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How to conduct a home safety audit of a senior’s home

Many older Americans would prefer to stay in their own homes for as long as they possibly can. 

Making that decision means weighing a lot of factors, including home safety. One way to find out whether your senior loved one’s home is safe, comfortable, and functional is to conduct a Home Safety Audit.

Since it is National Safe at Home Week, now is a great time to think about conducting one on your senior loved one’s home.

What is a Home Safety Audit?

Everyone needs a home that’s safe and secure, but seniors may need a few modifications made to their homes in order to feel comfortable and be safe.

It’s hard to look at a familiar place with an objective eye for safety, which is why the AARP has published a home safety audit checklist. It’s very thorough, so it’s daunting to look at!

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Mistakes to avoid when you are searching for a senior living community

Shopping around for a senior living community can make you feel like you’re lost in a foreign country. 

The language is different, you’re not sure whom to ask for help, and you just want everything to be easy and normal again.

It doesn’t have to be that way, however. Many have gone before you, successfully finding a proper setting and a new home for their senior loved ones.

The key is avoiding the common mistakes that people make in their search for senior living.

5 Mistakes to Avoid When You’re Searching for a Senior Living Community

There are many pitfalls to avoid. These are five of the most common mistakes made by families like yours, who are searching for the right community for a senior loved one.

1. Beginning the search without first knowing the terminology.

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How the food pyramid changes as we age

Generations of Americans have based their food choices on the familiar Food Pyramid. 

Created by the USDA to educate Americans about the proper balance of food groups to eat, it’s a useful, visual tool that reminds us to eat more healthy foods and less unhealthy foods.

The food pyramid is still around, but these days you might notice that a few changes have been made. For starters, it’s not a pyramid anymore!

The new food pyramid is a plate.

Called MyPlate, there are two versions: one for people over 50 and one for younger people. The idea is that dietary recommendations change as we age. Here’s what that looks like, decade by decade.

How Your Food Pyramid Changes As You Get Older

The following nutrition recommendations are based on the MyPlate suggestions, which in turn are based on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

In Your 30s

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Vision symptoms seniors shouldn't ignore

Nobody should ignore vision problems. That’s a given. But seniors should be on extra high alert for changes in their vision. 

It’s because these changes could very well be signs of an age-related eye disease. And, because some of these diseases can appear suddenly, it’s important to catch those signs early on.

Having your eyes checked once a year is one of the best ways to protect your vision.

Since this is National Eye Exam Month, it’s a great time to remind seniors that certain vision symptoms should never be ignored. You can learn about those symptoms below, but scheduling an annual eye exam is crucial for maintaining good eye health.

Vision Problems That Should Never be Swept Under the Rug

Take note of the following symptoms, and if you experience any of them, call your doctor.

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How to talk with a parent about money

You and your aging parents probably have a lifetime of difficult conversations behind you, but the toughest could be yet to come. 

Asking your aging parents how they’re doing financially and how they plan to live out their years is right up there among the top worst ways to spend an afternoon together.

Ignoring the topic, however, is a bad idea. Don’t wait for a crisis to start discussing financials.

Tough Discussions are Often Loaded with Deeper Meaning

Talking about money is hard at this stage in life because your parents’ may feel it signifies a loss of independence. It also narrows in on a closely related subject: how to handle finances after your parents are gone.

Nevertheless, you’ll need to know about these matters. Being in the dark about an older loved one’s finances can set you up for misunderstandings down the road.

National Senior Citizen's Day is right around the corner. Use it as a trigger to start the difficult conversations you should be having.

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