Inside This Issue: Memory Issues, Paperless Billing, and More

Feb/Mar 2019, Vol. XIX, No 4

When Your Memory Doesn't Serve You

This may not be a concern for every reader of this newsletter, but for a growing number of us we are spending an increasing amount of time wondering about and possibly worrying about our memory. We find ourselves blanking as to why we just walked into a room. The next word or sentence eludes us during a conversation. We become frustrated as we search for the book we were just reading but have obviously misplaced.

We comment how we can’t seem to remember anything, lose everyday items like keys, glasses or remotes on a regular basis, and have difficulty recalling someone’s name. We tend to cut ourselves a break if we can’t remember a phone number, noting our dependence on mobile phones. But for most other fumbles associated with our brains and specifically our memory, we beat ourselves up like an egg white preparing to become whipped cream!

What we don’t do, however, is take a deep breath and understand that our frustration and coming down hard on ourselves only magnifies the memory-related challenge we are experiencing. And while there are some very unpleasant and scary reasons for some challenges, the underlying cause may be something manageable or treatable.

Our memory fails us for many reasons, but before jumping to conclusions, here are a few things you may not realize impact our brain function and memory: taking in enough water and nutrients; over-the-counter and prescription medications; getting enough rest, sleep and exercise; infections, including urinary tract; additional stress for any number of reasons, including too much on our plate, caregiving, or work responsibilities.

We encourage you to give thought to what is going on in your life and if there are changes you can make to possibly help manage memory challenges? We also invite you to attend your Council’s Memory Loss, Dementia & Alzheimer’s Disease session to learn more and hopefully answer questions you have. Our participants include those caring for someone with dementia as well as those concerned about their own memory. The next session is March 7th and the program can also be requested by community groups.

Sadly, there are other causes for memory challenges, including disease processes such as vascular dementia, Lewy body dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease. If this is the reality of your situation, having a health team with whom you can work and a support system, including your Council, are key.

It's Your Money: Should You Accept Paperless Billing Statements?

If you are like me, your bank, credit cards, and other creditors are trying to get you to accept ‘paperless’ billing statements. I am sure these companies spend a LOT of money producing and mailing statements each month, so they have a built-in incentive for you to go paperless. When you sign up for paperless statements, you won't get a statement in the mail anymore. Instead, your statement will be available online from your financial institution. Your financial institution will typically send a monthly email when your statement is ready, and then it is up to you to get the statement online. Obviously, if you don’t have a computer or internet access, you can stop reading right now because paperless statements aren’t an option.

There are advantages to paperless statements, but there are also disadvantages. You should carefully weigh the pros and cons for your situation, and not let the financial companies push you into a decision you might regret.

First, let’s look at some of the reasons why you might consider paperless statements:

Paperless statements are good for the environment. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the average American uses the equivalent of a 100-foot-tall Douglas fir tree in paper each year. Fewer paper statements means less air pollution from paper production, and less trash in our landfills. Some creditors have even promised to make their own contributions to environmental causes when you sign up for paperless billing.

The elimination of billing statements means there is less paper and clutter in your home. You will save time sorting through bills and figuring out what to keep, throw away and shred. If you want a permanent record, you can download your statement/bills and save them to your computer or external drive. Most creditors make several months of billing statements available online, so it may not be necessary to save your most recent statements.

Paperless statements are more secure. You don’t have to worry about paper mail being stolen. Even hacking your email account wouldn’t give a thief access to your financial information since you have to log in to your creditor’s website to view your statements. Emails from your creditors should never contain your full account number.

Now let’s look at some reasons why you might not want paperless statements:

One of the downsides to going paperless is that it’s easier to forget to send payments without the paper bill as a reminder. If you need a due date reminder but don’t have a paper bill, you can add a simple note to your calendar or put a note on your fridge.

Without a paper statement you could also miss your due date if the creditor’s emails go unread or are caught by your spam filter and never delivered to your email box. Make sure you add your creditor’s email address to your “safe list” to prevent the emails from being automatically quarantined.

It’s easier to neglect reviewing the specific charges on your statement if you don’t have a piece of paper in front of you each month. If you don’t review the details, you might miss a mistake or fraudulent charge on your bill.

Hopefully these lists will help you decide whether paperless bills are for you. Even if you choose not to sign up for paperless billing, you can still pay your account online. You can either pay through your bank, if online bill pay is offered, or directly to the creditor through their website. In addition, online payments can save a stamp, and are typically safer than mailing a check.

Music and the Brain

The hard work of volunteers over the last 4 months culminated on November 6th with 75% of the voters approving the renewal of the Senior Services Levy. With great humility we thank the Greene County community and beyond for their support of the Council’s mission ~ promoting independence & quality of life for Greene County senior citizens and caregivers.

With 93% of the Council’s revenues coming from the Senior Services Levy, the passage of Issue 7 ensures Council programs and services, including grants to the senior centers, will continue through 2024.

Music and the Brain

We have two Music and the Brain programs on the calendar this year, with the first set for Thursday, March 28th from 1:30pm to 4:30pm at the Xenia Community Center next to our office. We hope you will join us for this fun, brain-stretching afternoon. Flyers will be available at the senior centers, the Council offices and on our website . You can also learn about this program and others by Liking Us on Facebook to receive our regular posts! 

Senior Artisan Show

Please stop in to the Senior Artisan Show and enjoy a wonderful and diverse collection of art by Greene County senior artisans, and tasty refreshments provided by the Fairborn Senior Center.

Sundays, March 3, 10, & 17
1:00 pm – 3:30 pm

Wednesday, March 20
11:00 am – 2:00 pm

Fairborn Art Association
Rear of Fairborn Senior Housing
221 Central Avenue

It's My Money! My Stuff! My Life!

Tuesdays, Feb 26th, Mar 5, 12, 19, 26
6:00pm—8:30pm
Xenia Community Center
1265 W. Second St

The program details and registration can be found on the Council’s website or you can request to have it e-mailed/sent by contacting the Council at 376-5486 or info@gccoa.org. The registration deadline is February 18th and the cost is $40 per household which includes handouts, refreshments and area professionals covering topics such as Wills, Advanced Directives, Assets, Trusts, Probate & Taxes, Insurance, Medicare & other Health Insurance.

 SeniorPalooza

The April/May newsletter will include the details … but please mark your calendar and plan to join us for SeniorPalooza 2019 ~ a fun-filled day for those of us who are 50 and better. It is Tuesday, May 21st from 8:30am to 3pm at the Fairgrounds. We start the day with a 5K walk/stroll for the early risers, followed by a variety of activities to enjoy and fitting with our theme of Going With The Flow . There is no cost to participate, unless you purchase a box lunch.

We Are In This Together!

We would like to thank the following individuals for sharing their time & talent with the Council.                     

Mike Allen
Pat Beal
Phyllis Beck
David Berns
Peggy Blankenhorn
Linda Bullock
Dave Cusack
Phyllis Desch
Jerri DeVoe
Leah Donohue
Dorothy Douglas
Evelyn Ferguson
Dave Finster
L.B. & Gail Fred
Betty Gibson
Margaret Goodman
Bob Hagler
Lynn Hardman
Rika Hendrickson
Cecilia Hightower
John Hobson
Linda Jones
Letha Kimball
John Kinsel
George Knight
Anita Kuntz
Jackie Markunes
Ed Martin

Sherry Matsel
Barbara McKown
Chris Middleton
Sharon MorganPaul Mullin
Nancy Mullins
Lauren Myers
Foy Neff
Sherry Newcomer
Ruby Norman
Roger Panton
Sandi Porter
Joe Radin
Ken Richardson
Chuck Ryan
Pam & Joe Sowder
Shawnah Tibbs-Sergent
Ginny Vikmanis
Mike & Sue Vuckovich
Lisa Weinstein
Barbara Werth
Polly Werth
Brian Woehrman
The Team at Synergy

A special insert with a complete listing of those contributing to our Annual Appeal and sharing a financial gift in 2018 can be found here.

Upcoming Programs & Meetings

Medicare 101 (offered every other month)
Wednesday, February 13th ~ 3:30pm—5:00pm
GCCOA Office ~ 1195 W. Second St., Xenia

It’s My Money, My Stuff, My Life
Tuesdays, February 26th, March 5th, 12th, 19th, & 26th ~ 6:00-8:30pm
Xenia Community Center ~ 1265 W. Second St., Xenia

Greene County Senior Artisan Show
Sundays, March 3rd, 10th, and 17th ~ 1:00pm – 3:30pm
Wednesday, March 20th ~ 11:00 am – 2:00 pm
Fairborn Art Association ~ Rear of Fairborn Senior Housing Apartments

Memory Loss, Dementia & Alzheimer’s Disease (offered every other month)
Thursday, March 7th ~ 2:30pm—4:30pm
GCCOA Office ~ 1195 W. Second Street

Senior Euchre Tournament ~ Greene County Fairgrounds
Wednesday, March 27th ~ 12:30pm—4:00pm

Music and the Brain
Thursday, March 28th ~ 1:30pm to 4:30pm
Xenia Community Center (next to GCCOA Office) 1265 W. Second St, Xenia
For more information about these and other GCCOA programs/events,
please contact the Council at 937-376-5486 or info@gccoa.org 

 
 
 

Greene County Council on Aging
937-376-5486
Committed to Seniors and Caregivers

Our mission: To promote independence and quality of life for Greene County senior citizens and caregivers by facilitating and supporting the development, implementation and continual improvement of a comprehensive and coordinated system of contact and care.

 
 

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