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Are Your Loved Ones Victims of Senior Bullying?

Senior BullyingNowadays, everyone is talking about bullying and how to stop it. When we were children, bullies were everywhere and seemed to get away with everything; but we’re a zero-tolerance society now when it comes to bullying. However perhaps there’s some other, less apparent sort of bullying still occurring – that of trying to play the parent to our aging parents, thus overstepping some unwritten boundaries; in some cases, to the point of senior bullying. After all, even if our parents’ choices are different than ours, their choices should still be respected as much as is possible, with safety in mind.

Sometimes it can be hard to know where the line in the sand is between being a helpful care provider for parents and taking over for them in areas they can safely manage on their own. And added into the mix are often unresolved issues from childhood that can resurface – feelings of resentment and bitterness that may find their way into an adult’s caretaking decisions.

To illustrate, there are various areas of contention that often arise between senior parents and their grown children:

  • Medical related decision making
  • Planning for end of life
  • Recommended safety modifications
  • Knowing when to stop driving
  • Managing finances

These tips can help diffuse sticky decision-making situations more respectfully and effectively:

  • Try negotiating a safer alternative for a worry like driving, such as driving only in the daylight and only on short, local trips.
  • Start with small suggestions that may be more tolerable to seniors, such as adding no-slip strips to the bathtub, moving cords away from walkways or taping down rugs.
  • Try not to compromise safety, while also keeping a senior’s wishes in mind. Ask for the senior’s input without speaking down to him or her, and you’re more likely to work together for a successful outcome.
  • Put yourself in the older adult’s shoes. Consider what it would be like to be in a similar situation and how you would want to be treated if the tables were turned.
  • However, if there are safety or health concerns, do not hesitate to contact the senior’s physician or a social worker.

And keep in mind that typically, serious discussions such as these are often better received in the presence of a trusted healthcare professional or religious clergy member or through an objective third party. Want more tips to help make tough discussions with older adults go more smoothly, and avoid the possibility of senior bullying? Contact Endeavor Home Care’s Scottsdale home care experts at 480-535-6800 for trusted, professional assistance in keeping your older loved ones safe, while allowing them to remain as independent as possible where they’re most comfortable – at home.

When You Address Senior Citizens, Is It OK to Use Endearing Terms?

Senior CitizensSweetie, honey, dear – terms of endearment such as these may be appreciated when uttered by our spouse or when directed to our very young children, but how do senior citizens react to them? In a word, many are downright offended. And while health care professionals, restaurant staff, hair stylists and others may have the very best of intentions when attaching these labels to older adults, the underlying message is one of helplessness, frailty, and inferiority.

And just as irritating, or perhaps even more so, is speaking over senior citizens to address their family members instead, as if the seniors are unable to communicate competently.

There’s also a tendency – and again, it’s usually well meaning – to step in and take over tasks for the elderly, without realizing they are often more than capable of doing things for themselves. Seeing an older person maneuvering with a cane or walker, for example, often results in someone kindly offering assistance. However, according to Judy Jellison Graves, a cancer and polio survivor, “It’s annoying when people feel like I need help with something I have no problem doing myself.”

Coined “elderspeak” or “ageism ”, this type of behavior is even considered a form of bullying by Dr. Vicki Rosebrook, Executive Director of the Macklin Intergenerational Institute. “It’s talking down to them. We do it to children so well. And it’s natural for the sandwich generation, since they address children that way.”

Improving our view of the elderly is a national need, starting with the impressions we impart to the next generation. A recent study points to a highly negative reaction to growing older by children from preschool through grade school, who concluded that becoming elderly would be “awful.”

The lesson to be learned for all of us who interact with senior citizens? Replace coddling and stereotypes with simple, genuine respect. Endeavor Home Care is taking strides each day towards this end, by providing respectful senior care to enhance independence and quality of life, with a focus on always maintaining their dignity and individuality.

Our services always begin with the creation of a personalized care plan, taking into consideration each person’s needs, desires and interests, and that plan is modified ongoing as needs change. Contact us at (480) 535-6800 if you’d like to explore a partnership with us to help your senior loved one in Arizona.

Home health care: not synonymous to home care

home care

Home care is provided by non-medical caregivers, who are screened and employed by senior care facilities who assist with activities of daily living.

The phrases “home care” and “home health care” are sometimes used interchangeably, but recently, with an increasing emphasis on geriatric care, there seems to be an emerging need to distinguish one from the other.”Home health care is a wide range of health care services that can be given in your home for an illness or injury” as defined by Medicare, which covers most of its services.

While in both cases, care is provided to your loved one in the comfort of his or her home, the type of care and the provider may be different. Home care is provided by non-medical caregivers, who are screened and employed by senior care facilities such as Endeavor Senior Care and who assist with activities of daily living (ADLs) such as preparing meals, cleaning the house, doing groceries, taking medications, etc. Home health care, on the other hand, is provided by licensed healthcare workers such as nurses, occupational therapists and medical social workers. These professionals provide in-home medical care, which is “just as effective as care you get in a hospital or skilled nursing facility (SNF)” according to Medicare.

A medical doctor will decide if home health care is the right option. After prescribing it, he or she may either choose to refer you to a home health agency available in your area or may allow you to contact one that will best meet your loved one’s needs. Either way, the home health staff will constantly be reporting back to the doctor about your loved one’s care and progress.

There may be times when both home care and home health care services are required. For example, your loved one may be in need of both personal and medical assistance. In that case, what do you do? Fortunately, Endeavor Senior Care has a registered nurse on hand and many caretakers in the Phoenix and Tuscon area. For more information on how these services differ from each other and how we can assist your loved one, please contact us at (480) 535-6800.

Home Care for Hip Fracture Patients

home care

Skilled therapists are trained to know what your loved one needs most, from exercises and stretches to encouragement and education.

A recent study shows there are at least 258,000 hip fractures among adults aged 65 and older that lead to hospitalization each year. A more disturbing statistic is one out of five people who suffer a hip fracture die within the first year following the fall. Treatment for a fractured hip includes surgery, a hospital stay, and more often than not a stay in a nursing home.

Life following surgery is a challenge on many levels. Recovery is a slow and painful process. Daily activities easily completed before the injury are now struggles. Family will need to be near to offer assistance with walking, dressing and bathing.

Help is a phone call or click-of-the-mouse away. Home care provided by the professionals from Endeavor Senior Care can make a difference when a patient goes home from the hospital and must begin physical therapy in order to learn to walk properly and be able to complete daily activities.

Family members need no longer stress over knowing what exercises to do, how often they need to be done, and when. The emotional ups and downs of caring for a loved one after major surgery are many; personal connections make it difficult to insist on the hard things being completed.

Skilled therapists are trained to know what the patient needs most. From exercises and stretches to encouragement and education, family members can be confident in the care received. Patients will receive the help needed to regain balance, motor skills, and mobility. Occupational therapists are there to help a patient accomplish those daily tasks such as taking care of personal hygiene and dressing themselves.

Remember, you don’t have to attempt to do this alone. If you have a loved one who has suffered a fall, contact us. Let us help. We are the Home Health resource you can trust.

The Elderly and the Internet: Applying Mom’s Wisdom To In Home Care

in home care

Websites like Facebook and services like Twitter help give seniors that social interaction where they might otherwise feel alone and isolated.

Seniors who can’t get around like they used to may turn to the internet for their social activities. Websites like Facebook and services like Twitter help give seniors that social interaction where they might otherwise feel alone and isolated. This usually leads to a lot of time at the keyboard. To help avoid repetitive stress syndrome, remember what your mother told you growing up, and apply it to your in home care plan.

“Sit up straight!”

Mom was definitely right about this one. Sitting up straight, not slouching, can be very difficult if you’re at your computer for long periods of time. Muscles want to relax, not remain in a rigidly upright position. As they relax, however, they start to put strain on tendons as your whole frame relaxes. This, in turn, leads to inflammation. If you notice Mom or Dad hunching over at the keyboard, try to find a way to make it easier for them to sit upright. Sometimes a wireless keyboard will do the trick as it allows the user to recline instead of having to lean forward to meet the desk.

“Don’t sit so close to the TV!”

While sitting too close to the monitor can lead to eye trouble, having the computer and peripheral equipment properly placed can help reduce over-stressing muscles and tendons. Laptops are particularly problematic as they are often placed on the lap. This makes a user’s head tip down so they can see the screen and keyboard. This puts unnecessary strain at the neck and shoulders. If they’re resting their arms on the arms of the chair, their elbows will also feel it. Be sure to place peripherals where they can be comfortably reached while maintaining a healthy posture. Use speech recognition software or other adaptive technology to help.

“You’ve been sitting there too long! Go outside and play!”

Taking a break from repetitive tasks is important. It keeps them from being, well, repetitive. If a person has limited movement, they can still take a break by doing anything that doesn’t put them back in front of the monitor. For example, they can get a snack and eat it someplace else. If they eat it in front of the computer, they’re probably going to be too tempted to keep doing what they had been doing.

If they can’t easily get way from the computer, introduce them to other activities that don’t use the same action. For example, if they’ve been doing a lot of “point-and-click”, suggest they open an eBook or go to a heavily text-based website and read. (Wikipedia has a “random article button”. While user-generated content may have accuracy issues, it’s at least entertaining if not educational!)

“Clean up your room! It looks like a disaster!”

Keeping the computer area free of clutter will give them room to stretch and to move around. Being encased in stuff can make a person inadvertently start to hunch down and keep them from moving easily. This can keep a person from taking much-deserved breaks.

“Relax, it’s not the end of the world!”

Even if the computer area is well-organized and free of clutter, they take regular breaks, and get away from the screen once in a while, they can still have problems with Repetitive Stress Syndrome. Why? Repetitive stress in day-to-day life can keep a person tense and wound up. This steady pressure on your muscles will cause damage to your muscles and tendons as well as your state of mind.

Learning how to prioritize concerns and how to cope with situations that can’t be controlled is paramount to good health. According to Statistic Brain, more than 3 quarters of the US population has regular stress, with more than half suffering mentally and/or physically from it. By learning how to cope with stress, whether through a therapist or simple relaxation techniques, they’ll not only better avoid repetitive stress syndrome, but may also discover a healthier lifestyle!

RSS’s Other Names

Repetitive Stress Syndrome goes by many names: bursitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, Dupuytren’s contracture, epicondylitis, ganglion, rotator cuff syndrome, tendonitis (or tendinitis), tenosynovitis, trigger finger, or writer’s cramp. Whichever form you have, it’s not pleasant at all. It’s very uncomfortable and can be very damaging if left untreated.

Mom was right

She was either your best friend, or she was a creature from another planet. Whether she gave you these tips as gentle nudges or as thundering commands from on high, the fact is that these simple things can help reduce anyone’s chances for developing Repetitive Stress Syndrome, especially seniors. If they have done all of these things and continue to have problems with pain, tingling, numbing, or weakness, they should see a doctor. They might be able to get away with anti-inflammatory medication or a heat pack. But if it’s a more developed stage of Repetitive Stress Syndrome, the doctor will know what is needed to treat it.

For more help and resources in taking care of your elderly loved ones at home, contact us.

And if you hear your mom saying “I told you so!”, just admit she was right on this one!

Are Home Care Services Right For Your Loved One? Consider the Following Questions.

As your elderly loved one needs increasingly more assistance with activities of daily living (ADLs), you’ll likely begin considering which available eldercare options are right for your family. Many elderly people are resistant to change and fear the loss of independence they associate with long-term care facilities. Home care services are an excellent alternative for these individuals. To determine if home care is right for your loved one, consider the following questions:

home care services

If your loved one needs help with chores, and basic medical care, home care may be a good option.

How much care is needed? For those who require around-the-clock care, a long-term care facility is likely a better option than home care. However, if your loved one needs assistance with some activities of daily living, help with chores, and basic medical care, home care is a good alternative.

Where does your loved one prefer to live? This might seem an obvious question to consider, but it’s often overlooked. While most elderly people prefer the familiarity of their own homes, some might desire the companionship of community life in an assisted living or supportive living facility. For those who wish to remain at home and don’t require constant access to care, home care is an excellent option.

Are you feeling stressed out by the amount of care you’re providing to your loved one? If you’re feeling overwhelmed by your caregiving duties, home care services can help alleviate some of your stress. By having someone else help with caregiving responsibilities, you can focus on spending quality time with your loved one.

Does your loved one forget to pay bills or take medications? If your loved one forgets to take medication, is late to pay bills, or neglects personal hygiene, a home caregiver can help ensure that these ADLs and other responsibilities are takencare of in a timely manner.

Is your loved one isolated socially? As getting out of the house becomes more challenging for elderly people, feeling isolated from the outside world is often the result. Home care provides the opportunity for your loved one to have regular companionship and social interaction.

These are just a few of the questions to consider when deciding if home care is right for your elderly loved one. For more information regarding home care services, please contact us anytime.

Alzheimer’s Care can Help Patients Be Productive and Happy.

A diagnosis of Alzheimer’s Disease is terrifying. Even at the early-onset stage it delivers images of a loved one, or maybe of you, sitting unresponsively in a nursing home activity room. Alzheimer’s, however, is a progressive disease, and may take years to advance. As a matter of fact, some early-onset Alzheimer’s patients continue to work. Employers, under the Americans with Disabilities Act, make accommodations for employees with the disease, just as they would for those with other impairments.

alzheimer's careSome of the accommodations are the same ones used at home for individuals in the early stages of the disease. Employers provide a voice-activated recorder to give the employee verbal instructions, make checklists of tasks and reduce the peripheral jobs to concentrate on primary functions. With accommodations at work and some in-home Alzheimer’s care assistance from a senior care service many people diagnosed with Alzheimer’s live productive and happy lives for years. The in-home care can be adjusted as the patient needs more assistance. That continuity is a source of comfort and assurance as the disease progresses.

In addition to workplace accommodations, many patients find that they remember more and function better with memory training. This is another service a senior care organization can provide. The caregivers can become trusted friends that add to the security and self reliance of Alzheimer’s patients, especially when they are able to offer the added resource of prayer and faith.

A diagnosis of Alzheimer’s is frightening and life-changing, but with assistance, early-onset patients can still be productive and vital. That’s where we come in. If you have questions about how we can help you or a loved one cope with a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s, contact us.

Senior Care at Home: Establishing a Safe Environment

senior care at homeMany seniors desire the ability to live at home for as long as possible. Often they would like to live in the same home they have lived in for years and possibly even raised a family in. Providing senior care at home is achievable. One of the first steps is making sure the home environment is still safe as the needs of the senior changes over time.

Bedrooms and bathrooms tend to be the most unsafe areas of the home for seniors with falls being the most common home accidents for older adults. Conducting an annual safety check is important to help prevent falls and allow seniors to remain at home. Here are some suggestions for things to evaluate during a safety check.

Bedroom

Look for throw rugs or torn carpet which can create a tripping hazard. Remove or attach to the floor with double-sided tape, glue or carpet staples to minimize the hazard.

Verify access to a telephone is available for night time emergencies. Consider installing a cordless phone, cell phone or emergency alert system.

Verify bed height is appropriate. It is too low if the knees are above the hips when sitting on the bed and is too high if the legs do not touch the floor when sitting. Add risers to raise the height. Remove the bed frame to lower the height.

If electrical cords present a tripping hazard because they run along the walking path use extension cords to run them behind furniture and rearrange furniture as needed.

Bathroom

Add grab bars near the shower and toilet to prevent falls.

If the bottom of the tub is slippery use a rubber mat or adhesives on the bottom of the tub to reduce the risk of a fall.

Check that the tub and toilet are at the correct height. If the toilet is too low add a raised toilet seat.

Consider using a medication organizer for pills and setting it on the countertop so it can be easily reached.

General

Do all stairwells have sturdy handrails? Ideally handrails should be located on both sides of every set of stairs. Consider having them installed or replaced if they are not present or not sturdy.

Is emergency contact information easily accessible by the senior if needed? Consider posting this information in multiple locations throughout the home.

Check for working smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors on all levels of the home.

If taking care of oneself has become a challenge for a senior you love, it is worthwhile to look into in home care options. Advantages of in home care include:

Hygiene assistance
Companionship
Medication reminders
Light housekeeping
Meal planning and cooking
Complete home safety evaluation performed by an occupational therapist
Physical therapy exercises
Peace of mind for you and your loved one
And more

Having help at home can reduce the risk of accidents or injuries and extend the length of time a senior is able to continue to reside in their own home. For more information about at home care contact us. Endeavor Home Care provides quality care service in Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tuscon, Mesa, Sun City and other Arizona communities.

Elder Care in Mesa, AZ: When Can Your Parents No Longer Make Their Own Decisions?

One of the most serious considerations in elder care is competence. It is a delicate topic to consider whether your aging loved ones are truly mentally competent to continue making their own decisions, or whether you need to step in and become legally responsible for making decisions regarding their financial situation and health care. As with many other elderly health care considerations, you may find that your aging loved one is extremely resistant to discussing the topic of competence, and may even become defensive and angry should you bring up any concerns that you may have. Even if your aging loved one is not offended by your discussion of his competence, you may find that your siblings or other people in your family feel that you are making a rash or even selfish decision. If you’ve been providing ongoing elder care for your aging loved one, however, it is your responsibility to stand up for the health and well-being of this senior by recognizing when his mental faculties have reached a point at which they are no longer sharp enough to make beneficial decisions, and take the steps to protect him through your legal guardianship.

If you’ve been pondering the competence of your aging loved one in the course of your elder care, there are certain warning signs that you may wish to look out for.

These include:

  • Your aging loved one has not changed his clothes in a few days, or has put on dirty clothes
  • The clothing that your aging loved one is wearing is disheveled or stained
  • Your aging loved one has not been attending to his hygiene, including bathing, washing his hands, brushing his hair or brushing his teeth
  • The home has become disorganized, messy or even dirty
  • You find items placed or stored in a logical places such as canned goods in the refrigerator or clothing in the oven
  • You notice excessive expenditures on bank accounts or credit card statements
  • Your aging loved one begins receiving a tremendous number of packages from mail-order services or televised sales services
  • Your aging loved one no longer seems capable of following the progression of a conversation, or is not expressing emotion in a way that is appropriate for the situation.

If you have concerns that your aging loved one is no longer competent, contact the elder care services in your area for help finding legal resources that can help you protect his interests.

When researching options for elder care agencies in Mesa, AZ call us at (480) 535-6800. Home care counselors at Endeavor Home Care are available to talk with you about your in-home care needs including how to reduce caregiver stress while providing better, affordable care. We are an elder care agency providing home care in Mesa, AZ.

Elder Care in Mesa, AZ: What the Supreme Court’s Health Care Ruling Means for Consumers

Recently The Wall Street Journal did an excellent job of explaining how the Supreme Court’s latest ruling will impact consumers. The article is written in layman’s terms so that it is easier to understand.

The bottom line for most Americans is that the new law won’t go into effect until 2014, but that doesn’t mean it should be ignored. Think about your situation and your options now- plan ahead.

Insurance Premiums in the Future

Most consumers can expect to keep seeing increases in premiums and co-payments because the underlying cost of health care is expected to rise. The law contains a few mechanisms to curb premiums, but it also requires that many insurance providers make their benefits more generous, which will raise their cost. Older people could see their premiums go down because of the new age rating rules insurers will face. People who buy policies without the help of an employer could get a better deal by being able to shop on the exchanges, where comparing plans will be easier than before.

What Can You Expect to See if You Choose NOT to Have Health Insurance?

The penalty will start at $95 a year or up to 1% of a person’s income, whichever is greater.

Here are some of the questions that the Wall Street Journal Addresses:

• Does this mean the health overhaul law is in place for good?

• What happens to any benefits I already get because of the law?

• When will I see the big changes from the law?

• What if I already have insurance?

• What will happen to my insurance premiums?

For more information and to read the entire article click here.

If you or a loved one is in need of elder care in Mesa, AZ please contact us at (480) 535-6800 When researching options for elder care agencies in Mesa AZ, home care counselors at Endeavor Home Care are available to talk with you about your elder care needs including how to reduce caregiver stress while providing better, affordable care. We are an elder care agency providing home care in Mesa AZ.