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Author: Nikki Boyd

MEMORY CAFE CONVERSATION | REFRESHMENTS | ACTIVITIES | FUN *Brought to you by: Right at Home- In Home Care & Assistance, Boston and North Second Tuesday of the Month 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm St Andrew’s Episcopal Church 135 Lafayette Street | Marblehead, MA 01945 Fall Series Sept-Dec 2019: Sept 10th, 2019 Oct 8th, 2019 Nov 12th, 2019 Dec 10th, 2019 A Memory Cafe is a welcoming and safe place for people with forgetfulness or other changes in their thinking and for their family and friends to come together. Each Memory Cafe is unique. Some cafe’s invite guest artists, some offer education about memory changes, and some are just for relaxing and chatting. All cafe’s share these goals: To help guests feel comfortable and know they are not alone. Cafes are a place to talk with others who understand what you are going through, to leave behind limitations and instead focus on strengths. In addition, cafes are a place to enjoy each other’s company, and to explore something new. Please note, persons who require personal assistance must be accompanied by a caregiver. For a list of memory cafe’s, please visit www.jfcsboston.org/ MemoryCafeDirectory CONTACT INFORMATION: To RSVP and for volunteer opportunities, contact Celeste Begley P: 781.548.0017 E: cbegley@rightathomemass.com

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November 18, 2019

Having to deal with Type 2 Diabetes is not pleasant, especially during the holidays when you are surrounded by sweets and abundant amounts of food. Self-control is expected but it’s not as easy as it seems. Here are 5 tips to help you stay healthy while you celebrate. These tips are suggested by Steven Rothschild, MD. He is a family medicine doctor and the founder of Rush University Family Physicians. 

1. Lighten up holiday recipes

Reducing the amount of sugar and carbohydrates, like white flour, white rice and other processed grains, in your meal may be helpful. Trim the amount of fat in baking recipes. For instance, if a recipe suggests using oil, use half that amount and replace it with something else such as unsweetened apple sauce.

2. Let the plate be your guide when making choices

Keeping an eye out on the amount of food you eat is helpful because eating too much can affect your blood sugar levels. An interesting measurement to keep in mind for your lean meat portion is that it be about the size of a deck of cards. Carbohydrate servings , such as pasta or rice, should be equal to the size of a fist.

An easy strategy for portion control is to think of your plate being cut into four sections:

  • Lean protein — should take up one quarter of your plate
  • Carbohydrates (such as grains, pasta and some vegetables like potatoes and corn) — should occupy another quarter of your plate
  • Green vegetables and other non-starch vegetables (such as salads, broccoli, green beans, carrots, cauliflower, asparagus, etc.) — should take up the remaining half your plate. Just make sure not to cook those veggies in oil or butter, or drown them in heavy dressings, dips or sauces.

And make mindful choices when preparing your plate.

Pick your favorite high carbohydrate or high fat food and have a reasonable serving of that, but then cut back in other areas. For example, you could decide that you’d like to have a serving of sweet potatoes instead of a serving of bread or mashed potatoes. So you’re substituting one carbohydrate for another, not eating both.

3. Exercising

Going out for at least 30 minutes a day can be very beneficial. It can improve blood sugars, decrease the risk of heart disease, and help you lose weight. Although, realistically, it’s difficult to exercise 30 minutes a day especially if you aren’t used to the routine. If you start doing some at home exercises more frequently or joining a program, it might be easier to continue in the log run. If you find yourself tied up during the holidays to exercise, try doing a 15 minute workout or three 10-minute stints a few times per week.

4. Managing Stress

Experiencing stress during the holidays is normal, but can be managed with patience, relaxing activities such as yoga, meditation, and deep breathing exercises.

5. Try to quit smoking

If you are a frequent smoker, try to make your new years resolution to quit. While smoking is bad for everyone’s health, it is especially harmful for people with diabetes. Nicotine in cigarette smoke causes large and small blood vessels to harden and narrow, resulting in reduced blood flow to the rest of your body.

These tips aren’t just for diabetics — they’re good advice for anyone who’s trying to lead a healthier lifestyle and prevent serious health problems, including diabetes, down the road. It’s important to start taking steps now to keep yourself and your family healthy for life.

 

 

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MEMORY CAFE CONVERSATION | REFRESHMENTS | ACTIVITIES | FUN *Brought to you by: Right at Home- In Home Care & Assistance, Boston and North Second Tuesday of the Month 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm St Andrew’s Episcopal Church 135 Lafayette Street | Marblehead, MA 01945 Fall Series Sept-Dec 2019: Sept 10th, 2019 Oct 8th, 2019 Nov 12th, 2019 Dec 10th, 2019 A Memory Cafe is a welcoming and safe place for people with forgetfulness or other changes in their thinking and for their family and friends to come together. Each Memory Cafe is unique. Some cafe’s invite guest artists, some offer education about memory changes, and some are just for relaxing and chatting. All cafe’s share these goals: To help guests feel comfortable and know they are not alone. Cafes are a place to talk with others who understand what you are going through, to leave behind limitations and instead focus on strengths. In addition, cafes are a place to enjoy each other’s company, and to explore something new. Please note, persons who require personal assistance must be accompanied by a caregiver. For a list of memory cafe’s, please visit www.jfcsboston.org/ MemoryCafeDirectory CONTACT INFORMATION: To RSVP and for volunteer opportunities, contact Celeste Begley P: 781.548.0017 E: cbegley@rightathomemass.com

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 CEU – Dementia Live TM When: Wednesday, November 6, 2019 from 4:30 PM to 7:00 PM EST Where: Arete Rehab 1 Stiles Road Suite 203 Salem, NH 03079 Driving Directions Dementia LiveTM offers a unique inside-out understanding of dementia and aging. Participants will gain a heightened awareness of the challenges faced by those who live with dementia. Learn tips and tools to improve communications and care. Please allow two hours for this engaging and remarkable experience. Two CEU credits will be available to Certified Case Managers, Social Workers and Registered Nurses. Get more information Register Now! This is a wonderful program offered by AGE-ucate , Right at Home, and pre-approved by PACE. We have limited space so register early. Sincerely, Nancy VanBenschoten Arete Rehab nvanbenschoten@areterehab.com 855-390-7774

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November 6, 2019

Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease that affects an individuals brain and disrupts their thinking skills and cognitive abilities. It affects over 5.5 million Americans today. Memory loss and confusion are among the main symptoms that people tend to notice right away. As the disease progresses, communication, language, decision making, movement problems, and behavioral problems may also be present.

Although the disease does have its complications, that doesn’t mean that those experiencing it have to stop living their day to day lives.

Here are some tips for living with Alzheimer’s:

1. Develop a daily routine and write down important dates! Make a daily plan to keep track of the few tasks you want to accomplish each day. Having a schedule can reduce the time you spend figuring out what needs to be done and when, and makes you more successful in accomplishing your goals and limiting mistakes.

 

 

2. Approach one task at a time and don’t get stuck. Give yourself enough time to complete a task. Don’t pressure yourself to succeed. If something becomes too difficult, take a break and try again later.

3. Recognize the triggers that cause you stress. What are the triggers that cause you anxiety, worry or stress? For example, if others are hurrying you, explain what you are trying to accomplish and ask that they provide you the time needed to be successful. Knowing what causes stress allows you to make plans in advance or decisions about the type of activities/tasks you choose to participate in.

4. Join a recreational center/program with people of the same age who might also be dealing with the same issue. It is always good to be surrounded by a community than live in solitude, especially when dealing with the disease.

Looking forward

These tips will take time to adjust to, but they might help in dealing with Alzheimer’s disease. Other options to look into are participating in clinical research. As part of Alzheimer’s awareness month, ActivMed Practices and Research is enrolling for an Alzheimer’s study at no cost to you or your family!! To learn more and see if you qualify, click here or call us directly at 978-655-7155!

 

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October 30, 2019

Looking for something to do during your spare time? We got you covered!

ActivMed Practices and Research is seeking volunteers ages 18 years or older to help educate our local community about Dementia & Alzheimer’s Disease!

Call Christine today to get involved at 978-992-4192

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Posted in Alzheimer's, Blog

  CITY OF METHUEN INVITES YOU TO AN INFORMATIONAL EVENT ON MAKING METHUEN AN AGE/DEMENTIA FRIENDLY COMMUNITY OCTOBER 29, 2019 SANBORN HALL – 90 HAMPSHIRE STREET 9-11 AM We are gathering to share ideas for this initiative and to hear your thoughts and comments. Speakers will include representatives from the Senior Center, Police Department, ActivMed, the Library and Methuen Village Refreshments will be served

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October 23, 2019

 

Overview

Depression is never easy to handle especially if you have experienced it for a long time. You might be motivated one day, and then suddenly feel an overwhelming sadness the next day. Taking a shower, eating, or even getting out of bed seems like a chore. You may no longer have the same amount of interest in activities you used to, and often you may just want to be left alone. Maybe you feel that the only person who understands you is yourself. That’s understandable. You are not to blame for feeling depressed.

Depression is the most common mental disorder in the country. Millions of Americans suffer from some form of depression every year. That being said, you are not alone. There are many resources to help including free screenings, therapy, support groups, exercising, and many more. However, admitting that you want help is the first step to living a happier and healthier life.

 

Statistics

 

Causes

There is truly no one cause for depression. It depends on a unique combination of an individuals genetic makeup and environmental conditions. The following are a few factors that may contribute to depression:

  • The brain’s physical structure or chemistry
  • History of depression in the family
  • History of other disorders (anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder)
  • Stressful, traumatic events (abuse, constant rejection, death of a loved one, financial issues)
  • Hormone changes (menstrual cycles, pregnancy)
  • Certain medications (sleeping aids, blood pressure medication)

 

Signs

Most common signs and symptoms of depression:

  • Loss of interest in activities that were once enjoyable
  • Fatigue and lack of energy
  • Appetite or weight changes
  • Physical symptoms such as headaches, stomachaches, or back pain
  • Recurrent thoughts of suicide
  • Difficulty sleeping, sleep disturbances, and/or having a hard time getting out of bed
  • Difficulty thinking clearly, making decisions, or concentrating
  • Feeling of isolation or wanting to be isolated for long periods of time

 

Treatment Options

  • Sign up for clinical trial and/or free screenings for depression
  • Therapy – speaking with a psychologist
  • Medication
  • Exercise, Yoga, Meditation
  • Keeping a journal (writing down your thoughts instead of bottling them up)
  • Write short and long-term goals for yourself
  • Calling a depression hotline if you don’t feel comfortable talking to a therapist
  • Seeking support groups, or talking to someone you feel close to

 

Clinical Research

Participating in a clinical trial is available as a treatment option. The benefits of volunteering for a study include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Helping future and current generations
  • You or your loved one may have access to new treatments, not available to the public
  • Data collected from the results is used to determine whether a new medication or therapy is safe and effective.

ActivMed Practices & Research along with other clinical practices is determined to find a cure to depression by conducting clinical trials. If you or someone you know is diagnosed with depression or is not sure whether they have depression learn more about our study options might be the right decision. To learn about these study opportunities and see if you qualify, click HERE.

 

 Looking Forward

Recovery is a slow process, but with time treatment options can be very helpful. At the end of the day, it is not a race, and you shouldn’t put too much pressure on yourself to get better right away. Depression affects people of all ages, races, ethnicity, and backgrounds. Depression can be deceiving in the sense that the people who appear to be “fine” are actually the people who are struggling with it the most. It is also good to help others who suffer from depression as well. Together we can be healthier.

 

References (Chart taken from)

https://bit.ly/2kq6kFo

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Alzheimer’s Cafe at the Children’s Museum of New Hampshire Come enjoy an afternoon with us!   The Alzheimer’s Cafe at the Children’s Museum of New Hampshire is a welcoming place where people living with dementia, along with their care partners and family members, come together for a casual social gathering each month. Spend an afternoon enjoying interesting conversation with new friends.   The Alzheimer’s Cafe happens on the 3rd Thursday of each month from 2-4pm at the Children’s Museum of New Hampshire. Refreshments are served.   No reservations necessary. Free of charge, but donations are welcome. For more information, please contact Paula Rais at 603-742-2002 or email paula@childrens-museum.org www.childrens-museum.org

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October 17, 2019

Atopic Dermatitis is a chronic medical condition that has increased over the past two to three decades. It affects between 15-30% of children and 2-10% of adults. This condition causes the skin to become dry, red, sensitive, raw, and extremely itchy.

Why do I have eczema? 

As most of us already know, Eczema can be a result of the cold air during the winter, long-hot showers, and multilayered clothing, however there is a nutrition factor that might actually be making the condition worse.

Foods that trigger Atopic Dermatitis Outbreaks 

The top foods that trigger these outbreaks include

  • milk
  • soy
  • peanuts
  • eggs

There is an extended list of certain foods that trigger the Atopic Dermatitis Outbreak. Click here to learn more.

Foods that relieve the symptoms 

Anti-inflammatory foods such as fish, and foods in high in flavonoids and probiotics. Fish that contain the highest levels of anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids are salmon, mackerel, herring, sardines, and albacore tuna.

Treatment options

Although there are many available options for treating Atopic Dermatitis, the best solutions are as follows:

  • Using mild soaps, and laundry detergents to avoid irritation of the skin
  • Drinking plenty of water to replenish the body’s moisture
  • Managing the stress levels with yoga, meditation, and plenty of exercise
  • Avoid rubbing your skin to prevent further itching and discomfort
  • Avoid and wool like clothing and nylon clothing and bedding
  • Take vitamin D supplement daily

 

Looking ahead

While there isn’t yet a definitive eczema cure, awareness of the possible triggers, beneficial foods, and smart personal habits can keep your itch at bay to make you feel comfortable in your own skin. ActivMed Practices and Research Inc. is enrolling for a study on Atopic Dermatitis. To learn more and see if you qualify, click here.

 

 

 

 

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October 16, 2019

As the cold and flu season is closely approaching, all must take precaution especially those individuals who are much older. Development of a respiratory tract infection is very common during this time.

Upper respiratory infections (URIs) are infections affecting the upper part of the respiratory tract including the nose, sinuses, pharynx, and larynx. They are very common infections, with the US alone seeing more than 3 million cases each year. Some examples of URIs are the common cold, rhinitis, sinus infections, and laryngitis.

Symptoms of URI

  • Nasal congestion
  • sneezing
  • coughing
  • scratchy or sore throat
  • headache
  • fever
  • mucus production

Prevention

  • avoiding people who are ill;
  • if you are ill, remain at home until you are no longer contagious;
  • avoid touching your nose, eyes, and mouth with unwashed hands;
  • cover your cough and sneeze; sneezes and coughs should be covered with the elbow or sleeve – not the hand
  • wash your hands often, and properly (20 seconds or more with soap and warm water).
  • modify your lifestyle through smoking cessation and stress management, which may decrease your susceptibility to catching the common cold

Clinical Research Study

Although flu vaccines are an option, clinical trails are enrolling for those suffering with respiratory tract infection. If you or a loved one is dealing with this, participating in a research study might be an option. ActivMed Practices & Research is now enrolling those who qualify for the study. To learn more click here.

 

 

 

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October 15, 2019

Type 2 diabetes is a chronic condition that affects the way your body metabolizes sugar, which is an important source of fuel for your body. With type 2 diabetes, your body either resists the effects of insulin — a hormone that regulates the movement of sugar into your cells — or doesn’t produce enough insulin to maintain normal glucose levels. Type 2 diabetes used to be known as adult-onset diabetes, but today more children are being diagnosed with the disorder, probably due to the rise in childhood obesity. There’s no cure for type 2 diabetes, but losing weight, eating well and exercising can help manage the disease.

Clinical Research

If your current treatment options don’t seem to be working for you, consider participating in a clinical research study. ActivMed Practices and Research is enrolling for a Type 2 Diabetes Study.

Learn more here and see if you are eligible to participate.

Symptoms 

  • Increased thirst
  • Blurred vision
  • Fatigue
  • Slow-healing sores
  • Frequent infections
  • Frequent urination
  • Areas of darkened skin, such as the armpits and neck

Tips for Management & Prevention

Healthy lifestyle choices can help prevent type 2 diabetes, and that’s true even if you have diabetes in your family. Some tips include:

  • Eating healthy foods. Choose foods lower in fat and calories and higher in fiber. Focus on fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
  • Getting active. Aim for a minimum of 30 to 60 minutes of moderate physical activity — or 15 to 30 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity — on most days. Take a brisk daily walk. Ride a bike. Swim laps. If you can’t fit in a long workout, spread your activity throughout the day.
  • Losing weight. If you’re overweight, losing 5 to 10 percent of your body weight can reduce the risk of diabetes. To keep your weight in a healthy range, focus on permanent changes to your eating and exercise habits. Motivate yourself by remembering the benefits of losing weight, such as a healthier heart, more energy and improved self-esteem.
  • Avoiding being sedentary for long periods. Sitting still for long periods can increase your risk of type 2 diabetes. Try to get up every 30 minutes and move around for at least a few minutes.

 

 

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October 11, 2019

 

We are excited to announce our new Free Podcast.

The ActivMed Clinical Research Podcast is designed to introduce the public to clinical studies, the testing of new medications and medical devices on human subjects prior to their approval for use by the FDA.  The podcast describes what clinical studies are, how they are conducted and the benefits they offer study volunteers and humanity as a whole.

Studies show that if people knew a clinical trial was an option they would be willing to consider participating.

Located North of Boston in Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire, ActivMed allows people the ability to participate in research locally.

Our host Jack Beaton is a Research Assistant and is excited to share many topics to help create awareness for clinical research. Tune in for lots of great topics!

Our first episode will answer frequently asked questions regarding the clinical study process.

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October 9, 2019

 

What is it? 

Hidradenitis Suppurativa (HS) is a chronic, inflammatory skin disease characterized by painful nodules and abscesses which form most commonly in sensitive areas: under arms and breasts, along buttocks and groin, though HS may appear anywhere there is hair.

When symptoms first appear, they appear as painful, recurrent pimples or cysts in telltale areas. Because of its appearance and location, HS is often misdiagnosed as ingrown hairs, folliculitis, staph infection, cellulitis, or an STD. But unlike those conditions, HS cannot be cured and the lesions left behind will often refill, have difficulty healing, and leave behind scars.

Women are diagnosed with HS 3x more often than men and their symptoms tend to start around puberty or other times of hormonal changes like pregnancy, postpartum, or changes in hormonal birth control.

 

Treatment options

Treatment with medications, surgery or both may help control symptoms and prevent complications. Some doctors may prescribe the following medications:

  • Antibiotic creams. Mild symptoms might be managed with topical creams that fight infections, such as clindamycin and gentamicin.
  • Systemic drugs. For more widespread diseases, antibiotics taken by mouth.
  • Pain medication.If over-the-counter pain relievers don’t help, your doctor may prescribe a stronger type.

 

Clinical Research Studies 

ActivMed Practices and Research is enrolling for a clinical research study that may be an option for those struggling with Hidradenitis Suppurativa. To learn more about the study and see if you qualify, click here.

 

Outlook 

Although there is no known cure for HS, if you feel that you have mild hidradenitis suppurativa it can be treated with self-care measures by doing the following:

  • Managing your pain
  • Following a daily skin care routine
  • Avoiding tight clothing
  • Avoiding injuring the skin
  • Keeping a healthy weight and staying active
  • Considering altering your diet
  • Avoiding all tobacco products.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Please join us at Greystone Farm for an amazing, complimentary opportunity to hear from Terry Stubbs, President and CEO of ActivMed Practices & Research. Terry will present current medical research trends and treatment for Alzheimer’s and Dementia. If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or dementia, this talk is designed for you!    

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MEMORY CAFE CONVERSATION | REFRESHMENTS | ACTIVITIES | FUN *Brought to you by: Right at Home- In Home Care & Assistance, Boston and North Second Tuesday of the Month 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm St Andrew’s Episcopal Church 135 Lafayette Street | Marblehead, MA 01945 Fall Series Sept-Dec 2019: Sept 10th, 2019 Oct 8th, 2019 Nov 12th, 2019 Dec 10th, 2019 A Memory Cafe is a welcoming and safe place for people with forgetfulness or other changes in their thinking and for their family and friends to come together. Each Memory Cafe is unique. Some cafe’s invite guest artists, some offer education about memory changes, and some are just for relaxing and chatting. All cafe’s share these goals: To help guests feel comfortable and know they are not alone. Cafes are a place to talk with others who understand what you are going through, to leave behind limitations and instead focus on strengths. In addition, cafes are a place to enjoy each other’s company, and to explore something new. Please note, persons who require personal assistance must be accompanied by a caregiver. For a list of memory cafe’s, please visit www.jfcsboston.org/ MemoryCafeDirectory CONTACT INFORMATION: To RSVP and for volunteer opportunities, contact Celeste Begley P: 781.548.0017 E: cbegley@rightathomemass.com

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October 4, 2019

Celiac disease is a condition where the immune system responds abnormally to gluten. It can cause damage to the lining of the small intestine. The actual cause of celiac disease is unclear, but it seems to be a combination of genetics and environment. Celiac disease can be painful and difficult to handle. You don’t have to deal with it alone. If you feel like your current treatment options are not working, a study option might be available to you if you qualify. You can find more information about the study currently enrolling here.

What is gluten?

The treatment for celiac disease is a strict and complete avoidance of gluten. Gluten is a protein particle found in wheat, barley, rye, related grains and wheat additives. Wheat additives are the most common additive in American food products and can hide in a lot of food products that we consume as a society. This makes it very important for those with celiac disease to read all food labels closely.

Foods containing gluten include:
• Flour
• Breads
• Crackers
• Muffins
• Pasta
• Cereals
• Baking mixes
• Sauces, spices, condiments and salad dressings
• Some medications and vitamin supplements

Gluten-free foods include:
• Rice
• Corn
• Potatoes
• Quinoa, millet, buckwheat and soybeans
• Milk, cheese and other dairy products
• Fruits and vegetables
• Meat and eggs

Common Symptoms of Celiac

• Abdominal pain
• Bloating
• Diarrhea or constipation
• Fatigue
• Weight loss (or failure to thrive in children)

Statistics

Based on the chart below, approximately 17 percent of people are misdiagnosed or undiagnosed. Celiac patients may also be asymptomatic, which means that they may have no obvious symptoms of celiac disease. This is why is it important to consult with your primary care provider first if you feel that you are experiencing the symptoms surrounding celiac disease.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  It’s our one-year anniversary of caring for our senior community—so we’re throwing a party. Save the date for a festive evening of food and entertainment. We’re thankful for all the staff, residents, families and others who have made this year great, and we can’t wait to celebrate with you. Thursday, October 3 4 to 7 p.m. Please RSVP by Monday, September 30 RSVP

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September 29, 2019

 

Overview of Depression 

Dealing with depression may feel like you constantly battle with a heavy burden or a shadow of sadness and hopelessness that latches on to you for a long time. Getting out of bed seems like a chore, you may no longer have the same amount of interest in activities as you used to, and often you may just want to be left alone. Maybe you feel that the only person who understands you is yourself. That’s understandable. Depression is an illness, NOT a weakness, and you are not to blame for it.

Depression is the most common mental disorder in the country. Millions of Americans suffer from some form of depression every year. That being said, you are not alone. There are many resources to help including free screenings, therapy, support groups, exercising, and many more. However, admitting that you want help is the first step to living a happier and healthier life.

National Depression Screening Day takes place in October. To view the post discussing this, click HERE.

 

Depression Statistics 

Below is a chart of the percentage of U.S. Adults who have dealt with depression in 2017. The variables range from gender, age, race/ethnicity. Based on the results, most of the people experiencing this major depressive episode were in the 18-25 age range and were identified females. This is not to say that people of other age groups or identified genders are not affected just as much.

Possible Causes of Depression

There is truly not one cause for depression. It depends on a unique combination of an individual’s genetic makeup and environmental conditions.

For instance:

  • The brain’s physical structure or chemistry
  • History of depression in the family
  • History of other disorders (anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder)
  • Stressful, traumatic events (abuse, constant rejection, death of a loved one, financial issues)
  • Hormone changes (menstrual cycles, pregnancy)
  • Certain medications (sleeping aids, blood pressure medication)

 

Signs to Look For

Most common signs and symptoms of depression:

  • Loss of interest in activities that were once enjoyable
  • Fatigue and lack of energy
  • Appetite or weight changes
  • Physical symptoms such as headaches, stomachaches, or back pain
  • Recurrent thoughts of suicide
  • Difficulty sleeping, sleep disturbances, and/or having a hard time getting out of bed
  • Difficulty thinking clearly, making decisions, or concentrating
  • Feelings of isolation or wanting to be isolated for long periods of time

 

Available Treatment Options 

  • Sign up for a clinical trial and/or free screenings for depression
  • Therapy – speaking with a psychologist
  • Medication
  • Exercise (physical and mental), Yoga, Meditation
  • Keeping a journal (writing down your thoughts instead of bottling them up)
  • Write short and long-term goals for yourself
  • Calling a depression hotline if you don’t feel comfortable talking to a therapist
  • Seeking support groups, or talking to someone you feel close to

 

Clinical Research May Be an Option!

As mentioned, participating in a clinical trial is available as a treatment option. The benefits of volunteering for a study include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Helping future and current generations
  • You or your loved one may have access to new treatments, not available to the public
  • Data collected from the results is used to determine whether a new medication or therapy is safe and effective.

ActivMed Practices & Research is passionate about helping those with depression by conducting clinical trials. If you or someone you know is diagnosed with depression or is not sure whether they have depression learn more about our study options might be the right decision. To learn about these study opportunities and see if you qualify, click HERE.

 

Looking Forward

Recovery is a slow process, but these treatment options can be very helpful. However, it is not a race, and you shouldn’t put too much pressure on yourself to get better right away. Depression affects people of all ages, races, ethnicity, and backgrounds. Depression can be deceiving in the sense that the people who appear to be “fine” are actually the people who are struggling with it the most. It is also good to help others who suffer from depression as well. Together we can be healthier.

Reference for this post:

https://www.psycom.net/depression.central.html

 

 

 

 

 

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50 Exhibitors offering Giveaways, Free Raffles and Live Demonstrations in the Gym. The Lions’ Club will be collecting used Eyeglasses. American Red Cross is hosting a Blood Drive 12:30-5:30pm (Register at American Red Cross website or contact Patti Mangini at 603-382-6541, x3900, Email). Please help the OWL FOOD PANTRY by bringing a non perishable food item. Sponsored by TRSD Wellness Committee.

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ActivMed is proud to support the annual Walk to End Alzheimer’s for the 3rd year in a row! Stop by and visit our table as we support the world’s largest events to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s care, support and research. We know that a cure will only come through research and clinical trial participation. Together we can end Alzheimer’s. Event Details   Time: Registration at 8:30a.m. Ceremony at 9:30a.m. Walk at 10a.m. Add to calendar   Location: The Little Harbour School 50 Clough Dr Portsmouth, NH 03801 Map it Contact: Maria Stephanou 617.393.2151 mmstephanou@alz.org  

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Please join us at the Nevin’s Library in Methuen September 20th from 10am – 2pm for a memory screening event! Every year we go to the doctor to get our blood pressure checked, our blood sugar and cholesterol levels, but have you had your memory checked?! Anyone over the age of 50 should get an annual memory screening. Our staff will be on-site at the Library to offer free memory screenings to the community.   A memory screening is a simple and safe evaluation tool that checks memory and other thinking skills. … A screening consists of a series of questions and/or tasks designed to test memory, language skills, thinking ability, and other intellectual functions. This is free and completely confidential. We will also be spreading awareness of the clinical research studies we do right here in Methuen!    

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Our CEO Terry Stubbs and Outreach Manager Laura Rocha will be there!

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September 20, 2019

We are so excited to announce that we will be hosting an Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia Care one-day seminar with Tammy Pozerycki.

November 16, 2019 7:30am- 4:30pmTammy created Alternatives in Alzheimer’s Care to educate, teach, and inspire personal and professional caregivers. Having personal experience with a loved one with Alzheimer’s, Tammy is passionate about helping others invest in themselves and their staff through education programs.

We will be hosting a seminar for those interested in becoming a Certified Dementia Practitioner. 8 hours of continuing education credits are available for: nurses, social workers, dental professionals, and activity professionals (see online registration for cost).

Check out our Calendar Events page for additional information.

 

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Posted in Events

September 19, 2019 6:30 PM- 8:30 PM   Nurse Practitioners & Physician’s Assistants are invited to Dinner and a Presentation on Current Research Trends for Parkinson’s/ Dementia/ Alzheimer’s Disease Featuring Guest Speakers: Robert B. Portney, MD~ Geriatric Neuropsychiatrist, Harvard Medical/ Mass. General Hospital Ruth Lim, MD, PhD~ Chief Medical Officer, New England PET Imaging/ Radiologist at Mass. General Hospital

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Alzheimer’s Cafe at the Children’s Museum of New Hampshire Come enjoy an afternoon with us!   The Alzheimer’s Cafe at the Children’s Museum of New Hampshire is a welcoming place where people living with dementia, along with their care partners and family members, come together for a casual social gathering each month. Spend an afternoon enjoying interesting conversation with new friends.   The Alzheimer’s Cafe happens on the 3rd Thursday of each month from 2-4pm at the Children’s Museum of New Hampshire. Refreshments are served.   No reservations necessary. Free of charge, but donations are welcome. For more information, please contact Paula Rais at 603-742-2002 or email paula@childrens-museum.org www.childrens-museum.org

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September 17, 2019

Respiratory infections, like RSV and pneumonia, continue to wreak havoc on the elderly population year after year. Some call it a “hidden epidemic”. To better understand why the elderly are more vulnerable to respiratory infections, we need to look at what happens to our bodies internally as we grow older.

The Toll of Time

As we age, our immune systems become less effective, called immunosenescence. The immune response decline is different for everyone after age 65. However, everyone after that age is more susceptible to infections than when they were younger.

Risk Factors

With a less effective immune system combined with the increase and severity of a respiratory tract infection, the results can be life-threatening. Some risk factors include:

  • Chronic Conditions- Heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and COPD are a few examples. Conditions that affect the ability to produce a strong cough can be especially dangerous.
  • Infectious Environments- Any place where sick people gather for treatment or are living, such as hospitals and nursing homes.

 

Prevention

Experts agree that prevention is still the best defense against respiratory infection. The CDC has the following recommendations when it comes to reducing the chances of contracting a respiratory infection:

 

  • Wash Your Hands Often Use soap and water for 20 seconds. If soap is not available, use alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Keep Up With Regular Vaccinations: Keep up to date on recommended vaccines
  • Keep Hands off Your Face- Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
  • Avoid Close Contact with Sick People- Avoid kissing, sharing drinks, or sharing eating utensils with people who have symptoms of being sick
  • Cover Coughs and Sneezes- Cover mouth and nose with a tissue when you sneeze or cough. Throw tissues in the trash after
  • Clean/Disinfect Surfaces- Disinfect surfaces that are frequently touched, such as doorknobs
  • Stay Home When You Are Sick- Staying home (when possible) from work or other public places when you are sick prevents it spreading to others

 

At ActivMed Practices & Research, Inc., we are committed to not only working with patients to find current treatments that will deliver the most impactful results, but also working to develop new treatment options through clinical studies.

We are currently seeking patients for upcoming studies evaluating trial medications that may prevent RTI in those 65 and older. Qualified candidates who participate will receive study-related care at no cost. There is also compensation for travel. To learn more and see how you or someone you love may qualify for a study, please click HERE.

 

References:

https://www.cdc.gov/rsv/factsheet-older-adults.html

https://www.infectioncontroltoday.com/infections/older-adults-higher-risk-respiratory-infections

https://www.aging.com/what-causes-pneumonia-in-the-elderly/

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ActivMed is proud to support the annual Walk to End Alzheimer’s for the 3rd year in a row! Stop by and visit our table as we support the world’s largest events to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s care, support and research. We know that a cure will only come through research and clinical trial participation. Together we can end Alzheimer’s. Event Details Time: Registration at 8:30a.m. Ceremony at 9:30a.m. Walk at 10a.m. Add to calendar Location: Andover Landing @ Brickstone Square 200 Brickstone Square Andover, MA 01810 Map it Contact: Lauren Ritchie 617.868.6718 lritchie@alz.org

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MEMORY CAFE CONVERSATION | REFRESHMENTS | ACTIVITIES | FUN *Brought to you by: Right at Home- In Home Care & Assistance, Boston and North Second Tuesday of the Month 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm St Andrew’s Episcopal Church 135 Lafayette Street | Marblehead, MA 01945 Fall Series Sept-Dec 2019: Sept 10th, 2019 Oct 8th, 2019 Nov 12th, 2019 Dec 10th, 2019 A Memory Cafe is a welcoming and safe place for people with forgetfulness or other changes in their thinking and for their family and friends to come together. Each Memory Cafe is unique. Some cafe’s invite guest artists, some offer education about memory changes, and some are just for relaxing and chatting. All cafe’s share these goals: To help guests feel comfortable and know they are not alone. Cafes are a place to talk with others who understand what you are going through, to leave behind limitations and instead focus on strengths. In addition, cafes are a place to enjoy each other’s company, and to explore something new. Please note, persons who require personal assistance must be accompanied by a caregiver. For a list of memory cafe’s, please visit www.jfcsboston.org/ MemoryCafeDirectory CONTACT INFORMATION: To RSVP and for volunteer opportunities, contact Celeste Begley P: 781.548.0017 E: cbegley@rightathomemass.com

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September 9, 2019

Despite current treatment options, there is still no cure for Alzheimer’s. Current treatment options only temporarily slow the symptoms of dementia and keep them from worsening. Finding more effective options and even a cure comes down to testing new potential treatments via clinical trials.

What is Alzheimer’s?

Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia and is not a normal part of aging. It causes memory loss and other cognitive problems that gradually worsen over time. Eventually, every aspect of a person’s daily life is impacted when they have AD. Early stages impact memory, while later stages come with mood changes and behavioral changes. It can even affect a person’s ability to walk, speak, and swallow.

Although the majority of those affected with AD are over 65, approximately 200,000 Americans under 65 have early-onset Alzheimer’s. On average, a person lives 4-8 years after diagnosis, and up to 20 years depending on various factors. It is the 6th leading cause of death in the U.S.

Don’t Just Hope, Help.

More participants are needed in clinical trials to help evaluate potential treatment options and to find a cure. Through the clinical trial process, more effective treatments and prevention opportunities can be found.

Beta-amyloid protein and biomarker studies that explore what causes AD have provided cutting-edge treatments and led to better medical care. However, none of these advancements are possible without volunteers. Here are some of the benefits of participating in a clinical trial:

  • You can help future generations
  • Participation may help you get more involved in your healthcare
  • You or your loved one may have access to new treatments not available to the public

Volunteers that have a family history of AD, dementia and even those with no history are all needed. The data that is gathered from your results are used to determine whether a new medication or therapy is safe and effective.

ActivMed Practices & Research, like many other research facilities, has joined the fight to cure Alzheimer’s by conducting clinical trials. If you or someone you love is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and are interested in hearing more about our study opportunities, click HERE.

 

References:

https://www.alz.org/alzheimers-dementia/what-is-alzheimers

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Laura Rocha- Outreach Manager to attend monthly meeting for Boston North Senior Service Network Meeting Laura serves on the Steering Committee for this group

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Laura Rocha- Outreach Manager to attend monthly Elder Services Luncheon. To find out how you can connect with ActivMed, contact Laura at 978-655-7155 or email lrocha@activmedresearch.com

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Saturday, October 5, 2019 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Downtown Dover, NH Facebook Road Race | Arts & Crafts | Music | Family Fun Apple Harvest Day is a day-long family event, featuring nearly 350 vendors, great food, live entertainment, and more. The event was first held in 1985 and now draws more than 60,000 people to the City of Dover’s downtown, making it one of the most popular regional festivals.

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August 22, 2019

PRESS RELEASE

For immediate release

Contact:

Natalie Bowers, Acorn Communications

natalie@acorn-communications, 859-486-0058

 

New book helps ‘wake up’ those with memory loss; provides ‘exciting aid in communication with loved ones’

 North Shore, Massachusetts – “Hilda’s Story: New Bedford, Massachusetts”, by Marblehead Resident Siobhan McDonald, is the first book in a series that is specifically designed to foster communication between senior citizens dealing with memory loss and their loved ones who want to communicate with them. The book launched online June 3, 2019 on the Barnes and Nobles website and it is also available through the publisher site, Granger St. Studios.

“Hilda’s Story” is a reflective tale of a woman’s childhood and the domestic activities she performed during her younger years. The story is written as a means to help caregivers, family and friends break through the barriers all too commonly seen in patients with memory loss diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Dementia. The book utilizes illustrations, vintage photographs and a simple plot with built-in questions to enable family members and caregivers to build conversations with their loved ones.

Many people who have read the book to their loved ones report a positive experience. “Usually when I visit my father, he is vacant and distant; often asks the same question ten times. But when I read this book to him, he just came alive! He wanted to talk about his memories of his childhood and what he ate for lunch and the little details of his life. It got him really talking to me and I felt like we shared real quality time together and I felt like I had him back for an hour.” said Caregiver Greg from Gloucester.

The story is simple and intimate. The main character, Hilda, is the daughter of middle-class Portuguese immigrants growing up in the post-World War II era in the coastal Massachusetts city of New Bedford. Details of her domestic life offer the reader and their companion plenty of opportunities to build conversation. Vintage photographs are combined with line drawings to create visual contrast, and other images of objects like a plaid lunch box and a bowl of rice pudding (a staple dessert for children in the 40’s and 50’s) are complemented with questions to encourage lively discussion, such as, “Did you have a favorite clothing store?”, or “Tell me about some of the responsibilities you had growing up.”

By sharing ‘Hilda’s Story’, the interaction between reader and listener can move past the major communication barriers suffered by those with memory loss. Read aloud for entertainment, understanding, comfort, and connection, or simply offer the book for someone to enjoy at their own pace.

 

About the Author & Publisher

Siobhan McDonald came up with the concept of this series (Before Today: Reminiscing & Connecting) through her experience providing Visual Arts workshops to Seniors in Skilled Nursing and Assisted Living Residential settings. She partnered with her sister-in-law, Becky McDonald, to create this book. Siobhan lives in Marblehead, Massachusetts. Siobhan runs Granger St. Studios, the publishing arm of her written ventures. https://www.grangerstreetstudios.com/

 

Hilda’s Story: New Bedford, Massachusetts is published by Granger St. Studios.

ISBN: 9781733039000

Published: 5/31/2019

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Posted in Blog
August 21, 2019

Life is a constant roller coaster of challenges and victories. Feeling sad or hopeless is something we all experience at some point in our lives For many, these feelings persist and may require medical intervention.

The Black Hole

 

Depression is one of the most common mental health disorders in the U.S., affecting men, women, and children from all walks of life. Depression can deeply impact every aspect of life. Symptoms can include difficulty concentrating, anger and irritability, loss of energy, and loss of interest in the things we once loved.

Depressive episodes are when these symptoms do not go away for long periods. Below are some quick facts about those affected:

  • 3 % of American Adults (18+) are affected
  • Depression is more prevalent in women than men
  • 9 million children (ages 3-17) have been diagnosed with depression
  • Adults with depressive disorders have a 64% higher chance of developing coronary artery issues

 

Types of Depression

Depression affects everyone differently. How each person responds to treatment is also different, so understanding the various types of depression can be an important piece in finding the most effective treatment. Below are some common types of depression along with a general understanding of each:

  • Major Depression– Recurrent depressive episodes that if left untreated, can last up to 6 months.
  • Atypical Depression– Those who have it experience a temporary mood elevation from positive events such as receiving good news, hanging out with friends, etc.
  • Dysthymia (Recurrent Mild Depression)Symptoms are not as strong as major depression but can last for long periods. Those with this type of depression feel moderately depressed more days than not.
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)– Feeling of sadness, stress, and being tense beginning in fall or winter when daylight hours are reduced. This usually lasts until spring, when there is more sunlight.

Clinical Studies and Depression

Up to 80% of those treated for depression show improvement in symptoms within 4-6 weeks of beginning psychotherapy, medication, attending support groups, or a combination of these. Sadly, 2 out of every 3 people with depression do not actively seek treatment or receive proper treatment. Consulting your physician is the only way to truly be diagnosed and treated properly.

A clinical study conducted by ActivMed in our Methuen location could also benefit individuals who battle with this disorder. If you or someone you know is suffering from depression or feel like pieces are missing from your current depression treatment, these studies may be a great opportunity. Qualified candidates who participate will receive study-related care at no cost and compensation for travel. To learn more about our depression studies, please click HERE.

 

References:

https://www.helpguide.org/articles/depression/depression-symptoms-and-warning-signs.htm
https://www.dbsalliance.org/education/depression/statistics/

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Alzheimer’s Cafe at the Children’s Museum of New Hampshire Come enjoy an afternoon with us!   The Alzheimer’s Cafe at the Children’s Museum of New Hampshire is a welcoming place where people living with dementia, along with their care partners and family members, come together for a casual social gathering each month. Spend an afternoon enjoying interesting conversation with new friends.   The Alzheimer’s Cafe happens on the 3rd Thursday of each month from 2-4pm at the Children’s Museum of New Hampshire. Refreshments are served.   No reservations necessary. Free of charge, but donations are welcome. For more information, please contact Paula Rais at 603-742-2002 or email paula@childrens-museum.org www.childrens-museum.org

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Mind & Memory Laughter Yoga Cafe with Julie Becker Twice Monthly on Thursdays * Nourishing snacks and infused waters provided 10:30-11:30am before Yoga session June 20 & 27 July 18 & 25 August 1 & 15 The Atrium at Drum Hill is creating an engaging environment through movement and laughter. For those affected by dementia, carrying on a conversation can be difficult, following sequences is a challenge and not all people move at the same speed. Through our mind and memory cafe, caregivers can interact with their loved ones in a space and way that isn’t forced. They can smile, laugh, move and just be with family. We invite you to join us as we help provide moments of laughter, hope, and engagement. Julie Becker is a nursing student at Fairfield University. She has been practicing laughter yoga for over 6 years and is a certified laughter yoga instructor Julie would describe laughter yoga as “a type of yoga based on the belief that voluntary yoga provides physiological and psychological benefits coupled with breathing techniques that work to relieve stress and uplift any mood.” Laughter is the best medicine!   For more information or to RSVP, please call 978.934.0000 or email sbecker@benchmarkquality.com  

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August 13, 2019

Defining Prurigo Nodularis

Prurigo Nodularis (PN) is a skin condition where hard, itchy lumps form on the skin. Prurigo means itch, and nodularis means nodules. The itching caused by PN can be so intense that people often scratch themselves to the point of bleeding.  The itching is made worse by sweating, heat, or irritation from clothes. If you have symptoms of PN, or have been diagnosed, read on for more info!

The Cause

The itching itself is what causes the nodules to form. When the skin is scratched repeatedly, it causes injury and the skin then protects itself by creating a thicker layer, which is where the nodules come from. This is called the itch-scratch cycle. Although the cause of PN is not always clear, certain conditions will increase the chances of someone developing PN. Some of those include:

  • Psychological conditions
  • Reduced liver or kidney function
  • Allergies
  • Skin diseases such as:

Diagnosis and Treatment

Excessive scratching also causes nerves to thicken in affected areas and these thicker nerves will then send stronger than normal itching sensations. A skin biopsy is usually performed to determine if PN is the cause of the itching, as a biopsy will show the thickened nerves. Other tests, such as blood, liver, and kidney tests, will also help to identify any underlying cause of the itch.

Treatment of PN is different for every patient and it may take several attempts to find a treatment plan that works for you. Common PN treatments are:

  • Corticosteroid Creams are applied to nodules and covered with airtight and waterproof bandages to reduce inflammation.
  • Corticosteroid Injections are injected directly into nodules to reduce inflammation.
  • Oral Corticosteroids are ingested to reduce inflammation.
  • Other Ointments with menthol or phenol cool and soothe itchy skin.
  • Capsaicin Cream uses the heat in your body to block nerve messages.
  • Oral Antihistamines are ingested antihistamines.
  • SSRIs alter serotonin signals in the skin.

Habit reversal therapy is often needed, in addition to medications, to help patients reduce the amount of scratching, which can be very habit-forming. Other treatments can include cryotherapy, photochemotherapy, and immunosuppressants if the common treatments are not effective.

Even with a healthy amount of available treatment options, most people never have a complete resolution of the nodules; therefore, clinical studies to test new treatments are needed to find different and better ways to treat or even cure PN.

ActivMed Practices & Research, Inc. is currently seeking patients interested in helping to evaluate new options that may potentially help treat certain PN symptoms. Qualified candidates who participate will receive study-related care at no cost.  Compensation is available for travel.  If you or someone you know is suffering from the chronic itch and nodules associated with PN, this study may be a great opportunity.  To learn more and to see how you or someone you love may qualify for a PN study, please click HERE.

 

References:

https://www.aocd.org/page/PrurigoNodularis

https://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/diseases/7480/prurigo-nodularis

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