The Letter ‘S’ Is Vital for Health and Vitality as Seniors Age

As people get older they will be dealing with different challenges every day. Strength and muscle begin to decline well through a person’s 60s and into their 70s and 80s. Even if they exercise regularly, they can expect to lose more and more strength every year. Eventually this can affect their balance and ability to perform certain tasks throughout the day.

Senior Care Manhattan NY - The Letter ‘S’ Is Vital for Health and Vitality as Seniors Age

Senior Care Manhattan NY – The Letter ‘S’ Is Vital for Health and Vitality as Seniors Age

What’s the letter ‘S’?

This basically stands for Safety. In order to improve safety and keep it as positive as possible for people as they get older, it’s important to maintain the right focus.

How does a person stay focused on safety?

They acknowledge their limitations. Some of these limitations could be due to mental challenges or other emotional issues, the more likely it has to do with their physical characteristics, strength, and balance. If a senior is unwilling to admit he or she is having difficulty getting up on a stepladder to get something down from the closet, they may continue to do these simple tasks without a second thought.

That’s going to diminish health and vitality, especially if they stumble and fall off the ladder. There’s no point in putting somebody at risk when there are other options.

What other options are there?

Relying on family members and friends, even neighbors, may be one of the first option people think about, but hiring professional senior home care support services is one of the best ones to think about.

Seniors can no longer take these things for granted.

In our 20s, 30s, 40s, and 50s, we often take many things about our physical capabilities for granted. Some people who never broke a bone or severely sprained an ankle or knee may have no clue that they are not invincible.

However, when they reach their 60s, 70s, or 80s, they will see how frail and fragile they can be. It’s important not to take mobility and physical ability for granted. When you don’t take things for granted, you have a tendency to focus on doing the right thing to make sure you remain as active and safe as possible.

When a person reaches a certain age, they need to be honest with themselves about their ability, assess every situation for potential safety issues, and, when necessary, be willing to hire a senior home care aide for assistance.

When seniors remain safe at home, it can be important not just in the short-term aspect of their life, but well into their future.

If you or an aging loved one are considering Senior Care Services in Manhattan NY, please contact the caring staff at Gentle Hands Home Care.

What Should be in Your Elder Loved One’s Emergency Preparedness Kit?

In your role as a family caregiver, your elder parent’s safety is one of your top priorities. This means not only taking steps to ensure that their home is secure and they make good lifestyle choices, but also preparing for the possibility of emergency situations and disasters that can occur quickly and put your parent in serious danger.

Elder Care Long Island NY - What Should be in Your Elder Loved One's Emergency Kit

Elder Care Long Island NY – What Should be in Your Elder Loved One’s Emergency Kit

There are many things that you can do to help keep your loved one safer in these situations, but one of the most important is making sure that they have an emergency preparedness kit packed, ready, and easily accessible so that they can get to it easily if an emergency situation arises. This kit should contain the items your elder loved one might need throughout a disaster or weather emergency to help them handle their needs and stay safe, healthy, and comfortable.

While your loved one will need to add items that are personal to their individual needs and challenges, some of the basic items that should be included in any emergency preparedness kit include:

• One gallon of water per person, per day, with a minimum 3-day supply if you plan for your parent to be evacuated, or 2-week supply if they will remain at home during the emergency
• Non-perishable foods that require no heat or water for preparation
• Flashlight and extra batteries
• Hand-crank or battery-operated radio and extra batteries
• First aid kit
• Multi-purpose tool
• Hygiene items
• Sanitation items
• At least 7-day supply of all medications, including over-the-counter items frequently used, if possible
• Extra clothing
• Blankets
• Copies of important personal documents such as birth certificate, passport, prescriptions, deeds, and insurance information
• Emergency contact information
• Cell phone and emergency charger or battery
• Information about local shelters

Starting elder care for your aging loved one can be one of the best decisions that you can make for them as their family caregiver. An elder home care services provider can be with your parent on a customized schedule to ensure that they get the level of care, support, and encouragement that they need throughout their later years to remain happy, healthy, comfortable, and safe, while also pursuing as much independence and activity as possible.

When it comes to helping them handle emergency situations, this elder care provider can help your parent understand the risks that they are facing, ensure that they have the emergency preparation supplies that they might need to help them through the situation, and even plan preparedness activities such as running drills to help with the possibility of evacuation or other disasters.

When it comes to helping them to create and maintain their emergency preparedness kit, this care provider can help your parent evaluate what they might need, source and store the items, and frequently check the items to ensure that they are still valid and in good condition. This ensures that the kit is ready in the event that it is needed, and is in the best condition possible. As a family caregiver this can give you a tremendous sense of relief knowing that if your elderly parent does face a disaster situation, they will be ready to do what they need to do to get through it in the best way possible.

Source: http://www.redcross.org/get-help/prepare-for-emergencies/be-red-cross-ready

If you or an aging loved one are considering Elder Care Services in Long Island NY, please contact the caring staff at Gentle Hands Home Care.

Tips for Controlling Fluids in an Elderly Adult Suffering from Congestive Heart Failure

Homecare Hicksville NY

Homecare Hicksville NY – Tips for Controlling Fluids

If you are a family caregiver for an elderly adult who is suffering from congestive heart failure, one of the recommendations that you have likely received from their doctor is to limit the amount of fluids that your aging parent consumes daily. Congestive heart failure can lead to fluid retention throughout the body, which can then put even further strain on the heart. Limit the amount of fluids that your aging parent consumes daily will help to prevent this strain as well as reduce the risk that they will experience difficult swelling.

For many aging adults, controlling fluids can be challenging. Helping them to adjust their lifestyle can make this easier for them while they journey with congestive heart failure as they age in place. Fortunately there are ways that you can simplify this guideline and help your parent make it a normal part of their routine.

Use these tips to help your loved one control fluids as they deal with congestive heart failure:

• Fluid is not just water. When it comes to controlling your parent’s fluid intake, it is important to remember that this does not just mean the water that they drink. Foods that are comprised largely of liquid are also considered fluids. This includes soup, ice cream, gelatin, very juicy fruits, and ice pops. Make sure that you pay close attention to these foods and count them as part of their fluid intake.

• Measure their glasses. Most people do not know how much their glasses hold and merely estimate what they consume when they drink out of them. This is not adequate when controlling the fluid intake for seniors with congestive heart failure. Measure how much your parent’s drinking glasses hold, and encourage them to accurately measure each fluid that they consume.

• Ease dry mouth. Your parent might struggle with feelings of dry mouth or dry throat when they are not permitted to consume as many fluids as they usually do. Help them to ease these feelings without increasing their fluid intake by encouraging them to suck on hard candy, chew gum, use mouth moisturizing products, or rinse their mouth with water and spit it out before swallowing.

If your aging parent has been dealing with congestive heart failure or their condition has worsened to the point at which you do not feel as though you are able to handle their needs properly, now may be the ideal time for you to start home are for them. An in-homecare provider can create a course of management and care that is right for their individual needs while also supporting a lifestyle that is active, engaged, and fulfilling for them.

This can include helping them to understand their condition and how it has impacted their health and quality of life, as well as the recommendations that their doctor has given them to manage their condition properly and stay as healthy as possible as they age in place.

When it comes to helping your elderly adult stay healthier and safer by controlling their fluids, this homecare provider can be a valuable source of support and encouragement. They can help your parent to remember the fluid intake guidelines that their doctor gave them and make meaningful changes to their regular routine that will help them to comply with these guidelines. This can help to ensure that they are able to live an active, satisfying, and enjoyable life while keeping their heart as strong as possible as they age in place.

Sources:  https://www.cdc.gov/dhdsp/data_statistics/fact_sheets/docs/fs_heart_failure.pdf
http://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/heart-failure/watching-your-fluid-intake-when-you-have-heart-failure

If you or an aging loved one are considering Homecare Services in Hicksville NY, please contact the caring staff at Gentle Hands Home Care.

Quick and Easy Ways to Bump up Your Loved One’s Nutrition Levels

Home Care Little Neck NY

Home Care Little Neck NYYour elderly loved one has spent many years choosing her own food, but she may be at a point where she needs to consider nutrition over her favorite food items. Adding more nutrition doesn’t have to be a chore, however.

Add Just One More Vegetable or Fruit Each Day

Sometimes it’s intimidating to suddenly start eating five servings of fruits and vegetables every day. That can even be one of the reasons that your elderly loved one drags her feet about changing her eating habits. But adding just one more fruit or vegetable serving each day can make a big difference with a small action.

Choose Whole Grain over Enriched White Bread

Enriched white bread often uses bleached flour that is missing some of the key nutrients, whole grains, and fiber that your elderly loved one really needs in her diet. Whenever possible, start looking for whole grain breads to quickly bump up the nutrition level of even a slice of toast.

Eat from the Rainbow

When your elderly loved one eats a variety of colors of fruits and vegetables, what she’s really doing is enjoying an array of vitamins and minerals. Choosing fruits and vegetables from all of the different color families helps to ensure that your loved one is getting nutrients from all across the spectrum. It’s also an easy way to tell at a glance that your loved one has a varied selection of choices.

Consider a Supplement

Depending on your elderly loved one’s needs, supplements might be a good idea. Your loved one’s doctor can run blood tests and determine where she has need of additional nutrients. These should be taken according to his recommendations because some can interfere with medications she may be taking.

Talk to Your Loved One’s Doctor

Beyond supplementation, it’s a good idea to talk to your loved one’s doctor about her nutritional needs. He may recommend a specific diet or even recommend that you work with a dietician or a nutritionist. All of these options can help you to make sure that your elderly loved one is getting all of the nutrition that she needs.

Your loved one’s elderly home care providers may have some additional ideas that can help you to increase your loved one’s nutritional levels.

If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Care Services in Little Neck NY, please contact the caring staff at Gentle Hands Home Care.

Top Mealtime Tools for a Senior with Alzheimer’s Disease

Home Care Services Nassau County NY

Home Care Services Nassau County NYCaring for an elderly adult poses a wide variety of challenges for your elderly loved one and for you as their family caregiver. It is important that you not only recognize these challenges, but equip yourself with coping tools to help you address these issues effectively to give your senior the safe, healthy, and comfortable lifestyle that they desire and deserve.

Mealtime issues are particularly common among elderly adults suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. They might not get the nutrition that they need, may resist eating certain foods, or may struggle with swallowing. Fortunately there are tools that you can use to help make mealtime easier for your parent and encourage better nutrition as they get older.

Top mealtime tools for a senior with Alzheimer’s disease include:

• Colored tableware. Elderly adults who are dealing with Alzheimer’s disease might not be able to recognize the foods that they are eating or might get confused about what they are supposed to be eating. Using colored tableware can make it easier for your parent to identify what they should be eating and make it more obvious in its surroundings. Colors such as red and orange are also thought to stimulate appetite, potentially helping your senior eat more.

• Adaptive utensils. Many elderly adults with Alzheimer’s disease struggle with mobility which can make it difficult for them to use eating utensils properly. Consider adaptive utensils such as weighted forks and spoons. These make it easier for your parent to lift and guide them for more control and more confident eating.

• No-spill cups and dishes. Difficulty with body control, confusion, and altered spatial clues can make it common for your elderly adult to knock over cups and dishes. This is not only frustrating, but can be upsetting as well, potentially leading to negative behaviors. Look for cups and dishes designed to remain upright and not spill, including those with suction cups on the bottom to keep them in place. This will make it easier for your parent to get to their food and prevent accidents.

If you have been considering ways to help your elderly loved one live a higher quality of life as they age in place, starting home care services for them may be the ideal solution. The highly personalized services of a senior home care services provider are designed specifically with your elderly loved one’s needs, limitations, and challenges in mind, while also promoting as much independence, activity, and engagement as possible. This means that they will be able to live a lifestyle that is safe, happy, healthy, and fulfilling as they address their needs in a way that is right for them.

For a senior who is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, this personalized, attentive care can make a tremendous difference in their comfort, security, and health, giving them the opportunity to make more out of their later years as they cope with the effects of their dementia. This home care services provider can be with your parent during mealtime to help them address the particular issues that they face, preparing meals for them, sitting with them to provide companionship and support, and even providing physical assistance with eating so that your loved one gets the nutrition that they need and avoids potentially serious dangers and complications.

Source:  https://www.alz.org/care/alzheimers-food-eating.asp

If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Care Services in Nassau County NY, please contact the caring staff at Gentle Hands Home Care.

What You Should Know about National Donor Day

Homecare Massapequa NY

Homecare Massapequa NYWhen you think of February 14, you likely first think about Valentine’s Day. As a family caregiver, however, you should be aware of another observance that makes the hearts so popular in Valentine’s decorations even more meaningful. February 14 is also National Donor Day, a day set aside to raise awareness about organ donation, what it means for those in need of donations, and how it can impact the lives of those who choose to give the gift of life through donation. Understanding this can help you to guide your parent toward the decision that is right for them as you make the choice that is right for you. For many elderly adults, knowing that they are an organ donor gives them a great sense of pride and confidence that they can still do good even when their life has come to an end.

What you should know about National Donor Day and organ donation includes:

• 95 percent of adults report that they support organ donation.

• Throughout the United States there are approximately 2,091 children who are waiting for an organ transplant.

• There is no age limit to be an organ donor and organs have been used from donors of all ages. The oldest organ donor on record to have donated an organ to a recipient was 92 years old.

• Even people with medical conditions can be an organ donor. Health issues do not always impact all organs and tissues of the body, meaning that even if one area of your parent’s body is impacted by a health complication or disease, they may still be able to donate other tissues or organs.

• Being an organ donor does not impact the quality of care that your parent will receive at the hospital or doctor if they become ill or have an accident.

• Your parent can still follow through with end-of-life arrangements, including having an open-casket funeral, if they are a donor.

If you have been looking for ways to enhance your parent’s quality of life and help them to live a lifestyle that is safe, healthy, comfortable, active, and independent, starting elder homecare for them might be the ideal option. An elderly homecare services provider can be with your parent on a customized schedule to ensure that they get the care, support, and assistance that they need while also promoting as much autonomy as possible. They can then devise a course of management and care specifically tailored to their needs so that they can have the highest quality of life no matter what the level of care they require.

As their family caregiver knowing that your senior has an elderly homecare services provider with them can give you greater confidence that they will have everything that they need both when you are with them and when you are not. This can help to reduce the chances that your parent will suffer issues such as depression, loneliness, isolation, and loss of motivation, and boost their ability to make the most of their later years.

Sources:  http://www.donoralliance.org/events/national-donor-day/
https://organdonor.gov/index.html

If you or an aging loved one are considering Homecare Services in Massapequa NY, please contact the caring staff at Gentle Hands Home Care.

What is “Pink Eye”?

Home Health Care Jamaica NY

Home Health Care Jamaica NYAs a family caregiver, you know that the winter season often brings with it illness and infection. While these are generally mild to moderate, for your elderly loved one they might be much more pressing. Aging adults have immune systems that are lower and not as effective as those of younger people, which means that an illness or infection that seems mild to you or your children could develop into something very serious for your senior.

Understanding the different types of infections and illnesses that are possible can help you to detect possible issues when they occur so that you can give your parent the care that they need and ensure that they get the medical treatment necessary to help them overcome their issue and move forward more healthily.

One common infection that occurs at this time of year, but can occur at any time of the year, is conjunctivitis. Also known as “pink eye”, this is an infection of the membrane inside the eyelid and over the white portion of the eye. This infection leads to inflammation of the lining. The term “pink eye” comes from the red coloration of the white portion of the eye that occurs when the blood vessels of the eye become irritated and inflamed.

Pink eye is generally the result of a bacterial or viral infection but can also be caused by an allergic reaction. Though it can be very uncomfortable, it very rarely causes serious problems such as vision loss. It is important to note, however, that this infection is highly contagious so it is critical that as soon as your parent notices the signs of pink eye or is diagnosed with this infection they, and you, take caution to help prevent them from spreading this infection into their other eye or into yours.

Starting elderly home health care for your aging parent is one of the best decisions that you can make for them throughout the course of your caregiver journey with them. An elderly home health care services provider can be with your senior loved one on a customized schedule that is tailored to their specific needs, challenges, and limitations in a way that is right for them.

This means that they can enjoy a lifestyle that is fulfilling, active, and engaged, but that is also safe, comfortable, and healthy. A care provider can create a highly personalized course of care, support, assistance, and encouragement designed to address their personality, goals, and beliefs so that they are able to live the lifestyle that they desire and deserve throughout their later years.

When it comes to helping your elderly loved one deal with a pressing health condition or recover from an illness or infection such as pink eye, this elderly home health care services provider can be with your aging parent to encourage them to comply with their prescriptions and lifestyle goals, make healthy lifestyle choices, and practice aggressive germ control that will allow them to stay healthier as they age in place.

Sources: https://www.cdc.gov/features/conjunctivitis/
http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/pink-eye/basics/definition/con-20022732

If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Health Care Services in Jamaica NY, please contact the caring staff at Gentle Hands Home Care.

Where Can You Look for Support Groups?

Caregiver Bronx NY

Caregiver Bronx NYSupport groups are a fantastic means of gaining information and emotional support if you’re a family caregiver. Finding the right one for you can be a little more challenging than you might think at first, however. With some perseverance, you can find just the right group.

Talk to Your Loved One’s Doctor

Your elderly loved one’s doctor is an excellent first choice when you’re looking for information about support groups. It’s very likely that he already has a handout prepared that he has available whenever a family caregiver is looking for information about local support groups. From there, you can widen your search.

Inquire at the Hospital

Many support groups actually meet at your local hospital. It’s a good environment and usually quite convenient. Try contacting the local hospitals in your area and ask what information they have about support groups. If you’re having a hard time locating a person rather than an automated menu, try the hospital’s website.

Ask at Senior Centers

Senior centers are another excellent source of information about support groups. They can help you find groups for you or for your elderly loved one. Some of those meetings may even happen at the senior centers, which can help you and your elderly loved one make more community connections.

Talk to Senior Agencies

Senior agencies in your area can also help. If you’re having a difficult time finding agencies devoted to helping seniors in your area, try contacting the county health department in your area to get pointed in the right direction. Even if these agencies don’t have support groups or information about groups, they may have other resources that can help you and your loved one.

Do an Internet Search

Although many people might head to the Internet first, it’s a good last step instead. This is especially true if you’re looking primarily for online support groups. Not all local in-person support groups list their meetings online, so you might not find much online about groups in your area. If you can’t attend meetings in person, however, online groups are a wonderful backup choice.

Once you start finding support groups, try attending a meeting to find out if it’s the right fit for you.

If you or an aging loved one are considering Caregiver Services in Bronx NY, please contact the caring staff at Gentle Hands Home Care.

How Dangerous Is a Fall for Your Elder?

Elder Care Brooklyn NY

Elder Care Brooklyn NYIn your role as a family caregiver, you will help your elderly parent through a variety of challenges. One of the most important things that you can do to prepare you to give your elder the best care possible is to understand the dangers that they are facing. This enables you to identify their greatest risks and customize the care that you give them to help ensure that they stay safe and healthy while also encouraging them to continuing living an engaged, active, and fulfilling lifestyle.

One such danger is a fall. Elderly adults are at a far higher fall risk than younger adults, but they can also suffer more serious consequences. Understanding these can help you give your elderly loved one the care that they need to avoid these potentially devastating effects as they age in place.

Some things that you should know about the dangers of falls for elderly adults include:

• The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately one out of every four adults over the age of 64 experience a fall each year.

• 20 percent of falls results in a serious injury. This is one out of every five falls.

• Over 95 percent of hip fractures occur as a result of a fall.

• More than 2.8 million older adults throughout the United States seek medical assistance in emergency departments after suffering falls.

• More than 800,000 older adults throughout the United States must be hospitalized as a result of the injuries that they suffer as a result of falls.

• The most common injuries that elderly adults experience after a fall are hip fractures and traumatic brain injuries.

It is important to keep in mind that experiencing one fall puts your elderly adult at twice the risk of suffering another fall. Consider talking to your aging parent’s doctor about their risk of falling and what you can do to help them reduce this risk or help your parent recover effectively if they do suffer a fall.

If you are concerned about your elderly parent’s fall risk and have been looking for ways to help them stay safer and more secure throughout their later years, starting elder care for them may be the ideal option. An elder home care services provider can be with your elderly loved one on a schedule that is customized specifically for them and for the amount of care and assistance that they need.

This means that the care provider will take into consideration not just your senior’s needs, challenges, and limitations, but also the care that you give to them, their personality, and their lifestyle goals. Through these highly personalized services, this care provider can ensure that your elderly loved one gets the level of care that they need, and the quality of life that they deserve.

When it comes to helping them to reduce their fall risk, this elder home care services provider can help them to identify and abate potential dangers throughout their home, give them physical support and assistance with their personal care tasks, and even encourage them to stay more active and eat a healthier diet to keep their body stronger and more resilient.

Sources:  https://www.ncoa.org/news/resources-for-reporters/get-the-facts/falls-prevention-facts/
https://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreationalsafety/falls/adultfalls.html

If you or an aging loved one are considering Elder Care Services in Brooklyn NY, please contact the caring staff at Gentle Hands Home Care.

How to Get Everyone on the Same Page about a Loved One’s Home Care

Home Care Manhattan NY

Home Care Manhattan NYHaving everyone on the same page regarding your elderly loved one’s health and home care needs is essential for her to get the help that she needs. The problem is that sometimes different family members have dramatically different information about the situation.

Share Information with Everyone Who Needs It

Start out by sharing your loved one’s current health status information with anyone who needs to be aware of this information. You might want to schedule a family meeting, whether that’s in person or through video conferencing. Since everyone may not be in the same area, you may need to set up several meetings in order to catch everyone who needs the information.

Dispel Misinformation

Some elderly loved ones give different information to different relatives about their health. This can even happen among siblings. What happens then is that everyone believes something different about your elderly loved one’s condition. As you’re sharing the correct information, you’re also dispelling misinformation at the same time.

Give Everyone Some Time

Not everyone can adapt to this information as quickly as other people can, so you have to give them time to mentally catch up. As family members do catch up with this new reality, they may be able to offer more assistance with your loved one’s care or offer advice when needed. Some people need more time than others to come to terms with changes to your elderly loved one’s health and condition.

Get Help from Whoever Can Help

As your other family members start to get on board with your elderly loved one’s reality, they can offer you and your loved one more assistance. You may also find that you need more help than you expected or than your loved one’s can offer. In those cases, it’s a good idea to look for assistance from senior agencies in your area or to even hire home care providers. Once you fill in any gaps in your loved one’s care plan, you can start looking at other areas in which you or your loved one need additional help.

Once everyone is caught up, keep them caught up by sharing information regularly and checking in to make sure that they’re up to date.

If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Care Services in Manhattan NY, please contact the caring staff at Gentle Hands Home Care.