Local Matters

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July 26, 2021 - 10:09am
posted by Press Release in gas prices, news, covid-19.

Press release from AAA:

Today’s national average price for a gallon of gasoline is $3.16, down 1 cent in the past week. One year ago, the price was $2.18. The New York State average is $3.19 – down 1 cent from last week. A year ago, the NYS average was $2.27.

AAA Western and Central New York (AAA WCNY) reports the following averages:

  • Batavia -- $3.17 (no change since last week)
  • Buffalo -- $3.13 (up 1 cent since last week)
  • Ithaca -- $3.17 (no change since last week)
  • Rochester -- $3.16 (no change since last week)
  • Rome -- $3.24 (down 1 cent since last week)
  • Syracuse -- $3.16 (no change since last week)
  • Watertown -- $3.21 (down 1 cent since last week)

The national average price for gasoline dropped from $3.17 a week ago to $3.156 (rounded up to $3.16) today. The Energy Information Administration (EIA) reports that gas demand continues to increase, but only slightly.

Additionally, total domestic gas stocks saw a slight decline. These trends have helped to stabilize price increases; however, crude oil prices have fluctuated in the past week over market concerns regarding the COVID-19 delta variant, and if they stay less expensive, it could mean cheaper prices ahead.

Though, AAA expects the national average to remain above $3 per gallon throughout the summer.

From GasBuddy:

"With oil prices struggling under the weight of a rise in new COVID-19 cases thanks to the Delta variant and OPEC's increase in oil production, average gas prices in most states finally drifted lower," said Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy.

"However, we aren't yet in the clear -- U.S. gasoline demand last week surged to a new 2021 high, besting the week prior to the July 4 holiday. This shows that motorists aren't slowing their appetite for hitting the road just yet, and that could further boost prices should demand remain hot.

For now, motorists should enjoy the perhaps brief respite at the pump and buckle up for what might be a bumpy finish to summer."

July 25, 2021 - 9:00am
posted by Press Release in GCC, news, covid-19, affordable education.

Press release:

Labor shortages across nearly all industries are making headlines, but this is a topic community colleges have tackled for years. With increased urgency, local institutions prioritize course and program offerings to meet workforce demands.

The results build strong communities and make some great success stories.

Ryan Vogt, who thought he hated math in high school, said the personal attention his Finger Lakes Community College math professor gave him changed his whole outlook on the subject. Now, Ryan has a doctorate in mathematics and works at a U.S. Department of Energy lab.

Like many scholarship recipients at Genesee Community College, Claire Gardner was inspired and determined when she entered the Nursing Program. Upon graduation in 2019, she was prepared to be effective on the frontlines battling COVID-19, transferred her associate degree to SUNY Brockport to continue her education and landed her dream job as a NICU nurse at Rochester General Hospital.

When his first year at a university fell short of his expectations, Evan Baldwin shifted his educational path. He knew Monroe Community College's precision machining program was the right fit for him. Evan was hired as a full-time CNC operator a month before earning his associate degree in May.

Though each of their experiences is unique, they represent the stories of thousands of students who start and complete their studies at community colleges every year. Thousands more inspiring stories of how community colleges have transformed students' lives are waiting to unfold.

Dreams -- not debt -- are why individuals go to college. Like Ryan, Claire and Evan, New Yorkers go to college to achieve their goals, whether earning an associate degree for an in-demand job, learning new skills to change careers, or pursuing a bachelor's degree, master's degree, or Ph.D.

That's exactly what the State University of New York's 30 community colleges, including FLCC, GCC and MCC in the Western New York region, are designed for.

At a time when student loan debt is rising across the country, nearly two-thirds of SUNY community college associate degree graduates have zero student loan debt. That means they leave campus with no student debt, but have an accredited SUNY degree, and a pathway to a career or an advanced degree.

Simply put, community college is the most affordable way to earn a college degree, no matter how far they want to go.

New York State is rebounding and rebuilding after the turbulence of the COVID-19 pandemic. This means job opportunities in many industries will return to full vitality and new, future-looking jobs will be created.

With deep ties to their communities and regions, SUNY community colleges can help residents seize this moment -- and make education work around a busy life, with flexible on-campus and online associate degree programs for full-time or part-time students.

Applications can be completed online, are easier than ever and free at FLCC, GCC and MCC, like at most community colleges. Knowledgeable faculty and staff are available to guide students through the process.

Anyone interested is encouraged to visit flcc.edugenesee.edu, and monroecc.edu for information on special enrollment opportunities.

July 23, 2021 - 5:41pm
posted by Press Release in covid-19, GC Fair, news, vaccine clinics.

Press release:

GO Health is bringing free COVID-19 vaccination clinics to both the Genesee and Orleans county fairs this year. 

The one shot Johnson and Johnson will be available as well as the two-dose Pfizer vaccine. The second dose of Pfizer will be scheduled at the health department.

The Pfizer vaccine is authorized for those that are 12 and older, while the Johnson and Johnson vaccine can be administered to people that are 18 and older. Everyone under the age of 18 seeking vaccination must have a parent or guardian with them to provide permission.  

“The vaccination rates in both Genesee and Orleans counties are slowly increasing, but we are still lagging behind New York State,” said Paul Pettit, Public Health director for GO Health. “The majority of the cases we are seeing in both counties are people that are unvaccinated.” 

Genesee County Fair

Monday, July 26th

1:30-4:30 p.m.

Tuesday, July 27th

1:30-4:30 p.m.

Wednesday, July 28th

4:30-7:30 p.m.

Thursday, July 29th

1:30-4:30 p.m.

Friday, July 30th

1:30-4:30 p.m.

Anyone who is interested in being vaccinated can stop by the county emergency preparedness and health department trailers and choose the vaccine that is best for them.

There is a lot of misinformation out there about the vaccines, so health department staff will be available to answer any questions or concerns that residents have. 

“The fair is a perfect place to reach members of our community and this is a great opportunity for residents that have not been vaccinated yet, to conveniently get vaccinated while they are visiting the fair,” Pettit said.

July 16, 2021 - 1:57pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in covid-19, coronavirus, livestream, video.
Video Sponsor

COVID-19 Update for Genesee County with Public Health Director Paul Pettit.

We will be discussing:

  • The current numbers and trends for local infections;
  • The delta variant;
  • Prospects for a return of mask requirements and other restrictions to slow the spread;
  • The local status of vaccinations;
  • The Surgeon General's statement on vaccine misinformation.
July 15, 2021 - 11:57am

Press release:

Assemblyman Steve Hawley is joining his Assembly Minority colleagues in a letter to Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie demanding he call a special session to rescind New York State’s eviction moratorium. Otherwise, the state’s requirements will have persisted a month longer than federal protections, which are set to expire July 31st. 

The eviction moratorium has prevented small landlords from collecting revenue for over a year, even while facing financial obligations of their own.

“In terms of both public health and economic well-being, we are making a comeback from the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Hawley said. “With vaccinations available to all who want them and an abundance of job openings throughout the state, I see no benefit in allowing the eviction moratorium to remain in effect any longer.

"While these protections were sensible during the worst days of the pandemic, the time has come to allow landlords to collect their revenue, both for their sake and also the sake of other tenants who otherwise might have their rents raised to compensate for rent not paid by others.”

July 14, 2021 - 12:33pm
posted by Press Release in covid-19, coronavirus pandemic, news, ILGR, fundraiser, dewitt, walk, Run & Roll.

Press release:

Independent Living of the Genesee Region (ILGR) is excited to announce our very first in-person event since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic! Join us in celebrating the 31st anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act with our 2nd Annual Walk, Run & Roll!

The event takes place Monday, July 26, from 3 to 7 p.m. at Pavilion 2 of DeWitt Recreation Area, 115 Cedar St. in Batavia, rain or shine.

To register, go to runsignup.com/ilgrwalkrunroll.

For $25, participants can walk, run or roll the distance of their choosing. All participants receive an event T-shirt.

Food trucks will be present, plus a basket raffle, a 50/50 raffle and a caricature artist.

Please bring your own chair! COVID-19 guidelines will be followed.

For more information, call Donna Becker at (585) 815-8501, ext. 411.

Thanks to our sponsors: BW’s Restaurant and Banquet Facility, United Refining Company, RESTORE Sexual Assault Services, R.A. Haitz Co. Inc., Assemblyman Stephen Hawley, GEICO, Fidelis, National Grid and Ken Barrett Chevrolet-Cadillac.

Independent Living of the Genesee Region (ILGR) is a member of the Western New York Independent Living, Inc. family of agencies that offers an expanding array of services to aid individuals with disabilities to take control of their own lives.


You have the power to Stop The Spread! Together, we can protect our communities and stop the COVID-19 pandemic. Get vaccinated!

In the last year, we saved NYS taxpayers over $118 million by helping individuals leave or avoid institutionalization through practicing the principles of education, empowerment and equality for persons with disabilities.


Connect with us on social media!

Facebook: www.Facebook.com/wnyil

Instagram: http://instagram.com/wnyil/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/wnyil

July 9, 2021 - 2:24pm

Press release:

The Grand Healthcare System announced Wednesday (July 7) their participation in the New York "Hometown Heroes" ticker tape parade, which took place down the Canyon of Heroes in Lower Manhattan.

A true celebration of essential workers who supported New Yorkers throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. The Grand Healthcare System employees were on floats and marching in the parade representing thousands of their hardworking team mates who worked tirelessly for the residents, their families and loved ones, and their entire communities, which was unparalleled.

In Genesee County, this includes The Grand Rehabilitation and Nursing at Batavia, located at 157 State St.

"Our Grand family was there day and night to provide the highest quality of care, support, and encouragement during this extremely challenging time," said Jeremy B. Strauss, chief executive officer of The Grand Healthcare System.

"This was a monumental team effort, one which our awe-inspiring team of professionals handled with courage, perseverance, and dignity."

Wednesday's parade began at Manhattan's Battery Park, and continued along the Canyon of Heroes, and ending at City Hall Park.

The Grand Healthcare System is proud to honor its Grand Heroes who were there representing each and every Grand Family employee. It was an honor and a privilege to join the parade and honor all of our Hometown Heroes.

June 24, 2021 - 6:02pm
posted by Press Release in covid-19, news, batavia, license and permit renewals.

Press release:

The Batavia Police Department would like to notify citizens that the State of Emergency declared by Governor Cuomo at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic ended today (June 24). Therefore, the extension of expiration dates for driver licenses and permits that expired on or after March 1, 2020 also ended today.

Expired drivers licenses and permits are no longer valid and need to be renewed with the Department of Motor Vehicles.

June 23, 2021 - 4:02pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in St. Anthony's, City Church, batavia, covid-19, coronavirus.


Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, City Church, at its St. Anthony facility, has continued to offer free food to anybody who drives through on the distribution today. There was another distribution this morning with a line of cars stretched down Liberty Street and dozens of volunteers helping with the distribution.





June 23, 2021 - 2:55pm

Press release:

Statement by Melissa Fleischut, president and CEO of the New York State Restaurant Association:

“While the lifting of the emergency order is a welcome milestone to the end of the pandemic, with it comes the sudden end to alcohol to-go. A permanent extension of alcohol-to-go is supported by 78 percent of New Yorkers, but the Legislature failed to extend it and now the Executive Order has ended.

"Only in New York would elected officials ignore an overwhelming majority of the public. Restaurants are struggling to find staff, keep up with rising costs and manage a limited supply of goods, and nearly two thirds of the applicants will not receive Restaurant Relief Funds. New York State must do more to help, not hurt, our restaurant industry.”

June 23, 2021 - 2:47pm

Press release:

Statement from NYSCEA President Marcus Molinaro on the End of COVID-19 State of Emergency:

"Today, we learned from a tweet that the Governor will end the COVID-19 State of Emergency, effective tomorrow (June 24). 

"This is yet another important milestone signaling the approaching end of a pandemic that so many heroic Americans have battled for over 16 grueling months.

"On behalf of the counties of New York, in addition to all those who played a critical role, I thank the leaders and government employees who were too often the unsung heroes in this pandemic. They all worked tirelessly, day and night saving lives and rebuilding our communities.

"Counties across New York led the local response to this catastrophe. County leaders were the onsite incident commanders, leading local emergency response, and our local health and mental health departments were the tip of the spear in administering the testing, tracing, and vaccination efforts that made this day possible. 

"And, on behalf of all county governments, I extend our heartfelt prayers to those who lost loved ones. We are committed to recovering and rebuilding in their memory and honor."

June 11, 2021 - 5:09pm
posted by Press Release in covid-19, coronavirus, news, notify.

Press release:

Genesee County reporting seven new positive cases of COVID-19.

  • The individuals are in their 20s, 40s, 60s and 70s. 
  • One of the current positive individuals is hospitalized.
  • Seven of the previous positive individuals have completed their 10-day isolation and have been removed from mandatory isolation.

Orleans County reporting two new positive cases of COVID-19.  

  • The individuals are in their 40s and 70s.
  • Zero of the current positive individuals are hospitalized.
  • Two of the previous positive individuals have completed their 10-day isolation and have been removed from mandatory isolation.

Today's COVID-19 update from the Health Department including the following notice:

Today is our last scheduled biweekly press briefing for the Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments due to the lower new COVID cases for both counties.

Although we will not be doing the biweekly media push, please note we will continue to report our numbers via our website at a minimum of twice per week (GOHealthNY.org), on our social media platforms, and via the Genesee-Orleans-Wyoming COVID-19 Case and Vaccination Tracker (which updates Monday through Friday, except holidays).

For regular updates related to GO Health COVID-19 Data, please visit our GO Health website at www.GOHealthNY.org and choose Emerging Issues. There you will find: the data chart as on our regular briefing; links to the Genesee-Orleans-Wyoming COVID Tracking Map; NY Forward for state updates; The Finger Lakes Vaccine Hub for updated data on GO Health vaccination; as well as links for vaccination and testing clinics.

Also keep an eye on our social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (GOHealthNY is our user name for all three) as we will regularly post updates.

June 8, 2021 - 4:06pm
posted by Press Release in news, covid-19, coronavirus.

Press release:

Data Update – Covering June 4-8

Genesee County reporting three new positive cases of COVID-19.

  • The individuals are in their 0-19s and 20s.
  • Three of the current positive individuals are hospitalized.
  • Three of the previous positive individuals have completed their 10-day isolation and have been removed from mandatory isolation.


Orleans County reporting one new positive cases of COVID-19.

  • The individual is in their 0-19s.
  • Zero of the current positive individuals is hospitalized.
  • Eleven of the previous positive individuals have completed their 10-day isolation and have been removed from mandatory isolation.
June 8, 2021 - 3:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in st. james, batavia, Field of Thanks, video, covid-19, coronavirus.
Video Sponsor

Dozens of flags in a "Field of Thanks," honoring those who served our community during the pandemic as well as military veterans, has been installed in front of the St. James Episcopal Church in Batavia.

On Sunday, there was an opening ceremony for the field of flags, which will be on display and open to self-guided tours until June 13 at 5 p.m., when there will be a closing ceremony.

Each flag is accompanied by a plaque depicting the story of an essential worker, law enforcement officer, other first responders, and armed forces members.

Visitors during those hours will also be able to stop by a staffed information table where a map will help them find familiar names of locals from World War I through the present. 

Net proceeds will be divided between two nonprofits: WNY Heroes and Meals on Wheels.

June 7, 2021 - 2:17pm
posted by Press Release in Gov. Andrew Cuomo, news, covid-19, schools, masks.

Press release:

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today, June 7, announced that school districts can choose to lift the requirement that their students must wear masks outdoors. Guidance on mask use indoors remains in place.

This change aligns New York State's guidance on schools with CDC guidance on summer camps, where even unvaccinated students are not currently required to wear masks outdoors.

"The numbers show that the risk of transmission by children is extremely low, especially in this state, which has an extremely low positivity rate," Governor Cuomo said. "We spoke with the CDC, and since they're not going to change their guidance for several weeks in New York State, we're going to modify the CDC guidance and allow schools to choose no mask outside for children.

"We'll leave that up to the local school district and we spoke to the CDC, which has no objection. It's very important that people understand the logic between these decisions and that they're rational and based on the science and the data. We have a disconnect right now between the school guidance and the camp guidance, and it's important to rectify it because if people don't think the rules are logical, then they're not going to want to follow the rules."

On May 24, Governor Cuomo announced that based on the current COVID-19 trajectory, all New York State schools will reopen for full in-person learning for the 2021-2022 school year beginning in September.


Also today, Governor Cuomo announced that when New York State reaches 70 percent vaccinated, he will remove COVID restrictions and guidance (except for certain settings such as healthcare, congregate settings, schools and mass transit). 

June 5, 2021 - 12:04pm
posted by Press Release in covid-19, immunization, pop-up clinics, news, rapid test clinic.

Press release:

Next week’s Pop-up Clinics are now all available for walk-in and registration.

“We are happy to be able to continue providing the Pop-up Clinics to our Genesee and Orleans County residents,” said Paul Pettit, Public Health director for GO Health. “As a reminder the Pfizer vaccine is for anyone 12 years old and older.

"Moderna and Pfizer are two doses and Johnson & Johnson (J&J) Janssen vaccine is a one-and-done vaccine. People are considered to be fully vaccinated after two weeks following their last dose of the two-series vaccines and two weeks after the J&J vaccine.”

Pfizer, J&J and Moderna clinics offer walk-in opportunities; however, we encourage you to register via links belowand choose the vaccine that best works for you to guarantee your dose and make your appointment quick and easy. Walk-ins are available on a first come, first serve basis. You can also click on the direct links below.

For those who do not have internet they can call the GO Health Vaccine Registration Help Lines:

  • Genesee: (585) 815-7168
  • Orleans: (585) 589-3170

These lines are ONLY to make vaccine appointments, are not able to answer COVID-19-related questions, and are not associated with either Health Department.

“As more people to get vaccinated we are seeing people enjoy activities with fewer restrictions,” Pettit said. “There continue to be plenty of options to get any of the three vaccines offered.”

If you are a business/church/organization that is interested in hosting a vaccination clinic at your location, please fill out the survey. One of our staff members will be in contact with you.

For those who are seeking testing, both health departments provide limited free rapid testing for those without symptoms at the respective Health Departments.

For Genesee County, a rapid test drive-through clinic is scheduled for June 10th 1:15 - 2:15 p.m. at County Building #2, 3837 W. Main Street Road, Batavia. For Orleans County, a rapid test clinic is scheduled for June 10th 10 - 10:30 a.m. at the Orleans County Health Department at 14016 Route 31 West, Albion.

To register for testing for the Genesee Test Clinic, click here. To register for the Orleans Test Clinic, click here.


  • Tuesday, June 8 / 11 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Yates Community Library, 15 N. Main St., Lyndonville

J&J: Walk-ins & Appointment



  • Tuesday, June 8 / 2 - 3:30 p.m.

State Street Park, 385 E. Center St. / Corner of State and East Center streets, Medina

J&J: Walk-ins & Appointment



  • Wednesday, June 9 / 1:30 - 3:30 p.m.

Genesee County Health Department, 3837 W. Main Street Road, Batavia

Moderna: Walk-ins & Appointment


J&J: Walk-ins & Appointment



  • Thursday, June 10 / 1 - 4:45 p.m.

Orleans County Health Department, 14016 State Route 31, Suite 101

Pfizer: Walk-ins and Appointment



    • Friday, June 11 / 11 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

    Alabama Fire Department, 2230 Judge Road, Oakfield

    Pfizer: Walk-ins and Appointment


    J&J: Walk-ins

    June 4, 2021 - 4:54pm
    posted by Press Release in news, coronavirus, covid-19.

    Press release:

    Data Update – Covering June 1-4:

    Genesee County reporting 11 new positive cases of COVID-19.

    • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 40s and 50s.
    • Three of the current positive individuals are hospitalized.
    • Fifteen of the previous positive individuals have completed their 10-day isolation and have been removed from mandatory isolation.


    Orleans County reporting seven new positive cases of COVID-19.

    • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 50s, 60s and 70s.
    • Zero of the current positive individuals is hospitalized.
    • Twenty-eight of the previous positive individuals have completed their 10-day isolation and have been removed from mandatory isolation.
    • The ages and number of those removed from isolation have been reconciled.
    June 2, 2021 - 3:58pm
    posted by Press Release in news, gc sheriff's office, jail visitation, covid-19.

    Press release:

    Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr. announced this afternoon that he is reinstating in-person inmate visitation at the Genesee County Jail effective Saturday, June 12 beginning at 12 p.m.

    The Genesee County Jail will be adhering to the following guidelines to prevent the risk of exposure to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) to employees, inmates and families:

    • Only inmates not on a COVID-19-related quarantine or isolation will be able to receive visitors;
    • Visitors are required to bring their own mask and must wear the mask during the entire visitation;
    • Visitors will be screened upon entering the facility (temperature check, series of questions, etc.);
    • The maximum amount of visitors per inmate is (2) two;
    • The maximum number of inmates receiving visitors at one time is (2) two;
    • All visitors must provide acceptable picture identification.

    The visitation schedule is as follows:

    Monday – Thursday / 12 - 7 p.m.

    Friday / NO VISITS

    Saturday / 12 - 7 p.m.

    Sunday / 12 - 2 p.m. and 4 - 7 p.m.

    Visits are on a first-come, first-served basis every hour during the times listed above.

    Appointments are highly recommended and can be made in advance by calling the Genesee County Jail at 343-0838. Additions to a visit must be made 24 hours prior to the time of the scheduled visit.

    All visitors must sign in separately and fully list all information requested on the visitor sign in form. Visitors under 18 years of age must be accompanied by parent or legal guardian with acceptable photo ID.

    June 1, 2021 - 5:18pm
    posted by Press Release in news, covid-19, coronavirus.

    Press release:

    Data Update – Covering May 28 through June 1:

    Genesee County reporting three new positive cases of COVID-19.

    • The individuals are in their 20s, 30s and 40s.
    • Four of the current positive individuals are hospitalized.
    • Eighteen of the previous positive individuals have completed their 10-day isolation and have been removed from mandatory isolation.
    • We are saddened to report the loss of one community resident. The individual was under 65. We do not provide any further information to protect the privacy of the individuals and their families. Our deepest condolences to the families and friends during this very difficult time.

    Orleans County reporting two new positive cases of COVID-19.

    • One of the current positive individuals is hospitalized.
    • Due to technology issues, we are unable to report ages and the number of people removed from mandatory isolation. This information will be updated in the June 4th briefing.
    June 1, 2021 - 8:00am

    Press release:

    With COVID-19 vaccines becoming more prevalent and a return to public activities, many Americans are looking forward to resuming their lives and returning to normal. This June, during Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month, the Alzheimer’s Association Western New York Chapter is encouraging residents to make brain health an important part of their return to normal. 

    “The past year has been extremely challenging for most Americans,” said WNY Chapter Executive Director Jill Horner. “Chronic stress, like that experienced during the pandemic, can impact memory, mood and anxiety. As local residents begin to return to normal, we encourage them to make brain health a priority.”

    The WNY Chapter offers these five suggestions to promote brain health and to help residents restore their mental well-being: 

    1.     Recommit to Brain-healthy Basics 

    Evidence suggests that healthy behaviors took a back seat for many Americans during the pandemic. Gym memberships were put on hiatus, social engagement became more challenging and many Americans swapped out healthful eating for their favorite comfort foods, take-out meals and frequent snacking while working remotely. One study published recently found participants gained nearly 1.5 pounds per month over the past year, on average.

    The Alzheimer’s Association — through its U.S. POINTER Study— is examining the role lifestyle interventions, including diet, may play in protecting cognitive function. Right now, many experts agree that people can improve their brain health and reduce the risk of cognitive decline by adopting healthy lifestyle habits, preferably in combination, including: 

    • Exercise regularly— Regular cardiovascular exercise helps increase blood flow to the body and brain, and there is strong evidence that regular physical activity is linked to better memory and thinking. 
    • Maintain a heart-healthy diet— Stick to a meal schedule full of fruits and vegetables to ensure a well-balanced diet. Some evidence suggests a healthful diet is linked to cognitive performance. The Mediterranean and DASH* diets are linked to better cognitive functioning, and help reduce risk of heart disease as well.
    • Get proper sleep— Maintaining a regular, uninterrupted sleep pattern benefits physical and psychological health, and helps clear waste from the brain. Adults should get at least seven hours of sleep each night and try to keep a routine bedtime. 
    • Stay socially and mentally active— Meaningful social engagement may support cognitive health, so stay connected with friends and family. Engage your mind by doing activities that stump you, like completing a jigsaw puzzle or playing strategy games. Or challenge yourself further by learning a new language or musical instrument.

    2.     Return to Normal at Your Own Pace

    Many Americans are eager for a return to normal life following the pandemic, but others are anxious. In fact, one recent survey found that nearly half of adults (49 percent) report feeling uncomfortable about returning to in-person interactions when the pandemic ends.

    For those feeling anxious, the Alzheimer’s Association suggests taking small steps. It may also be important to set boundaries and communicate your preferences to others in your social circles. 

    3.     Help Others 

    There is evidence to suggest that helping others during the pandemic may not only make you feel better, but it may be good for you as well. Research shows that helping others in a crisis can be an effective way to alleviate stress and anxiety.

    One study published during the pandemic found that adults over age 50 who volunteer for about two hours per week have a substantially reduced risk of dying, higher levels of physical activity and an improved sense of well-being.

    To help others and yourself during June and throughout the year, volunteer in your community, run errands or deliver meals to a home-bound senior or donate to a favorite cause, such as supporting participants in the Alzheimer’s Association’s The Longest Day event on June 20. 

    4.     Unplug and Disconnect

    Technology has dominated our daily lives during the pandemic like never before. While technology has kept us connected through COVID-19, it has also created fatigue for many Americans.

    Experts warn that excessive stimulation coming from our phones, computers, social media sources and news reports can add to our already heightened anxiety levels. To avoid technology overload, experts advise setting limits on your screen time, avoid carrying your phone everywhere, and disconnecting from digital devices at bedtime. 

    5.     Control Your Stress Before it Controls You

    In small doses, stress teaches the brain how to respond in healthy ways to the unexpected, inconvenient or unpleasant realities of daily life. Prolonged or repeated stress, however, can wear down and damage the brain, leading to serious health problems including depression, anxiety disorders, memory loss and increased risk for dementia.

    Reports indicate that Alzheimer’s and dementia caregivers are especially vulnerable to physical and emotional stress. The Alzheimer’s Association offers tips to help manage caregiver stress.

    Meditation, exercise, listening to music or returning to a favorite activity you have missed during the pandemic are just some ways to manage stress. Do what works best for you.

    “The COVID-19 pandemic has been an overwhelming time for all of us,” Horner said. “It’s important for people to know there are steps we can take to lessen the stress and anxiety we might be feeling. It can be easy to take brain health for granted, but now more than ever, it’s a good idea to make it a priority.”

    Currently, the Alzheimer’s Association and representatives from more than 40 countries are working together to study the short- and long-term consequences of COVID-19 on the brain and nervous system in people at different ages, and from different genetic backgrounds.

    About Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month

    Created by the Alzheimer’s Association in 2014, Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month is dedicated to encouraging a global conversation about the brain and Alzheimer’s disease and other dementia. To learn more about the Alzheimer’s Association, available resources and how you can get involved to support the cause, visit alz.org.

    About the Alzheimer’s Association

    The Alzheimer’s Association is a worldwide voluntary health organization dedicated to Alzheimer’s care, support and research. Our mission is to lead the way to end Alzheimer’s and all other dementia — by accelerating global research, driving risk reduction and early detection, and maximizing quality care and support. Our vision is a world without Alzheimer’s and all other dementia®. Visitalz.orgor call 1-800-272-3900.

    *DASH -- acronym for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension -- an eating plan to lower or control high blood pressure. It emphasizes foods that are lower in sodium as well as foods that are rich in potassium, magnesium and calcium — nutrients that help lower blood pressure.

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