This Week in Senior Living News

Aging News:

[caption id="attachment_27595" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image by raja4u on Stock.xchng"]Maintaining cognition through aging[/caption]

Ladies, we knew it! Mild memory impairment is more common in men, according to a post on WebMD. All joking aside, the condition is officially termed mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and is more than just the occasional "senior moment." Often, MCI is a precursor to the development of full-blown Alzheimer's disease, and a recent study showed the development of MCI was more common in men over the course of three years. The study also found MCI to be more common among participants who were less educated and those who were single.

Speaking of memory, want to try to keep your brain sharp? A number of publications have weighed in recently with tips for maintaining cognitive ability and giving your noggin a good workout. Read these tips, learn about current brain research and get inspired by tech-savvy and forward-thinking seniors by visiting The New York Times, The Columbian, Moorabbin Leader and

Senior Living News:

Joan London is at it again! This time in Joan's Journey: The Search for Senior Housing, Joan is writing a blog post directly to you, her loyal readers. She's been loving the many words of encouragement, friendly advice and suggestions. Read Joan's latest post.

LGBT Crosswalk currently has an ad in the running for the TED Ads Worth Spreading Award. Aging LGBT adults face a unique set of challenges, and the issue is garnering more and more attention in the media and even by the U.S. Government. President Obama made mention of the struggles this group faces during his State of the Union Address. Check out the press release on PRWeb for more facts and details about emerging organizations focused on increasing awareness and improving transitions.

Caregiver Stories and Advice:

Do you accompany an aging loved one to medical office visits? If you do, you could be improving the care your loved one receives, according to an article in Outcome Magazine.

Caregiving is often a 24-hours a day, seven days a week challenge. It's easy to become burnt out, and the problem is only compounded by the feelings of grief that follow. We feel guilty because we wish we had a few moments to ourselves, or we feel like we're not doing enough. Here are a few tips for avoiding caregiver burnout from EmpowHer.

Tech Roundup:

Is Social Security taking a step backwards in technology? U.S. News says the Social Security Administration will resume mailing paper statements to beneficiaries in February. But it's not what it seems: The Administration didn't move to an electronic system, they simply put a hold on mailing statements to save money temporarily. There are actually plans to develop an online system, according to SSA Commissioner Michael Astrue, but the system is being tested to ensure demand can be met and there are no firm implementation dates at this time.

Computer-aided exercise is a valuable tool for seniors, according to a post in The Atlantic. A study tested whether combining stationary bike exercise with video-led visual routines would help seniors maintain cognitive ability. Turns out that video games might not be as bad for our brains as we think. We also covered the study in a recent blog post.

Operations and On the Political Beat:

The National Investment Center for the Seniors Housing & Care Industry (NIC) reports that senior housing occupancy rates continued to show a slow recovery in the fourth quarter of 2011. Construction, however, remains stagnant. Occupancy rates are expected to continue at a slow growth rate, with projections indicating occupancy rates of 89% by Q4 2012. NuWire Investor summarizes these findings.

[caption id="attachment_27596" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Image by Yello-Dog on Stock.xchng"]Obama hangs out on Google+[/caption]

Health reform discussions are heating up as we ramp up to the upcoming presidential election. The Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute, an independent body tasked with determining the comparative effectiveness of health policies, programs and treatments, has published it inaugural agenda, outlining plans for research in the coming year. Dr. Joe Selby, the Institute's first chief executive officer, talks with The Washington Post about health reform and the group's role in ensuring positive outcomes. Additionally, the PCORI is soliciting feedback on its National Priorities Research and Research Agenda. The public comment period ends mid-March. Get the details on how to add your comments from SacBee.

The Alzheimer's Challenge 2012, a collective effort by a number of groups and companies, was introduced at the Care Innovations Summit in Washington, D.C. The Challenge aims to improve diagnostics through the development of cost-effective, consistent tools and techniques that can assess memory, mood, thinking and activity level over time. Get more details on the program and how it may improve Alzheimer's diagnosis and treatments at Enhanced Online News.

Things that make you say, "Huh?" and our favorite unexpected news of the week:

I know, we preach about social media a lot. We love social media. And apparently, so does President Obama. When he first took office, he wouldn't give up his Blackberry, as most presidents are asked to do to maintain safety and security. Now, even President Obama is hanging out on Google+. That's right, hang out with the President and maybe even have your question answered (you must submit it by Jan. 28th - today!). And get this: Questions are to be submitted via The White House's very own YouTube channel.