Successful Aging

The University of Southern California has been studying successful aging for years, and the New York Times just ran a great article on it.

Use your brain.
Stay social.
Have good DNA.

Synopsis -
At the Bridge Table, Clues to a Lucid Old Age
Published: May 22, 2009 The New York Times
A study of people 90 and over without a trace of dementia has begun to alter understandings of the aging brain.

Read on...

Senior Transportation Resource

I just found out about a national Web site on senior transportation - the National Center on Senior Transportation (NCST). It's run by Easter Seals and has all sorts of links to organizations nationwide that help seniors with transportation and other needs. They also run seminars. Check it out. Visit the site and look around.

Their mission is:
to increase transportation options for older adults and enhance their ability to live more independently within their communities throughout the United States.

Alzheimer's Project - TV Documentary

The New York Times has an excellent review of the Alzheimer's Project -- a TV documentary. Here are a link and synopsis. The review also lists resources for people to tap on the Internet.

The Disease That Steals Your Self
Published: May 8, 2009
“The Alzheimer’s Project,” a deeply affecting documentary series on HBO that begins on Sunday, seeks to comfort and encourage those affected by the disease.

How Can We Get Seniors to Accept Help?

I heard a great story the other day from the son of a woman who is 80+. He and his sister wanted their mom to have a local safety net. They finally turned to one of the Aging in Place - Beacon Hill Village type organizations. The siblings bought mom a membership.

The mom loves the membership because people with the organization help her with the small but annoying stuff of life. How to find someone to help with shopping. How to get someone to take care of her dog when she goes on vacation. Even though she says she doesn't want help and wants independence, she is slowly seeking help from her friends and from this organization. It's a long, slow build.

With aging in place, the idea of "if you build it, they will come" doesn't work immediately. It takes a long time for the comfort factor to come into play and for people to join and ask for help.

Do you have an opinion on this? Other stories?

Too Much Junk Mail From AARP

The amount of junk mail in my regular mailbox has dwindled. But email is free, and the amount of junk, especially from AARP, is beginning to bug me. AARP is always trying to get me to contact my state or federal legislators about some sort of legislation. Or they send me the recipe of the week or the trip of a lifetime. I haven't shut them off because I feel that I need to know what's going on with seniors for my volunteer work with Aging in Place in Darien. So I just delete the emails.

But really, do they need to send so many? I wonder what other people feel about this?

AARP has some very useful information and services. I'm very impressed with their travel services. But I wonder about all the lobbying they do with their membership about health care and other senior issues. I tend to pick and choose what I'll bug my Congressman or Senator about.

How do you feel?