorities. However, a new study in Annals of Emergency Medicine explores injury patterns and characteristics to help experts spot key differences between abuse and unintentional injury.
“The first place that many vulnerable older patients turn for care is the emergency department,” said lead study author Tony Rosen, MD, MPH, FACEP, assistant professor of emergency medicine at Weill Cornell Medicine and director of the Vulnerable Elder Protection Team based at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center’s emergency department. “Emergency physicians have a unique opportunity to identify the ‘red flags’ for elder abuse. Improving the ability to recognize, treat, and prevent these incidents can improve the lives of millions of older patients.”
The study, “Identifying Injury Patterns Associated with Physical Elder Abuse: Analysis of Legally Adjudicated Cases,” compares 78 physical abuse cases with visible injuries among patients aged 60 or older with 78 patients of similar age and sex who visited a New York City emergency department for an unintentional fall between 2001-2014.
Abuse-related injuries are frequently attributed to an unintentional fall, the authors note. By comparing a group of patients injured by an unintentional fall with medical and legal records of prosecuted abuse cases, the study reveals several distinct injury patterns:
- Victims of abuse often have head or neck injuries without visible harm to other parts of the body. Abuse victims are more likely than patients who fall to have injuries on the face, head and neck area (67 percent versus 28 percent).
- Abuse victims are less likely than patients who fall to have scrapes, fractures or injuries below the waist (8 percent versus 50 percent).
- Facial injuries to the left cheek are frequent (22 percent) in abuse cases; a finding that confirms that abusers tend to be right-handed, the authors note.
- Neck injuries raise suspicions of abuse because the neck is often protected by the head or the face during an unintentional fall. Among more than 800 examined injuries, researchers found neck injuries and ear injuries resulted from abuse rather than a fall (15 percent versus 0 percent for neck injuries and 6 percent versus 0 percent for ear injuries). “
“Anyone helping a loved one deal with health matters during the current COVID-19 pandemic certainly knows that we are in uncharted territory, at least in recent times. If your loved one is elderly, the situation is even more complicated.
I can relate. Our family moved Mom into a memory care facility in early March, on her 88th birthday. A few days later, the facility stopped inside visits. It is tough for everyone, but especially people who are experiencing cognitive issues.
The isolation for the elderly in these settings is very challenging for them, their families and their loved ones. One thing that is beyond dispute is the fact that our elderly are the very highest risk individuals during this pandemic. Somewhere between 40 percent and 50 percent of all COVID-related deaths in the U.S. have occurred in nursing homes or are somehow connected to people in those types of settings. The news can vary with opinions and statistics. Still, reality and common sense lead us to conclude that we need to be continually diligent regarding how we manage interactions with the elderly and those who have riskier medical conditions. That holds true in senior care facilities of all types.
So how do you cope? How do you help a loved one cope?”
Once you’ve chosen the right type of mask and learned about wearing it properly, check out these simple tips for caring for face masks and ensuring you get the best protection possible from them.
Reusing and Cleaning Masks
Depending on the type of mask and its condition, you may be able to clean, store and use it again.
Cloth face masks should be laundered after every wearing. After carefully removing your mask, place it in your washing machine or an enclosed hamper (then wash your hands). Dry your mask in the dryer or by hanging (in sunlight, if possible, see below). If your cloth mask becomes damaged or develops holes or visible stains, discard it.
Disposable masks (dust masks, surgical masks) made of paper are meant to be used once and discarded. However, if you wear one for only a short time and it’s still clean, you may consider wearing it later the same day. Remove the mask carefully (with clean hands, grasping only the loops or ties) and hang it (ideally near a window or in direct sunlight). Make sure it can’t be touched or fall to the ground.
Filtering/respirator masks can’t be cleaned because they have specialized filters that are damaged by chemicals and agitation. To reuse one of these masks, also known as N95 or KN95 masks, use strict clean-hands techniques and store it carefully in a secure place (also in the sun, if you can).
The Power of UV Light
Did you know that the sun can act as a disinfectant? When it comes to drying your cloth mask or airing out a filtering/respirator mask, hanging it in direct sunlight may help sterilize it. However, be aware that only the areas directly exposed to UV rays are affected, and the more time allowed, the better.
Discarding a Mask
When it’s time to dispose of any face mask, think about safety. Remove it with clean hands, place it in an enclosed trash container (not an open wastebasket) and then wash your hands again.
Original article: https://seniornews.com/staying-safe-how-should-i-care-for-my-masks/
“It is not easy to watch as a loved one begins to decline. Many of my clients are just beginning the process when I meet them. They know they can’t do their finances or household chores, but they are hesitant to let it go. Eight times out of 10 I am brought in by another attorney, a Power of Attorney, or trusted friend.
The truth is it’s easier to have a third person do some of the heavy lifting, although I didn’t know that when I navigated through the “senior morass” with Mom and Dad. As a consequence, we had moments where they weren’t very happy with me. The same thing has happened with clients – my wonderful 87-year-old fought me tooth and nail when I told her she had to move from her home of 50 years to an Assisted Living Center. She’s now been there 11 months and, other than being lonely because of the lockdown, has regained her feistiness and love of song. PHEW!
If you choose to do it yourself here are a few tips, with a caveat: Remember, your loved ones are seniors who added value to your life and should be treated with honor and respect. If you don’t feel that way, hire an attorney.
– Pay attention to the basics. Are your loved ones showering regularly? Are they having regular meals? Are they taking their medication on a timely basis? If not, it’s time to make decisions on how to move forward…”
Read the full article here: http://www.islandernews.com/opinion/columnists/carefully-consider-options-when-caring-for-elderly-loved-ones/article_8b5c0da8-c637-11ea-9636-4ff62166bbf7.html