Monday, 24 November 2014 17:32

Benefits of a Neck Lift

It's natural for skin to age over time, whether due to sun exposure, environmental pollutants, or the skin's natural loss of elasticity. The skin on your face may become looser and less firm, drooping downward and forming a softer jawline and even the dreaded double chin.

Cosmetic surgery can fix these signs of aging; neck lifts in particular are a common solution. Atlanta's Dr. Sinha offers neck lifts to help reverse the signs of aging in your neck and give you a fresher appearance.

Dr-Sinha-Web-5-inFULLDr. Sinha performs a neck lift by making small incisions in the fold of the hairline and behind the ear. He removes excess skin, sculpts the jaw and neckline, and repositions the skin tissue to eliminate wrinkles and provide a long-lasting, youthful look.

Neck lift surgery procedures vary, and are often performed in conjunction with other surgeries, like face lifts. Neck lifts can involve liposuction to remove fat, cervicoplasty to remove excess skin, or platysmaplasty to tighten the neck muscles and smooth out unwanted lines. Before proceeding with any surgery, Dr. Sinha holds a comprehensive consultation with each of his patients to determine the specifics of their neck lift, or if they are better suited for non-surgical alternatives such as Botox or laser resurfacing.










Q & A with Dr. Sinha

What's the recovery process like?

Patients typically go home same day or can opt to stay overnight. The patient will have a loose dressing for two days, and stitches are typically removed after 7-10 days.

What types of reactions should I look out for?

You might experience mild bruising or discoloration for the first week or two after surgery. An esthetician from the Atlanta Institute for Facial Aesthetic Surgery can help you apply makeup to cover up any bruising or discoloration. Swelling is also common and should go down on its own within the first few weeks.

What factors do you consider before going ahead with the procedure?

A patient's skin type, bone structure and desired outcome are all taken into account in order to plan the ideal neck lift. Old photographs are helpful as Dr Sinha is very particular about natural looking results.


Dr. Sinha is a Double Board Certified Facial Plastic Surgeon specializing in cosmetic and functional surgery of the head and neck. He has successfully treated thousands of patients and is highly regarded and well respected by his peers in the medical community.

Sponsored by: Atlanta Institute For Facial Aesthetic Surgery | 980 Johnson Ferry Road, Suite 110 | Atlanta, GA 30342 | Phone: (404) 256-5428 |


Whether you are a caregiver or patient, you know already that Alzheimer's Disease affects us all. 5.2 million Americans (of all ages) have Alzheimer's. Alzheimer's is the sixth leading cause of death beating breast and prostate cancers combined. Approximately 500,000 people will die this year from Alzheimer's. Every 67 seconds someone in the U.S. develops Alzheimer's and a gray tsunami is coming. Unfortunately, no new drug therapies have been approved for Alzheimer's in well over 10 years.

Dr-SambunarisIn addition to working with your regular physician, those struggling with Alzheimer's can take an important step in combating this incurable disease by participating in a clinical trial. Being part of a trial lets you become an active participant, doing all you can to fight the progression of your disease while helping others including medical science advance our treatments and understanding of this devastating disease.

According to the Alzheimer's Association ( people involved in clinical studies do somewhat better than people in a similar stage of their disease who are not enrolled in a study, regardless of whether the experimental treatment works. This may be due to the general high quality of care provided during clinical studies.



Q&A with Dr. Angelo Sambunaris
From the Institute for Advanced Medical Research

Why do people participate in a clinical research study?
People participate in clinical research for a variety of reasons. Those who volunteer are oftentimes seeking access to potentially promising medicines long before they are approved for the marketplace. By participating in medical research participants typically will receive excellent research level care from the investigating physicians during the course of the study.

What are the benefits of medical research participation?
There are lots of reasons to participate. When you are enrolled in a study, you receive things like VIP-level diagnostic evaluations including a thorough diagnostic assessment by an expert in the field, clinical testing and a complete physical examination. Clinical oversight means the team takes an interest in your total health, not just the disorder that brought you in the door. You get support and medical supervision at no cost and you may help society access new drugs currently not available to the general public.

Dr. Angelo Sambunaris has been a leader in the field of clinical research for over two decades. Prior to founding the Institute for Advanced Medical Research in 1989, he led clinical research teams at Solvay and Bayer Pharmaceutical. He also served as Lieutenant Commander, Research Officer Group United States Public Health Services at the NIMH.

Sponsored by: Institute for Advanced Medical Research | 5895 Windward Parkway, Suite 150 | Alpharetta, GA 30005 | Phone: (770) 817-9200 |


Monday, 24 November 2014 17:04

A Helping Hand at Home

What signs indicate that home care may be helpful to someone experiencing memory loss or dementia?

The usual indications for home care are when the family caregiver is no longer able to care for themselves due to the constant care demands of their loved one. Other indications are when the family is having difficulty handling behavioral outbursts, maintaining their loved one's personal dignity, or managing the physical demands of transfers.

What are the benefits to using a home care company versus managing care on your own?

Caring for someone with dementia feels like a never-ending day. By using a professional company, the person with dementia benefits from professional input and training, and the family caregivers have a safety net of respite relief with the professionals.

140219 thesprings058How are CaraVita caregivers trained to comfort and support dementia patients?

All our caregivers take The Virtual Dementia Tour by Second Wind Dreams, an eight-minute experience that simulates having dementia. By using this experiential approach, the caregiver is uniquely prepared to empathize and assist someone with dementia.

Our training also addresses the following six areas: dementia's effects on brain function, the stages of dementia, how to prompt a person with dementia to complete everyday tasks, how to recognize dementia-related behavioral changes, how to organize a functional schedule for the patient, and how to maximize interactions by getting to know the person's life story. This training helps caregivers aid the person with dementia in performing daily activities and engaging in favorite pastimes.

What qualifications do CaraVita caregivers possess?

I always say you cannot train a heart. We hire those who have a heart for caregiving, are empathetic and are certified nursing assistants. If they are not certified, we offer our CaraVita Academy, which is a state-licensed C.N.A. training site, and eight hours of dementia training and coaching.

How does a daily routine benefit those with dementia?

A reliable routine minimizes the wandering and anxiety associated with short term memory loss. CaraVita caregivers help their clients through a functional schedule that includes waking at a time they desire, moving through old routines of dressing, eating, personal care, enjoying favorite pastimes and winding down with regular routines prior to bed.

What resources are available to both family members and dementia patients?

CaraVita has monthly Dementia Training classes, and we offer the services of a Dementia Specialist, geriatric care manager, nurses, therapists and social workers. Our website, the Georgia Alzheimer's Association and are also great resources.



Beth Cayce
CaraVita Home Care

For the past 15 years, Beth Cayce has been providing in-home care to more than 16,000 seniors throughout the Metro Atlanta area. Cayce's vision in founding CaraVita Home Care was to utilize the strengths of a seasoned health care team to coach in-home caregivers and families in best practices of senior care. Her team of geriatric care managers, nurses, therapists, a social worker, and dementia specialist not only provide support to CaraVita's 200 in-home caregivers, but also provide consulting and management services to regional senior living communities. For this work, Cayce was awarded a Life Time Achievement/Leadership award
by GSLA.

Sponsored by: CaraVita Home Care | 648 Mimosa Boulevard | Roswell, GA 30075
Phone: (770) 643-1712 |



Monday, 24 November 2014 16:37

Social Security: Your Questions Answered

Clients commonly ask the following questions about Social Security:




a. Before full retirement age - $15,480 or else the benefits are reduced.

b. The year of full retirement age - $41,400 or else the benefits are reduced.

c. After full retirement age – no reduction in benefits based on earnings.

Most likely up to 85% of the income that you collect will be included in your taxable income. This does not mean an 85% tax rate!



a. "Phase In" Strategy

b. "File & Suspend" Strategy

c. Early Election vs. Full Retirement

d. Spousal benefits


No, you should contact an advisor to review your specific facts. Your age, your spouse's age, and your incomes are some of the main factors the advisor will need to know.




c. Meet with your financial advisor. This information is based on 2014 figures. You should consult your financial and tax advisors prior to making decisions.

Securities offered through Triad Advisors, Inc. Member FINRA/SIPC.



Laura K. Schilling, JD, CPA, CFP®, CSA
Financial Innovations, LLC

Laura Schilling isn't your typical financial planner. She is also a world traveler who has been to Asia, Africa, Europe, and Israel. Laura is an active member in the community, a mother of two, and a champion for each of the working mothers she employs. As principal and founder of Financial Innovations, LLC, she staffs her firm with stay-at-home moms who work to meet the needs of their clients around the globe.

Sponsored by: Financial Innovations, LLC | 6111 Peachtree Dunwoody Road, Suite F101 | Atlanta, GA 30328  |  Phone: (404) 458-0065 | Fax: (404) 393-3063 | Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. |


Monday, 24 November 2014 16:19

Facial Liposuction

Options for a Youthful Jaw Line
One of the most important features of a good looking face is a smooth, well-defined jaw line. If someone has never had a clearly defined jaw line, or has lost it due to the aging process, there are several options available to help get that chiseled look.

Younger patients are often great candidates for facial liposuction. This is the permanent removal of fat cells and it is much more predictable than external lasers to "melt" fat. Facial liposuction is performed through small incisions behind each ear and under the chin. Younger patients generally have excellent skin tone so the skin reshapes to the new, enhanced contour. The procedure usually takes between 30-45 minutes to perform. It can be performed under local or twilight anesthesia depending on patient preferences.

DSC 5382For the in-between patient who has some puffiness under the chin and jaw line but has skin that is beginning to relax, ThermiRF can be combined with the liposuction procedure. Many different skin tightening procedures currently exist. It is important to note that they are limited in their effectiveness by how much energy can be passed through the skin, without causing the skin to burn. ThermiRF is an exciting technology in which a probe is inserted under the skin and is capable of delivering a custom amount of radio frequency energy for the patient. Since the probe is placed under the skin, more energy can be safely delivered creating new collagen and tighter skin. Patients can have these procedures performed in the office under local or twilight anesthesia. ThermiRF of the face and neck generally takes about 45 minutes. When combined with liposuction, the procedure lasts about an hour.

For the patient who has loose facial skin resulting in jowls or fullness in the neck, a facelift is generally the most appropriate procedure. As the face ages, many of the layers (bone, fat, skin) are involved. For many patients, the face loses the youthful, triangular shape and becomes more square. Often liposuction is performed as part of the facelift to help sculpt these areas. The supporting layers of the face are tightened and the excess skin is permanently removed. This procedure typically takes 1.5 – 2 hours to perform under a twilight or general anesthesia.

The best solution for each individual patient begins with a consultation. Please mention this article to receive a complimentary consultation.



Q & A with Dr. Maloney

What is facial liposuction?
As adults, we do not grow more fat cells. Our existing fat cells swell as we gain weight, and shrink as we lose weight. Facial liposuction is the permanent removal of fat cells. The procedure can be performed alone, or in conjunction with a variety of other procedures such as chin implants, nose surgery, eyelid surgery, or facelift surgery. Facial liposuction generally provides a dramatic improvement in the appearance of the neck and jaw line.

Who is a candidate for facial liposuction?
Typically, younger patients are the best facial liposuction candidates due to their good skin tone. Facial liposuction is also an excellent choice for men and African American patients due to the fact that their skin is thicker and the procedure is performed using small incisions.

Rhinoplasty with Facial Liposuction









AwardsDr. Maloney is an award-winning, internationally recognized, double board certified facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon. He is the founder of the world-renowned Maloney Center for Facial Plastic Surgery located in Atlanta. Dr. Maloney is a National Trainer for Allergan, the maker of Botox Cosmetic,® Juvederm,® Voluma,® and Latisse.® He instructs doctors from all over the world on the latest facial cosmetic surgery procedures and has been regularly featured in national media including Discovery Health, The Learning Channel, CNN Headline News, ABC News and more.

Sponsored by: The Maloney Center for Facial Plastic Surgery | 6111 Peachtree Dunwoody Road, Building E, Suite 201 | Atlanta, GA 30328 | Phone: (770) 504-6243 |



Monday, 24 November 2014 16:02

Five Tips to Curb Holiday Weight Gain

December is finally here and so are many of your favorite holiday treats! You've worked hard this year, and this month just seems to be the appropriate time to enjoy great food and wonderful company. But the big question is, how do you have fun and enjoy those tasty holiday treats without gaining weight? Well, it's possible! Execute these five easy tips and start the New Year without the extra holiday weight gain.

1. Stay active

For many, fall and winter months are the two seasons where people seem to taper off on their workout routines. Step into the New Year without the weight gain by going to the gym, popping in your favorite workout video or attending exercise classes regularly.

Aim for three to four days of cardio and two to three days of 20-30 minutes of weight training. When you finish, you will be glad you did!

0012. Monitor your weight

Treat this month like any other when it comes to your fitness regimen. First, determine whether or not you would like to maintain your current weight or lose a few pounds. Usually December is the perfect time to maintain your current weight while you enjoy the holiday celebrations.
Second, be sure to weigh yourself and track your weight weekly to keep those unwanted pounds off.

3. Be selective with what you eat

It's common for food to be the focus of holiday gatherings. In order to avoid overeating, eat regular healthy meals throughout the day and use this holiday season as the perfect time to engage in good conversation, games, dancing and other festive activities.

For dessert lovers, choose only one serving of your favorite dish to satisfy your sweet craving. Taking several bites of all desserts will only significantly increase your calorie intake.

4. Decorate your desk with fruit

Some of the best treats during the holiday season are just within arm's reach either on your desk, your co-workers' desks or a common area in the office. In order to distance yourself from any possible holiday weight gain, keep fresh fruit handy instead.

5. Send leftovers home with the guest after the holiday celebration!

It's quite OK to enjoy your favorite foods during the holiday season, but the key is to never over indulge. The macaroni, sweet potato casserole, dressing, red velvet cake, pound cake and banana pudding taste so good, but these high-calorie foods should only be enjoyed in moderation.

And while the thought of eating leftovers for a few days after the party sounds great, these high-fat/high-calorie foods will only work against you. When hosting a party, be sure to send the leftovers with your guest. With all of the food out of the house you will avoid those holiday pounds and start the new year with a bang!
Happy holidays, and cheers to a healthy and fit holiday season!

Lisa Tanker-Potts
Fitness and Lifestyle Expert


Lifestyle and Fitness Expert

Lisa Tanker-Potts is the owner of Boutique Body Fitness Studio located in the Grant Park District of Atlanta. Lisa is considered the guru of fitness for women seeking to enhance their lives through fitness and has helped thousands of women achieve healthy lifestyles and get the physique of their dreams.

BnALisa's trademark is her positive attitude, warm energy and her expertise in training women of all ages. Lisa's upbeat spirit and ability to make every client feel exclusive has quickly propelled her to be a top sought after fitness trainer, speaker and lifestyle expert.

After earning a Master of Business and Master of Health Administration and working eight years in pharmaceutical sales industry, Lisa decided to follow her passion for helping women to get fit and healthy and became a fitness trainer.

Lisa has been a regular guest on CBS Better Mornings Atlanta, on the Jennifer Keitt 104.1FM Show and on the Atlanta Journal and Constitutions Lifestyle Blog. Lisa has also been a featured speaker at the BGR National Convention, Transforming Women Entrepreneurs Conference and the Jennifer Keitt Empowerment Conference.


Sponsored by: Boutique Body Fitness  |  650 Hamilton Ave SE, Suite D  |  Atlanta, GA 30312
Phone: (678) 568-9217  |



Monday, 24 November 2014 15:54

Sexual Health

Aging is inevitable, and if you are lucky, you will live a long, happy and sexually healthy life. Gone are the days when the thought of our aging parents was accompanied by a loveless, sexless, grumpy duo in rocking chairs. Today, more mature members of the population are more active than ever, both physically and sexually. They continue to take on new challenges and this includes demanding that medical advances keep up with their healthy sexual appetites.

It is true that along with aging, the ovaries transition and make less and less estrogen, progesterone and testosterone. Along with these hormonal changes come decreased libido and vaginal changes that can lead to vaginal dryness, thinning of the tissues and extreme discomfort during intercourse.
These, along with other things, such as changes in body image, can lead to difficulties and major challenges in maintaining healthy sexual relations as we age.

Thanks to medical advances leading to improved health care, as well as a baby boomer generation that refused to take the changes associated with aging "lying down," we arrive at a wonderful place, where the world is your oyster when it comes to available options to combat what was once felt to be inevitable.

Below I will cover a few options for women:
There are many hormonal and nonhormonal options available.

Nonhormonal options for the vaginal changes associated with menopause like vitamin E and olive oil can be used to perform perineal massage.

Don Quai, Evening Primrose, Valerian Root, Chasteberry, Black Cohosh and Maca Powder can also be used to combat the changes of menopause, which can lead to a less satisfying sexual experience.
Osphena is an oral nonhormonal medication taken daily to effect changes in the vaginal tissues which ease vaginal dryness and the painful intercourse that can accompany aging.

Hormonal Replacement Therapy - This subject can alone take more than the space and time allowed in this article to cover. They can be delivered in a number of ways: pill, patches and topicals for systemic relief of symptoms, and vaginal remedies for local relief of symptoms.

Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy is extremely popular as it provides a more customized approach to deliver depleted hormones. A type of bioidentical hormones known as the pellet can do away with decreased libido, boost energy, eliminate mental fogginess, increase lean body mass, enhance mood and reverse the vaginal symptoms associated with aging.

Vaginal Rejuvenation is a series of cosmetic procedures to help get your vagina in the best condition possible. Any of these procedures can, according to your wishes and desires, correct surgically (or medically using fillers and PFP) many vaginal or labial concerns expressed by women.

Maintaining your health is the most important personal step you can take to maintain a healthy sex life. This includes a healthy diet, getting plenty of rest and keeping chronic conditions under the care of a physician.

Exercise has been associated with increasing your "feel good" hormones associated with libido. Weight loss can enhance your inner confidence and give you a sexual boost.

Open communication with your provider in a nonjudgmental and nonintimidating environment is very important to your ability to feel comfortable discussing this sensitive issue.

A stable and loving relationship is extremely important to maintaining a healthy sex life.

Call the professionals at Innovative Women's HealthCare Solutions to discuss both hormonal and nonhormonal options and other healthy lifestyle changes you can make to make your later years hotter than ever. At Innovative, we believe that with aging, the best is yet to come.


Melinda Miller-Thrasher, MD, FACOG
Innovative Women's HealthCare Solutions (IWHCS)

Buckhead, Midtown,and Smyrna/Vinings

Melinda Miller Thrasher is a native of NYC and attended Cornell University, Mt. Sinai and NYU for her residency training. Her expertise includes fibroids and minimally invasive surgical procedures to treat fibroids. She is on staff at Emory University Hospital and Piedmont Hospital. Dr. Miller-Thrasher has been selected as one of Atlanta's Top Doctors each year since 2009 as listed in Atlanta Magazine, one of the Gynecologists You Love (Essence Magazine) and she is a Patients' Choice Award recipient. She is also a member of the WebMD medical review board. Her new book, "The Innovative Women's Guide To Managing Fibroids Without Hysterectomy" will be available in late 2014.

Sponsored by: Innovative Women’s HealthCare Solutions  |  Phone: (404) 549-1327  |  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   |


Monday, 24 November 2014 15:18

Tailor-Made Treatment for Atlanta’s Kids

Driving kids to and fro is a routine activity for metro Atlanta parents. That said, most moms and dads don't trust their children's safety to the standard adult-sized car seat. They carefully make sure they have the right seat for the right age, size and weight.

That's because parents know that whether it's an infant's five-point harness or a 9-year-old's booster seat, the right fit could save their child's life.

The same principle holds true when children need surgery because of enlarged or infected tonsils and or adenoids, says Dr. James Thomsen, Medical Director of Otolaryngology (ENT) at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta.

Having a tonsillectomy can be straightforward – it's the second most common pediatric surgery, with more than 500,000 performed each year in the United States.* But straightforward does not mean without risk. And the best way to reduce risk is to make sure that pediatric patients have access to the equipment and expertise tailor-made for them. "Children are not little adults," says Dr. Thomsen. "And when you're dealing with anesthesia, surgery, or nursing care, you really want a medical environment that has the experience and tools to deal the unique issues of children."

Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, the only dedicated pediatric hospital in Georgia, can offer such specialized care, with multiple sizes of equipment and precise levels of treatment designed for kids. Breathing tubes and dosage, for example, for anesthesia is highly precise because Children's has to be able to adjust from a 4-pound preemie to a 250-pound 17-year-old athlete with a sport injury.

Children's also offers "kid-focused care," including child life specialists and therapy dogs to help make the entire family as comfortable as possible.

Of course, the most important reason parents should ask for a pediatric-trained surgeon is the same reason they have the right car seat – to prepare for a day when things are not routine. Pediatric-trained surgeons have gone through special training to care for kids. And, because Children's handles such a high volume of cases, there is little that its pediatric medical teams have not seen – providing a safety net of knowledge if something goes awry. "We can deal with simple problems in complex children – children who have multiple health issues," Dr. Thomsen said. "And we can deal with complex issues in healthy children." The vast majority of kids never need such extraordinary care – just like they might not need the multiple locks that keep them snug in their car seat. But if a child does need a tonsillectomy or an adenoidectomy, Dr. Thomsen wants to remind parents they always have a choice. "Be empowered. Be a good advocate," he says. "And ask and expect the specialized pediatric care your child deserves."

Medicine 1-2-3

1. Tonsils are located on the sides of the throat, and adenoids are located inside the breathing passage in the back of the nose.

2. A tonsillectomy removes the tonsils, and an adenoidectomy removes adenoids. Typically, the procedures are done because of chronic infections or sleep apnea.

3. More than 500,000 tonsillectomies – the second most common pediatric surgery- are done each year, although that number has drastically dropped within the past decade. Adenoidectomies are often done in tandem with tonsillectomies or alone to treat nasal obstruction, chronic sinusitis or decrease the nose as a trigger for recurrent ear infections.

*Cullen KA, Hall MJ, Golosinskiy A. Ambulatory Surgery in the United States, 2006. National Health Statistics reports no. 11, revised. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics; 2009.

Sponsored by: Children's Healthcare of Atlanta | Phone: (404) 785-4676 |


Friday, 21 November 2014 20:54

Andi and Josh: Atlanta’s Best Love Story

When ABC's "The Bachelorette" featured Atlanta native Andi Dorfman for its 10th season, we at Best Self Atlanta eagerly tuned in. Not only was Andi an assistant district attorney in Fulton County before the show, but by the end of the season, she was engaged to the baseball-playing bachelor from Brookhaven, Josh Murray. The two seemed very much in love, but as is the way with reality TV, the camera doesn't tell all. Josh and Andi sat down with Best Self Atlanta to give us the full picture of their life together now that the cameras have stopped rolling.

Talk of the Town
As soon as the final episode of "The Bachelorette" aired in July, Josh and Andi hit the town together and haven't stopped. Andi says her favorite part of sharing a city is showing Josh around, since he originally hails from Tampa, Florida. "I love taking him to new restaurants," she says, particularly Decatur's unique offerings. "Our date night spots are usually somewhere good to eat. We eat sushi probably twice a week."

001-SidebarWhen they want a night in, the couple regularly enjoys downtime with Andi's family. "We see my family probably once a week. I grew up having dinner with my family every Sunday," she says, a tradition they do their best to continue. "Our travel schedules don't always allow it, but I'd say we see them once a week on average, which is really nice for us."

Their time together in the same city has helped them get to know each other even better than they could on the show. Before now, Andi says, "I didn't know what a clean freak he is!" And Josh has learned plenty about Andi too. "I have learned that she's a tremendous cook, that she can't fall asleep at night unless she's watching TV, and that she likes to sew her clothes constantly – she's great with designing things."

001-ANDIEnJOSHWorking It Out
Andi hasn't returned to work yet – their busy schedules make a 9 to 5 nearly impossible right now – but she says, "I miss my job and being a lawyer. It's something I would like to go back to once everything settles down." Her role as an assistant district attorney always felt like a logical fit, chosen while Andi was in law school at Wake Forest. "I like to think that the career chose me," she says. "I was in law school, and I worked for the DA's office one summer and was just like, 'This is it for me.' I had a great boss who took me under her wing, and it was a no-brainer."

Part of the perfect fit, Andi says, was that the job allowed her to serve the community she grew up in. "At times it was hard because you don't always see an immediate impact of your work, but over time, it becomes more and more apparent." Plus, the varied daily schedule kept her on her toes and intellectually stimulated.

002-SidebarHer demanding career and top notch education even equipped her for her experience on "The Bachelorette" by honing "my BS meter," she laughs. "I think my education helped me to be as practical as possible in what could be perceived as an impractical situation." The one thing it couldn't prepare her for, though, was the media attention. "I think, unless you grow up in that lifestyle, nothing can prepare you for it."

Despite their busy schedules and media attention, Josh is moving forward with the next steps in his own career. From baseball player to financial advisor, Josh now leads a team in direct sales with a company called AdvoCare, which caters to athletes and other health-conscious consumers. His interest with the company originally began through his brother

Aaron Murray, former Bulldogs quarterback who was drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs this year. "Once Aaron became an endorser for AdvoCare after he graduated from UGA, I decided to start trying some of their products," Josh says, which range from herbal cleanses and supplements to energy bars and workout recovery drinks. After feeling their positive effects, Josh wanted to help spread the word. "The most enjoyable part of working with AdvoCare is that I see people's lives being changed for the better each and every day," he says, as they begin to live healthier, more active lives. "There is nothing more rewarding than helping others. It makes me a happy man."

For Better or For Worse
That desire to help others, along with their newfound place in the spotlight, has positioned Andi and Josh to take their philanthropy to the next level. In the months since "The Bachelorette," the couple has appeared at Jeffrey Fashion Cares, The Pink Agenda's Toast to a Cure and many more national and local charity events. These opportunities have only stoked their enthusiasm for giving back. Josh says, "We love helping with underprivileged children and trying to make the world a better place for them to live."

This cause is particularly dear to Andi's heart too. She says, "I have seen firsthand the effects of at-risk youth in regard to crime, education and overall well-being. It's really important to give those children an opportunity to live a great life and to contribute in a positive way to our community." Andi says she also wants to help empower other women. "As a woman who was taught to be independent, I know how important it is for women to have careers and have the tools to be independent."

These days, founded on the common priorities of caring for the health of their community and themselves, their relationship is going strong. The couple will soon be scoping out the Atlanta real estate market to find a place they – and Josh's English Bulldog – can all call home. As they look back on their whirlwind year and ahead to a 2015 that will bring a wedding and maybe even an addition to their family, Andi says those shared values are the key to their relationship's success. She says, "No matter what or who comes into our life, at the end of the day, we are a team."


Friday, 21 November 2014 20:30

Caring for Aging Parents

These days, your mother struggles to remember small parts of her daily routine. Maybe your dad seems like himself, but he can't manage the daily task of cooking dinner. Or perhaps your parents are still doing great on their own, but they need some backup navigating the financial side of retirement.
No matter the details, the common denominator is an aging parent. Not only is this stage of life new for them, but caring for them is new territory for you too – after all, you're used to them having the answers.

To help you navigate your new role and your parents' changing needs, we've compiled a list of local resources that will come in handy. Their informative websites and top notch services can ensure that you and your parents get the care and support you need.

Your parents need . . .
In-home care. Your parents are still fairly active, but they could use an extra hand with errands or housekeeping.

Reach out to . . .
Synergy HomeCare. This organization provides non-medical home care. They can help with things like meal preparation, housekeeping, medication reminders and transportation to errands. They can also provide pleasant conversation and companionship, which are helpful for overall well-being and quality of life. Details:

Your parents need . . .
An accessible home. Sometimes your parents may require modifications to their existing living space or additions, such as ramps, in order to be able to maneuver the house more easily.

Reach out to . . .
A Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist (CAPS). The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) worked with AARP to develop a training designation for remodelers and contractors: the Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist (CAPS). These specialists can do a room-by-room assessment of your parents' home and make recommendations for modifications, such as increased lighting, additional railings, walk-in bathtubs or showers, ramps and even home elevators.
Details: Visit and browse the NAHB CAPS directory, which lists more than 50 certified specialists in the Atlanta area.

Your parents need . . .
Transportation. Past a certain point, it's safer to let someone else take the wheel, but you aren't always free to drive Mom or Dad. It helps to have an extra car and an attentive driver to get your parents to their errands or a special occasion, like a family wedding, and safely back home.

001-SidebarReach out to . . .
Atlanta Senior Assistant. Karen Adams created Atlanta Senior Assistant solely to provide companionship and chauffeur services for seniors in the Atlanta area. Many other care organizations may include transportation among their offered services, and the National Center on Senior Transportation can provide additional information and creative solutions.

Your parents need . . .
Healthy meals. Rising food costs, a lessened appetite and even simple forgetfulness can cause seniors to miss out on healthy, regular meals. Even if they do eat regularly, studies show that on average, seniors get too many of their calories from fat, alcohol and added sugars.

Reach out to . . .
Project Open Hand. This charitable organization provides freshly cooked, nutritious meals and snacks to a variety of clients, including seniors. Whether your parents need a specially formulated menu (such as the diabetic menu, the dialysis menu, the low-fat menu or a variety of meatless menus) or standard meal options, Open Hand offers many choices. Clients can also customize the number of meals they receive: as few as two per week, and as many as 21. Your parents may qualify for Open Hand's free services, but if they are not eligible, Open Hand does offer an option to pay for the service and still enjoy the convenience and nutritional benefits.

Your parents need . . .
Hearing or vision services. When your parents consistently ask you to repeat yourself, respond with shorter answers than normal or struggle to carry on their usual telephone conversations, they may be struggling with hearing loss. Additionally, risk of eye conditions such as glaucoma, cataracts, diabetic retinopathy and macular degeneration all increase with age.

Reach out to . . .
Georgia Council for the Hearing Impaired (GACHI). Through this statewide nonprofit organization, seniors can receive special equipment to make their telephones more hard-of-hearing-friendly. Find out if your parents are eligible and apply online.

Omni Eye Services of Atlanta. Specializing in the treatment of age-related vision problems, this practice is full of board-certified surgeons and optometrists who can ensure that your parents will be in experienced hands.

002-SidebarYour parents need . . .
To stay engaged. Several local therapeutic practices can keep seniors mentally active and help them cope with the transitions of aging.

Reach out to . . .
Happy Tails Pets. Since 1991, Happy Tails has been taking volunteers and their pets to Atlanta senior centers for animal-assisted therapy and activity. The organization's president, Linda Bolterstein, shares, "We have experienced firsthand the incredible effect that pet therapy has on that population." Throwing a ball for a puppy can help with motor skills, brushing a cat can help with coordination, and the cheerful presence of any pet can help combat depression and loneliness. Details:

Mindful Transitions. Beyond the needs of social engagement, seniors also need a chance to process the transitions of aging. As with many life changes, aging can prompt feelings of worry, depression, low energy, grief and more. Mindful Transitions is a group practice that provides counseling of this type to seniors. "Once clients begin services, we typically see them become more involved in their new communities with peers and activities, and their families report improved mood and general well being," says Linda Jalbert, the practice's owner. A physician's order is not necessary to set up a visit with a therapist, and Medicare covers more than half of each session.

000-Bogey-Rugby-WorkingYour parents need . . .
Financial support. Updating documents and protecting assets in today's technological world can be a challenge.

Reach out to . . .
Financial Innovations, LLC. Owner Laura Schilling offers a senior scam and identity theft seminar to arm seniors against today's frequent online scams. She can also guide you and your parents through a discussion about their investments and Last Will and Testament so you stay informed.

Your parents need . . .
You to understand what they're going through.
This transition is tough on them too, particularly if one or both of your parents has Alzheimer's or dementia.

Reach out to . . .
Second Wind Dreams. This organization offers a Virtual Dementia Tour, which guides you through completing simple tasks that simulate the challenges of dementia. Using the loss of fine motor skills, increased confusion, pain of arthritis and other difficulties, the virtual
experience will show you just how tough it is to be in a senior's shoes. Once you understand firsthand, you can approach this phase of life and your new caregiving role with more compassion, patience and love.

Atlanta Home Care Partners, Inc. This full-service, family-owned and
operated non-medical home agency's area of expertise is caring for those who have been diagnosed with cognitive impairment such as Alzheimer's disease.

Your parents need . . .
You to take care of yourself. No matter how much help they need during this phase of life, they're still your parents, which means they want you to be happy and healthy too. The task of caring for dependent family members takes a mental, emotional and physical toll, so don't neglect your own needs during this time.

Reach out to . . .
Illumination Counseling and Coaching. Latasha Matthews, LPC, offers the Adult Children of Aging Parents Support Group beginning this month. The group will meet in person each month and will also offer an online webinar to discuss coping strategies, uncertainty about the future and other challenges that come hand in hand with the shifting roles of caring for your parents. The cost is just $25 per class.


Editorial Resources
Atlanta Home Care Partners –
Atlanta Senior Assistant –
Financial Innovations, LLC –
Georgia Council for the Hearing Impaired (GACHI) –
Happy Tails Pets –
Illumination Counseling and Coaching –
National Association of Home Builders –
National Center on Senior Transportation –
Omni Eye Services of Atlanta –
Project Open Hand –
Second Wind Dreams –
Synergy HomeCare –