Don’t Fear Aging: Improve Your Mindset to Age  Better

Don’t Fear Aging: Improve Your Mindset to Age Better

Health content, Prevention
Did you know that changing how you think can increase your lifespan, make you healthier and improve your memory, too? It’s true! No matter how old you are, positive change is always possible. Mindset matters! Two beliefs to increase longevity Being optimistic doesn’t mean being a Pollyanna in your view of the world. It does mean having: A general expectation that good things are coming.A belief that you have control over important outcomes. Research indicates that holding these two beliefs can help you live 11-15% longer! Grow your optimism If you don’t have these two beliefs, don’t worry! You can teach your brain to think differently by reframing experiences that feel negative. Start by writing down an experience that carries negative emotions. Read what you wrote. Then, rewrite the experience…
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When Physical Therapy Sessions End, You’re In  Charge of Continued Recovery

When Physical Therapy Sessions End, You’re In Charge of Continued Recovery

Health content, Prevention
Discharge instructions are not always something we take seriously. Sometimes they just end up in the recycle bin. But paying more attention to the post-treatment weeks can contribute to your full, pain-free recovery, according to Dr. Patrick Donovan, owner and physical therapist at Heather Lane Physical Therapy in Denver. “You may be thinking, ‘I finished physical therapy, so I’m done,’” Dr. Donovan says. “But the movement strategies and exercises you learned in your PT sessions can do you a world of good even after you’ve finished the formal treatment.” How long to continue the exercises? The time frame for continuing to do the exercises depends on: The length of your PT course. According to Dr. Donovan, the rule of thumb is that the longer you were in physical therapy, the…
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Down With Depression! Physical  Therapy Can Help You Stay Out of the Dark

Down With Depression! Physical Therapy Can Help You Stay Out of the Dark

Health content
Depression can feel as if you're in a dense fog that covers you like a smothering blanket, and it's become very common among seniors. More than 6.5 million American adults older than 65 deal with depression on a daily basis. But even if you're dealing with loss or a medical condition, depression doesn't have to be part of normal aging. How can you throw off that blanket, break through from the fog and let the sunshine back into your life? Symptoms of depression in older adults When you have depression in your later years, it can keep you from interacting in the ways that have been familiar to you. Symptoms of depression in older adults can be different from those in younger people. They include: Social withdrawalMemory problemsWeight lossIrritabilityConfusionTrouble sleepingPhysical…
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Keeping Your Body and Brain Healthy Into Your 90s

Keeping Your Body and Brain Healthy Into Your 90s

Health content
When it comes to life expectancy and how good you feel as you age, there are many factors at play. You can't control your genetics, but you can give yourself a big advantage by making healthy lifestyle choices. Get smart about your diet, activity level, daily routine and habits to increase your chances of staying healthy into your 90s. Steps to staying healthy longer If you want to boost your chances of living a longer, healthier life, some of the most important steps you can take are lifestyle changes: Quit smoking.Take all your medications as prescribed by your doctor.Get at least 150 minutes of exercise a week.Eat a heart-healthy diet that includes lots of vegetables, whole grains and lean protein but limited amounts of red meat, fat, and sugar.Drink in…
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5 Simple Ways (Not Exercises!) to Prevent Falls When You’re an Older Adult

5 Simple Ways (Not Exercises!) to Prevent Falls When You’re an Older Adult

Balance, Health content
Nearly 30 million falls are recorded every year among seniors, resulting in more than 27,000 deaths. Unfortunately, fall death rates are on the rise, increasing 30 percent between 2007 and 2016. But falling doesn't have to be an accepted of aging.  You may already be doing balance exercises and making sure you get regular physical activity. But did you know that there are other things you could be doing that do not involve exercise but still can significantly decrease your risk of falling? Here are our top five. 1Start a fall prevention plan with your doctor The first step in preventing falls is scheduling an appointment with your physician. Go over your medications with the doctor to determine whether any of them might be increasing your risk of falling. Also…
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Sexual Function in Older Women and the Role of Physical Therapy

Sexual Function in Older Women and the Role of Physical Therapy

Health content, knowledge
Every aging woman who has experienced menopause knows that it changes her body, from bone loss and a higher risk of heart disease to bladder leakage, also known as urinary incontinence. Menopause can change your body's ability to function sexually as well, including your level of sexual desire. Physical changes that affect sex Some of the physical changes that make sex difficult are predictable and typically occur post-menopause. Being aware means that you can plan for these changes and address them so you can continue to enjoy sex long after menopause has brought you to a new stage of life. Common predictable changes include: Vaginal atrophy. The walls of the vagina become thinner and drier, making them more prone to inflammation. This can make sex painful.Urinary tract symptoms. Some women…
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Sexual Function in Older Men and the Role of Physical Therapy

Sexual Function in Older Men and the Role of Physical Therapy

Health content, knowledge
Men over the age of 40 know that testosterone gradually declines as they age. Fear not—this is perfectly normal. Still, sexual dysfunction causes side effects that can be distressing for men as well as their sexual partners. If you're an older man, you should be able to experience healthy sexual function for many years to come, although it may take some support at different stages. What can men expect as they age? The natural decline of testosterone in men causes decreased testicular function. In daily life, this often manifests as: Lower sexual interest in general.Feeling less arousal or requiring more stimulation to get aroused.Less success at achieving an erection and ejaculating. More aging complications Chronic diseases like diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure add to performance difficulties. On top…
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Sarcopenia: What Age-Related Muscle Loss Does to You (And How to Overcome It)

Sarcopenia: What Age-Related Muscle Loss Does to You (And How to Overcome It)

Health content
Getting older can feel as if it's about all things new: new aches and pains, new medications, new conditions. While most seniors are aware of new symptoms relating to diseases like dementia, arthritis and diabetes, many don't know much about sarcopenia, the medical term for naturally occurring, age-related muscle loss. According to the International Osteoporosis Foundation, sarcopenia typically starts at about age 40, but the patients we see in physical therapy tend to be in their 60s. Sarcopenia falls under the umbrella of "clinical geriatric syndromes," which refers to conditions that coincide with advancing age but do not have a single cause. It can correlate with a sedentary lifestyle, an unbalanced diet, and chronic inflammation. How age-related muscle loss affects seniors Studies show that low muscle mass contributes to mobility…
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Fight Hunchback with 3 Posture Exercises to Help Straighten Your Spine

Fight Hunchback with 3 Posture Exercises to Help Straighten Your Spine

back, Exercise, Health content
Are you noticing a hump forming on your spine? Is your head a little in front of your shoulders? Hyperkyphosis is the condition that causes the hump and general stooping. Whether you're afraid of developing hyperkyphosis or aging has already begun the progression of the condition, it's time to fight back! When hyperkyphosis is not treated, you may start having trouble performing ordinary tasks like bending, bathing, getting out of a chair or even walking. The spine comprises three regions – cervical, thoracic, and lumbar – and each area has a natural curve. Kyphosis occurs naturally in the thoracic portion of the spine, which is in the middle and includes your ribs and chest plate. Hyperkyphosis exaggerates that curve. Occurring commonly with advanced aging, hyperkyphosis is associated with low bone mass, vertebral…
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Get Wet! Joining a Pool Can Help You Stay Fit

Get Wet! Joining a Pool Can Help You Stay Fit

Health content, Prevention
Determined to improve your fitness for the New Year? You may be considering joining a gym, taking some skiing weekends, starting yoga or simply resolving to take a daily walk. Don't forget to check out your nearest indoor pool—or outdoor pool if you live in a warm enough climate. People who suffer from a number of conditions can benefit from swimming and other water exercises, according to Dr. Patrick Donovan, owner of Heather Lane Physical Therapy in Denver. “When our bodies are submerged in water, we become lighter,” Dr. Donovan explains. “This lightness, coupled with the natural resistance water places on movement, makes water exercise ideal for people who face issues related to strength, balance, sore joints or pain, even when the cause is a chronic condition such as arthritis…
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