5 Things I've learned From Dementia #4
Painting by Rafe Schiwwmer courtesy of The Art of Alzheimers
4) Take care of yourself. Your life may depend on it!
Dementia in later stages can be all consuming. It may involve repetitive questioning or progress to a loss of executive function entirely. Caregivers cope with heavy demands for attention and sometimes ongoing resistance or aggressive behavior. Nitty gritty hygiene needs and unpredictable behavior can be a daily reality. For some round the clock monitoring is necessary. Dementia can last 7 years or more and there are no drugs that cure and few that slow or manage the condition. This presents caregivers with a challenge: where is the time to take care of myself?
Can we slow or eliminate aging? Investors say: yes.
Last century we found treatments for cancer, developed antibiotics, expanded medical imaging systems, and made heart interventions commonplace. This century can we slow the aging process? Investors are saying yes! They're part of a confluence of medical breakthroughs, investors hungry for hidden gold, and hopeful radical life extension advocates that are making the elimination or slowing of aging a potential reality. Thinkers have been imagining this moment for some time as you'll learn reading the history of the anti-aging research movement. People have debated the ethics of longevity but what happens if we find the solution for aging and end the process of growing old? Most importantly, how will it all impact you?
Image at left depicting causes of cell senescence is courtesy of the Journal of Cell Biology. The image can be enlarged at its source.
Are We Safe Yet? Lesbian, Gay, and Transgender Elders Wonder
Do you get to know yourself better as you age? Does it become more important to you to be who you are? If you said yes to either of these questions you probably understand how meaningful it is to embrace one's identity in later life. Celebrating identity is at the root of Pride month. Pride parades and educational events lift awareness of the gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) experience. Often lost in that energetic and youthful fanfare though is the voice of the aging LGBTQ community. What's it like to be an LGBTQ elder? Are LGBTQ elders getting what they need? Is the health care system ready to care for this cohort?
Benefits of fast and slow walking--which is best?
Walking is perhaps the best low impact exercise most people can enjoy. A daily outing rewards with many benefits. Some health improvements are noticeable while others are subtle. You'll soon recognize, for instance, that walking improves strength and stamina but less obvious is how walking may strengthen your heart, moderate blood sugar, boost your immunity and promote longer life. In this era of Fitbit and fitness at all ages one might think it's important to walk fast to gain significant benefit yet each speed is valuable to our health in its own way. Speed, like distance, is a variable you control. Learn about the benefits of each speed and vary your pace for a rounded workout.