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September is Healthy Aging Month

September is Healthy Aging Month

August 31, 2016

Healthy Aging PCW PhotoAs we get older, we tend to become less motivated and forget about the importance of staying healthy… not only physically, but more importantly, mentally and emotionally. Healthy Aging Month is an annual health observance that was founded by Carolyn Worthington over 20 years ago to help spread awareness and focus attention on the positive aspects of growing older. What better time of the year to focus on healthy aging than September?

September is the perfect time to celebrate Healthy Aging Month because it is a time when many people think about getting started on new tasks after the summer. You could say it’s almost like the adult version of going “back to school.” That being said, let’s talk a little bit more about healthy aging.

Given advances in modern medicine, it’s no surprise that Americans are living longer now than ever before, with people reaching ages well into their 70s, 80s, and beyond. According to the Population Reference Bureau, the number of Americans ages 65 and older is projected to more than double from 46 million today to over 98 million by 2060. Further, the average U.S. life expectancy has increased from 68 years in 1950 to 79 years in 2013. With the continuing increase of elders in America, it is important to be educated on healthy aging.

Remember, what’s important to realize is that it’s never too late to reinvent yourself, no matter how old you are. Do your best to stray away from the myths and stereotypes embedded into you for years, and take control of your life by following these tips:

Act the age that makes you happy. Think about the happiest time of your life, and try to put yourself back into that time. By doing so, you will instantly start to feel better about yourself. There is no rule in life that says you have to act a certain age!

Maintain a positive attitude. Keep a positive attitude in everything you do, and stop yourself from complaining. It is proven to get rid of ongoing feelings of stress and depression that could easily get the best of you as you get older. Distance yourself from all of the negative people in your life who could stop you from moving forward. By surrounding yourself with positive people, you can maintain a positive attitude and become an overall happier person.

Socialize. Surrounding yourself with positive people will not only stop you from complaining that you have no friends or family, but open you up to new experiences you never thought you’d have at your advancing age. Volunteer your time, take a class, or go out to lunch once in a while.

Stay Active. Older adults who exercise regularly, and make efforts to improve their overall physical and mental health, are less likely to suffer from illnesses or health problems such as dementia, cardiovascular disease, and reduced coordination, balance, and joint mobility. Safe, easy, and comfortable forms of exercise include walking, swimming and cycling. Remember to check with your doctor before you start a new exercise routine.

Stay on top of your preventive visit and yearly wellness exams. If you haven’t already done so, make the time to set up your annual physical and other health screenings. This will give you a peace of mind and keep you up to date on your health. For a list of recommended annual health screenings, visit www.empireblue.com.

By being aware of your age and maintaining a healthy lifestyle, you will find yourself looking forward to what’s next in life, rather than looking at your past and wishing you were younger again. Remember, aging does not have to be a scary process. Who says you can’t do something different from anything you’ve done before? Now is the time to take charge of your life.

To learn more about Healthy Aging Month, visit http://healthyaging.net/.