Assisted Living Today’s Weekly Roundup

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It’s a season for random acts of kindness, reflecting on the year gone by and sharing time with our loved ones. Remember to take time from your busy routine to visit your elderly friends and relatives in assisted living and nursing facilities. The best gift you can give is your time and attention.

And while Santa is busy at the North Pole, and here at Assisted Living Today, we’re double-checking our lists for noteworthy news and trends. Enjoy!  And let us know of any interesting, relevant news you’ve encountered in the past week.

Weird But True

Just as President Obama won another four years in office, he was honored by scientists at Yale who named a lizard species after him: Obamadon gracillis, generally meaning “straight toothed and slender.” The only drawback? The lizard is already extinct! Read it and other weird but true stories at this week’s NY Post.

Senior Lifestyles

A study conducted by The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice found that seven out of 10 Americans die from chronic disease and, as Americans live longer and longer, many families have no end of life game plan in place. But having a plan, say health care advocates, not only gives patients and their families greater peace of mind, it can save the healthcare system a lot of money. Read more on MSN.

Senior Health

Go 4 Life, from the National Institute on Aging, has a success story to share–just for fun. Grisel, age 60, stays fit by dancing her heart out. Want an idea on how to rejuvenate your exercise plan? Listen to Grisel and turn up the music!

Age in Place offers a good reminder about the elderly and flu season. Chance are you’ve heard the reminders, heard a report on the evening news or noticed the signs at the pharmacy, but in case you’ve ignored it, it’s flu season! Don’t forget to take heed, and follow the recommendations offered by the CDC.

Senior Living

Sometimes it helps to put a face and tag a voice to the issues that many face quietly every day, like adults taking care of their elderly parents with dementia. David Cassidy, one time teenage heartthrob and still a performer on Broadway, is also the spokesperson for the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America and the Alzheimer’s Research & Prevention Foundation. He tours the country talking about his experience caring for his mother who had dementia, reminding people that caregivers are not alone. Read his story.

Trends in Technology

Maybe you’ve heard of Nanotechnology, but how about “nanatechnology?” Check out USA Today’s interactive that highlights where new technology can be placed throughout the house to keep your loved one safe at home. From an online medicine cabinet in your bathroom that links directly to the pharmacy mailbox alerts to let elders know when the mail has arrived, there are all kinds of new gadgets in the works to make homes not only smart, but brilliant.

Assisted Living Today’s Weekly Roundup


With black Friday and cyber Monday just past, you may have been spending a lot of time online shopping for the holidays. Do you brave the stores or stay in your pajamas with a steaming cup of coffee to shop online?

Here at Assisted Living Today, we’ve stayed away from the shops, and kept to the news and trends for interesting articles and posts from the cyber world. We hope you enjoy, and please let us know of any interesting, relevant news you’ve encountered in the past week.

Senior Lifestyles

You’re never too old to start a business, reports Reuters. One South Carolina grandmother of three proves it with an inspiring solution-turned-business. Searching for a lipstick tube in the bottom of her purse, she began to think of a better way to organize. What came was an idea and, this year, nearly $2 million in revenues from a business she started out of her house.

Senior Health

A new study published in Population Health Management shows that a cancer diagnosis trumps type 2 diabetes when it comes to patients seeking treatment. The study says that people with type 2 diabetes who are diagnosed with cancer ignore the diabetes in favor of treating the cancer. The problem is, uncontrolled high blood pressure can be more detrimental than cancer because it weakens their immune system. Read more on WebProNews.

Looking for a great gift for a caregiver of a loved one with Alzheimer’s? The first of its kind from a major publisher, The Alzheimer’s Prevention Cookbook: Recipes to Boost Brain Health, offers more than 100 brain-boosting recipes rich in the B-complex vitamins, antioxidants, anti-inflammatories, and omega-3s. Read more on abc News.

Senior Living

Revived discussion about the CLASS act, the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports Act, by a gerontology expert who feels the act, which was shelved by the Obama administration in 2011, should be revived. The act supports a voluntary insurance program that offers a range of long-term care benefits. Do you think it should be revived? Read about it on Kaiser Health News.

Trends in Technology

Are you making your lists, checking them twice? Seniors want technology as much as the kids do. The Senior Care Corner blog offers a list of technology gifts for the seniors in your life.

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Assisted Living Today’s Weekly Roundup

Happy Thanksgiving! By now, maybe you’ve loosened your belt buckle or switched to the elastic waistbands. We hope you all had reasons to give thanks, friends or family around the table and a hearty Thanksgiving meal to enjoy.

Here at Assisted Living Today, we’ve come out of our tryptophan coma to search the web for interesting and tasty bites that don’t add calories! We hope you enjoy, and please let us know of any interesting, relevant news you’ve encountered in the past week.

Weird but True

Is it really the L-tryptophan that makes people sleepy after eating a full, hearty holiday meal? The experts on About.com Chemistry take a look at what role the amino acid has on inducing the post-feast lethargy so many people feel. Can you blame the turkey for that long Thanksgiving nap?

Senior Lifestyles

Moving soon? If so, your to-do list is long. Make sure you don’t leave your handling of Medicaid off the list. ElderOptions of Texas offers a comprehensive guide on what to do about Medicaid when you move. Not just for residents of Texas!

Senior Health

A study presented at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) shows that mental activities like reading, writing and playing games can preserve structural integrity in the brains of older people. Maybe not a huge surprise, but worth the reminder. Read and engage your brain at PsychCentral.

Where do you stand on the line between legal and illegal medicinal drugs? Now 18 states across the U.S.have legalized medicinal marijuana. Some say we’re missing out on the vast array of health benefits the plant can offer. Check out this article on AlterNet summarizing the healing power of medicinal marijuana and weigh in if you feel inclined.

Senior Living

An article in CBS Moneywatch summarized why now is a good time to be aging, despite obstacles in the financial system and worries about Medicare and Social Security. Here’s a positive take on growing older in today’s world with a nice reference list for further reading.

Trends in Technology

What’s the next exploding trend? Joseph Prentiss, President of Yankee Electrical Co. in Shrewsbury, Ma., says smart technology is the rage with his company. As more boomers get smartphones and tablets, they’re taking it further to turn their homes into smart homes–controlling heat, garage doors, electronics and more. Read about it on Boston.com.

Assisted Living Today’s Weekly Roundup

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The signs are everywhere, from the Salvation Army bell ringers to the garland in the stores, Christmas is on its way. Hopefully we all take a little time to remember Thanksgiving and count the blessings in our lives. Leave your comments–do you think Thanksgiving is overlooked these days? Have you turned on your holiday tunes?

Here at Assisted Living Today, we’re busy scouring the web for tips and trends that might be of help or interest to you. We hope you enjoy, and please let us know of any interesting, relevant news you’ve encountered this week!

Weird but True

If you use a walker, this story will tell you that it doubles as a defense weapon. A 50 year-old-woman used her walker to defend herself against a home intruder who she thinks was after prescription medicine she had in her purse. In the article on MSN She says, “I was almost helpless. If I didn’t have the walker, I’d have nothing.”

Senior Lifestyles

My Ageing Parents talks about keeping parents in their own homes for as long as possible. Often it’s a crisis that sends us into panic mode over what to do next–a surprise illness or a fall. Consider these tips to avoiding panic mode.

Senior Health

Get your cholesterol tested regularly? Fasting may not be necessary any longer, according to a new Canadian study. Researchers found the blood tests showed similar average total cholesterol and “good” HDL cholesterol readings, in particular, regardless of whether patients had eaten recently or avoided food for more than eight hours, as is typically recommended. Read more on Medicine Plus.

November is National Family Caregiver Month and the American Society on Aging summarizes the impact of family caregivers. More than 65 million people in theUnited States provide care for chronically ill, disabled or aged family members or friends during any given year. Are you one of them?

Senior Living

Are you planning for long-term care costs? Genworth Financial offers an interactive map sharing the median cost of long-term care from state to state. Compare between states or get a general idea of what you can expect in your or your loved one’s area.

Trends in Technology

An article on ABC news highlights assistive technology that helps the elderly age in place, noting that the technology should fit the user’s lifestyle, rather than making the user tailor his or her lifestyle to the technology. Read their top four picks.

Assisted Living Today’s Weekly Roundup

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This past week was one for the history books: the re-election of President Barak Obama and the Dow’s 313-point plunge. Look to hear more about the Affordable Care Act, Dodd-Frank and how we’ll wade through the post-election divide. One thing we’d likely all vote yes on: hurrah to no more political ads!

Here at Assisted Living Today, we’ve assembled relevant clips from things happening around the web. We hope you enjoy, and please let us know of any interesting, relevant news you’ve encountered this week!

Senior Health

EPAP is the Emergency Prescription Assistance Program, activated during emergency situations, like the latest caused by Hurricane Sandy. For individuals living in certain zip codes within New York and New Jersey, the program provides medications and limited durable medical equipment to people with no insurance. Need to know if you or someone you care about is eligible? Check out the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services website.

Sunrise Senior living shared their Ten Warning Signs of Alzheimer’s checklist, a simple guideline for knowing when you might seek help for your loved one if he or she begins to display certain characteristics that may cause concern. A good resource to differentiate general forgetfulness and Alzheimer’s-like memory loss.

Senior Lifestyles

Just what are seniors looking for in post-retirement living communities? The traditional senior living community ranks lower on their lists according to an article on MSN Real Estate. But many cite wanting to age in place or the inability to sell their current property as reasons for staying put instead of finding a community.

Senior Living

Just how much effect will Obama’s win have on the health law? An AARP blog post notes that individual states still have sway over the implementation of the law because the Supreme Court gave them power to reject the expansion of Medicaid. Read more at AARP.

Trends in Technology

Easy to use right out of the box, computers designed specifically for seniors are easier to find these days. The Savvy Senior covers a few computers marketed to older adults based on their simple touch-screen features, large screens, pre-loaded software for senior users and low-vision keyboards. In the market? Start here!

Weird but True

Unexplained itching, rashes or hives? You could be allergic to your cell phone! In a recent study posted on WebMd, researchers tested new and used mobile phones for metals including nickel and cobalt. Check out the list of phones that tested positive.

 

Assisted Living Today’s Weekly Roundup

It seems all eyes were pointed East, as the nation watched Superstorm Sandy bear down on the Eastern coast. In its wake, millions without power, tremendous loss of property, loss of life and rescues up and down the coast. Naturally, the web was abuzz with storm coverage.

Photo credit: NASA handout satellite image taken on October 29, 2012

Many of the stories in our Weekly Roundup are storm-related, with some great information about creating preparedness plans and helping those affected. If you have news to share, let us know!

Senior Lifestyles

The worry and destruction that Hurricane Sandy brought reminds us all of the need for emergency plans, especially for the elderly. Read about how a New Jersey woman who has Alzheimer’s refused to evacuate, and how difficulties arise keeping older patients safe on NBC News.

Also offering information on creating an emergency plan for caregivers and the elderly, Caregiving.com hosted a dementia care expert on their weekly podcast, Your Caregiving Journey, to talk about specific actions to towards emergency preparedness.

Senior Health

During this presidential campaign, Mitt Romney has called for repeal of the 2010 health law while President Barack Obama has vowed to implement it. AARP outlines how health laws for seniors might change depending on who is elected president. Read a clear, complete and objective look at possible changes based on interviews with health policy experts.

The National Council on Aging reported on Twitter this week that Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) income limits have been updated. Check their SNAP Map for your state’s new limits. Assisted Living Today recently reported about senior food insecurity issues and the importance for balanced nutrition. Find it on our blog if you missed it.

Senior Living

The Huffington Post reports on the nursing homes and assisted living facilities in Rockaway Beach that were told not to evacuate before Hurricane Sandy. Happily, there were no nursing home deaths or injuries attributed to the storm, but decisions by officials are sure to spark debate.

In response to the great need post-hurricane, Goodwill has mobilized to help, listing local Goodwill locations plus a comprehensive list of charities that are helping storm victims. Find help, or lend help, depending on your situation.

Trends in Technology

Are you ready to order via tablet on your next outing to your favorite steakhouse? Studies are showing more restaurants are offering technology options to their customers, including table-side touch-screen options for ordering and payment, mobile rewards plans and table-side technology charging stations. Will it affect you? Read about it on Nation’s Restaurant News.

Weird but True

All around the country, people are worried about property values due to the up and down market. In a Clearwater, Fl, neighborhood, however, neighbors are blaming their decreasing values on a foreclosed mansion because of the new residents: a pack of wolves! Read this and more strangely true stories in this week’s NY Post.

Assisted Living Today’s Weekly Roundup

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Halloween isn’t just for kids! A Halloween superstore in Winston-Salem, NC, notes the number of customers in their 60s and 70s this year buying costume supplies. Popular themes include hippie clothes, accessories and other nostalgic items. Do you have a costume picked out for the big day?

Assisted Living Today watches the trends and topics that matter to older adults and caregivers. We hope you find something of interest or just enjoy, and please tell us about any interesting news you’ve heard or read this week!

Weird but True

Do you believe there’s a place where people never die? Ok, that’s extreme, but the New York Times magazine excerpts a piece from National Geographic writer Dan Buettner about places where people live the longest. Read Stamatis Moraitis’s amazing story, and consider relocating!

Senior Lifestyles

Ever heard of the “boomerang” child? Baby boomers are increasingly making room for their adult children in their lives, and in their houses. Do you have a grown child living at home with you? A recent report in Realty Biz News describes the trend of both boomerang children and aging parents moving in with baby boomer parents.

Senior Health

The recent outbreak of spinal meningitis has many people on edge. Those who have received a spinal shot within the last six weeks could be at larger risk and should be monitored, even if no symptoms present, says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Read more on the NY Times well blog.

Senior Living

Check your Assisted Living facility for low-impact yoga classes for seniors, they do exist! A recent article in the Huffington Post connects yoga practice with easing insomnia, a problem that seems to grow in an adult as he or she grows older.

Trends in Technology

Move over dogs, robots could be our next best friend. iRobot co-founder, Rodney Brooks, said this week that “a natural next frontier for Rethink’s human-like robot Baxter would be in care for the elderly.” Will you have a Rethink’s robot bustling around your kitchen soon? Mass High Tech tells more.

MedGaget interviews BeClose president Liddy Manson about her company’s products, including sensors for beds, chairs, doors and toilets, as well as general motion detectors and “panic pendants” for emergency situations. A way for caregivers and elderly patients to “be closer.”

 

Assisted Living Today’s Weekly Roundup

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It’s the time of year that everything is pumpkin flavored! From coffee and doughnuts to candles and potpourri, the taste and smell of spiced pumpkin is everywhere. Did you know there are more than 700 types of gourds grown in the world? Chances are you’re seeing a variety in harvest decorations at assisted living facilities, adorning people’s doorsteps and in stores.

Assisted Living Today has noted some interesting tips, trends and topics buzzing on the web for older adults. We hope you learn something or just enjoy, and please tell us about any interesting news you’ve heard or read this week!

Weird but True

Bring on the insults! British actor and comedian Rowan Atkinson is speaking out about a “creeping culture of censoriousness” which is limiting people’s free expression and free protest. Britain’s The Telegraph reports on Atkinson’s latest pro-insult campaign for change.

Senior Lifestyles

The Social Security Administration announced this week that Social Security retirement benefits will go up 1.7 percent for 62 million Americans, but it may not be enough to offset rising premiums for Medicare. Will the increase help you? Yahoo News reports.

Senior Health

Don’t shrug off sleep apnea! A new study has shown how sleep apnea can lead to other health issues down the road, especially in women. DementiaToday covers how sleep apnea in older women has been linked to dementia.

Senior Living

The earliest uses of pet therapy were documented in the 1860s, and connection between people and animals in regards to improved health are still being studied and hailed today. Alz.org talks about how to bring pet therapy into your life, or the lives of those who could benefit from it.

Trends in Technology

What effects more than 2.5 million people and fetches a good $10 billion each year in healthcare costs? Bedsores! Newly developed “Smart-e-pants” electric underwear help prevent bedsores through electric shock. How does it work? Read about it on abc News.

 

Assisted Living Today’s Weekly Roundup

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Television airwaves, Facebook statuses, Twitter feeds and online news agencies are heating up with political coverage and opinions as we come closer to election day. No doubt the news will become almost entirely political before too long. In the meantime, there are new developments in health and medicine, technology, and living life as an older adult.

Here at Assisted Living Today, we’ve put together relevant clips, political and otherwise, from things happening around the web. We hope you enjoy, and please let us know of any interesting, relevant news you’ve encountered this week!

Weird but True

What do you do in an emergency? Call 9-1-1, of course! Dispatchers at emergency call centers are saying they are overwhelmed these days. Not because the numbers of emergencies have risen, but because of the “butt dial.” An article in the Huffington Post notes that out of every 100 calls, 40 are accidental, leading to 100 million illegitimate 9-1-1 calls last year.

Senior Lifestyles

The outcome of the presidential election will, of course, effect every American, including seniors. Did you have a chance to watch the Vice President Joe Biden and Paul Ryan square off Thursday night? ABC News covers a few top quotes from the evening debate.

Senior Health

Should you be tested for hepatitis C? The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has urged all Americans born from 1945 through 1965 to get a hepatitis C test, seeing as how baby boomers account for 75 percent of the nearly three million hepatitis C cases in the U.S. Read why on the Richmond-Times Dispatch Savvy Senior blog.

MedicalXpress.com summarizes a new study by researches at the University of Toronto and Georgia Institute of Technology suggesting that Alzheimer patients might function better when they’re surrounded by less visual clutter.

Senior Living

What’s important in an assisted living facility? A new National Research Corporation report rates residents’ and their families’ satisfaction with assisted living facilities and indicates what is important for high satisfaction, according to the Assisted Living Federation of America (ALFA).

Trends in Technology

It’s somewhat curious that one of the biggest trends in technology, E-health for seniors, is not being used by the demographic that could benefit from it most. Read an engaging article in The New York Times about connecting the elderly to the various E-health resources that are widely available today.

Assisted Living Today’s Weekly Roundup

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Children are likely picking out costumes off the racks or, if they’re creative, cutting and gluing masks or assembling costumes from their parent’s closets! Soon the pumpkins sitting around will become jack-o-lanterns with faces carved to elicit smiles or shrieks. It’s a ghoulish time of year.

Here at Assisted Living Today, we’ve scoured the headlines for the latest hair-raising, or at least interest-piquing treats from around the web. We hope you enjoy, and please give us a shout with any interesting or hair-raising news you’ve encountered this week!

Weird but True

Would you have room in your home for 13,000 new items? That’s what a South Florida man had to consider when he inherited 13,000 clown items, ranging from dolls to books to costumes, from his father-in-law and business partner. No question what he’ll be for Halloween! Read about it on Sun Sentinel.

Senior Lifestyles

New proposed voting laws may make it more difficult to vote in the upcoming election. An estimated 18 percent of Americans aged 65 and older lack a state-issued photo ID. Based on census data, that means more than 6 million eligible seniors would be kept from voting. Make sure that’s not you! Read more on ThisisMyVote.org.

Senior Health

This past week’s first presidential debate certainly stirred up controversy as the race to election day tightens. The Medicare Newsgroup discusses the truths and untruths about what was said regarding Obama’s Affordable Care Act which cuts $716 billion from the program.

In his blog, Dr. McCleary summarized a new study recently release in Neuroscience showing a link between fasting and increased brain function, leading researchers to question the effect of fasting on degenerative diseases such as dementia, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.

Senior Living

Retirement brings so many options. Retirement Media gives some suggestions on why renting your retirement home might carry more benefits than buying. If you’re thinking about a new property, read more on SmallTownRetirement.com.

Trends in Technology

Last week, California became the third state to legalize driverless cars, joining Florida and Nevada. What does that mean for seniors? Above all else, it means the chance for lengthened independence. Read more about it on US News & World Report.