Wellness Tips from Our On-Site Physician

Wellness Tips from Our On-Site Physician

February 12, 2019

Dr. Suzanne Jorey is familiar with the care of older adults, and she says one key factor in wellness is interacting with others. It can bring benefits that range from better nutrition to keeping the mind active and engaged.

Our residents count on Dr. Jorey to help keep them healthy. She has joined our team as a physician who makes house calls here, along with Dr. May Awkal, RNs and LPNs, and rehab specialists. Residents also take the van or drive their own vehicles to visit Dr. Jorey at Chestnut Medical Associates, her practice on Birnie Avenue in Springfield.

Dr. Jorey has appointments here with residents on Saturdays, as needed. She focuses on preventative care and helping our older adults maintain their independence through pain management, dementia care, medication management, and tending to day-to-day primary care needs.

“It’s nice for them to not have to find a ride,” she says. “They can just pop in, or I can pop in on them. I think patients tend to feel more comfortable when you see them where they live.”

Dr. Jorey is affiliated with Baystate Medical Center and received her medical degree from the University of Massachusetts Medical School. She has been in practice for more than 20 years. 

These are four wellness tips Dr. Jorey recommends for older adults, to keep them healthy in mind, body, and spirit. Socialization factors in to several of these suggestions.

  • Eat balanced meals. “A lot of older people get into the habit of having tea and toast and skipping meals,” Dr. Jorey says. This causes them to lose weight and strength. Part of the reason seniors avoid mealtime is they often lack the energy needed to go to the grocery store, prepare meals, and clean up. But individuals who are living on their own may also be eating light because they don’t have the socialization piece that comes with gathering the family around the table. “It’s great at a life plan community like Glenmeadow because residents can enjoy their meals together,” Dr. Jorey says. She recommends that older adults make an effort to eat balanced meals with protein, vegetables and fruits, carbohydrates, vitamins, and nutrients. To learn more about a healthy diet for older adults, read our blog on seniors and nutrition[.
  • Exercise inside or out. “The people who I see who are healthier as they get into their older years are people who keep moving,” Dr. Jorey says. She recommends that older adults exercise daily. If you live at home and can’t get out, she recommends walking around your house or using bands for resistance training. If you have transportation, she suggests visiting your local senior center and taking exercise classes. Dr. Jorey notes that residents of Glenmeadow, and Lifestyle Pass members, have many opportunities for exercise and socialization at their fingertips; this is a winning combination for good health.
  • See a doctor regularly. “Make sure you get all the required immunizations,” Dr. Jorey says, noting that older adults should see their physician at least once a year and make sure to follow recommendations on regular screenings—colonoscopies, mammograms, pap smears, etc. She said a senior’s physician will recommend such things as exercise, moderation with alcohol, no smoking, and an assessment for falls risks. “Medicare will pay for an annual wellness screening,” she adds.
  • Spend time with other people. Older adults who move to life plan communities such as Glenmeadow often do so because they are lonely and longing for social activities with others. “When people have those opportunities to see other people, it helps the mind and helps ward off depression and feelings of isolation,” Dr. Jorey says. “It keeps the mind active and engaged.”

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