Mental Health

Spring is Here!

Monday, April 14th, 2008

Spring has sprung so get ready for good weather and in some cases hot sun. HELPFUL HINT: Be prepared to wear a hat while gardening, and do not go out without your sunscreen. The incidence of skin cancer, especially melanoma, is on the rise. By keeping your skin protected you preserve your youth and lessen your chances of getting wrinkles due to dehydration of skin and decreased ability to hold moisture.

AWARENESS
April is Alcohol Awareness month. A recent study by Brandeis University has been done and reported that one out of ten elderly adults on Medicare drink more than is recommended. An article published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society has evaluated 12,413 Medicare beneficiaries and shown that of these people over 65 years or older, nine percent have engaged in unhealthy drinking-consuming more that 30 drinks per month, or drinking four or more drinks on any day. Most people may not be aware of the fact that they drink excessively, and this can exacerbate existing medical problems, reduce a person's ability to function, increase fall risk, interact negatively with medication and reduce sexual function as well as desire. Everything in moderation, even sex after 65!

AWARENESS
May is Stroke Awareness month. Be aware of unexplained symptoms such as slurring of speech, unending headaches, inability to balance properly or unexplained dizziness. Have these checked out immediately by your physician. Strokes can be prevented by having your arteries screened by non-invasive techniques such as sound Doppler techniques and even using a simple stethoscope to listen to your carotid arteries by your physician. Taking a baby aspirin daily can help your heart and your head in the case of stroke, but first check with your MD.

An elderly friend of mine sat crying on his front steps. I happened by and asked what the problem was. He said sadly, "I have a new 35 year old girlfriend who brings me untold pleasures, makes me feel young again and I long for her presence when she is not with me. I said "it sounds great, what are you so sad about?" He stated, "I forgot where she lives!"

ANTIOXIDANTS
Antioxidants are intermediaries in metabolism that help stave off cancer and other debilitating diseases. Some new advances in juices can help. New products that contain Mangosteen or Acai berries are great sources of antioxidants . Both have proven effective to fight disease. Just a shot twice daily does the job!

Enjoy life…exercise; play; read; do puzzles; love yourself; hug someone daily; and smile! Dr Eric Shapira sends you all the best. Enjoy each day!!! Remember, life is like a roll of toilet tissue: the closer it gets to the end, the faster it goes!