Warning signs - When does mom need my help?

Are you starting to see changes with your parents and thinking you need to jump in and help them? Have you offered to help and they refused to do anything differently?  Many times adult chilren will start to worry about their parents, but it's not quite time to change anything.  The list below are some warning signs to let you know they may need some help.

Physical:

Difficulty walking
Frequently falling or unsteadiness (presence of bruising)
Poor hygiene or grooming (wearing stained clothes, body odor, infrequent bathing or washing hair, wearing the same clothes day after day)
Changes in eating habits (snacks only, decreased appetite, eating one meal a day, forgetting to eat, poor food choices, lack of food in the home)
Incontinence
Unsafe home environment (unclean, cluttered walkways, poor lighting, home needing repairs, broken or missing smoke detectors, lack of security-leaving doors unlocked, leaving stove on)
Significant weight loss or gain


Financial:

Unpaid and past due...

Continue Reading...

New Awareness of Everyday Activities – for Caregiver Health

Uncategorized Apr 03, 2020

Today is about nurturing yourself while you’re doing regular activities.

For example, how about enjoying a shower meditation? While you’re showering, take the time to feel the water on your skin, and imagine it washing away the stress of the day.

While you are eating, bring your awareness to the taste of the food in your mouth.  Allow yourself to appreciate you nurturing yourself with healthy food to keep your body vital and healthy.

While you’re walking today, feel your feet touching the ground.  Imagine that every step you take is on sacred ground and that the earth is supporting you.  Bring your awareness to the flowers along your path, and appreciate who made them.

Bring your awareness to your breath.  Take deep, cleansing breaths and feel your lungs expanding and oxygenating your cells. When you breathe out, exhale stress and judgment, and inhale loving and calm.

Take everyday activities and bring your awareness to them in a fresh, new way...

Continue Reading...

Alzheimer’s and Eating: Colorful Ideas

Uncategorized Apr 03, 2020

Brightly colored tableware may be the key to getting Alzheimer’s patients to eat and drink more.

Significant weight loss can be seen in about 40% of people with severe Alzheimer’s disease.  This has most often been attributed to depression and eating difficulties, but a study that was conducted in 2004 and is published in the journal Clinical Nutrition, has indicated that vision problems might be the cause.

Serving meals on brightly colored tableware may encourage greater food consumption among patients suffering from Alzheimer’s.  This study showed that people with Alzheimer’s disease experienced a 24% increase in food intake and 84% increase in liquid intake when served on bright red or brightly colored blue tableware and cutlery as compared to white tableware and stainless-steel silverware.

If you are having trouble getting your Alzheimer’s patient to eat, consider using high-contrast tableware.  This is an easy and inexpensive...

Continue Reading...

Aging Humor

Uncategorized Apr 03, 2020

Q:  How can you avoid that terrible curse of the elderly—–wrinkles?

A:  Take off your glasses and you won’t see them.

Q:  Is it common for 60+ year olds to have problems with short term memory storage?

A:  Storing memory is not a problem, retrieving it is a problem.

Q: What is the most common remark made by 60+ year olds when they enter antique stores?

A: “‘Gosh, I remember these.”

Continue Reading...

Reduced Social Activity Linked to More Rapid Loss of Motor Function in Older Adults

Uncategorized Apr 03, 2020

Loss of muscle strength, speed and dexterity is a common consequence of aging, and a well-established risk factor for death, disability and dementia. Yet little is known about how and why motor decline occurs when it is not a symptom of disease.  Motor functions enable us to act and move.

Researchers at Rush University Medical Center have found that, among the elderly, less frequent participation in social activities is associated with a more rapid decline in motor function.   “It’s not just running around the track that is good for you,” said Dr. Aron Buchman. “Our findings suggest that engaging in social activities may also be protective against loss of motor abilities.”

These results raise the possibility that motor function decline can be slowed by encouraging people to engage in social activities, such as doing volunteer work, visiting friends or relatives, or attending church or sporting events. 

 

“There is gathering...

Continue Reading...

COVID19 and Swine Flu Prevention Tips

Uncategorized Apr 01, 2020

6 Steps to Preventing the Spread of Virus or Flu: Good Health Habits Can Stop Germs

  1. Avoid close contact.

Avoid close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick too.

  1. Stay home when you are sick.

If possible, stay home from work, school, and errands when you are sick. You will help prevent others from catching your illness.

  1. Cover your mouth and nose.

Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. It may prevent those around you from getting sick.

  1. Clean your hands.

Washing your hands often will help protect you from germs.

  1. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.

Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose, or mouth.

6.Practice other good health habits.

Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious food.

One-stop access to U.S. Government...

Continue Reading...

What can you do for your country, and yourself?

Uncategorized Apr 01, 2020

Our 44th president asked for each of us to look at where we might be able to change in order to help our country. Caregivers are serving already, making a significant difference to our country by keeping the long term care costs lower.

As caregivers, here are some questions to reflect upon if you are called to…

  1. How can I take even better loving care of myself?
  2. How can I serve my community or my family?
  3. What can I give back?
  4. Are there ways that I can take better care of the environment?
  5. Are there ways I can better live within my financial means?
  6. Is there an area in my life where I might better choose peace?
Continue Reading...

6 Questions Caregivers Can Ask Themselves to Make This a Truly Happy Holiday Season

Uncategorized Apr 01, 2020

Have you recently found yourself thinking about the upcoming holidays with a sense of dread? Perhaps you see yourself sitting at the table surrounded by your family, the smells of turkey and pumpkin pie wafting in from the kitchen, but you are overcome with a sense of sadness or disappointment. Now that things may be different with your parents, it’s a good time to ask yourself, what do I really want my holidays to look and feel like? Traditions are funny things. They can be comforting and depressing all at the same time. But you have the power to create the experience you truly want.

You might ask yourself these questions about what you really want this holiday season:

  1. Do I like my family traditions just as they are, or am I participating to make someone else happy or comfortable?
  2. Where do I want to be?
  3. Who do I want to be with?
  4. What experience am I looking for?
  5. Is there a new tradition I want to start this year?
  6. How can I get the experience I most desire?

Once you...

Continue Reading...

Benjamin Button strikes a chord

Uncategorized Apr 01, 2020

Over the holidays I chose not only to relax, but went to see “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” a movie depicting a man aging in reverse.

I work with older people everyday, as a geriatric care manager. I also have a 19 month old daughter. I often come home after visiting clients, struck by the similarities between the human experiences of those in old age and infancy.  Diapers, soft foods, a limited vocabulary, dependency on another, and the need for patience, compassion and a sense of humor from those who are caring for them.

This topic of aging is rich with material! The movie moved me to think about friends, human kindness, love and loss.  I was awash with memories and reminded of how important it is to cherish each moment (this too shall pass) and to follow my heart, no matter what. I was moved by the women caregivers in this movie who had such compassion.  They demonstrated the capacity to love what others might consider unlovable.

I was also...

Continue Reading...

Aging means changing

Uncategorized Apr 01, 2020

I’ve been contemplating why it is that most people loathe the idea of growing older. If you ask someone’s age, many people hesitate to answer, as if not admitting it will slow the aging process.  Is it all about the potential loss – loss of independence, loss of mental, physical or sensory abilities?

While working with my 20-month old daughter in her bottle drinking habits, I realized – humans don’t easily embrace change at any age. My daughter likes bottles in the morning, nap time and before bed. Who wouldn’t! She wants things to stay the same. She is not liking the change. It is not easy to change as we age, at any age.

Can I look at aging as changing – instead of something to dread, fear, fight or ignore? Can I embrace the change, even celebrate?  I am going to age whether I like it or not.

Again, I am reminded that this is an attitude. The good news about that is that my attitude is something I have control over.

More...

Continue Reading...
1 2 3 4 5
Close

50% Complete

Peace of mind in your pocket.

Get on-call support from the privacy of your phone. Sign up below to receive text advice, and access to a trove of dementia resources for members.