Health Education Topics

May is stroke awareness month.

An easy way to remember the signs of a stroke is to remember F.A.S.T.

FACE DROOPING: Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile.

ARM WEAKNESS: Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?

SPEECH DIFFICUTLY: Is speech slurred, are they unable to speak, or are they hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a sentence, like "the sky is blue." Is the sentence repeated correctly?

TIME TO CALL 9-1-1: If the person shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get them to the hospital immediately.

DO NOT DRIVE YOURSELF to the emergency room if you suspect your are having a stroke.

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Age-Related Declines Evident Before 60

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MONDAY, Aug. 1, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Age-related physical decline might begin earlier than thought, a new study indicates.

Researchers from Duke University Health System in Durham, N.C., found that signs of physical decline can be seen in people in their 50s.

The results suggest that regimens to maintain basic strength and endurance should begin before age 50 in order to keep people mobile and independent later in life, according to the study researchers.

"The good news is, with proper attention and effort, the ability to function independently can often be preserved with regular exercise," said lead author Katherine Hall, an assistant professor of medicine.

"Our research reinforces a life span approach to maintaining physical ability -- don't wait until you are 80 years old and cannot get out of a chair," Hall said in a Duke news release.

The researchers assessed 775 adults ranging in age from their 30s to over 100. The participants had to perform simple physical tasks such as walking, standing on one leg and rising from a chair repeatedly.

  • August 4, 2016
SOURCE: Duke University, news release, July 21, 2016

7 Steps to Healthy Aging

A look at what the happiest and healthiest seniors have in common--and how to improve your own odds.

What’s the secret to healthy aging? Is there any way to stay vigorous, alert and happy into our 70s, 80s and beyond? A recent study into the habits of healthy older Americans answers with a resounding yes. In fact, the remarkable study outlines seven crucial elements that go into successful aging. And most of them are under your control.

Our bones support us and keep us on the move, and yet we often take them for granted. Because bones naturally weaken as we age, we must fight against osteoporosis to prevent breaks. No matter what your age, here are three steps you can take to help safeguard the health of your bones, according to the National Institutes of Health.

Good: Eat a diet rich in calcium as well as vitamin D, which helps your bones absorb calcium. Consider supplements if you have trouble getting your daily dose—1,000 milligrams for adults between 19 and 49 and 1,200 milligrams for those 50 and older.

Better: In addition to getting your calcium, add weight-bearing workouts to your regimen. They are the best kind of exercise for your bones, and strength training is a great option. You also can walk, jog, climb or hike your way to better bone health.

If you feel pain and stiffness in your joints, you may have arthritis. This condition is caused by inflammation and swelling where two bones meet, such as in your hands, wrists, knees and hips. It’s the most common reason for American disability, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Osteoarthritis is the variety that is most common as you age. It affects nearly 21 million adults and is caused by wear and tear on your joints, combined with a history of previous injuries and made worse by being overweight. Most people older than age 60 will develop some degree of osteoarthritis, and women are more susceptible than men.