News You Can Use

Problems with memory and reasoning are difficult for individuals and for their families who are trying to cope with it. In addition to medical issues, dementia raises social, genetic, and legal questions. This presentation will cover definitions of memory problems, a discussion of causes, and the approach to diagnosis and treatment. “Dementia is not curable but it is treatable. There are ways to help the symptoms, and techniques to cope with associated behaviors”, according to presenter Michael Chun, a Doctor of Neurology at The Everett Clinic. Dr. Chun has been interested in the care of patients with dementia since he researched behavioral neurology at Columbia University. Sponsored by The Everett Clinic, Snohomish County Long-Term Care and Aging and the Snohomish County Council on Aging. View Dr. Chun's Power Point slides.

Media Reports
Don't believe everything you hear! Media reports about new medical research findings sometimes give conflicting information. You may see a news report that a health product or approach is good for you, and later see another news report that it’s not. Check out this Understanding Health News Article and take the simple test (allow extra time for the answers to appear).

Living Well With Chronic Conditions
Senior Services of Snohomish County is excited to announce that it will be expanding its offering of the Living Well with Chronic Conditions workshops in 2013. Thanks to the federal Empowering Older Adults and Adults with Disabilities grant awarded to Washington Department of Social and Health Services, Senior Services will expand this workshop throughout Snohomish County as well as offer the six-week workshop at no charge to participants.

These interactive and evidence-based workshops were developed by Stanford University’s Patient Education Department and are designed to help individuals who have an ongoing condition (such as diabetes, asthma, heart disease, chronic pain, arthritis, and hypertension) improve the quality of their lives. Participants learn to reduce stress and frustration, manage symptoms, problem-solve effectively, improve communication, and eat and exercise safely. Family members, friends, and caregivers can also participate. If you are interested in taking a Living Well with Chronic Conditions workshop or hosting one in your community, please contact Barb Thomas at 425-265-2283.

Caregiver Concerns
Helping someone dear to you can be rewarding, but it can also take its toll. Many caregivers don't recognize the signs of burnout, deepening depression, or the impact of care giving on their own health. In Washington, more than 600,000 unpaid family caregivers are helping someone 18 years of age or older to remain at home. Learn more about the services available through the Family Caregiver Support Program by contacting us. Please take a look at the Caregiving on the Homefront video for more information. You are not alone. We are here to help.

HIV: Know the Risks & Get the Facts
If you think you are too old to worry about HIV / AIDS, think again. HIV risk doesn't stop at 50. In fact, men and women over age 50 account for 17% of all new HIV and AIDS diagnoses in the 40 states that have long-term, confidential, name-based reporting. Every 10 minutes someone in the United States is infected with HIV. Make sure it's not you. Check out the HIV / AIDS and Older Adults video from the Administration on Aging and the HIV Fact Sheet for additional information.

Mind Your Mouth - Dry Mouth Awareness
Dry mouth is a common condition afflicting one in three adults age 65 and older, but many seniors see it as mostly just an annoyance. The truth is, untreated dry mouth can lead to serious tooth decay and gum disease, which is linked to diabetes, health disease, and other serious conditions.

Medications are the most common cause of dry mouth (xerostomia). It is listed as a potential side effect of more than 400 prescription and over-the-counter medications, including seven of the ten most frequently prescribed drugs.

The Washington Dental Service Foundation (WDSF) has established a strong partnership with Bartell Drugs and they will provide information on oral health and dry mouth to customers at all 58 stores and through their pharmacy, in-store newsletters, and website. As you know, pharmacists are trusted allies in older adults’ health care, so it’s an ideal partnership.

For more information about oral health and the Mind Your Mouth campaign, please visit the Seniors' Oral Health website.

Millions of Older Adults Missing Out on Resources
A report released by the National Council on Aging (NCOA) and the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a) finds that millions of Americans are missing out on over $20 billion in free and low-cost support that is available to help pay for health care, prescriptions, food, and utilities. Visit the National State Insurance Assistance Program site and view their newsletter for more information.