Sex Helps Boost Brainpower

Love might be good for the heart, but it turns out that sex is good for the brain, especially as we age. And, in fact, a healthy sex life seems to benefit men’s and women’s brain’s differently, a new study finds. Researchers at Coventry University in England studied 6,800 men and women 50 and older and found that those who were sexually active scored higher on cognitive tests than those who were not. (Sexual activity included intercourse, masturbation, petting or …

Uniform Definitions and Data Elements for Collecting Information About Elder Abuse

Elder abuse is an important public health problem that has negative consequences on the health and well-being of older adults and contributes to avoidable health spending. Studies have found that elder abuse leads to increased use of emergency room and in-patient hospital care, and estimates are that annual costs associated with such abuse are over $5.3 billion. The U.S. Administration on Aging defines elder abuse as any knowing, intentional or negligent act by a caregiver or any other person that …

Taking a Closer Look at Aging American Indians and Alaska Natives

I grew up next to the Colville Indian Reservation in Washington state and I remember how native elders were revered throughout the community.  At the annual powwow the elders shared their history through song and dance, and all generations sat together, joining in the chanting and drumming. Those memories rushed back this week, as AARP’s Public Policy Institute released its most recent report, “Lifelong Disparities among Older American Indians and Alaska Natives.” AARP, along with researchers from Western Carolina University …

At AARP, We’re Passionate About Caregiving

Early this year, I lost my dear mother, Hattie Kane, a modest but blessed and beloved wife and mother. She died of a lengthy illness at the age of 93 after I’d cared for her for eight years, five of them in my home. Largely because of this experience, helping others with their caregiving journey has become a new passion of mine. At AARP, we say that if you’re not currently a caregiver, you’re likely to be one in the …

My Top Tips for Caregivers, as Seen on ‘Today’ Show

Recently, I appeared on the Today show with Kathie Lee and Hoda to share some of my best tips for caregivers. The segments go by in a flash, so I thought I’d share a bit more about each of the tips I discussed on the show (see the video below). If you suddenly find yourself in the position of caregiver for a parent, spouse/partner, grandparent, sibling, adult child, friend or neighbor, here are some things to do immediately: If a loved one is unexpectedly hospitalized, …

Have Your Say! WHO Global Strategy on Aging and Health

The world’s population is rapidly aging. Such increased longevity brings opportunity and is something to celebrate, but it also brings challenges. Fortunately, there’s an increasing recognition that we need to create environments and systems that enable people to stay as healthy as possible as they age. Building on the launch of its anticipated Global Health and Aging report on Oct. 1, the World Health Organization (WHO) is seeking public comments in order to develop its comprehensive Global Strategy and Action …