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Posted by on in Senior Health

 

 

Tips on communicating with the elderly

As people grow older, they become more difficult to understand and even changes in their environment can have an impact on their communication. Many Elderly and disabled people struggle with hearing, reading and writing, General communications skills.  Many elderly or disabled people have short-term memory loss so a conversation that you may have just had with them is one they can easily forget.  Lots of patients and compassion is key.

 

Here are some ways to help your communication with a loved one who is elderly or disabled.

 

  • Maintain eye contact and speak clearly and directly to them (Loud tone if hearing is an issue)
  • Be as simple as possible (small words, short sentences, and visual aids).
  • Try not to argue with the elder it may over excite them or upset them.
  • Recall what you are stating to the elder (restate key ideas of the topic frequently/ repeat key points)
  • Exercise patients and compassion
  • Ask instead of order and demand
  • Ask instead of assuming
  • Offer choices when possible
  • Use “I” instead of “YOU” People do not like to be demanded. It may cause them to be upset.

 

Examples:

“You must exercise today!”

“You need to finish your soup”

Instead use the “I” language

“I will help you exercise today!”

“Let’s finish your soup, Okay?”

 

 

 

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Did you know that the (CDC) Centers for Disease Control and prevention rated (COMPLICATIONS) from Parkinson’s disease as the 14th top cause of Death in the United States?

Parkinson’s disease itself is not fatal, but the complications can be serious. For Example, Difficulty swallowing can lead a patient to aspirate food into lungs which can than lead to Pneumonia or other pulmonary conditions. In addition, loss of balance can lead to a fall that may cause serious injuries or even death.  Incidents depend greatly on a patients overall health and age.

Parkinson's disease is a neurodegenerative brain disorder that progresses slowly overtime in most people who have the disease.  Symptoms take years to develop and those with Parkinson’s live years with the disease.

 

Here Are 10 Early Warning signs of the disease:

 

  1. Trouble moving or walking (Stiffness in body, arms, or legs
  2. Constipation
  3. soft low voice (If there has been a change in voice, your voice is soft when speaking
  4. Masked face (Have you been told that you look: mad, serious, depressed and your NOT)
  5. Dizziness of fainting ( fainting or dizzy, also signs of low blood pressure
  6. Hunching over or stooping
  7. Tremors or shaking (in your finger, thumb, hand, chin, or lip)
  8. Small Handwriting (Overtime writing  may get smaller and smaller)
  9. Loss of smell (Trouble smelling certain foods: bananas, pickles, of licorice
  10. Trouble sleeping (Sudden movement during sleep)

 

 

 

 

 

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Posted by on in health_care

Tip of the Day: Sitting is the new smoking

 

Research shows that if you sit for long periods of time it puts you at risk, even if you are spending time at the gym working out!

The good news is, it all counts!

 

ALL activity counts in the direction of a healthier, happier you. Here are some simple tips that can help you to increase your overall health

Simple changes you can begin to make today:

 

*Stand instead of sit while on the phone.

*Swing your foot, tap your toes, or drum your fingers.

*If you like to listen to music move to the music while getting dressed

*Park the car farther away

*Use the stairs instead of the elevator

*Get up and stretch every half hour if you have a desk job

 

These simple changes can make a world of difference in your physical appearance as well as your outlook on life!

What are you waiting for?  There’s no better time than today to decide to get started!!

 

 

 

 

 

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Posted by on in health_care

 

Do you remember the last time you were physically active on purpose?? IE: went to the gym, jogged or even just simply went for a walk? Did you know that new research shows that exercise helps protect older adults' brains from memory loss and mental decline. In fact the UofM found, in their research that physical fitness reverses brain shrinkage. which is tied to Alzheimer's disease. 34 inactive participants ranging in age 61-68 engaged in a 12-week exercise regimen and the findings were impressive to say the least. They were shown to have improvements with their heart and lung function, and also the brain increased in thickness in the region that typically shrinks from Alzheimer's. You can find the study published in the Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society.

 

I Hope you found this helpful and will consider the benefits of being more active and decide to get moving and save your brain.

 

 

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This Desert HEAT is NO JOKE!! Here is a video with some helpful information to keep in mind!!! Please drink lots of water and stay HYDRATED!! Keep our elderly SAFE & COOL. Hope you all have a BEAUTIFUL DAY!

 

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When the thyroid is not working properly, the body is not using energy at the rate is should be and can cause many different health problems.

Thyroid disease is broken down into two main categories:

 

1. Hypothyroidism which is an underactive thyroid include - fatigue, constipation, depression, hair loss, weight gain, dry skin, hoarse voice, muscle aches, forgetfulness, and lack of mental clarity.

Treatment: Hypothyroidism - would be a gradual hormone replacement therapy.

Hypothyroidism is more common in adults over 60 and steadily increases with age. As many as 1 in 4 nursing home residents have hypothyroidism that goes undiagnosed.

 

2. Hyperthyroidism which is an overactive thyroid include - the functions of the body tend to speed up and cause symptoms such as excessive perspiration, rapid heart rate, slight tremors, increased bowel movements, weight loss, nervousness, fatigue, lack of mental clarity, and irregular heart rhythms.

Treatment: Hyperthyroidism can include - antithyroid drugs and radioactive iodine.

 

It is not uncommon for thyroid disease to look like heart or bowel disease or a nervous system disorder. Therefore, in older adults who may only present a couple of the symptoms of thyroid disease, it may go undiagnosed.

 

Testing: Usually a blood test and imaging test can be used to diagnose thyroid disease.

Thyroid disease is primarily a genetic disease

Prevention: Suggestions include proper exercisereducing stressnot smoking,RDA Iodine.

Requirements: lifelong follow-up for the more common Hypothyroid disease

Because lifelong follow-up is required, a great option for your loved one would be to hire a caregiver who can accompany them to their doctor appointments, and take notes recording what the doctor suggests.  This will aid them to have an improved quality of life. If the doctor changes their medications, the caregiver can take note of it for you.

If you or your loved one is dealing with a diagnosis of thyroid disease and you need some extra help, call ElderCaring to find out how we can help.  We will connect you with a qualified caregiver to help make life easier and enhance quality of life for you and your loved ones. You don’t have to do this alone. If you are the primary caregiver for your loved one, we can come alongside you to provide respite care and give you time off for yourself.  We have full-time and part-time options.

Call today to set up a free in-home consultation to discuss your options.

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Vision loss can cause your world to become a frightening place, especially if it is caused by a sudden, traumatic event.  Your once simple, seemingly mundane life has been turned around.

*Tasks you had previously completed with ease, are now much more complicated.

*Family members will want to keep you safe and protected, but this can often lead to smothering.  Those with vision loss should be encouraged to become independent once again.  This will help the person with the vision loss as well as the family member.  Often times, family members caring for an aging, sick or visually impaired loved one can become overwhelmed with the responsibility.

*This is when a qualified caregiver can come in to relieve the stress of the family members, while at the same time allow their loved one to regain some of that independence which was lost.  At ElderCaring, we can connect you with a caregiver to do just that.  Our caregivers can help with light housework, personal hygiene, laundry, meal planning and preparation, organization, escort to doctor’s appointments, and much more.  When dealing with someone who has recent vision loss, it can feel like a monumental task to organize each area of the home for ease and safety.  Our caregivers can help organize closets, pantries, cupboards, bathrooms, etc. to make it easier for those with vision loss to find what they need when they are alone.  This will give them greater independence.  We also provide live-in assistance if you feel you loved one needs around-the-clock care. This may be a short-term option for those with very recent vision loss until they regain some independence.  You can easily transition from 24 hour assistance to fewer hours as needed.  Whatever your need, know you are not alone in this.  ElderCaring will be there with a screened, qualified caregiver for as long as needed.

Questions to ask yourself if you or your loved one are dealing with vision loss:

Are you feeling overwhelmed and not sure what to do?

Are you feeling overwhelmed by the responsibility of taking care of your loved one experiencing vision loss?

If you answered yes to either of these questions then you could definitely benefit from the support of an in-home caregiver backed by the top agency servicing Palm Springs, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, Indio, Indian Wells and Cathedral City. Get the support you need now before your health becomes an issue, because you need to be healthy in order to be there for your loved ones who depend upon you for help.

Isn't it time you called today to get that long awaited and much needed help?

Call us today for a free, no-obligation home assessment.

 

For some helpful information on vision and brain injury, here is a link to an article written by Thomas Politzer, O.D.  Former President of the Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Association:

Introduction to Vision & Brain Injury

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Posted by on in Senior Health

What is glaucoma?

It is the leading cause of blindness. In the US, 9%-11% of all cases of blindness are caused by glaucoma. An estimated 3 million Americans have glaucoma, but only half of those know it. It is a disease that causes damage to the optic nerve due to high pressure in the eye. There is no cure for glaucoma, but if caught early, it is possible to stop further vision loss. There may be no symptoms, such as pain or pressure in the eye, to warn you that you have glaucoma. It may begin with loss of peripheral vision or small blind spots in the field of vision. The fluid in your eye is constantly being cycled and is regulated to maintain the balance between the fluid being produced and the fluid filtered out. If this becomes unbalanced, it changes the pressure in your eye and can damage your optic nerve. Because of the lack of symptoms, it is important to have regular eye exams. The intraocular pressure check and visual field tests can alert you to high pressure in your eye. Early glaucoma treatment can avoid any damage to the optic nerve and vision.

If you or a loved one suffers from glaucoma, it is possible to slow the progression of the disease by combining medical treatment with supplements and lifestyle changes. Here are a few suggestions:

 

  1. Eat fresh vegetables every day, make your meals as colorful as possible.

  2. Take a good vitamin/mineral supplement.

  3. Exercise daily.

  4. Have regular appointments with your doctor.

Living with low vision or blindness:

Sometimes, people with vision loss find it hard to ask for help, for fear of being a nuisance. Tasks that once required no thought, such as hanging a picture, now require the help of a friend or caregiver. When offering to help, you should be specific. Instead of, “Give me a call if you need anything.” say something like, “I'm going shopping, would you like to come along?”

You can also provide help in their home by reducing clutter and removing throw rugs, increasing lighting (halogen bulbs are best for those with low vision), use lampshades and sheer curtains to reduce glare, purchase address stickers for any forms they may need to fill out, encourage them to use voice memos instead of written shopping lists, increase the contrast between items such as the stove and pots or table/counter and dishes, use wide tape that contrasts with the carpet/wall color to outline stairs and electrical outlets, use large print labels for pantry items and keep them organized – putting them back in the same place each time they are used.

 

Be My Eyes is a great app for those who need assistance with small things like checking a food label at a grocery store or the expiration date on the milk in their fridge. Click on the link for more information:

BeMyEyes

If you would like assistance while you are dealing with the effects of glaucoma, contact us at ElderCaring. We would love to connect you with a caregiver to help ease the stress of meal planning/preparation and doctor appointments, and provide you with many other services.

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Retirement is supposed to be stress-free, a time of relaxation and wisdom to deal with life’s little annoyances. However, many people find that as they age there are new things to worry, fret, and stress over. These include such things as financial concerns, dealing with loss, and maintaining good health. Stress can lead to depression and withdrawal from activities with others. Stress in the elderly is not something to be suffered alone, but requires management with the help of family, friends or a caregiver to ease the burden. Here are a few solutions to help deal with stress:

Make a list

  • Talk it out or write it down and identify the root of the stress so that you can begin to find solutions.

 

Think and be thankful

  • Take some time alone to sit quietly and think through all the things in your life for which you can be truly grateful.

 

Exercise

  • Find an activity you enjoy that is not too strenuous, but will help to refresh your mood.
  • Go for a walk outside. Enjoying the great outdoors can significantly reduce stress.

 

Do something new or different

  • Switching up your routine can lift your spirits. Learn a new skill, or just find a good place to people-watch.

 

Consider performing a random act of kindness

  • When you take your eyes off of yourself and focus on helping someone else, your problems can seem much smaller.
  • If you are able to, pay for the person behind you in the drive-thru, or the meal of someone else in the restaurant in which you are dining. If you are crafty or artistic, make a few small items or drawings to hand out to people. Compliment a stranger. Smile sincerely, and see how many smiles you get in return. Call an old friend or family member you haven’t talked to in a long time. Teach someone a skill you have acquired through your many years. Give someone in your world a pat on the back for a job well done.

 

Don’t isolate yourself

  • Find a group of friends you can get together with, join a club, or get involved with a local charity.

 

If you or your elderly loved one is having trouble with a stressful situation, and you could use some relief, ElderCaring can connect you with a caregiver who can step in and give you a helping hand. We would love to go over ways we can help you reduce the stress in your life. Contact us to set up a consultation today!


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