Are You Ready for the Next Wave of Technology Change?

Digital Readiness Digital readiness refers to what people do with information and communications technology and what they know about the opportunities and risks of using it. It focuses on what technology people have: what it is, how to get it, and how to use it. The issue has become more important as digital networks extend far beyond home computers and phones to include more objects of everyday life such as appliances, cars, thermostats and clothing. This growing “Internet of Things” …

A Home ‘Fit’ Remodeling Project: The Entryway

This is entry No. 3 in an AARP Livable Communities blog diary about a home remodeling project to make a Florida house better suited for aging in place.  The entryway is one of the most important areas that need to be addressed in a home for life design. No steps, a minimal threshold and a 36-inch clearance maximize access into and out of the home for people of all ages and abilities. Automatic lighting increases visibility and safety, while user-friendly locks …

A Home ‘Fit’ Remodeling Project: Finding the Experts

The following is entry No. 2 in an AARP Livable Communities blog diary about a home remodeling project to make a Florida house better suited for aging in place.  A “home for life” design involves finding the right experts who can work collaboratively to ensure that all of the personal and home needs fit in the remodel. The website of the National Association of Home Builders includes a resources page with information about Certified Aging-in-Place Specialists (CAPS), many of whom are home …

A Home ‘Fit’ Remodeling Project: Getting Started

As an occupational therapist and aging-in-place consultant, I am frequently asked to assess a home for its ability to meet the functional needs of the people who are or will be living in it. Sometimes I’m called in by a caregiver who needs advice about how to make bathing or transporting a resident of the home easier. Other times I’m consulting for retirees who want to redesign their home for accessibility due to common aging ailments such as arthritis, diminished …

Can Streets Make Us Healthy? Open Streets Can

America’s public health crisis has been well documented. More than two-thirds of adults are overweight, and more than 1 in 10 children become obese as early as ages 2 to 5. Boomers have the highest obesity rates of any age group, topping 35 percent in 17 states. Obesity is related to dozens of serious health issues, including diabetes, heart disease and vascular dementia. Traditional public health intervention efforts in the form of nutrition and exercise education and promotion have had …

Making a House a ‘Home for Life’

Meet John and Jane Doe. An active couple in their mid- to late 50s with two married children and four grandchildren, this pair loves their home, community and neighbors. Although they’re still in good health, John is having knee problems and will likely need surgery, which has prompted the duo to starting thinking about the future. Any of this sound familiar? The imaginary Doe family represents the millions of boomers now age 50 and older. It was around their needs …