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News

Peabody woman organizes sewing events for girls in need

As a full-time graduate student, a paraprofessional for the Little Tanners preschool, and a library trustee for the City of Peabody, Jean Ahearn understands how hard it can be to find free time. But she is hoping to inspire those who sew to offer a little of their time to help girls in need.

On Saturday, October 22, Ahearn will be holding sewing events from 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m., and 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the Creativity Lab at the main branch of the Peabody Institute Library (82 Main St.) to sew washable, therefore reusable, feminine hygiene products for girls living in poverty in this country and around the world.

Ahearn read an article about girls living in poverty losing up to 45 days of school a year due to lack of access to feminine hygiene products and an organization called Days for Girls that supplies patterns for sewing the needed products. Ahearn started Sewing to Empower Women (SEW) to help. If you would like to join Ahearn, you can sign up for one or both free sewing events online at peabodylibrary.org (click on Events, then Creativity Lab).

 

Free flu shots available for all residents

The Peabody Health Department, under the leadership of Public Health Nurse Chassea Robinson, has implemented a multifaceted strategy to vaccinate as many residents as possible against the flu. The plan involves operating several free flu shot clinics in the Wiggins Auditorium on the second floor of City Hall. Scheduled dates are October 27 (3-6 p.m.) and November 16 (1-3 p.m.). Residents should bring their insurance cards and wear a short-sleeved shirt.

Sharon Cameron, Director of Health and Human Services for the City of Peabody, said, “Chassea and her team of public health nurses offer free vaccinations to students in school during the school day, as well as to staff and parents at school orientation nights.” She went on to say that Robinson visits every senior housing development in Peabody, several places of worship and community venues, such as Haven from Hunger. Robinson hopes to offer flu shots at a few of the polling locations on Election Day, November 8.

Cameron said that last year the initiative provided flu shots to more than 2,000 Peabody residents. They are expecting similar results this year.

“Everyone six months and older should get the flu shot every year,” Robinson said. “The flu shot remains the first and best way to protect oneself and one’s family from the flu.”

Robinson said that although it’s impossible to predict what this year’s flu season will be like, in most years cases are reported as early as October and as late as May. Robinson said that flu effectiveness studies vary, but the Center for Disease Control and Protection (CDC) estimates that getting the vaccine can reduce one’s risk of contracting the flu by 50 to 60 percent among the overall population.

For more information, contact the Peabody Department of Health at 978-538-5931.

 

DEA and Partners Hold Prescription Drug Take Back Day Saturday

Thousands of communities participate in this weekend’s event

WASHINGTON, DC - DEA reprises this weekend one of its most popular community programs: National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. On Saturday October 22 between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. the public can dispose of their unused, unwanted prescription medications at one of 4,700 collection sites nationwide, operated by 3,800 local law enforcement agencies and other community partners. The service is free of charge, no questions asked.

America is presently experiencing an epidemic of addiction, overdose and death due to abuse of prescription drugs, particularly opioid painkillers. 6.4 million Americans age 12 and over—2.4 percent of the population—abuse prescription drugs, according to the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health released last month, more than abuse cocaine, heroin, hallucinogens, and methamphetamine combined. Drug overdoses are now the leading cause of injury-related death in the United States, eclipsing deaths from motor vehicle crashes or firearms. The majority of prescription drug abusers report that they obtain their drugs from friends and family, including from the home medicine cabinet.

Last April, during its 11th Take Back Day, the DEA and over 4,200 of its national, tribal, and community law enforcement partners collected 893,498 pounds (about 447 tons) of unwanted prescription drugs at almost 5,400 collection sites. Since the program began six years ago, about 6.4 million pounds (about 3,200 tons) of drugs have been collected. That’s more than a quarter pound of pills for each of the 25 million children aged 12 to 17 in America, pills that won’t result in abuse or overdose.

The public can find a nearby collection site by visiting www.dea.gov, clicking on the “Got Drugs?” icon, and following the links to a database where they enter their zip code. Or they can call 800-882-9529. Only pills and other solids, like patches, can be brought to the collection sites—liquids and needles or other sharps will not be accepted.

   

MarketStreet Lynnfield to host first Annual Marketstreet Monster Mash

MarketStreet Lynnfield celebrates Halloween weekend with its first annual MarketStreet Monster Mash, a costume dance party for the whole family, taking place on The Green on Wednesday, October 26, 2016 from 4:30pm to 6:30pm.  MarketStreet Lynnfield’s resident DJ Rick DeSanctis will get the party started with spooktacular songs and fun giveaways for kids and adults. MarketStreet Monster Mash is free and open to the public. The Monster Mash is in lieu of trick-or-treating at MarketStreet. Further details are below and online at www.marketstreetlynnfield.com.

Highlights of the first annual MarketStreet Monster Mash include:

Halloween Costume Dance Party for the whole family

Giveaways for kids and adults

Complimentary Halloween costume photos

About MarketStreet Lynnfield:

MarketStreet Lynnfield is the North Shore’s premium open-air shopping destination boasting over 80 shops and restaurants, 29 of which are locally owned. Since its 2013 opening, it has become essential to the North Shore community, both for its diverse shopping, dining and entertainment options and for its dedication to family friendly events, seasonal festivities, and charitable fundraisers. Guests can find such leading brands as Whole Foods Market, Kings Bowl, Tommy Bahama, Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse, lululemon Athletica, California Pizza Kitchen, Nike Running, FatFace UK, Hanna Andersson, Yard House, Legal C Bar, Sweetgreen, Tumi, Pink Parkway, Wahlburgers, The Paper Source and Vineyard Vines. MarketStreet Lynnfield is developed and leased in a partnership between leading Massachusetts commercial developers National Development and WS Development. For more information and the most current updates, please visit www.marketstreetlynnfield.com and follow along on social media: Facebook: MarketStreetLynnfield; Instagram: Twitter: @Shop_MarketSt, #marketstreetlynnfield. MarketStreet Lynnfield is located at 600 Market Street Lynnfield, MA.

 

Forgetfulness: What’s Normal, What’s Not?

Dear Savvy Senior,

At age 76, my husband has become forgetful lately and is worried he may have Alzheimer’s. What resources can you recommend to help us get a grip on this?

Concerned Wife


Dear Concerned,

Many seniors worry about memory lapses as they get older fearing it may be the first signs of Alzheimer’s disease or some other type of dementia. To get some insight on the seriousness of your husband’s problem, here are some resources you can turn to for help.

Warning Signs

As we grow older, some memory difficulties – such as forgetting names or misplacing items from time to time – are associated with normal aging. But the symptoms of dementia are much more than simple memory lapses.

While symptoms can vary greatly, people with dementia may have problems with short-term memory, keeping track of a purse or wallet, paying bills, planning and preparing meals, remembering appointments or traveling out of the neighborhood.

To help you and your husband recognize the difference between typical age-related memory loss and a more serious problem, the Alzheimer’s Association provides a list of 10 warning signs that you can assess at 10signs.org.

They also provide information including the signs and symptoms on the other conditions that can cause dementia like vascular dementia, Lewy body dementia, frontotemporal dementia, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, chronic traumatic encephalopathy and others – see ALZ.org/dementia.

Memory Screening

Another good place to help you get a handle on your husband’s memory problems is through the National Memory Screening Program, which offers free memory screenings throughout National Memory Screening Month in November.

Sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, this free service provides a confidential, face-to-face memory screening that takes about 10 minutes to complete and consists of questions and/or tasks to evaluate his memory status.

Screenings are given by doctors, nurse practitioners, psychologists, social workers or other healthcare professionals in thousands of sites across the country. It’s also important to know that this screening is not a diagnosis. Instead, its goal is to detect problems and refer individuals with these problems for further evaluation.

To find a screening site in your area visit NationalMemoryScreening.org or call 866-232-8484. It’s best to check for a screening location at the end of October, because new sites are constantly being added.

See a Doctor

If you can’t find a screening site in your area, make an appointment with his primary care doctor to get a cognitive checkup. This is covered 100 percent by Medicare as part of their annual wellness visit. If his doctor suspects any problems, he may give him the Memory Impairment Screen, the General Practitioner Assessment of Cognition, or the Mini Cog. Each test can be given in less then five minutes.

Depending on his score, his doctor may order follow-up tests or simply keep it on file so he can see if there are any changes down the road. Or, he may then refer him to a geriatrician or neurologist who specializes in diagnosing and treating memory loss or Alzheimer’s disease.

Keep in mind that even if your husband is experiencing some memory problems, it doesn’t necessarily mean he has dementia. Many memory problems are brought on by other factors like stress, depression, thyroid disease, side effects of medications, sleep disorders, vitamin deficiencies and other medical conditions. And by treating these conditions he can reduce or eliminate the problem.

Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit SavvySenior.org. Jim Miller is a contributor to the NBC Today show and author of “The Savvy Senior” book.

 

   

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