The new generation of wearable medical alert systems

Wearable medical alert systems summon emergency help with the touch of a button. They are becoming more popular now that many older adults are comfortable using electronic technology. Basic options work only within range of a base unit kept in the home. Other options include cellular technology that works anywhere and the ability to detect if the wearer has fallen. When choosing an alert system company, one should look for a deal with no long-term contracts, low activation fees, no cancellation fees, discounts for add-on services, free replacement for equipment that’s not working, and operators available 24 hours a day. (Locked) More »

Ask the Doctor: Can we prevent this type of dementia?

Some health experts are optimistic that one day we’ll be able to reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease and possibly reverse it. Until then, regular exercise, a healthy diet, controlled blood pressure, and weight control may help lower the risk. (Locked) More »

Are you missing early warning signs of hearing loss?

When a person has hearing loss, the person’s spouse or partner may notice the problem first. Early warning signs include asking people to repeat themselves, thinking everyone is mumbling, and missing important sounds like alarms and doorbells. People who have such early warning signs may need a physical exam and a hearing test. For some people, a hearing aid will improve hearing. Many hearing aids now feature high-tech options, such as digital sound that can be programmed and adjusted using a smartphone, and the ability to wirelessly connect a hearing aid to a smartphone for calls. (Locked) More »

Foot problems? Try these tips to find comfortable shoes

For people who have corns, calluses, bunions, or hammertoes, comfortable shoes are a must. Good shoe candidates include those with uppers made of soft leather or materials with some stretch. Athletic shoes and sandals with adjustable straps are also good possibilities. It’s also important to look for shoes with wide or roomy toe areas (toe boxes), and make sure the shoes are at least half an inch longer than the longest toe. A sturdy heel counter will help keep the foot in place, to cut down on friction and pain.  (Locked) More »

Coffee: Love it or leave it?

Coffee has many health benefits. It’s associated with lower blood pressure, a slower rate of weight gain with age, and reduced risks of developing type 2 diabetes or dying from cardiovascular disease or neurological diseases. But too much caffeinated coffee may lead to insomnia, nervousness, heart palpitations, and the jitters. Too much pressed or unfiltered coffee may raise LDL (bad) cholesterol. It’s best to limit caffeine intake to 300 milligrams per day. Limit pressed coffee to four cups per day More »

Should you keep taking that heartburn medication?

Everyone gets a little heartburn now and then. But if it happens more than three times a week, it’s time to do something about it. One way to treat heartburn is with proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs), which help reduce stomach acid. They’re generally considered safe in the short term. When taken long-term, PPIs are associated with an increased risk of hip fractures, pneumonia, dementia, heart attack, and chronic kidney disease. People taking PPIs should talk to their doctors about whether they really need to continue taking them. (Locked) More »

Do you need a depression screening?

The 2016 U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommendations for depression screenings suggest that older adults be screened for depression when there are systems in place to ensure accurate diagnosis, effective treatment, and appropriate follow-up.  More »