Allison’s mom needed help, everyone could see that. When the family talked to her about getting one of the professional home care agencies to come in she refused. She insisted on hiring a young man whom she had befriended at her church. At first it seemed to be an ideal match. But the lack of a proper background checks soon came back to haunt them. Late one night the police knocked on the door to inform the family that the young caregiver had been in a serious accident with multiple injuries and arrested for felony drunk driving.
Recently while I was working with one of our new clients, I noticed that the family was getting quite confused. Max was just coming home from a major surgery and had Home Health ordered by his
surgeon. It was explained that they would handle all the wound care, medication management, and also check his vitals a few times a week. The case manager also mentioned that Physical Therapy would be coming by twice a week as well.
There is no way to sugar coat it: Senior in home care is expensive. Some people are fortunate enough to be able to afford it paying privately out of pocket; others may have long term care insurance or Veteran’s benefits. But for most of us it’s a struggle to be able to afford to bring in the kind of licensed, qualified care that is need to properly care for an aging adult. However, with a little help from your accountant and family physician, you may be able to take deductions from your taxes for the expenses for home care you're spending on your loved one.
As a nurse and a daughter, I strive to give my mom the right kind of nutrition she needs. But recently I noticed my mom wasn’t finishing her meals. In fact, there were times when the caregiver or I would put a meal in front of her and she wouldn’t even touch it. She would make silly excuses, leave the table, and putter off, busying herself with some irrelevant task. When I’d ask her about it, she’d say she just wasn’t hungry, and that food just didn’t appeal to her anymore. Elderly Nutrition can be quite a challenge. Just figuring out why they are not eating right, and then trying to adjust to their changing needs can be quite a challenge.
My Grandma sadly suffered from Alzheimer’s for more than 20 years. During her final years, her memory and motor skills suffered terribly. We got in the habit, as most people do, of sitting in front of the television and wasting the day away. We had no idea of the importance of activities for seniors with Alzheimer’s. The more she did nothing, the more I felt her slipping away.
Mom is no longer able to cook her meals and she needs help getting dressed every day. My friend told me she may have to go to a nursing home! I can't bear the thought of that! Do I have options?
This is a very common scenario. When elders begin requiring assistance, many well meaning friends or family members may recommend a nursing home. The truth is there are several levels of care to be considered based on your loved one's needs. Let's explore those options.
Senior Diabetes is a significant health risk. As we get older, our risk for type 2 diabetes increases. Among those older than 65, approximately 24 percent of men and 18 percent of women are living with diabetes. In the United States, about 1 out of every 4 people over the age of 60 have diabetes.
In a nutshell, type 2 diabetes is a condition characterized by high blood glucose levels that are caused by either a lack of insulin or the body’s inability to use insulin efficiently.
Ralph stops by to visit his dad on a pretty regular basis, about twice a month or so. He’s concerned since mom past away a couple of years ago, that his dad might need more help at home. He noticed the house isn’t quite as neat as it used to be, but he dismissed it as just a bachelor’s tendency to let things go a little without a woman in the house. But yet, dad seemed to be getting a little more lethargic as of late; sleeping in more, complaining about just not feeling to well. He even had a bad fall or two, but when Ralph tried to inquire more about it his dad dismissed it as “nothing”.
The Signs of COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease)
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease otherwise known as COPD, is estimated to affect over 12 million American’s today. Another 12 million likely have the condition but are unaware of it according to the ACF (American COPD Foundation).
The problem lies with the delay of recognizing the development of COPD symptoms and the speed of starting treatments to manage the condition. Additionally, the signs & symptoms are very similar to those of other conditions, and when first experienced are ignored or attributed to a less serious cause. A quality, nursing supervised, in home caregiver agency can recognize symptoms early and take steps to more effectively manage the illness.
However, signs and symptoms of COPD usually do not appear until there has been significant damage to the patient’s respiratory tract itself.
You stopped by to visit mom recently and suspected that something wasn't right. She’s been living alone for a while now. Dad died a few years ago but she seemed to bounce back from that pretty well. You stop in to visit from time to time, just to help out when, but she seems pretty independent most of the time. But lately something is different. You just can't get mom to eat right. You've noticed that breakfast is still on the table and it’s 4 in the afternoon. Her water glass is still full, and she’s still in her robe. She’s crabby, and complaining about things in a random way, not really making a lot of sense. These are all common signs of a loss of thirst and appetite that is common among many seniors.