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Graffiti grans and noisy knees

In her latest News Space blog, Age Space’s Annabel James looks at news about dementia, elderly care and more…

Some great Age Space news: our podcasts are back!

What is NHS Continuing Care? When and how to apply for it. In the latest episode in our new podcast series Annabel James and friendly financial guru Jason Butler simplify a complicated issue. You can listen to it here and find all our podcasts to date on

Medical prescriptions will become fully digital next month under an NHS plan to save £300m over two years, Jo Churchill, the primary care minister, has announced.

Under the electronic system, patients can get their medications by either nominating a pharmacy that will receive the details directly from their GP or receive a paper prescription with the digital barcode. Read more here

Creaky joints? Warm, damp days lead to aches and pains

Hearing someone say their knee is playing up because of the weather is pretty common – usually because of the cold, Some say they can even predict the weather based on how their joints feel.

But in fact, people with long-term health problems such as arthritis are more likely to feel pain on humid days, a study has suggested.

A University of Manchester study of 2,500 people, which collected data via smartphones, found symptoms were actually worse on warmer, damper days. Researchers hope the findings will steer future research into why that is. Check out the BBC News report

What’s that noise? It’s my knee!

And on the subject of dodgy knees, technology used by engineers to listen for faults in bridges could be used to diagnose ‘noisy’ arthritic knees, a study suggests.

It involved a tiny microphone being attached to participants’ knees to pick up high-frequency sounds.

Although not audible to humans, the waveforms can be analysed by computers to give an insight into knee health. More info here

A toolkit on nutrition for people with dementia

Research led by the Ageing and Dementia Research Centre at Bournemouth University has resulted in the development of a toolkit that’s helping to transform nutritional care for people with dementia.

This has reached almost 1,000 known recipients to date – receiving a positive response from nurses and allied health professionals, hospital and care home staff, and helping to reverse trends such as weight loss among people living in care homes. Find out more and watch the video:

And finally… Glasgow’s Graffiti Grans

Normally, you won’t find many pensioners picking up a paint can to tag the city – but it’s proving a powerful way to fend off social isolation and loneliness among housing association tenants in Glasgow.

The wonderfully alliterative Graffiti Grandparents lets elderly residents with local housing associations get a lesson in  street art in the city’s Partick area.

They channel their inner Banksys to create large-scale murals themed around the group’s Livingwell service. More on this here