True or False
Risky Behaviours
When to Consult a Doctor

Being alone and loneliness are the same thing.

A) True

B) False

Answer: B

The main difference between being alone and being lonely is that lonely people aren’t happy with their situation. Being alone is a state of being. Being lonely is an emotional response to it. You can be alone and very happy, but when you’re lonely, you long for a change.

Loneliness is detrimental to good health. If you feel lonely, do something about it, one small step at a time: call an acquaintance, start a conversation at the cash register line, join a group, etc.


Aging can cause high blood pressure. Untreated, high blood pressure can lead to:

A) Stroke and heart problems

B) Brain problems

C) Eyes and kidney problems

D) A and B

E) All of the above

Answer: E

Untreated high blood pressure can lead to disability. It is important to have it checked regularly.

The Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada recommends the DASH Diet: rich in fruit, vegetables and low-fat protein, this diet can lower blood pressure within two weeks.


The brain benefits from: 

A) Physical exercise

B) Mental exercise

C) A and B

D) None of above

Answer: C

Physical exercise promotes blood to the brain which helps reduce the loss of brain cells.

Mental exercise (crosswords, reading, stimulating conversations, games, etc.) stimulates the brain and improves memory.

Start small: walk around the block or read a magazine article. Then gradually increase the activities you like.


Dopamine, the feel-good hormone, is produced by the brain. How can you increase your dopamine levels naturally?

A) Exercise

B) Eating food like bananas, oatmeal, sunflower seeds and avocado

C) Listening to music

D) Sunlight exposure

E) A and D

F) All of the above 

Answer: F

Dopamine is an important brain chemical that influences your mood and feelings of reward and motivation. It helps regulate body movements as well.

Note: People with low levels of dopamine are more likely to use and abuse alcohol, drugs or food as these also release dopamine in the body.  Not surprisingly, this can contribute to a cycle of addictions.


When should you consult a doctor for urinary incontinence?

A) At the first episode

B) If it becomes frequent

C) If it affects my quality of life

D) B and C

E) Never, it's not a disease

Answer: D

Incontinence may:

- indicate a more-serious underlying condition

- limit your social interactions and lead to isolation

- increase your risk of falls while rushing to the toilet

Frequent urination and nocturnal urination are also more common for older people.


There are no known ways to prevent age-related hearing loss.

A) True

B) False

Answer: A

However, you can prevent noise-induced hearing loss by protecting your ears from very loud and lasting sounds (music, firearms, snowmobiles, leaf blowers, etc.) by using ear plugs or ear muffs.

Age-related hearing loss is very common and can lead to feelings of isolation. High blood pressure and diabetes can cause hearing loss.  If you experience hearing loss, talk to your doctor.


Memory loss is linked to:

A) Being physically inactive

B) Not eating a well-balanced diet

C) Not sleeping enough

D) B and C

E) All of the above

Answer: E

Being physically active, eating well and getting enough sleep will benefit your memory - and reduce your risk of depression.


A person older than 60 should take part in moderate to vigorous physical activity at least :

A) 7 hours a week or one hour daily

B) 5 hours a week, divided into 5-6 days and one day rest

C) 2 and 1/2 hours weekly divided any way

D) 15 min a day

Answer: C

Doing some physical activity is better than doing none. Start small and increase gradually. Walk or swim and add muscle and bone strengthening at least twice a week.

Note: Over-exercising is not beneficial and may lead to injuries.


Cancer, diabetes, heart disease and lung disease are the most prevalent medical conditions affecting seniors. Name four tips to prevent these four diseases:

1. ......

2. ......

3. ......

4. ......

Answer: four from the following:

- Not smoking

- Eating a well-balanced diet

- Being physically active

- Having a healthy weight

- Sleeping enough

- No or low alcohol usage

- Social connections


About one in three people between 65 and 74 has hearing loss; about half the people 75 and older do. When should you consult?

A) Certain sounds seem overly loud

B) Difficulty hearing in noisy areas

C) Turning up the volume on TV/radio louder than normal

D) Often asking people to repeat themselves

E) B, C and D

F) All of the above

Answer: F

Age-related hearing loss is associated with cognitive decline in older adults. It leads to confusion, social withdrawal, and depression. 

Have your hearing checked regularly because hearing loss can be gradual.


An older heart may not be able to perform as well under some extraordinary circumstances, like running a marathon. However, it is able to perform as usual during an illness, infection or injury.

A) True

B) False

Answer: B. 

According to the Harvard School of Medicine, these five habits can save your heart:

1. Avoid tobacco

2. Be active

3. Aim for a healthy weight

4. Enliven your diet

5. Avoid alcohol or drink in moderation: no more than 1 drink a day for women and 1-2 drinks a day for men


Which of the following are linked to urinary incontinence:

A) Alcohol, caffeine and chocolate

B) Carbonated drinks, sparkling water and artificial sweeteners

C) Apricots, papaya and pears

D) A and B

E) All of the above

Answer: D

Other irritants include: chili peppers, acidic foods, milk products and more. 

You can substitute apricots, papaya and pears to acidic fruits for a healthier bladder.


To prevent problems with your teeth:

A) Brush your teeth twice a day and floss daily

B) Don't smoke

C) See your dentist at least annually

D) Drink throughout the day: water, juices, sodas, tea or coffee

E) A, B and C

F) All of the above

Answer: E

Drinking throughout the day is also beneficial, but avoid juices, sodas and coffee. Black and green tea are okay.


What is the most common cause of injury-related hospital admission among people 65 and older in Canada?

Answer: Falls

Injuries caused by falls, like hip fractures and head injuries, can have a debilitating effect. 

Older people fall because of balance problems and muscle weakness. 

Start your fall prevention plan at the doctor or physiotherapist for a complete evaluation.


Is it useless to consult a doctor in order to prevent hereditary illnesses that run in the family?

A) Yes, because heredity is fate

B) No, because lifestyle and environment can also play a significant role

Answer: B

Genetics can be related to breast cancer, heart disease, depression, obesity, Alzheimer’s disease, and more.

Our genes, environment and other factors all play important roles and interact together to lead to potential outcomes.

These five healthy lifestyle habits can cut your risk of genetic diseases: eat well for good nutrition, manage your stress, exercise, avoid smoking, get adequate sleep.


Oral health plays an important role in the prevention of Alzheimer disease.

A) True

B) False

Answer: A.

Toxins produced by mouth bacteria have been found in the brain of people having Alzheimer's disease. Maintaining good oral health is one of the best things you can do to maintain general health.


Social isolation is linked to these health issues:

A) Cognitive decline and Alzheimer disease

B) Heart disease

C) Depression

D) Lower immunity

E) A and C

F) All of the above

Answer: F

Sudden changes like the death of a spouse, retirement or loss of mobility can put people at a higher risk of social isolation. People who engage in meaningful activities with others can better maintain their health and well-being.


By the time you reach your 70s and 80s, you may have a peripheral visual field loss of 20-30 degrees, which increases the risk of automobile accidents. What other(s) age-related factor(s) can impact your driving?

A) Hand tremors

B) Slower reflexes

C) Problems with night vision, colour vision, and bright lights

D) B-C

E) All of the above

Answer: D

Be more careful when driving. To increase your range of vision, turn your head and look both ways when approaching intersections. Take the course Safe Driving For Seniors at COA.

Have routine eye exams every two years and annual physicals to identify underlying conditions causing eye problems, like diabetes.


About one-third of problem drinkers develop their alcohol abuse late in life. What are the main causes for starting to drink excessively after the age of 60:

A) Loss of meaning and identity

B) Coping with physical and psychological problems

C) Ability to enjoy alcohol at any time during the day after retirement

D) Needing alcohol to get to sleep

E) A and C

F) All of the above

Answer: E

The loss of meaning and identity and the freedom to drink anytime are the most important factors. The need to be useful is experienced as a physical need, like eating and sleeping, and is especially strong when work has been important.

Activities such as volunteering are good for your health, and fulfill the same needs of providing purpose, meaning and a new identity.


A medical consultation is recommended for someone showing sudden signs of:

A) Moodiness or apathy

B) Physical activity

C) Changes in personality including antisocial behaviour

D) Language difficulty

E) A, C and D

F) All of the above

Answer: E

The brain shrinks by the age of 60 and normal cognitive changes include: increased difficulty in finding words and recalling names, multi-tasking and paying attention. 

Moodiness, apathy, changes in personality and dementia are not part of normal aging.