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vision loss

New Technologies Provide Real Help for Those with Vision Loss

Impacting millions of Americans, vision loss can be as varied as the individuals who experience it – from simply having to put on a pair of reading glasses to skim through the morning paper, to complete blindness. And it’s a lot more common in older adults, with one in every three senior citizens over age 65 experiencing some type of eye disease that affects vision, like glaucoma, cataracts, macular degeneration, as well as others. Thankfully, as with a lot of other challenging conditions, technology continues to explode with choices to improve standard of living for people experiencing vision problems. Simply take a look at a few of the vision enhancement tools that are now available: Read more

Taking Care of Parents

Affording Arizona Home Care: Payment Options You May Not Know

Arizona Home CarePick a senior, any senior, and you’re likely to hear the same sentiments: the vast majority of older adults agree that they’d prefer to spend their elder years at home over moving to a nursing home facility. However, there are a lot of misconceptions about who pays for Arizona home care. Medicare? Medicaid? Insurance? The reality, per CPA Jerry Lowe, is, “For the most part, the clients who have home care are private pay.”

Although Medicare does cover home health care on a limited basis, if it’s deemed to be medically necessary, it does not cover homemaker services – and, most health insurance and Medicare supplemental plans don’t cover any type of in-home care.

According to Rod Perkins, VP of insurance regulation of the American Council of Life Insurers, “Baby boomers have seen their parents have long-term care needs and weren’t prepared. And it’s not just an old-age product. You could need in-home care as a result of an accident.”

If you and your senior loved ones aren’t prepared to pay out of pocket for home care in Arizona however, rest assured that there are some additional avenues to explore, such as:

  • Veterans’ assistance (click here to check eligibility requirements)
  • PACE (Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly)
  • Long-term care insurance policies that specifically include in-home care services
  • Reverse mortgages
  • Organizations geared to assist with specific needs, such as the Alzheimer’s Association, the ALS Association, and Easter Seals, may provide respite care vouchers
  • Community support, such as through religious organizations, the local Area on Aging, the United Way and area senior centers

The Benefits.gov site is also a great resource to determine what federal benefits you may qualify for. And, contact Endeavor Home Care for more resources and assistance with making sure no stone is left unturned when it comes to providing Arizona home care for your precious senior loved ones. We’re skilled at exploring every possible avenue to help families uncover any benefits for which their senior loved ones qualify. Let us help make professional in-home care services a reality for you by calling (480) 535-6800!

Tips for Alzheimers Care

alzheimers care

Some days are better than others, so the more flexible and adaptable you are, the better care you will be able to offer your loved one.

Having a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease can be a difficult process, especially if you are the primary caregiver. Your loved one likely requires constant support, and having to know what to do and how can make you feel almost as confused as your loved one. But there are a few ways to improve the quality of Alzheimer’s care you provide:

Use schedules to your advantage. With careful scheduling, you can plan your loved one’s days so that they are as comfortable as possible. The more consistent a routine you can establish, the less confusion they will experience. In addition, if they have to do something complicated or deviate from the routine, schedule that during the time of day they are the most alert and agreeable.

Don’t turn the schedule into a crutch, however. If you rely too much on the schedule, it can actually make things more difficult for your loved one. Things may often take longer than scheduled, and that’s perfectly fine. The important part is that a routine exists, not that each day is perfectly orchestrated down to the minute.

Remain adaptable. Alzheimer’s disease progresses as time goes on, so the capabilities your loved one has now may not be there in a few years. In addition, some days are better than others. Sometimes your loved one will be worse than their usual, and sometimes they will be better. The more flexible and adaptable you are, the better care you will be able to offer them.

Take care of yourself. Just as you are responsible for caring for your loved one, you are also responsible for caring for yourself. There is no shame in needing a break or asking for help. Don’t forget that you can’t help them if you aren’t at your best.

The most important part of being an Alzheimer’s caregiver is the love and care needed to support your loved one in this difficult time in their life. As long as you try your best and are open to improvement, you will do a good job.

Contact us for more information on Alzheimer’s care.

Does Your Elderly Parent Have Diabetes? Consider Home Healthcare

home health care

Anyone can easily learn how to operate a glucose meter; it involves a simple finger prick for a blood sample and –for most meters—just five seconds to read the result.

Managing Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes is a constant challenge, even more so for seniors who may have lost some manual dexterity, have memory problems or suffer from nerve damage. In-home healthcare may be the best option for some families; however, if you are caring for a loved one with diabetes you should be aware of the following potential issues.

Blood glucose testing is the primary tool for a person with diabetes to manage their disease. Today’s glucose meters tendto be small and can be difficult to handle for persons with limited movement in the hands and fingers.

Anyone can easily learn how to operate a glucose meter; it involves a simple finger prick for a blood sample and –for most meters—just five seconds to read the result. Most diabetics are instructed to test their blood sugar 3-4 times a day.

The result of the blood glucose test will determine what the next dose of insulin or other medication should be. You’ll need to not only learn how to use the meter, but also keep a document handy with doctor’s instructions regarding how to adjust medications based on these test results. Obviously, seniors who have memory problems will need close monitoring to ensure that tests are conducted on schedule and that medications are accurately dispensed.

If your loved one exhibits odd behaviors, don’t assume that these are a result of aging or dementia! Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) reactions can cause slurred speech, dizziness and anxiety; a person experiencing hypoglycemia can appear to be drunk. If you see this kind of behavior you will want to test your loved one’s blood sugar immediately.

Finally, persons with diabetes are prone to develop sores that won’t heal, especially on their feet. If the person has diminished sensation due to nerve damage, a small cut or blister can become gangrenous surprisingly quickly, often leading to amputations. Be sure to check the person’s feet regularly; at least every 3-4 days.

Caring for diabetes is a 24-hour-a-day job that is difficult for a family member to take on; a better option might be to hire a service that provides in-home care for your loved one. If you’re fortunate enough to live in the Arizona Valley, you have the home care experts at your service: Endeavor Senior Care. We provide a full spectrum of in-home care to help your loved one live independently for as long as possible and give you peace of mind. If you have questions or would like to learn more, please contact us.

Caregivers Home Care: Why the Elderly May Refuse Help

As a person ages, they may find it difficult to let go and allow others to assist them. Whether it is pride, stubbornness, or just a desire to do for themselves as long as possible,  there is a chance they will refuse help.

caregivers home care

If you are unsure why the person is refusing help, as direct open-ended questions.

For caregivers, home care for the elderly is a balancing act. It will require them to learn when to step in, and when to sit back and allow the person to do certain things on their own.

Understanding Why They Refuse Help

Ageing is difficult for some to accept, despite it being a natural part of life. The person often does not want to admit they are getting older, or they fear the negative connotations associated with being labeled as elderly.

For others, accepting help can cause them to feel embarrassed, inadequate, or lead to feelings of helplessness. No one wants to feel like a burden to others, and admitting they are incapable of doing certain things for themselves is extremely difficult.

Accepting help from a caregiver can also feel intrusive. They believe the caregiver will take the last of their independence, not allowing them to make any decisions on their own.

How To Overcome Rejections

There are several things you can do if an elderly person is refusing help that they desperately need.

Ask Direct Questions

If you are unsure why the person is refusing help, as direct open-ended questions. Do they feel like it would be a burden? Are they worried about having a stranger in the house? Are they afraid of something?

Be Patient and Understanding

Let them know that you worry, but that you understand why they might not want assistance. It is important to stay calm and show patience. It often takes several conversations to convince them to accept help. Getting angry or trying to force the issue is counterproductive to what you hope to accomplish.

Start Small

Sometimes starting small can help them become more receptive to allowing others to help. Talk to them about hiring someone to help with grocery shopping, laundry, or housekeeping once a week. Once they are open to this, gradually offer more help.

Discuss Options

For the elderly, feeling as if you are losing control of your own life is the most difficult part. Discuss what they would like, and the options that are available for them. Help them to understand they still have a voice and a choice in the type of care they receive.

For more useful information on elderly care contact us at Endeavor Home Care.

Deciding if Care at Home is Right For Your Loved One

care at home

Making decisions about an elderly loved one can be difficult.

There often comes a time when we must decide if our loved one might need a little extra care at home. One of the last things that we want is to take away our aging loved one’s independence. (S)he seems to be getting along fine on his/her own but you worry. So how do you decide if care at home is the right choice?

Here are a few questions you should ask yourself when making that decision:

Is your loved one getting all the care he/she needs when they need it?

Oftentimes, it is neccessary for an elderly person to be on a specific diet or certain medications. If you find that mom or dad is becoming forgetful when it comes to meeting specific criteria in his/her life it might be time to think about in-home care. A professional home care expert will make sure to remind your loved one to take any necessary medication and make sure he/she adheres to any diet restrictions.

Is housework becoming too difficult to handle?

If your loved ones’ home has turned from neat-as-a-pin to just falling short of a pig pen, it might be time to consider home care. An aging adult may find it more difficult to keep up with housework. There’s nothing worse than an aging loved one being too embarassed to have visitors because he/she can no longer keep up with household chores. An experienced home care expert can help bring pride back to your loved one and his/her home.

Are you worried when you are away from your loved one?

If you find yourself worrying about your loved one while you are away it may be time to consider care at home. Nobody can tend to someone 24 hours a day. It is exhausting and unrealistic. As the adult child, your life must go on and there’s a good chance that you have other responsibilities. If you have a job or a family of your own there’s a good chance that finding the time to check on mom or dad is challenging. Do you worry that your loved one is hindered with forgetfulness or has limited physical capabilities? If so, it is time to consider care at home.

Making decisions about an elderly loved one can be difficult. If you are faced with tough decisions about your aging loved one we can help ease your mind. To talk more about this, or anything else, please Contact Us.

Senior Care at Home: Think About the Stairs

Often household injuries occur due to a fall down the stairs. A small slip can result in a broken bone especially for a senior. Many seniors want to stay in their own home so it is necessary for loved ones to make the environment as safe as possible. Since it is typically not possible to remove stairs from an existing home and install ramps here are some other tips to increase safety of stairs.

Railings

Verify existing railings are securely installed. When pulled on they should not wiggle at all. If railings do not exist it is strongly recommended they be installed. It is best to install railings on both sides of the stairs. Also, verify your loved one uses the railings when going up and down the stairs. Use of railings significantly decreases the risk of falls.

senior care at homeClear Clutter

Items left on the stairs are a tripping hazard. Nothing should be left on the stairs at any point. If your loved on likes to put items on the stairs that need to be brought to another floor consider placing an empty basket adjacent to the stairs where they can accumulate items to transport. The key is to not put the basket actually on the stairs but instead adjacent.

Lighting

Stairs need to be well-lit. Sometimes this is an issue with stairs leading to the basement. Consider installing higher wattage bulbs over staircases or add reflective tape to the edge of the steps.

Duplicate Items

It is best for your loved on to walk up and down the stairs without trying to carry items at the same time. This will allow them to have free hands to hold onto the railing. Ask what type of items they typically find they need to carry up and down the stairs. If possible buy duplicates of these items so they have one upstairs and one downstairs eliminating the need to transport the item. For example, if they are carrying a water cup upstairs consider purchasing disposable cups to keep upstairs.

Care at Home

Taking the above steps will help lower the likelihood of a fall. However, you may still worry that your loved one is no longer stable enough to traverse the stairs. This does not mean you need to move your loved one. Instead consider the option of senior care at home. A home care aide can help with light housework, meal planning and preparation, medication reminders and provide companionship for your loved one. In addition a safety assessment can be conducted of the home to identify areas of improvement that will help reduce the risk of injury. For more information about at home care contact us. Endeavor Home Care offers senior care in many Arizona communities including Scottsdale, Phoenix, Sun City, Mesa and more.

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.