Jan. 25, 2023
Florida's population is over 22 million, the third largest in the US, only behind California and Texas. But more people move to Florida every year than any other state. And estimates vary, but more than 200,000 people moved to Florida last year, which is a rate of about 600 new Floridians each and every day.
And nobody loves Florida more than seniors. Of all the people moving to the Sunshine State, about 40% are seniors looking to retire and spend their later years with us here in Florida.
Besides the great beaches, sunny weather, and friendly people, many seniors are attracted to Florida areas with great senior communities. The Top 5 are Lakewood Ranch, Ocala, The Villages, Tampa, and Port St. Lucie. Click here for the complete list of the 25 Best Places to Retire in Florida for 2023.
Senior living in Florida can be active and fulfilling as friends and family visit. But even the most active seniors experience the changes that come with aging.
Keeping your senior loved one active and engaged is the best way to ensure their continuing healthy lifestyle as they age.
But far too often, seniors neglect health issues, leading to a decline in their wellness.
As we age, even the healthiest bodies and minds undergo changes that can affect our overall health and well-being. According to the Mayo Clinic, some common changes as we age are stiffening of blood vessels, decreased bone density, and more sensitive digestion.
In their article "10 Myths About Aging," the National Institute of Health states that depression and loneliness are not a normal part of aging. Nor is it inevitable that all seniors eventually get dementia or have severe cognitive problems. The NIH also believes that exercise and physical activity contribute to a healthy aging process and a sedentary lifestyle does not.
But whatever you decide, awareness of developing health issues is the first step in maintaining the healthiest lifestyle possible as you age.
Below are the 5 Most Common Health Problems Neglected by Seniors. Help your senior loved ones address these issues now, so they can live their best and healthiest lives as they age.
Falls are a common and serious problem among seniors. Statistics show that one in four adults aged 65 and older will fall each year. And the CDC states that falls are the leading cause of death among seniors. Falls also cause serious injuries, such as broken bones and head trauma. Increasing falls lead to a decline in overall health and quality of life.
Assisted living communities can play a crucial role in preventing falls among residents by implementing several safety measures. To reduce fall risks, assisted living communities typically have non-slip flooring, handrails in common areas and residences, ample lighting, and other safety features.
Many medications cause side effects such as drowsiness, which can also increase the risk of falls. Staff members and professionals can reduce these risks by monitoring and managing seniors' medications.
Some memory issues seem natural as we grow older. But if your senior loved one is experiencing increasing memory issues, getting an evaluation is a good idea.
Memory concerns can cause anxiety for seniors and their families. Forgetting your keys is one thing. Eventually, forgetting where you live, who your family members are, or if you turned off the stove is another.
Families rightfully worry about dementia and Alzheimer's disease. Evaluation provides an objective measure of whether a person is cognitively impaired and can uncover treatable causes of decreased brain function, such as medication side effects or thyroid problems.
Most seniors never get dementia, but the risk increases with age. About 3% of those between the ages of 70-74 have dementia. But that number rises to 22% for those aged 85-89.
Determining the seriousness of cognition and memory issues is crucial if your senior loved one wants to age at home. For dementia diagnoses, assisted living communities with specialized memory care units can give your senior loved one the best care possible.
Unfortunately, depression is a common mental health issue among seniors. And it can have a significant impact on health and well-being. As people age, they may experience the loss of loved ones, physical limitations, and changes in their roles and social networks. These changes can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness, which can contribute to depression. Untreated depression can also lead to a decline in physical health, affecting sleep patterns, appetite, and energy levels.
An active senior can lead a richer and more fulfilling life, but often seniors live alone at home. This isolation and lack of community often cause many difficulties, including safety issues, loneliness, depression, and more.
Depression is a problem that is easily missed. It is important to spot and treat depression, as treatment can lead to greater involvement in social activities and a better quality of life overall. Assisted living communities provide social activities and a sense of community which can help alleviate depression and loneliness.
Surveys suggest that about 50% of adults aged 65 and over experience pain monthly. Persisting pain can lead to decreased social and physical activity, depression, and poor self-care.
Pain can also signify a new health problem or a chronic problem that is not being adequately managed. Assisted living communities have trained staff who can help manage pain and provide additional support and resources.
Conditions such as Parkinson's disease and multiple sclerosis can worsen with age and significantly impact the quality of a senior's life.
It is essential to work closely with healthcare providers to manage symptoms and maintain independence as much as possible. Assisted living communities have staff trained to manage chronic conditions and provide additional support and resources.
Florida senior living is about enjoying your best life and aging as healthily as possible. If your senior loved one is neglecting their health issues, it is best to take action now.
If you notice falls, pain, memory issues, loneliness, isolation, or depression, it is time to get professional help. And if your senior loved one has a chronic condition like Parkinson’s or Alzheimer's, finding the best care possible is crucial.
However, deciding if your senior loved one can age at home or needs qualified assisted living can be overwhelming.
Let us help.
We are a Florida-based company with expert knowledge of the Florida senior market. We know how to help with the move to assisted living while ensuring a smooth transition into the new community.
While senior options can seem confusing, this is all we do.
Florida Senior Consulting helps seniors decide their next best steps so they can live their best lives with safety and security.
We have certified staff, licensed nurse advocates, and decades of experience in the field.
Senior living should be on your terms, and the choice should always be yours.
Call us, and we will answer all your questions and help you decide what is best for you or your senior loved one.
For peace of mind, call us at (941) 661-6196 or visit us at FloridaSeniorConsulting.com.
This time of year is all about family gatherings, holiday treats, and reflections on another year past. But behind these seasonal delights lurks a menace poised to pounce on your health and happiness: the flu.Amid the recent concerns over COVID-19 variants and RSV, the flu doesnt get as much coverage as it once did. And for most people, an attack of the flu or influenza is just a miserable inconvenience. But for others, especially those ages 65 and older, the flu can be a life-threatening affliction. So, as you get into the swing of the holidays, its important to remember the following tips so you can avoid the frightful flu!Wash and be watchfulAccording to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the flu virus can survive on some surfaces for up to 48 hours. Just imagine how many surfaces you touch in two days! After spending time in public, its important to wash your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based sanitizer. And always refrain from touching your eyes, nose and face to avoid infection, from the flu or otherwise.Pay attention to people around you when you are out in public. If someone is showing signs of a sickness, such as sneezing, coughing, or a runny nose, respectfully avoid direct contact with that person. And never eat or drink after anyone, even friends or relatives.Stay fortifiedYour immune system is your bodys security system against illness. But many people forget that a healthy lifestyle can positively impact your bodys defenses. To help your immune system function at its best, you should:Achieve and/or keep a healthy weightEat a vitamin-rich diet high in fruits and vegetablesEstablish an exercise regimenGet the recommended seven to nine hours of sleep each nightManage your blood pressureStay hydratedBe wary of immune system boosters and other trendy health supplements. Many of these havent been tested by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and could lead to further health complications. Always talk to your doctor before adding any supplements to your diet.Get vaccinatedA recent study shows that the flu vaccine could reduce your risk for a flu infection by 40 to 60 percent. And those who still get the flu after receiving the vaccine are more likely to experience mild, non-life-threatening symptoms. Talk to your doctor or visit your local vaccination clinic to learn more about the flu vaccine.Schedule regular health screenings so you can be aware of your condition and how susceptible you may be to infections. And always consult your doctor before making any changes to your diet or exercise routine.This is the time of year for gratitude and good cheer. Dont let a flu infection foil your holiday joy!To learn more please call Life Care Center of Pueblo 719-564-2000
We all have emotions that can be difficult to understand. But those occasional blues can turn into something more serious if they are not addressed.Around six million Americans over the age of 65 suffer from depression, but only 10 percent seek professional help for it. Depression can be a part of aging, but prolonged depressive symptoms should not be ignored. Below are ways you can recognize and treat depression in yourself or a loved one to keep your later years truly golden.A first look at depressionDepression is recognized as feelings of sadness, helplessness and hopelessness that can affect ones ability to function. The National Institutes of Health cites three main forms of depression:Minor depressiona milder form that lasts two weeks or less.Major depressiona severe form that can last up to six months while disrupting life functions, such as working, sleeping, eating and finding fulfillment.Dysthymic disorder (dysthymia)a form of depression with moderate symptoms that typically last 2 years or more.Depression is often linked to genetics, brain chemistry and stress levels. And the The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention highlight the connection between depression and other illnesses. Seniors are at a higher risk since about 80 percent have chronic health problems that can cause stress and trigger depressive symptoms.And because depression shares symptoms with other conditions, seniors are often misdiagnosed. It is important to recognize the signs of depression to treat it effectively.Depression varies from person to person, but common symptoms include:Bodily pains, headaches and digestive issues that lingerDecreased interest in activities once enjoyedFeelings of sadness, hopelessness and emptinessImpaired ability to focus, recall details and make decisionsReduced appetite or overeatingThoughts of self-harm and/or suicideTrouble sleeping or sleeping too muchKeep in mind that family history, chronic pain, medical conditions, such as diabetes, cancer, dementia, hypertension, and medication side effects can increase your risk of depression. Knowing these risk factors and the above symptoms may help you shed light on how treatment can help you.Treating DepressionAfter recognizing signs of depression, you should educate yourself to get a deeper understanding of your situation. Then talk to friends and family members. Loved ones who are aware of your problem can offer support and advice.With friends and family backing you, talk to a physician about what you are experiencing. Your doctor can conduct exams, tests and interviews to determine possible causes. Be as open as possible to ensure the best treatment.Think of treatment for depression in three stages. The first stage involves lifestyle changes. Take a look at your life and see what you can improve on your own and with the help of friends and family. Surround yourself with people you find inspiring and supportive.Revisit activities youve always loved; that spark of enjoyment youve been missing may show up like an old pal. Try relaxing or engaging activities, such as gardening, exercise, bird watching, reading, and fishing. In the second stage, you might seek the help of a counselor or psychologist through a referral from your doctor. In this type of therapy, you can learn to recognize and change behaviors or thought patterns that can contribute to depression.Lastly, an antidepressant may be necessary after you have tried counseling and changing your lifestyle. If you are prescribed an antidepressant, be aware of the possible side effects and how the drug may interact with your current medications.While treating your depression, stay in communication with your doctor to let them know how treatment is working for you.Recognizing the signs of depression can help improve your life and the lives of others. Dont let depression diminish your quality of life. You have the power to keep your years truly golden.To learn more please call Life Care Center of Pueblo at 719-564-2000
Parkinson's Disease: Causes, Symptoms, and TreatmentFeb. 1, 2023What Is Parkinson's Disease?Parkinson's disease is a progressive neurological disorder that affects the nervous system and causes uncontrollable movements such as shaking, muscle stiffness, and balance difficulties. Parkinson's disease is the 2nd most common neurodegenerative disorder in the United States, behind Alzheimers disease. There are over 10 million people in the world living with Parkinsons, with approximately 1 million in the United States. This number is expected to increase to 1.2 million by the year 2030. Parkinson's disease is especially common in Florida. In fact, Florida has the highest percentage of the state population with Parkinsons. And, Florida has the second highest number of people with Parkinsons out of all the states, with 64,000, only behind California. The main risk factor for Parkinsons is older age, and people over 65 make up more than 21% of Floridas population. Therefore, the disease is very prevalent in the state of Florida.Parkinson's Disease CausesPhoto Credit: Cloud HospitalParkinsons symptoms occur when certain nerve cells in the brain break down or die. Specifically, the part of the brain that makes the chemical messenger dopamine will begin to die. When this happens, levels of dopamine decrease. A decrease in dopamine causes atypical brain activity, which in turn leads to impaired muscle movements. Symptoms of Parkinsons begin to appear when dopamine levels have dropped 60-80%. Low levels of norepinephrine, a brain substance that regulates dopamine, and the presence of abnormal proteins called Lewy bodies, have also been linked with Parkinsons.The exact cause of Parkinsons is unknown, but genetic and environmental factors appear to trigger the disease. One risk factor for developing Parkinson's disease is age, as it usually appears around 60 and rarely affects people under 40. In addition, the disease is 1.5 times more prevalent in men than women. Head injuries and a family history of Parkinsons can also be risk factors. Finally, exposure to certain environmental toxins, such as herbicides and pesticides, may slightly increase the risk of developing the disease, as well.Parkinson's Disease SymptomsSymptoms of Parkinson's disease come on slowly and can be different for everyone. Symptoms frequently start on one side of the body and usually remain worse on that side, even after appearing on the other side.Early signs may be mild and unnoticeable, often beginning several years before motor problems appear. Some of the earliest signs of Parkinsons include a decreased sense of smell, constipation, changes in voice and handwriting, and hunched posture.In addition to these early symptoms, the primary motor problems of people with Parkinsons include tremors, slowed movement, muscle stiffness, and impaired balance, often leading to falls.Some of the secondary symptoms of Parkinson's disease include small, shuffling steps known as Parkinsonian Gait; blank facial expressions; muffled, quiet speech; and loss of automatic movements, including blinking and swinging arms when walking.Other symptoms associated with Parkinsons include sleep disturbances, flaky and oily patches on the skin called seborrheic dermatitis, increased melanoma risk, anxiety, depression, attention and memory difficulties, and psychosis. Parkinson's Disease TreatmentAlthough there is no cure for Parkinson's disease, some treatments are available:MedicationCertain medications can significantly control the symptoms of Parkinson's disease. Medications that increase or substitute for dopamine can help people manage difficulties with tremors, movement, and walking.The efficacy of these medications can decrease over time. And, the side effects of some medications may outweigh the benefits in the later stages of the disease. A medical professional should be involved in making personalized treatment plans using these medications.SurgerySurgery can be the next option for cases of Parkinsons that do not respond to medications, therapy, and lifestyle changes. One of the most common surgical interventions for Parkinsons is deep brain stimulation, or DBS. During this procedure, electrodes are implanted into specific parts of the brain. A generator then sends electrical pulses to the brain with the expected result of reducing Parkinsons symptoms. A newer, pump-delivered therapy called Duopa is another surgical option for treating Parkinsons. During this procedure, a pump is placed in the body and delivers a combination of different medications to the small intestine.Speak with your doctor if you think one of these procedures could be right for you or a loved one.ConclusionParkinson's disease can be severe, especially in its later stages. However, there are ways to make the disease more manageable and live an active, positive life.For people diagnosed with Parkinsons, assisted living might be a smart choice to manage symptoms and get proper care.If you or your loved one with Parkinson's disease are considering assisted living, be sure to ask plenty of questions on your tour about how the community handles the disease. Find out if the staff members, nurses, and caregivers are trained and experienced in caring for people with Parkinsons.Finding the right senior care can be overwhelming, especially with a medical condition like Parkinsons that often requires specialized care. Let Florida Senior Consulting help.Our certified senior advisors and professional nurses have expert knowledge of the senior living options in Florida. Finding you the best care possible is our specialty.Whether you are looking for home health care or senior living options, we will personally help you find the care you need based on your situation.We believe senior living should be on your terms, and the choice should always be yours.Call (941) 661-6196 today, or visit our website FloridaSeniorConsulting.com to get started.