Senior-sitting-in-Rose-garden-wearing-a-flower-printed-shirt-smilingThe earlier months in 2020 brought many obstacles for all communities all over. The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has brought newfound change to the way we each live our daily lives.

As it is more important for older adults to practice social distancing, it is crucial to acknowledge the stressors that may affect their overall well-being during this time and the psychological resilience it takes to overcome them. Older adults have faced many other difficulties in their lifetimes like major weather events, natural disasters, economic impacts, and even previous pandemics which some may say have prepared them for the adaptations that the current pandemic has forced. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention marks four pandemics in the last 100 years, excluding COVID-19.

With our safety responses to the current pandemic, how are older adults adjusting to new measures put in place to provide safety? Brenda Whitehead, an associate professor of psychology at the University of Michigan-Dearborn, published in The Gerontologist, conducted an online survey of adults over the age of 60 and found that the most commonly reported sources of joy and comfort during the pandemic is connecting with family and friends, engaging in hobbies, being with pets, spending time with spouses or partners, and relying on faith.

Despite the new measures imposed on our everyday lives, there are ways for older adults to stay emotionally and physically engaged. Consider activities where social distancing can be maintained like going on walks in the neighborhood, using technology to keep in touch with friends and family, or picking up a new hobby.

To learn more about resources available during the COVID-19 pandemic to help maintain your overall health and well-being, speak with a Community Resource Specialist: (408) 350-3200, option 1.

Lung Cancer Screening

Medicare Part B covers lung cancer screening using low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) if the individual meets all the following criteria:

  • Aged 55 to 77
  • No signs or symptoms of lung cancer
  • Current smoker or quit smoking within the past 15 years
  • Tobacco smoking history averaging one pack per day for 20 years (“20 pack-years”)
  • An order from a doctor or healthcare provider

Take advantage of these preventative services offered by Medicare by asking for them for yourself or your loved one. In this way, older adults can reduce their risk of developing substance abuse disorders or mitigate its effects to maintain healthier lifestyles.

References

  1. National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2020, July). Substance use in older adults drugfacts. Substance Use in Older Adults DrugFacts | National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) (nih.gov)
  2. gov. (n.d.). Preventive & screening services. preventive services (medicare.gov)

 

This project was supported by the Administration for Community Living (ACL), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $94,686 with 100 percent funding by ACL/HHS. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by ACL/HHS, or the U.S. Government.