Pensioner is the topic of the week

Pensioner is the topic of the week

Pensioners are in the news more and more these days.  In last Saturdays Independent there were not one but three articles about the older person and their housing status, their money and their well-being.  

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During the week there was also an article from the independent about those who wished to work past retirement.  Jobs for the over 65’s

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We are getting noticed out there, 638,000 of us are over 65 years of age, 19% increase in last 5 years. We are living longer.  David McWilliams says in the Irish Independent that the ageing population is an uptapped resource.  Ireland is getting old but it doesn’t have to be a problem.  Older people are a huge resource rather than a cost to the nation.  Ageing population, an uptapped resource

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My Blue Space

My Blue Space

Soon I shall be heading to my Blue Space. It is time to open up the holiday home for a new season.  My Blue Space is in the sunny south-east.  It is a little peace of heaven.  

A Blue Space is known for its good qualities for health and wellbeing.  Health and the visibility of water is known as “Blue Space”.  The sounds of waves alters wave patterns in the brain (according to a number of articles on recent studies) and make you happier and relaxed which in turn helps rejuvenate the mind and body.

Idyllic sandy beach and blue ocean

There are lots of benefits of having a Blue Space.  The sea air is charged with healthy negative ions (the science bit) so you sleep soundly as the ions accelerate the ability to absorb oxygen.  This is so true, I always sleep better when I have had a walk on the beach, especially if it is in the evening time.  Another scientific fact is that when you float in the sea water, the blood from your lower limbs is pumped towards the abdominal region, which is nearer the heart.  This occurs as you are no longer standing upright and this fresh blood brings more oxygen to the brain making you more alert and active.  You get increased levels of serotonin which is a chemical in the body and this attributes to wellbeing and happiness. There is no better feeling than floating in the sea looking up at the sky. Ah Bliss.  I can’t wait for a dip in the ocean.

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If you are blessed with a sunny day in your Blue Space then endorphins are released as the heat of the sun allows the endocrine system secrete these natural chemicals to make you feel relaxed and less stressed. If you suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) then a Blue Space with the benefit of the sun is good for you.  I love that first feeling of the sun on your face when you just have to close your eyes and enjoy the feeling.  Here comes the sun (doo doo doo). Here comes the sun and I say, it’s all right…….by the Beatles. Can you hear it in your head now. 

Enjoy your Blue Space wherever you find it, I know I will.  

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JANUARY BLUES

JANUARY BLUES

January,  the month of new resolutions, new starts, new promises, new, new, new.

Christmas has come and gone for another year.  All the partying is over. A busy couple of weeks from the 8th December when the city centre is crowded with shoppers to the 6th January when little Christmas is celebrated.   Over the past 6 years, I have celebrated the 6th January with my girlfriends in  recognition of Nollaig na mBna.  This is when the menfolk look after the house and the family so that  the women can have a party among themselves.  The excuse was to use up all the left over pudding and cake and drink.  It was traditionally celebrated in the country more so that in the big smoke.  We thought it was a good idea to start our own Nollaig na mBna in my house and it has been great so far.  There isn’t a better way to start off the month of January than having a group of female friends over for a bite to eat, a drink or two and a good old chat.

The Christmas decorations are put away and the place looks bare.  It takes a while to get used to normality again in the house.  Great plans are made for the weeks and months ahead.  The weather is cold and damp but there is an expectancy in the air.  2017 here we come.  January is a great month to start something new, to give it a go, even if you tried the same thing last January and failed.  I love to see all the walkers out in force, determined to lose those pounds that stuck to them while they enjoyed the festive season.  It is like an army on the move.  The supermarkets are full of people buying healthy options and lots and lots of fruit and veg.  Spirits are high, recipes are swapped and we get through these first few weeks that can sometimes be tough on us.   Those who are lucky enough can escape to sunnier climates for a few weeks to get over the hurdle and into the spring.  The rest of us scan the travel websites, or look through the glossy brochures planning the holiday in the sun in 5 or 6 months time.

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January can be as good as you make it.  Enjoy the newness of it and make it count.

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HSE may extend ‘home from home’ for elderly

HSE may extend ‘home from home’ for elderly

I was browsing the internet and came across this article. Very interesting and is already in operation in some towns in Ireland.

By Claire O’Sullivan  of the Irish Examiner Reporter on Monday, November 14, 2016

The expansion of a little- known scheme where families are paid to take in elderly people so they can live their lives in a ‘home away from home’ is being considered by the HSE.

The scheme ‘can be of great benefit to the host family and the older person’, said Mervyn Taylor of Sage.

Under the existing ‘boarding out’ scheme, the HSE pays the homeowner an amount of not more than half the weekly rate of the State pension. In addition, the older person pays an additional sum agreed with the HSE and the house owner.

The scheme operates in Donegal, Mayo, Longford/Westmeath, Louth, and Meath and approximately 50 older people avail of it every year. Last year, up to 15 households took part in the scheme at a cost of €320,000.

The householder must “provide suitable and sufficient care, nutritious and varied food, and adequate attendance, having regard to the needs of the person”.

Under its 2016 service plan, the HSE has set up a working group to review the scheme and make recommendations “on the potential for developing and extending the scheme nationally as an additional option of care services for older people”.

The working group will look at international best practice in the area and look at identifying a best model of care for an expanded service.

Mervyn Taylor, manager of Sage, the support and advocacy service for older people, said the ‘home from home’ scheme offers “choice and flexibility and has very many positives for older people and for families”.

“We need a wider range of options for older people and this is one innovative scheme that already exists and should be nurtured,” said Mr Taylor.

“It’s an option that keeps elderly people who do not have a high level of care needs in the community. Once it has light, but sensitive oversight, it can be of great benefit to the family and the older person.”

The working group will also review the 1993 boarding out regulations, identify the scope to expand the scheme to other Community Health Organisation areas, identify the requirements and costs of an expanded scheme.

It is anticipated that the working group will submit its recommendations to the HSE Head of Operations & Service Improvement Services for Older People before end of the year.

A catch up with DigiNanna

A catch up with DigiNanna

DigiNannaDublin now has a registered domain.  I know that may not mean a lot to everyone, but I am very proud to have committed to this as it is the next step in the development and promotion of the website.  I am also in the process of designing business cards.  That is how serious I am about DigiNannaDublin. 

DigiNanna is in the middle of college assignments and reading week for mid-term.  We had daylight savings on Sunday with the clocks going back.  Over the years whenever it was  possible I would love to leave my clock as normal at this daylight saving time of year and then come mid afternoon change it back an hour.  I always thought it was more beneficial to me psychologically that way.  I know that when you have to be somewhere at a certain time it is not possible to do this, but you should try is one year and see what I mean.  I can’t say the same for Spring daylight saving time as it is always hard to adjust to losing an hour in your day.

There is a change in the air today (1st November) even though the past few days have been sunny.  It is has a very Autumn feel to it. (if you know what I mean).  Over the past few weeks, there have been tons of leaves swirling around the garden.  I love to walk among them feeling them crunch under my feet.  (you big kid, I can hear you say).

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I took a walk at the weekend up the hill to the ‘Hellfire Club’. The views over Dublin are breathtaking and worth the climb.  It was a while since I have walked an incline so, at first I was very slow, but gradually got into my stride weaving round the bends towards the top.  There were families with children of all ages walking up to the top also, one man even had his baby in a backpack carrier thingy for kids. Some energetic walkers took the very steep climb direct up the hill through the forest.  It was exhilarating getting to the top.  I definitely recommend it.

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Yesterday was Halloween and I had the usual treats for callers to the door.  Over the past few years, the number of callers has diminished and more often than not the treats ended up being given to family and friends or eaten by yours truly.  I only got a few treats ready for Halloween  and luckily there was enough for the few callers that came to DigiNanna’s door.  I loved Halloween as a kid and have great memories of trick or treat and party games.  I am reliving all this now through my grandchildren.

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I plan to go for more walks during the week and get some fresh air so that I can recharge my batteries for the next few weeks.  November and December shall be interesting and exciting in college as I complete my course in Digital Marketing. Looking forward to sharing all things of interest to older people and of course, those of you who are not old but follow DigiNannaDublin.

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FIVE STEPS TO A HEALTHY BRAIN

FIVE STEPS TO A HEALTHY BRAIN

Challenge Your Brainimages

Being smart is more than facts and knowledge, it’s being resourceful and insightful and challenging your brain in different ways. Don’t get stuck in a brain rut, learn something new, you might discover a talent you never thought you had.

EXERCISE
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Exercise helps to form connections between brain cells and it also helps us to de-stress. You don’t have to join a gym or become a marathon runner, 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise five days a week will keep your brain healthy and happy and you’ll also feel great.

Eat a Healthy Diethappy-healthy-body-clipart-1

A healthy diet is really important for a healthy and happy brain. Fruit, vegetables and fish are all great healthy options.

Take Care of Your Heart

Clipart Illustration of a Healthy Red Heart Running Past

What is good for your heart is also good for your brain. On your next visit to your GP get your blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels checked. Maintain a healthy weight, know your BMI and if you smoke, try an give them up.

Stay Socially Connectedgroup-of-friends-hugging-clipart-clipart-panda-free-clipart-images-bzbwel-clipart

Connecting and interacting with people helps to grow new connections in your brain.Meet friends and family for a cup of coffee or other activities you enjoy doing together.

Dementia Ireland