Cumberland group to hold forum on healthy aging

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CUMBERLAND — The town’s Aging in Place group hopes to spread the word about Medicare, caregivers and healthy living at its third annual Forum on Aging.

The 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m. event Saturday, Nov. 4, at Greely Middle School, 351 Tuttle Road, will include free workshops, blood pressure readings, vendors and lunch. Reservations are not necessary, and transportation is available by calling 829-3367 or emailing cumberlandrides@gmail.com.

The forum will tackle four topics.

The first, “Taking Charge of Your Health,” hosted by the Southern Maine Agency on Aging, will cover issues like decision-making, preventing falls, managing chronic pain, diet, and communication skills, aimed toward keeping seniors independent and active in the community.

“Overcoming Caregiver Challengers,” the second topic, is a panel led by Peter Baker of the Maine Alzheimer’s Association; author and support group facilitator Catherine Gentile, and Kirsten Dorsey of SMAA’s Stewart Adult Day Center in Falmouth. Along with discussing challenges facing caregivers, they will offer advice on surmounting difficulties, answer questions and provide links to caregiver resources and support.

Paul Doherty of SMAA hosts the third topic, “Advance Planning Seminar,” which will look at options for developing an end-of-life care plan, talking with relatives about that topic, and establishing a plan that reflects one’s wishes. Participants can sign up to receive individual counseling sessions.

In the fourth topic, “Welcome to Medicare,” David Smith of SMAA will discuss how people can apply for and navigate the program. Individual counseling sessions will also be available.

Now in its fourth year, Aging in Place Cumberland operates the free Cumberland Area Rides program, a morning call-in check for seniors who live alone, a free loan program for durable medical equipment, a friendly visitor program, and social activities and events for seniors.

Call Aging in Place Cumberland at 829-2205, ext. 346, email aip@cumberlandmaine.com, or visit aipcumberland.org for more information.

Alex Lear can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 113 or alear@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @learics.

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A Maine native and Colby College graduate, Alex has been covering coastal communities since 2001, and currently handles Bath, Topsham, Cumberland, and North Yarmouth. He and his wife, Lauren, live in the Portland area, and Alex recently released his third album of original music.