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World’s Best Places to Retire

Every day in the USA, around 10,000 people reach the age of 65, when many people retire from working. Some will work longer and others will retire early, but the age of 65 is when most people decide to end their careers.

While some of these people will retire in their hometown or somewhere nearby, plenty of others will head to a different state, country, or even continent to retire the way they want. There are hundreds of choices, but a few places continue to be popular for people of all ages and backgrounds to retire.

Without any further ado, this blog post is going to go over some of the world’s best places to retire.

Panama

A popular choice among many retirees is to retire in Panama. Located in Central America, Panama offers a ton to those who decide to live there. The weather is amazing, it is an incredibly accessible place, and the amenities are top-notch. While tropical and gorgeous, Panama is outside the hurricane belt and thus has a more mild and predictable climate than many other places.

But despite all that is going for Panama, it still remains relatively affordable to live there. In addition to that, there are many pensioner discounts you can get when living there, such as cheaper power, cheaper meals, cheaper medication, and even cheaper entertainment.

Panama is also seen as a tax haven and retirees won’t be taxed on pensions or social security earned in the USA. This has the potential to save you a lot of money throughout your years in retirement.

Portugal

If you want to retire to Europe, one of the best options is Portugal. It has long been a popular place for several reasons. It is an incredibly safe place to live, has incredible healthcare, a ton of vibrant communities, amazing beaches, and gorgeous scenery.

Another thing that makes Portugal so popular is the people. They are incredibly friendly, and always willing to offer a helping hand and greet you with a smile. Also, with English being commonly taught in the country, many people have at least some knowledge of the language, which can make this a more accessible place for many people to retire.

While it might be a little more expensive than other options (yet still relatively affordable), you get what you pay for. Portugal is a stunning place with a ton of history and a lot to do and see across the nation. No matter what you like and how you like to live, there is likely something for you in Portugal.

Costa Rica

A popular place for tourists, Costa Rica is also a wonderful nation to retire to. The healthcare there is incredible, and the cost of living is a fraction of what you may pay in other areas. The climate is tropical and whether you like beaches, rivers, or mountains, they can be found here.

There is a ton to do and see, and many ex-pats confirm that moving to the country has them leading a healthier lifestyle due to the amazing things to do, healthy food and a culture focused on the outdoors.

Also, Costa Rica is often called the “Switzerland of Central America”. It is a peaceful place, very forward-thinking when it comes to social issues, and committed to maintaining the beauty of its environment. Simply put, it has a ton going for it and we are shocked it is still so affordable.

While there are several amazing places to retire around the world, these are a few of the best for those looking for an incredible retirement.

5 Easy Steps to Boost Your Social Connections

Many seniors want to boost social connections. This desire is healthy and supports optimal health. There are 5 specific steps we can take to build connection, foster a sense of belonging, and boost social interactions.

Let’s look at the practical steps you can take. These steps are easy, fast, and affordable. They do not require high-tech equipment or advanced technology skills. Rather, they require a ‘can-do attitude. Let’s get going.

Understand The Problem

While it is tempting to jump to solutions, one of the first steps to take is to understand the problem. It may not be pretty or delightful. However, when you face the problem, you will be motivated to find solutions.

Recent studies link loneliness and social isolation to extremely negative effects on health.

While we actively know that our attitudes and activities affect our health, we may not ‘connect the dots.’ You know that smoking is bad for your health, obesity is hard on your heart, and being inactive is a very bad idea—yet it’s possible to still underrate the impact of loneliness.

Tip: Read up on the negative impacts of loneliness and social isolation. You’ll get inspired to take action.

Explore Personal Experience

With the research looming in your mind, it’s time to explore something a little closer to home. What is your personal experience?

Do you feel close to family and friends? Do you feel happy being on your own? Do you have someone to talk to about your feelings?

How often do you talk with other people? Do you go for days without speaking to another person? Is television your main company? How do you feel about your current level of social contact?

If you prefer, write your thoughts down in a journal. Or, perhaps talk this over with a friend or family member.

Tip: Take time to notice what you are feeling and thinking.

Talk To A Professional

If you find that you’re feeling isolated or anxious, you are not alone. Some caring professionals can help. Often, confidential consultation can provide you with options that are available online or in your area.

When you talk with a professional, you can make a treatment plan for anxiety that can help you enjoy a higher quality of life. It’s good to know that what you may be experiencing is not your only choice.

Tip: Reach out and talk with a professional about your experiences.

Strengthen Existing Relationships

Over recent months and years, you may have moved locations. Perhaps your best friend, neighbor, or relatives have also changed locations. Frequently, physical shifts create new patterns of relating.

If it’s been a while since you talked with a friend or relative, reach out. It doesn’t have to be a big deal. Send an email. Send a note. Draw a picture. Pick up the phone.

While it may seem like it’s been a long time, close friends are often just busy, preoccupied, or caught up in their hectic lifestyles. Hearing from a close friend is always a welcome treat.

Tip: Make a list of the friends and family you want to contact. Start with one.

Make New Friends

What’s on the menu for making new friends? It is easier than you might imagine. Take a look at your neighbors, associates, and colleagues. Perhaps you already have an idea who you’d like to get to know better.

If so, make a plan to get together for coffee or tea. Set up a time to meet. Plan an activity you both enjoy such as going for a walk or enjoying a movie.

If you aren’t sure who you’d like to befriend, experiment. Join a community art class. Try out a new relaxation class. Explore a course in mindfulness, tai chi, or yoga. Volunteer for your favorite charity or community service. Without even trying, you’ll meet like-minded people to share your time with. In the process, you just may make some new friends who enjoy your current interests.

Tip: Pick one step towards making new friends. Take that step today.

Wrapping It Up

At every stage in life, make an effort to maintain existing relationships, get support, build new friendships, and strengthen your social connections. Today is a good day to start.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Mobility Aids for Seniors


As a caregiver, you want to ensure that your loved one has the best quality of life possible. However, when your loved one has limited mobility and can no longer safely access different areas of their home, their quality of life inevitably falters. Even with assisted living programs, it’s still crucial that seniors use mobility aids to help them maintain their independence.

Finding the best mobility equipment to fit a senior’s home, mobility needs, and lifestyle is no simple task, though. This blog will detail the most important factors to consider when choosing mobility aids for seniors.

Identifying Mobility Needs

The first step to choosing a mobility aid for your loved ones is to identify their mobility needs. Whether your loved one has suffered a significant injury, has a medical condition, or needs general mobility assistance, each of these circumstances could affect what mobility aid will be the best equipment to improve their lifestyle.

It’s also essential to have a personalized view of your senior or loved one’s mobility needs. Consider what areas of frustration your senior experiences the most often while trying to access different areas of their home. Noting whether climbing stairs, navigating the bathroom, or just getting out of bed affects their mood could help to narrow your focus on the best mobility aid to purchase.

Considering Living Space

When it comes to finding mobility equipment for seniors, factoring in their current living space is a major consideration. Caregivers commonly buy mobility aids based on a senior’s mobility needs but forget to factor in their living space.

For example, what is the current floorplan of your loved one’s home? What areas of your loved one’s home are the most in need of mobility equipment? How much room will your loved one’s home have for a mobility aid?

Contemplating each of these questions is essential. Installing mobility equipment in a cramped floorplan could ultimately be more dangerous than helpful to seniors. So, it’s crucial to ask whether your loved one will have a better quality of life with assisted living or in a retirement community.

Consider having this conversation with your loved one to find the best living situation to support their health and independence.

Finding a Mobility Equipment Supplier

Once you’re confident about finding mobility equipment that fits your loved one’s needs, it’s time to find an equipment supplier. Trust and transparency are two of the most important qualities to look for in a mobility equipment supplier. Since you’ll be helping your senior adjust their lifestyle to using completely new machinery, you must feel comfortable asking your mobility supplier questions and feel confident about their answers. Mobility equipment suppliers should visit your home to take measurements for your equipment and have factory-certified technicians create personalized mobility aids.

Before choosing a mobility equipment supplier for your loved one’s mobility aids, ensure that you trust your supplier. Taking time to find the right fit for both you and your senior will make the installation process of these aids easier.

We hope this guide on the factors to consider when choosing mobility aids for seniors has been a beneficial resource. As a caregiver, it’s never easy to watch your loved one struggle with their quality of life and independence.

Following this guide and taking time to find the best equipment to fit your loved one’s mobility needs will be instrumental. Once your senior has more access to their home and less frustration tied with their mobility, they can begin to comfortably regain their independence.

Male Health Problems: 6 Concerns To Look Out For As You Age

There are a range of health problems that affect men more than women, either for biological reasons or social.

As you get older, you might notice that these issues become more prevalent, which means that you need to be aware of them.

Keep reading and we’ll outline some common male health problems that can arise at any time, but particularly as you get older.

Depression And Suicide

Mental health is one of the most important parts of any man’s health, especially due to the impact that it can have. Within the US alone, up to nine percent of men have daily feelings of depression or anxiety, with these feelings causing a range of health issues.

Sadly, the suicide rate amongst American men is almost four times higher than those of women, due to social factors and stigma regarding mental health. This is because a large percentage of men will experience some form of depression at some point in their life, without knowing what to do about it.

Retirees might find that they struggle with their mental health and wellbeing, particularly as other men their age start to die and they find they lose their lifelong friends.

If in doubt, one of the most effective ways to help manage this is by speaking to a therapist or a counselor. It may also benefit you to speak to those you care about in your life, such as family or friends, about what you’ve been going through, to help make it seem more real and not bottle it all up.

Diabetes

Diabetes is a condition that affects the body with the way it processes sugar, which effectively means that blood sugar levels can become too high. They affect both men and women, but men are 40% more likely to die of the disease prematurely.

There are two main types of diabetes, known as type 1 and type 2. Type 1 occurs when your body can’t produce any insulin, which is the hormone that controls the levels of sugar within the body to go into the cells. These types of diabetics can have no dieting reasons for having the disease, but diet is a big part of it in general.

Type 2 diabetes will be the one majorly affected by weight and diet. This will be because they still produce insulin, just that it doesn’t work. These symptoms can be controlled by changing your lifestyle, so it’s worth speaking to a doctor. There are potentially millions of people out there who simply aren’t aware that they have diabetes of type 2, but a doctor can help to diagnose.

Prostate Cancer

In the US, around 1 in 8 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer at some point during their lifetime. It is much more common in older men, with 6 in 10 cases for those aged 65 or older. Whilst true it is rare in men under 40, it is not impossible.

If you’re unsure, the prostate is a walnut-sized gland that sits underneath your bladder, which helps to produce semen. This gland will grow throughout your life, as you get older. That’s partly why the risk increases. In general, the risk is higher for black men and those with a family history of prostate cancer. For example, a man who has a family member with the disease is 2.5 times more likely to develop prostate cancer than a man without this history.

This is why it’s important to be aware of your family history, as it could save your life. You can do this by speaking to family members, or by using medical service businesses that will have all the important information that you need to be aware of.

There will be signs and symptoms of prostate cancer, especially at an early stage, that you can catch to increase your recovery chances. Late diagnosis can make it more difficult to treat, so you should watch out for any drastic changes with your urination. For example, this could be you having a weak flow in general, or noticing blood in the urine. If you struggle to fully empty your bladder, or experience an increase in the sudden need to urinate, then it could be a sign to see your doctor.

With prostate cancer, there are four main stages. They will range from stage one, known as the early stage, to stage four, known as advanced prostate cancer. Doctors will use this type of measurement to best categorize them and understand the options available to them. You can use Ezra’s guide to the stages of prostate cancer, to get a better understanding of yourself, and get medical advice on what you need to do.

Back Pain

With back pain being one of the biggest causes of disability in the UK, it’s an issue that could affect a big percentage of men. At some point in life, around 8 in ten people will suffer from back pain. The most common of which is lower back pain, but the issue can go up to anywhere along the spine.

You must look after your back to best avoid any associated pain. You can strengthen these muscles by utilizing a variety of daily back exercises, or general lower impact activities such as yoga or swimming. These are great ways to feel fit in general, and make your back more flexible.

If you are someone who sits at a desk all day, then you will need to set up your workspace to best reduce the risk of back straining. This could be to do with the chair you sit in, being more ergonomic, as well as ensuring everything is in an easy-to-reach place. You should also be doing regular stretching every hour, to help your muscles. If you lift heavy objects all day, then you should be lifting from the knees.

Addiction

Forms of addiction can come in many different forms. The most common of which is drugs and alcohol. Statistically speaking, men are more likely to become addicted for several social reasons, as well as due to history.

Addiction refers to the condition that you compulsively feel like you need a substance, even if it damages your health or creates behavior that can cause harm. The most infamous addictions come in the form of gambling, alcohol, nicotine, and drugs. If you feel like you have these strong desires, then you will need to speak to a doctor.

If you have attempted to stop, then you may be going through something known as withdrawal. This can create health problems due to your body’s fixation on the substance, which makes your body react through sweating and brain compulsions to seek the substance.

Heart Disease

One of the leading causes of death for men comes in the form of heart disease. There is a range of risk factors for men in this category, including smoking, high levels of cholesterol or blood pressure, general obesity, and having diabetes.

There are warning signs you can look out for, including chest pain, nausea, or pain in the arm, jaw, or back. If you are constantly feeling tired or sweaty, then this could also be a sign. There are ways you can manage heart disease to best prevent it early. Some of the most effective ways include quitting bad habits such as smoking and alcohol, or at least cutting down on them.

You can also help boost your heart by looking at what you are eating. This will include engaging with a diet high in fruits and vegetables, whilst also being low in saturated fat and salt.

The Best Reasons to Get a Power Lift Chair

Power lift chairs are quickly becoming the premier way to create a comfortable sitting area for those who have mobility trouble. These chairs make it extremely easy to get in and out of them while providing a safe method of operation. In fact, these chairs are so safe that you can operate them yourself without any assistance.  This is without a doubt the reason that assisted living facilities use these chairs so much! If you are considering purchasing one, here are some of the best reasons to get a power lift chair.

It Hurts to Sit and Stand

Many people considering power lift chairs will cite the fact that it hurts to sit and stand. While most will attribute this to knee problems, many others will attribute it to spine and hip pain. No matter what the case is, these chairs can help by providing an extremely easy and pain-free way to get into or out of a seat. One of the biggest misconceptions about these chairs is that you will need someone else to help operate the chair. In reality, these chairs are designed so that you can easily operate them independently, meaning you will not need anyone to help you.

You Want the Ability to Sit Without Help

One of the biggest frustrations and reasons for getting this type of chair is the frustration of not being independent. It can be very embarrassing for those who may be accustomed to having mobility. Having these chairs can be extremely beneficial for those who do not have as much mobility as they would like but still want to do the things they want while still being comfortable.

You Value Your Relaxation and Recovery

Reclining chairs also help provide an environment in which the body can heal itself more efficiently. Because of the angle that these types of chairs place your body at, they increase blood flow, and there is much less resistance due to gravity. Because of this, it can give many people with weak hearts some time to sit and rest without having to battle their own bodies.

No matter what your situation is, there are certainly great reasons for getting a power lift chair. The biggest thing you must consider is how much use you will get out of it and whether it is really needed. If you feel like you need a chair like this, it is a great purchase that will improve your quality of life.

6 Assistive Technology Tools for a More Independent Elder

If you are taking care of an elder, you can greatly benefit from using assistive technology to encourage them to be more independent.

Since technology has made several leaps and bounds, there are a myriad of easy-to-use tools and devices that you can get for senior citizens in order to make their lives easier and simpler. Depending on their needs and preferences, assistance technology can enhance their quality of life and keep them more engaged with everyday affairs.

It is important to ensure that seniors use these devices of their own free will and fully understand their pros and cons. 

In this article, we highlight some of the best and most affordable assistive technology tools to enable senior citizens to lead a more independent lifestyle.

Virtual Reality Therapy

If you are struggling to take your loved one to their therapy sessions, you can opt for virtual reality therapy and arrange treatment for them from the comfort of their home. 

Virtual reality therapy is a type of telehealth whereby professional and licensed medical practitioners offer services remotely using a virtual reality (VR) headset. It is highly accessible, convenient, and cost-effective as it can save trips to the clinic and can be done from any place in the world. 

Virtual reality therapy, which is covered by most insurance providers, works by signing up, choosing a therapist, and receiving a VR headset to begin treatment. 

Mobile Applications

As more and more senior citizens are using mobile phones, modern technology, in the form of helpful mobile applications, can be used to help them achieve a more independent lifestyle. 

For example, you can encourage seniors in your life to install and use apps that remind them to take their medication on time, or ones that help them with their finances by giving them news about discounts and special offers for seniors. 

Elders can also install apps that help them read small prints, such as Magnifying Glass+Flashlight, or even an app that helps them locate their parked car. 

Fitness Devices

Fitness devices and trackers are an excellent way to motivate and encourage seniors to live an active and healthy lifestyle by constantly giving them reminders and notifications. 

From a simple pedometer to a wristband tracker, a fitness device can help with monitoring heart rate, tracking sleep, counting calories, and general activity throughout the day. Just ensure that the fitness devices can be read easily, are waterproof, and are easy to use. 

Buttoning Aid Hook

A buttoning aid hook is a senior assistive device and is particularly useful for those suffering from arthritis, joint pain, motor impairment, or dexterity issues. 

Made from an acrylic material, it is a device that can be used by one hand for opening or closing shirt or pant buttons. Using a three-step technique involving grab, loop and pull, it is a durable and inexpensive device that you can purchase for your loved ones. 

So if you want an elder in your life to perform a simple task such as getting dressed pain-free and independently, a buttoning aid hook might be just what you are looking for. 

GPS Trackers

In case a senior citizen is suffering from memory loss or has Alzheimer’s or dementia, they may tend to forget where they kept their belongings or may even be at a risk to themselves in case they get lost. To remedy this, introduce them to GPS trackers and explain the pros and cons of using them.

Some GPS trackers can be attached to belongings such as clothes or shoes, while others, such as a GPS necklace, can be worn by the user to make it easy for caregivers to locate them at any given time. 

Bed Rails

Elders with medical conditions such as arthritis or vertigo may struggle with safely getting out of bed. For this purpose, specialized bed rails may be a useful assistive tool to help them in their daily activity.

These bed rails come in various forms such as with LED light activation or motion sensors. They may also be height adjustable, have non-slip handles, a high weight capacity, and may even contain a storage pouch for personal items. Installing such bed rails can prevent slips and falls, and will make it easy for elders to get in and out of bed.

Parting Thoughts

Using assistive technologies to improve the overall lifestyle of elders and enabling them to live independently can boost morale and uplift their spirits. By investing in the right type of innovative devices and technologies, you can empower elders to live a more fulfilling life in which they take ownership of their physical, emotional, and social well-being. 

Hypothyroidism and Older Adults

Research suggests that 1 in 4 older adults in nursing homes have undiagnosed hypothyroidism. However, it often goes unidentified and untreated because we attribute the symptoms to other health conditions like cardiovascular disease. Yet, treating hypothyroidism in older adults can have powerful benefits on your overall health and well-being. Suppose you or a loved one is over age 60. In that case, this article will help you understand how hypothyroidism presents itself and what you can expect with treatment.

What does hypothyroidism look like in older adults?

People over age 60 are at an increased risk for hypothyroidism. Like adults younger than 60, autoimmune thyroiditis is the primary cause of hypothyroidism in this population. In particular, women are much more likely to receive a diagnosis of hypothyroidism than men. 

Hypothyroidism looks differently in older adults than younger adults. Specifically, older adults tend to have a vague presentation of hypothyroidism. Their symptoms are often subtle and sometimes dismissed as typical aging signs. For example, constipation and dry skin are common in older adults. Still, these symptoms could also indicate low thyroid hormone levels.

Older adults tend to have fewer symptoms, whereas people younger than 60 often have multiple symptoms. For example, an older adult may only exhibit some cognitive changes. In contrast, someone younger may experience most, or all, of the following symptoms of hypothyroidism.

Common symptoms of hypothyroidism include:

  • Fatigue
  • Weight gain
  • Puffy face
  • Muscle weakness
  • Dry skin and thinning hair
  • Constipation
  • Cold intolerance
  • Joint pain and stiffness
  • Slowed heart rate
  • Depression
  • Cognitive changes like memory loss
  • Goiter

Older adults can experience any of the above symptoms. However, many of these symptoms coincide with other common health conditions. And, as you can see, some symptoms are classified as a normal part of aging. 

While hair does thin as we get older, and joint pain is more common with age, these symptoms can signify that more is going on inside the body.

Diagnosing hypothyroidism in older adults

Because we often miss hypothyroidism in older adults, your doctor needs to have a complete understanding of your health history, current symptoms, and medications you are taking. People with a family history of thyroid disease or a history of treatment for hyperthyroidism should be especially aware of the risk of hypothyroidism. Furthermore, people with a history of surgery or radiation to the neck area may also be at a greater risk for an underactive thyroid in older adulthood. 

Getting a firm diagnosis for hypothyroidism as an older adult can be challenging. Often, thyroid function tests can fall in the normal range or be just slightly below normal. 

To check for hypothyroidism, you should get a complete thyroid panel to look at your TSH, T4, T3, and TPO antibody levels. Suppose your blood test shows a slightly elevated TSH, but you do not have symptoms. In that case, your doctor may suggest you repeat the test in three months’ time before prescribing treatment. 

Treating hypothyroidism

Older adults require a different treatment plan if they have subclinical or overt hypothyroidism. Subclinical hypothyroidism is where your T4 level is normal, but your TSH is slightly elevated. Studies show that older adults with subclinical hypothyroidism often have no symptoms. Intriguingly, your risk for cardiovascular disease does not increase if you have subclinical hypothyroidism. Thus, a thyroid doctor may not treat subclinical hypothyroidism with medication if you do not have symptoms. 

Older adults with overt hypothyroidism, where TSH is high and T4 is low, tend to need medication. With those lab results, you likely have some symptoms. Other systems in your body may be negatively affected if you do not get treatment. 

Treatment for hypothyroidism usually involves replacing low T4 levels with thyroid hormone replacement medication like levothyroxine, a synthetic thyroid hormone medication. Usually, a thyroid doctor will start an older adult on a lower dose than people under 60 to ensure their heart can tolerate the medication. Once cardiovascular tolerance is determined, the doctor may start slowly increasing the dose and re-checking thyroid function test every 4-6 weeks. 

Some doctors may start their older patients on a normal starting dose (1.6mcg/kg) if they do not have any risk factors or history of heart disease. 

Age-related changes that affect treatment

Regular changes in the body can affect how the body metabolizes synthetic thyroid hormone. Therefore, a doctor needs to follow the dosing carefully to ensure an older patient is not over-treated. Too much medication can cause hyperthyroidism, which can have severe consequences in older adults.

Regular age-related changes that can compromise your treatment with medication include:

  • Declining metabolic clearance of medications
  • Decreasing body mass 
  • Progression of underlying failure of the thyroid gland
  • Interactions with other drugs and diseases

A thyroid doctor may take a “start low, go slow” approach to treating hypothyroidism because of these age-related changes. This means that your doctor may start you on a lower than normal dose and may take more time between dose increases to assess how your whole body responds to treatment wholly.

Hypothyroidism has no age limit: it can affect infants in utero to people in their last years of life. If you or a loved one suspects you may have an underactive thyroid gland, find an endocrinologist in your area or via telemedicine to get the care you deserve.

Ways to Combat the Growing Issue of Seniors and Loneliness

One of the reasons people look forward to retirement is the increased time to do things they enjoy, like hobbies, traveling, and spending time with loved ones. However, what isn’t considered is the increased loneliness that comes with age. Unfortunately, as they age, seniors lose significant others, relatives, and friends to death, leaving them with few people to enjoy the later years in life with. Consequently, they spend a lot of time feeling lonely. 

When unresolved, this loneliness and social isolation can lead to depression and a worsening of senior health. Although there’s nothing anyone can do to prevent losses, there are ways to combat these negative feelings as you age. Continue reading for suggestions. 

Schedule Family Visits

Whether you live at home or in a senior living facility, family time is essential to your quality of life. Whenever it’s convenient, find time to spend with relatives. Ask your adult children to come to visit you once a week and have lunch, watch television, or run errands. When your senior community has family days, ensure that you spread the word to people you’d like to spend time with. 

Local Community Centers

Many cities have community centers with programs geared towards the elderly. They provide meals, transportation, and activities like bingo, knitting, exercise classes, trips, and more. These are all opportunities to mix and mingle with other seniors in your neighborhood. 

As you attend the programs more often, you can begin to cultivate friendships that help combat your loneliness. If you’re a resident at a senior living facility, you can always inquire about their onsite activities that you can participate in for socialization and enjoyment. 

Join A Gym

There’s more to having a gym membership than meets the eye, especially if you’re experiencing loneliness. When you visit the gym, you’re automatically surrounded by like-minded individuals that can help you pass the time as you maintain your health. You don’t have to lift weights or use the gym equipment the entire time; there’s always the option to join classes. Whether you try aerobics, swimming, barre, or take a body sculpt class, it’s a chance to interact with others. 

Volunteer Your Time

You may not be working anymore, but that doesn’t mean that your skills, experience, and time can’t be put to good use. If you’re feeling lonely, why not volunteer your time to help others? If there’s a school nearby, you can visit and read books to the children. Go to the nearest homeless shelter and volunteer to prepare or serve meals. Maybe you belong to a church that needs assistance with some of their onsite or community outreach programs. When you volunteer your time, it helps you feel less lonely. It also gives you a sense of purpose and boosts your confidence as you assist others. 

Utilize Modern Technology

Modern technology has come a long way in helping people around the world to stay connected. If you want to feel a sense of belonging, perhaps you could invest in a few tools and reunite with the rest of the world. You can use video conferencing software to talk to your friends and family that live further away. You could create a social media account and watch videos, share photos, and exchange messages with whomever you’d like. 

Although it’s not the same as interacting in person, connecting with others through technology can help bridge the gap when you’re feeling isolated. Talking weekly to someone online or via video will significantly enhance your overall mood and quality of life.

There are many obstacles to overcome as you age. However, one of the most prevalent is combatting isolation and loneliness. As you lose loved ones, your social circle shrinks, leaving you with nowhere to turn. Eventually, you stay to yourself and develop feelings of depression. This doesn’t have to be your story. By using suggestions like those listed above, you can reduce those lonely days and spend your golden years feeling much happier.

7 Reasons Medical Alert Systems Are Crucial in Senior Care

Medical alert systems can play a huge role in the health and wellbeing of seniors. Are you a caregiver for your parents? Or perhaps you live alone and are starting to think about extra layers of protection for your health and safety.  In either scenario, obtaining a medical alert system is a smart choice for many caregivers and seniors these days.

What is a Medical Alert System?

Sometimes referred to as a personal emergency response system or PERS, medical alert systems (MAS) are communication devices that use computer technology to alert emergency response teams in case someone is experiencing duress.  There are two types of MAS devices.  One is an in-home system that consists of a console and a panic button.  The console or base unit is plugged into the wall and then connected to a telephone jack, or Ethernet port.  The panic button can be worn as a pendant or wristband and is pressed in case of emergency.  This prompts a signal to the base console which then pings emergency response workers who respond to the signal. 

The other type of medical alert system is mobile and is connected by WiFi or cellular link and may also have GPS capability. They work similarly to a mobile phone but provide convenience in that they are worn as a pendant or bracelet.  When activated, these wearable devices will connect the user with an emergency specialist.  To understand which device is best for your circumstances, we recommend this in-depth overview https://www.health.com/health-reviews/the-best-medical-alert-systems for further clarification.

Why You Should Consider Obtaining a Medical Alert System

According to the above-referenced article by Health.com, more than 1 in 4 seniors fall each year and 1 in 5 of these falls are serious, leading to head injuries, hip fracture or broken bones.  In light of these staggering statistics, a MAS provides a much-needed layer of protection.  While falls can’t always be avoided, severe injuries can be lessened with MAS capability.  An alert system can provide a fast response time so you or your loved one can receive medical attention quickly, thus reducing the chances of permanent injury.

Reasons to Consider Getting a Medical Alert System

Medical alert systems aren’t exclusively used in cases of falling. There are other reasons to consider installing a MAS in the home or obtaining a mobile alert device.  Read on for reasons these medical tech devices are a good idea if you are a caregiver or senior seeking safety and wellbeing.

Peace of Mind: According to the insightful medical alert system review provided by Health.com, these devices bring tremendous relief to caregivers and seniors alike.  Knowing that help is moments away at the touch of a button is a salve to your sanity when encountering potentially stressful or hazardous situations.

Allows for Better Independence:  For active seniors, Health.com recommends mobile, wearable MAS devices as a way to stay independent and enjoy freedom. These mobile, wearable devices use GPS technology allowing first responders to triangulate a location in the event of an emergency.  In some cases, mobile apps are available for these devices that can notify family members or caregivers if an emergency arises.  This versatility and convenience often allow active seniors a remarkably better quality of life.

Easy to Install and Use:  Based on reviews provided by Health.com, the best medical alert systems are extremely simple to install and even easier to use.  In most cases, a MAS is simply plugged in and/or synched with a user’s cellular account.  Using a MAS is as easy as pressing a button to alert first responders.  Some devices even allow two-way conversations between the user and an emergency service professional.

Timely Help When Needed:  The top medical alert systems offer real-time monitoring 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  This means you are monitored every moment and have access to help when needed.  Furthermore, some MAS devices offer faster response times than others. Refer to response time information listed on Health.com to determine the best medical alert system for your needs.

Versatility and Added Features: Many medical alert systems on the market today offer specialized features in addition to emergency alert functionality.  For instance, mobile apps can be downloaded on some devices that allow friends and family to be contacted in addition to first responders in case of emergencies.  There are other devices that provide scheduled reminders to users in the event they need to be notified when to take medications.  Other features include fall detection, speakerphone communication, and activity trackers.

Additional Emergency Protection:  Medical alert systems are a powerful tool for getting seniors quick care in the event of an accident. However, they also provide additional protection in the event of a home crisis.  A medical alert device can be activated in case of a house fire, or hazards encountered during natural disasters.  Furthermore, a medical alert system can be utilized to notify first responders if there is a home intrusion such as break-ins, or burglaries.    

Affordability and Variable Price Options:  MAS devices come in a wide range of price points.  There is typically an upfront cost for the device and installation followed by a monthly service cost.  The cost analysis provided by Health.com’s medical alert review reveals that service costs can range anywhere from $19.95 – $58.95 per month.  Health.com goes on to explain how some Medicare Advantage plans (known as Part C plans) and private insurances can help pay the costs of MAS services.  This informative review also mentions that AARP may offer exclusive discounts to help users afford certain MAS services.  Additionally, some medical alert companies offer discounts for prepayment or the purchase of a second unit.

Is a Medical Alert System the Right Choice for You?

After reviewing these reasons for getting a medical alert system, it should be clear that these life-saving devices are crucial for senior care.  Determining which MAS device is right for you might take some time and research, and that’s why Health.com has provided a thorough, insightful review so you can choose the proper device for your needs. In the final analysis, medical alert systems provide significant advantages for seniors and caregivers alike.

Issues Family Members of Seniors Commonly Experience

Most older Americans need no help at all from others. In fact, a lot of them are too busy helping others or contributing to their families, workplaces, and communities in other ways. That said, some older people will eventually need a bit of assistance from others. Here’s a quick look at some of the issues seniors commonly experience.

Health and Medical Issues

Medical issues are quite common later in life. Many adults suffer from chronic conditions that require ongoing help such as physical therapy in Guilford, CT or meal delivery service for those who cannot cook. There may also be a need for monitoring or other types of ongoing medical attention. Knowing which services are necessary and which physicians are responsible for care is critical to maintaining a healthy lifestyle and staying on top of medications, if applicable.  

Mental issues may take center stage for some. Just as younger people suffer from anxiety, depression, and other types of mental issues, so do older people. It’s critical to get help for these as they often lend to other problems.

ADLs (Activities of Daily Living)

ADLs are essentially the key tasks of daily life. Older people will often need assistance with these, which can include services that make remaining independent possible.  Meal preparation, home maintenance, shopping, finances, and transportation are just a few. Additionally, the level of assistance one needs can help determine the type of care or housing arrangements families might consider for their elders.

Financial and Legal Issues

There are times when older people might lose the capacity to deal with financial and legal issues. Even older adults who are cognitively intact can be vulnerable to financial exploitation. Planning ahead for these issues and getting the necessary paperwork done beforehand can make things easier for the family to step in when it becomes a necessity.

Housing

The housing situation an older person has can affect their quality of life, the ability others have to provide assistance, safety concerns, and more. Often, family members need to consider whether the elderly person’s housing situation is compatible with them aging in place, or if a more supportive environment, like a family member’s house, is a better option, and possibly necessary. Many often need to make sure a living situation is financially viable.

Thriving and Quality of Life

Aside from meeting their basic needs, many families are also concerned about the quality of life their older family members have. This includes dignity, autonomy, purpose, and social connectedness. It’s also critical to learn what things matter the most to the person in question, and which they might be willing to trade off for a better lifestyle.

Planning Ahead

There are many things to plan ahead for, like end-of-life care, emergencies, and future declines. Planning ahead for these events can reduce expenses, hassles, and sometimes, stress.

Helping an aging parent or family member later in their life can be an endeavor that’s pretty complicated. Oftentimes issues overlap and require more attention. For example, the medical condition of the older person can easily affect their ability to handle their ADLs and their needs for caregiving. 

If you’re attempting to help an aging family member, just remember that patience is key. Yes, there’s a lot to it, but with a bit of persistence, you’ll be able to sort through it. Just don’t forget to take care of yourself, too.