Exploring The Importance Of Kid's Eye Exams

Aging And Technology: Useful Solutions To Advanced Age Problems

As one ages, less noticeable ailments can become bigger challenges over time. Subtle aches and pains can hinder movement, or slight hearing loss can become quite a nuisance. Luckily, many technological solutions have evolved to meet the needs of people in their advanced years. Here are some useful technologies that you may want to consider for yourself or your loved ones in advanced years.

Personal Care Technology for Senior Citizens

High-Tech Hearing Aids  

Previously simple devices used to amplify sound, hearing aids, like those at Pacific Hearing Care, have become “technology wearables.” They can be synced to smartphones so that the user can adjust sound, stream music, or even have a phone conversation through their hearing aids. With certain types of hearing aids, one can even adjust acoustics, as well as maximize or minimize sounds coming from various directions.

Some hearing aids may have features to accommodate for soft speech or to create a more natural sound. Furthermore, hearing aids have evolved so that they can be programmed in advance through geo-targeting. This can adjust to shifts in sounds according to location—such as the library, the park, or gym class.

Electronic Toothbrushes 

Also a seemingly simple product, electronic toothbrushes have settings and features that can meet many needs of senior citizens. For example, some electronic toothbrushes have wide, easy-to-grip handles and soft bristles. In addition, electronic toothbrush settings may offer massage and brushing at various intensities. These features can be especially appealing to those suffering from arthritis or gum sensitivity.

At-Home Comfort: a Click or Command Away

As one gets older, it can be more difficult to get around or manage daily tasks. Now, people can benefit from remotes that are voice-activated to turn on or off features all around the house. Some remotes or switch pads also have large buttons, so that one can easily turn on or off the lights, the alarm system, or music. Other types of technology solutions include devices that enhance  voices over the phone. Also, senior citizens can enjoy listening to audio books through various devices, such as at their computers with tech savvy headphones.

Socializing, Learning, and Communicating Online

While computers and the Internet can sometimes be intimidating to older people, various software solutions and interfaces can help. For example, easy-to-use computer interfaces can allow senior citizens to click large, easy-to-find buttons on their desktop—such as e-mail, chat, video conferencing, and web browsing. These features on streamlined, simplified desktops can make using computers a lot less frustrating for older people. Once online, senior citizens may enjoy learning new topics, reading blogs, discovering new apps, and participate in social networking.

It’s an exciting time to be a senior citizen, with so many technological developments. Seniors can enjoy wearable technologies that facilitate ease of hearing and communication. They can improve their personal are regimes and get tasks with the click of a button. In addition, people in their advanced years can enjoy learning and keeping in touch with others through many online tools.

Learn More

Neurotic Over Diabetic Neuropathy? Natural Skin Moisturizers You Can Make At Home

As a person with diabetes, you are most likely in the midst of many important lifestyle changes. From increased exercise and a healthier diet to the addition of insulin shots or other medications, living with diabetes is manageable, especially with professional diabetic foot care (from practitioners such as Michael Scanlon DPM).

Unfortunately, diabetic neuropathy is the most common complication in diabetic patients. Due to the excessive blood sugar in the body, damage to the nerves in your limbs can occur. Neuropathy causes numbness and discomfort, but can also lead to serious medical conditions and the loss of a limb without treatment. Thankfully, moisturizing the skin on your hands, legs, and feet will improve the blood circulation of your limbs to prevent neuropathy. If you worry about the possibility of developing this diabetic condition, use this guide to create natural skin moisturizers at home.

Coconut Oil

Adding coconut oil to your daily diet help regulates blood sugar levels, but it is also an effective skin moisturizer. Complete the following steps to moisturize skin, improve blood circulation to your limbs, and reduce your risk of neuropathy:

Each night, bathe as normal. Make sure to dry off completely with a clean towel.

Massage a few teaspoon of coconut oil on your arms, hands, legs, and feet.

After 15 minutes of massaging the oil into your skin, put on a pair of breathable, moisture-wicking socks to wear while you sleep.

Vitamin E

Visit a local grocery, mass-market retailer, or department store and you will find an enormous selection of cosmetics, beauty products, and toiletries that advertise the addition of vitamin E. While common in most lotions and moisturizers, you may not be familiar with its health benefits.

Due to its antioxidant properties, vitamin E increases blood circulation and strengthens capillary walls. In addition, it heals dry, scarred, or burned skin by absorbing into the outer layer of your skin. To prevent neuropathy from setting in, combine the following ingredients to make a natural skin moisturizer at home:

  • 1 Capsule of Vitamin E – 400IU
  • 4 Ounces of Mineral Oil
  • 4 Ounces of Shea Butter
  • ¼ Teaspoon of Tea Tree Oil

Pour the mineral oil and shea butter into a bowl. Mix with a spoon.  Pierce the Vitamin E capsule with a safety pin and empty the liquid into the bowl.  Add the tea tree oil and mix before pouring into a clean, empty bottle.

After bathing, dry off and apply a few teaspoons to your hands and feet. Allow the lotion to soak in completely before pulling on a pair of clean socks.

Moisturizing your skin is important for everyone, but diabetics require detailed care for their skin. Using this guide on natural skin moisturizers, you can prevent the onset of diabetic neuropathy.

Learn More

Ask For A Referral To An Orthopedic Specialist: That Pain In Your Feet May Be Due To A Herniated Disc

If you are suffering with pain in your feet when you walk, the problem may not be an actual problem with your feet, but due to a herniated disc in your back. In order to see a specialist, most insurance companies require a referral from your primary care physician. To get to the bottom of your feet problem fastest, ask to see an orthopedic specialist. If the problem is a herniated disc, you will have a few options for treatments that will alleviate the pain.

Medications

If you have a single herniated disc and the pain is not severe or disrupting your daily activities too much, you may be prescribed extra-strength anti-inflammatory medications. While this is not a cure for the problem, it will allow you to go about your day with little to no pain.

In most cases, anti-inflammatory drugs are used in conjunction with other treatments or until a more permanent treatment can be determined. If you have multiple herniated discs or the pain is severe, you may also be given a narcotic pain reliever until the problem can be completely resolved.

Exercise and Spinal Manipulation

Exercises to strengthen the spinal column and give it more flexibility are used to try to force the herniated disc back into place. The orthopedic specialist will usually incorporate manual manipulation of the spine to try to help move the disc too. Anti-inflammatory medications will be needed to help with any additional pain from the treatment. They also help to reduce the swelling of the disc so it will slip back into place.

Surgery

When there is no improvement in the herniated disc with nonsurgical treatments, an orthopedic surgeon will recommend surgery. Typically, the doctor will wait until the nonsurgical treatments have been taking place for four to six weeks before recommending the procedure. There are a couple of different surgical  procedures.

  • Lumbar decompression surgery involves the removal of only the herniated portion of the disc.
  • Anterior or posterior cervical decompression is the removal of the entire disc. The spine is fused together where the disc was to keep the space open and keep it from collapsing.

The ultimate goal for treatment of a herniated disc is not merely relieving the pain, but getting the disc back where it belongs, without any portion protruding. While taking medication to alleviate the pain is going to be necessary for part of the treatment period, it should not be the only thing you do for the problem. See an orthopedic specialist to fix your spine and get you off the drugs for good.

Learn More

Filling Your Free Time After Retirement

You’ve settled into a retirement center like Colonial Residence and find that many of the daily activities are done for you. Meal preparation and housecleaning are offered in many assisted living apartments leaving you with a lot of free time on your hands. Don’t let yourself spiral into inactivity. Be creative with your time with some of these suggestions to keep you busy.

Become a Community Leader

Your retirement complex appreciates residents who become active in representing the interests of the community. This gives you a chance to meet the people that share the facilities with you and hear their concerns. You will also gain knowledge of the facility’s plans so you can communicate them back to the residents.

Volunteer to Create a Newsletter

This could tie in with the above activity or become a standalone project for you. Interview residents and publish their interesting stories in the newsletter. Share upcoming event information and reviews of past events. This could be a simple project that you run by yourself, or solicit help from your neighbors to become your “reporters.”

Take a Stand on Important Issues

You may have had little time to be the advocate you wanted to be. Now your time is free to start letter writing campaigns to local politicians on topics important to you. Volunteer at a local political office and get your neighbors involved.

Teach a Class

Perhaps you enjoy dancing or writing poetry. You likely have an interest that you could share with others by teaching a class in the retirement community. If you’re unsure how receptive people would be, ask the administration if you can do a short survey of the residents to see where their interests lie. You may even get volunteers to help you organize a class.

Blog Your Experience

If you are tech-savvy senior, write a blog to share tips and experience that help others with their everyday problems. Each blog post can be a short solution to some of the common problems in other people’s lives such as:

  • removing stains from marble kitchen countertops
  • adding a dimmer switch to your living room
  • starting your own private delivery service

You’ll create a following of people who appreciate your help with their problems. They will also give you other ideas for blogging topics.

Become Technical Support for Your Community

There is an opportunity for you to help the other seniors in your community use technology to stay connected with friends and family. Design classes to teach the basics of using social media, text messaging and email and then create a space where people can come every week, try out their new skills under your support and guidance. You could help to open up the world to seniors who have been reluctant to use a computer, tablet or smartphone.

There are a number of ways that you can use your time in retirement to help your fellow residents and the broader community. Once you start thinking of all the ways to keep busy, you may find yourself needing a break from your “retirement.”

Learn More

3 Unusual Signs You Have An Allergy

When you think about someone experiencing an allergic reaction, you might picture someone sneezing because of pollen or needing a hospital visit due to a swollen face from eating shellfish. But there are many subtler signs of allergic reactions that can result in misdiagnosis unless you press for a referral to an allergy specialist. Here are a few unusual signs that could indicate you’re having an allergic reaction.

Itching After Exercise

If your skin begins to itch all over when you start exercising, it can be a symptom of dehydration due to lack of water intake or an electrolyte imbalance. But if it happens frequently and you know you’re properly hydrated, this feeling could actually be due to a food allergy. An exercise-induced food allergy basically happens when you eat a food that you have a minor allergy to before you exercise. The specific food allergy is often so mild that you don’t notice a reaction unless you exercise, which raises your body temperature, heart beat and circulation — all of which can help the allergen move faster through your body.

Exercise-induced food allergies can manifest as simple itching or move on to be hives or even an anaphylactic reaction. You can prevent this type of reaction by not eating two hours before you exercise and by visiting an allergy specialist to figure out which food is triggering the reaction.

Mouth Tingling

Does your mouth tingle or itch sometimes when you’re eating? Do you turn into a sneezing mess whenever pollen is in the air? These two factors could be related thanks to food proteins that bear a chemical similarity to pollen. Trigger foods include apples, bananas, melons, bell peppers and tomatoes. Cooking pollen-related foods often breaks down the protein enough so that it doesn’t cause a reaction. But if you still experience the mouth tingling, your allergy might be more severe and require medication or avoiding the trigger food altogether.

Joint Pain

Food allergies or sensitivities can present in a range of unusual ways. One of the symptoms can be joint pain throughout your body. This may be due to the allergy causing internal swelling, rather than the traditional external swelling associated with allergies. If you have chronic joint pain and have tested negative for arthritis or rheumatoid arthritis, visit an allergy specialist and get a blood panel done. If any food allergies or sensitivities pop up, avoid those foods for at least a month and see if your joint pain improves. If it does, slowly start reintroducing foods until you find the food or foods that triggered the pain. Now you know what to avoid completely.

Learn More

3 Tips To Help You Get Better, More Restful Sleep

Sleep is a critical part of your health. If you are not sleeping well, you will start to lack in other areas of your life. For instance, you might have trouble concentrating; you might gain weight, or become agitated and grouchy. This is why it is important that you do everything that you can to get adequate sleep.

Here are some things that you can do to help get better, more restful sleep:

1. Go To Bed At The Same Time Every Night

Some people have a hard time falling asleep at night, and then find it nearly impossible to get up in the morning. Unfortunately, this problem can be caused from a lack of schedule. Perhaps during the week you try to go to bed early, but then during the weekend you stay up till late hours playing. The problem with this is that you confuse your body about when you go to sleep and wake up.

If you are having a hard time falling asleep earlier, you might try taking a melatonin at the same time every night. This is a hormone that is over the counter that helps you body to regulate sleep rhythms. It will help you to feel tired at the same time every night so that you can fall asleep. That way you will feel more rested in the morning.

2. Ditch The Screens

One of the biggest mistakes that people make is watching a moving, play on their phones, or work on the computer right before bed. The light of the screen is like looking into the sun. This tells you body that it is time to wake up, rather than time to go to sleep.

Instead, try to listen to some relaxing music, do some yoga, meditate, or stretch before bed. This will help your body to know it is time for rest.

3. Be Active During The Day

If you have had a bad night the night before, you might be tempted to just lie around the house and nap. Even though it might feel good in the moment, it will only cause you to have another bad night. This is because you need to get your body moving and active. The more active you are during the day, the more your body will be ready to sleep at night. Thus, avoid napping, and lounging too much.

If after trying these things you are still having a hard time sleeping, talk to a medical professional. You might have a sleep disorder, or need medication to help you sleep. To learn more, contact a company like Billings Clinic with any questions you have.

Learn More

4 Tips For Eliminating Back Pain In Your Life

Did you know that lower back pain is the most rampant form of disability in the entire world? In fact, in the United States alone, 31 million people deal with back pain any given moment or day. A lot of this can be remedied when people take it upon themselves to get professional chiropractic care. However, there are many practical things that people should also do in their own lives in order to make sure that they are able to preserve and heal their backs while minimizing strain. If you have never thought about how to take care of your back, consider some of these useful tips. 

#1: Get An Office Chair That Is Comfortable And Upright, With Back Support 

Studies show that on a regular basis, people sit approximately 8 hours per day, while some further studies suggest as much as 15 hours per day. If people sit for this long, it only makes sense to make that experience as comfortable as humanly possible. The best way to do this is to get a chair that deliberately supports your spine, while providing lower back support. You should get a chair that is plush and comfortable, so that it is not a chore to use it. 

#2: Participate In Activities That Help Your Back

While a lot of people become workout junkies at some point, many people don’t take the time to learn about exercises that are good for their back. The best thing you can do for your back is stretch it and strengthen it. In that regard, there are few workouts better than yoga. By participating in yoga, you give your back the chance to become more flexible and strong, without putting strain on it during the workout. Swimming workouts are also excellent for people looking to strengthen their back through therapeutic means. 

#3: Make Your Core Stronger

When you work your biceps, you must also work your triceps, so that your muscles are strengthening evenly. This prevents injury and strain. The same rule applies when it comes to your back. Since your core consists of your abdomen, you will need to work hard to strengthen it, so that your back does not have to strain as hard. Make sure to add core exercises to your workout plan. 

#4: Eliminate Habits That Are Bad For Your Back

Everyday things like taking in bad stress, smoking and not getting enough sleep will take its toll and manifest in back pain. When your body and mind are not in balance, the physical pain will be that much greater. When possible, make sure that you take care of your diet and give your body the holistic care that it needs. This way, your back will be a beneficiary. 

For more information, contact Olson Chiropractic Centers or a similar organization.

Learn More