How Can You Tell if Your Elderly Family Member Needs Home Care

Accepting the need for assistance is not easy for adults as they get older. So, how will you determine when your elderly parent needs home care? One thing is sure: your parents are not likely to be the ones who tell you.

Older adults have a desire to remain independent and be in control. Usually, a senior will hide any issues out of fear of being a burden or because they are embarrassed or ashamed. However, until a sudden decline in their overall health makes it obvious, they need assistance. Since adult children don’t come up with a care decision plan before the crisis takes place, the stress of an unexpected hospitalization complicates things even more.

One way to avoid this problematic scenario is to start regularly monitoring your aging parent’s mental and physical abilities. Make sure he knows this is not an accusation but instead a way to help him maintain his independence for as long as possible. It is not easy to see a loved one’s health decline, but you can help them avoid any medical crisis if you know the signs. To determine whether your parents need home care, keep an eye on the following essential signs:

Essential Signs that Your Elderly Family Member Needs Home Care

1. Difficulty Getting Around
As many experts agree, most people over the age of 70 need some help to go about their routine. However, your family member may not feel comfortable telling you that he needs assistance. Over time, vision and hearing loss may become severe enough to limit your loved one’s ability to move around the house without help. Your parents will also need some help if they begin having problems with balance or coordination.

2. Difficulty Taking Care of Themselves
While it is normal for older adults to deal with medical issues eventually, it is not normal for them to not take care of themselves altogether. It is one of the most obvious signs that your loved one needs help. When you notice that they are unable to take care of their hygiene or clean up after themselves, you have to intervene.

3. Physical Decline
As the years’ progress, most elderly adults will experience a gradual decrease in physical fitness and mobility. However, some older adults experience a sudden decline in health that is too rapid to be recognized by any family member. Once this happens, they can’t regain their full strength and mobility before they are forced to seek home care assistance.

4. Cluttered Home
In most cases, older adults take pride in the appearance of their homes. Over time, they will likely develop a tidy and clean appearance. However, this will start to change as they get older. In addition to the usual clutter created over time, it is essential to keep an eye out for signs that your elderly family member needs home care due to cluttered spaces.

5. Loss of Memory or Confusion
An alarming number of elderly adults suffer from some degree of memory loss or confusion. As a result, they may fail to remember important dates, events, and conversations, while some may become disoriented while trying to get ready for the day or do other routine tasks. These are warning signs that your elderly parent may have developed dementia.

6. Frequent Falls
As the year’s pass, seniors tend to have a greater chance of falling. As a result, they may need assistance getting up from a chair or moving around to get to the bathroom without damaging themselves. These falls occur gradually over time in most cases and do not require any immediate attention from you or your family. However, if you notice that your loved one is falling more frequently or becoming unstable while moving around the house, you should consider calling for a senior home care service.

7. Reduced Appetite and Sudden Weight Loss or No Gain in Weight
A sudden and unexplained loss of appetite or inability to gain weight is a possible sign that your loved one needs home care. Such problems may be linked to some form of pain or discomfort that he is unable to self-diagnose. When this happens, it is time for you to step in and intervene.

8. Feelings of Worthlessness and Hopelessness
If you notice that your elderly parent is experiencing a change in their attitude, it might signify that they feel worthless or hopeless about something. You can tell if your loved one is unhappy with their life when he starts complaining about things more often than usual and becomes more irritable than normal. It may help to write down thoughts about these feelings or speak to a counselor for some guidance.

9. Shift in Personality
It is normal for older adults to become more irritable as they age. It could be due to any number of reasons, including pain or medication side effects. However, if your elderly loved one changes significantly in personality, it may be a sign that dementia has set in. For example, most people who experience memory issues will occasionally forget to pick up their medication or lose important documents. But if your loved one forgets things regularly, you must consider consulting a physician.

Hiring Home Care for Elderly Family Member
Once you notice any signs that your loved one may need care, the best way to help them maintain their independence is to hire senior home care services. These agencies offer caregivers who are trained to assist the elderly with various activities. They can provide assistance with daily living, including bathing or getting dressed, as well as other activities depending on the needs of your loved one.

The ideal way to start your search is to ask yourself, “Are there any great senior care services near me that can address my parent’s needs?” To ensure that the agency will provide the most effective service, look for reviews and ratings online. Ask friends and relatives if they have had similar experiences with specific agencies and services. You can also ask family members and friends if they know of individuals who would be good candidates for home care.

All in all, these are some of the most common signs that you may need to hire senior home care services for your family member. If you notice any of these indicators, it is never too late to consider hiring assistance.

Author Bio
I’m Andrea Gibbs, Born, raised, and still living in New York. I’m a work-at-home mom with a background in business development, strategy, and social media marketing. I’m a blog contributor at Serenity Senior Care to motivate other parents about how they can enhance their elderly loved ones quality of life.

 

By |2021-09-11T18:16:56-05:00September 11th, 2021|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on How Can You Tell if Your Elderly Family Member Needs Home Care

Guest Blog: Tips For Preventing Falls Among The Elderly

Falls among seniors are more common than you think.

According to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 36 million older adults suffer a fall each year.

Our muscles lose strength, and our balance and coordination decline as we get older. As our senior loved ones are already at a certain age, they are now more prone to falls, and it could only get worse as they get on in years.

However, we can take steps to keep our seniors from suffering falls. Here are some tips on how to prevent falls among the elderly.

Declutter

Make sure your parent’s or grandparent’s space is clutter-free. You can’t have random stuff lying all over the place, becoming a tripping hazard for seniors. The floors that your elderly loved one walks on should always be clear, with nothing to step, slip, and trip on.

Put Up Grab Bars & Handrails In Strategic Spots

Seniors can use additional support when walking around the house. So, it would be great if the hallways, bathrooms, and stairways are fitted with handrails and grab bars.

Add More Lights

Our seniors typically have poor eyesight, which can only get worse under poor lighting conditions. By installing additional lights (and brighter ones at that), seniors will have a better chance of seeing and avoiding tripping and slipping hazards as they go about the house.

Use Only Non-Slip Mats & Rugs

All the mats and rugs in the house should be the non-slip type or secured to the floor.

Get Them To Exercise Regularly

Regular exercise is crucial to keeping the muscles, bones, and sense of balance of our seniors strong. Walking, lifting light weights, climbing stairs, or doing something as simple as standing on one leg for a minute or two can already help them stay as fit as possible. The fitter they are, the lower their risk of suffering a fall.

Tell Them To Be More Careful

Sometimes, seniors fall because they try to move too fast when walking across the room or getting out of bed. Tell them they need to be more careful when doing so and always move at a more comfortable pace.

Falls don’t have to be synonymous with getting older. By taking the necessary precautions, our seniors stand a better chance of avoiding them.

 

About the Author

 Melissa Andrews is the Content Marketing Strategist for Paradise Living Centers, an assisted living center for seniors with locations in Paradise Valley and Phoenix, Arizona. In her spare time, she enjoys cooking and going on hiking trips with her siblings and cousins.

 

 

By |2021-08-27T10:59:11-05:00September 9th, 2021|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on Guest Blog: Tips For Preventing Falls Among The Elderly

Guest Blog: How Technology is Changing Elderly Care

Applying new technologies to in home senior care has significantly contributed to the quality of life by enhancing their daily living needs such as transportation, communication, health, and social participation. Telemedicine, voice command technologies, blood pressure cuffs, remote glucose monitors are some of the few technologies that have impacted elderly care. This article discusses various ways in which technology is changing elderly care.

Technologies are filling the caregiver gap

There is a massive growth of the elderly population which has increased the demand for caregivers. According to research by AARP, there will be about 50 million caregivers in the US by 2020, 45 million of them being unpaid family members. At the same time, there will be 120 million people in need of a caregiver. Many companies have therefore used their knowledge to create technologies that have smoothen caregiver’s work. These technologies have been designed to solve or ease various elderly needs, such as keeping track of their daily activities, medication, exercise programs, and monitoring meals.

Devices prevent wandering

Seniors with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease always need to escape a situation because they are confused or disoriented. These diseases common in the elderly erase their memory-making familiar places to be unfamiliar. These cognitive impairments make the elderly lose direction and could apt walk to dangerous places. In an aged care facility, to be precise, the seniors wander because of inactivity or boredom. Wandering gives caregivers and relatives an alarm for fear that the senior will get hurt or get lost. To address this problem, several devices have been developed, and they include bed and door alarms.

Some pendants provide GPS for the elderly, especially those under medication and prone to getting lost. Some of these apps with GPS location include angel sense, GPS Smart sole, MedicAlert safely home, and others are still under development by HCI (Human-Computer Interaction) experts.

Cameras that protect the elderly from abuse

Due to other duties you need to attend to, it is impossible to stay around nursing the aged. Small cameras are one of the most significant ways to ensure that the older person is adequately cared for. You will have to place cameras in indiscreet locations. This camera will take footage of daily activities, and thus you will be able to know that the caregiver you hired or some family members are not mistreating your elderly loved ones.

Remote technology offers 24/7 protection

Caregiving from a distance has always had innumerable challenges. Senior safety tech industries have made life easy for caregivers by developing caregiver alert systems and elderly monitoring systems. There are different options to ensure that the elderly is safe and in good health while you are away. Monitoring devices used include:

  • Sensors that turn off stoves if they are left for too long.
  • Sensors to inform you if the elderly left the water running.
  • Locked medication dispensers equipped with alarms and timers for missed doses.
  • Voice-activated virtual assistants.
  • Intelligent sensors that learn the elderly routine.

Smartphones to promote self-care

Smartphones are handy for seniors. It helps them stay connected with their grandchildren by video chatting, controlling other intelligent devices, monitoring health through pastern, and lots of features that improve the quality of life for the elderly.

Other benefits of smartphones to the seniors include:

  • Making emergency calls.
  • Using GPS to navigate when driving or walking.
  • Accessing the internet.
  • Looking at date and time.

The top features of a senior smartphone include:

  • Simple menus.
  • Larger buttons and screens.
  • Emergency button.
  • Fitness and health tracking tools.

Smartphones can serve the purpose of entertainment to seniors. Seniors can now break boredom through games, audiobooks, podcasts, and social media. This is mainly for those who are living alone. They also come pre-installed with a virtual assistant that responds to voice commands and questions.

In addition to the above technologies, the best way to avoid the elderly being mistreated is to hire a caregiver whose background check has been thoroughly conducted. Some online platforms specialize in this area, for instance, Caregiver, engaging in home-care services for the seniors. They provide the simplest and most effective way to find the right caregiver for your loved ones. In short, Caregiver empowers you to find the best in-home senior care.

Conclusion

Technology advancements have influenced how family caregivers and health care providers approach eldercare. It has bridged the caregiver gap and allowed seniors to age gracefully. These technologies have provided a mechanism for caregivers to assess the health of the elderly and provide appropriate medication.

By |2021-07-09T13:46:54-05:00July 9th, 2021|News Posts|Comments Off on Guest Blog: How Technology is Changing Elderly Care

Guest Blog: Dental Care Tips for the Elderly

The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research revealed in a survey conducted from 1999 to 2004 that periodontal disease (gum disease) is prevalent among seniors aged 65 and older.

Seniors who are smokers are at a higher risk of developing severe gum problems. The research is proof that proper dental care is vital at any age, but especially during the senior years when oral health is most sensitive.

To prevent periodontal disease and other problems that might require emergency dental care, you or your senior family member should follow certain oral health practices.

 Tips for Elderly Dental Care

 Brush your teeth and floss regularly

It is recommended that you brush your teeth with fluoride toothpaste two times a day. Be sure to do the brushing for at least two minutes, and be gentle. If you brush too hard, you might hurt your gums.

Flossing at least once a day is also an important dental care practice. Proper use of dental floss will help remove hard-to-reach food particles wedged between the teeth’ spaces.

Take in Calcium is an essential nutrient that contributes to bone and teeth health. A person who does not have enough calcium can develop osteoporosis, leading to teeth loss when the jaw bone is affected. It is vital, therefore, for seniors to include calcium-rich food in their diet.

According to the American Dental Association, seniors need an average calcium intake of 1,000 milligrams per day. You can get significant amounts of this nutrient from dairy products such as milk, yogurt, cheese, and vegetables like kale, spinach, and broccoli.

Besides calcium, it would help if you also had enough vitamin D in your diet as it is essential for the proper absorption of calcium-rich food.

 Minimize sugar intake

Stay away from sweets that are rich in starch or starchy ingredients as this will destroy your teeth. If you eat or drink anything sweet, be sure to brush your teeth and floss afterward.

 Stop smoking

As mentioned earlier, seniors who smoke are more prone to periodontal disease than non-smokers. Quitting may be challenging, but it’s well worth it because staying away from all forms of tobacco will protect you from gum disease and other dental problems.

Besides following the tips above, it would be best to visit your dentist every six months.

About the Author

Dr. Gary Salwin leads the Glendale Dental Group, Arizona. He and his team treat dental emergencies and perform a whole range of dental services. He has been practicing dentistry for more than 36 years.

 

 

By |2021-06-17T09:30:46-05:00June 7th, 2021|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on Guest Blog: Dental Care Tips for the Elderly

Guest Blog: How to Make a Difference in the Lives of Seniors in Your Community

From the loneliness and isolation that many seniors face to the physical impairments or disabilities that may limit their ability to perform some daily tasks on their own, many aging adults could benefit from the assistance of other members in their community. If you’re interested in helping seniors living in your neighborhood, the following resources will familiarize you with the different challenges that many aging adults face, as well as some of the things you can do to help out.

The Challenges of Growing Older

There is a saying that growing older is not for sissies, and in a sense that is very true. It stems, of course, from the fact that the strength and vibrance of our bodies and minds can wane over the years. Being aware of the challenges older people face can help you recognize opportunities and define your responses to them.

  • Explore this comprehensive guide to issues facing seniors
  • Seniors who are growing older without partners or family close by face unique struggles
  • Growing older means coming to grips with one’s mortality; be sensitive to the spiritual needs seniors experience
  • Among their challenges, basic needs like performing household tasks and meal preparation can be difficult for seniors
  • Falling is a major health concern for seniors, even in their own homes

What You Can Do to Help

Sometimes finding opportunities isn’t the hardest part of assisting seniors; sometimes it’s finding practical solutions. Seniors face problems big and small that you can solve, though. Thankfully, most of those solutions are surprisingly straightforward, and really just require a little bit of thinking outside the box. Explore these simple strategies for some of the concerns you might realize are part of an older adult’s life.

  • Isolation is a common health issue for seniors but there are practical solutions
  • Being homebound is an issue for many seniors
  • Teaching technology to seniors is a great way to connect them with others and help them feel engaged, even if they are homebound
  • An Echo Dot is an affordable device for seniors that allows them to perform a variety of practical tasks
  • Most seniors can get comfortable with smart speakers like Alexa pretty quickly with a few pointers, and they reap many benefits
  • Taking quick, easy and healthy meals to seniors helps to ensure they receive proper nutrition
  • Another idea is to set up a senior with grocery delivery for fresh meals
  • Senior Care Central offers individualized care solutions for seniors

If your family is interested in giving back to seniors in your community, this guide will help you to get started. By sharing your time, helping a senior neighbor with housework, and cooking meals for aging adults in your community, you’ll be making a difference in the lives of local seniors.

By |2021-05-26T14:04:10-05:00May 26th, 2021|News Posts|Comments Off on Guest Blog: How to Make a Difference in the Lives of Seniors in Your Community