When A Parent Moves In. What To Do?

When a Parent Moves In: How to Get Your House Ready

Unpacking

Preparing for your parent or other older adult’s arrival

If you’ve decided to move your parent, or another family member into your home, it’s time to think about the specifics. Start big — where will she sleep, how will she get around — then tackle the details of making your home a comfortable and safe place for her to spend her time.

Just as you’d babyproof to make your home safer for young children, it’s a smart move to “elder-proof” your house to make it safer for an aging adult. Not only can taking these steps prevent nasty accidents, it will also make life a lot easier and more comfortable for her.

  • Initial changes Some fixes are easy and inexpensive — grab bars in the bathroom and nonslip mats under throw rugs, for example. If she’s less mobile and your home has stairs, you may decide to put in a more expensive ramp or stair-lift. And all sorts of devices — from easy-opening door handles to walk-in bathtubs — are available to make her life in your home much more manageable.
  • Ground rules If you live on one level, you’re in luck. For older adults, a one-story home is ideal. If your home has more than one story, it’s easiest and safest if her bedroom and bathroom are on the first floor, along with the kitchen, so she won’t have to negotiate stairs.
  • Getting around It’s also preferable to have no steps or raised thresholds between one room and the next. These potential falling hazards create barriers that can be difficult to negotiate for someone who’s frail.

Setting up house

If you have a spare bedroom on the first floor of your house, you’re in good shape. If not, perhaps you can convert a dining room, den, or office into a bedroom.

Choosing a space

  • Could an attic or basement room be converted into a bedroom, which could then be used by one of your children while the older adult takes the child’s old room on the first floor?
  • There should be enough privacy so everyone feels comfortable. Will you need to add on a room to have enough living space? This could easily run into the tens of thousands of dollars, but it could still be cheaper over the long run — and might make the person happier — than an assisted living situation.

As an alternative, if it’s a parent you’re dealing with, you might want to consider selling your home and your parent’s current home and buying a larger place that will make everyone more comfortable. Many families pool their resources in this way to find a better living space for themselves and their elderly parent. If you have siblings, this decision also involves them, of course, because at least part of any future inheritance would be used to purchase the larger home.

  • If possible, bring some of the older adult’s furniture into your home, like a favorite couch or reclininer. Even if it doesn’t fit with your decor, this touch of home will help her feel more at ease from the beginning.
  • If she has a pet, try to make room for it in your house. Giving up a pet could be very difficult, and having a beloved animal will help lessen the loneliness she may feel while getting used to her new environment. Of course, you’ll have to consider whether her pet can get along with your pets and children. You may also need to make some cha nges to your home and yard (such as fencing it in) to accommodate a dog.
  • Get her a cell phone to give her a greater sense of independence and help her feel connected to the outside world. This will make it easier for her friends to call her directly, without bothering other family members. And it’s a good way for her to get help in an emergency. An extra line with its own number will cost as little as $10 a month if you already have a cell phone plan. If she isn’t adept with cell phones, the handset could be programmed so she only has to touch one key (say, the 1 key) to call you and a different key to call the local police department.

How to Make Your Home Safer for an Elderly Loved One

As people age, they need more lighting, and obstacles or hazards should be cleared out of their way or made safe, says Donna Schempp, program director for Family Caregiver Alliance in San Francisco. Falls can be very dangerous for older adults and can result in a major injury. Some steps to take to keep an older adult safe:

  • Anti-slip mats. These mats, often made of rubber or a similar material, fit under throw rugs to increase traction, greatly decreasing the chances of a fall. Of course, you can also solve the problem by simply removing throw rugs — as long as you don’t have slick, waxed wood floors, which also can be a hazard.
  • Furniture bumpers. Clear plastic bumpers fit over sharp furniture corners to soften the edges. Alternatively, remove sharp-edged furniture from the room. Unsteady chairs should be replaced as well.
  • Bins for obstacles. If you’re used to leaving toys and other objects lying on the floor, you’ll need to start picking them up. Pick a spot that’s out of the way and set up a large basket to serve as a catchall for things that tend to end up on the floor.
  • Good lighting. Not just the rooms in your house need to be well lit: Make sure walkw ays, hallways, and entryways are illuminated, too. Lighting should be bright but not harsh or blinding.
  • Modifications for a wheelchair. If your new housemate uses a wheelchair (or may need one soon), check that the doorways and hallways of your home will be wide enough for her to get around. Wheelchairs require a minimum of 32 inches — 36 inches is recommended. Hallways should be at least 36 inches wide. If possible, there should be extra floor space so a wheelchair can turn around. It takes about 60 inches of space for someone in a wheelchair to make a 180-degree turn.
  • Door and window sensors. If she has Alzheimer’s and tends to wander off, you may need either special door locks that will keep doors shut or chimes to alert you to her attempts to leave the house. Window sensors with remote alarms are also available.
  • Special doorknobs and window pulls. Older adults may not have the hand or arm strength to open a door using a regular knob. Arthritis can rob even a relatively strong person of the ability to grasp something hard enough to turn it. Consider replacing conventional knobs with easier-to-use lever door handles — or look into an automatic door opener that opens and closes with the touch of a button or by voice activation (around $1,500). Search the Internet by typing automatic door opener. You can also find products that make opening windows easier.
  • Accessible shelving. As people get older, the simple act of bending down or reaching up can become an ordeal. If possible, put extra shelves in closets, pantries, or cabinets at heights an older adult can reach without a struggle. If she’s in a wheelchair, or you anticipate she may be soon, adjustable brackets will enable you to change the height as needed.

Other changes inside and out

Outside the house and between stories

  • Ramps. If there are steps leading to the entrance to your home, can she handle them? If not, you may need to put in a ramp. They start at about $400 for a 4-foot ramp that’s 36 inches wide; an 8-foot ramp is about $800. Do a search using the keywords home ramp.
  • Chair lifts. If you can’t put her on the first floor and she doesn’t do well with stairs, consider an electric stair-climbing chair lift. They generally cost between $1,500 and $4,000. Another option is a home elevator or a platform lift to take her up and down. The cost of home elevators varies widely, but you can expect to pay $15,000 or more. You can find more information by searching the keywords stair lifts or home elevators.

In the bathroom

  • Grab bars and adhesive strips. Grab bars in the tub or shower and besid e the toilet will help her lift and lower herself. These are inexpensive ($40 to $140), and they’re potential lifesavers when it comes to preventing falls. Low-cost no-slip adhesive strips decrease the risk of slippery bathroom areas and steps. Other bathroom additions to consider:
  • Walk-in bathtub. These roundish tubs have a door that opens so she doesn’t have to step over the side to get into the tub. Do a search for these by typing walk-in bathtub.
  • Bath lift. A person sits in this tub-level chair and uses a waterproof remote to lower herself into the tub. The chair then raises her back up after the bath. Some models recline and have other features ($500 to $2,000).
  • Anti-scalding devices. These inexpensive devices (about $40) automatically turn off the water if it gets too hot. They can easily be installed in the bathroom sink, shower, tub, or kitchen sink. An alternative solution: Turn down the thermostat on your hot-water heater so the water never gets above 120 degrees Fahrenheit.

In the bedroom

  • Temperature controls. An older adult may like it a lot warmer than the rest of the family. To keep everyone comfortable and your utility bills under control, it’s best to have a separate thermostat in her bedroom. If that isn’t feasible, a portable space heater may keep her comfortable.

Monitors and alarm systems

  • Baby monitors and walkie-talkies. Sometimes a simple device can make a huge difference. If an older adult’s room isn’t near yours, for example, an audio or video monitor can save you a lot of trips back and forth. (Obviously, you have to consider her need for privacy, so this is something the two of you will need to discuss beforehand.) A two-way walkie-talkie system can help you easily communicate with her anywhere in the house.
  • Personal emergency response system. If you’re going to be out a lot and worry about her being alone, you can sign her up for a personal emergency response system, or PERS. (See our PERS buying guide .) These systems, which work through a console that plugs into your phone line, enable an older adult to summon emergency help with the push of a button.

A live operator at an emergency response center will respond to her call, sending a paramedic or ambulance, if necessary, or, if it’s a minor problem, contacting you or a neighbor to check in on her. These systems can be rented on a monthly basis from the American Red Cross (through Lifeline Systems) and from individual providers. They generally cost $25 to $35 a month for the ongoing serv ice, which is available 24/7, 365 days a year.

  • Wrist monitors . These devices can record a person’s heart rate, blood pressure, and stress level and automatically send a signal to your cell phone or PDA if the measurements get dangerously low or high (from $1,000).
  • TV silencer. For older adults with hearing problems, this device automatically mutes the TV, stereo, or DVD player whenever the phone rings, so she won’t miss important calls.

Two big-ticket items that might be worth the money

  • Three- or four-wheeled scooter or golf cart. These help older adults get around outside if they’re too weak or unstable to walk. They vary widely in size and price, from about $350 to $3,000. Golf carts generally cost $4,000 and up. Scooters and carts can also be rented weekly or monthly. Do a search using the keywords electric scooter or golf cart.
  • Hospital bed or adjustable bed. These enable you to raise or lower the head and knee area of the bed, as well as the level of the entire bed, either electronically or through the use of hand cranks. The flexibility of these beds makes life easier and more comfortable for someone who’s ailing. They generally cost $500 and up. You can find them by doing an Internet search using the keywords home hospital bed or adjustable bed.

We Have a free safety guide we can send you. Call 850-354-5336 or email; sgagne@caringconnectionsllc.com

Caring Connections In-Home Senior Care

267 John Knox Rd Suite 111

Tallahassee, Fl. 32303

850-354-5336  Family Owned and operated!! We care for your loved ones as you would.

HHA#299994634

Dementia vs Alzheimer’s

Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease 101: The Difference and Why it Matters

Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease are often spoken about interchangeably, but they are not the same condition. During Dementia Awareness Week, we want to share the different types of dementia and the warning signs.

Dementia vs. Alzheimer’s

Dementia is a general term that describes a wide range of symptoms associated with a decline in memory or other thinking skills, including judgment, reasoning, and complex motor skills. There are several dementia-related illnesses, and Alzheimer’s is one of them.

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia and accounts for 60–80% of dementia cases. It is a chronic disease that causes memory loss or difficulty thinking or problem-solving to the point where it interferes with everyday activities. Alzheimer’s disease can progress to the point where a person doesn’t remember their own family and might undergo a complete personality change.

Other types of dementia include:

  • Vascular dementia: A decline in memory and thinking skills brought on by blockage or reduction of blood flow to the brain that deprives the brain of oxygen and nutrients. Risk factors are similar to those for heart problems, stroke, and other diseases that affect blood vessels.
  • Lewy Body dementia (LBD): An umbrella term that refers to both Parkinsons disease dementia and dementia with Lewy bodies, which are protein deposits that develop in nerve cells in the brain regions involved in thinking, memory, and movement.
  • Frontotemporal dementia (FTD): The Mayo Clinic describes FTD as a diverse group of uncommon disorders that primarily affect the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain the areas generally associated with personality, behavior, and language.

These dementia-related illnesses are not a normal part of aging, and in order to limit your chances of getting dementia and/or to better manage the condition, its important to know the symptoms and the prevention techniques that are most effective.

Preventing dementia

The biggest risk factors for these conditions are things you often can’t control, including age, family history, and genetics. However, the good news is that studies suggest that lifestyle changes can slow or prevent onset.

  • Exercise:Staying active isn’t just good for your heart; its also great for your brain.
  • Sleep:Your brain does important stuff while you are sleeping, so getting at least 7 hours of deep sleep a night is crucial.
  • Be smart about your diet:Research suggests that the foods you eat can affect your brain health, both for the better and for the worse.
  • Control other chronic conditions:Keep your blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar within recommended limits.
  • Be mindful of harmful substances:Limit alcohol use and eliminate smoking.
  • Challenge your brain:Try small things, such as brushing your teeth or eating with your non-dominant hand.
  • Continue to pursue favorite hobbies or take up new ones:Art, music, gardening, and learning a new language are just a few that can help keep your mind active.
  • Manage stress:Relaxation techniques, such as yoga or meditation, can be helpful.
  • Use your health care:Visit your doctor or health care professional regularly and be sure to stay up-to-date on preventive screenings and benefits.

Warning signs and symptoms

The following are some common warning signs and symptoms of dementia. Keep in mind that every individual is unique and may not exhibit all of them. Always consult a physician to discuss changes in memory and thinking abilities.A thorough assessment by your physician or a specialist, such as a neurologist, can determine what is causing these symptoms.

  • Difficulty finding words
  • Trouble completing multi-step tasks
  • Challenges with identifying time, person, or place
  • Misplacing familiar objects
  • Personality changes
  • Loss of interest in important responsibilities
  • Expressing false beliefs
  • Changes in judgment

Whether you are a professional, family member, friend, spouse, or community member, it is beneficial to understand different causes that can impact ones memory other than the potential presence of dementia.

Physical health changes, such as a vitamin deficiency, thyroid problem, urinary tract infection, medication side effects, stress, Substance abuse, and depression may all cause changes in memory and other symptoms of dementia, such as confusion. A thorough assessment by your physician or specialist, such as a neurologist can determine what is causing these symptoms.

Take action

Although it can be scary or challenging to acknowledge changes within ourselves or someone close to us, it is important to do so and take action.

Early detection of memory issues can allow you to participate in care planning decisions and explore clinical trials. For some, receiving a diagnosis also can provide some relief in knowing that its not something they are doing but rather something that is occurring in them.

Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease 101: The Difference and Why it Matters

Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease are often spoken about interchangeably, but they are not the same condition. During Dementia Awareness Week, we want to share the different types of dementia and the warning signs.

Dementia vs. Alzheimer’s

Dementia is a general term that describes a wide range of symptoms associated with a decline in memory or other thinking skills, including judgment, reasoning, and complex motor skills. There are several dementia-related illnesses, and Alzheimer’s is one of them.

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia and accounts for 60–80% of dementia cases. It is a chronic disease that causes memory loss or difficulty thinking or problem-solving to the point where it interferes with everyday activities. Alzheimer’s disease can progress to the point where a person doesn’t remember their own family and might undergo a complete personality change.

Other types of dementia include:

  • Vascular dementia: A decline in memory and thinking skills brought on by blockage or reduction of blood flow to the brain that deprives the brain of oxygen and nutrients. Risk factors are similar to those for heart problems, stroke, and other diseases that affect blood vessels.
  • Lewy Body dementia (LBD): An umbrella term that refers to both Parkinson’s disease dementia and dementia with Lewy bodies, which are protein deposits that develop in nerve cells in the brain regions involved in thinking, memory, and movement.
  • Frontotemporal dementia (FTD): The Mayo Clinic describes FTD as a diverse group of uncommon disorders that primarily affect the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain the areas generally associated with personality, behavior, and language.

These dementia-related illnesses are not a normal part of aging, and in order to limit your chances of getting dementia and/or to better manage the condition, its important to know the symptoms and the prevention techniques that are most effective.

Preventing dementia

The biggest risk factors for these conditions are things you often can’t control, including age, family history, and genetics. However, the good news is that studies suggest that lifestyle changes can slow or prevent onset.

  • Exercise:Staying active isn’t just good for your heart; its also great for your brain.
  • Sleep:Your brain does important stuff while you are sleeping, so getting at least 7 hours of deep sleep a night is crucial.
  • Be smart about your diet:Research suggests that the foods you eat can affect your brain health, both for the better and for the worse.
  • Control other chronic conditions:Keep your blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar within recommended limits.
  • Be mindful of harmful substances:Limit alcohol use and eliminate smoking.
  • Challenge your brain:Try small things, such as brushing your teeth or eating with your non-dominant hand.
  • Continue to pursue favorite hobbies or take up new ones:Art, music, gardening, and learning a new language are just a few that can help keep your mind active.
  • Manage stress:Relaxation techniques, such as yoga or meditation, can be helpful.
  • Use your health care:Visit your doctor or health care professional regularly and be sure to stay up-to-date on preventive screenings and benefits.

Warning signs and symptoms

The following are some common warning signs and symptoms of dementia. Keep in mind that every individual is unique and may not exhibit all of them. Always consult a physician to discuss changes in memory and thinking abilities.A thorough assessment by your physician or a specialist, such as a neurologist, can determine what is causing these symptoms.

  • Difficulty finding words
  • Trouble completing multi-step tasks
  • Challenges with identifying time, person, or place
  • Misplacing familiar objects
  • Personality changes
  • Loss of interest in important responsibilities
  • Expressing false beliefs
  • Changes in judgment

Whether you are a professional, family member, friend, spouse, or community member, it is beneficial to understand different causes that can impact ones memory other than the potential presence of dementia.

Physical health changes, such as a vitamin deficiency, thyroid problem, urinary tract infection, medication side effects, stress, Substance abuse, and depression may all cause changes in memory and other symptoms of dementia, such as confusion. A thorough assessment by your physician or specialist, such as a neurologist can determine what is causing these symptoms.

Take action

Although it can be scary or challenging to acknowledge changes within ourselves or someone close to us, it is important to do so and take action.

Early detection of memory issues can allow you to participate in care planning decisions and explore clinical trials. For some, receiving a diagnosis also can provide some relief in knowing that its not something they are doing but rather something that is occurring in them.

 

Sundowners; The Effect Of Light, Sound and Food

Sundowners causes are numerous.  The term “sundowners” refers to how an elderly person who has cognitive impairment or dementia, may start to act confused, angry, or have other disturbing behaviors in the afternoon or early evening – thus “sundowners” syndrome. It may be comforting to know that sundowners syndrome is a well-known phenomenon but the sundowners causes are not as well known.

Some sundowners causes include certain common causes and triggers, such as changes brought about by food and light, may be things a caregiver wants to be on the watch for to predict sundowners syndrome as the sun sets in order to give their loved one the best care during this often trying time of day.

Observing sundown syndrome and diet

A variety of contributing influences may affect the frequency and severity of the episodes from which an elderly person may suffer. Keep in mind that there are a wide range of sundowners causes that can contribute to sundowners syndrome; if you notice something that seems to trigger an episode, it would be well worth your time to experiment with reducing that particular factor in order to determine whether it has an ameliorative effect on your elderly loved one.

An elderly person’s diet can be a significant contributor to sundown syndrome. If your elderly loved one is not eating well enough, hunger pangs can actually contribute to the severity of the episodes. Someone who is already confused and somewhat anxious about their surroundings will be more prone to outbursts if the situation is complicated by hunger.

Further, after a meal—especially a large one—blood pressure will drop while the body focuses on beginning the digestion process. A side effect of this reduced blood pressure is that there will be a smaller amount of oxygen reaching the brain. In sufferers of sundown syndrome, this reduced oxygen level can contribute to an episode, especially if the situation is already complicated by other potential triggers.

In addition, in cases where the elderly person is a diabetic or a borderline diabetic, he or she may react adversely to the change in the glucose level in his or her bloodstream. While a normal, healthy person might experience an unexpected feeling of tiredness or sudden elevated energy levels depending on the situation, a person with dementia or other cognitive impairment will not know how to interpret these feelings, and this may contribute to an elevated sense of anxiety, fear, or hostility.

How does your elderly loved one perceive his or her environment?

Other sundowners causes that can trigger an episode of sundown syndrome are physiological issues that affect your elderly loved one’s ability to see or hear well. An elderly dementia sufferer is likely already experiencing some level of confusion and anxiety. If he or she loses the ability to see or hear at the same level to which he or she is accustomed, this will only add to the situation.

Changes in the environmental setting in regard to light or sound may contribute to sundown syndrome. Is a light bulb that used to remain on now off? Is something now blocking a light source that did not used to be blocked? There could be any number of factors that would negatively affect an elderly person’s ability to see, and—since he or she is in a state of cognitive impairment and cannot easily ascertain the source of the change—this can contribute to sundown syndrome episodes. Has the volume in the environment suddenly been turned up? Are there new noises that weren’t there in the past (drilling in the street or construction going on, for example)?

If environmental factors are stable, yet you notice that an elderly loved one is developing a trend of suffering more frequent or more severe episodes of sundown syndrome, you may want to have his or her hearing and vision checked. There may be preventive or remedial measures available to restore his or her hearing and vision to optimal levels, thereby reducing confusion and anxiety.

Conclusion

While there is no one source of sundown syndrome, by keeping a close eye on the diet and environment of an elderly loved one—as well as his or her ability to see and hear—you may be able to identify some triggers. Removing the triggers—or treating declining sight and hearing when possible—should help ensure a peaceful, quiet evening for your loved one.

By; Stephanie Clark

If Someone in my family has had Alzheimer’s, will I have it, too?

If someone in my family has had Alzheimer’s, will I have it, too?

Sharon’s story

middle-aged blond woman wearing glassesI forgot to pay the rent for 2 months and recently lost my glasses. Sometimes, I can’t come up with the right word when talking with others. I could tell my husband was starting to worry, and so was I.

I decided it was time to see my doctor. Some of my relatives have had Alzheimer’s disease. My father started having memory problems when he was in his 60s. I’m in my 60s now.

The doctor asked me about my health and my family’s health history. He said that many things, like depression or a bad reaction to medicine, can cause memory problems. He ordered some tests to help rule out Alzheimer’s disease.

Many people worry about developing Alzheimer’s disease, especially if a family member has had it.

Having a family history of the disease does not mean for sure that you’ll have it, too. But, it may mean you are more likely to develop it.

Late-onset Alzheimer’s

No one can yet predict if you will develop late-onset Alzheimer’s, even if it runs in your family. Late-onset Alzheimer’s disease has been linked to APOE ɛ4. But, having this gene form does not always mean a person will develop the disease.

Early-onset Alzheimer’s

Familial Alzheimer’s disease, or FAD—the most common type of early-onset Alzheimer’s—is inherited. If a parent has a gene for FAD, there is a 50/50 chance that a child will inherit the gene. If the gene is passed down, the child will usually—but not always—have FAD. Doctors and scientists don’t yet know if other types of early-onset Alzheimer’s can be passed down.

Publication Date: August 2016
Page Last Updated: September 27, 2016

From the US department of heath and human services

Assess Your Loved One

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Signs Your Loved One Needs Help

Families and children of seniors may have a difficult time determining if their parents need additional help. Elders may be reluctant to share their daily struggles with their children and/or families because they are embarrassed or feel they may be a burden. In other cases, seniors may not even realize they are struggling. If a parent or loved one is suffering from dementia or depression, they may be overlooking important business matters or fall prey to financial scams.

If you are concerned that a loved one may be having issues, but you know they are not ready to move into a care facility, you may wish to consider using the respected services of a Senior’s Choice member in your area.

Children of senior parents and who suspect they could use some additional help should keep a look out for the following signs:

The next time you are visiting with parents, observe the condition of their home. While casual clutter may be a sign of a perfectly happy home, dust and dirt may signal a bigger problem. Dusty areas may mean cleaning is a challenge. Are there other unclean areas of the home, like floors, stairways, and old spills?

These factors may indicate that your parents need help around the house.
Peek in the refrigerator and check the condition of the food. Has anything spoiled? Is the home lacking in groceries? A neglected refrigerator may indicate a variety of problems. Your senior parents may have a tough time cleaning it out, they may be having difficulty getting to the grocery store or carrying groceries inside, or loss of short-term memory may be causing these issues.
Check the mail. Unpaid bills and a buildup of junk mail may be a sign your senior parents are overwhelmed, or forgetting to take care of household administrative tasks. If your parents are suffering from dementia, it may mean they are forgetting to take care of important business. Caregivers can help organize and keep track of mail. If you are concerned about outsiders helping with personal finances, let the caregivers handle other tasks, allowing your parents to feel less overwhelmed. If someone else is handling grocery shopping and doctor’s appointments, your senior parents might remember to pay the electric bill.
Have a look under the sinks and in medicine cabinets. Ensuring your senior parents can read labels of household products and medications, and ensuring they are taking necessary medications is an important part of protecting their safety and keeping them healthy. If your senior parents are unable to handle health issues such as these, they probably need support on a daily basis.
Observe your parent’s appearance. Are they having a difficult time keeping up with personal hygiene? Do you often see them in the same outfit? This may mean doing laundry is a difficult task, or it may mean they are neglecting their personal appearance and hygiene. They may also be concerned about their safety while bathing or showering. Falling, or the fear of falling, often leads to loss of confidence, imposed isolation, and immobility. Speak to them about their concerns and determine the cause of the problem. This can help the two of you best solve the problem.
Speak with your parent’s neighbors and friends about their habits and daily routines. Find out if things seem to be in order or if they have noticed changes in schedules or long periods of time spent alone in their home. Seniors need companionship. If they are depressed, they may be spending more time at home, away from people.
If you suspect your senior parents may be suffering from dementia or memory loss, have a look at the bottom of their pots and pans. If the bottoms are burned, it may indicate that tasks like heating things on the stove are going unsupervised during bouts of dementia. This can be dangerous and you should take action as soon as possible to get your parent the help they need.
Have your senior parents missed doctor’s appointments recently? This may indicate they do not have appropriate transportation, they may not be willing to face impending health problems, or they may be suffering from memory loss and have forgotten the appointments. One of the most common ways a caregiver helps seniors is ensuring that they get to their doctor’s appointments.
Have you received phone calls from your senior parents at unusual hours? This may indicate that they are confused or lonely. It may be a way for them to tell you there may be a problem like depression, even if they are unwilling to say it outright. A visit from a caregiver can help them with confusion and provide companionship, as can participating in activities at a senior center or scheduling additional visits with family members.
Are your senior parents showing signs of depression? As people age, they may feel lonely and isolated. Spouses, family members, and friends may suffer health problems or drift away. These life changes remind seniors of their own mortality, which can lead to feelings of hopelessness and despair. Keeping your senior parents active can help ward off depression. Do not feel as if you have to handle this all on your own. A reputable In-Home Care agency offers the in-home support your parent needs.

http://www.caringconnectionsllc.com  850-354-5336

The information in the article is not intended to substitute for the medical expertise and advice of your healthcare provider. We encourage you to discuss any decisions about treatment or care with appropriate healthcare provider.

3 Concerns when hiring Home Care


caregiver_african_american3 Family Concerns When Hiring Home Car
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Every day across the United States, professional caregivers enter private homes of people who live alone and are unable to take care of themselves, whether they are recovering from illness, injury or require long-term assistance.
These are the people we trust to take care of our aging parents, spouses and loved ones when we can’t be there or when extra help is needed. It is natural to have questions and concerns prior to deciding to hire a professional.
1. Reliability
Families may feel some initial anxiety about hiring professional help to care for their loved ones, but ensuring trust and satisfaction upfront can help alleviate this stress. To do this, family members should ask certain questions during the interview process. Background checks and training are both necessary to ensure you and your loved one’s safety and security. Ask for references and be sure to check them.
In addition to background screenings, families should ensure that the potential caregiver is properly trained to deal with their loved one’s specific conditions. Any certification program should abide by the guidelines established by their state’s Department of Health.
Training typically covers a broad range of subjects, including personal care, vital signs, nutrition, sensitivity to other cultures and understanding professional boundaries.
2. Compatibility
In addition to hiring someone who is properly trained and certified, it’s essential to find someone who is compassionate and caring. Beyond this, there are two other essential components: compatibility and communication.
Some home care companies or agencies will provide you, as a prospective client, with a profile to fill out that outlines exactly what you and your loved one need. Then, a registered nurse should visit the client at their home to develop a customized plan of the services that will address his or her care needs. The agency should also take steps to ensure that their home health aides are carefully matched to fit each client’s unique personality and lifestyle. This process allows everyone to be on the same page and work together as a team to provide the most customized care plan possible.
Once a plan is in place, the communication does not stop there. You should establish and maintain a professional relationship that encourages open lines of communication throughout the course of care. A professional will expect you to establish appropriate boundaries and you will feel much better once you do. If your loved one engages in cultural behaviors or observes certain traditions, it’s important to communicate them early on. Discuss any questions, concerns or issues as soon as they come up.
3. Independence and privacy
The purpose of this care is to create an environment that is conducive to keeping the client safe and independent at home. While the care they provide is undoubtedly vital, the ultimate goal is to have your loved one stay in control of their own day-to-day routine.
Longtime home health aide Jennifer Paul emphasizes being a good listener. She is mindful that the people she cares for are not only physically challenged, but also can feel frustrated or stripped of their independence and privacy.
“When you go into someone’s home, you have to give them a little space,” she explains. “Don’t just take over. Listen, really listen, to what they want.”
If the plan of care says a person should get up at 6:00 a.m., for instance, but he or she really prefers to get up at 8:00 a.m. or 9:00 a.m., talk to the nurse about revisiting the plan of care. “If a patient really doesn’t like something, I try to understand what they’re saying and see if we can’t work accordingly,” says Jennifer.
Most home care professionals derive satisfaction and strength from a job well-done, which is often achieved early in the day.

Caring Connections Senior Care  850-354-5336

From aging care.com