Healthy Peterborough

Ageing well

#50,000 reasons

There are 50,000 people over the age of 65 in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough who may be at risk of loneliness. Many older people can go a month or more without talking to a friend, family member or neighbour.

Loneliness and poor social connections are as bad for your health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day.

Together we can help end loneliness. It doesn't take a big commitment, or a lot of time.

Watch the "Be More Us" video


Small things you can do to help

Older people in Cambridgeshire have told us that a smile, wave, or hello from another person can make all the difference. It only takes a few seconds to help someone feel less isolated.

  • Start with a 'hello', a wave or even strike up a conversation.

  • Send a Christmas card to the older people in your street. You could include an offer of help, should they need it.

  • Reassure older neighbours by getting another neighbour to introduce you.

  • If you call on a neighbour, make your first call short. Give them the opportunity to see who you are, that you are genuine and show interest in them.

  • Have a 'mince pie moment'. Host a small, informal gathering on a Saturday or Sunday morning and invite your older neighbours to come along.

  • Take 10 minutes each week to phone a friend or family member you haven't spoken to in a while.

  • Write a letter to someone who has made a difference to your life.

  • Encourage children to greet older neighbours.

Going days without human contact is a reality for a lot of older people. Can you imagine how it would feel to lose contact with the outside world for a week? A video called "The Loneliness Project" shows how hard it can be to be alone for long periods.

Go to community toolkit for tackling social isolation and loneliness


Volunteering to reduce loneliness

Volunteering doesn't have to be a big commitment, to support those in your community who are lonely. Formal volunteering opportunities take from 30 minutes a month.

  • Cambridgeshire Library at Home service uses a network of volunteers to take books out to people who are unable to visit a library, and needs more volunteers.

  • Care Network Cambridgeshire would welcome volunteers for their help at home service, supporting people returning from hospital, and as community navigators.

  • Contact the Elderly holds monthly Sunday afternoon tea parties for over-75s and needs volunteer drivers and hosts.

  • Friends of the Elderly needs volunteers to help with its day centres, telephone befriending groups and coffee mornings in sheltered housing schemes.

  • Royal Voluntary Service wants volunteers who can help an older person with little tasks, such as doing their shopping and taking their dog for a walk, or delivering meals.

  • The Silver Line needs people to deliver this new helpline for older people.

  • Age UK Cambridgeshire and Peterborough has lots of volunteering opportunities and is currently looking for volunteer visitors for the visiting scheme.

  • Do-it volunteer for people and causes that matter to you.


Details of local volunteer centres

Volunteer centres can give you advice and help you to find volunteering opportunities. 


Volunteer stories

Anju T

Anju T 50,000 reasons article

My volunteering with Care Network has helped give me a different perspective on making a difference in my community and what it means to be more community conscience. I am more aware of the part I play within my community and the impact it has on others. I had a chance to speak with my local councillor recently to let her know how Care Network supports our community and what I do to help support people and make them feel less lonely.

Gordon R

I came to Care Network because I couldn't bear to think that there were people in my village or community who were on their own when there is something I can do to help. It is a humbling experience to know that I can offer any improvement to their life. During my visits I find it rewarding to be able to offer any support with inspiring people to enjoy life again as they used to.


Help if you are lonely

In Peterborough, contact the Peterborough Council for Voluntary Service on 01733 342 683.

In Cambridgeshire, contact Care Network on 01954 211 919 or email admin@care-network.org.uk

Visit the Cambridgeshire County Council website for information on how you can beat loneliness.

Stay stronger for longer!

We all want to continue to share our lives with loved ones as we get older, such as playing with grandchildren and socialising with friends.

Simple strength and balance exercises twice a week are a proven to keep you stronger for longer, independent and enjoying the great things in life, whether by joining a class or doing it yourself at home.

The Stronger for longer campaign has been developed by Peterborough City Council working with local NHS health partners.

Strength and balance classes help local lady stay stronger for longer

A major new strength and balance campaign is launching this International Older People’s day to help people in Peterborough and Cambridgeshire stay stronger for longer. 

Christina Lawrence, from Wimblington, March, said the Falls Prevention service at Everyone Health in Doddington has changed her life is now able to do the things she enjoys again like walking her dog.

Christina, 73, said: “I had a few falls after my knee operation which caused it to give way regularly, I had also suffered two mini strokes which frightened me and knocked my confidence to a point where I was afraid to do the normal day-to-day activities. I was petrified of losing my independence and not being able to look after myself or my dog, so I knew I had to get some help.”

Christina began a regular programme of strength and balance exercises three to four times a week after being shown how to do them by her health trainer Elliott. 

“The programme overall has given me confidence, as I felt very vulnerable before I joined the programme,” she said. “It has also opened doors to new activities, I have now recently just joined a Jive club and started to go swimming with a friend which I never thought I’d be able to do. My ability to be able to carry out day to day tasks has also improved. I am able to do these tasks with a lot more confidence and without being afraid to, whereas before I was even afraid to walk my dog but now I can enjoy these things a lot more.”

Simple strength and balance exercises twice a week are proven to keep you stronger for longer so you can keep you independent and enjoying the great things in life, whether it’s playing with grandchildren, shopping, socialising with friends or gardening.

Strength and Balance Home exercise programme

Try the Super Six Exercises

Take the Strength and Balance Challenge

Vivacity run an exercise class to help to improve your muscle strength, balance, stamina, flexibility and even boost your mental health. Sessions run every Friday between 1:30-2:30pm for £3.50 at The Lindens, Cross Keys Homes, PE1 2SN. To book call 01733 864764.

 

Why it is important to do strength and balance exercises

  • Research shows that group and home-based exercise programmes can reduce the rate of falls by 29 per cent and 32 per cent respectively while Tai Chi reduces the risk of falls by 28 per cent
  • Falls are one of the most commonest causes of accidental injury in older people and the commonest cause of accidental death in the population aged 75 and over in the UK
  • One in three people aged 65 and over will fall every year, increasing to one in two people over 80
  • There were 2,600 emergency hospital admissions due to falls in people 65+ in Cambridgeshire in 2016/17 and 628 admissions in Peterborough
  • The estimated cost of falls and fractures in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough in 2017 to health and social care was thought to be £85 million
  • The population is ageing and it is expected that the number of people sustaining an injurious fall will increase too
  • In 2016 the population of people aged 65 and over in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough was 119,070 and 28590 respectively. By 2031 the number of people 65 plus in Cambridgeshire will be 176,230 (a 49 per cent increase) and 43,600 (a 51 per cent increase) in Peterborough.

Super Six Exercises

 

  

Take the Strength and Balance Challenge

    

        

 

 

Safety check:

  • Use a sturdy and stable chair for support
  • If you are feeling quite unsteady, use a fixed object such as a kitchen work surface or dining table
  • Wear supportive shoes and comfortable clothes
  • If any exercise causes pain in your joints or muscles stop, check you are doing it correctly and try it again
  • Feeling your muscles work or a slight muscle soreness the next day is normal
  • If pain persists, seek advice from a physiotherapist
  • It you experience chest pain, shortness of breath or dizziness STOP IMMEDIATELY and contract your GP or call 111 if you GP practice is closed
  • Try not to hold your breath – breath normally throughout

Strength and Balance Home Exercise Programme

Safety

Ensure that the chair you use is sturdy and stable or use a more sturdy support such as the kitchen worktop or breakfast table if your instructor/therapist recommends this. Wear comfortable clothes and supportive footwear.

Prepare a space and have your exercise band and a glass of water (for afterwards) ready before you start.

While exercising, if you experience chest pain, dizziness or severe shortness of breath, stop immediately and contact your GP (or call an ambulance if you feel very unwell and your symptoms do not go away when you stop exercising).

If you experience pain in your joints or muscles, stop, check your position and try again. If the pain persists, seek advice from your Postural Stability Instructor. However, feeling your muscles working or slight muscle soreness the next day after exercise is normal and shows that the exercises are working.

Breathe normally throughout and enjoy yourself. Aim to do these exercises twice per week in addition to your exercise class.

If you are doing these exercises without attending a supervised exercise session, consult your GP to check it is suitable for you.

Video 1 https://youtu.be/NY7hi2du-3Q

Video 2 https://youtu.be/-0fEyrPmtSM

Video 3 https://youtu.be/e_1Yo8_Wct4

Video 4 https://youtu.be/ksxbTLe5ONI

 

Warm up Exercises

Always begin with a warm up to prepare your body for the main exercises. There are 4 warm up exercises. Complete them all if you are doing your exercises in one sessions. If you decide to spread your exercises over the day do the March warm yup exercise before you move on to do your strength, balance or stretch exercises.


March (warm up)

  • Stand (or sit) tall
  • Hold the back (or sides) of the chair
  • March with control
  • Build to a rhythm that is comfortable for you
  • Continue for 1-2 minutes

Shoulder Circles (warm up)

  • Stand (or sit) tall with your arms at your sides
  • Lift both shoulders up to your ears, draw them back then press them down
  • Repeat slowly 5 times


Ankle Loosener (warm up)

  • Stand side on to (or sit tall at the front of) the chair
  • Pull up tall
  • Hold the back (or sides) of the chair
  • Place the heel on one foot on the floor then lift it and put the toes down on the same spot
  • Repeat 5 times on each leg

Spine twists (warm up)

  • Stand (or sit) very tall with your feet hip width apart
  • Fold your arms across your chest
  • Twist your upper body and head to the right keeping your hips forwards
  • Repeat on the opposite side
  • Repeat 5 times

 

Main Exercises

There are 10 exercises below. Complete them all. Aim to do them twice per week on top of your exercise class and walks.  if you choose to do the exercises throughout the day, do a little march first to warm yourself up and prepare for exercise.  The first 6 exercises are to help improve your balance.

1. Heel Raises

  • Stand tall holding a sturdy chair, table or the sink
  • Raise your heels taking your weight over your big toe
  • Hold for a second
  • Lower your heels with control
  • Repeat 10 times

2. Toe Walk

  • Stand tall and side on to your support
  • Raise your heels (weight over big toe as before) then take 10 small steps forwards
  • Bring your feet together then lower your heels with control

3. Toe Raises

  • Stand tall holding your support
  • Raise your toes taking your weight back into your heels without sticking your bottom out
  • Hold for a second
  • Lower your toes with control
  • Repeat 10 times

4. Heel Walk

  • Stand tall and side on to your support
  • Raise your toes without sticking your bottom out then take 10 small steps forward
  • Lower your toes with control
  • Repeat in the other direction

5. Side Steps

  • Stand tall facing your support
  • Take a sideways step keeping the hips forward and the knees soft
  • Repeat side to side 10 times, building to a comfortable rhythm

6. Flamingo Swings

  • Stand tall and side on to your support
  • Swing the leg furthest from the chair forward and back with control
  • Perform 10 swings
  • Repeat on the other leg

The following 4 exercises are to help improve your bone and muscle strength.

7. Sit to Stand

  • Sit tall near the front of the chair
  • Place your feet slightly back
  • Lean forwards slightly
  • Stand up (using your hands on the chair if needed)
  • Step back until your legs touch the chair then slowly lower your bottom back into the chair
  • Repeat 10 times

8. Upper Back Strengthener

  • Hold the band with your palms facing upwards and your wrists straight
  • Pull your hands apart then draw the band towards your hips and squeeze your shoulder blades together
  • Hold for a slow count of 5 whilst breathing normally
  • Release, then repeat 7 more times

9. Outer Thigh Strengthener

  • Sit tall near the front of the chair with your feet and knees touching then wrap the band around your legs (keeping the band as flat as possible)
  • Take your feet and knees back to hop with apart
  • Push your knees outwards, keeping your feet flat on the floor and hold for a slow count of 5
  • Release, then repeat 7 more times

10. Thigh Strengthener

  • Sit tall at the front of your chair
  • Place the band under the ball on one foot and grasp it with both hands at knee level
  • Lift your foot just off the floor then pull your hands to your hips
  • Now press your heel away from you until your leg is straight and your heel is just off the floor
  • Hold for a slow count of 5 then return to the starting position
  • Repeat 6-8 times on each leg

Ending the Session

Finish by marching at a relaxed pace for 1-2 minutes then perform all the following stretches

Chest Stretch

  • Sit tall away from the back of the chair
  • Reach behind with both arms and grasp the chair back
  • Press your chest upwards and forwards until you feel the stretch across your chest
  • Hold for 10-20 seconds

Back of Thigh Stretch

  • Make sure you are right at the front of the chair
  • Straighten one leg placing the heel on the floor
  • Place both hands on the other leg then sit really tall
  • Lean forwards with a straight back until you feel the stretch in the back of your thigh
  • Hold for 10-20 seconds
  • Repeat on the other leg

Calf Stretch

  • Stand behind the chair holding on with both hands
  • Step back with one leg and press the heel down
  • Check that both feet face directly forwards
  • Feel the stretch in your calf
  • Hold for 10-20 seconds
  • Repeat on the other leg

Finished

Well done!  You have finished your exercises for today.  Try to do these home exercises three times per week. Set a day and a time aside for another session now.

Balance Progression

Once you are performing the balance exercises with confidence on a regular basis, you should aim to GRADUALLY reduce the amount of hand support you use.  This can be done be releasing your little fingers to see if you can still maintain balance.  The next set is to release your ring fingers and when you have mastered this, your middle fingers so that you are now balancing by supporting only with your index fingers.  Make sure you master balancing at each stage before progressing to the next.

Sit Less

We now know that long periods sitting, like watching the television all evening, are not good for our health.  The more we sit, the more likely we are to get thicker around the waist, develop diabetes, become less mobile and have a low mood.  People who get up more regularly and break up long periods of sitting (every 1-2 hours at least) are more mobile and healthy.  

Tips to break up long periods of sitting:

  • Stand up after a few chapters of your book
  • Remain standing while the kettle boils
  • Do one of the standing exercises in this programme

10 tips for ageing better

We know it’s not just about living longer, it’s about living healthily and happily for longer. Follow our top 10 tips for ageing better.

1. Watch what you eat and drink

Having a balanced diet is crucial for good health, energy and preventing illness. An ideal diet should be low in saturated fat, with lots of fruit and vegetables, wholegrains, oily fish, and small amounts of low-fat dairy and lean meat. Don’t forget to top-up with lots of water to avoid dehydration, which can make you feel tired and confused. Tea, coffee and fruit juice will also help you to stay hydrated, but avoid sugary fizzy drinks. See our healthy eating guide for lots more information.

If you drink alcohol, keep at least two days per week booze-free to give your liver time to recover from the toxic effects of alcohol, and don’t exceed recommended daily limits for alcohol consumption.

2. Look after your teeth

Brush your teeth twice a day and floss daily. Floss helps to prevent gum disease by removing pieces of food and plaque from between the teeth. If it’s left to build up you might notice sore or bleeding gums, and gum disease can also be linked to diabetes, strokes, heart disease and rheumatoid arthritis. Have regular check-ups and, if you wear dentures or have a bridge, ask your dentist to check that they fit properly. Find out more about dental care.

3. Stay active

Daily exercise helps you to stay strong and healthy. This will lower your risk of obesity, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and even cancer. If that wasn’t enough, staying active can boost your self-esteem, improve your sleep, and give you more energy. Government guidelines recommend that older adults do 150 minutes of moderate intensity activity per week, as well as strengthening exercises twice a week. If that sounds like a lot, start small and as you get stronger you will be able to work up to those amounts.

Find out more about what exercise might suit you.

4. Make the most of your GP

It’s a good idea to get some routine tests done at the doctors to check your blood pressure and cholesterol levels. High readings increase your risk factor for stroke and heart disease but any problems are completely reversible with medication.

Whilst you’re there, why not ask your doctor about the seasonal flu jab? It’s free once you reach 65, or if you have a health condition that puts you at risk of more serious problems if you caught the flu. Also see our list of 7 health tests that can save your life.

5. Get a vitamin boost

Lots of people have a vitamin D deficiency and don’t know it. In fact, it’s estimated that it affects half of the adult population. Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to cognitive impairment, bone problems and also cardiovascular disease.

Try to get outside in the sunshine for at least 15-20 minutes a day for a vitamin D boost. It can also be found in food such as eggs and oily fish. Alternatively, talk to your doctor about a vitamin D supplement.

6. Take care of your feet

Look after your feet by applying moisturiser to prevent dry skin and cutting your toenails straight across. Make sure you have footwear that fits properly and supports your feet. If they are sore you may be tempted to stay in slippers, but a pair of trainers could be a good option as they are more supportive.

Contact your GP if your feet become painful, feel very hot or cold or if you have common problems like corns, bunions or ingrown toenails. See our guide to common foot problems.

7. Sort out your sleep

Many of us have trouble getting – or staying – asleep as we get older. This can leave you feeling tired and grumpy. Avoid insomnia by cutting down on daytime naps, establishing a bedtime routine and going to bed at the same time each night. Try a warm drink such as chamomile tea or hot milk before you go to bed.

8. Take the tests

As we age our hearing and eyesight can be affected, so it’s important to get them checked regularly. Hearing loss is common in older people so see your GP if you have to have the TV on loud or having trouble tuning into conversations. If you need a hearing aid, some are available on the NHS.

Have your eyes checked every year if you are aged 70 or over, and every two years if you are under 70. This means that changes in your vision can be corrected and any problems can be picked up before they seriously affect your sight. Eye tests are free if you are over 60.

9. Stay in touch

Spending time with other people can prevent you from feeling lonely or anxious. If you find that you are no longer able to do the things you used to do, try to develop new hobbies and interests or think about becoming a volunteer. Use Skype to make video phone calls to friends and family who don’t live nearby, or find out more about our befriending services.

If you are single, divorced, or bereaved and would like to meet someone, read our online guide to dating.

10. Give up smoking

Smoking is bad for your body and your brain. It is linked to a whole range of different health problems, including heart disease, lung cancer, and bronchitis. The good news is that if you stop smoking, regardless of your age, your circulation, your lung capacity and your energy levels will improve. Find out more here.

Living well with dementia

Dementia is caused when parts of the brain stop working properly due to disease or trauma. The symptoms may include memory loss, changes in thought, mood, and behaviour. We do not fully understand the causes yet although eating healthily and being physically active can reduce the risk of some types of dementia in later life.

The number of people with dementia in Peterborough is increasing, as we are all living longer. Do you know anyone affected by dementia?

For many people, it can be a worrying time when either you, or a person you care about, are diagnosed with dementia. There are ways you can get help and lots of information to help you make sense of the experience. There are local opportunities to support you to overcome problems and improve your quality of life.

Based at the Dementia Resource Centre, the Alzheimer’s Society provides a one-stop shop for residents of Peterborough whose lives are affected by dementia. Advice, information and support are available to ensure that those who have a diagnosis of dementia and their carers are able to get the help they need in everyday life.

Many services are run from the resource centre, including a monthly dementia café, cognitive stimulation, peer support, carer support and information, and a service user review panel. Activity groups include art & craft, gardening, singing and current affairs.

Mr & Mrs M have been coming to the centre since shortly after it opened. They both currently attend Singing for the Brain. Mrs M enjoys helping to maintain the Dementia Resource Centre garden and has told me how many friends she has made amongst other carers.  They often come along just to have lunch at our on-site café and meet others for support & social interaction.  Mrs M said that without our support and the centre, she wouldn’t know what she would do and probably wouldn’t be able to cope on her own. 

We can all show consideration to people with dementia in our local communities – why not find out more about becoming adementia friend and increasing your understanding of dementia so that you can be supportive to those around you?

Keeping active

Living healthily in middle age can double your chances of being healthy when you are 70.  Being active is critical to maintain a healthy body and mind for later years, and poorer health in later life is not inevitable.

Older age can mean living as well as young people by making relatively small changes to our habits and lifestyles now.  Not being active increases our risk of many conditions that will impact on future quality of life, including dementia, osteoarthritis and general physical limitations in older age. 

Older adults can be more at risk of falling, and should do exercises to improve balance and co-ordination on at least two days a week, such as yoga, tai chi and dancing. 

Being active slows the natural breakdown of your bones and muscles, and helps us maintain a healthy weight and good circulation. It also helps maintain our brains. 

If you’re looking to be active with the children or grandchildren, there are over 200 play areas for families of all ages in and around PeterboroughFacilities at some of the parks such as Central Park include a paddling pool, sensory garden, an aviary, a cafe and sports playing grounds.  The Embankment is within easy walking distance of the city centre and runs along the picturesque views of the River Nene, Bretton Park boasts one of the largest green open spaces whilst Itter Park in Paston has a bowling green and a putting green.

Don't fall for it!

Improving safety in the home can help you stay active and independent. 

Falls, slips and trips are a leading cause of disability among older people so it’s important for you to consider what you can do to help make your home and environment safe.  

Clearing away clutter, ensuring floors and carpets are safe, making sure your home is well lit and installing handrails where necessary are all useful suggestions for improving safety.

Remaining active, eating well, paying attention to foot problems, properly fitting shoes and slippers can all contribute to avoiding falls. Addressing factors in the home together with remaining active and eating well, will all help you stay active and continue doing the things you enjoy doing.

For more information on preventing falls at home, visit the Age UK website.

 

Get an NHS Health Check

If you're aged 40-74, you can expect to receive a letter from your GP or local authority inviting you for a free NHS Health Check. Like a ‘midlife MOT’, it aims to control risk factors and help prevent diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease, stroke and dementia.

It includes some basic questions, a blood pressure and BMI check and some blood tests. Your healthcare professional will discuss your results with you. The NHS Health Check is an ideal opportunity to gain advice and support for healthier lifestyle choices like keeping active, eating healthily, not smoking and drinking less alcohol.

As we get older, we have a higher risk of developing something dangerous like high blood pressure, heart disease or type 2 diabetes. Your NHS Health Check can help prevent these, helping you to enjoy life for longer.

More information is available at: http://www.healthcheck.nhs.uk/ 

Services to prevent falls

It is estimated that residents of Peterborough who fall in 2016 will result in over:
 
  • 1,010 GP attendances
  • 1,208 ambulance call outs
  • 1,585 A&E attendances 
  • 555 hospital inpatient admissions
The associated costs of these are estimated to be over £39 million.
 
The city council's Home Services Delivery Team provides a range of services that are focused around Falls Prevention. These include:
 
The Handyperson service:

This service provides a wide range of practical support for older, disabled and vulnerable people to help maintain independent living, including:
  • small building repairs
  • odd jobs (for example, putting up curtain rails or shelves which prevent use of ladders and falling)
  • general home safety checks with remedial action 
  • falls/accident prevention checks with remedial action to reduce risks (for example, securing loose carpets, putting up grab rails, suitable lighting)
  • security checks with remedial action (for example, installing locks, chains, spy-holes)
  • small home energy efficiency measures (for example, installing low energy light bulbs, replacing appliances)
  • fire safety (for example, installation of smoke alarms, electric blanket checks, chip pan/fat fryer exchange), and
  • signposting clients to other services
 
Repairs Assistance Grants
  • Up to a maximum of £20,000 (means tested) for owner occupied property to address a range of hazards in the home including tripping hazards, falls between levels such as unsafe staircases, falls on the level such as uneven paving
  • Heating grants to repair, replace or provide central heating systems. Cold homes cause both physical and mental harm. They can lead to circulatory problems as blood becomes thicker in lower temperatures, leading to stroke and heart attacks, as well as reduced mobility leading to falls or other injury. 

 

Call (01733) 863860 for Handyperson and repairs assistance

 
 
Disabled Facility Grants
  • Up to a maximum of £30,000 (means tested) to adapt a person's home to enable them to remain living independently at home, this can range from a stairlift, through floor lift, level access shower to an extension to provide ground floor sleeping and bathing facilities, all of which include falls prevention.
 
Assistive Technology
  • Assistive Technology (AT) covers a wide variety of equipment and devices, both simple and complex that can promote independence and enable living at home for longer. This includes aids for sensory impaired clients, and clients with cognitive impairment, dementia and learning disabilities, including equipment and devices which can prevent falls.

Minor Aids and Adaptations

  • assistance with discharge to enable care at home such as fitting key safes, equipment, grab rails, ramps
 

For further information call (01733) 747474.

 

Benefits of exercise

The more you sit, the weaker and more frail you become.  See below for problems you can reduce the risk of avoiding with exercise.

Problem I have or
want to avoid
Exercise can help because What you will notice

No energy
Short of breath

Improves stamina and muscle power.
Removes waste quicker Stimulates circulation to all organs including the brain.
Lose weight.

It is easier to move from place to place.
Feel less sluggish.
More energy for day-to-day activities.

High Blood, Pressure Heart attack, Heart disease, Stroke

Helps lower cholesterol level, stress hormones and muscle tension.
Helps lower blood pressure.
Keeps the heart muscle strong.
Aids circulation and helps blood and body fluids to move.

Feel better, more energetic.
Feel less dizzy.
Prevents ankle swelling, blood clots, leg ulcers and foot pain.

Over-weight

Burns more calories and replaces inactive fat with muscle. 
Increases muscle mass.

Muscles burn calories even when you sleep, so losing weight and keeping it down is easier.

 

Swollen feet The movement of muscles massages veins so blood and fluids return from the feet.

Reduces swollen ankles and feet. 
Walking becomes easier.

Osteoporosis Muscle pulling on bone stimulates bone growth, making bones stronger and less likely to break. Standing or weight bearing for 4 hours a day helps

Less likely to break a bone if you fall.
Less pain.
Better posture helps prevent falls.

Arthritis

Stronger muscles help to hole the joints in correct position so there is less wear and tear on them.
Moving joints helps to 'nourish' them and keeps a good range of movement.

Less wear and tear on joints means less pain.
You will be able to keep doing things for yourself - wash hair, do up buttons, put own shoes one, walk more easily and safely.

Cancer: Breast, Colon, Prostate

Burns fat, which stores carcinogens.
Gets ride of waste quicker.

More regular bowel movement.
Feel more comfortable in the abdomen.
Burning fat helps to lose weight.

Kidney Disease

Lowers blood pressure and blood sugars so less risk to kidneys.
Being upright helps kidneys to drain.
Stimulates circulation and thirst.
Removes body waste and drug “left overs”

Kidney infections can cause backache and a general feeling of lethargy.
Will feel thirsty, improving fluid intake, increased urine flow, flushing kidneys and decreasing the chance of stagnation, infections and stones.
Feel more lively and energetic

Can’t Sleep at night
Night visits to the loo

Using the body during the day will help muscles relax and rest at night.
Helps fluid circulate from legs to kidneys during the day rather than at night.

Getting a better night’s sleep will aid restful sleep, helping you to feel more alert and energetic on waking.

Constipation, Bloating

 

Stimulates circulation and colon activity.
Decreases need for medicines.

Feel more energetic. 
Feel more comfortable.
Less wind to deal with.

 

Depressed
Don’t like the way I look

Exercise releases endorphins, “feel good” chemicals in the brain which help you to feel cheerful and positive.
Lose weight.
Tone up muscles.

Release of endorphins helps you to feel happy and alert.
May not need medicines or so many.
Toning the body and losing weight will make you look better, clothes fit better.
Improving self-esteem.

 Low back pain

Improves abdominal muscle tone.
Improves posture.
Prevents constipation and bloating which stresses muscles causing pain.

Better posture and good abdominal muscles will help prevent back pain and make you feel better about yourself.
Good posture helps in preventing trips and falls.

 Urinary incontinence

Stimulates muscle tone and thirst, which stimulates urine flow.
Stronger deep abdominal muscles will also mean stronger pelvic floor muscles.
Drinking more will stop dehydration which causes headaches and lethargy.
Moving easier so no delay in toileting, will prevent infection and overfilling.

The deep abdominal muscles work together with the pelvic floor muscle which will make it easier to control the urge to urinate.
Less fear of accidents happening. 
Less headaches, feel more energetic.

 Injury  

Exercise increases strength, flexibility and balance.
Encourages better posture and body alignment.
Decreases wear and tear.
Decreases chance of falls and injury.

 

More confident to move about.
Less pain if muscles are stronger.
Everyday tasks become easier and therefore less tiring, so more energy and “verve”.

Local Dementia Support

The word dementia describes a set of symptoms that may include memory loss and difficulties with thinking, problem solving, perception or language.

A person with dementia may also experience changes in their mood or behaviour. Dementia is caused when the brain is damaged by diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease or a series of strokes. There are over a hundred different types of dementia of which Alzheimer’s disease is the most common followed closely by Vascular Dementia. It is possible to have more than one type of dementia at the same time and this is known as Mixed dementia. More detailed information is available on the Alzheimer’s Society’s website www.alzheimers.org.uk

Based at the Dementia Resource Centre (DRC), the Alzheimer’s Society provides a one-stop shop for residents of Peterborough whose lives are affected by dementia. Advice, information and support are available to ensure that those who have a diagnosis of dementia and their carers are able to get the help they need in everyday life.

Dementia Support Workers and a Dementia Adviser are able to meet people at the DRC or in their own home to provide information and signposting as well as guidance on practical matters and emotional support. The Advocate is able to help people with dementia to express their views, to access information and services and to secure their rights.

Some of the services that take place at the DRC include:

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Hairdressing
(by appointment)
Open Minds
Chair Yoga, OOMPH, Young On-Set group Open Carers Group, Singing for the Brain (Wrens) Dementia Café Singing for the Brain (Nightingales and Larks – fortnightly)

Other services are available by invitation. Please contact the DRC on 01733 893853 or peterborough@alzheimers.org.uk.  All the services are designed to improve and enhance wellbeing, maintain independence and prevent crisis situations.

If you would like to help by becoming a volunteer please contact our Volunteering Officer, Debbie Holmes, on 01733 893853 or debbie.holmes@alzheimers.org.uk

Another way of becoming involved is through Dementia Friends at www.dementiafriends.org.uk

 

This is a note that was received recently, written by someone who uses the Dementia Resource Centre services.

"The DRC is the most amazing place. We have been helped more than we can ever hope to say. My wife loves her Arts & Crafts group so much and everyone helps her so much. Her confidence has improved in leaps and bounds and she has made lots of lovely friends. The staff are so professional and caring and have helped me many times when I have been very low with my caring role. We are so blessed to be here. Thank you for all that you do."

Eat a healthy, balanced diet to reduce your risk of dementia

Eating a healthy, balanced diet is important for your physical health and mental health. Staying a healthy weight helps to protect against dementia, throughout your life.

Eat at least five portions of a variety of fruits and vegetables a day. A balance of carbohydrates (foods like potatoes, bread, rice or pasta), protein (beans, pulses, fish, eggs or meat), dairy (milk or soya), unsaturated oils and spreads in small amounts. Eat less saturated fats, salt and sugars. Drink plenty of water (6-8 glasses a day).

Even if you cannot get a perfect balance in every meal, try to get the balance over the day or week.

You can get more advice on our Healthy Eating pages or NHS Live Well, which includes the Eatwell guide5 A Day tips and 12 week Weight Loss pack.

Being active reduces the risk of falls and dementia

Being active at all ages is essential for keeping healthy and well and ensuring you carry on doing the things you enjoy in everyday life and it reduces the risk of dementia and falls.

All adults, including older people, should aim to do at least 150 minutes of moderate physical activity a week in bouts of 10 minutes or more to stay healthy. This means that the activity should cause you to become warmer, breathe harder and make your heart beat faster. Brisk walking, ballroom dancing and water aerobics are good examples of moderate physical activities.

Equally important are activities to improve muscle strength and bone health. This could include light resistance exercises or carrying or moving loads such as groceries and activities that improve your balance.  Specific strength and balance exercises that improve balance and co-ordination help reduce the risk of falls. Speak to your local Public Health team on 0800 376 56 55 or gym to get you started and continue doing these exercises regularly at home.

Our understanding about the benefits of exercise is not new, but we now know how important it is to protect against dementia too. People often feel much better after getting out and doing exercise. Joining an exercise group is a good way of staying socially active too, improving your confidence and wellbeing. Try to make it fun!

Think about how you can build exercise into your daily life - walk or cycle rather than drive, go out to the park, plan activities with your family and friends.  Check out the Healthy Peterborough Physical Activity pages for more information on the FREE local programme, or find out about FREE local walks.

Older people who have fallen in the last year or feel at risk of falling are encouraged to do strength and balance exercises to improve balance and co-ordination. These exercises can be done at home.

If you have any pre-existing medical condition please check with your GP before carrying out physical activity.

For more information about staying active in older life visit the Age UK website:

 

Cancer Screening

Healthy lifestyle changes can prevent many cases of cancer, screening aims to drive down cancer cases even further. National programmes are in place for breast cancer screening, cervical screening and bowel cancer screening to help identify cancer at an early stage when it's more treatable.

What can I do to reduce my risk of cancer?

Screening: take up the offer of cancer screening. By regularly attending appointments for cervical, bowel, and breast cancer screening, you have the best chance of spotting signs early when it’s more treatable or prevent cancer from developing at all.

Check yourself: Make sure you know the key symptoms of the main cancers and regularly check yourself for any changes. It's important to know your body and recognise any potential symptoms of cancer, such as lumps, change in bowel habit, unexplained weight loss, pain or bleeding. Get advice from your GP early about whether they might be serious. Find out more information on signs and symptoms of cancer.

Cervical Screening

Cervical screening (a smear test) is a test to check the health of the cells of the cervix. From the age of 25 all women registered with a GP will be invited for a cervical screening every three years. Between the age of 50 and 64, women will be invited every five years. Women over 65 will be invited to be screened if they haven’t been screened since 50 or have recently had an abnormal test result. Each year cervical screening saves 5,000 lives in the UK. Not going for cervical screening is one of the biggest risk factors for developing cervical cancer.

Bowel Cancer Screening

Taking part in bowel cancer screening reduces your chances of dying from bowel cancer, and removing polyps in bowel scope screening can prevent cancer. If bowel cancer is detected at an early stage, before symptoms appear, it's easier to treat and there's a better chance of surviving it. If you’re aged between 60 and 74, you will be invited to take part in bowel cancer screening every two years. If you’re aged 75 or over, you can request a screening test by calling the bowel cancer screening helpline on 0800 707 60 60.

Breast Cancer Screening

About one in eight women in the UK are diagnosed with breast cancer during their lifetime. There's a good chance of recovery if it's detected in its early stages. Women aged 50 to 70 are invited for a breast screening every three years. Women over the age of 70 can ask for an appointment.

Active in younger years helps you age well

Living healthily in middle age can double your chances of being healthy when you are 70.  Being active is critical to maintain a healthy body and mind for later years, and poorer health in later life is not inevitable.

Older age can mean living as well as young people by making relatively small changes to our habits and lifestyles now.  Not being active increases our risk of many conditions that will impact on future quality of life, including dementia, osteoarthritis and general physical limitations in older age. 

Older adults can be more at risk of falling, and should do exercises to improve balance and co-ordination on at least two days a week, such as yoga, tai chi and dancing. 

Being active slows the natural breakdown of your bones and muscles, and helps us maintain a healthy weight and good circulation. It also helps maintain our brains. 

If you’re looking to be active with the children or grandchildren, there are over 200 play areas for families of all ages in and around PeterboroughFacilities at some of the parks such as Central Park include a paddling pool, sensory garden, an aviary, a cafe and sports playing grounds.  The Embankment is within easy walking distance of the city centre and runs along the picturesque views of the River Nene, Bretton Park boasts one of the largest green open spaces whilst Itter Park in Paston has a bowling green and a putting green.

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