Monthly Archives: January 2019
Many times, older adults find themselves living in houses that are too large for them to manage or needing to move in with family caregivers who can help them. In today’s world, that’s called “downsizing.” It means moving from a larger home to a smaller one. Of course, when the space your aging relative lives in gets smaller it means they will have less room for belongings. That can mean having to get rid of some things, which isn’t always easy. It’s hard enough for older adults to give up the home they love let alone some of their treasured possessions. All in all, it can be quite a hassle for caregivers involved in the process. Here are 4 tips to make downsizing a little easier.
#1: Make a Plan
Before you begin the process of downsizing, sit down with your aging relative and make a plan. Talk about the kinds of things they can and should keep. Remind them that their space will be limited, so they will have to make some difficult decisions. If you’re on a timeline, it can help to write a to-do list that keeps you on track. Write down all of the areas of the house and the order you plan to pack them in. Start with the least used rooms. Caregivers may need to assign dates to the process to ensure everything is completed on time.
#2: Separate Items
Go through everything in each room. Separate them into “keep,” “donate,” “sell,” and “trash” piles. Try to only touch everything once since it will make the process faster. Pack the “keep” pile in boxes to move immediately. Throw away everything in the trash pile. Then, package up the donate items and place them in one area of the house so that all donations can be taken away at once.
#3: Keep the Favorites
If your aging relative is a collector, they may be unable to take an entire collection with them. Suggest that they pick a few of their favorites and donate or sell the rest. Or, if a family member is interested in the collection, it can help to know that it has been passed to someone else who loves it.
#4: Digitize Photos
Photos and photo albums can take up a lot of space. However, you don’t really want to lose those old memories. Instead of moving boxes full of pictures and albums, consider converting all of them to digital form and discarding the hard copies.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Caregivers in Lubbock, TX, please contact the caring staff at Best In-Home Care (806) 412-0723.
Monthly Archives: January 2019
Planning respite care for your aging adult sounds more complicated than it really has to be. In all honesty, the portions of the planning that relate to what you need might be the most difficult part for you to estimate, especially the first few times you take time away.
How Much Time Do You Need?
If you know what you’re going to be doing during your respite time, you might want to make sure that you allot enough time for yourself. For situations that are more open-ended, you might find that you’re estimating this amount of time a little more. The best part about making respite time a regular occurrence is that you’ll get better about understanding how much time away you need.
Should This Be Something You Do More Often?
Is this a one-time situation or is this a plan for future respite care situations as well? If you’re new to taking respite time, you might feel more comfortable easing into this and spacing out your time away. As you get more relaxed about respite time, it might be easier to schedule more frequent opportunities away.
What Special Needs Does Your Senior Have?
Something else that you need to consider is the special needs that your elderly family member might have. If she needs help eating or toileting, then she might appreciate getting to know her home care providers a little better before you go away for longer periods of time. If her needs are a little less personal, such as offering stability as she walks, she might not need as long a period of introduction.
What Activities Might Your Senior Enjoy?
You know your elderly family member’s likes and dislikes, of course, but new respite care providers don’t. Try to brainstorm a few different activities that your senior might enjoy. Leaving these ideas can help to avoid any awkwardness as your senior adjusts to the fact that you’re not there with her. She’ll likely adjust very quickly, but it can still help to make some suggestions.
As other questions occur to you, make sure that you write them down. Make sure that you let home care providers know where to find emergency information, like your phone number, as well as anything that your elderly family member might need while you’re gone. Putting together an information packet specifically for respite can help you keep all that in one place.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Home Care in Shallowater TX, please contact the caring staff at Best In-Home Care (806) 412-0723.
Monthly Archives: January 2019
Whether there are medications your dad currently takes or his doctor wants to add a new one, you need to ask questions. It’s important to know everything you can about the medication for his safety and your peace of mind. Here are five questions you need to ask.
Why is He Taking It?
Find out why the doctor wants him to take the medication. If your dad has been down and the doctor prescribes an antidepressant, there may be other options he could try first. He might find that a daily walk and participation in a Yoga class improves his mood better than a prescription.
Are There More Affordable Generics?
According to the AARP, the cost of common prescription medications for seniors increased by almost 16 percent in 2015. Many seniors struggle to keep up with the price increases and opt to skip taking medications instead.
If your dad is struggling with his prescription costs, ask his doctor if there are rebates or generic medications that can save him money. If that doesn’t get the cost down enough, ask for help affording medications. It’s better to ask than have him stop taking them.
Does the Benefit Outweigh the Risk?
Some medications have frightening side effects. You’ve probably seen news reports on popular blood pressure medications getting recalled by the FDA. These medications have small amounts of carcinogens that may cause certain kinds of cancer.
You have to sit down and ask the doctor if the benefits are worth the risks. If the risk of illness or death is great, talk about other options. Ask what happens if he doesn’t take any medication and tries another option like diet and exercise instead.
What Time of Day is Best for Taking It?
Some medications have side effects like dizziness that put your dad at risk of a fall. For these medications, it’s recommended that seniors take them right before bed. Find out from his doctor if there is a time of day that’s ideal.
Are There Foods, Supplements, and Drinks He Should Avoid on This Medication?
If your dad is on a blood pressure medication, he may have been told not to drink grapefruit juice. With some medications, grapefruit increases the level of medication in the blood. If he likes licorice, he shouldn’t eat it when he takes digoxin for heart disease. Caffeine in chocolate, tea, and coffee may interact with some sleep medications. Those are just a few examples.
Your dad may have a hard time remembering to get refills or to take his medications. Hire senior care services to help him with medication reminders and errands. Caregivers can call to order refills and drive him to the pharmacy to pick them up. Call a senior care agency to hire caregivers for your dad.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Senior Care in Slaton TX, please contact the caring staff at Best In-Home Care (806) 412-0723.
Monthly Archives: January 2019
Many older adults take multiple prescription medicines every day. When they aren’t taken correctly, they may not be effective in treating medical conditions and they can even be dangerous. Family caregivers are invested in keeping their aging family members as healthy as possible and safe from prescription mishaps. Following these 6 prescription medication tips can help.
#1: Get a Medication Check Up
At least once a year take a list of the medications your aging relative is using to their doctor. Include on the list prescription drugs, over the counter medicines, and supplements on the list. Also, write down the instructions for taking the medicine and the dosages. Ask the doctor to review the list for any drug interactions, medicines that are no longer necessary, and any other issues. Don’t have time to make a list? Toss all the bottles in a bag and take them to the doctor for review.
#2: Ask Questions
Each time your older family member gets a new medicine, ask the doctor some questions. Find out:
• What the drug is for and what it is supposed to do.
• The correct pronunciation of the drug name (this can help if you have to tell a medical provider about the senior’s medications).
• How the drug should be taken.
• Whether the drug should be taken with or without food, and any other important instructions.
#3: Keep Track of Refills
Medications for chronic illnesses must be refilled regularly and you don’t want to run out. If you keep a calendar especially for your aging relative, write down when prescriptions need to be refilled. Or, set a reminder in your smartphone. Be sure to have the drug refilled at least a few days before it will run out. Also, be aware of how many refills are left before the senior needs to see the doctor again.
#4: Give the Pharmacist a Medication List
Many pharmacies maintain a list of medications for their customers. This can help to spot drug interactions when a new prescription is filled. When you compile the older adult’s medication list for their doctor, give a copy to the pharmacist, too.
#5: Ask Elder Care to Help with Reminders
One problem that many seniors have with their medications is remembering to take them. Post a copy of your aging relative’s medication schedule where it is easily accessible. Ask the older adult’s elder care provider to remind the senior when it is time for them to take medicine. Sometimes elderly people accidentally take too much medicine because they’ve forgotten they already took it. An elder care provider can also watch to make certain that does not happen.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Elder Care in Lubbock,TX, please contact the caring staff at Best In-Home Care (806) 412-0723.
Monthly Archives: January 2019
It is important to you that your parent has the best lifestyle possible as they age in place, and that means making sure they have access to all the care, support, and assistance they need on a regular basis. One way you can ensure this is by introducing home care into your routine. An in-home senior care services provider can be there for your senior on a customized schedule to ensure their needs are met in the ways that are right for them. One of the best parts about home care is that it is completely customizable, meaning the care provider only needs to be with your parent when they need them. Evaluating the ways a care provider can benefit your senior at different points in their day can help to illuminate how valuable this type of care can be. One time of the day when this can be particularly valuable is the evening as your parent is winding down. Dedicated care at this time of day can help your parent relax and get ready for a healthy, safe night’s sleep.
Some ways home care in the evening can help your senior wind down include:
- Preparing a healthy dinner for your parent. This can even include getting your senior into the kitchen with them to stimulate their mind and memory with cooking and sharing stories
- Helping your senior take a relaxing bath, which can include everything from just preparing the bathroom and the bath so your parent can bathe independently, to providing full support and assistance
- Getting them dressed in comfortable pajamas
- Helping them through their nighttime hygiene routine, including brushing their teeth or encouraging them to properly clean their dentures, brushing their hair, applying lotion, and readying them to relax for the night
- Spending time with them doing quiet, relaxing activities such as a soothing craft or reading
- Getting them into bed
- Providing support for a senior who may feel anxious as the evening approaches, such as one who suffers sundowners
Being a family caregiver can be challenging, but you never need to feel as though you are completely alone. Home care is available to provide a valuable source of support and assistance designed with your senior as an individual in mind. This means they are not just thinking about helping them with activities of daily living or giving medication reminders, though these are valuable services. An in-home senior care services provider can also help them to manage their mental and emotional health needs, seek out more independence and autonomy, and find ways to bring more meaning and fulfillment into their daily life.