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Join me on the road…

During the next few months I'll be travelling to many cities in Canada to talk about heart disease and other medical issues. I hope I have a chance to meet many of you at the following events:

All of Dr. Gifford Jones lectures are free and on a first come, first serve basis and there is no registration (unless otherwise noted). Arrive early as seating may be limited.

Tuesday September 23
ETOBICOKE, ON – LECTURE – 7:00 pm
Better Living, 1500 Royal York Road
To register please call the store at 416-249-1895

Tuesday September 30
UXBRIDGE, ON - LECTURE – 1:00 pm
Uxbridge Seniors Centre, 75 Marietta Street
Sponsored by Today’s Natural Solutions, to register please contact them at 905-862-3270.

Tuesday October 2
OWEN SOUND, ON – MEET & GREET – 10:30 am – 12:30 pm
Nutrition House, 1350 16th Street East, Heritage Place Mall

Tuesday October 7
PENTICTON, BC - LECTURE – 7:00 pm
Cleland Theatre, 325 Power Street
Sponsored by Nature’s Fare Markets, to register please contact them at 250-492-7763.

Wednesday October 8
KAMLOOPS, BC - LECTURE – 7:00 pm
Coast Kamloops Hotel & Conference Centre
Sponsored by Nature’s Fare Markets, to register please contact them at 250-314-9560.

Thursday October 9
LANGLEY, BC - LECTURE – 7:00 pm
Nature’s Fare Markets, #120 – 19880 Langley Bypass 200th St. Access
To register please contact the store at 778-278-1300.

Thursday October 16
BEAMSVILLE, ON – MEET & GREET – 12:00 – 2:00 pm
The Health Post, 4971 King St

Friday October 17
HUNTSVILLE, ON - LECTURE – 7:00 pm
Algonquin Theatre, 37 Main Street East
Presented by The Great Vine, to register please contact them at 705-789-3737 .

How to Stay Safe in Hospital

Luckily, I've only been admitted to hospital for surgery on two occasions. But when it happened I had serious concerns. The big one was, will I develop a complication during my hospital stay that I didn't have on arrival? So, what can be done to prevent this from occurring? First, I choose my sur...

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Do Seniors Indulge in Sex?

One University survey recently revealed that 80 per cent of students thought their parents didn’t have any “amour”. Talk about youthful denial! Society in general seems to believe that seniors just pull up the covers and fall asleep. But sex doesn’t fade from the radar at age 60, 80 or even in the nursing home. Besides, the Danes have discovered that sex even decreases the cost of medical care! North Americans should take note.

Sure, sexual activity changes with age. You may no longer hang from the chandelier while having sex. But for some couples, slowing down and being less acrobatic enhances the experience. Besides, 50 percent of people over 50 are either widowed or divorced and in need of “tender loving care”.

Years ago a song titled “Saturday night is the loneliest night of the week” was popular. But at Thorupgaarden nursing home in Copenhagen, Denmark, it’s not lonely anymore.

I couldn’t stop reading about this nursing home. I just wish I had been a fly on the wall when staff were debating one earth-shaking proposal. They decided in their infinite wisdom that pornography had a more calming effect on seniors than Prozac. So every Saturday night pornographic videos are available on the home’s internal program.

But before my proper readers go into a state of shock, I’d suggest they sit down to hear the next decision. If some residents continue to feel lonely and remain depressed after viewing pornographic videos, there’s no need to despair. These residents can go the next step and request that a prostitute be allowed to visit. Wow, can you imagine that happening in this country?

But the Danes believe such measures are logical. A spokesperson for the Danish Seniors Lobby Group says pornography is healthier, more economic and easier to use than medication. If you walk into many senior facilities on this continent, you will witness seniors half-drugged, depressed and immobile. I believe she has a point.

So how has this unorthodox treatment been accepted by the Danes and residents? Maj-Britt, a department head at Thorupgaarden, says that sexuality is often overlooked in nursing homes. Moreover, there’s only been one complaint since the video program started three years ago. Danish gerontologists (those who specialize in caring for the elderly) also agree with this practice.

What about political reaction? Kudos to the Danish government which issued a report confirming that sexuality is an integral part of life for both seniors and disabled people. It agreed with the caregivers.

As many readers know, I believe that alcohol in moderation is a beneficial medicine for many patient symptoms. And that a pub in every hospital would do more good than a cartload of the pills prescribed for seniors. A wee tipple along with occasional sex might cut down on the mandatory nightly sleeping pill that whacks patients into never-never land.

Of course I’m against child pornography. I’m also convinced that the general morality of this nation has gone to hell. But I believe we should get over the tendency to label seniors who are interested in sex as “dirty old men” or “dirty old women”.

No doubt I have shocked some readers. But at least this column may have kept you from dozing off. Remember, it’s the job of a journalist to make people think, possibly remind them that we should never ask for whom the bell tolls. One day some of us may be sitting alone in a lonely room looking at four blank walls. No doubt we will be bored as hell and desperate for a little excitement. We might even conclude that the Danes are much more realistic and that a pornographic movie on a Saturday night wasn’t such a bad idea.

Since I’ve never sat on the fence when it comes to contentious issues, would I apply for a bed at Thorupgaarden in my dotage? Yes. It seems to be a pretty lively place. Besides, when my time comes I’d prefer to be with a lady-of-the-night and a glass of Chardonnay than falling out of my rocking chair.

Will this ever happen in this country? Hell will freeze over first.

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