This Issue

Healthy aging: Living longer and living better

Improvements in public health and medical treatment have significantly increased life expectancy in the past 60 years. People more frequently live into their 80s and 90s and even top the century mark.

Q&A on healthy aging with Dr. Jatin Dave

Dr. Jatin Dave, a geriatrician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and medical director of geriatrics at Tufts Health Plan, answers questions about aging.

Depression in the elderly: When fun things are no longer fun

Although common, depression in the elderly is not a normal part of aging. Many factors, including poor health and poor nutrition, lack of exercise and isolation can worsen the condition. Yearly screening for depression is now offered at no cost ...

Immunizations for the elderly

Many older adults assume that vaccinations are for young kids only. But with the development of new vaccines, such as Zoster for shingles, and the waning protection of the immune system, those 60 and older are advised to get protection ...

Prevention Guidelines

Since many chronic diseases occur more frequently in older adults, certain screenings and preventive services are recommended well into one’s senior years. It is best to develop with your doctor a screening program that fits your medical condition and family ...

STDs and the Elderly

The incidence of sexually transmitted diseases is on the rise in older adults due in part to the high divorce rate. Older adults are less inclined to use condoms, which they tend to associate with protection against pregnancy rather than ...

Falls are the leading cause of injury deaths in the elderly

When young people fall, for the most part they get up and walk away. A fall in an elderly person, on the other hand, can result in a permanent disability or even death. Falls are the leading cause of fatal ...

Check Your Risk for Falling

Several factors can increase a person’s risk for falling. Some factors, such as unsteadiness when walking, are more obvious. But many people are unaware that more subtle factors, such as depression or fear of falling, can increase the risk as ...

Practice balancing exercises to keep you on your feet

It is possible to improve or maintain one’s balance by regularly practicing balancing exercises, such as standing on one foot or heel-to-toe walking. Good balance lessens the probability of a fall, which can result in a permanent disability.

T’ai chi helps improve balance in the elderly

T’ai chi, an ancient Chinese martial art, consists of a series of controlled and deliberate movements called forms. T’ai chi is recommended for people of all ages, particularly older adults, to increase strength, flexibility and stamina. Research has found that ...

a healthy daily eating plan

A daily eating plan should include a variety of whole foods, including fruits, vegetables and whole grains and low-fat proteins, such as legumes. Nuts and olive oil are good choices of health fats. The amount of food depends on one’s ...

Healthy eating in older people not always easy

As people age it may become more difficult to consume certain minerals and vitamins, such as calcium and vitamins D and B12. In addition, medical conditions may reduce activity, which can result in obesity, a risk factor for several diseases, ...

Ginger Honey Glazed Salmon

Salmon, especially sockeye salmon, as well as other fatty fish, such as mackerel and sardines, is a good source of vitamin D. The vitamin, in combination with calcium, helps increase bone density, or bone strength. Bone density decreases with age.

Recommended Guidelines for Vaccines

There are five vaccines that the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices currently recommends for older people. Three of the shots — for shingles, pneumonia and a booster for tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis (whooping cough) — are administered once, while protection ...

Typical aging vs. signs of dementia

“Senior moments” begin to increase with age, but that’s to be expected as years pass. Generally, those moments pass and the memory returns. Dementia, on the other hand, affects social abilities and memory severely enough to interfere with daily functioning.

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