Community News
Reduce the Stigma

In 2012, an international survey of adult skills needed for success in work and everyday life was completed. Results showed that 45% of British Columbians aged 16 to 65 have difficulty accomplishing some daily living tasks due in part to limited literacy skills. There are likely as many reasons for low literacy as there are students. Online resources and community organizations can help; a major problem lies in finding and persuading those who could benefit to seek assistance. Perhaps an important first step that everyone can take is to help reduce the stigma associated with lower literacy levels.

Stay Independent in Your Own Home

Getting a little help may allow you to live in your home for as long as you want to. From compassionate, licensed Caregivers to Registered Nurses, care is available because “There’s no place like Home”. When searching for a Home Care Service, look for *A 24/7 Care Team that you can reach anytime, *An emphasis on reliability and professionalism, and *Carefully selected caregivers for a great fit, who meet your needs, interests and personality. With the ability to age comfortably at home, your or your loved one is empowered to keep living life to its fullest. Happier Aging, at home, is our philosophy.

Remember 1-4-2

Have you heard of Canada’s Low-Risk Gambling Guidelines (#LRGG)? Guideline 1: Gamble no more than 1% of household income, e.g.: $60,000 annual gross income = $50/month. Guideline 2: Gamble no more than 4 days per month = roughly once a week. Guideline 3: Avoid regularly gambling at more than 2 types of games, including lotteries, sports betting, table games, slot machines, scratch tickets, horse racing, bingo, video lottery terminals (VLTs), and online gambling. Mental health & addictions, gambling type and reasons for gambling can make these guidelines difficult to follow. Reach out to VI Gaming Support! We’re here for you.

Spring Has Arrived

Even though spring has sprung, we can still experience rain and cooler temperatures well into April. Make sure to continue to stay warm with these six hacks: *Stay warm indoors – put on that extra sweater. *Beware of slick outdoor conditions. Wet sidewalks and walkways can be very slippery and can cause a slip and fall in an instant. *Wear appropriate clothing outdoors. Layers and a windproof/waterproof outer layer are recommended. *Stay current on immunizations. Have you had your Covid booster? *Consume a balanced diet and *Keep well-hydrated. These are important all year long. Happy Spring.

Make Social Interaction a Priority

Maintaining relationships and spending time with others is essential to our emotional and mental well-being. It can help prevent depression which affects 20 percent of the population over 70 years of age. Socializing also keeps the mind active and improvements are greater when the person is involved in fun interests with other people. Plan regular get-togethers with friends, such as a weekly lunch date or coffee with another senior or loved one. Scheduling social interactions give us something to look forward to on a regular basis. For those who are truly adventurous you can enjoy new experiences and meet new people by signing up for travel tours, book clubs, and much more at your local community centre.

Acknowledge Disappointment

We had cool, wet weather out here on the island recently, which was in contrast to our expectations. This can lead many people to start to focus on regrets and lost possibilities of what “could have been”. The challenge with focusing on what “could have been” is that it never can be, so starts a negative thought pattern of rumination. One way to avoid constant and repetitive thoughts about what could have been is to shift the regret into disappointment instead. When we acknowledge the disappointment, we can focus our attention on what we will do instead.

Free Hearing Test Components

Hearing loss is a fairly common health issue for adults in Canada.

The good news is that it is treatable, especially when addressed at earlier stages. If your hearing is not what it used to be, why not schedule an appointment to get it checked as soon as possible.

To help with this, NexGen Hearing is pleased to offer free hearing tests at our hearing clinics across Vancouver, Lower Mainland BC, Vancouver Island and the British Columbia Interior.

What can you expect during this hearing test? That’s what we’ll explore in this edition of the NexGen Hearing blog.

What Does a Hearing Test Entail?

Being proactive about your hearing health today will pay off tomorrow.

That’s why we recommend getting your hearing checked, especially if you have concerns regarding hearing loss or feel as though your hearing has deteriorated over time.

Our free, three-step hearing test includes:

1. Air Conduction

You will be listening to tones of decreasing volume until they are no longer audible.

Both left and right ears will undergo this test independently.

2. Word Discrimination

You will listen to spoken words in both ears.

Since you won’t be able to read the speaker’s lips, this will effectively measure your ability to identify speech.

3. Tympanometry

In a tymnpanometry test, we will check whether your eardrums and middle ear system are working properly.

This way, we will be able to determine if your hearing loss is coming from your inner ear or your middle ear.

Hearing assessments are painless and take less than one hour of your day. All you have to do is choose a NexGen Hearing clinic near you to book your free hearing test.

Reasons to Test Your Hearing

While most adults get their eyes examined frequently, many people do not get their hearing tested as often as they should.

While hearing aids cannot repair hearing damage, they can help restore the sounds of the world around you.

Still, it is preferable to maintain the hearing level you already have and use preventative measures to ward off further hearing loss. A hearing test can help determine where that hearing loss is occurring, so that you can take measures to preserve your hearing from here on out.

Here are 3 reasons to visit an audiologist:

To catch hearing loss early

One in five adults in Canada experiences hearing loss.

The longer you wait, the more difficult it will be for your brain to adapt to hearing aids.

For health reasons

Hearing loss does not only occur due to aging.

It can be a symptom of several health conditions, such as cardiovascular disease or diabetes.

Also, if you work in a noisy environment, getting your hearing tested can help you protect your ears better.

To establish a baseline

If you are in your 50s or more, and you haven’t gotten your hearing tested recently, it’s time to visit your local audiologist.

Even if there is no significant hearing loss, your test will serve as a benchmark for future assessments.

If you find yourself turning the volume up while your family complains about your hearing issues, or you are frequently asking other people to repeat themselves, you might be experiencing hearing loss. Do not postpone your hearing test any longer!

Listen to Your Body

Having established the importance of getting one’s hearing checked, we invite you to contact us today to schedule your free hearing test.

By examining your unique hearing requirements, our specialists will determine the best next steps for your hearing needs and assist you with any questions you may have.

Puzzles for a Strong Mind

Puzzling is a mental workout that stimulates both sides of the brain. Studies have shown that jigsaw puzzles can help improve visual-spatial reasoning, short-term memory and problem-solving skills, as well as reduce the rate of cognitive decline and dementia. It can help improve your mood by boosting dopamine production. Puzzling helps reinforce connections between brain cells, improving mental speed and thought processes. Engaging yourself in puzzle-making can serve as an exercise in mindfulness and help relieve stress. Puzzles are a great way to exercise the small muscles in fingers and eyes especially for those with arthritis or who have experienced a stroke.

Stimulate Your Brain with Change

Create change. Your brain will love you for it. Take charge of things you can change. Invite little changes into your life daily. It feels good and it will keep your neurons firing. Change stimulates your brain by providing new experiences. The change increases brain activity and builds networks of connections. Just small everyday changes will stimulate your brain. Brush your teeth with your non-dominant hand, put your opposite leg in your pants first, rearrange things in your living room, drive a different way on a regular route, or try a new recipe. Keep your brain active and neurons firing.

Be Aware of Scams

Most of us believe that we would never fall victim to a scam. Unfortunately, the scammers are good and so convincing that it happens to many people every year. Here are some tips: *Never give anyone permission to log in to your computer, whether in person or via phone. *If someone calls saying they are a family member in peril, always tell them you will call them right back! *The Canada Revenue Agency will never call you to ask for back taxes. Do not give the caller any information; hang up immediately. *Never pay a fine or penalty with Gift Cards. *If in doubt, call the non-emergency police number and ask for advice.

Keep Betting in Perspective

March Madness (NCAA Basketball) is one of the biggest sports betting events across North America. According to a study at reported on, in 2019, 47M Americans gambled on March Madness, with an estimated $8.5B wagered. More than 40M participants filled in over 149M brackets, with 18M Americans wagering about $3.9B on sportsbooks alone. And these are strictly American statistics. In Canada, online sports betting was recently legalized (August 2021), however, 3rd party apps abound, offering sports betting enthusiasts many opportunities and types of gambling. Keep sports betting fun and in perspective. Don’t let a game you can’t control, control you.