Healthy Aging Starts with a Healthy Mouth, and Health Equity Starts with Us

Last week, the Diverse Elders Coalition traveled to Alexandria, VA for the Oral Health America Medicare Symposium. Advocates, policymakers, and providers convened for this Symposium to discuss how to get a dental benefit included in Medicare. A recent study found that 52% of older adults are unaware that Medicare doesn’t cover routine dental care – maybe you didn’t know that, either!

Given how important oral health is to overall health – if you can’t chew or swallow food, or if you are living with chronic pain from infection or gum disease, your overall health is certainly impacted! – it is shocking that once an elder turns 65, they are their own for.... Read More

             

ACA Repeal Would Send Native American Uninsured Rate Soaring

by Jim McLean

The number of Native Americans without health insurance would increase sharply if Republicans in Congress succeed in repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act, according to a new report.

The report, from the left-leaning Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, says that proposed cuts to Medicaid and to the subsidies that reduce out-of-pockets costs for low-income individuals purchasing private insurance in the ACA marketplace would jeopardize the coverage of more than 300,000 Native Americans and Alaska Natives.

The uninsured rate among Native Americans would climb by 27.4 percent in Kansas and 36.2 percent in Missouri, according to the report. Kansas is home to approximately 60,000 people who self-identify as either.... Read More

             

Extreme Heat

by Nicole Van Nelson, National Indian Council on Aging (NICOA). This post originally appeared on the NICOA blog.

It is officially summer time, and with summer comes hot weather. Unfortunately, sometimes the weather gets too hot and becomes extreme heat, which can cause heat-related illnesses. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) note that “around 618 people in the United States are killed by extreme heat every year” even though heat-related deaths and illness are preventable.

Heat-related illnesses happen when the body is not able to properly cool itself, and in extreme heat evaporation is slowed so your body must work extra hard to maintain a normal.... Read More

             

LGBT Older Adults Run a Higher Risk for These Three Chronic Conditions

by Kathleen Cameron. This post originally appeared on the blog of the National Council of Aging (NCOA).

Chronic conditions can be difficult to manage at the best of times, but for many LGBT older adults, barriers to health care, lack of health insurance, and fear of discrimination by doctors threatens the healthy aging of a generation.

Studies suggest that LGBT older adults have higher rates of chronic conditions and other health problems, such as obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, arthritis, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and more. Because many LGBT.... Read More

             

Ojibwe Woman Proves it’s Never Too Late to Get Fit

By Barb Norbeck.  Ms. Norbeck (Minnesota Chippewa Tribe) is a member of the National Indian Council on Aging (NICOA) and lives in Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula. This post originally appeared on the NICOA blog.

I don’t let cold weather stand between me and exercise. I enjoy pulling on my cleated hiking boots, grabbing my walking sticks and taking a brisk walk on an icy sand beach on Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula. It does something for my spirit. I can enjoy it now at age 73 because I have the muscle mass and tone to extend myself. I can actually work up a sweat! I credit my positive attitude and agility to a variety of reasons. I.... Read More

             

Hispanics and Latinos are facing the fastest increase in the rates of type 2 diabetes

This post originally appeared on the NHCOA blog.

Hispanics and Latinos make up the fastest-growing demographic of the US population. In 2015, the Hispanic population reached 56.6 million, making Hispanics the nation’s largest ethnic/racial minority, constituting 17.6% of the US population. It is projected that by 2060, the Hispanic population will reach 119 million, or 28.6% of the US population.

In addition to rapid population growth, Hispanics and Latinos are also facing the fastest increase in the rates of type 2 diabetes. Hispanics are at a greater risk than non-Hispanics for having prediabetes, a treatable condition categorized by.... Read More

             

Now Available: SAGE Health Storylines Self-Care App

This post originally appeared on the SAGE blog.

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The SAGE Health Storylines self-care app makes it easy for older adults and caregivers to track their health. When you open the app, you will see a variety of tools including medication tracker, daily moods and symptom tracker which allow you to build your health story. The My Storylines feature allows you to learn more about your health, and to share more – safely and securely – with your doctor about what happened between visits.

This app was designed in partnership with.... Read More

             

New Report: LGBT Older Adults Face Unique Challenges to Successful Aging

The Movement Advancement Project (MAP) and SAGE have just released a report, Understanding Issues Facing LGBT Older Adults, which aims to increase awareness of the diverse needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) elders across the country. The report offers a comprehensive look into the experiences of LGBT elders, highlighting the challenges they face across a wide range of topics from health care to financial security and community support, and their resilience in the face of these challenges.

As America’s population rapidly ages (the number of people over 65 will double by 2050) so too do LGBT adults. Currently, there are more than 2.7 million LGBT adults aged.... Read More

             

Sexuality and Sexual Health Among Older Adults

by Nicolás Peña, National Hispanic Council on Aging (NHCOA). This post originally appeared on the NHCOA blog.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau (2016), it is expected that by the year 2033 the population of older adults will outnumber people younger than 18 in the United States. With the life expectancy of older adults increasing, we must continue educating and informing this population on maintaining a healthy quality of life. Many older adults continue to be independent, expressing their basic needs, and engaging in and enjoying sexual relationships.

Aging is a natural process of life, and it is normal for the body to go through physiological and emotional changes, such as cognitive loss, and even higher vulnerability.... Read More

             

Disrupting Silos: Combating Ageism and Xenophobia

by Meera Venugopal, Communications and Development Manager for India Home, Inc. India Home is a non-profit organization dedicated to addressing the needs of the Indian and larger South Asian senior citizen immigrant community. Started in 2007 by a group of healthcare professionals, India Home provides social, psychological, recreational, and spiritual services in a culturally sensitive environment. For more information, visit www.indiahome.org.

This post originally appeared on the India Home blog.

Last month, India Home participated in the 2017 South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT) Summit in Washington, DC. India Home Deputy Director Lakshman Kalasapudi and Case Manager Afroditi Shah Panna joined over 300 activists, organizations, students, and community members from.... Read More

             
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