Emotional Health

Study: More to Meal Delivery Than Food

John Moore/Getty Images Home visits like the one made by Meals on Wheels in September to Tamara Lycholaj, 89, of Sullivan County, N.Y., seem to help keep older people out of nursing homes, a new study shows. What’s a simpler idea than Meals on Wheels? Older, lower-income people who have trouble driving, cooking or shopping(…)

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Taking a Zen Approach to Caregiving

Nathaniel Brooks for The New York Times You try to help your elderly father. Irritated and defensive, he snaps at you instead of going along with your suggestion. And you think “this is so unfair” and feel a rising tide of anger. How to handle situations like this, which arise often and create so much(…)

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Older People Become What They Think, Study Shows

Fred R. Conrad/The New York Times Research shows that older people who have positive outlooks on aging eat healthier, exercise more and recover more quickly from illnesses. All of us have beliefs — many of them subconscious, dating back to childhood — about what it means to get older. Psychologists call these “age stereotypes.” And,(…)

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In the Middle: Helping Unhappy Couples

Mike Blake/Reuters Sometimes couples just stop getting along. What’s a caregiver to do? A post on Monday discussed the forces that can make an older couple’s good marriage suddenly go bad — an array of subtle, and often-misunderstood, mental, physical and emotional factors that can upset the equilibrium of even the happiest marriages. Now we(…)

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In the Middle: Why Elderly Couples Fight

David Rochkind for The New York Times George and Gracie (let’s call them that because using their real names would make them even unhappier than they already appear to be) are in their 80s and have been married for more than 65 years. Until recently they seemed to ride the waves that are inevitable in(…)

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The Emotional Aftermath of Hurricane Sandy

Adam Hunger/Reuters An elderly woman was helped into a boat to escape the flood waters of Hurricane Sandy in Little Ferry, N.J. Let’s talk about the emotional aftermath of the storm that left tens of thousands of older people on the East Coast without power, bunkered down in their homes, chilled to the bone and(…)

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How to Shoot a Photo to Remember

Sometimes the realization comes almost too late — you sense that your parents or other loved ones may soon be gone, and it dawns on you that you don’t have any recent photos to remember them by. Sure, you might have a few photos of them in their youth, before you even knew them. But(…)

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Hard Decisions in the I.C.U.

Getty Images Your relative has spent five days in a hospital intensive care unit, unable to breathe without a ventilator and incapable of making her own medical decisions. Because she appointed you her health care proxy, or simply because you’re her closest relative, the choices about treatments — trying them or stopping them — fall(…)

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Struggling With an Abusive Aging Parent

Some new residents come into the nursing home like lions, roaring at staff and fighting admission at every turn. Others come in like lambs, including an 84-year-old woman who arrived quietly after a complicated hip fracture ended her ability to live alone. Her presence on the unit raised little attention and no suspicion of a(…)

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More Older People Treated for Depression

Anna Hill’s mother-in-law had suffered from depression for years, it was clear in hindsight, and had denied it for years, too. Only 73, she’d lost interest in doing much of anything. In chronic pain after an earlier accident, she was taking high doses of methadone. Last November, she stunned her family by declining, at the(…)

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