Your Grandchildren Help You Age With Vitality

Salvatore Vuono /

These days, aging is not something that people should dread-it is a part of life to look forward to and it is time to embrace aging with vitality! One important part of aging with vitality is staying both mentally and physically active, and one way seniors can do this is by taking advantage of their grandchildren’s spunk and spark. Grandchildren have endless reserves of energy and they can really boost their grandparents’ engagement in and enjoyment of stimulating mental and physical activity. If you are a grandparent, here are a few ways your grandchildren can keep you physically and psychologically fit and enjoying life:

Grandchildren keep you mentally fit: Children are immensely creative and have many ways of showing you new and exciting perspectives on the world because they are not as limited by the social conventions that arrest us in adulthood. They see the world as a space of endless possibilities. Part of aging with vitality is to keep your mind open to new ideas and experiences, and your grandchildren can assist you with this is you engage in imaginative play with them. A study published in the Psychology of Aesthetics, creativity, and the Arts indicated that when adults view a situation through a child’s eyes, their conceptions and responses to the situation were more authentic, so it is very healthy to take on a child’s perspective once in a while-especially later on in life.

Grandchildren keep you physically fit: If you have ever run around a park with a toddler all day, or even around the house, you know just how physically demanding and energy extracting being with a child can be. Being with your grandchildren is a great way to exercise without having to sign up for a gym or even think about the fact that you are being so physically active-it is just natural. Aging with vitality is about keeping your body as fit as your mind, so running around town, the zoo, or even in your backyard with your grandkids will keep your blood pumping and your bones and muscles moving!

Aging with vitality is a lifestyle choice and if you make it a priority to keep you mind and body active and alert into your senior years, you and your family will reap the rewards of pleasurable and happy experiences. Aging with vitality means that you make a decision to embrace your later years and your Grandchildren are an important ingredient in this recipe for success because they keep your mind and body active in ways that adults no longer can-they have the imagination and energy to keep your mental and physical batteries fully charged.

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Why Are We Seeing an Explosion in ADHD Among Children?

Paul Gooddy /

For as long as it has been around, ADHD has been a controversial diagnosis. Many people, parents and grandparents in particular, wonder why there were no ADHD children in their classrooms when they were children and now suddenly they seem to be everywhere. What has changed so much about children and where did ADHD come from?

One major change that has led to the proliferation of ADD diagnoses is the ubiquity of psychiatry and psychiatric services. Compared to 50 or 100 years, advances in psychiatry have determined that many behavioral problems, from nervousness to hyperactivity, are actually disorders that can be labeled and treated, whether with drugs or even cognitive behavioral therapy, as is the case with many anxiety disorders. Psychiatrists say that ADHD itself has always been around, it’s just the label “ADHD” that hasn’t.

ADHD is a developmental disorder that is characterized by poor attention skills and hyperactive behavior. Children with ADHD struggle to focus on tasks that they need to complete at home or school and are prone to outbursts of energy that can be disruptive in various social situations. At present, 3-5% of children globally are diagnosed with ADHD and it is one of the most commonly discussed and studied psychiatric disorders.

As with many psychiatric diagnoses, the big debate in ADHD is whether it is a disorder caused by nature or nurture-it is a biological disorder or a maladaptive social disorder? On the one hand, many researchers claim that it has biological roots that can only be treated with drugs like Ritalin. Opponents of the biological approach claim that it does not take into account the social changes that have accompanied ADHD’s rise, such as longer, more regulated days in school and homes in which both parents work. The believe that ADHD is a cry for attention due to a society that does not allow them to get their needs met, but simply lines them up for pharmaceutical companies.

So what is the truth behind the nature vs. nurture debate? Probably a little bit of both. Drugs have been shown to help children diagnosed with ADHD, but there is also proof that ADHD can be attenuated by lifestyle and dietary changes. ADHD is a hotly debated topic and will continue to be in the future as people become increasingly suspicious of the health profession’s tie to the pharmaceutical industry. However, whether or not you prescribe to nature or nurture, ADHD is a very real disorder for the millions who suffer from it, so it is important that we don’t stigmatize them-we must continue to look for ways to help them have a better quality of life.

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