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Why Hydration is Imperative in Eldercare

It might be a matter of amusement when people afraid of the water consider their bodies contain it. The brain, skin, organs and even the bones are made of some percentage of water. Water carries impurities out of the body, helps to maintain body temperature, lubricates the joints and carries necessary nutrients throughout the body. Dehydration occurs when the body doesn’t get enough incoming water. Men generally need about three liters per day, while women require two liters per day to remain properly hydrated.

Hydration in the Elderly

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Staying hydrated is important, as the senior body’s water content naturally decreases with age.

On the other hand, it’s not so funny when it’s our parents or other elderly family members. What isn’t generally recognized is that the senior body stores and uses its fluids (read water) differently. First, the senior body’s water content naturally decreases. Second, aging kidneys are less able to process water and sodium, resulting in inability to contain water during dehydration. Third, the bell inside our elders stops going off with age, the one reminding them that a drink of water would be a good idea. Elders’ thirst button gets turned off, too, so they simply don’t remember to drink anything.

Consequences of Dehydration in the Elderly

Physical events like slip and fall occasions are only the second act of the play. The first act begins in the mind of the senior. The embarrassment of incontinence prevents many elderly persons from drinking the proper amount of water. They are embarrassed at using the bathroom so many times. Confusion or the beginnings of dementia mean elders who simply don’t remember if they’ve eaten or drunk anything in a given time period. Also in the mind of the senior, asking for help due to inability to fetch a drink for himself is another cause of embarrassment. If elders live alone, they perhaps have trouble carrying a bottle or glass of water due to arthritis or the shaking common with other diseases. Frustration, fear and embarrassment cause many seniors to just forget it all together.

The damage done to the elderly body is manifold. Many medications seniors take for various ailments and diseases deplete their bodies of necessary fluids. Since the organs are made primarily of water, they will weaken. The brain, deprived of water, will develop headaches. Bones become brittle, skin dry and subject to injuries and fatigue. Kidney failure and seizures are common. The second act, therefore, is a weakened body susceptible to falls and coma.

How Can We Help Them?

Just saying “oh, all you need is a bottle of water” isn’t enough. Seniors won’t remember, nor will they get it themselves. They need help. Most senior hospitalizations are due to dehydration. More senior deaths are due to dehydration, not the falls it caused. Most eldercare includes monitoring the state of the senior’s hydration. It is necessary to his or her longevity. In the case of an assisted living facility, the personnel will monitor the senior’s water intake. Endeavor In-Home Care, trusted providers of companion care Chandler, AZ and the surrounding areas depend on, can help ensure the hydration and health of your loved one. Please contact us today.

Elder Home Care Agency in AZ Embraces Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

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Our caregivers can handle many of those tasks that are difficult for those undergoing treatment for colorectal cancer.

Do you or someone you know suffer from colorectal cancer? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s figures, the disease negatively impacts the lives of more than 130,000 people each year. Subsequently, the United States government has once again set aside March 2015 as the month to remind people of the deadly disease and its consequences. As such, all of the people associated with our eldercare home care are embracing the initiative too.

Arizona residents diagnosed with colorectal cancer don’t have to go it alone. Our elder home care agency can provide comforting, important services to them while they undergo potentially lifesaving treatments, like radiation therapy, surgery and chemotherapy. For example, all three treatments are known to drain a person of energy and leave them unable to complete basic tasks. Our caregivers can handle many of those tasks, like running errands, picking up the mail, washing the bed linens and preparing a bowl of soup.

We can also stay on after the treatments are over and provide additional, supportive care that colorectal cancer patients and their families may need. For instance, the person may want someone to walk with them as they build their strength back up. They may also crave someone to talk to, drive them to follow-up appointments, pick up colostomy supplies or just hold their hand at particularly rough times of the day.

To learn more about the wide variety of home care options available to elderly people diagnosed with colorectal cancer, please contact us at Endeavor Home Care today. All of our home caregivers are rigorously screened, trained, bonded and insured to meet Arizona’s regulatory standards. Plus, with our team, customized care plans are the norm, not the exception. So, Arizona’s families can rest easy that their loved ones will receive high-quality, individualized care year round.

Finding the Best In-home Care For Your Loved One: Questions to Ask Potential Candidates

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Make sure to ask the right questions when choosing a home care provider.

Choosing an in-home care provider for your loved one is one of the most important things you’ll ever do. You want to make sure you’re picking the right person for the job– someone you feel confident will provide your loved one with top-notch care. With this in mind, you’ll want to be thoroughly prepared before interviewing any potential caregiver candidates. Below we will list some questions you should consider asking when interviewing an in-home care provider:

Why are you interested in this caregiving position? Open-ended questions like this one allow the candidate to give more information than a simple yes or no question. Of course, you’re hoping to hear that the candidate enjoys working with the elderly, or likes being in a nurturing role.

Do you have any caregiving experience? Ideally, the candidate will have previous in-home caregiving experience working with the elderly. However, you might also want to consider candidates who have other types of caregiving experience, such as nurses or nannies. You’ll want the candidate to demonstrate that he or she has previous experience in a nurturing role, if not a direct caregiving role.

Are you comfortable handling my loved one’s mental/emotional state? Of course, this isn’t relevant in every situation, but it’s important to ask up front if your loved one is suffering from dementia, depression, anxiety, or even just moodiness. Being up front about your loved one’s state of mind will help ensure that the caregiver you hire is comfortable handling tough situations.

I’ll be running background checks on all strong candidates. Is there anything I should know before running the check? You want candidates to know in advance that you’ll be running a background check. Invite them to disclose and explain any charges on their record prior to running the check.

What types of training or certifications do you have? It’s important to know if candidates have any caregivingcertifications. Consider asking specifically about CPR and first aid training.

Do you have any other jobs or responsibilities that might interfere with the designated working hours? You want to ensure that the candidate you hire is reliable and will always be there during working hours. Additionally, you might consider asking if the candidate is available to stay later occasionally, if you’re delayed in getting home.

Do you have a driver’s license and clean driving record? Chances are, an in-home caregiver will need to drive your loved one to appointments from time to time. You want to be sure that the person you hire is a safe driver.

For additional information about interviewing an in-home care provider, please contact us.

Hiring an Aide: Home Care Agency or “Gray Market?”

Most older people who cannot live alone prefer to remain in their homes. That makes sense; it is where their things are, where they know the neighbors and where their memories are based. Staying in their own homes is also a way to feel as if they are still somewhat independent. If your loved one needs companionship or assistance in daily living activities, you might be thinking about running an ad for an aide, or calling a person recommended by a friend. After all, is there any solid reason to use a home care agency? To answer that question, you need to consider several things.

Can you trust that someone you hire from the “Gray Market” will be trained in elder care? Will they know how to assist your loved one in standing or in walking to prevent falls? Will they know what to do if a fall occurs? home care agency

Will the person you hire be willing to do all the things your loved one requires?

Will they be loyal to you and guard your privacy?

Can you trust their integrity? Is your loved one, and her possessions, secure with the aide?

What will you do if the aide “calls off” or wants to go on vacation? How easy will it be to get a replacement?

What kind of expertise or training does the aide have in working with people with impaired abilities or memory?

Can the “Gray Market” aide be relied upon to know when a higher level of care is required? Will you be able to change from the aide to a nurse or nursing assistant readily?

Hiring from the “Gray Market” may seem less costly, but you cannot put a price on peace of mind. You need to know that your loved one is healthy, happy and not a victim of neglect or elder abuse. Hiring a certified home care aide from a home care agency may be far less expensive in the long run, when you consider that there is someone standing behind her, ensuring that she ( or he) will give your loved ones the care and attention they deserve.

If you are considering getting in home care for someone you love, contact us. We understand how much getting the right care matters.

Should I pay my home senior care provider “under the table?”

The last thing you need when a loved one is in need of at home senior care is to be audited by the IRS. OK, it’s not exactly something anyone wants, but the short-term savings of hiring a helper under-the-table will be quickly overwhelmed by the costs of penalties and possibly legal fees if you are caught not paying required taxes.

at home senior careA home-care agency will work with your budget and identify the best personnel to care for your family member in a home setting. And you will know that you and the care givers who are working in your home are in compliance with federal and local laws. And important, too, you will know that the people who are working on your family’s behalf are contributing to their own social security retirement accounts.

It’s not just celebrities and politicians who get caught up in “nanny-gate” situations through inappropriate hiring processes. Essentially the government likes to keep “off the books” employment to a minimum, so unless you are running a lemonade stand someone needs to be paying taxes. Your legal options are to hire a care giver directly and take responsibility for filing tax reports (which you either have to do yourself or pay your own tax provider to handle) or you can contract with an at home senior care agency and be confident that payroll and taxes are handled in a professional manner.

If you would like to consider the option of professionally managed compassionate at home senior care please contact us.