"Senior Years Newletter"

Your newsletter of information, inspiration and education for seniors, boomers and caregivers on Pre- and Post-Retirement matters.(Published by Hoffmann-Rondeau Communications - Seniors Services)

- June 2012 Issue -

Hello and welcome to this issue of the "Senior Years Newsletter".

As usual I trust you will find this edition to be as informal, inspirational and educational as promised it would be. Your comments are always welcomed and interesting to me, so do write -- because I care to hear from you.

Blessings and good health to you,

Diane M. Hoffmann, CPCA
(Certified Professional Consultant on aging)

Issue Article of the Month

by Diane Hoffmann

Supportive Decision-making

According to recent news items on issues of supportive decision-making, new legislation now gives better opportunity to determine our own care if and when a time comes for the need of assistance in making decisions and dealing with personal, financial, and legal matters.

These new changes to the health care legislation allow the people of BritishColumbia to actively participate in their future care. They can predetermine who will act for them, who will make decisions on their behalf,and what those decisions will be.

You may have a BC Notary or a lawyer assist you in the preparation of these essentialdocuments or even “do it yourself.” These personal planning laws in our province are the result of many people working together to help make it happen.

There is a lot to cover in these areas, so I thought you would want to read all about it yourself in the pdf issue of the magazine for notaries public at the following link -- these issues begin on page 8...

here's the link

1. Feature article:

Playing it Safe

As summer beckons us to spend more time outdoors gardening, exercising or relaxing in the yard, it also beckons other creatures - insects, bees and yellow jackets. Most of the time, they leave us alone if we leave them alone. But, occasionally, they bite and sting, ruining an otherwise perfect day. Most people get over bites and stings in time to weed the sweet peas or go for a stroll by afternoon, reacting only mildly. A mild allergic reaction - including swelling, redness, pain and itching - can cause an undue share of misery.

But a small percentage of the population reacts violently to insect bites and stings. Recognizing the difference between an ordinary immune response and a severe allergic reaction can mean the difference between life and death.

Severe Reactions - Within minutes from the time an insect bite or bee sting occurs, toxic effects follow. A severe allergic reaction, or anaphylaxis, occurs when any of these symptoms are present, for which immediate emergency care is required:

swelling of the lips, tongue, or throat, trouble breathing, hives, dizziness, nausea, cramping, diarrhea or vomiting, loss of consciousness.

Large skin infections and reactions to a bite or sting also call for immediate care. According to HealthLinkBC, shock may occur if the vital organs are not supplied with an adequate amount of blood.

Pest Prevention:

Avoiding severe reactions is key to outdoor safety, and managing your surroundings helps prevent this from occurring. In addition to staying alert outdoors and using insect repellant according to directions, other steps also help. Keeping drinks covered, especially sweet drinks like juice and pop, is one way to help keep insects away. The yellow jacket, a common name for a predatory wasp, seems particularly attracted to sugary liquid, but its behaviour is somewhat predictable.

“Yellow jackets tend to only be aggressive if provoked or if they feel their nest is threatened,” says Bill Melville, quality assurance director in the pest management industry. Homeowners should monitor their homes frequently for hives and nests.

When food is brought outdoors, special precautions should be taken. “When picnicking outdoors,” says Melville, “keep food in tightly sealed containers and cover pop cans, as yellow jackets often enter cans unseen.”

Treatment Tips:

If all precaution fails, and a bee sting or yellow jacket sting occurs, panicking could worsen the outcome. Move as calmly as possible away from the area, brushing away the pest.

Although yellow jackets can sting repeatedly and fly away to sting another day, bees leave their stingers in the skin. If stung by a bee, remove the stinger quickly by scraping it with a fingernail: squeezing the area surrounding the stinger forces more venom into the skin.

Insect bites can be treated with a cold, moist cloth three to four times a day for 15 minutes at a time. Hydrocortisone cream or calamine lotion helps reduce itching and swelling. Finally, resting the affected area on a pillow above the level of the heart helps prevent further swelling.

And after a run-in with yellow jackets, bees, or any other outdoor insect out to get you, there may be no better remedy than a good, long rest - indoors, of course!

Article by, Jim Tipton, Reprinted with permission from Senior Living Magazine, www.seniorlivingmag.com

2. Ask the Experts:

My Mother Refuses to Discuss Finances With Me; Doesn’t She Trust Me?

A - Financial matters are often the last bastion of control, so you must reassure your mom that knowing doesn’t mean taking over:

Remind her that all decisions she has made about her care and well-being will be respected, but they must be documented – are Powers of Attorney and a Will in place?

Explain that to carry out her wishes, you need to know the relevant players now, not when a crisis occurs.

Meet her banker, accountant, financial advisor, insurance agent and lawyer before they need to contact you in a crisis.

Help simplify her banking arrangements by using electronic payments, direct deposits and consolidating accounts into one branch.

Try not to take her attitude personally; your mom may be trying to spare you time and effort. As you work together on a solution, your mother may feel comfortable sharing more information and, ultimately, more responsibility.

This information was provided by, Pat M. Irwin, BA, AICB, CPCA, is founder and president of ElderCareCanada, a single-source consulting firm for adult children and their families, addressing all aspects of elder care - www.eldercarecanada.ca

3. Heart Healthy Recipe:

Chocolate Cake with Raspberries

This cake is so moist and chocolatey no one will ever guess it is good for you, too! Makes 10 servings.

Ingredients -

¼ cup (50 mL) canola oil,

¾ cup (175 mL) lightly packed brown sugar,

1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla,

1 egg,

1 egg white,

½ cup (125 mL) cocoa powder,

1 cup (250 mL) whole-wheat flour,

1 tsp (5 mL) baking powder,

½ tsp (2 mL) baking soda,

1 cup (250 mL) plain, fat-free yogurt,

1 tbsp (15 mL) almond flavoured liqueur (optional),

2 cups (500 mL) whole fresh raspberries,

¼ cup (50 mL) apple jelly, melted, Icing sugar for dusting (optional)

Directions -

Preheat oven to 350º F (180º C).

Line the bottom of a spring form pan with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, sugar, vanilla, egg and egg white.

In a second bowl, combine the cocoa powder, flour, baking powder and baking soda.Add it slowly to the first bowl. Gently mix in the yogurt.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 35 to 40 minutes.

While the cake is still hot, brush the liqueur over the top (if using). Let cool. Loosen the edge of the cake from the spring form pan and remove the cake. Place the raspberries on the top of the cake and brush on the melted apple jelly. Dust with icing sugar if desired.

Nutritional Information Per Serving (1/10 of cake) - Calories: 206, Protein: 5 g, Total fat: 7 g, Saturated fat: 1 g, Dietary cholesterol: 19 mg, Carbohydrate: 34 g, Dietary fibre: 4 g, Sodium: 127 mg, Potassium: 270 mg

Developed by Nadine Day, RD. ©The Heart and Stroke Foundation

4. Quote or Joke of the Month:

The Ultimate Human Freedom

"Every human has four endowments - self awareness, conscience, independent will and creative imagination. These give us the ultimate human freedom...The power to choose, to respond, to change."

Stephen R. Covey

5. Did you know?:

Sun Myths - Know the Facts

Myth: The sun is not damaging on a cloudy day

Fact: Cloudy days can allow up to 70% of UV rays to penetrate the clouds; reflecting off of water, sand and even snow.

Myth: The sun is the best way to get vitamin D

Fact: While sun exposure will indeed boost your body's vitamin D levels, it also increases skin damage and your chance of developing skin cancer. Vitamin supplements provide the same benefits, without the risks.

Myth: One sunburn can't hurt

Fact: One blistering sunburn in childhood or adolescence more than doubles a persons chances of developing melanoma later in life. A person's risk for melanoma also doubles if he or she has had five or more sunburns at any age.

Myth: Only older people get skin cancer

Fact: Young people are just as susceptible to skin cancer as older people. In fact, melanoma is the second most common cancer among those aged 15 to 34.

Myth: Skin cancer appears only in sun exposed areas

Fact: Melanoma can occur in areas not normally exposed to the sun, including the abdomen, groin and the soles of your feet.

Myth: Doctors always find melanomas

Fact: You should not rely on your doctor as your only means of detection. It's important to do skin self-examinations regularly and keep track of the appearance of new moles or changes to an existing one.

For more information about sun safety, melanoma and how to properly check your moles, please visit www.saveyourskin.ca

Article provided by News Canada www.newscanada.com, Reprinted with permission from Senior Living Magazine, www.seniorlivingmag.com

6. Seniors Tip:

Ensure Your Pets Have a Safe Trip

If you are going to travel with your companion animal, whether a cat, dog, or perhaps a reptile or other creature, you need to ensure it will be kept safe from harm and injury. Here are a few tips from the Canada Food Inspection Agency for making your pet’s journey a safe one.

Health CheckIt is always a good idea to check the health of your pet before any long trip to make sure it is fit to travel. Health certificates or other documentation may be required when taking your pet on an airplane or to another country, including the United States. Find out in advance what will be required.

In Your VehicleContain your pet. Animals that could distract the driver should be contained. Some animals, such as cats, are more comfortable in a vehicle when they are in a carrier. Pets should not be allowed to roam freely in the back of pick-up trucks or be exposed in any way to flying debris.

Watch the weather. Animals should not be kept in parked vehicles for long periods of time, especially in hot or cold weather. Temperatures inside a vehicle can quickly rise or fall to levels that could cause your pet to suffer or even die. If you must leave your pet in a vehicle for a short period of time in hot weather, ensure it has fresh water and leave windows open a little on either side of the vehicle to create a cross-breeze.

Provide food, water and rest. On long trips, make sure your pet has food and water, and make sure that you make regular stops so it can rest or get out and walk around.

For more information about how to keep your pet safe from harm during travel, contact the Canadian Food Inspection Agency at 1-800-442-2342 or see www.inspection.gc.ca

Source: www.seniorsgotravel.com

- End -


See you next month !

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Issue Article of the Month
by Diane Hoffmann

Feature article

Ask the Experts

Heart Healthy Recipe

Quote or Joke of the Month

Did you know?

Seniors Tips