600g premature baby beat the odds thanks to you

Over60 NZ native article for Wellington Hospitals Foundation

Four months ago, the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Wellington Children’s Hospital received an urgent call for help. A Wairarapa woman, just 24 weeks into her pregnancy, was bleeding heavily and required an emergency caesarean. Since Wairarapa Hospital is not able to adequately tend to such a premature delivery, it was down to the Wellington Hospital’s flight team to reach the mother and save her baby’s life.

Funded by generous donations by people like you, Wellington Children’s Hospitals Neonatal Transport system emulates the environment of a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. It was able to monitor and adjust the tiny, 600-gram baby’s temperature, heart rate, blood pressure, respiratory rate, arterial blood gases, expiratory CO2 levels and oxygen saturation levels throughout the life-saving journey to hospital.

Upon landing at Wellington Regional Children’s Hospital, the transport incubator was wheeled straight into the neonatal unit. Thanks to this cutting-edge piece of equipment and specialist Neonatal Doctors and Nurses, the baby, despite arriving 16 weeks early, survived.

It’s because of these specialised services that extremely premature babies have greatly increased chances of survival. And, while Wellington Children’s Hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit is considered to be one of the best in Australasia, demand is increasing.

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Signs your ageing loved one needs assistance

Do you suspect your ageing parent, partner or other loved one might need professional care? Have you tried to broach the subject only to find they flat-out refuse to talk about it? Many people will find themselves in this precarious situation as their loved ones grow older, and while it can often seem impossible to find a solution, there are ways to go about it.

We spoke to Peter Scutt, Founder and CEO of Better Caring, a website where people who are ageing can find and directly hire care and support workers directly, about what to look out for and what to do if a loved one’s behaviour indicates they need assistance.

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Over60 community reveal the unexpected perks of retirement

Over60 native article for AustralianSuper

The prospect of leaving your career after decades of hard work can be a daunting one, but we’re here to show you why retirement is the beginning, not the end. From travelling and relaxing, to volunteering and bonding with loved ones, there are so many incredible reasons why retirement can be truly amazing.

We asked the Over60 community to share the most surprising perks of retirement. Here’s what you said was the best part of this exciting new chapter of life.

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6 new year’s resolutions that are extremely achievable

Over60 native article for AustralianSuper

A new year, a new you. That’s what we tell ourselves year after year, but do we ever actually stick to our new year’s resolutions? According to a survey by Finder.com.au, 58 per cent of Australians broke their resolutions. Interestingly, 37 per cent broke their resolution within just three months of the new year!

While there are many reasons for breaking a new year’s resolution – such as failing to keep track of progress or just downright forgetting about it – one of the most common mistakes people make is setting themselves a goal that is completely unrealistic.

So, to help you figure out what it is you want to achieve this year, we’ve got six new year’s resolutions that are not only simple but can make a big impact on your happiness.

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A quick guide to dentures

Over60 native article for Polident

Getting dentures – whether partial, complete, or temporary – can be incredibly freeing and confidence-boosting.

If you’re about to get dentures, or have already lived with them for years and simply want to pick up some new tips for their care, we’ve got a great guide to fitting, cleaning, storing and adapting to your dentures – and, most importantly, living comfortably with them.

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A pet could be the secret to happiness in retirement

Over60 native article for AustralianSuper

Anyone who grew up with a pet – or owns one today – will vouch for what an amazing addition they can make to the family. From encouraging us to get active to simply providing some much-appreciated love and company, furry friends can have a multitude of positive impacts on our lives – especially in retirement.

Sixty-five-year-old Over60 community member Barbara Easthope is one of many Australians who are reaping the rewards of pet ownership in retirement. In the time after making the sea change from Canberra to South Australia’s Copper Coast, Barbara and her husband sadly lost their two dogs and cats.

“We decided no more animals,” she explains. “They were a burden, an expense, and we didn’t want the pain of having to have ailing animals put down, and we were going to travel.”

However, she and her husband found that travelling – and caravanning in particular – wasn’t for them, and soon returned home and began considering the possibility of getting another pet.

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Simple trick to make you want to exercise

Over60 native article for Nature’s Own

Did you know that being physically active can actually give you a greater sense of purpose in life? That’s what a recent report, published in the Journal of Health Psychology, found. Unfortunately, many of us are still missing out on the countless benefits of regular physical activity.

And while we all know exercise is good for us, let’s face it – finding the motivation can be a real struggle. Beach holidays and weddings might be enough to encourage us to hit the treadmill in an effort to shift a few kilos and look our best, but unfortunately, these bursts of inspiration tend to be rather short-lived. So, how do you find motivation and make it stick?

The answer is simple – find something you love. You’re not alone if you tend to associate the word “exercise” with physically draining (and, for some people, downright unappealing) activities like running and weightlifting. However, exercise can be whatever you make it, and if you find something you enjoy doing, you won’t even need to “trick” yourself into doing it.

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Number one reason your health deteriorates as you age

Over60 native article for Nature’s Own

They say with age comes wisdom, happiness and experience, but unfortunately, that’s not all it brings. Our health naturally declines as we get older for the simple fact that our immune systems aren’t as strong and we’re more prone to age-related diseases. However, while we can blame some health issues on our age, it’s time to accept some of the responsibility, and surprisingly, a lack of regular exercise is the main reason our health deteriorates with time.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, just a quarter of adults over the age of 65 get their recommended minimum of 30 minutes of exercise each day. Furthermore, just one in ten of us are doing enough to gain any benefit to our cardiovascular health. This is particularly bad news for ageing Australians, as there are numerous health issues contributed to by inactivity, such as:

  • Reduced muscle mass and bone strength
  • Lower coordination and balance
  • Less flexibility and mobility
  • Higher risk of mental health problems (e.g. depression, anxiety)
  • Higher risk of obesity, heart disease and stroke

While exercise is undoubtedly essential for all ages, it should be a priority for over-60s in order to maintain independence in old age, reduce the risk of disease and improve recovery time should we find ourselves sick or injured. Thankfully, it’s never too late to kick yourself into gear.

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5 of the best free events at the Victorian Seniors Festival

Over60 native article for Victorian Seniors Festival

One of Australia’s biggest festivals for over-60s, the Victorian Seniors Festival, is back for its 34th year, and it’s bigger and better than ever. Throughout the month of October, over 1,500 events will take place across Victoria in celebration of the wonderful contributions older Victorians make to the community. Victorian Seniors Card holders will also be treated to eight days of free public transport between October 2 and 9, so you can get out and explore all that this great festival has to offer without worrying about your wallet.

Here are five fantastic events you simply can’t miss. The best bit? They’re all free.

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Noni Hazlehurst interview

In 2016, off the back of her incredible Logies Hall of Fame speech, I was lucky enough to chat with beloved Aussie actress Noni Hazlehurst about all things ageing, A Place to Call Home and her stellar career.

Australian television legend Noni Hazlehurst has been a fixture on our screens for over 40 years, and she’s set to return with season four of Foxtel’s popular period drama A Place to Call Home. Over60 spoke to Noni about what’s next for her character, Elizabeth Bligh, her future career plans, and that incredible speech at this year’s Logie Awards.

You gave a very powerful speech at this year’s Logie Awards, and it’s quite sad that you’re only the second woman to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. In your speech you called it a “reflection of the prevailing zeitgeist.” How do you think that zeitgeist is changing in terms of gender equality, cultural diversity?

Oh, I just don’t think it should even be a thing. Marriage equality, any kind of equality, it’s just like, why is it not there? And I think the backlash now of people digging their heels in and saying “no, we don’t want change, it’s going to ruin everything,” I just think, what are you so afraid of? What are we afraid of that we think somehow our lives are going to be compromised if other people have equality? I just don’t get that.

I’m very much in favour of putting out the message that, as human beings, we share more similarities than differences. We’re just people, struggling with our day-to-day existence on some level or other. It doesn’t matter if you’re female, black, white, brindle, old, young, you know. We need to look after each other a bit better.

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