Home for the Holidays: Signs Your Aging Loved One May Need Help

Published on 25 November 2015

The holidays are a common time for families to gather. When we live apart, we often don't realize changes are occurring in our aging loved ones until we are together for an extended period of time. If you have family members who are older, this is when you may notice changes in behavior, routines and lifestyle.

Bah Humbug: Consumers Not Prepared for Holiday Scammers

Published on 25 November 2015

With the holidays upon us, a new survey from the AARP Fraud Watch Network shows the traditional season for giving may become a peak time for taking among con-artists targeting Washington consumers.

Take Action Against Poverty—Senior Volunteers Make the Difference!

Published on 25 November 2015

Perhaps you are interested in making a direct impact in your community, but don't know where to start. Good news—we have a great volunteering opportunity waiting for you!

Creating Age- and Disability-Friendly Communities

Published on 29 October 2015

Good news! Aging and Disability Services filed its final draft Area Plan for 2016-2019 for Seattle-King County with the State Unit on Aging, part of the DSHS Aging and Long-Term Support Administration, on Oct. 5, 2015. State approval is expected in early 2016.

Caring for a Centenarian

Published on 29 October 2015

Ninety-nine year old Roy McKinley is an amazing man. For many years he was the primary caregiver for his beloved wife, Vivian, who was confined to a wheelchair due to Guillain-Barre Syndrome, a rare disorder. During his time caregiving for Vivian, Roy was referred to the Aging and Disability Services (ADS)  for respite care services.

Diabetes Education and Support: Everyone Has a Role. What's Yours?

Published on 29 October 2015

Diabetes affects everyone, not just those living with the disease, but family members, friends, the emergency response system, hospitals, behavioral health systems, employers, housing providers, and various other groups.

Senior couple at home in kitchen focusing on angry man

Elder DV May Involve Adult Children, Non-Family

Published on 1 October 2015

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. When people hear "domestic violence" or "DV," they almost always think of abuse and exploitation by an intimate partner. Although Aging and Disability Services certainly sees and serves individuals where this is the case, we see an overwhelming volume of abuse and exploitation against elders by other family members, "friends" and trusted others such as real estate agents, neighbors, financial planners, gardeners and housekeepers.

Shady Signals—Washington Wireless Users Unaware, Unprepared for Online Attacks

Published on 1 October 2015

With the latest in smart phones, tablets, and wireless web access, staying connected has never been easier. The power of wireless computing and communications puts information and resources just a click away at home or at our favorite coffee shop.

Taking a Stand to Prevent Falls

Published on 27 August 2015

Many people take a stand on health and social issues. This year's falls prevention theme is "Take a Stand to Prevent Falls." With the first day of fall just around the corner, falls should not be "just around the corner" for older adults.

Stay Connected: Get to Know Your Neighbors

Published on 30 July 2015

I think of Dori Gillam's article ("The Village Model: Everyone has Something to Contribute to Aging in Place") as sort of a Village Model 101—enough to get you started plus links to local resources. For many people, membership in a virtual village ensures many more years of aging in place, not only because of the services available but opportunities to stay connected.

NeighborTies: Strengthening Elders in Our Community

Published on 30 July 2015

The Southeast Seattle Senior Center has launched a new volunteer program called NeighborTies, which will match an elder living in Southeast Seattle with a trained volunteer who will come to their home at least twice a month.

Decluttering Just Got Easier

Published on 30 July 2015

Spring cleaning has turned into summer cleaning. Some of us are downsizing or moving. We've got too much stuff! Aiiiieeeeee!

Online Services Can Help Keep You Safe in an Emergency

Published on 30 July 2015

Two online services can help residents of Seattle and King County in emergencies. Smart911 enhances the ability of emergency responders to reach and serve people who call 9-1-1. AlertSeattle provides emergency alerts to Seattle residents. Seattle residents who sign up for Smart911 will be prompted to also sign up for AlertSeattle; however, registration for either program is available separately.

I Am No Less Capable Than Before

Published on 30 June 2015

My impatient style set me up for that fall. A cane probably couldn't have prevented the trip but might have softened the fall and made it less likely that I would spend three hours in an emergency department getting an MRI and then spend time and money having to replace my glasses.

How to Plan an Accessible Public Meeting

Published on 30 June 2015

This year we celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, an important piece of civil rights legislation that prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in employment, transportation, public accommodation, communications, and governmental activities.

Shape Up! Encourages Older Adults to Remain Active, Reduce Falls

Published on 1 June 2015

The best way to reduce falls is to be physically active. When older adults choose activity programs that build strength, balance and flexibility, they significantly reduce their chances of experiencing a fall.

Coordinated Response Helps Prevent Abuse, Neglect, Exploitation

Published on 1 June 2015

Elder abuse is a growing problem in the United States, yet a largely hidden one.

How to Avoid Distracted Driving

Published on 29 April 2015

Even though it may feel like second nature, driving is a demanding task that requires your full attention, no matter how experienced you may consider yourself.

The Green Way to Travel in Your Neighborhood

Published on 29 April 2015

Neighborhood greenways are safer, calmer residential streets for you, your family and neighbors. Neighborhood greenways provide people of all ages and abilities with attractive places to walk, roll, ride a bike, skate, and run.

Everyday Behaviors Put Residents at Greater Risk of Tax ID Theft

Published on 2 March 2015

While it's tax season for Washington consumers, unfortunately it's also open season for scam artists looking to steal your personal information. The Washington State Attorney General's Office and the AARP Fraud Watch Network have launched an educational effort to help people protect themselves from tax scams.

Standing Up to Senior Falls: Local Program Promotes Independence and Safety at Home

Published on 2 March 2015

Do you know someone over 65 who has fallen? Have you reached that age and are concerned about your risk? Senior falls are all too common, with results that are often serious and sometime even grave.

Holidays—What a Trip!

Published on 2 December 2014

Trips, tumbles and falls—they happen every day. In Washington state, falls result in over 12,000 hospitalizations each year. That's why Aging and Disability Services—the Area Agency on Aging for Seattle-King County—and other Aging Network organizations emphasize falls prevention throughout the year. Falls safety precautions include exercise for balance and strength, medication review, vision exam, and removal of trip hazards.

Washington's State Alzheimer's Plan … and You!

Published on 2 December 2014

Do you have thoughts on how to improve the lives of people with Alzheimer's disease or related dementias and of their caregivers?

Personalized Caregiver Support Makes a World of Difference

Published on 30 October 2014

Would a few minutes of break time be life-changing to you?

Hopelink Travel Program Helps Take the Fear Out of Public Transit

Published on 30 September 2014

It's tricky to learn how to find bus stops, where to get on and off of buses, and how to ask for help when you don't speak English. For some, it's downright scary.

StopInfo for OneBusAway Helps Low Vision Bus Riders and Others

Published on 30 September 2014

There are many great reasons to use public transportation—convenience, cost, and concern for the environment are just a few; however, planning a bus trip to or from an unfamiliar place can present a number of challenges. Particularly for blind and low vision bus riders, finding a new bus stop can be difficult without prior information.

Torn white paper banner, casting soft shadow over white.

Strong Today, Falls Free Tomorrow

Published on 2 September 2014

Perhaps you remember exercise and nutrition expert Jack LaLanne, who was sometimes called the Godfather of Fitness. Do you remember watching his television shows in the 50s, 60s and 70s that featured him demonstrating exercises, while preaching the benefits of regular exercise and good diet? Not only were his programs aimed at younger men and women, he also coached the elderly and individuals with disabilities to not forgo exercise, believing it would enhance their strength.

Why You Should Wear Purple on June 15

Published on 2 June 2014

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is June 15. This year's theme is "One person. Once action. One Nation. United against elder abuse."

Falls: Not an Inevitable Consequence of Aging

Published on 30 April 2014

Do you know someone who has fallen? Or have you had a fall yourself? If so, this should come as no surprise. Falls occur commonly and are the leading cause of unintentional injury among people aged 65+. In fact, every year one in three adults aged 65 or older will suffer a fall. About one in five falls causes a moderate to severe injury—for example, a broken arm, leg, neck, or hip, and serious head injuries.

Medication Safety and Your Health

Published on 30 April 2014


Remember the time when you did not need to take any medications? Life certainly seemed simpler, at least for me! I used to jump out of bed and didn't need to concern myself with taking this medication with food, that medication on an empty stomach, etc.

Honk If You Hear Me! Three Tips on Hearing and Driving

Published on 30 April 2014

Honking horns, emergency vehicle sirens and engines: what do all of these sounds have in common? You need to hear all of them while driving. Safe driving relies on good vision and good hearing. Our ability to hear something before we see it helps us respond more quickly to potential danger.

Cooking Fire Safety for Older Adults

Published on 30 April 2014

In the U.S., cooking fires remain the most common type of home fires. Across the country, fire departments respond to over 100,000 cooking-related fires every year with countless more cooking fires unreported. The majority of cooking fires begin from food left unattended on the stove. While cooking fires happen to all people of all ages, older adults have a higher risk of injury from these and other common home fires.

CENTS Launches Project to Protect Washington Seniors

Published on 30 April 2014

Why did the infamous bank robber Willie Sutton rob banks? "That's where the money is," he said. Scammers who prey on senior citizens have the same mentality.

Lunch In the Nursing Home

Rallying to Become a Dementia-friendly Community

Published on 30 April 2014

It is not uncommon for people with dementia to face significant barriers, from engaging in social activities to navigating a neighborhood, or even a conversation with their healthcare provider. Without support or understanding of their condition, many shrug their shoulders in frustration and give up out of fear or feelings of being misunderstood. Some will isolate, lacking confidence and feeling they have nothing to contribute. Others reach out but may be met with no response or a disregard of their offer.

Conference for Caregivers: Tips & Tools for Daily Caregiving

Published on 31 January 2014

In Washington, more than 850,000 unpaid family caregivers are helping someone age 18+ to remain at home. Thousands of others serve as professional caregivers for elders and adults with disabilities in their communities. Paid or unpaid, this is important, meaningful and stressful work.

Older Driver Safety Highlighted in December

Published on 2 December 2013

Among the many health awareness observances we support, National Older Driver Safety Awareness rises to the top in December. The American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) leads the charge on National Older Driver Safety Awareness Week, which occurs December 2–6, 2013.

Highway sign - direction and exit sign

Why Transportation Advocacy is Important

Published on 1 October 2013

AARP Washington advocacy director Ingrid McDonald (Transportation for All—Keep Us Moving!) is clear and correct: "New investments should promote flexible transportation options that will help older people and people with disabilities stay mobile and engaged in their communities." And the priorities she outlines—public transit, special needs transportation, and complete streets—are good for people of all ages and all abilities, whether they use them or not.

Making It Easier to Leave Your Car at Home

Published on 1 October 2013

There comes a time when most people stop driving. Some drivers are forced to give up the keys due to physical limitations, like limited vision, or slow response that puts themselves and others at risk. With increasing frequency, drivers of all ages choose not to drive due to cost, comfort, convenience and/or concern for the environment.

Counter or Fridge? How to Keep your Produce Fresh

Published on 1 October 2013

Americans throw away an average of about $400 worth of spoiled produce a year. Following a few tips will ensure more fruits and vegetables go into you and your family than into the yard waste container. What a great way to save you money and improve your family’s health.

Too Good to Waste

Published on 1 October 2013

Did you know that Thursday, October 24 is Food Day? Every day is food day, of course, but this annual event, supported by a coalition of national and regional food-movement groups, is what they describe as "a nationwide celebration of healthy, affordable, and sustainably produced food."

Duct Tape and Maxi Pads to the Rescue

Published on 29 August 2013

Resourcefulness rules the day! We've all heard the adage, "Necessity is the mother of invention." That was certainly true in this case! You never know how simple, everyday items can be used when you’re in a pinch—or in a disaster.

When You're Prepared, Everyone Prospers!

Published on 29 August 2013

Even though we are reminded to be ready for power outages, hot weather, winter storms, and more by news media, flyers, and emergency management messages, many of us do not want to think about disasters. I think that "preparing to prosper" is a concept that we can all embrace.

Zumba Rhythms Motivate People to Keep Coming Back

Published on 28 June 2013

When Columbian aerobics instructor Alberto "Beto" Perez forgot his aerobics music tape one day, he made the best of it. His backpack held another tape—traditional salsa and merengue music popular in Columbia, which Perez had recorded off the radio—so he improvised. Following his moves, students loved the non-traditional workout and Perez knew he was on to something.

Hoarding: A Complex Issue Needing Community Support

Published on 1 February 2013

As the Renton Housing Authority Resident Services Coordinator, I have worked with residents that struggle with hoarding disorder; however, I felt uninformed about this issue.

Falls Prevention Efforts Succeed in South King County

Published on 2 January 2013

The results are in for the Aging and Disability Services (ADS) falls prevention project that began last April. ADS received a mini-grant from the Washington State Department of Health to pilot test strategies outlined in a draft Falls Prevention Toolkit.

Food Safety Tips for a Healthy Holiday Season

Published on 28 November 2012

The holidays are just around the corner and whether you intend to cook for your friends and family, bring foods to a holiday party, or donate foods to meal programs or food banks, be sure to protect food from germs that cause foodborne illness.

Service Dogs: Are They for Real?

Published on 1 November 2012

We've all seen people in public places who are accompanied by dogs that they claim are service dogs. Like us, you may have questioned the legitimacy of some of these dogs. We would like to share both practical and personal information about service dogs.

Don't Fall This Fall...Or Any Other Time, If You Can Help It

Published on 30 August 2012

Falls are a significant hazard to our health, which is why we promote public awareness about how to prevent and reduce falls among older adults.

Falls—Predictable and Preventable

Published on 30 August 2012

Falls—often predictable and preventable—are not part of the normal aging process. Rather, they are due to underlying physical illnesses (e.g., arthritis, muscle weakness, depression), medications, and environmental hazards (such as carpets, slippery floors, pets, and clutter) often in conjunction.

Make Sure Your Home Can Change As You Do

Published on 30 August 2012

Home sweet home! No one expects a simple turn of events or our changing lives to suddenly make our home sweet home become a barrier to our comfort and peace of mind. Unfortunately that is typically what can happen if we are not aware of the possibility of change and if we're not prepared to deal with it. 

Reviewing Your Meds Can Reduce Your Risk of Falling

Published on 30 August 2012

As we age, our risk of falling increases. This is no surprise to anyone but more of us are living to an old age and the number of elderly people falling is growing.

King County Rallies to Prevent Falls

Published on 30 August 2012

During an eight-week course taught by two trained coaches, A Matter of Balance participants identify "fall-ty" habits, correct hazards in the home, and gain confidence to become more active with support from a group of peers. 

Today Hank lives a healthy, more independent life in our community and no longer requires emergency assistance through the 911 system.

Fire Department Connects Residents to Health Care and Human Services

Published on 29 June 2012

Hank suffered a stroke nearly 40 years ago and has lived with side effects from that stroke ever since. He moved into an independent senior housing apartment complex in Kent, Washington. Due to balance issues and declining strength and mobility that were not being properly addressed, Hank frequently required the assistance of 911 crews.

Disaster Ready...What Does That Mean?

Published on 29 June 2012

If a disaster such as an earthquake were to happen tomorrow, would you be ready to take care of yourself and those around you till help can arrive and City services can be restored?

Who Can You Count On in an Emergency? Who Can Count on You?

Published on 29 June 2012

Can you count on your Facebook friends in an emergency? Perhaps so, says the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), in announcing the winners of their Facebook Lifeline Application Challenge last spring. 

Health Care Reform a High AAA Priority

Published on 31 May 2012

Area Agencies on Aging ("triple As," as they're sometimes called) have long contributed to health care efficiencies and effectiveness.

Universal Design Goes Beyond the Home

Published on 29 February 2012

Have you ever watched a captioned television at an airport? Were you thankful for the curb cut when pushing your baby stroller up a sidewalk? Did you appreciate the automatic door opener at the grocery store? These are all examples of "universal design."