Health Care Tips

Senior Health and Medications

One of the foremost senior health issues of the day is prescription medications. Whether the issue is money or drug interaction, every senior citizen needs to use their head when thinking about medication.

For instance, if your physician prescribes new medications for you, always ask if he has any samples to give you. It’s not wise to pay for new medications without knowing you can ‘take’ them and not have severe side effects. Pharmaceutical companies supply free samples to doctors just for these purposes. Even if getting renewal prescriptions for meds, ask for samples. Make sure you physician knows all of the medication you are taking though, because you want to avoid any drug interaction reactions.

Walking for Senior Health

Here’s another senior health care tip. When walking for senior exercise, it is important that you keep a normal stride. Over-extending our stride length jolts our joints and actually slows us down. You may also put stress on your joints and ligaments by trying to go very quickly or by lengthening your stride too much. Take it easy! Studies show that walking is just as effective as running for aerobic exercise. It may take you a bit longer, but then you just have more opportunities to stop and smell the roses!

Skin Cancer and Senior Health Care

If you find an unusual mole, or notice a change of an existing mole anywhere on your body (face, arms, legs, torso, back) you should notify your physician to have him or her check on this. These changes can indicate skin cancer, something that can be easily taken care of if removed in its early stages.  Redness, scales, or non-healing spot on your face is another potential sign. It may prove to be ‘nothing’, but then again a cancer could be detected. Early diagnosis results in better prognosis.

Exercise Your Face

Here’s a senior health tip you won’t see elsewhere. You know that if any muscle of your body is not active, it begins to lose quality; same thing happens to our facial and neck muscles. Facial and neck exercises are a must to maintain the muscle tone. Without this, the muscle fibers deteriorate and shrink, and the skin covering the muscle can age very rapidly. Funny (or maybe not), but as we age we chew gum less; this act of ‘chewing’ is a form of exercise for our face and neck muscles.

To exercise your face, exaggerate a really wide grin, then begin an imaginative chewing of a wad of bubble-gum…feel the neck and lower jaw muscles working? Hah! You’ve begun your muscle toning!

Another: Exaggerate that wide grin…I mean…REALLY exaggerate it WIDE, stay in this position, simulate a ‘pucker’ and pull lips upward as if trying to ‘kiss’ your nose; now hold for a count of 10 then relax; repeat this step at least 10 times each day and you’ll find yourself toning up that ‘chicken-waddle’ – the double-chin – in your neck while strengthening your neck and jaw muscles.

Note: you may find a bit of soreness the day after beginning this last exercise, but it will go away…what muscles DON’T get sore when they are used for a first time in a long time

Household Tips:

Alternative to moth balls

If you don’t mind the ‘spicy’ aroma, you can use whole cloves in the pockets of wool coats, or in a bag with sweaters when storing for the off-season. Prevents moth damage with a better aroma!

Bounce® Sheets-repel mosquitoes

Bounce® sheets will repel mosquitoes; just tie a sheet through a belt loop when outdoors during mosquito season. You can also rub on arms and legs to accomplish this. Don’t forget to pack some sheets into sealable sandwich bags when going camping or on a picnic.

Removing tea stains

This is especially good for removing tea stains from cups or counter tops: sprinkle baking soda on a clean, barely moistened rag then wipe the area, followed by a rinsing of cold water.

Freshen-up the coffee pot

Coffee pots need freshening regularly; at least once a month. To do this, rinse with a strong solution of baking soda-water, and then rinse with clear water. For auto-drip coffee makers, Rinse twice with clear water.

Maintaining bright colors

To maintain the bright colors of new clothes, use cold water and add 1/2 cup of vinegar with detergent when washing for the first time; seals in the colors.

Automotive Tips

Prepare your car for warm weather

Something you should begin checking on now is that your radiator still has a good level of antifreeze/coolant. With warm/hot weather coming on, this will aid in cooling your engine when using the air conditioner. In hot weather, you should check weekly for sufficient water and coolant. NEVER remove the radiator cap when engine is hot!! If the water is a translucent green, you probably have sufficient coolant, but best to have a professional check first off. You could also purchase a test gauge at auto supply store.

Keep gas tank full!

Did you know that your gas tank accumulates a ‘sludge’ build-up in the bottom? To avoid this sludge from clogging your fuel pump, or causing problems with the carburetor, keep a full tank of gas. When your gas gauge shows half empty (or half full), fill up the tank. This also helps when you have a travel emergency arise; you won’t have to worry about running out of gas at night or in the middle of a snow storm! I’ve put as much as 150,000 miles on a car with no fuel pump or carburetor problems. When you drive with your tank 1/4 full or below, the sludge is sucked into your pump and/or carburetor, eventually causing expensive repairs.

Changing windshield wipers

It is so important to have good, reliable wiper blades on your car. Remember that last downpour? And your wiper blades were partially shredded and couldn’t ‘see a thing’? Now this is dangerous. Get to the nearest auto parts store and replace those blades; most prefer the double-blade type. Most stores will put these on for you if you can’t do it yourself. For your safety sake, keep your windshield wipers in good shape. By the way, if your state has safety inspections, this is a must if you want your car to pass inspection!

Your car’s tire safety

Its good advice to own a tire gauge (not expensive), and check monthly that they are inflated to recommended pressure. This will aid in better gas mileage. Uneven wear is sure indication the tires are out of balance or misaligned. On new tires, rotation should be made at the first 5,000 miles, then at each 7,500 miles afterwards. Always keep your spare in the trunk fully aired.

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