“Health for the Ages & Stages” (continued) Dr. Ashley said NAD has been used since the 1950s to help thousands of individuals free themselves of multiple addictions, including alcoholism, and patients were able to kick their addictions without the agony of intense withdrawal or the incessant cravings that are the primary cause of relapse. For more about NAD, Healthy Living Liberty Lake or Family Medicine Liberty Lake, see ad on page 63.
HERE’S THE LIKELY REASON — AND WHAT TO DO ABOUT IT Itchy, burning, red or watery eyes? You may suffer from dry eye (medically known as ocular surface disease), an increasingly common condition for patients of all ages. “Twenty years ago, dry eye used to be, except for a few rare cases, reserved for the ‘over-50’ crowd,” said Dr. Michelle Darnell, owner of Lilac Family Eye Care in Liberty Lake. “Today, we are seeing moderate and severe dry eye in younger and younger patients. I had a 10-year-old once who had such bad dry eye it was affecting his vision.” So why so many more cases, and so many more young people impacted? “Most researchers believe that the reason we are seeing dry eye in younger and younger generations is due to the increased amount of screen time that children, and people in general, are seeing today,” Dr. Darnell said, explaining research has shown we blink 1/3 to ¼ the amount of tears when staring at a device. “Not only does this cause the eye to start to dry out, but it also means all of that unused oil that should have been blinked out sits and congeals in the oil glands on the eyelids,” Dr. Darnell said. “Eventually, that oil will clog up our glands, causing damage and eventually gland death.”
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Dr. Darnell said the first recommended treatment is to limit screen time. Understanding some jobs require hours behind a screen, she also commonly works with patients to open up clogged oil glands and stimulate them to produce more oil. This treatment often includes a 10-minute “eye spa” using a heated silicone bead mask, after which she teaches patients how to properly squeeze out old oils, opening up the oil glands in the upper and lower lids. She also recommends high-quality fish oil to stimulate oil production in the eyes. She emphasizes that patients should work with an eye care professional in order to ensure the appropriate techniques, dosages and brands are used. After all, Dr. Darnell said no two patients are the same, and she takes care to customize treatments to each individual situation. “Many times, especially in people with mild ocular surface disease, the daily eye spa and quality fish oil are enough to bring relief and get their eyes comfortable,” she said. “In those patients with more advanced dry eye, we may need to get a little more aggressive in our treatment to find long-term relief.” For more on Lilac Family Eye Care, see ad on page 67.
THREE FOCUSES FOR MAXIMIZING YOUR EXERCISE Evergreen Fountains was designed with active seniors in mind. From the vast amenities in the Wellness Center to the programs, classes and assessments provided for seniors at all levels of fitness, it’s no wonder Evergreen Fountains bills itself as a place where “wellness is a way of life.” As they look to provide continuity of care for seniors, the staff at Evergreen Fountains emphasizes three components for evidencebased senior exercise, which they
adapt to each individual’s specific health needs. AQUATIC EXERCISE Whether this is water walking, buddy swim, water aerobics or some other feature of the warmwater, 88-degree pool, Evergreen Fountains offers proven aquatic options that benefit seniors. Not only is water exercise easier on joints and reduces the risk of injury, the pool can benefit all types of targeted health benefits, from strengthening heart muscles to improving balance and coordination. BALANCE Speaking of balance, that is an area of specific emphasis at Evergreen Fountains, both in and outside of the pool. From programs like Yoga Stretch, which focuses on strengthening the body’s core, to many other programs that are customized based upon individual assessments, the experts at Evergreen Fountains can help. STRENGTH TRAINING From weights and resistance bands to just working on resistance with a trainer, two to three such workouts a week help prevent the loss of bone mass and improves balance. This type of training is proven to help seniors avoid falls and broken bones. Evergreen Fountains boasts a variety of activities led by an experienced wellness director and personal trainer. Residents utilize a state-ofthe-art Wellness and Fitness Center equipped with a swimming pool, therapy spa and complete fitness equipment specifically designed for seniors. “There’s a reason so many active seniors choose Evergreen Fountains,” said Leasing Director Gene Arger. “Our residents believe in living well, and we provide the amenities to help them achieve their personal wellness and fitness goals. We have a great team to provide assessments and programs customized to each resident. And it’s such a fun atmosphere. Our goal is for residents to regain their independence.” For more about Evergreen Fountains, see ad on page 48.