Aging Well in the Gorge February 19th 2020


If you don't experience joint pain or stiffness consider yourself lucky because most everyone I know does - and Arthritis is usually the culprit.

According to my go-to site for health information, Medline Plus (Health Information from the U.S. Library of Medicine) there are many types of Arthritis but Osteoarthritis is the most common. Some people call it degenerative joint disease or “wear and tear” arthritis. It occurs most frequently in the hands, hips, and knees and happens when the cartilage within a joint begins to break down and the underlying bone begins to change. These changes usually develop slowly and get worse over time. So don’t wait!

If you experience joint pain, the first thing is to see a doctor - if you haven’t already. Only a doctor can tell if you have arthritis or a related condition and what to do about it. There’s no known cure for Arthritis, but there are many treatments to try before the last resort: surgery.

Make sure you keep your joints moving. Often your doctor will suggest physical therapy where you will learn muscle strengthening exercises and gentle stretching exercises that move your joints through their full range of motion.

Other suggestions are:
Take a walk every day. (Check online for the Arthritis Foundation's self-directed “Walk With Ease” Program.)
Use heat and cold therapies to reduce joint pain and swelling. A warm morning shower can help.
Try relaxation therapy to help reduce pain by learning ways to relax your muscles.
Use assistive device such as a cane or a jar opener.  
Try over-the-counter pain relievers such as Tylenol Arthritis 8 Hour Extended Relief to help you get through the night.
And know your limits. Balance activity and rest - and don't overdo it.

Also, you may have heard of different complementary practices. My wife believes putting some gelatin in her juice every night reduces her arthritic pain. And my son has mentioned the “possible” benefits of Glucosamine-Chrondrotin supplements. But before you try any supplements, talk to your doctor first to make sure they are safe and there aren’t any harmful interactions with your current medications. You can also visit the National Center for Complimentary and Integrative Health website which provides the latest objective scientific research on the effectiveness and safety of alternative approaches.

We can avoid many risk factors for arthritis but there is one we can’t: getting older. (Or going back in time and taking better care of my joints!) Talk to your doctor, keep moving but don't overdo it, keep doing what your doctor prescribed, and stay positive. It may be a pain in the, uh, hip. But it’s better than the alternative.


The program for the 2020 Original Courthouse Regional History Forum on Saturday February 22nd is “Finding the Wire Trail:  Early Instant Communication in the Gorge”.
Dave and Helen Wand and Larry McGinnis who live east of Troutdale have been at work finding traces of the original telegraph system that ascended from the Sandy River and continued east to The Dalles following an old Indian trail. The program begins at 1:30 p.m. in the 1859 courthouse behind The Dalles Chamber of Commerce/Visitors’ Center.

The 2 inch diameter hole found in the upper right hand corner of the old school desks was used as an ink well - or as Sandy Haechrel told me an imaginative place to hold flowers.

I received correct answers from Jerry Phillips, Jim Ayers, Vicki Sallee, Diana Weston, Lana Tepfer, Rhonda Spies, Laura Comini, Dave Lutgens, Patricia Foster, Sandy Haechrel, Kim Birge, Bill Jones, Denise Johnson, Carol Earl, Jeanne Pesicka, Virginia Johnson, Deloris Schrader and Patricia Foster this week’s winner of a quilt raffle ticket. And last week I missed Betsy Ayers.

Through the 50’s and 60’s television was such a part of our lives, many of the catchphrases from those days came from popular television series. For this week’s “Remember When” question, in what hit television series first aired in 1966 did the IMF leader receive their tape-recorded instructions ending with “This tape will self-destruct in 5 seconds”? Email your answer to mcseniorcenter@gmail.com, leave a message at 541-296-4788 or drop it off with a recording of the theme music composed by Lalo Schifrin.

Well, it’s been another week, wondering if it will ever snow again this winter. Until we meet again, keep your head on your shoulders and your boots in the stirrups.

“Right now I'm having amnesia and deja vu at the same time... I think I’ve forgotten this before.” Steven Wright

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