agebuzz weekly

July 21st, 2016

Good morning and welcome to agebuzz… Headlining today’s topics:

Can You Hear Me Now? Alternatives to Hearing Aids: More than 80% of those over 85 have age-related hearing loss. But a substantial portion of hard-of-hearing older individuals haven’t done anything to remedy the condition. Hearing aids are expensive, not covered by Medicare and seem to have stigma attached to them.  Now, however, new technology-assisted personal sound amplification products (PSAPs) have entered the market, often for a fraction of the cost of a set of hearing aids. While this new market is unregulated and untested for the long term, many of these new devices have been assessed by professionals to rival the quality and result of hearing aids. Which products might work for you? Listen up and Read This. 

Machine Maid: Helper Robots Are On The Horizon: Auto manufacturer Toyota has designs on your home: actually designs on the helpers in your home. Given that 25% of the Japanese population is over theage of 65, Toyota has determined that it’s next market expansion will be developing affordable helper robots specially designed to care for elderly individuals in their homes. On the verge of buying several robotics companies, Toyota anticipates a range of robots and other products to help older personsage in place.  Among the products in development: a wheelchair that scales stairs and a robot to retrieve objects for those who are bedridden. Looking for the perfect Mr. Robot? Read This.

Age Appropriate: A Style Blogger For The 50+: With an eye toward guiding you to current styles for your current age, British blogger Alyson Walsh is one hip and elegant woman. This freelance journalist and former magazine editor features commentary, photos and interviews on her stylish blog, “That’s Not My Age.” With regular postings on everything from clothes to makeup to style and travel,  the 53 year old Walsh’s motto is “You don’t have to have youth to have style.” Interested in a free subscription to her style blog?Read and Sign Up Here

The Conversation Project: How To Talk The Talk: The statistics are stark: 90% of people say that talking to loved ones about end of life medical decisions is important: but only 27% have done so.  As hard and awkward as it is to think about medical choices that will confront you or loved ones as death approaches, it’s even harder to have those conversations when an ambulance arrives or in the ICU. None of us has easy facility with the language these conversations require. That’s where The Conversation Project comes in. Started by nationally renowned columnist Ellen Goodman, and featuring an esteemed advisory board of some of the most knowledgeable professionals out there, The Conversation Project website has downloadable conversation guides, in a host of languages, to help you start the talk and figure out your values and preferences.  Before you can walk the walk, you need to talk the talk: so Read This. 

Old Time Politics: The Aging Of Presidential Contenders: It’s political convention time and among the many interesting characteristics of the major contenders, one has gone virtually undiscussed: These are the oldest presidential contenders this country has ever had. Donald Trump is 70 years old and Hillary Clinton will be 69 right before November’s election. In previous elections, the age of the candidates, whether young or old, was addressed and debated in the media. But this time around, perhaps because they are both older, there is little mention of their ages. In fact, in a recent McClatchy-Marist poll, 71% of registered voters said they think advanced age is a plus in a candidate. Given the historic nature of both of their candidacies, perhaps other characteristics “trump” age...Need to know more?Read This.

Eyes Wide Open: Restoring Vision To Elders in Nepal:  In a remote Himalayan mountain village in Nepal, Manisara and Durga, a couple married 50 years, struggled to maintain their rustic life.  After decades in the harsh sun, their vision was ruined through cataracts, leaving them unable to navigate and dependent on their family. Yet through the extraordinary efforts of the Seva Foundation, the couple was offered the opportunity of surgery to restore their vision. Now available on HBO, “Open Your Eyes” is the film that chronicles the couple’s fear and reluctance to leave the mountain yet strong desire to be able to see their children and grandchildren, and their eventual journey down the mountain for the sight restoring surgery. To read more about the making of the film, and to watch the trailer, Go Here.

THE LAST WORD: “By the time you’re eighty years old, you’ve learned everything.  You only have to remember it.”  George Burns