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Stately homes, gardening and a long, long life!

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

Grand days out ahead

Some of Britain’s best loved historic and countryside sites are to be given dementia-friendly makeovers – thanks to a pioneering collaboration between two charities.

Struggling to get into venues, being overwhelmed by exhibition texts and leaflets and having difficulty with payment methods are some of the challenges facing people with dementia.

Now, clearer signage and modified materials used on paths and car parks at 500 sites in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, are among the initiatives in the National Trust and the Alzheimer’s Society’s three-year project. Read more here

Age-friendly community gardening

Community gardening and food growing in the UK has a long, proud history. It has endured in even densely populated urban areas as our towns and cities have changed over the years.

The Growing Connections project is supporting community gardens to be age-friendly and inclusive in everything they do.

It’s one of five projects awarded funding by the Centre for Ageing Better and Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) to pilot ways of making volunteering more age-friendly and inclusive. More on this here

The fear of another stroke…

New research from the Stroke Association shows nine out of ten stroke survivors (more than one million people in Britain) live in fear of having another stroke. 

This leaves them scared to go out alone and fearful about making a recovery in the aftermath of their stroke. The fear itself can be an impediment to recovering after a stroke. There’s more about this and some useful advice from Independent Living

Walking and dementia research

Walking may be a key clinical tool in helping medics accurately identify the specific type of dementia a patient has, pioneering research has revealed.

For the first time, scientists at Newcastle University have shown that people with Alzheimer’s disease or Lewy body dementia have unique walking patterns that signal subtle differences between the two conditions.

The research shows that people with Lewy body dementia change their walking steps more – varying step time and length – and are asymmetric when they move, in comparison to those with Alzheimer’s disease. More to read here

Live long and prosper!

Did you know that the longest-living people in the world have nine things in common?

There are a few places in the world—specifically Okinawa, Japan; Sardinia, Italy; Nicoya, Costa Rica; and Icaria, Greece—where living to be over 100 isn’t uncommon at all. In these regions, known as Blue Zones, the life expectancy isn’t just higher; centenarians are generally also healthy, their minds and bodies still working well.

National Geographic journalist Dan Buettner spent years studying each culture, pinpointing the exact reasons why they thrived before publishing his findingsBuettner found that despite the geographical differences, people living in the Blue Zones all had nine key lifestyle habits in common. Discover them here

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