How this 79-yr-old Guy is Coping with Alzheimer’s. Very Inspiring

Health Secrets

In 2014 there were 815,827 people in the U.K. with Alzheimer’s. Roughly 95%, or 773,502 were 65 years old and over.

Ted McDermott, 79 years old, is one of them.

Alzheimer’s is a progressive deterioration of the brain that can occur in middle or old age.

In 2013, Ted was diagnosed with dementia and began to deteriorate He started having difficulties in recognizing loved ones and sometimes showed angry outburst.

Attending to Alzheimer’s victims is often a caregiver’s nightmare. They have lucid moments, when they act normally, and lurid moments, when they are totally lost to reality. Each is triggered differently from patient to patient.

Ted was an entertainer all his life, performing in pubs and clubs across England. Perhaps by coincidence, his lucidity is triggered by music, which his son, Simon, “Mac,” McDermott, 40, has exploited.

Wanting his Dad happy, Mac often takes his Ted on a ride singing some of his favorite songs. Here’s one of them.

Mac is sharing this video to raise funds for the Alzheimer’s Society. Lucky for him, it has gone viral.


What causes Alzheimer’s?

Its cause is not yet fully understood but scientists believe a combination of genetic, lifestyle and environmental factors which, over time, damage and kill brains cells.

As more brain cells die, the brain shrinks. A brain affected by Alzheimer’s has a lot fewer cells and connections compared to a healthy brain.


How to know if Alzheimer’s is gaining up on you:

There are an estimated 5.2 million Americans, aged 65 and over, who are afflicted with Alzheimer’s. To avoid becoming a part in this deadly statistics, you must know these early warning signs so you can immediately seek medical attention.


1.  Memory loss:
Things forgotten due to age-related memory loss is often remembered. Not with Alzheimer’s.

Forgetting recently learned information, important dates and events, asking the same information over and over, are indicators of the onset of Alzheimer’s.


2.  Difficulty in planning or solving problems:
Committing errors while doing tasks you never had problems before can happen to anyone with advanced years.

But to have difficulties in developing or following a plan, difficulty in concentrating, work with numbers, keeping track of monthly bills, or following a familiar recipe is an indication of early brain deterioration.


3.  Difficulty in doing familiar tasks at home, or at work:
Sometimes I have to call my son to re-teach me how to use some of the apps in the smartphone I inherited from him. But it’s because I seldom use them.

With Alzheimer’s, not only will you forget how to use it, you will have problems completing its execution. You may experience trouble in driving to a familiar place, managing a home or work budget, or rules of your favorite game.


4.  Confusion with time and place:
As a retiree and no longer keeping track of paydays or weekends, I sometimes forget the day or date. But I can easily get back on track by looking at the calendar or my timepiece.

People with Alzheimer’s often forget where they are or how they got there. They lose track of the time, i.e. days of the week, or months in the year. They even lose track of seasons, or the passage of time.


5.  Trouble with Vision and Distance:
Eye problems among seniors are normally caused by age-related eye deterioration or cataracts.

People with Alzheimer’s may have difficulty in reading, judging distance, color or contrast, which could cause driving risks.


6.  Speaking or writing problems:
Even the most mentality acute senior would often grope for the right words in the middle of a conversation.

But if you stop in the middle of a conversation and have no idea how to go on, repeat yourself, struggle with words or, worse, call things by the wrong name, then you may be having the early signs of Alzheimer’s.


7.  Misplacing things or inability to retrace steps:
If only misplacing things is a sign of Alzheimer’s then I must be having the disease. But I can retrace the events or my steps to joggle my memory to where I left them in most occasions.

Alzheimer’s victims cannot do that. They cannot retrace the events or their steps to try to figure out where they left them. Because of this, they may accuse others of stealing them.


8.  Changes in decision-making or judgment:
Occasionally making sound judgment or good decision is always difficult even with healthy people.

But with Alzheimer’s it becomes the norm. They often make poor judgment in money matters. They pay less attention to good grooming, or personal hygiene.


9.  Becoming a recluse:
People, young or old, normally have the urge to withdraw from other people, to get away from everything to find themselves, or just to recharge batteries.

But if, for no apparent reason, you suddenly don’t like to get on with your favorite hobby, social activities, sports, or avoid your best buddies, dementia may slowly be starting to creep in on you.


10.  Mood and personality changes:
We all have our own mood swings but personality, what you are and how you carry yourself, seldom change.

Dementia is often preceded by confusion, suspicion of others, depression, fear, or anxiety. You may easily be upset at home or at work, with friends or places where they are not so comfortable.

If you love yourself and your family, if you feel any of the above, immediately seek medical attention so you can avail of various treatments for early stage Alzheimer’s.

Attending to an Alzheimer’s patient is never easy, even for the most seasoned and patient caregivers. Don’t be one.

I would appreciate some comments. Thank you!



What do Seniors Regret Most in Life

Health Secrets

Me, worry? No. It ain't solving nothing and spoils the fun of living

Me, worry? No. It ain’t solving nothing and spoils the fun of living

What is your biggest regret in life?

One thousand two hundred old Americans were asked that question and their answer surprised everyone. Instead of expressing regret over a failed marriage, a business deal gone sour, or substance abuse, or not going good enough in one’s career, they said,

“I wish I hadn’t spent too much of my life worrying.”

Then they gave this advice to emphasize their point:

Worry is an enormous waste of your precious and limited lifetime…that worry is an unnecessary barrier to your joy and contentment.

John Alonzo, 83 years old, a construction worker who battled a lifetime of financial insecurity, and one of the respondents, said it bluntly:

Don’t believe that worrying solve or help anything. It won’t. So stop it.

John is right. Worry never solves anything and most of them are baseless.

According to studies, 85% of the things we worry about will never happen. Of the 15% that happens, 75% can be solved with ease. This means that 97% of the things you worry about are caused by your mind scaring you witless with exaggeration and misconceptions.

The irony is that “worry” is an intrinsic part of our being human. It was built into us as a means for survival. Without it we could never evolve into what we are today.

But too much of it, chronic worry, is wasteful and unhealthy. It can make you sick.

Nasty ways worry can affect your health:
o Increases your heartbeat;
o Induces rapid breathing;
o Makes you feel tired;
o Inability to concentrate;
o Loss of appetite;
o Indigestion;
o Sweating;
o Trembling and twitching due to nervous energy;

On the more serious side, worry can cause:
o Nausea
o Suppression of the immune system;
o Premature coronary artery disease
o Heart attack
o Depression and suicidal thoughts

Except for a few, I have experienced all these because I used to worry a lot. In more serious cases, I even thought of suicide. Had it not been for unexpected and timely interventions, I would not have been around to write this.

Age has mellowed me down e down a little bit. Being old has its rewards. I still have worries (they never go away) but they are a lot less now than a few years ago.

And I can better deal with them now by reciting my mantra I picked from the Internet. It goes this way:

“Sometimes the best thing you can do is not think, not worry, not imagine, and not obsess. Just breathe deeply and have faith that everything will work for the best.”

I say this at the start of the day, when I go to sleep at night, and anytime during the day when I feel worry is creeping up on me.

It works. It takes my mind off my worry and gives me hope that things will turn out for the best, which always do.

You should try it, too, if you are struggling with worries. But having a mantra is not doing you any good if you don’t understand what worries you and the mechanism to address it. It would be like standing on a busy intersection unable to decide what to do next.


What is worry?

It is “to feel or show fear and concern because you think that something bad has happened or could happen.”

The keyword is “think.” Psychology, however, teaches that thoughts, emotions and perceptions are often tricks of a hyperactive brain. To avoid falling into a trap, do the following:

1.  Live for the day, not tomorrow or thereafter:
If you are worried about what tomorrow will bring, focus on the moment. Live your life to the fullest today.

St. Mathew said:
o Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? – Matt: 6:27;
o Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own – Matt: 6:34.


2.  Prepare, rather than worry:
Rather than kill yourself with worry, understand what it is you are worried about and its consequences, should it happen.

Benjamin Desraeli said, “I am prepared for the worst, but hope for the best.”

Come up with different contingencies for every possible outcomes of what you are worried about. Be sure you cover all the bases so that you are well prepared to handle it should it happen.

When it is done, keep your mind off it. Go out, talk a walk, watch a movie or treat yourself to a large ice cream.


3.  Get into the offensive:
I am not good in the waiting game. I find it so agonizing to just sit there and wait for the Heavens to fall down on me.

A few years ago, an associate told me that our HR Manager didn’t like me. Anybody who is working for a promotion knows how bad it is to get the ire of the Human Resource Manager.

The entire night I tried to play around the possible reasons why I got into such a misfortune.

When I reported to work the following day, the first thing I did was go his office and asked him, pointblank, why I bug him.

That put him on the defensive. He evaded my question with a lot of statements which were all baloney.

My move certainly didn’t make him like me any better, but it made him realize that I know of his peeve against me and would be very careful not to offset my career aspirations unless with very credible and unassailable reason.

By the way, I got the promotion.

So if you are worried about something or someone, get into the offensive and find out why. I bet you, you will come out with a large smile on your face at your audacity, and of knowing that your worry has no bases whatsoever.

James Huang, 87, and one of the respondents of the survey, said:

“Why? I asked myself. What possible difference did it make that I kept my mind on every little thing that might go wrong. When I realized that it made no difference at all, I experienced a freedom that is hard to describe. My life lesson is this: Turn yourself from frittering away the day worrying about what comes next and let everything else that you love and enjoy and move on.”

To this day I could never recall any of my thousand worries happening. If some did the, consequences were not that great to make me lose some sleep.

You should treat your worries the same way.

Let me know of your thoughts on this. Thank you.


My Bus Ride of Discovery last Sunday

My Bus - a great ride last Sunday

My Bus – a great ride last Sunday

About two weeks ago I posted an article about hating Sundays, which made me sorry right after. It made me feel guilty.

Because no matter how much I gripe, complain or obsess about Sundays, it will never go away unless the day is stricken off the calendar. This, of course, will generate an international upheaval because everybody loves Sundays, except I (unfortunately).

Since I can’t beat it, I thought of doing something different, and something crazy that can take my mind off my discomfort; turn my displeasure into an experience worth remembering.

So last Sunday I took a city bus ride.

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7 Gems of Wisdom from a Sidewalk Vendor

I can still do it - 73-yr-old sidewalk vendor

I can still do it – 73-yr-old sidewalk vendor

I was having bouts of depression last week and told my daughter about it more as a way of letting go than for an advice. Instinctively she said, “You have no reason to be. A lot of people are in worse situation than you.”

Her off-the-cuff remark immediately reminded me of the sidewalk vendor I chatted with a couple of weeks ago.

This is her story…

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Norma: A Story of Bravery

I was totally devastated when my wife died. I was so grief-stricken that my two children took turns in sleeping with me at night to make sure nothing will happen to me during my sleep.

Some nights my son took me places to get my mind off my painful loss. We had beer, listened to music, and talk of nothing in particular except to slowly wean my thoughts away from my sadness.

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Of Knowing God, Mindfulness Breathing and Meditation

In a TV series, To Know God, Morgan Freeman set out on a quest to know what people think of god.

He crisscrossed the world to have a better and more comprehensive understanding of god.

He talked to ordinary people, archaeologists, religious historians and clerics of the major religions in the world, i.e., Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, and Buddhism, to know their perspectives of god.

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