Resolve to sleep more as a New Year’s resolution, because scientific study shows that, “You are 10 times more likely to stick to a change made at the New Year,” and other studies say you’re even more successful if you get the support of others. So now is the time to make those commitments, as we approach the year’s end. This video and article will help. Read More …
Are you Exhausted at Work?
It’s time for a wake-up call when nearly three-quarters (74%) of U.S. workers say they work while tired, and nearly one-third (31%) say they do so very often.
That’s the findings of a new survey by staffing firm Accountemps, and the productivity impact parallels the health & safety impact the CDC cited when describing sleep deficiency as “A Public Health Problem.”
The costs of working tired – both for professionals and the businesses they work for – are high: Respondents cite lack of focus or being easily distracted (52%), procrastinating more (47%), being grumpy (38%) and making more mistakes (29%) among the consequences. (See survey findings infographic below.) Read More …
Is it just “One Step Forward and Two Steps Back?” or is something bigger happening?
Last week I read an excellent article in Huffington Post by Charles Francis, and it inspired today’s post about public interests versus special interests. In this article I’ll reflect on the healthcare progress consumers are making despite politicians working against them. But first, more on the obstacles we face.
In How Mindfulness Meditation Can Transform Health Care, Charles examines the need to change consumer behavior toward healthier lifestyles, so I thought about the role of incentives and awareness education. I’ve written about that before, but today I’ll take a broader look at the many factors influencing the health and productivity of our nation’s workforce and why I remain guardedly optimistic that we’ll overcome political corruption. Included are links to many related articles and this list of over 130 past articles on healthcare policy. Read More …
|EDITOR: These stats are from Alzheimers.net, an online community dedicated to education, advocacy and supporting those whose lives have been impacted by Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. Alzheimers.net was created by people touched by Alzheimer’s to give caregivers, those with Alzheimer’s a place to share our passion for change and a cure for the disease. I added a short section on the impact of sleep duration & quality and a related infographic.|
Alzheimer’s Statistics Worldwide
- Worldwide, nearly 44 million people have Alzheimer’s or a related dementia. (Alzheimer’s Disease International)
- Only 1-in-4 people with Alzheimer’s disease have been diagnosed. (Alzheimer’s Disease International)
- Alzheimer’s and dementia is most common in Western Europe (North America is close behind)
- Alzheimer’s is least prevalent in Sub-Saharan Africa. (Alzheimer’s Disease International)
- Alzheimer’s and other dementias are the top cause for disabilities in later life. (Alzheimer’s Disease International)
5 All-Natural & Effective Ways to Manage Arthritis Pain
If getting out of bed in the morning is difficult due to a chronically sore back or knees, or your hands or ankles ache throughout the day, you may be among the 52.5 million adults in the United States that the CDC estimates have some form of arthritis.
While many people who suffer from osteoarthritis are prescribed pain medication by their physicians, some may wish to find alternative ways of dealing with their discomfort.
Fortunately, there are a variety of natural and simple ways that can help people manage their arthritis pain. Read More …
Understanding Back Pain
By Dale Powell
It’s a real pain in the… well back I suppose. Do you ask yourself, “Why me?” Well it might be comforting news for you that lower back pain is a very common issue as 80% of people will suffer its wrath at some time in their life.
While you can have back pain at any age, it’s said that people between the ages of 35 and 65 are to occur and suffer lower back pain more than any other age groups. No matter what age you are, lower back pain can strike, often based on your lifestyle and daily habits. Read More …
In Moore’s Law and The Future of Health Care, I offer a vision of healthcare based on exponential advancements in tech innovation as described by Gordon Moore. Moore is an Intel cofounder and is credited with observing that computer circuits have shrunk in size and doubling in compute capacity every two years. Moore’s Law is what drives down costs & size, but that logarithmic trend is not easy to grasp. So let’s look at two analogies explaining a 60,000 improvement in cost and 90,000 improvement in speed since Intel started tracking computer chips in the 1960’s.
COST — If the price of cars and gas improved exponentially at the same rate as computer chips, we’d be able to buy a new car for about 8-cents today and would only spend 2-cents per year on gas. At that rate, cars would be disposable, and we might just buy a new one for each trip, as a fashion accessory matched to our outfit.
SPEED — If the speed of air travel advanced at the same exponential rate as computing, today we’d be able to fly from the U.S. to Japan in less than a second, but the plane would be just over 1-tenth of an inch long.
Industry analysts keep predicting the end of Moore’s Law, arguing for many reasons that computer chips can only get so small or so cheap, and today I responded to another article about The End of Moore’s Law. Here’s my response, which shows optimism from my 30 years at IBM (I retired in 1999) and my interest in technology as a futurist. Read More …
Drug addiction can easily extend to seniors as they age, develop multiple chronic illnesses, have many pains, and are seen by different physicians who may not know what else the patient is taking.
Contrary to what many people may believe, substance abuse is not just a problem for young, reckless people who are living a party lifestyle. Senior citizens experiencing multiple pains from various ailments may end up abusing prescription painkillers or other substances. Medication abuse knows no boundary of age, and whether a person is 20 or 80, dependency and addiction is a possibility if he or she must use painkillers or similar drugs. It is important for such people to seek substance abuse treatment if they have become addicted or dependent. Read More …
Today’s Wired Patient – This infographic from Makovsky Health survey shows that, from online search to wearables, technology is changing patient-focused healthcare every step of the way. [Scroll down for a larger version, or click the image for the full size.]
This year’s survey reveals consumer readiness to leverage health apps and wearable devices to improve their personal health, and to disclose online personal health data as a path to improved treatment options, trust and quality of health information were cited as important factors in selecting online health sources.
“Smartphones and wearables are driving a major behavioral shift in consumer health and wellness,” said Gil Bashe, executive vice president, Makovsky Health.
Consumers eager to leverage technology for better health
Top interests when downloading and using mobile health apps reflect proactive desires for informative, functional and interactive programs:
- Tracking diet/nutrition (47%),
- Medication reminders (46%),
- Tracking symptoms (45%), and
- Tracking physical activity (44%).
article by Perry Hua with edits by Wayne Caswell
The goal when choosing housing is to pick an option that best matches your financial, physical, medical, and social needs. The earlier you assess your current and future needs, and the more you know about the options available, the easier it is to make a decision. Here’s a list of options showing their advantages and costs, starting with the most expensive first. Read More …
Income levels for aging Americans are increasing,
but not as quickly as “The Cost of Aging in America.”
The infographic below was produced by the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University. It explores the serious financial burdens faced by aging Americans, their loved ones, and industry — as well as steps our health care system might take to counteract this trend. I gladly feature it today to complement other articles here about health reform, public policy, and the future of healthcare.
- The number of seniors 85 and older will triple by 2050, an important statistic because these are people who need the most expensive care.
- The cost of healthcare in America is already over $3 trillion/year, and that doesn’t even include the roughly $450 billion provided by unpaid family members.
- Paid caregivers earn just $18-20K per year, and while demand for their services will likely double by 2022, their wages likely won’t increase much.
Winter weather can mean dangerous conditions for older people, both inside and outside the home, so this infographic by Homecare Together offers helpful tips on how to keep sufficiently warm and keep the heat inside. Afterwards is a text transcript for people who use screen readers.
In addition to helping seniors stay warm, keep an eye out for symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder. SAD is a type of depression that occurs during winter when there’s less natural sunlight, and keeping curtains drawn to keep in the warmth can amplify the effect. It’s often treated with light therapy using products offered by Intelligent Sleep. Read More …
EDITOR: When seniors can no longer drive a car, they lose their independence and become dependent on others for the simplest things — shopping for groceries or Christmas gifts, getting a haircut, going the bank or doctor or the movies, and more. That can be devastating and even force them into institution care, ultimately shortening their lifespan. So it’s why I’m a fan of the autonomous, self-driving car, and Google, the company that’s so far leading the way. And it’s why I’m happy to republish this article by Zachary Shahan at FIX.com about cars for seniors who can’t drive themselves.
Hands-Free Driving: Google’s New Driverless Car
One of the biggest tech stories of the year is definitely the unveiling of Google’s driverless car. The general story is this: Google is manufacturing some completely self-driving cars – no steering wheels, accelerator pedals, or brake pedals. But the details are pretty fascinating, and even more interesting are the broad societal implications. Read More …
Often life begins after 70, so we share this infographic to celebrate seven amazing people who achieved phenomenal things in their later years, including:
- Katsusuke Yanagisawa climbed Mt. Everest at age 71.
- John Glen went back into space on the space shuttle Discovery at age 77.
- Thomas Lackey performed a “loop the loop” on top of an aircraft at age 85.
- Leonid Hurwicz won the Nobel Price for Economics at age 90.
- Nola Ochs earned a Master’s Degree at age 98. She got her Bachelor’s at 95.
- Fauja Singh was 101 when he ran his last competitive marathon race at 8 hrs, 11 min.
- Edythe Kirchmaier opened her Facebook account on her 105th birthday. She’s now 106.
Tossing and Turning: Sleeplessness in America
This text, courtesy of Top Nursing Programs, is provided as a convenience for automated screen readers. Sighted readers will prefer the Infographic below.
There aren’t many people who are happy with their sleep: They get too little, they feel restless, they don’t wake up refreshed, they can’t stay asleep. In fact, most Americans admit to having erratic sleep patterns, especially through the work week. So what does lack of sleep actually do to the body? And if we can’t add more hours to our sleep, how can we make the sleep we do get better?
- 8 to 8.5 — Hours of sleep per night adults generally require (1)
- 1 in 3 — Adults who have insomnia at some point in their lives (1)
- 43% of Americans 13-64 say they rarely or never get good sleep on weeknights.
- 60% admit to suffering some sleep problem every night (snoring, waking constantly, feeling groggy in the morning). (2)
- 15% of adults 19-64 say they sleep less than six hours on weeknights. (2)
Nearly Half of Family Caregivers Spend
Over $5,000 Per Year on Caregiving Costs
30% Spend More than $10,000 Per Year, 21% Don’t Know How Much They Spend
San Mateo, CA; September 15 2014 — Almost half (46%) of family caregivers spend more than $5,000 per year on caregiving expenses, according to a new Caring.com report. A family caregiver is defined as someone who takes care of a family member or friend, but is unpaid for their services. Their caregiving expenses include out-of-pocket costs for medications, medical bills, in-home care, nursing homes and more. Read More …
infographic courtesy of Home Access Products.
With innovations in health care, medicine, and nutrition, it’s no surprise that Americans are getting older. By 2030, nearly 20% of Americans will be over 65– and nearly 90% of them want to stay in their own homes as they age.
As aging in place continues to rise, seniors are increasingly looking towards technology to stay safe and connected. From personal alert systems to cell phones and tablets, seniors are embracing technology and all of its benefits. Whether aging seniors are tech-savvy, or prefer simple ways of communicating at home, these products and services can assist seniors with safety, entertainment, health/wellness, communication, and assistance. Read More …
Wearable Technology – Helping Your Doctor Help You
You might have heard the aggressive term “glasshole,” which unaffectionately refers to people who wear their Google Glass wearable computing device everywhere and all day long. The Google Glass is actually just one type of wearable computing device.
Smartwatches, smart wristbands, fitness trackers, helmet-worn impact checkers, back pain posture checkers, necklaces, clip-ons, smart clothing and other wearable technology already exist and may be an important part in the future of healthcare.
These gadgets can record various vitals and electronically send them to your doctor on your next visit, or via apps on your smartphone. When data collection becomes that easy, anonymized and aggregated data from cities, states or even countries can be analyzed to detect trends in the general population. Read More …
The Line is an important documentary that covers the stories of people across the country living at or below the poverty line. They have goals. They have children. They work hard. They are people like you and me. Across America, millions are struggling every day to make it above The Line.
As shown in the Stats below and the accompanying infographic, poverty is a drag on the economy that also affects the cost of healthcare, as I’ve written before in this blog. Read More …