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The Newtown Parent Connection is planning two free information sessions, “Living With(OUT) Pain,” to help seniors, their caregivers, and community members better understand how opioids and opioid addiction are impacting seniors in Newtown.
Parent Connection founder Dorrie Carolan told The Newtown Bee that she was motivated to bring in an expert on the subject after being contacted by the adult children of several local senior residents.
“I put these two programs together based on calls from [loved ones] who were concerned that their parents were doctor shopping because they are addicted to opioids,” Ms Carolan explained.
Stephanie R. Paulmeno, MS, RN, NHA, CPH, CDP, CCM, from Communities 4 Action will discuss the opioid epidemic and its impact on the senior population.
Communities 4 Action promotes healthy choices and addressing substance abuse, problem gambling, and other risky behaviors, and promoting mental wellness in the communities of Darien, Greenwich, New Canaan, and Stamford.
The first session is Friday, May 4, at the Newtown Senior Center, 14 Riverside Road, at 10 am, followed by a lunch at noon. Reservations are required for this session and can be made by calling 203-270-4310 on or before April 27.
The second session is Tuesday, May 15, at 6:30 pm, in the Newtown High School lecture hall. Light snacks will be served. Registration is requested by calling 203-270-4612 — but it is not required.
Ms Paulmeno’s presentations will cover pain management and alternatives, warning signs of opioid dependence, risks of current medications, the safe storage and disposal of meds, how to communicate with a doctor when being prescribed medication, managing medication and home care, and the “Beers List” of medication that could be causing harm.
The Beers Criteria for Potentially Inappropriate Medication Use in Older Adults, commonly called the Beers List, are guidelines for health care professionals to help improve the safety of prescribing medications for older adults.
“The program at the Senior Center is really great, especially since Stephanie will review over the counter meds that could be harmful to seniors,” Ms Carolan said. “The Parent Connection can provide CEUs at both programs, however the program on May 4 at the Senior Center requires registration since we will be serving lunch.”
For details on this and other Parent Connection programs, visit newtownparentconnection.org