Everyone experiences anxiety. When we have a test to take, when we have a job interview, when we ice skate for the first time. Some level of anxiety prompts us to pay attention, and that can be helpful. Ethel Barrymore, a famous actress (who most readers have no awareness of because she performed umpteen years ago), said that she would not go on stage unless she was anxious because it prompted her to remember her lines.
AEC Living visited Mastick Senior Center on Wednesday, May 30, to help celebrate National Senior Health and Fitness Day. The event, which was free to seniors, offered mini senior fitness tests with a certified personal trainer and free blood-pressure and glucose checks from Alameda Hospital.
Seniors also attended a presentation about preventing falls in the home, a food demonstration by Dan Avakian from Dan’s Produce and a talk about recycling prescription drugs. Seniors met representatives from Bay Area senior cohousing, assisted living and home-care providers.
There is no way to describe depression that fits everyone. Just as each person is unique, so are our ways of experiencing our feelings.
Depression is a common and painful experience that effects how you feel, how you think and how you behave. It causes feelings of sadness, disinterest and an inability to engage in the world. It can lead to physical problems. It makes it difficult to function at times.
When clients first come to my office, I find out about their backgrounds. Where they came from sets a backdrop to who they’ve become. Who raised them lays a foundation for the values and lifestyles they grew up in and this impacts who they become as they age.
I often see people who do not know how to disclose their thoughts and feelings. It was not done in their home of origin and they never learned to do it. They have not learned the vocabulary of feelings. They do not know how to confront or challenge. It was not accepted or modeled in their past.
As my parents age and cope with chronic disease, I see first-hand how the healthcare system fails them and countless other seniors. Whether it’s polypharmacy (my father-in-law takes 17 medications daily) or abysmal care coordination of vulnerable patients (my father’s impaired memory leads to many follow-up orders not communicated between doctors), America’s healthcare system has lost its way. Adding insult to injury, Americans spend more on healthcare than any other country in the world, yet outcomes rank dead last among industrialized nations.