More Than Milk: Strong Bones and Injury Prevention for Aging Women in Ag
Summary: Do farmers or ranchers really retire? Generational family operations frequently include the aging parents, the living legends of agriculture. Farmers and ranchers self-identify good health with the ability to work. The normal aging process slows down one’s ability to engage in meaningful activities physically and mentally, essentially to continue working. Swirl in the postmenopausal issues incurred by the female farmer, and a myriad of health hazards arise.
Unlike men, who experience a gradual loss of bone mass as they age, women will lose over 30% of their bone mass in the first five years after menopause. Agriculture is a hazardous and uncertain profession. Women are working well past the age of menopause. Training measures should focus on avoiding common risk factors and preventative actions to decrease the likelihood of an injury. Workplace and home safety are achievable. We will also address other age-related changes such as vision, hearing, and sleep disturbance. Every member of the family operation will benefit from learning creative strategies and solutions to help the aging in-place seniors achieve wellness and self-fulfillment.
Linda Emanuel, RN
Community Health Nurse, AgriSafe Network
Good health advocacy has been at the heart of Linda’s essence from her formative years as a farm girl in eastern Nebraska. Graduating from Nebraska Methodist School of Nursing in 1985, she worked as an R.N. in a variety of acute care hospital settings for over 30 years. She and her husband Tom raised three sons on a successful row crop operation that has been able to welcome the next generation and their families home to continue to diversify their family business. Linda served as a Fellow in the Nebraska LEAD program and has also received agrimedicine training at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Linda now serves on the advisory board for CS-CASH and a member of the AgriSafe team, as a Community Health Nurse.
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