National Council for Aging Care’s Comprehensive Guide on Exercising for Seniors

Comprehensive Guide on Exercising for Seniors

When people think about their later years, they usually imagine a life freed from work or career commitments. They hope, too, that this new freedom will allow them to give their full attention to family, friends, and the activities they feel most passionate about. Making this dream a reality, however, requires health and independence, which in turn require a renewed commitment to staying healthy in general and to maintaining that health through exercise.

The good news, though, is that exercise confers all the same benefits to seniors that it does to those earlier in life, including increased longevity, improved mental clarity, a boost in energy, and greater strength to meet the physical demands of daily living. This is true even if you don’t start exercising until your later years. And while older people tend to become more sedentary as retirement and the challenges of old age restrict their activities, that doesn’t mean that you can’t make a reasonable course of exercise a part of your life or the life of a loved one.

With that in mind, here is everything you need to know about keeping an active lifestyle well into your senior years.

Congressional Testimony on Aging – Tamar Heller

Tamar Heller, RRTCDD director, gave testimony before the United States Senate Special Committee on Aging on October 25, 2017. Her testimony addressed a number of issues facing older adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities including changes in health and health promotion, support for family caregivers, and retirement options. Download Full Testimony.

For a video of the entire hearing titled “Working and Aging with Disabilities: From School to Retirement” see the following link: https://www.aging.senate.gov/hearings/working-and-aging-with-disabilities-from-school-to-retirement

Medication and supplement use in older people with and without intellectual disability: An observational, cross-sectional study

1 Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia, 2 School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland, 3 IDS-TILDA School of Nursing and Midwifery, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland, 4 Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland, 5 School of Social Work, Temple University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States of America, 6 The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA), Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland, 7 Trinity College Institute of Neuroscience (TCIN), Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland

Source:  2017 Sep 6;12(9):e0184390. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0184390. eCollection 2017.

Abstract

Introduction Understanding the medication and supplement use of aging people is critical to ensuring that health service providers in primary care can optimise use of these agents. An increasing number of people with different levels of intellectual disability (ID) are living in the community and becoming for the first time substantial users of primary health care services. This, however, brings new challenges that need to be addressed at the primary health care level. We quantified the use of medicines and food supplements and described the associated patterns of morbidity in the two comparable cohorts of aging population with and without intellectual disability.

Method This research aligned participants of 50 years and over who lived in the community from two nationally representative cohorts of older people; those with ID from the Intellectual Disability Supplement (n = 238) and those without ID (n = 8,081) from the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing.

Results Data showed that both medication and supplement use in the two groups was prevalent but that those with ID received more of both medications and supplements (e.g. polypharmacy was 39.0% in ID vs. 18.1% in non-ID cohort). Moreover, based on an analysis of the therapeutic groups and medications used that treatment was more intense in the ID cohort (95.8 vs. 7.0 International Non-proprietary Names per 100 participants). Supplement use was almost twice as prevalent in the ID group but substantially less diverse with only 10 types of supplements reported. Morbidity was higher in the ID group and showed a higher prevalence of neurological and mental health disorders.

Medication and supplement use among older people with and without IDD

How to Make Healthcare Accessible for All

Source: University of Washington, Healthy Aging RRTC

Healthcare access is important for all individuals, especially for people with disabilities. However, people with disabilities don’t always receive the healthcare they need. Several barriers can make it harder for them to access critical healthcare services or build optimal working relationships with their providers. Fortunately, by being aware of these barriers, we can overcome them with changes in design, training, and policy.

Download How to Make Healthcare Accessible for All

Perspectives about support challenges facing health workers assisting older adults with and without intellectual disability in rural versus urban settings in Australia

Rafat Hussain , Matthew P. Janicki , Marie Knox, Stuart Wark & Trevor Parmenter (2017): Perspectives about support challenges facing health workers assisting older adults with and without intellectual disability in rural versus urban settings in Australia, Journal of Intellectual & Developmental Disability, DOI: 10.3109/13668250.2017.1326589

Source: Journal of Intellectual & Developmental Disability

ABSTRACT

Aims: Life expectancy for both sexes in Australia exceeds 80 years, with individuals with intellectual disability also increasingly living into older age. This research aimed to comparatively examine perceptions of staff supporting either older adults or age peers with lifelong intellectual disability.

Methods: This project asked 420 medical, health, and support workers about training adequacy, health services access, and trigger points for premature institutionalisation. This paper is based on a subsample of 196 respondents who provided quantitative and qualitative responses.

Results: There was considerable variation in confidence in supporting ageing individuals, while only 23.7% of doctors reported their training was adequate to support adults ageing with intellectual disability. A lack of services and poor carer health were identified as triggers for premature institutionalisation.

Conclusions: The study revealed key differences in staff perceptions of support provision and training adequacy when comparing ageing individuals with intellectual disability to the general ageing population.

Download Perspectives about support challenges-JIDD

Plan Your Lifespan

Source: http://www.planyourlifespan.org

People are living longer. Are you prepared to turn 80, 90, or 100?

This website will help you plan for health events such as hospitalizations, falls, and memory loss that may happen as people get older. This planning differs from end of life care and wills.

Do you know…

  • What your rehabilitation options are after a hospitalization?
  • How to connect with local services and resources such as in-home care, Villages, and skilled nursing facilities?
  • What steps you can take to help prevent falls?

Plan Your Lifespan will help you learn valuable information and provide you with an easy-to-use tool that you can fill in with your plans, make updates as needed, and easily share it with family and friends.

Social Support Networks of Aging Persons with Intellectual Disabilities

Play Recording

Presented by: Lieke van Heumen, PhD

This webinar will discuss emerging research and practice in supporting social networks of adults aging with intellectual disabilities. After a brief introduction on aging in this population, the webinar will discuss the role of social relations in later life and address the state of knowledge regarding the social support networks of older adults with intellectual disabilities. The webinar will provide a discussion of the role of support services in promoting informal networks and conclude with an exploration of the use of social network mapping and life story work in person-centered planning.

Lieke van Heumen is a postdoctoral research fellow at the Department of Disability and Human Development, University of Illinois at Chicago. Lieke’s primary research interest is the intersection of aging and disability with a focus on supports that contribute to aging well. She believes retrieving the lived experiences of older adults with disabilities by means of inclusive and accessible research methods is key to assuring the meaningful engagement of adults with disabilities in the research process.

International Summit Consensus Statement: Intellectual Disability Inclusion in National Dementia Plans

Karen Watchman, PhD, Matthew P. Janicki, PhD, Michael Splaine, MA, Frode K. Larsen, MPH, Tiziano Gomiero, PhD, and Ronald Lucchino, PhD

Source: ID in National Plans

Abstract

The World Health Organization (WHO) has called for the development and adoption of national plans or strategies to guide public policy and set goals for services, supports, and research related to dementia. It called for distinct populations to be included within national plans, including adults with intellectual disability (ID). Inclusion of this group is important as having Down’s syndrome is a significant risk factor for early-onset dementia. Adults with other ID may have specific needs for dementia-related care that, if unmet, can lead to diminished quality of old age. An International Summit on Intellectual Disability and Dementia, held in Scotland, reviewed the inclusion of ID in national plans and recommended that inclusion goes beyond just description and relevance of ID. Reviews of national plans and reports on dementia show minimal consideration of ID and the challenges that carers face. The Summit recommended that persons with ID, as well as family carers, should be included in consultation processes, and greater advocacy is required from national organizations on behalf of families, with need for an infrastructure in health and social care that supports quality care for dementia.

How to Bounce Back – Aging with a Disability Factsheet Series

Source: How to Bounce Back | Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Aging With Physical Disabilities

How to Bounce Back – Aging with a Disability Factsheet Series

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Living with a disability can be stressful at times. Resilience is a term that describes how we cope with stress. By building up our resilience, we can stay more engaged in life.

What Is Resilience?

Resilience describes our ability to bounce back and keep going after a stressful experience. Different people define resilience in different ways. When we asked people with disabilities to describe resilience in their own words, some descriptions included:

  • Bouncing back, or being “buoyant.”
  • “Rolling with” or “dancing with” a disability.
  • Taking things one day at a time, while also planning for the future.
  • Finding a “new normal” as life changes.
  • Making the best of life with a disability.
  • Trusting that stressful times will pass, like the weather.

No Wrong Door No Wrong Door Systems (Aging and Disability Resource Centers)

No Wrong Door

Source: No Wrong Door

This paper provides concrete examples of how seven No Wrong Door Systems—sometimes called Aging and Disability Resource Centers—are promoting person- and family-centered practice. No Wrong Door Systems involve an array of organizations including Area Agencies on Aging, Centers for Independent Living, and state agencies such as Medicaid agencies and state units on aging. Older adults, people with disabilities, and their families can access services through these agencies in a variety of ways including in person, by telephone, and online.

Individualization is at the heart of person- and family-centered practice. It is an essential component of No Wrong Door Systems, allowing people to have information about their options and facilitate decision making based on individual and family preferences, values, and financial resources. The paper includes a toolkit of resources and contacts for states to learn more and even replicate these practices. A checklist—specifically created for this project—provides a roadmap for states to ensure that No Wrong Door Systems operate in a person- and family-centered way.

This paper is the first in a series of promising practices and emerging innovations reports. This series is a new feature of the upcoming, 3rd Long-Term Services and Supports (LTSS) Scorecard. The LTSS Scorecard—written by the AARP Public Policy Institute and funded by The SCAN Foundation and The Commonwealth Fund—measures state-level performance of LTSS systems that assist older people, adults with disabilities, and their family caregivers.

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