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$44M USF Partnership With Lakeland Center For Brain Research – Patch.com

LAKELAND, FL A five-year $44 million grant has been awarded to the University of South Florida in its partnership with Lakeland's Reliance Medical Centers for the Preventing Alzheimer's with Cognitive Training (PACT) study, a news release said.

The research will examine how computerized brain games might maintain or enhance cognition with aging and reducing the risk of dementia, officials said. Eventually, the study will expand nationwide. The grant was awarded recently by the National Institutes of Health.

USF and Reliance are in need of local volunteers for the study. Participants will be required to initially come two times for in-person study visits. The remainder of the computerized training exercises will be conducted in the comfort of their own home or office. Participants mst be 65 or older with no signs of cognitive impairment or dementia.

Reliance's Lakeland and Winter Haven locations are the two sites for the study. The donated space will be known as the USF-Reliance Optimal Aging Research Laboratory at Reliance Medical Centers.

"Reliance is proud to partner with the renowned team at USF and provide increased accessibility beyond its university sites, allowing more local seniors to access, participate and ultimately benefit directly from brain health research," Roberto Martinez, co-CEO & co-founder of Reliance Medical Centers, said. "We are honored to serve as two of the sites for this ground-breaking study and look forward to furthering our mission to improve quality of life for our seniors everywhere."

Jennifer Lister, Ph.D., PACT study co-investigator and associate dean at the USF College of Behavioral and Community Sciences, said the overarching goal of their work is to promote healthy aging with a focus on brain health. Their mission is to discover and define early markers of dementia to improve prevention and risk reduction.

For more information, or to volunteer, visit http://www.pactstudy.org or call 813-974-6703.

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$44M USF Partnership With Lakeland Center For Brain Research - Patch.com

LearningRx Explains the Benefits of 1-on-1 Brain Training for Children on the Autism Spectrum – PRNewswire

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo., April 13, 2021 /PRNewswire/ --April is Autism Acceptance Month (previously referred to as "Autism Awareness Month"), and LearningRx (www.LearningRx.com), the world's largest 1-on-1 brain training company, is explaining the potential benefits of its programs for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

"When we think of children on the autism spectrum, we usually imagine their struggles with communication and social skills, making eye contact, and adapting to change," explains Dr. Amy Moore, a cognitive psychologist with LearningRx and VP of Research at Gibson Institute of Cognitive Research. "It's largely the behavioral manifestations of ASD that drive parents to search for an intervention. But behaviors are influenced by the brain's executive function skills, skills like memory, planning, attention, and reasoning. These cognitive skills are frequently deficient in children on the autism spectrum, so it's critical that interventions target not just the behavioral outcomes of those deficits but the cognitive deficits themselves."

On the initial visit to LearningRx, clients with an autism diagnosis undergoes a Brain Skills Assessment to identify which brain skills are weak. Once those skills are identified, they can be targeted with intensive personal brain training. Unlike digital brain games, one-on-one brain training uses customized exercises and incorporates immediate feedback, intensity, and loading, among other features, to work on cognitive skills.

"We examined the cognitive profiles of 935 children on the autism spectrum and found the greatest deficits in long-term memory, working memory, sustained attention, and processing speed," says Moore. "When we tested the same children after 90 hours of intense, human-delivered brain training, we found statistically significant changes in every cognitive skill measured. They averaged a 3.2-year gain and an 11-point increase in overall IQ score. That's an exciting outcome for a condition that can seem so resistant to improvement. There's no cure for ASDand we don't make any promises about any intervention's successbut we have seen the positive impact of brain training for kids on the autism spectrum and we're so excited about the future of brain training research for these children."

If your child has a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder, contact your local LearningRx Brain Training Center (www.learningrx.com) to schedule a Cognitive Skills Assessment today. The results of the initial assessment can provide valuable insight into which brain skills are weak and how best to target and train those skills.

About LearningRxLearningRx is the largest one-on-one brain training company in the world. Their training programs are delivered through more than 200 locations in North America and in 48 countries around the globe. LearningRx has helped more than 100,000 individuals and families sharpen their cognitive skills to help them think faster, learn easier, and perform better.LearningRx's methods have been used in clinical settings for over 35 years and have been subjected to peer-review in more than a dozen scientific journals. To learn more, visithttps://www.learningrx.com

Media Contact:Dr. Amy Moore, Cognitive PsychologistLearningRx World Headquarters [emailprotected] (719)213-1052

SOURCE LearningRx Brain Training

https://www.learningrx.com

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LearningRx Explains the Benefits of 1-on-1 Brain Training for Children on the Autism Spectrum - PRNewswire

Will Your Dog Be the Smartest at the Park? PetSmart’s Brain Games Training Course Can Help – PRNewswire

Building on months of research, Brain Games was developed by PetSmart's internal team of training experts who developed researched-backed ways to help keep dogs mentally stimulated as a way to lessen hyperactivity and boredom. Through the class, dogs can be taught to read cue cards, choose colors and learn the names of their toys. But it's about more than just cool tricks.

"Mental stimulation is key to creating a happier, well-balanced, and confident dog," said Jodie Havens, CPDT-KSA, PetSmart's training expert. "The course helps pet parents understand their dogs' perspective of the world and devise strategies to help their dogs succeed.Our goal is to give pet parents the tools they need to ensure their dog is emotionally, physically and mentally satisfied, while improving communication and building trust."

The six-week course incorporates all kinds of games and skills to help build that trust and communication, including dog reading, where a dog can learn to associate a written word with a cue, and object recognition, where dogs can learn to identify toys by name. By teaching a dog these skills, pet parents are giving them new ways to communicate their preference and promote teaching the dog to make their own choices.

"We're all spending more time at home these days, and a lot of people are wondering how they can build stronger bonds with their pets," said Havens. "Brain Games is a great option because it focuses on the mental stimulation needed for a happier, well-balanced, and confident dog. It can help overcome boredom and expands the relationship beyond the daily walk to a lifetime of communication and trust."

Brain Games is one of seven courses offered at PetSmart led by accredited trainers, who utilize positive reinforcement techniques in both group and private settings. Prior to signing up for Brain Games, dogs must first complete puppy or beginning training and intermediate training or have a similar skill set. PetSmart trainers can provide a free, 15-minute evaluation to determine eligibility for pet parents interested in enrolling their dog.

PetSmart offers the Brain Games training course at all PetSmart stores offering training.For more information on Brain Games, eligibility and other services, visithttps://services.petsmart.com/training

About PetSmartPetSmart LLC is the largest specialty pet retailer of services and solutions for the lifetime needs of pets. At PetSmart, we love pets, and we believe pets make us better people. Every day with every connection, PetSmart's passionate associates help bring pet parents closer to their pets so they, together, can live more fulfilled lives. This vision impacts everything we do for our customers, the way we support our associates and how we give back to our communities.

PetSmart operates approximately 1,650 pet stores inthe United States,CanadaandPuerto Rico, as well as more than 200 in-store PetSmart PetsHotel dog and cat boarding facilities. The retailer provides a broad range of competitively priced pet food and products, as well as services such as dog training, pet grooming, pet boarding, PetSmart Doggie Day Camp and pet adoption.

PetSmart, PetSmart Charities and PetSmart Charities ofCanadawork with nearly 4,000 animal welfare organizations to bring adoptable pets into stores so they have the best chance possible of finding a forever home. Through this in-store adoption program and other signature events, PetSmart has facilitated more than 9 million adoptions, more than any other brick-and-mortar organization.

SOURCE PetSmart

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Will Your Dog Be the Smartest at the Park? PetSmart's Brain Games Training Course Can Help - PRNewswire

How Isolation Can Affect Cognitive Function – Behavioral Health, Featured, Health Topics – Hackensack Meridian Health

March 30, 2021Clinical Contributors to this Story

Elizabeth Kera, PhD contributes to topics such as Psychology.

Since the start of the pandemic, many people are now working from home, caring for children, learning online and having reduced contact with extended family and friends.

This social isolation and lack of stimulation can cause significant stress, leading to depression and problems with cognitive functioning or mental processes such as perception, memory, processing information, reasoning and judgment. And because the pandemic is not a usual situation, many people may not be able to use their normal coping strategies.

Were seeing an increase in patients who are reporting problems with memory, shorter attention span, difficulty concentrating and trouble articulating their thoughts, said Elizabeth Kera, PhD, neuropsychologist and division director of Psychology at the Hackensack University Medical Center Neuroscience Institute.

According to Dr. Kera, anyone can experience cognitive decline during times of stress. However, people who are older or living with a neurological illness or mood disorder are more vulnerable.

But the good news is that there are a few things you can do to prevent and treat problems with cognitive functioning, including:

You might think that habits such as getting restorative sleep, consuming a balanced diet and exercising regularly only support physical health, but the truth is that these practices support cognitive health, too.

Trouble sleeping due to stress or anxiety, a more sedentary lifestyle, or a fear of going to the grocery store may make it more difficult for people to maintain physical health during this time, said Dr. Kera. However, its important to find alternative ways to care for physical needs to promote cognitive health.

A few suggestions include reducing stress using mindfulness or meditation, starting a home exercise program, or getting fresh, healthy foods through grocery delivery.

Dr. Kera said exercise is especially critical because it stimulates the production of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a protein that prevents neurodegeneration. Hormones released during exercise also promote neuroplasticity, enabling the brain to adapt to new circumstances and experiences.

If you are missing interaction with others, it may be necessary to create a schedule to check in with friends and family members.

Staying connected via Skype or over the phone, or playing games together online, can boost physical, cognitive, and mental health, said Dr. Kera.

Challenging your brain with card games, strategy games and word puzzles can improve cognitive functioning. There are even websites that are exclusively devoted to brain games.

Just as you need to exercise your physical body to stay healthy and strong, you also need to exercise your brain, said Dr. Kera. During these unprecedented times, you may need to step outside the box to maintain physical, mental and cognitive health.

Dr. Kera said that people should seek help for pandemic-related cognitive decline if they notice any change in their level of functioning.

If you misplace your keys and cant find them, it may not be a big concern. But if you are noticing a pattern of missing appointments, making mistakes at work, having trouble remembering to pay your bills or having persistent difficulty with tasks that you never struggled with before, you should see a health care provider, said Dr. Kera.

Sometimes, people who are struggling at home, at work, or in their relationships may also be dealing with depression or anxiety, which can make the problem worse. They should seek professional treatment.

According to Dr. Kera, preventing and treating pandemic-related cognitive decline requires a multifaceted approach.

If you only focus on one aspect of treatment or prevention, the problem may not improve, said Dr. Kera. If you see a professional, and identify areas of weakness, there are more formalized treatments that can help. Cognitive rehabilitation therapy can benefit certain individuals experiencing cognitive decline, particularly those who have a neurological illness.

Because we live in an age of technology, Dr. Kera stressed that help is more accessible than ever.

Health professionals are now offering telehealth visits, and there are treatment programs and support groups that can provide people with virtual avenues for cognitive and social stimulation, said Dr. Kera. If youve been having symptoms of cognitive decline and they arent getting better, it is important to seek the help. Many people are scared to do so because of the pandemic, but it is more important than ever before to pay attention to these symptoms.

Dr. Brian Amorello is a counseling psychologist at the Neuroscience Institute.. He adds that one of the additional benefits to Dr. Keras suggestion is that all would improve our overall mental health as well. Since the pandemic began, theres been an increase in overall depression, anxiety, and stress. This is likely due to us not being able to see loved ones in person and be in places we enjoy. Activities such as virtual gatherings, meditation, and exercise provide us with the necessary behavioral activation not only to strengthen cognitive function, but also improve our overall mood.

The material provided through HealthU is intended to be used as general information only and should not replace the advice of your physician. Always consult your physician for individual care.

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How Isolation Can Affect Cognitive Function - Behavioral Health, Featured, Health Topics - Hackensack Meridian Health

Senior Centre Without Walls schedule for end of February features plenty of interesting topics – moosejawtoday.com

From working with dogs to piano music to homemade vintage toys, interesting events abound for phone-in program

As it turns out, things have grown exponentially in the time since.

Around 42 seniors frm throughout the province are now regular users of the program, which is all run through phone calls not dissimilar to the old party-line systems of yesteryear. And theyre receiving the kind of programming that generates all sorts of interest, with the slate of calls for the final two weeks of the month covering a wide gamut of interesting topics -- from working with dogs to old-time toys and regular trivia sessions, its all led to rapid growth in popularity for the program.

People have been saying theyre really enjoying it, its helping their mental health especially with everything thats going on, said Ronda Wedhorn with the SWCC.

The best part of it all? Its all completely free.

Every speaker who takes part is a volunteer, and even when the Moose Jaw Museum and Art Gallery gets involved and holds craft sessions, supplies are sent out to participants so they can follow along.

Thats all because of a handful of grants the SWCC has received and continue to seek, as well as a generous donation from the SaskTel Pioneers. If they continue to grow as much as they have, theyre hoping to eventually become a self-sufficient entity with a permanent position running the whole thing, says Wedhorn.

Regardless, the SWCC plans to continue to offer their non-profit services as long as they can, especially with so many folks enjoying what they have to offer.

Below is a list of topics for the coming days and weeks. To join up and for more information, call (306) 631-4357, e-mail swwsask@sasktel.net or visit their website at http://www.scwwmoosejaw.com.

Dog Behaviours, Derek Snow from No Dog Left Behind

Snow will talk about dog behaviours and give information about dogs and why that act as they do. Have you always wondered why your dog did something that way? Bring your questions to class.

Old Time Country Piano Music

Join musician Lorne Jackson as he plays a variety of Old-Time Country music from years past. Songs that our parents and grandparents (as well as some of us) grew up listening to. Find a sunny warm place in your home. Make a cup of tea. Settle in a comfy chair with a warm blanket, and spend the hour relaxing and listening to the piano. Feel free to sing along!

Fact or Fiction!

Join Myrna as she tells you a strange and interesting story and you tell her do you think Myrna is telling the facts or is it fiction?

Toys and Past Times

Karla Rasmussen, Education and Public Progra.m.s Coordinator with the Western Development Museum will offer tales from before the times of mass production and store-bought toys and how many young people made their own fun from items found around the house. We will look at how people enjoyed playing and staying active during Saskatchewan's settlement period and beyond. Reminisce and remember about a time when riding bicycles, shooting marbles and playing hopscotch were more popular than television and video games.

Stories of Your Life

A continuation of the stories we can write about our lives. With Anne Patton. Bring your homework to class and paper and pen.

Wednesday, Feb. 24 10:30 a.m.

Brain Games with Donna Kostal

Donna is back to do some trivia with us and keep our mind active!

Thursday, Feb. 25 10:30 a.m.

Osteoporosis Information

Join the Osteoporosis society as they give us information. Osteoporosis is a disease characterized by low bone mass and deterioration of bone tissue, which can lead to increased risk of fracture. Known as the silent thief, bone deterioration can occur over a number of years without presenting any symptoms. Unfortunately, if detected at the time of a break, the disease is already fairly advanced. The most common fractures associated with osteoporosis are in the hip, spine, wrist, and shoulder. Today, no single cause for osteoporosis has been identified.

Friday, Feb. 26 10:30 a.m.

Old Time Country Piano Music

Join Lorne Jackson as he plays a variety of old-time country music from years past.

Friday, Feb. 26 1:00 p.m.

Coffee Chat Visit for 30 minutes and then Card Bingo for 30 minutes.

Join Myrna as she picks the topic and we spend an hour of positive uplifting conversation and laughter!

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Senior Centre Without Walls schedule for end of February features plenty of interesting topics - moosejawtoday.com

Dog Theft: Here’s how help protect your dog from being stolen – Pontefract and Castleford Express

But its a good idea to keep things in perspective. Yes, in the current Covid climate, dogs are at a premium and there has most definitely been a rise in dog theft. However, while the numbers are increasing, they still remain relatively low.

Still, it never hurts to take stock and ask yourself if youre doing all you can to keep you and your dog safe.

Dogs for Good, who help people with disabilities through the power of expertly trained dogs. has put together some things to consider to reduce the likelihood of your dog being taken and also to keep yourself safe.

Keeping eyes on your dog is still the best thing you can do to keep him or her safe. Using your phone to catch up with calls/emails when youre out and about with your dog is a huge distraction and thieves know that. Keep your phone in your pocket and those four legs in focus.

Garden access. Is your garden secure? Did you lock the gate? Its always worth checking. And as before, keep an eye on your dog when theyre outside.

Dont leave your dog outside shops. Our dogs are so precious and can be taken in a heartbeat. You wouldnt leave your wallet or handbag unattended so dont leave your dog alone.

Tinted car windows. A relatively cheap way to keep whats in your car less visible to prying eyes.

Keep your dog building side. Where possible, try and keep your dog away from the side of the road when youre out on a walk. Doing so will make it far more difficult for someone to open a car door, take your dog and drive off.

Poor recall remember Fenton? If your dog has poor recall, social walks, on the lead around your local area is fine. Give your dog plenty of opportunities to engage with whats important to them sniffing, looking around etc. - and theyll feel the benefit. You can further add to their enrichment quota by spending time playing some brain games with them at home.

Safer spaces. Scope out some safer, free-run locations where youve got clear sight of your dog. Avoid wooded areas and keep to smaller open spaces where you can see all around you and your dog. You could also research private free run fields where you can book a slot and safely run your dog.

High-value food rewards. Small pieces of chicken, cheese or whatever your dog finds utterly delicious are a good way to ensure that your dog is motivated to come back to you.

Extendable leads. Used correctly, extendable leads are a good halfway house between a lead walk and a free run. Make sure you give your dog ten minutes or so at the start of the walk to interact with their environment by opening up the lead so they can shake off the cobwebs and explore safely. If you do this at the beginning of the walk, theyll be happier to walk on a shorter lead for the rest of the walk.

Be less predictable. Try altering your route and, where practical, the time you walk your dog.

Walk with someone else. Even with the current restrictions, you can still take a walk with someone else as long as you keep a safe distance apart.

Photos. Make sure youve got plenty of recent photos of your dog clearly showing identifiable markings etc.

Microchips. Make sure your dog has been chipped and that you keep any changes to your details updated with the database. Also, because chips can move, its a good idea to ask your vet to scan your dog annually to check where the chip is.

If the unthinkable happens and your dog is taken, remember, you are not alone. There are plenty of online groups and pages offering help, guidance and support. DogLost is a charity which provides a lost and found service which is free of charge. You should also notify police, dog wardens, vets and local rescue centres.

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Dog Theft: Here's how help protect your dog from being stolen - Pontefract and Castleford Express

Stay sharp as you age in Park Slope with Touching Hearts NYC – PRUnderground

In Park Slope, Brooklyn, NY, seniors stay mentally and physically active and eat well to maintain cognitive skills with the help of home caregivers from Touching Hearts at Home NYC.

What is the best way to keep your brain healthy as you age? A big part of the answer is to switch off the TV, get busy and seek food for thought (and palate).

According to recent reports published by Harvard Medical School and webmd.com, the right moves to keep your mind sharp as you age, are a combination of physical activity, healthy habits, and using your brain.

These are sometimes easier said than done for Brooklyns Park Slope seniors who might not be so steady on their feet or feel inspired to seek cognitive stimulation. And thats where Touching Hearts NYC caregivers step in with a watchful eye during physical activity and strategies for older adults to keep mentally stimulated as well as help in the kitchen with preparing healthy food.

The Park Slope senior-home-care agency can match elderly or infirm folks with a trained caregiver who will accompany a person in their care during trips outside for exercise. Quite apart from the safety aspect of having a caregiver ensure all is well while youre going through your paces, a bonus is having some company for the duration and on the trip back home.

When it comes to cognitive stimulation for seniors, caregivers training comes into play with activities that might include simple conversation, brain games, help with hobbies and crafts, or whatever appeals to the client and is within reason.

Not all experts will commit to the view that games, puzzles, hobbies and activities are certain to improve cognitive ability in the elderly, but Dr Alan Gow of the United Kingdoms Heriot-Watt University concluded from a recent study that you should continue with those you enjoy and taking up new activities is likely to be beneficial.

We cant say for certain which activities might definitely help keep your thinking skills sharp, but doing hobbies and activities that we enjoy is important for quality of life and well-being anyway, the associate professor in psychology advised.

The Harvard Medical School report mentions eating a Mediterranean-style diet as part of the strategy for keeping your brain healthy as you age. Thats good for your physical health too, of course, but lets not overlook the mental-stimulation possibilities of Touching Hearts NYC caregivers meal-preparation service.

If a senior likes cooking, just follow Dr Gows advice. Meal preparation can be a joint effort in the kitchen along with the caregiver, and a senior might just have some of their own ideas and techniques for turning out brain food.

Touching Hearts NYC offers a full range of home-care services for the elderly, infirm, and disabled in Park Slope, Brooklyn, and throughout the New York City area. From 24-hour in-home senior care to just a few hours a week, all services can be tailored to a clients needs and means through discussion via an obligation-free consultation.

About Touching Hearts at Home NYC Area

About Touching Hearts at Home NYC Area Touching Hearts NYC offers in-home care to aging adults, seniors, and individuals living with medical conditions and disabilities at rates considerably more affordable than care outside the home. The agency is known for Non-Medical Home Care, Companionship and Homemaker services in New York Citys Manhattan, Brooklyn, Westchester, Queens, and Rockland areas. Its focus is on providing person-centered care to help those in need remain in their home, maintain the lifestyle they choose, and feel confident they will be treated with the respect and kindness they deserve.

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Stay sharp as you age in Park Slope with Touching Hearts NYC - PRUnderground

Keep your dog safely tucked up and away from thieves – JohnOGroat Journal

In the current Covid climate, dogs are at a premium and unfortunately a major rise in theft of family pets has been reported.

While the numbers are increasing, charity Dogs for Good aims to help owners keep their four-legged friends safe.

The charity has put together a list of advice to help owners and dogs stay together.

Keeping eyes on your dog is still the best thing you can do to keep him or her safe. Using your phone to catch up with calls/emails when youre out and about with your dog is a huge distraction and thieves know that. Keep your phone in your pocket and those four legs in focus.

Garden access. Is your garden secure? Did you lock the gate? Its always worth checking. And as before, keep an eye on your dog when theyre outside.

Dont leave your dog outside shops. Our dogs are so precious and can be taken in a heartbeat. You wouldnt leave your wallet or handbag unattended so dont leave your dog alone.

Tinted car windows. A relatively cheap way to keep whats in your car less visible to prying eyes.

Keep your dog "building side". Where possible, try and keep your dog away from the side of the road when youre out on a walk. Doing so will make it far more difficult for someone to open a car door, take your dog and drive off.

Poor recall remember Fenton? If your dog has poor recall, social walks on the lead around your local area is fine. Give your dog plenty of opportunities to engage with whats important to them sniffing, looking around and suchlike and theyll feel the benefit. You can further add to their enrichment quota by spending time playing some brain games with them at home.

Safer spaces. Scope out some safer, free-run locations where youve got clear sight of your dog. Avoid wooded areas and keep to smaller open spaces where you can see all around you and your dog. You could also research private free-run fields where you can book a slot and safely run your dog.

High-value food rewards. Small pieces of chicken, cheese or whatever your dog finds utterly delicious are a good way to ensure that your dog is motivated to come back to you.

Extendable leads. Used correctly, extendable leads are a good halfway house between a lead walk and a free run. Make sure you give your dog 10 minutes or so at the start of the walk to interact with their environment by opening up the lead so they can shake off the cobwebs and explore safely. If you do this at the beginning of the walk, theyll be happier to walk on a shorter lead for the rest of the walk.

Be less predictable. Try altering your route and, where practical, the time you walk your dog.

Walk with someone else. Even with the current restrictions, you can still take a walk with someone else as long as you keep a safe distance apart.

Photos. Make sure youve got plenty of recent photos of your dog clearly showing identifiable markings.

Microchips. Make sure your dog has been chipped and that you keep any changes to your details updated with the database. Also, because chips can move, its a good idea to ask your vet to scan your dog annually to check where the chip is.

If the unthinkable happens and your dog is taken, remember, you are not alone. There are plenty of online groups and pages offering help, guidance and support.

DogLost is a charity which provides a lost and found service which is free of charge. You should also notify police, dog wardens, vets and local rescue centres.

Visit dogsforgood.org for more information.

134% rise in people looking to give up unwanted animals, says Scottish SPCA

Sign up today and get 50% off a six-month subscription with promo code '50OFF'.

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Keep your dog safely tucked up and away from thieves - JohnOGroat Journal

Adult day centers offer security and stimulation for older adults – The Oakland Press

Cynthia Colbert of Rochester Hills was exhausted. She took her mom everywhere with her, afraid to leave her alone in case she wandered away. Charity had been a leader in her church the go-to person volunteers relied on for advice and now relied on her daughter for everything.

Desperate for help, Cynthia started an online search for a place nearby that would help support her mom, who was diagnosed with dementia a few years ago. She landed on Catholic Charities of Southeast Michigans adult day program in Auburn Hills, and it has proven to be life changing for her family.

Now, 90-year-old Charity has a place to go every day that is manageable, safe and friendly. She eats lunch with friends, stays busy with projects, and at the end of the day, the bus that picked her up in the morning drops her off at home. Shes mellower and sleeps better at night.

I do a lot of volunteer work and I had to be with her all day, Cynthia says. I had to give attention to her 24/7. That put a big strain on me mentally, to keep her busy. I was living her life, and mine, too. That was overwhelming for me. Charity lives with her daughter, son-in-law and granddaughter.

Today, Cynthia has time to take care of her own business without the constant anxiety. She says the staff at the center, on the campus of Sacred Heart Church, have some kind of magic touch.

Perhaps having someone with her all day that can give her special attention, that helped her. They are able to give her that one-on-one. It is very helpful. It has improved her memory, it has helped her socially, says Cynthia, 69.

Adult day programs offer a place for older adults, typically 60 and above, to go during weekdays to socialize, have lunch, and participate in activities ranging from brain games to singing to pet therapy. Some even offer personal care services like bathing and giving medication. Like many adult day programs, Catholic Charities (CCSEM) programs, in Auburn Hills and St. Clair Shores, are geared toward older adults with dementia.

The benefit to caregivers is they can hit that reset button on their mental health.

That respite can help rejuvenate them so they can better care for their loved one when theyre back home, says Kristin Wilson, the Area Agency on Aging 1-Bs manager of social services. Its important to know that adult day programs help both the participant and the caregiver the participants through socialization and interaction, and the caregivers by getting time to themselves.

The Area Agency on Aging 1-B (AAA 1-B) provides funding to adult day programs throughout its service area.

The hourly rate at adult day centers varies (CCSEMs average is $14/hour), and most programs ask for a donation to support their meal program. Most also use a sliding fee scale depending on a number of factors.

COVID shut down many adult day programs for a good part of 2020, but most of those in the AAA 1-B family have slowly begun to reopen with limited hours, restrictions on participant numbers and strict COVID safety protocols. CCSEM reopened its centers in July.

During the four or so months of closure, some participants conditions declined to the point where they did not return; in fact, the CCSEM programs have fewer than half the participants as before the pandemic took hold. Today, each center has between 6 and 10 but theyve maintained high staffing ratios. Families that have been exposed to COVID keep their loved ones home, and so far, there have been no infections at the centers.

Within weeks of reopening, says Nikki Harvey, manager of the St. Clair Shores site, Families were telling us that even just being at the center caused their loved ones to sleep better. We heard about sleep disruptions, which means much more burned-out caregivers. Participants were more disruptive during the day and families really suffered.

For participants, many just sat and watched TV when the centers were closed. That can worsen memory, says Harvey. When re-shutdown happened in Michigan, we saw that childcare centers remained open. We knew we couldnt close because of the potential decline. We wanted to do everything we could to not let that happen.

Charity did not start at the Auburn Hills center until October, so there was no disruption in her schedule. Today, she goes for 4-5 hours every day.

We have a very seasoned staff, says Kaitlyn Cooke, program manager of the Auburn Hills center. They dont have to be certified, but they have experience with seniors. They want to get goofy and fun and connect with the seniors. They are people who care and want to help other people. They understand dementia and the effect it has on these folks and their families.

They are very skilled there, says Cynthia. Its important that you research who is caring for your loved one, especially if they cant tell you what they do when theyre away from you.

For information about adult day programs in your area, contact the Area Agency on Aging 1-B at 800-852-7795 or go to aaa1b.org/?s=adult+day+programs.

Content provided by the Area Agency on Aging 1-B

The average age of an adult day program participant is 72, with two-thirds of them women.

About 35% of seniors in adult day programs live with an adult child, while 20% live with a spouse, 18% in an institutional setting, 13% with parents or other relatives, and 11% live alone.

Nationwide, 52% of adult day center clients have some form of cognitive impairment.

The national average daily rate for adult day programs is $61. Consider that the average annual cost for adult day services is $17,904 as opposed to homemaker home care at $44,616 and a home health aide at $45,760. Assisted living is $43,200, with semiprivate nursing home care at $80,300 and private nursing home care at $91,250.

Nearly 80% of adult day services centers have a nursing professional on staff. Almost 50% of these centers have a social work professional on staff, and about 60% offer case management services. Roughly 50% provide physical, occupational, or speech therapy.

More than 80% of adult day care participants attend full days and 46% attend five days per week, enabling family caregivers to remain in the workforce.

Source: Aging in Place

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Adult day centers offer security and stimulation for older adults - The Oakland Press

The Best Board Game Cafes in Europe – Spotted by Locals

Theres something to be said about playing board games with friends or family something that online games just cant achieve. Maybe its actually being able to look your opponent in the eye? Or knowing that your opponent cant be using the internet to place 75-point words?

Board games are here to stay and can be seen in more and more cafes around Europe. Our Spotters have spotted this trend, and are also fans of board games and have shared some of their favorite spots for playing board games. There are even some spots for buying games and toys, and theyre not only for kids!

Heres a selection:

Wrfel & Zucker is a lovely board game cafe in Hamburg, it translates into Dice & Sugar, here you can play many games and grab a snack too. Its the perfect spot to pop by with some friends on a rainy day according to our local Inga. Traveling solo? No problem, pop by and meet some locals game nerds while playing one of the 900 board games available to rent!

Find your game at Tsibakha true heaven for board games lovers our local Levan says. Here you can find all your favorite games, from role-playing to strategy and fantasy games. If you are new to the board game world or if you are still looking for a favorite game, make sure to check the Game Club and you wont be disappointed!

Brain Games in Riga is not just any shop where you can buy games according to our local and games lover Martins. Here, in fact, you can be part of Brain Games very own board game club and joining game playing events. This is also the locals first choice when looking for a board game, so be ready to meet many local board games enthusiasts!

Cafe Sperlof is the perfect Old-school game bar for anyone looking for a jump into the Viennese past according to our local Christopher. This spot will welcome you with a unique character made of yellowed walls, wood paneling, and giant stacks of board games! Here you can pick and play any board game for free or you can also bring your own and play while sipping a beer or two.

rna Luknja is a must-visit for any board and card games lover visiting Ljubljana, the perfect geek Eden and dragons den! According to our local Tina, this is a dark version of a wonderland filled with mysterious creatures, spells, and board games! You can also take part in tournaments if youre game or if youre not that big of a geek just pop by and explore the dungeon.

Let the games begin at Chaff and join a game evening full of board games! The perfect spot to meet some locals and play many games according to our local Wouter. Here, every Thursday evening you can take part in game night, by paying 3 euro you can choose many games to play till midnight. Their selection includes many less known games, but dont worry the organizers will provide a live explanation in advance!

Colonel Mustard in Oslo is a must-visit for any Cluedo fans and board game lovers out there! Colonel Mustard is named after a Cluedo character our spotter Emily says and you can choose to play many English and Norwegian games. Make yourself comfortable and youll feel like youre at your friends living room playing games, the only difference is that here theres a bar and plenty of beer on tap!

Total Bar in Zurich is a quirky spot to join if you want to sit back and relax. According to our local Ajuni, here you can borrow many board games and meet some locals while sipping a local beer. Total Bar is the perfect spot when in need of a break. Sit back, grab a game and few locals and enjoy the atmosphere of this special spot!

When in Lisbon make sure to visit Pastelaria Tentaes, its a must-visit, especially on Wednesdays our local Alexandre says. Here the Lisbon community of board games get together every Wednesday and share their favorite hobby by playing together. This is more than spot, its an experience for all ages, even if youre not that into board games!

Carcassonne is the perfect spot for your lazy board game afternoon according to our local Yana. Here you can try as many games as you like for as long as you like, and if you feel lazy you can ask the staff and theyll explain the rules to any game. Make sure to visit during the warmer months too to enjoy some games and fresh air in their outdoor yard. This spot is well hidden will you be able to find it?

Pop by Jolly Joker in Turin and jump back into your childhood in this house of nerds and games! Our local Eleonora loves this spot as it is a mix between a pub and a game shop. With plenty of games, board games, and roleplaying games the choices are endless. You can also join one of their many events, competitions, and themed nights.

Dragons Lair is the perfect spot for both board games junkie and total beginners. It combines a hangout where to play games and a game shop plus its Susannas favorite, our Stockholm local! There are many tables available to play board games, all you have to do is to pick one and if you cant just ask the staff for recommendations.

Caf Manuela will take you back to the 1920s with its decor and atmosphere. Once, this spot used to be a carpentry shop and its now a board game-cocktail bar with a vintage look. Our local Nadia visits this spot on rainy afternoons to sip a cocktail or two while playing some board games. The perfect spot to meet some locals or some famous actors as this spot is also used to film movies and tv shows!

Bastard Caf is part of a cultural place in Copenhagen called Huset. This is the perfect spot for anyone looking for a homelike atmosphere where to meet some locals and play some board games. According to our local William, if the games available are not enough here, you can choose to become a member to get access to a larger selection of games.

Playce is the perfect spot for any board game lover interested in Geman games. According to our local Dimitris this playce specializes in German games which have become popular among Greek game nerds. The price for playing is 1 euro per player and the choices are endless, you can also enjoy some coffee, snack and some music in total Greek style!

More? We have locals in 80+ cities!

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The Best Board Game Cafes in Europe - Spotted by Locals


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