Retirement - Top 5 Things To Know


What do you think of when you hear the word retirement? Financial freedom, not working, relaxing, traveling the world?  Retirement age has long been defined as those age 65 and older.   As the baby boomer generation head into their senior years, they are leading a demographic shift in Read more

Elder Abuse - Recognizing the Warning Signs


We began our Elder Abuse Awareness Series with Elder Abuse - Stopping It Begins With Awareness and defined the different types of abuse.  This post will provide information on recognizing the warning signs. Recognizing Warning Signs of Elder Abuse According to the California Department of Justice, elder abuse victims often Read more

Anti-Aging or Healthy Aging?


One of the most successful marketing terms of all times has to be “anti-aging”. Put an anti-aging label on most any product, and it flies off the shelves.  Is it possible to look your best without spending beau coup money on anti-aging products or going under the knife?  Read more

Elder Abuse - Stopping It Begins with Awareness


What is Elder Abuse? In observance of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2012, we will begin our awareness series with defining the different types of elder abuse.   According to the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA), elder abuse is a term referring to any knowing, intentional, or negligent act Read more

Retirement – Top 5 Things To Know

admin Retirement

What do you think of when you hear the word retirement?

Financial freedom, not working, relaxing, traveling the world?  Retirement age has long been defined as those age 65 and older.   As the baby boomer generation head into their senior years, they are leading a demographic shift in the retirement age and painting a brand new picture of what retirement looks like.

According to Ken Budd, executive director of AARP The Magazine the top five things you should know are as follows:

1. Stick to a budget - Spend less, save more, and diversify your investments

2. Start a business – Guess who’s leading the charge in entrepreneurship, nope not Mark Zuckerberg!

3. Stay mentally sharp – Continue learning.  Learning is what builds new brain cells.

4. Lead a fulfilling lifestyle – Stay active. Those that maintain a busy, active lifestyle are much happier.

5. Best places to live  - ??????

Check out the above video to see what else he has to say about retirement and what cities are listed in the top 5 places to live!


Elder Abuse – Recognizing the Warning Signs

admin Elder Abuse

We began our Elder Abuse Awareness Series with Elder Abuse – Stopping It Begins With Awareness and defined the different types of abuse.  This post will provide information on recognizing the warning signs.

Recognizing Warning Signs of Elder Abuse

According to the California Department of Justice, elder abuse victims often suffer in silence, unwilling to seek assistance because they believe their cries for help will go unanswered and they fear retaliation from their abusers.  Many remain silent to protect abusive family members from legal consequences of their crimes, or are too embarrassed to admit that they have fallen victim to predators.  Others fear that no one will believe them, chalking up their allegations to the effects of old age.

This means that it may take the courage of a caring family member, friend, or caregiver to take action when the victim may be reluctant.

Below, we have compiled a list of the most common warning signs.  The existence of any one or more of the following does not necessarily mean that abuse has occurred, but in order to combat this issue, we must learn to recognize the telltale indicators that a situation may need to be investigated.

Warning Signs:

  • Bruises, pressure marks, broken bones, abrasions, and burns may be an indication of physical abuse, neglect, or mistreatment
  • Unexplained withdrawal from normal activities, a sudden change in alertness, and unusual depression may be indicators of emotional abuse
  • Bruises around the breasts or genital area can occur from sexual abuse
  • Sudden changes in financial situations may be the result of exploitation
  • Bedsores, unattended medical needs, poor hygiene, and unusual weight loss are indicators of possible neglect
  • Behavior such as belittling, threats and other uses of power and control by spouses are indicators of verbal or emotional abuse
  • Strained or tense relationships, frequent arguments between the caregiver and elderly person are also signs 
  • Withdrawn or hesitant to talk freely
  • Injuries that are incompatible with explanations
  • Scratches, blisters, lacerations, or pinch marks
  • Patches of hair missing or bleeding scalp
  • Malnourished or dehydrated

 

If you suspect abuse, please report it.  Don’t look the other way and let another victim suffer in silent desperation.

For more information on warning signs of elder abuse please visit the following resources:

National Center for Elder Abuse (NCEA) http://www.ncea.aoa.gov


Anti-Aging or Healthy Aging?

admin Health & Wellness

One of the most successful marketing terms of all times has to be “anti-aging”. Put an anti-aging label on most any product, and it flies off the shelves.  Is it possible to look your best without spending beau coup money on anti-aging products or going under the knife?  ABSOLUTELY!

Sure, anti-aging creams may help with the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, but what about the other signs of aging like memory loss, decreased brain functionality, and the increased risk of chronic illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s disease? 

And going under the knife for a little nip, tuck, lift, or pull may provide a temporary physical fix, but even surgical procedures will not stop what happens during the natural aging process.

Instead of buying the newest anti-aging product or paying for an expensive “quick fix”, perhaps a better solution may be to focus on healthy aging.  Adopting a healthy lifestyle that includes regular physical activity, adequate rest, avoidance of tobacco and a diet full of healthy foods and beverages is the best way to live a longer, healthier life. 

Below is a list of foods that can improve brain function, help you maintain memory, and more.

  1. Shellfish: Shellfish contains Vitamin B12, iron, magnesium and potassium which are great for brain function.
  2. Low-fat foods: Psychology Today reports that a diet rich in saturated fatty foods can lead to depression and cancer.
  3. Salmon: Salmon is full of omega-3 fatty acids, which are good for the heart and brain.
  4. Canola oil: Cook with canola oil instead of corn and sunflower oils to up your intake of omega-3s.
  5. Avocado: Avocado is full of the good kinds of fatty acids, and it’s also supposed to be good for your hair and nails.
  6. Good carbohydrates: To keep your glucose levels at the right level, eat vitamin-rich, whole grain cereals, toast and crackers when your energy is low.
  7. Eggs: Eggs contain choline, a type of B vitamin that is good for memory and stress management.
  8. Almonds: Almonds are often touted as a good brain food, giving you lots of energy. They also contain choline.
  9. Fruits and vegetables: Fruits and vegetables have many great health benefits, and the brain especially loves green, leafy veggies.
  10. Lean beef: Lean beef and beef liver also contain choline.

For a complete listing, read 100 Best Health Foods for Seniors by Holly McCarthy. 


Elder Abuse – Stopping It Begins with Awareness

admin Elder Abuse

What is Elder Abuse?

In observance of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2012, we will begin our awareness series with defining the different types of elder abuse.  

According to the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA), elder abuse is a term referring to any knowing, intentional, or negligent act by a caregiver or any other person that causes harm or a serious risk of harm to a vulnerable adult.  The different types of abuse are as follows:

  • Physical Abuse
  • Emotional or Psychological Abuse
  • Sexual Abuse
  • Exploitation
  • Neglect
  • Abandonment

 

Physical abuse is defined as the use of physical force that may result in bodily injury, physical pain, or impairment and may include:

  • Acts of violence such as striking with or without an object,  hitting, beating, pushing, shoving, shaking, slapping, kicking, pinching, and burning.
  • Inappropriate use of drugs and physical restraints,
  • Force feeding
  • Prolonged deprivation of food or water
  • Physical punishment of any kind

 

Emotional or Psychological abuse is defined as the infliction of anguish, pain, or distress through verbal or nonverbal acts and may include:

  • Verbal assaults, insults, threats, intimidation, humiliation, and harassment
  • Subjecting an individual to fear, isolation, or serious emotional distress
  • Treating an older person like an infant
  • Isolating an elderly person from his/her family, friends, or regular activities
  • Giving an older person the “silent treatment;” and enforced social isolation

 

Sexual abuse is defined as non-consensual sexual contact of any kind with an elderly person and includes: 

  • Sexual contact with any person incapable of giving consent
  • Unwanted touching
  • All types of sexual assault or battery, such as rape, sodomy, coerced nudity, and sexually explicit photographing. 


Financial or Material Exploitation is defined as the illegal or improper use of an elder’s funds, property, or assets. Examples include:

  • Cashing an elderly person’s checks without authorization or permission
  • Forging an older person’s signature
  • Misusing or stealing an older person’s money or possessions
  • Coercing or deceiving an older person into signing any document (e.g., contracts or will)
  • Improper use of conservatorship, guardianship, or power of attorney.


Neglect is defined as the refusal or failure to fulfill any part of a person’s obligations or duties to an elder. Neglect may also include failure of a person who has fiduciary responsibilities to provide care for an elder (e.g., pay for necessary home care services) or the failure on the part of an in-home service provider to provide necessary care.) Examples of neglect include:

  • Failure to assist in personal hygiene
  • Failure to provide clothing and shelter
  • Failure to provide medical care
  • Failure to protect from health and safety hazards
  • Failure to prevent malnutrition or dehydration


Abandonment is defined as the desertion of an elderly person by an individual who has assumed responsibility for providing care for an elder, or by a person with physical custody of an elder.

For more information on elder abuse you can visit the following resources:

National Center for Elder Abuse (NCEA) http://www.ncea.aoa.gov

California Department of Justice – A Citizen’s Guide To Preventing & Reporting Elder Abuse


World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) is Friday, June 15th!

admin Elder Abuse

Mark your calendars and prepare to take a stand with us!  World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is on Friday, June 15th, 2012…

As the rate of elder abuse continues to rise, it remains one of the most under recognized and under reported crimes.  Unlike with the occurrence of domestic violence and child abuse, there has been no nationally recognized or organized effort to understand elder abuse or to collect elderly abuse statistics.  This issue is growing at an alarming rate and must be addressed.  

Millions of older adults are abused, neglected, or exploited each year, with 84% of incidents going unreported.   Based on state and federal statistics, nearly 200,000 Californians are victims of elder abuse every year.  Los Angeles County alone represents over 25% of all cases in California. 

The purpose of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) is to promote activities to increase public awareness of this issue and highlight the need for appropriate action.   In observance of WEAAD, we are starting a blog series that will be dedicated to increasing awareness for this issue.  We invite you to take action with us to engage public attention, enlist public support, and generate activity and involvement! 


Are You Experiencing Caregiver Burnout?

admin Caregiver Corner

Most of us have days when we feel tired, irritable, overwhelmed, or unappreciated; when the dozen balls we keep in the air go unnoticed, not to mention rewarded; when it’s all we can do just to drag ourselves out of bed.  Oftentimes we shrug it off and say it’s just stress.  But, if you find yourself feeling like this most of the time, you may be flirting with caregiver burnout.

What is caregiver burnout?

Burnout is a state of emotional, mental, and physical exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress.  Oftentimes, as a caregiver you’re so concerned and consumed with meeting the constant demands and needs of others that you may not even notice the onset of caregiver burnout.

Are you experiencing any of the following: 

  • Feeling increased stress and anxiety over even minor things
  • Despairingly blaming yourself for your inability to meet unrealistic demands
  • Feeling everything is out of control, and you don’t see a way out
  • Loss of energy and constant feeling of exhaustion, emotionally and physically
  • Feeling helpless, hopeless, or on the verge of tears often
  • Overreacting to minor things and snapping much too quickly
  • Frequent indigestion, loss of appetite, more headaches and body aches
  • Significant weight gain or loss, or change in eating patterns
  • Loss of interest in your appearance and grooming
  • Change in sleep patterns or sleeplessness
  • Decreased productivity or lack of interest in work
  • Scattered thinking or inability to concentrate
  • Feeling increasingly cynical, resentful, angry, bitter,
  • Loss of interest in favorite activities and hobbies
  • Withdrawal from anything social, avoidance of friends and family
  • Feeling it takes too much energy to interact with others and do things
  • Inability to relax, feeling there is always something you must be doing
  • Engaging in nervous habits such as binging, chain smoking, drinking
  • Feeling you want to hurt yourself
  • Having increasing thoughts of death
  • Increasing use of medications for anxiety, depression, sleep
  • Feeling physically run down and getting sick much more often

 

The negative effects of caregiver burnout can spill over into every area of life, including your home and social life.  In order to prevent burnout, the first step is to recognize the signs and symptoms.  If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, it is time to seek the support you need.  It is okay to ask for help.


Signs and Symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease

admin Health & Wellness


Everyone becomes forgetful from time to time, especially as they get older. More than half of people over age 65 experience at least some age-related forgetfulness.  But when that forgetfulness becomes more and more regular, starts disrupting daily life, and is accompanied by changes in mood and personality, you may begin to wonder, could it be Alzheimer’s?

Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia and according to research, affects over 5 million people.  According to the Alzheimer’s Association there are 10 signs and symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease which include:

  1. Memory loss that disrupts daily life
  2. Challenges in planning or solving problems
  3. Difficulty completing familiar tasks at home, at work or at leisure
  4. Confusion with time or place
  5. Trouble understanding visual images and spatial relationships
  6. New problems with words in speaking or writing
  7. Misplacing things and losing the ability to retrace steps
  8. Decreased or poor judgment
  9. Withdrawal from work or social activities
  10. Changes in mood and personality

If you or a loved one has experienced any of these symptoms, please see your doctor immediately.


Welcome to our Aging with Grace Blog!

admin Uncategorized

Welcome to our new Aging with Grace Blog!  This is where we will connect with you to share information and tips on healthy aging, chronic disease management, and advice on maintaining a vibrant, thriving, and fulfilling senior lifestyle.  Our goal is to be informative, educational, and at times entertaining, so happy reading!


What is Home Care?

admin Caregiver Corner

What is Home Care?

The term home care describes two very different types of care:

  • Home Health Care is skilled nursing care and is provided by licensed medical professionals, for which you need a prescription.
  • Non-Medical Home Care, such as personal care, homemaker, or companionship services are provided by professional caregivers.

Home care that seniors require often revolves around the Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs).

ADLs are basic activities and functions performed on a daily basis that are usually done without assistance.  The six ADLs are:

  • bathing
  • dressing
  • transferring
  • using the toilet
  • eating
  • walking

IADLs are basic activities and functions performed on a daily basis that are usually done without assistance.  The six IADLs are:

  • light housework
  • preparing meals
  • taking medications
  • shopping for groceries or clothes
  • using the telephone
  • managing money


Thriving in the “Third Act of Life”

admin Health & Wellness

7 Secrets That Will Ensure You Live a Thriving, Vibrant, and Fulfilling “Third Act of Life”

As we age, is it inevitable that our bodies and minds will deteriorate rapidly as we live out our “Third Act of Life”? The answer is a resounding, NO! Below is a summary of seven secrets learned from my 10-year obsession with the subject of thriving in the “3rd act of life”.

#1: Exercise: Daily exercise of at least 30 min- 1 hour is mandatory 6 days a week including cardio, flexibility and strength training.

#2: Eat Healthy: Eat mostly whole foods ( vegetables/ fruits) and lean protein

#3: Never Retire: You may switch pace and no longer work at your 9-5 job but spend your days contributing to society, e.g. teaching kids, volunteering at your favorite charity, etc.

#4: Build a Team: If married, invest time in your partner. If without a life partner, find one or invest in your friendships, get to know younger people to mentor, engage in your community, church, temple. Hire a care giver.

#5: Manage Your Finances: Become debt free, save, invest and live below your means. My rule of thumb is to live on < 50% of your income. Buy long term care insurance.

#6: Manage Your States/Beliefs. The best is yet to come. Learn to handle stress in a way that serves you. Live each day as if it is your last. Maintain your joy always.

#7: Commit to Growth and Development: Learn something new every day. If you are not growing, you are dying!