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Pictured is a woman that has fallen
Pictured is a woman that has fallen

Fall Prevention:

January 24, 2023

Fall prevention is no laughing matter, especially for our aging population. As we get older, our risk of falling increases, which can lead to serious injuries and even death. But just because it's serious doesn't mean we can't have a little fun discussing it.

First and foremost, let's talk about the importance of exercise. Now, I know what you're thinking, "But Doctor A, I don't want to break a sweat just to avoid falling." Well, I have good news for you, my friend. You don't have to break a sweat to stay active. You can start by taking a walk around the block, or even just stretching in your living room. The key is to stay moving and keep those joints lubricated.

Next, let's talk about footwear. I know it's tempting to rock those stylish high heels, but trust me, they're not worth the risk. Opt for comfortable, slip-resistant shoes with good traction. And if you're going to be walking on uneven surfaces, make sure to wear shoes with good ankle support.

Now, let's talk about the elephant in the room: vision. As we age, our vision can deteriorate, making it harder to see potential hazards. Make sure to get your eyes checked regularly and wear your glasses or contacts if you need them.

Another important factor to consider is your home environment. Make sure to clear any potential tripping hazards, such as loose rugs or electrical cords. Also, be sure to contact your local handyman and install handrails in the bathroom and on any staircases.

Lastly, let's talk about balance and strength. These are two key components in preventing falls. You can improve your balance by doing exercises such as tai chi or yoga. And if you're looking to improve your strength, consider contacting our SLMC hospital's Physical Therapy services for a quick consultation on simple exercises such as squats or lunges.

In conclusion, fall prevention is important for our aging population, but it doesn't have to be boring. By incorporating exercise, proper footwear, good vision, a safe home environment, balance and strength training, we can all enjoy our golden years with a little less worry.

So, let's take a step in the right direction and start preventing falls today! And remember, age is just a number, and falling is not in your future.

Home Safety:

February 7, 2023

Home is where the heart is, but for seniors, it can also be a place of potential hazards. From tripping on throw rugs to burning the roast in the oven, it's important to take steps to ensure the safety of our aging loved ones. But let's face it, safety can be a turkey-dry topic. So, let's spice things up with a little humor and some common-sense tips to make home a safer place for seniors.

First things first, let's talk about the elephant in the room: the throw rug in the hallway. Those little buggers can be a real trip hazard, especially for seniors with balance issues. But, instead of getting rid of them altogether, why not try a little DIY magic? Take some double-sided tape and stick it to the bottom of the rug. Voila! No more tripping hazards. And, if you're feeling extra crafty, you can even paint a little bullseye on the floor for added fun.

Next, let's talk about the kitchen. It's the heart of the home, but it can also be a dangerous place for seniors. From sharp knives to hot stovetops, there are plenty of hazards to watch out for. One simple solution is to keep frequently used items within easy reach. This way, seniors won't have to stretch or reach for items, reducing the risk of falling or burning themselves. And, if you're feeling extra fancy, you can even label the cabinets and drawers with pictures, so seniors know exactly where to find what they need.

Bathrooms can be another tricky spot for seniors. With slick floors and hard surfaces, it's important to take steps to prevent falls. One simple solution is to add non-slip mats or decals to the floor. Another idea is to install grab bars in strategic locations, such as near the toilet and in the shower. And, if you're feeling playful, you can even add a rubber duck to the bathtub for added entertainment.

Finally, it's important to keep an eye on medications. Many seniors take multiple medications, and it can be easy to forget which ones to take and when. One solution is to invest in a pill organizer and bring it to your next visit at SLMC's family medicine clinic. These handy little devices allow seniors to sort their pills by day and time, so they know exactly when to take them. And, if you're feeling creative, you can even decorate the pill organizer with stickers or paint for added fun.

In conclusion, making the home a safer place for seniors is an important task, but it doesn't have to be boring. By using humor, a little creativity, and help from your local hardware store, you can make simple changes to your home that will greatly improve the safety and well-being of our aging loved ones.

A safe home is a happy home, and a happy senior make for happy family members and a healthy community.

Heart Health

March 7, 2023

Heart health is no laughing matter, especially for aging seniors. But that doesn't mean we can't have a little fun while discussing the importance of taking care of our tickers!

Let's start with the basics. As we age, our risk for heart disease increases. This is because our blood vessels and heart can stiffen, making it harder for blood to flow. Our cholesterol levels can also rise, clogging up those vessels and increasing the risk of a heart attack or stroke.

But don't panic just yet! There are plenty of things we can do to keep our hearts healthy as we age.

First and foremost, we need to move our bodies. Exercise is key to maintaining a healthy heart. It doesn't have to be anything fancy - a brisk walk around the block or a gentle yoga class will do the trick - Ask our SLMC Physical Therapists for a routine exercise that fits you and get moving regularly.

Next up, let's talk diet. We've all heard the saying, "You are what you eat." Well, if we want to be heart healthy, we need to be eating heart healthy foods. This means cutting down on fat and cholesterol, and loading up on fruits and vegetables, using smaller portion sizes. No one ever had a heart attack from eating too many carrots!

Smoking is another big no-no when it comes to heart health. If you're still smoking, it's time to quit. And if you're not a smoker, good for you! Keep it up, and steer clear of second-hand smoke.

Stress can also take a toll on our hearts, so it's important to find ways to relax and de-stress. This can be anything from meditation to knitting to playing cards with friends. Just find something you enjoy, and make time for it in your life.

Finally, let's talk about the importance of seeing a healthcare professional regularly. Our medical professionals at SLMC can help us keep an eye on our blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and weight. They can also help us make lifestyle changes that will benefit our hearts.

So, there you have it - the basics of heart health for aging seniors. It's not rocket science, but it does take a little effort. But, trust us, it's worth it. After all, a healthy heart means a healthy you, and who doesn't want that?

In conclusion, aging doesn't mean the end of the road for our hearts. With a little bit of effort, we can all keep our hearts ticking for many years to come. So, let's get moving, eat well, quit smoking, de-stress, and see our SLMC healthcare professionals regularly. Your heart will thank you for it.

Managing Hypertension with Humor

By: Dr. David Alcindor
March 15, 2023

Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a common condition that affects many older adults, those suffering from what I call "a case of too many birthdays."

While it may not sound like a laughing matter, incorporating humor into the management of hypertension can actually be a helpful tool for aging adults.

First, let's take a look at some of the ways that hypertension can be managed. Regular visits at your SLMC medical office, to test your blood pressure accurately.

Also, lifestyle changes, such as diet and exercise, are also important in managing hypertension - ask SLMC's physical therapy office for simple guidelines.

Now, how can humor fit into this equation? Well, for starters, humor can help to reduce stress and tension, which are major contributing factors to hypertension.

Laughing releases endorphins, the "feel-good" chemicals in the brain, which can help to lower blood pressure.
Incorporating humor into your daily routine can be as simple as watching a comedy show on TV (remember the Golden Girls, or I Love Lucille shows?).

Perusing through the humor section and finding a comedy story to laugh with can also be a fun way to combine exercise and humor by visiting our Kemmerer library.

Another way to use humor to manage hypertension is by finding the humor in everyday situations. For example, if you're struggling to stick to a healthy diet, try not to take it so seriously. Instead, try to find the humor in it. Take a lighthearted approach and remember that no one is perfect.

One more way to use humor to manage hypertension is by having fun with friends and family. Plan a game night, or a movie night, or a cooking night, or a laughter night. This can help to take your mind off of your hypertension and allow you to relax and enjoy yourself.

In conclusion, hypertension is a serious condition that affects many older adults, but incorporating humor into the management of hypertension can be a helpful tool. Laughing releases endorphins, which can help lower blood pressure, and incorporating humor into your daily routine can help to reduce stress and tension.

So, don't be afraid to add a little humor to your life - it just might help keep your blood pressure under control, and keep me, your doctor, away.