Aging Well in 2022: 10 Tips from the Experts – Forbes Health – Forbes | Hot Mobile Press

As 2021 draws to a close, many of us are reflecting on how our minds and bodies have changed over the past year. Regardless of your stage in life, aging is something we all experience on a daily basis — but that doesn’t mean we’re powerless over the process.

If you’re ready to start 2022 on your best foot, here are 10 expert advice on aging from our Forbes Health Advisory Board members. With her words of wisdom in hand, you can make your year a happy, healthy, and vibrant one.

Commit to brain-healthy habits

“The new year is a great time to commit to brain-healthy habits,” says Amanda Smith, MD, professor of psychiatry and behavioral neuroscience at the University of South Florida’s Morsani College of Medicine and director of clinical research at USF Health Byrd Alzheimer’s Institutes in Tampa, Fla. “Eat colorful fruits and vegetables, lean proteins and less processed foods. Get a good night’s sleep and try to set aside at least 15 minutes a day for exercise and another 15 minutes for meditation or mindfulness practices. Try challenging your brain by learning something new like a language, an instrument, or a hobby. It’s never too late to take care of your brain, and every little bit can have a lasting impact on cognitive health!”

Take care of your hearing health

“Your sense of hearing plays a critical role in your cognitive and overall health,” says Abram Bailey, audiologist and consumer technology expert in hearing aid acoustics. “Over the years, numerous scientific studies have linked hearing loss to dementia, anxiety, balance disorders, increasing social isolation and low self-esteem. Hearing loss can also have a direct impact on earning potential and employability. Good hearing is critical to maintaining an active, social, and financially productive lifestyle. Do your best to limit your exposure to excessively loud noises, get your hearing checked if you haven’t already, and make sure you get the hearing aid you need if you’re not hearing at your best.”

Trading Limits for Bonuses

“My patients often ask me what limits they should set on screen time to protect their eyes,” says Jennifer Lyerly, an optometrist from Raleigh, North Carolina who specializes in contact lenses and myopia management. “The more successful approach is to think less about boundaries and more about what activities are good for your eyes, body and mental health. Being outside, being active – these are things that serve your overall well-being and also help to reduce daily eye problems such as dryness and eye fatigue. Instead of focusing on a negative association like setting boundaries, reward yourself with an outdoor walk or a workout break where you don’t have a screen in sight every day.”

A new take on fitness

“Aging isn’t the end of fitness — it’s part of an evolution,” says Rachel Tavel, a physical therapy physician and board-certified strength and conditioning specialist in New York City. “Their level of health and fitness is not constant. They are moving targets that require constant re-evaluation to suit you and take you to the next level. That doesn’t end with aging – it just changes.”

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Harness the power of telemedicine

“Modern medicine has made remarkable strides in extending lifespan, but we’ve failed to keep people healthy during those ‘bonus’ years,” says Joseph Kvedar, MD, an international medical thought leader. “Fortunately, digital health technologies can improve what I believe to be the three biggest predictors of longevity: having a sense of purpose, maintaining social connections, and being physically active. There are countless consumer-friendly smart technologies that can help us stay on the move, connected and productive. At the same time, in large part due to the unprecedented challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, our healthcare system has adopted telemedicine and virtual care technologies to move care away from the hospital and doctor’s office and into the home and everyday life of patients lives. Tools like virtual video visits, remote monitoring to collect health data, and e-consultation with specialists help effectively connect patients with their providers and keep people healthy at home. We are in the midst of a major transformation, moving from a purely in-person care model to a hybrid of virtual and in-person care. And we don’t look back!”

Maintain mental stimulation

“‘You can’t help but get older,’ comedian George Burns quipped, ‘but you don’t have to get old,'” shares Phillip Stieg, MD, a board-certified neurosurgeon with expertise in cerebrovascular disease, brain tumors and skulls with basic surgery . “I believe that’s the secret to aging well — maintaining the same activities, interests and relationships you enjoyed when you were younger, maintaining your sense of humor and staying cognitively stimulated. A rich, varied mix of learning, processing, and problem solving keeps your brain healthy and functioning better in all areas. Mental stimulation of all kinds preserves brain cells and can even create new cells and connections, so keep your brain active every day. It definitely worked for George Burns, who lived to be 100 – he kept telling jokes to the end.”

Don’t be afraid of assistive technology

“Hearing health is important and can engage you in conversations with friends and family,” says Lindsey Jorgensen, audiologist and associate professor at the University of South Dakota. “Have your hearing checked and, if necessary, consult an assistive technology hearing care professional.”

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Train your brain

“Just as your body needs exercise and exercise to stay healthy, so does your brain,” says Abigail Friend, a board-certified audiologist in Burien, Washington. “I’m often asked, ‘Do I need to wear my hearing aids because I live alone?’ I explain that over time, hearing loss can impair cognition in terms of reduced alertness and slower memory and thought-processing speeds. It can also change your behavior, which can lead to social withdrawal, isolation, and depression. Ears are tools that collect sounds to feed your brain for more activity. So I encourage people to wear their hearing aids as much as possible. Listen to TV, radio, an audio book or music. Any auditory input is beneficial for enhancing and maintaining cognition and comprehension.”

Take a balanced approach to health

“Besides avoiding overly negative behavior, there are positive ways to slow down the aging process and control your immune system: getting enough sleep, maintaining a healthy biome, exercising, and maintaining sexual health,” says Robert Lahita, director of the Institute of Autoimmune and Rheumatic Disease at St. Joseph’s Health in Paterson, New Jersey.

Invest in your body

“The process of aging can be a pleasant or unpleasant experience,” says Darryl Glover, optometrist, global speaker, key opinion leader, diversity advocate, consultant, podcast host and author. “The ability to age comfortably depends on how you invest in your body. Staying physically active, maintaining a balanced diet, and being mentally alert will promote comfortable, healthy aging.”

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Keep doing things that work for you

“This year I enrolled in Medicare and became a grandfather—I’m officially a senior!” says John Glaser, Executive-in-Residence at Harvard Medical School Executive Education. “How do I ensure that the next 65 years will be as healthy, rewarding, and happy as my first 65 years? By continuing to do the things that brought me here – taking care of my body, developing and nurturing important relationships, continuing to learn and being intellectually challenged, contributing to the world around me, and waking up every morning and preparing for the day ahead am happy. ”

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