Column: Mental health care is necessary, underutilized health care service
We all struggle from time to time – no matter our age, financial status, ethnic background or religion. Why isn’t our usual approach to treating mental wellness the same as it is for physical wellness?
Artist shares gift with nursing home residents
By Barbara Sherf
When Anthe Capitan-Valais was a little girl, she used to wait for the deliveries of her father’s laundered shirts so she could draw pictures on the cardboard forms included with each fresh batch.
Her father wore a button-down shirt and tie every day for his job as a high school principal. Capitan-Valais looked forward to recovering and using the blank slates of cardboard. “I was given paint-by-numbers kits, but I really didn’t like staying in the lines,” says the Flourtown artist, now 65. “I liked to draw free-form and still do.”
The art of conversation: Ways to connect more meaningfully with others
By Beth Goldner
Talking can help you connect more meaningfully with others and support your health and well-being. While digital communications may be easier and more comfortable than conversing for some people, it is worth the effort to participate in regular verbal conversations. Read on for tips to help you make the process easier and more enjoyable.
Unhappy holidays: When you’re teary instead of merry
By Constance Garcia-Barrio
For many of us – whether we celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanzaa –the December holidays don’t come with a Hallmark halo, but rather a gauntlet of potential problems. The passing years may have left us divorced or widowed, like me, or with family members living at a distance. We may also wrestle with thorny relationships and grief. However, we can take steps to navigate the season’s rough spots, go beyond a mask of merriment and find true peace.
Emotional intelligence can increase with age
By Michael Hanisco
Despite popular notions of seniors being stubborn or set in their ways, evidence suggests that we may actually gain in skills known as “emotional intelligence” as we age. October was designated as Emotional Intelligence Awareness Month by the nonprofit Emotional Intelligence Institute to improve emotional literacy, communication and mindfulness.
Tired of the same old argument? Book offers advice
By Barbara Sherf
Inspired by his marriage to his wife, Elise, Max Rivers has made a successful career out of helping couples with marriage problems. Max, 67 and Elise, 52, have been together for 15 years. At the beginning of their relationship, they both studied mediation in Massachusetts. Because of the impact that learning mediation had on their own relationship, they saw the potential for using the practice in all aspects of life, especially marriage.
Transitioning gender to become her true self
By Constance Garcia-Barrio
After years of “gender unhappiness,” Lee Ann Etscovitz took a huge step in a long, painful journey. At the age of 65, she underwent male-to-female sexual reassignment surgery in May 2001. “I had to live as much as possible as the female I felt myself to be,” says Etscovitz, a Hatboro resident.
Tips to prevent heat stress
When you’re feeling the heat, this information could be a lifesaver.
Sharon Congleton, Philadelphia Corporation for Aging (PCA) health promotion nurse supervisor, says that senior citizens, young children and people with chronic health conditions are at a greater risk heat-related illness, such as heat exhaustion or heat stress.
“It is important for older adults to understand the dangers and potential complications that can occur from being exposed to severe heat. Older adults also need to know what they can do to prevent heat stress from occurring,” she said.
Find ways to be active, involved during Older Americans Month
For 55 years, Older Americans Month (OAM) has been observed to recognize older Americans and their contributions to our communities. Led by the Administration for Community Living’s (ACL’s) Administration on Aging (AoA), this celebration each May offers an opportunity to hear from, support, and celebrate our nation’s elders. This year’s OAM theme, “Engage at Every Age,” emphasizes the importance of being active and involved. You are never too old (or too young) to participate in activities that can enrich your physical, mental, and emotional well-being.