Physicians rely on bone mineral density testing as an important tool in assessing the risks for, and management of, the bone disease called osteoporosis. Although there are no guidelines for the frequency of repeating bone density tests, Medicare pays for screening every two years —without limiting the number of repeat tests, and regardless of the results of the patient's initial (or baseline) bone density scan.
As part of our commitment to improve the lives of older adults, we like to cull our resources and ask our senior care experts to share their expertise or advice on a number of senior health concerns by regularly contributing articles for our website and blog.
We recently pulled 50 of these articles together into a downloadable ebook, “ReAge Your Personal Health: A wellness guide for older adults,” which contains many of the articles featured on our main site and blog.
I've been at HSL 18 years and in that time, technology has grown in leaps and bounds! Think back....How many cell phones have you had in the past few years? How have they changed since the first phone you owned? Hearing aids have changed in similar ways.
In the past several years, hearing aid technology has gone through a radical transformation. Today’s hearing aids are state-of-the-art, highly effective, sleek, and sophisticated wearable electronics that can help people stay actively engaged on the job and in life. They are digital, wireless, can connect directly to smartphones and other electronic devices, and can be as discreet or as visible as the user likes. Today’s hearing aids are all about active lifestyles—they’re ageless.
Have you noticed that acupuncture has been appearing in the media more and more over the past couple of years? Articles have graced the black and white pages of The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Boston Globe and color spreads appeared in Time and Newsweek magazines. Television talk shows abound with info on how acupuncture is good for back pain, knee pain, and the nausea of chemotherapy.
Acupuncture – which is one part of Chinese Medicine, has been used around the world for the past 2000 years. Originating in China, the use of very fine stainless steel needles inserted into specific points over the entire body has become a treatment choice for millions of people.
Getting outside and moving is an important part of a healthy lifestyle at any age. When exploring all that New England has to offer in the summer, it’s important to take steps to avoid Lyme disease.
Lyme disease is commonly spread through the bite of infected ticks that can be found in places like your backyard or outdoor recreational areas. Whether you have been out walking in tall dune grass at the beach, or the grassy area by the playing field at a grandchild’s soccer game, it’s important to check for ticks.
We all know that vaccines are an important piece of preventive health care for children. But did you know that immunizations are equally important as we get older?
The Centers for Disease Control reports that each year, about 42,000 adults in the U.S. die from illnesses that could have been prevented by vaccines. Chronic conditions like diabetes and heart disease can put seniors at greater risk for becoming seriously ill. As a geriatrician with HSL Medical Group, my primary goal is to help seniors avoid health complications that can happen as we get older – and vaccines are one important tool.
I often hear my patients say, “If only people spoke more clearly, I wouldn’t have as much trouble hearing.” Although damage to the hair cells of the inner ear does cause some inherent distortion in the received speech signal, it is true that clear spoken speech CAN make listening easier for hearing impaired people. Research suggests that in less than an hour, partners of people with a hearing loss can improve their ability to be understood by 40% or more, even in noisy backgrounds. So, what IS “clear speech”?
• Speaking slightly slower, with more precise pronunciation
It’s one of the most simple, but important things you can do for your body – drink plenty of water. Next to oxygen, water is the most significant nutrient your body needs to function properly. It makes up nearly 70 percent of the human body and plays a vital role in nearly every bodily function, including regulating temperature and carrying nutrients throughout the body.
I often remind my patients of ways to stay hydrated because without proper fluid intake, the body becomes dehydrated. Untreated severe dehydration can lead to seizures, permanent brain damage, and even death. Seniors must take extra precautions because their thirst mechanism is not as sensitive as it once was and they are often not aware that they have become dangerously dehydrated.
With summer upon us, we tend to hear a great deal about healthy eating and getting in tip-top shape. There is no shortage of diets, drinks and pills being marketed, all promising slim waistlines for the summer season. But the truth is – healthy eating isn’t limited to a particular time of year. It’s a lifestyle and one that is incredibly important as we age.
Many studies indicate that people with untreated hearing loss may be at an increased risk of depression. Further, when these people use hearing aids, they experience significant improvements in quality of life and a decrease in depressive symptoms. A study published in the Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics examined the effects of hearing aids on cognitive function and depressive signs in people 65 and older. Researchers found that after three months of using a hearing aid, all patients showed significant improvement in their psychosocial and cognitive conditions.