Healthy Aging

Grandparenting in the time of COVID-19

Ellen S. Glazer, LICSW

Guest Contributor

As parents grapple with school and daycare closings prompted by coronavirus, grandparents have questions about helping with child care and whether they can safely spend time with their grandchildren.

What works best for treating depression and anxiety in dementia?

There is evidence that antidepressants are not effective in older people with dementia. Emerging research suggests that nondrug, psychosocial interventions are the most effective treatments for depression or anxiety in older adults with cognitive impairment.

The BEEP program: Keep your balance

Matthew Solan

Executive Editor, Harvard Men's Health Watch

As people get older, the complex system that helps them maintain balance does not work as effectively, increasing the risk of a fall. A study found that specific exercises can improve balance in older adults.

Can short bouts of running lengthen lives?

An analysis of research suggests those who run regularly –– regardless of pace, distance, or amount of time –– are more likely to live longer and have a lower risk of cardiovascular disease or cancer.

The role of our minds in the avoidance of falls

Brad Manor, PhD

Contributor

In older people, the majority of falls occur when someone is standing or walking while also performing a separate cognitive or motor task. These tasks require more cognitive effort as we age, but focus and awareness can prevent falls from happening.

Hands or feet asleep? What to do

Robert H. Shmerling, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

It’s happened to all of us: a hand or leg temporarily “falls asleep,” usually from being in one position for too long. Why does it happen? Are there times when you should be concerned about it?

Five healthy habits net more healthy years

Following five healthy lifestyle habits has been shown to extend life expectancy. Better still, a recent study suggests the added years are more likely to be free of illness or disease.

What’s the best way to manage agitation related to dementia?

When people with dementia start exhibiting agitated behaviors, doctors often prescribe medications, but these have risks of serious side effects. A new study found that nondrug interventions were more effective than medications in reducing agitation.

Hearing loss may affect brain health

James Naples, MD

Contributor

Research into a possible connection between age-related hearing loss and brain function found that there is an association, with subjects 50 or older showing signs of cognitive decline even before reaching clinically defined hearing loss.

Trouble with crossword puzzles? Improve your semantic memory

Semantic memory is your store of factual knowledge and the meanings of words. It also helps you recall nonverbal concepts and relationships between words and concepts. And while some aspects of memory may decline with age, semantic memory does not.