A.C.H.I.E.V.E. Research Program Promotes Healthy Aging

HealthyAging

By Kathleen Hayden

Looking for a way to get involved in the research community? Looking to age successfully equipped with tools and information? Have some hearing loss? ACHIEVE may be the study for you!

ACHIEVE (Aging and Cognitive Health Evaluation in Elders Randomized Trial) is a three-year clinical trial that is investigating the impact of two programs that may promote healthy aging and cognitive health in older adults. The programs are a Successful Aging Education program and the Hearing Program.

The Successful Aging Education Program explores different topics and categories related to healthy aging. These topics are focused on managing health conditions and making lifestyle choices to maximize healthy aging. Topics include high blood pressure, diabetes, smoking, physical activity, and many others. Participants will have individual, personalized sessions with a health educator to address goals and concerns and to develop actionable strategies to achieve a healthy lifestyle.

“The Successful Aging program addresses many areas of healthcare (diabetes, blood pressure, physical activity, etc.). It has been good for me to take a better stock of myself so I’m not dependent on someone else later in life and to have independent living.”
– Successful Aging Participant

Hearing loss is very common in older adults; nearly two thirds of adults aged 70 or older have some level of hearing loss. However, less than 15 percent of these individuals use hearing aids. The Hearing Program in ACHIEVE focuses on improving hearing loss and communication with hearing aids, rehabilitative strategies, and hearing assistive devices. Participants receive individualized sessions with an audiologist, and will have the opportunity to develop goals and target personal circumstances that may be affected by a hearing deficit.

“I’ll never forget the first time my husband wore his hearing aids. He walked out and paused and said,’ I haven’t heard the birds chirping in a long time.’ It’s been a good thing for both of us.”
– Hearing Program Participant

To participate in ACHIEVE, you must meet the following criteria:

You are between 70 and 84 years of age

You live in the community

You are fluent in English

You do not currently have a diagnosis of dementia

You have not used a hearing aid in the past year

Eligible participants must be willing to be randomly assigned to either the Successful Aging Education program or the Hearing Program. All ACHIEVE participants have the opportunity to receive hearing aids and the Successful Aging program once their respective program finishes after three years. Compensation is provided for each completed visit. Transportation is available upon request.

To determine eligibility, call the ACHIEVE study at 336-716-7282. We look forward to helping you ACHIEVE your goals!

Kathleen Hayden is an Associate Professor in the Department of Social Sciences and Health Policy at the Wake Forest School of Medicine. She also heads the Forsyth County site of the ACHIEVE Study. For more information, visit AchieveStudy.org.

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