Dr. Mauk’s Boomer Blog

/Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog

Each week, Dr. Mauk shares thoughts relevant to Baby Boomers that are aimed to educate and amuse.

Guest Blog: What Colorado Residents Need to Know About Medicare in Their State

Despite impacting millions of people across the country, not many Americans are familiar with how the Medicare system functions.

Medicare even varies within each of the fifty states, making it more difficult to completely understand. In order to ensure that each citizen is getting their maximum benefits from this program, it is important that people become educated on the topic.
The more that people know about Medicare, the more they benefit. Here are some things that residents need to know about Medicare in Colorado.

 

Colorado Medicare Options

Medicare benefits are divided into different categories in Colorado. Residents can apply for Part A, B, D and supplement plans.
Medicare Part A covers care taking place in a hospital, and Part B focuses primarily on physician care. Colorado even has some Advantage Plans that are offered by private insurance companies.

Part D provides prescription medicine coverage for those already enrolled in Parts A and B. Part D is provided through some private insurance companies previously approved by Medicare.

Applying for Medicare

The process of applying for Medicare is the same in Colorado as all other states. To be eligible, an individual must be either a citizen of the United States or have held permanent residency for at least five years.

All individuals over the age of 65 are allowed to apply for Medicare coverage. Medicare in Colorado also covers those with disabilities who are under age 65.

Medicare Deductibles

Each Medicare Plan does have deductible costs to consider. Plan A has a deductible of $1,340 for each of the benefit periods. Medicare Plan B has a lower deductible of $183.

After paying the deductible, Plan B recipients are responsible for covering 20% of any amount approved by Medicare. Colorado charges a $405 yearly deductible for the Plan D Prescription Plan.

Medicare Supplement Plans (Medigap)

The Original Medicare plan still leaves a lot to be covered by an individual. Deductibles can quickly add up even with all the benefits provided by Medicare. This is why Colorado offers some Medicare Supplement Plans like Medigap.

Medigap works similar to Medicare, but it works to cover all of the costs that Medicare doesn’t. Out of pocket expenses such as coinsurance, copayments and deductibles are all covered by a Medigap plan.

These plans are offered through private insurance companies, similar to some Medicare Supplement Plans.

By |2018-09-13T14:32:39+00:00September 13th, 2018|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on Guest Blog: What Colorado Residents Need to Know About Medicare in Their State

What Your Back Pain is Trying to Tell You

Experiencing back, shoulder or neck pain? Your body may be speaking to you and you just don’t know it. Getting older doesn’t have to mean accepting regular aches and pains. Depending on your day to day activity, environment, and mobility, your back pain can be sending loud and clear messages like:

You’re not active enough: This might seem counter intuitive, especially to older adults who are avoiding activity so they don’t “further injure” themselves or cause more pain. The reality is, low-impact exercise and activity helps to alleviate pain and soreness by stretching out your muscles and spine, boosting blood circulation, and reducing inflammation in your muscles, joints, and tendons. Along with keeping off excess weight.

You’re not sleeping well: A bad night’s sleep can undo any number of steps you took towards relieving back pain during the day. Older mattresses that don’t support proper spine alignment while you sleep can result in the pull and strain of your muscles and tendons and lead to bad posture during the day. Optimize on the natural curve of your spine while you sleep by simply using a pillow – on your side in a fetal position, try sleeping with a pillow between your knees. If you sleep on your back, place a pillow underneath your knees.

You’re stressed: Feelings of stress, anxiety or depression can physically translate into tense muscles that lead to back pain and thoughtless behaviors like eating poorly or not exercising, which exacerbate existing conditions. Aging seniors with complex medical conditions or cognitive decline are more likely to experience stress and anxiety as well as feelings of frustration and anger.

You’re not practicing self-care: Incorporating daily care routines into your life can make a huge difference in both your experience of back pain as well as your personal outlook on life. Self-care can be as simple as eating a healthy diet, stretching and exercising to care for your body, meditating, decluttering your environment, and practicing self-soothing techniques like rubbing lotion on your hands and feet before bed. Relieving back pain starts with you and your own self-awareness of what you need and deserve to live your best life.

You’re sitting down too much: Countless aging seniors will spend hours each day sitting down – at meals, watching tv, reading, and at the computer. Sustained inactivity and sitting in one spot for an extended period of time puts significant pressure on the spine and promotes bad posture, all of which lead to back pain and discomfort. Experts recommend not going more than 30 or 45 minutes sitting in one place without getting up to stretch, walk around, and change positions.

Get this!

According to a recent report published by the American College of Physicians*, people who experience moderate to acute back pain are actually more likely to experience relief when they try exercise, yoga, acupuncture or massage instead of taking pain killers. The comprehensive study revealed that most types of back pain go away over time whether they are treated or not and that drugs should be a last resort for alleviating pain, after mindfulness-based practices, exercise, spinal manipulation, even heat wraps.

http://annals.org/aim/article/2603228/noninvasive-treatments-acute-subacute-chronic-low-back-pain-clinical-practice

Joe Fleming

Co-Founder, Vive Health

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By |2018-09-12T09:05:22+00:00September 12th, 2018|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on What Your Back Pain is Trying to Tell You

What Is Involved in a Radiographer’s Career

Are you thinking about a career in radiography? If yes, then this article will prove to be very meaningful to you. Let me just tell you, a career in radiography is a great choice for you if you like helping other people and paying close attention to details. Moreover, if you like performing an important role in a medical emergency, then there’s nothing better than becoming a radiologic technologist.

This article will brief you about what a typical career of a radiographer comprises. For more important details regarding how to become a radiographer, you can log on to insideradiology.com.au.

1- What Is a Radiographer Trained to Do?
One of the benefits that radiographers get from their profession is that they are trained to operate some of the most cutting-edge medical equipment. As a radiographer, you get the chance of being right in the middle of a medical case, working closely with patients and doctors. If you’re pursuing a career in radiography, then you would be trained to perform several diagnostic procedures, like X-rays, fluoroscopy, MRI, CT, and angiography.

2- How Is Radiographer’s Career Important?
A doctor cannot perform an invasive procedure even if it’s an emergency case without having the results of diagnostic tests performed by a radiographer. Radiographers are also responsible for setting radiation equipment accurately and ensuring that all test results are recorded correctly.

3- What Makes a Radiographer’s Career Interesting?
If you’re thinking of becoming a radiographer, then you won’t spend your day doing the same work. You’ll be performing various tests and using different kinds of modern technical devices. Following is what makes a radiographer’s career so interesting:
• Dealing with patients and briefing them about the procedure

• Guiding patients to form correct positions for the tests.
• Operating all the test equipment
• Recording the test results
• Working with doctors and interpreting the results

4- The Directions in Which a Radiographer’s Career Can Go
The best thing about becoming a radiographer is that you don’t have to stick to medical insinuations and hospitals throughout your career. Although most radiographers prefer to work in hospitals, you can steer your career in other directions as well. You can work with scientists and perform radiography on fossil bones to examine them. You can work with engineers to diagnose flaws in mechanical designs. You also have the option to work in mobile imaging services, military, breast imaging centre, and veterinary care practice.

5- The Demand for Radiographers
Radiographers in Australia enjoy a sound career and handsome salary. Moreover, radiography is a steadily growing job market that is expected to flourish further during the years to come. A general radiographer in Australia can easily make $65,000 to $75,000 annually and a CT radiographer can earn around $70,000 to $90,000 annually. The pay scale for MRI radiographers is even better.

So, what have you decided? Does a career in radiography sound interesting to you? Whether you work closely with patients and doctors or help a scientist examine fossils and mummies, a career in radiography sure gives you the feeling that you’re making the world a better place.

By |2018-09-10T08:49:36+00:00September 10th, 2018|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on What Is Involved in a Radiographer’s Career

Guest Blog: Auto Safety Tech Innovations That Will Excite Boomer Drivers

 

As automotive technology has improved, increasingly more consumers are seeking out that technology during the car shopping process. Every year, the rate at which technology changes personal transportation accelerates. As a matter of fact, NY speeding violations lawyer http://www.zevgoldsteinlaw.com/ quotes General Motors CEO Mary Barra; “We’re going to see more change in the next five to ten years than we’ve seen in the last 50.”

 

For baby boomers, who are hoping to stay on the road for as long as possible, this is more important than ever. The question many consumers find themselves asking, however, is what technologies will make their way into the mainstream market and which ones will remain in the realm of science fiction. In the very near future, there are 25 advanced car technologies that we expect to see making their way into showrooms.

  1. Intelligent Brake Lights are being developed that indicate whether a driver is stopping quickly or simply decreasing acceleration.
  2. Smart Windshields will use augmented reality to help display key information about what’s happening on the road.
  3. Night Vision Enhancements make it easier for seniors and others with night vision troubles to see when they’re out on the road at night, removing obstacles that might create an earlier curfew for seniors.
  4. Automated Parking Systems make parking easy. Simply put the car into parking mode and it will slide itself into the parking space—perfect for those who have started to see their motor skills deteriorating.
  5. Lane Departure Warning Systems don’t just help distracted drivers who might have wandered out of their designated lane. They’re also designed to help elderly drivers who may struggle to keep their car inside the lane when they’re driving.
  6. Crash Notification and Avoidance Technologies recognize the conditions that can lead to an accident, from someone running into the road to a car slamming on its brakes ahead. Some of them are designed to notify drivers so that they can react. Others may even slam on the brakes or have another reaction to help avoid the collision.
  7. Blind Spot Detection and Back-Over Prevention Systems note any time there’s something behind the car or in a blind spot, making it easier to avoid accidents.
  8. Fatigue Warning Systems analyze driver behavior and notify them when they are becoming fatigued, letting drivers know when it’s time to pull over for a while.
  9. Forward Collision Warning with Auto Brake notices when accidents are going to happen and puts on the brakes to avoid them.
  10. Self-Driving Cars were the technology of the future just a few short years ago. Now, however, they’re becoming a very real possibility, removing the responsibility of driving the car from the senior’s shoulders.
  11. Driver Override Systems recognize when drivers are accelerating faster than the driver intended, such as when the gas pedal is slammed instead of the brake. The unsafe response is then overridden.
  12. Biometric Vehicle Access offers an even greater level of safety and protection, pulling together the safety systems needed by an individual driver based on biometric scans.
  13. Comprehensive Vehicle Tracking lets you know where your car is at any moment. It’s a fantastic resource for children who might worry about their elderly parents wandering off.
  14. Active Window Displays bring GPS and other apps straight to the windshield, removing the need to look away in order to effectively use those apps.
  15. Remote Vehicle Shutdown allows a car to be shut down from a distance—especially effective in conjunction with the GPS tracking that will let adult children know if their parents are out of the geographic area where they should be traveling. This feature is one of 10 advanced car technologies predicted by Forbes contributor Karl Brauer by 2020.
  16. Active Health Monitoring is something nearly everyone is now familiar with. Active health monitoring in a vehicle allows drivers to know when their health isn’t adequate to safe driving.
  17. Reconfigurable Body Panels change the shape of the car, making it possible to use a single vehicle for many purposes.
  18. Tablet Transforming Steering Wheels use gesture control, similar to what’s used on a tablet screen, to make cars easier to maneuver—even for those with joint problems.
  19. High-Tech Car Seats with Stress Gauges help drivers stay calm behind the wheel, shifting responses to help create a safer driving experience.
  20. Dashboard Safety Integration provides safety information on the dashboard, where it’s easy to view while driving.
  21. Augmented Reality provides warning messages and other key information on the windshield, making it easier to see obstacles and other concerns.
  22. Hydrogen-Powered Fuel Cell Cars combine hydrogen and oxygen to produce the power for fuel cells that run the car—truly the car of the future.
  23. Rotating Motorized Lounge Chairs provide an increased level of comfort for drivers who might otherwise have trouble in the car.
  24. Eye-Tracking Holographic Dashboard technology uses gestures and eye movements to allow apps to be accessed without needing to touch the screen.
  25. Autopilot systems, like self-driving car technology, provide drivers with the safe travel they need without reducing their independence.

These new technologies have helped make traveling by car safer than it ever has been before. This is particularly true for older drivers who may need additional assistance behind the wheel. This offers a significant improvement in quality of life for aging baby boomers who may no longer feel safe behind the wheel. New technology, however, prepares the way for them to drive longer.

 

 

 

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By |2018-09-07T19:43:14+00:00September 7th, 2018|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on Guest Blog: Auto Safety Tech Innovations That Will Excite Boomer Drivers

Guest Blog: Physical and Mental Health Aspects of Social Care For Elderly

There are many social forms of care for seniors that provide them with assistance and companionship on a daily basis. This type of care is incredibly useful for seniors who struggle with chronic physical or mental health problems, or just seniors who are struggling to transition into retirement. There are also many memory care facilities available that provide similar services, but also offer additional services for seniors struggling with dementia or other memory issues. Before transitioning into this type of senior care, here are some of the physical and mental results of social care for seniors that you should be aware of.

Improved Moods

One of the biggest benefits of a social care structure for seniors is that it helps them keep their moods and emotions stable. Many people transitioning into senior living struggle with feeling lonely, which can in turn lead to depression and anxiety. However, having caregivers and other seniors around as social support can do wonders for improving seniors’ moods and helping them feel emotionally supported. Transitioning into retirement can be overwhelming, but having a good social support system around can mitigate these negative feelings. Social interaction is naturally stimulating and releases calming chemicals in the brain that reduce stress.

Physical Pain Management

It’s normal for seniors to experience some type of chronic pain as they get older, particularly for people who have struggled with injuries earlier in life. It can be very difficult for seniors to manage pain on their own as they get further into their later years. Having caregivers available to help with activities that cause residents pain is one of the biggest benefits of assisted living care for seniors. In many cases, caregivers can also help seniors with medication administration and gentle exercises that can prevent chronic pain from worsening.

Memory Care

Unfortunately, many seniors struggle with dementia in old age, and this is a very difficult condition to deal with by yourself. A social assisted living facility that offers memory care can make life easier to navigate for seniors who struggle with these conditions. Memory care manages the situations seniors experience on a daily basis to help them access the memory they do have, while making tasks easier to do and preventing accidents and night wandering. If you are wondering where to find memory care facilities near you, consult your local doctor, or check one of the many online guides available that list local senior care facilities.

Daily Routine and Structure

Many seniors in retirement struggle with maintaining a daily routine, which can lead to both physical and mental health problems. One of the best things about assisted living is that it helps seniors maintain an enjoyable routine from day to day. Having this kind of structure keeps seniors active and provides mental stimulation as well. While seniors still have the flexibility to enjoy their favorite hobbies and activities, as well as spending time with friends and family, living in an assisted care facility ensures they will have something to do every day.

There are many great benefits of a social care structure for elderly patients. As frustrating as it can be for seniors to lose their independence, having daily care ensures that they are living the healthiest, most comfortable life possible. It also provides their loved ones with the peace of mind they need, so they won’t have to worry about the health and safety of their relatives. There are many different types of social care for seniors, so you will be sure to find an option that works for your needs.

By |2018-09-03T11:11:53+00:00September 3rd, 2018|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on Guest Blog: Physical and Mental Health Aspects of Social Care For Elderly