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New Research To Prevent Elderly Falls

Exercising in China
Obesity? Not a problem in China.
Beijing: 16 million residents,10 million bikes.
50,000 exercise daily in parks!

Thanks to brand new research, the American Geriatrics Society has just published its guidelines on  how to treat falls and how to avoid them in the first place. For seniors falls can mean altered lifestyles, fewer trips outside the home,  less independence and more isolation.  Ironically, seniors often make matters worse by not disclosing a fall to family or physician … fearing losing independence. Medications – A Leading Cause of FallsExcessive medications, particularly of psychotropic drugs, are a leading cause of falls.  They may have cumulative effects ” that lead to “unforeseen side effects,” notes the AGS Guidelines. Medications often are prescribed by different doctors that a senior may be seeing, and there can be a lack of communication and awareness of the combined effects of the drugs. Seniors and their families should be particularly aggressive about their medication needs. Customized Exercise Program A large body of evidence now supports the recommendation that exercise, in the form of resistance (strength) training and balance, gait, and coordination training, is effective in reducing falls. Vision impairment Aging is often associated with changes in visual acuity, development of cataracts, macular degeneration, glaucoma, and other conditions that would suggest an effect on risk of falling. Vision concerns should be followed up with formal assessment and suggested treatment, particularly for cataracts. Dizziness When older people rise from a seated position, it’s not uncommon for their blood pressure to drop and for them to become dizzy and even disoriented. This condition, known as postural hypotension, is a common cause of falls. Your blood pressure needs to be checked in two positions – standing as well as seated, notes the Guidelines. Vitamin D Strongly RecommendedSeniors with suspected vitamin D deficiency should be routinely offered supplementation to reduce fall risk. People living in the Northeast and other areas with low seasonal sunlight levels should be evaluated for vitamin D deficiency. Feet and Footwear Common sense rules the day when it comes to aging feet. Well-fitting, comfortable shoes with non-skid soles are recommended. Age-Friendly Homes Many falls and other senior accidents occur at home and can be avoided with a bit of prevention. Many area agencies on aging and other senior programs can recommend or provide home screening services to identify problems. LifeCall Fall Alert Systems fall-alert2 Most Falls Take Place At Home FallAlert Auto Fall Detector by LifeCall is an ideal solution for reliable fall detection in partnership with the LifeCall Medical Alert System. A stylish, wireless fall detector, FallAlert functions both as a standard manual medical alert button and as a fall detection system. The system offers a comprehensive way of managing your risk of falling 24-hours-a-day. Call LifeCall at 1.866.220.1212.

New Research – Poor Sleep Causes Memory Loss

Faithful followers of this blog know that we are a medical alert company focusing on helping the elderly stay in their own homes … and our blog is all about the surprising Good News  these days enveloping the fastest growing population on earth! We focus on simple and tested health ideas you can use,  breaking research in neuroscience and anti-aging, uplifting stories to learn from, new aging-in-place technologies for the home, and much more. What follows is information on another ordinary activity (like drinking lots of water in a previous article) with extraordinary implications! It’s called A Good Night’s Sleep. The regenerative body process called sleep or lack thereof is linked to a number of chronic diseases, including obesity and depression. Now a new study has found a connection between poor sleep and memory storage. It boils down to a difference in the quality of sleep we get as we grow older. This was demonstrated in a recent UC Berkeley study conducted on 33 healthy adults without memory problems (18 participants were mostly in their 20s and 15 were in their 60s and 70s). The group learned 120 word pairs and were asked to recall them for researchers 10 minutes later, then again in the morning after a night’s rest. Brain activity scans of the participants found that the older adults’ quality of sleep was 75 percent lower than the younger group, and that their memory of the word pairs was 55 percent worse the next day. There are a number of ways to improve your sleep quality:

  • Check with your doctor to get treatment. By treating your medical condition, you can improve your quality of sleep dramatically.
  • Unplug. Put away your phones, tablets, laptops and other electrical devices an hour before going to bed. The blue light emitted by these devices interferes with melatonin production, and sends your body the message that it’s daytime, perking you up just as you should be winding down.
  • Exercise. Regular physical activity can improve the quality of your sleep, helping you sleep deeper and faster.

LifeCall Medical Alert SystemsContact LifeCall Medical Alert Systems, one of the leading providers of BOSCH in-home health care monitoring solutions for seniors and at-risk persons seeking to retain their independence and remain in their own homes. www.lifecall.com