EAAA’s Health and Safety Fair great resource for seniors

Posted Oct. 18, 2012, at 9:47 a.m.

There is a definite chill in the air. Just as we have our cars and homes checked out for winter, we should also have ourselves checked out. Now there is a great way to do that and have fun in the process.

Eastern Area Agency on Aging’s free annual Senior Health and Safety Fair at Spectacular Event Center, 395 Griffin Rd., Bangor, is Thursday, Oct. 25, from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

The first thing you’ll want to do is go through your medicine cabinet and pull out all your expired or no longer necessary medications and bring them with you for the Penobscot County Triad Drug Drop-Off Box. Get these meds out of your house. And while you are visiting the Triad table, pick up a free disaster preparedness starter to-go bag. These bags are free to the first 500 attendees.

This fair is all about helping you take care of yourself and knowing your personal health numbers and being safe, especially in the event of an emergency or natural disaster.

The Senior Health and Safety Fair is bringing together a variety of organizations to help keep you are your best. You can have your blood pressure taken, get your glucose level checked, and be assessed for stroke risk by Eastern Maine Medical Center. And you can have your eyes checked including a glaucoma test with Vision Care of Maine, while Dr. Shapero, M.D. will be doing spirometry breathing tests.

Rosscare will be demonstrating the Live Safe Response Service and Community Health and Counseling Services will check your oxygen levels and display techniques to help those with low-vision.

How’s your balance? Going into the winter months it’s a good idea to have your stability checked out. When walkways become slippery, having good balance can help you navigate. The better your balance the less likely you are to fall. Wondering how you measure up? EAAA will put you through the paces with a Falls-Risk Assessment. It is a great test that can help you understand your risk for taking tumble and hopefully help you prevent one. You will get a print-out for your doctor, too.

Your risk for getting sick is elevated in the fall and winter too, so roll up your sleeve and fight influenza by getting your flu shot provided by Walgreens. Bring your Medicare card, insurance card or money.

You can visit Legal Services for the Elderly with any legal questions and scope out home health agencies

Now that we have checked out some of your health numbers, let’s take a look at your Medicare part D plan. These numbers are important too. Open enrollment for Med D is Oct. 15 running through Dec. 7. There are a lot of plans out there and EAAA wants to make sure you get the right one. We can enroll you right at the fair. It will be first come first served and be sure to bring a list of your medications with you. It’s as easy as that.

Now let’s talk about safety. The Red Cross, the Maine Emergency Management Agency, Penobscot County emergency management will help you plan for a disaster and remember if you are one of the first 500 people through the door, you will receive a free disaster prep starter kit. Be sure to visit the Old Town Fire Department’s Hazard House which will help you learn more about fire safety as October is Fire Safety Month.

The Senior Health and Safety Fair is sponsored by Winterberry Heights Assisted Living and Memory Loss Center, AARP Maine, Bangor Hydro and Walgreens.

If possible, please bring a non-perishable item for AARP’s Food Drive to benefit the Good Shepherd Food Bank. Delicious refreshments will be served and there will be door prizes. Don’t miss the 2012 Senior Health and Safety Fair.

Carol Higgins Taylor is director of communications at Eastern Area Agency on Aging. For information on EAAA, call 941-2865, toll-free 800-432-7812 visit http://www.EAAA.org.

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