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A Day in the Life of a Funeral Director

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Planning a funeral for a loved one is a great responsibility.

In this short documentary you will see a behind the scenes look of a funeral home and what really is involved in funeral planning for a family, being a Funeral Director or Conductor on the day of the funeral service, and finally internment of the deceased.

Melissa Laird, a Funeral Planner, also sometimes known as a Funeral Director, shows how arranging and planning a funeral is very time sensitive and an onerous responsibility, which sometimes requires her to become a mediator, advisor, confidant and consultant to the families she serves.

Common Medical Disorders Among Elder Folks

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Some people believe senior citizens have fewer things to worry about. This is the stage in life when many people usually retire from work and start taking it easy. Unfortunately, it is also the period when you can be afflicted with a lot of health conditions. That is why the elderly have to be more careful and find out common ailments that afflict individuals 60 years and above.

Heart and Pulmonary Issues

844356Majority of older persons are prone to heart failure. This is a condition when the body does not receive sufficient amount of blood. It eventually results to heart valve disease, myocardial infarction or heart attack, high blood pressure (hypertension), and obesity. Symptoms vary but the most ordinary indications are difficulty in breathing, chest pains and inflammation of ankles. Heart attacks can cause paralysis, coma or even instant death.

Meanwhile, hypertension is characterized by rising blood pressure. Keep in mind that the normal reading is 120/80 which should be your guide. Grown-ups must control blood pressure to live longer. It may be necessary to purchase an inexpensive and simple blood pressure monitoring equipment.

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease or COPD is an illness that affects the respiratory system. It brings about immediate exhaustion, dyspnea (recurring shortness of breath) or continuing cough with discharge of mucus. Doctors describe COPD as a persistent inflammatory lung disorder that blocks air coming from the lungs. Old people afflicted with this disease are susceptible to heart sickness and lung cancer. Emphysema as well as bronchitis often leads to COPD. The good news is this disease can be cured by prescription medicines, proper nourishment, and use of bronchodilators. This equipment can loosen muscles surrounding bronchial tubes and makes breathing easy.

Progressive Mental Deterioration

Frowning-elderly-woman1Alzheimer’s is sometimes called a disorder of old age. It is the most prevalent type of dementia that cannot be cured. The initial phase is known as pre-dementia. It is followed by the early and moderate stages which culminate with the advanced phase. The disease gets worse over the years. Patients lose the capacity to talk and react to their immediate environment. It also interferes with day to day routine. Some persons who contract Alzheimer’s are given a maximum of eight years to live after symptoms become apparent. However, some seniors live up to 20 years more depending on their ages and conditions.

Other serious disorders that majority of old men and women suffer from include hearing impairment and depression. This can be remedied by hearing aids which help alleviate auditory problems. Consult a doctor right away if you start to experience difficulty in hearing. Your family physician can recommend you to an ear specialist or otolaryngologist for more comprehensive tests and treatment procedures.

Finally, older adults are not really vulnerable to depression but it is something to be careful of. Transformation in emotional health normally takes place when you reach the age of 65 or even younger. These changes can produce too much anxiety, loss of confidence and sensitive moods.

How to Keep Busy – A Guide for Senior Citizens

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It may not be enough to just exercise and eat healthy food especially if you have reached a certain age. The life of an older person is very different compared to someone who is much younger. A lot of changes will occur over the years. Socialization with peers is vital to prevent loneliness, ill health and emotional or mental deterioration.

Remain Active in Life

A senior couple playing a board game together

The key is to remain active for the rest of your life. This entails participation in simple but worthwhile activities. These can help old persons to stay vigilant and energetic. Some leisurely pursuits that you can engage in are board games; arts and crafts; cooking lessons; reading and writing; taking care of pets; and, volunteer work. Many elderly folks are not keen about retirement homes although these facilities espouse healthy lifestyles, independence, as well as camaraderie. These centers also make sure to take good care of their wards.

A dynamic and balanced standard of living can help you keep away from loneliness. This along with the feeling of separation from their next of kin is a mounting health concern among older adults. It affects both physical and mental conditions. Things can become worse if this feeling leads to melancholy. Consequences are severe since the person may not eat, smoke or drink. The ultimate outcome can be chronic diseases or even premature demise. Social relationships will be effective at this point. Psychological research disclosed that socialization reduces stress levels which keep older folks hale and hearty.

Technology and Exercise can Help

elderly-dementia-social-media-photoCommunications should not only be personal. Thanks to information technology because people can now interact across the globe through the worldwide web. One can use social media FaceBook, Twitter, or Instagram); correspond through email or Skype; and, send text messages 24/7. It is simply a matter of older men and women learning the processes from their children or grand children. Retirement communities and social organizations take the lead in educating seniors about the Internet and its benefits. It keeps them active and prevents boredom at the same time.

Exercise is for everybody even for those who are 80 years and older. It is very helpful especially if combined with a nutritional diet. The only difference is that workouts for old people should be done in complete moderation. Physical exercises are good not only for the body but the mind as well. It also helps them interact with colleagues or the younger generation. It will be advisable to consult a legitimate and experienced trainer for the amount of exercise that you can do in one day.

Systematic workouts will give a person resources required in maintaining the proper balance to avert accidental falls. It is a good method of building strength, mobility and self-confidence. Exercising also teaches you the importance of interacting with friends and becoming more active in life. Physical fitness done in restraint and according to an individual’s capacity can help prolong life and ensure happiness.


Healthy Lifestyles are Imperative for the Elderly

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An enhanced lifestyle is essential both for the younger and older generations. You should be health-conscious even at age 65 or beyond. In fact, it is important to be in good physical shape all the time. This is one good way of minimizing the risks of developing recurring ailments. Think positively. This attitude will surely spell a great difference. Older individuals experience plenty of changes but all these can be manageable.

Improve your Health

Find effective means of enhancing one’s health. Age should not be a stumbling block. Engage in exercise for as long as physical activities are not too strenuous. Regulated workouts can help older adults to keep away from sickness. Besides, exercise is effective in weight management, reducing blood pressure and fortifying the muscles. Augmentation in muscle mass also aids in the process of metabolism. Walking and stretching for several minutes daily can take the place of gym workouts. It gives an older person more flexibility and helps prevent stiffness in the muscles.

Many elderly people have the tendency to lose their appetite. This is not a medical issue but a natural condition. It only turns into a problem once it leads to malnutrition or serious health disorders. Seniors must be wary they are most susceptible to diseases as well as infections. “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” This should be their guidance to stay away from these health maladies.

Focus on a diet that will definitely enhance the quality of life. For instance, refrain from consuming sweetened drinks if you are suffering from diabetes. Never forego primary meals and snacks. Those with heart problems must limit consumption of saturated fats and sodium. Be prepared to make sudden adjustments in your daily food regime. Lactose-free or non-dairy milk is the ideal alternative for ordinary milk. You can also try yogurt or food reinforced by calcium.

Medicines and Diet

antipsychotic-medicationIntake of medicines prescribed by the physician is important to your wellbeing. These prevent the progress of sicknesses. The downside of medications is its effects on the appetite of old individuals. Confer with your doctor or a certified nutritionist once this problem emerges. Read medical information published on the web regarding food that you can eat while taking medicines.

Old folks also suffer from weak immune systems. Remember that the immune system (innate and adaptive) is made up of several organs, tissues and cells. This network helps a person resist contagion and respiratory diseases. These start to change as you grow older. The capacity of the body to fight off germs depends on immune system control. Seniors should work hard to protect the immune system by adopting healthy living techniques.

You should also drinking liquor and smoking cigarettes. Maintain the proper weight based on your height. Avoid infection by washing your hands properly and regularly. Regulate your blood pressure by exercising frequently provided your body can tolerate the physical activity. This should not be a difficult routine especially if your life is on the line.

Useful Diet Suggestions for People above 50

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Health articles say that older adults must consume a balanced nutritional regime. This is a very effective piece of advice. You need to be careful with the food you eat. Otherwise, it may be difficult to avoid medical disorders such as hypertension, diabetes and plumpness. Healthy eating is the buzzword. It is simply a matter of how to achieve this target.

Appropriate Dietary Plan


The rule is not to skip these three major meals – breakfast, lunch and dinner. If you skip meals, it causes lack of energy, drop of sugar levels, irritability, and low metabolism. Eat the right food. The most healthy breakfast includes bread or cereals high in fiber; fresh fruits; vegetable omelet; or, oatmeal with honey and some nuts. At noontime, try some lean meat; chicken salad with black beans; or, stewed veggies with whole wheat pasta. Dinner does not have to be heavy. You can have grilled fish; sweet potatoes; or, grilled pork plus vegetable salad. Salads are alright provided these are full of fiber and not foods with too much fats, salt or sugar content.

The problem with old folks is their slower metabolism or conversion of food and water into energy. In short, seniors gain more weight because they burn fewer calories which can be compounded by becoming less physically vigorous. The senses also deteriorate as you age. The taste buds become bland as a result. Use more herbs and healthy cooking oils to avoid too much salt or seasoning. Choose natural sweeteners like honey in place of sugar. Prescription medicines can also produce side effects. Consult the doctor on how to tackle these by-products.

The digestive system of the elderly also slows down. This translates to production of less saliva and useful acids in the abdomen. The body finds it hard to process vitamins and minerals like Vitamin B or folic acid. This is vital in maintaining mental sharpness, memory and blood circulation.

Lifestyle Considerations and Undernourishment

healthy-fruits-health-apples-mediumThe elderly must cope with significant changes in everyday life. The thought of being alone can affect their appetite considerably. It can become worse once depression sets in. The good news is this can be addressed by socializing with neighbors or acquaintances. Weekend get-togethers can break the boredom and make life more pleasant for old people.

Undernourishment can be a major problem for old men and women. This is the result of excessive dieting; deficiency in nutrients and vitamins, and digestive issues that happen as one becomes older. The condition can bring about depression, exhaustion, shaky immune system, lung disorders, and cardiovascular issues. To combat malnutrition, it is essential to eat food with nourishing substances. Consume wholesome refreshments between regular meals and tasty foods. Drink a lot of water daily. Seek advice from a medical specialist if things get worse.

Eat in the company of other persons if possible. It may take time to adjust but the effects will be positive in the long-term. Ask your relatives, children and grandchildren or even close friends to visit on a regular basis. Make new friends among neighbors, adult facilities and senior centers.

Keep your Folks Active, Fit and Happy

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How do you keep elderly people robust and active? The problem is that diseases and respiratory inspections can make your parents or grandparents sedentary which is not a good sign. You need to teach them how to be full of life despite their advanced years. It is also essential to maintain good quality of life. An older person requires adequate physical, psychological and social motivation. These can be achieved through a flexible lifestyle.

Learn and Practice the Fundamentals

happinessOld folks who stay at home, nursing facilities or assisted living residences must receive the right amount of stimulus. These will keep their mental faculties active, bodies moving and spirits high. Convince and assist your elders to become more familiar with the internet. The web is a vast resource for reading materials, videos and instructional CDs. Provide them with their favorite melodies because these help kindle their brain cells. Senior citizens can also indulge in community activities provided these will not affect their health negatively.

Exercise and other physical activities will surely help an older person remain healthy, full of life and self-sufficient. It is not advisable to spend eight hours or more just lying down or sitting around. This will only make you sick and probably shorten your life. Idleness contributes to increased rate of falls, cardiovascular ailments, high blood pressure, and obesity. Working out is also a means of enjoying life. Continue with your daily routine such as walks to the park, shopping around, meeting friends, and having fun with your grandchildren.

There is substantial clinical evidence that active elders are not easily susceptible to heart diseases, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, dementia, depression, and some forms of cancer. Doctors will advise you to keep moving to remain free from pain and psychological conditions. There are many ways to do this aside from engaging in exercise.

Physical Activities

These are leisurely pursuits that help people get their bodies moving a lot. There are many of them such as strolling, biking, gardening, controlled sports, cooking, and cutting grass using a lawn mower. You should spend a minimum of three hours of normal activity each week. This can be distributed in stretches of 15 minutes daily. Muscle-building is also a recommended effort. It can include some weight training and carrying heavy but manageable loads.

For those who are 65 years and above, try daily exercise as long as you are not suffering from serious ailments. This can consist of regulated aerobics of 150 minutes like walking and cycling. Strength exercises are also recommended for the back, legs, hips, stomach, arms, and shoulders. An hour or more of spirited aerobics like singles game of tennis on a weekly basis or running is also good for you.

The cardinal rule is a minute of vigorous exercising offers the same amount of health benefits just like two full minutes of restrained activity. You can engage in light activity rather than sit down the whole day. Sitting for long periods can be bad for the health.