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Senior nutrition

Concerned About Senior Nutrition? Learn How to Overcome Nutritional Challenges.

Concerned About Senior Nutrition?With the all the hustle and bustle of our lives, how many times do we grab a quick cup of coffee and a donut on our hurried way to work, stopping for junk food on the way home to avoid the need to cook? Younger adults with a high metabolism, optimal muscle strength, and fewer chronic health conditions can get away more easily with short-term poor eating habits; however, when it comes to senior nutrition, it’s a different story.

While our bodies go through changes in aging, the need for appropriate nutrition becomes much more critical. Seniors who are malnourished are at a heightened risk for falls, anemia, maladies, hospitalizations, and more. It’s estimated that as a nation, we spend over $150 billion annually in medical costs stemming from elderly malnutrition.

There are numerous hurdles for the elderly to overcome in order to obtain adequate senior nutrition, including:

  • Medication side effects, such as impacting taste and smell
  • Trouble eating due to arthritis or dental concerns
  • Difficulty with the tasks involved with shopping or fixing meals
  • Loneliness and depression, making mealtime less enjoyable
  • Lack of enthusiasm to prepare balanced meals when cooking for just one
  • Financial limitations

To compound the issue further, doctors’ appointments and checkups often neglect nutritional counseling. According to Simin Nikbin Meydani, director for the Jean Mayer USDA Human Research Center on Aging at Tufts, “If you go to your physician, they will weigh you and check your heart, but they are not measuring your nutritional status.”

So how can we guarantee our older family members are maintaining proper senior nutrition? The MyPlate for Older Adults from Tufts University is a great place to begin, outlining simple dietary modifications that are less inhibitive than trying a complete dietary makeover. For example, “Tea and toast can turn into a bowl of oatmeal with a banana. It’s just as easy to make,” according to Shirley Chao, of the MA Executive Office of Elder Affairs.

Another choice is to engage the services of a professional in-home caregiver, such as those at Endeavor Home Care in Scottsdale, AZ, who can help with planning wholesome, delicious meals, running errands such as picking up groceries, and spending time with seniors during mealtimes to stave off loneliness.

For more strategies for helping improve nutrition for an older adult, contact Endeavor Home Care. We can plan and prepare healthy meals for seniors – and we’ll even clean up the kitchen afterwards! We service several locations in Arizona, including Tucson, Phoenix, Scottsdale, Fountain Hills, Mesa, Sun City West, Gilbert and more.

Pill Reminder Boxes: Effective for Seniors or Possibly Dangerous?

Pill Reminder Boxes On average, a senior takes between 15-18 different prescriptions each and every day, so one can understand how easy it can be to miss a pill here and there or take an incorrect dosage. However, the health hazards that happen because of those medication mistakes are substantial. Enter the pill reminder box: such a simple concept of placing the correct meds into the appropriate little boxes each day. Problem resolved, right?

Startlingly, research recently points to a considerably different outcome. Mature adults accustomed to taking medications directly from the original packaging who switched to a pill reminder box were inundated with medical concerns, including falls, hypoglycemia, and in one case, a person unable to get out of the bathtub until a rescue 12 hours later.

The research involved 29 older persons over age 75 who were not using pill reminder boxes and were, inadvertently, not taking their prescriptions as directed by their physicians. For two months, half of the seniors began using a pill reminder box, while the other half continued taking their prescriptions as they always had.

The health concerns, surprisingly, were realized only in the seniors who had just started to use the pill reminder boxes. The theory behind these unexpected results comes from the thought that the seniors were skipping doses or taking their prescriptions incorrectly prior to using the pill reminder box, and were suffering from side effects from taking full doses of their drugs.

Lead researcher Dr. Debi Bhattacharya stresses the need for those planning to change to a pill reminder/organizer system to first seek advice from their physician or pharmacist to verify dosage amounts. And she makes clear, “People who are already using a pill organizer without any ill effects should not stop using it as they do seem to help some patients take their medication as prescribed. It’s the switching stage which appears to be the danger.”

Endeavor Home Care can assist with medication reminders to ensure aging adults take prescriptions when they’re supposed to, assist with transportation to pick up prescriptions, and assist with noting any medication side effects that should be reported to the physician immediately. Contact Endeavor Home Care for important assistance with keeping your senior loved one safe and healthy. We provide home care services throughout Arizona.

Senior Care Services Offer Loved Ones Personal Choice and Independence

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With a little help, seniors can have lots of independence and end a reliance on family for care.

Providing care is a 24/7 responsibility that takes place 365 days a year, for a lifetime. Understandably, that makes caregiving an impossible job for one person. Blessedly, no one has to take on all of that responsibility alone. There are other people willing to step in and lend a hand so caregivers can take time out to attend to their own needs. Oftentimes, those helping hands may be found by contacting a senior care service.

Senior care services vary in depth, breadth and purpose. Some are designed to provide skilled nursing services and others offer non-medical ones. Non-medical senior care services are primarily intended to provide seniors with opportunities for social interaction and assistance with daily activities. As such, the services may take place in the senior’s home, a public place or a business venue. Sometimes the day care programs are rigid, cold and impersonal. Other times, they’re flexible, personal and full of warmth.

The senior care programs that are flexible, personal and hospitable tend to provide the most benefits to their participants. They allow seniors to develop friendships, remain active in their communities, exercise personal choice and enjoy independence while continuing to manage their health problems at home. Plus, many of the programs’ costs are covered by long-term care insurance. The senior care services offered through Endeavor Home Care are prime examples. They can be personalized to suit a person’s needs and changed whenever necessary.

Consequently, seniors participating in the process don’t feel like they’re being treated like children. They have a choice of pre-screened caregivers and can choose when and where they receive care. Of course they can also dictate how much care is received. For instance, some seniors may merely need assistance with getting out of bed in the morning. Others may want help with the dinner dishes and light housekeeping. To learn more about the various senior care services that are available in your area, please contact us today.

Senior Care At Home: Preventing Falls

preventing falls - companion care phoenix

Make sure there is enough room to get around the home without having to step around or over furniture or other items such as pet bowls, shoes, or general clutter.

As we age, even the place we know the best can become a hazard. If you are caring for an elderly loved one make sure their home is as well! Knowing what causes falls in the home can help you to prevent them so educate yourself and take steps to ensure that your loved ones are safe.

Always make sure the way is clear! Make sure there is enough room to get around the home without having to step around or over furniture or other items such as pet bowls, shoes, or general clutter. Make sure that all carpets are secure and remove any high pile throw rugs or rugs that are on slippery surfaces.

Clear out any cluttered areas! If the garage, laundry room, or other areas of the home have a high accumulation of clutter, consider re-organizing so that everything is off the floor. The more room your loved one has to walk, the better. While you are organizing, put the most used items in places that are easy to access, for example laundry detergent and other cleaning materials should be easy to reach without stooping or lifting them off high shelves.

Are there any steps in the home? Make sure any areas where climbing needs to occur, including getting into and out of bathtubs or showers, are equipped with grab bars or handles. Having something to hold on to makes getting places a lot easier. Consider the shower area itself as well. If there are no anti-slip features in the shower, buy a mat or have an anti-slip coating applied.

Consider their shoes! Always make sure that shoes fit properly and are easy to walk in. If their shoes are older, consider getting new shoes that have proper traction and support. If your loved one wears slippers around the house, make sure they stay on their feet without having to shuffle or adjust them constantly. If this is not the case consider buying new slippers or having them wear socks with their slippers to prevent them from falling off or slipping.

Another issue to watch out for are the side effects of any medication your loved one is taking. Many medications cause dizziness or light-headedness and could add to instability especially when standing up after sitting for long periods of time or when bending over. Discuss these side-effects with the person your caring for and make sure they take their time getting around the home.

All of these things can add to a senior’s feeling of independence, but it’s never a bad idea to lend a helping hand. Whether you need simple cleaning services or someone to help your loved one around the home, Endeavor Senior Care is the solution for you! Visit our website to learn more about our senior care at home or contact us to receive information about home care and companion care Phoenix and the surrounding areas trust.

Positive Senior Care at Home

Whatever our age, independence is an essential part of our daily life. From birth, we are taught to achieve, to progress in skills; to thrive through our abilities and choices. There is no greater fear than that of losing control and of not being able to do even simple things for ourselves, but when we age this is exactly what happens.

senior care at home

Senior care at home can restore an elderly loved one’s sense of independence and enjoyment of life.

For the elderly, the active normal world which was once their reality suddenly becomes a hostile and lonely environment, and they become, in their own eyes, nothing but a problem.

We all need to feel needed and to know that when we help, our efforts are appreciated and that we have done things right.

Remember, with senior care at home, the aim is to make them feel better, to boost their morale and self-esteem so that they can enjoy their life. Check out our services at Endeavor Senior Care. We offer many services for your peace of mind, and to help give them what they need to flourish.

Daily living skills are things we do every day without even thinking about them. For the elderly, however, many times they must relearn these things We are here to help you to help them find their way. When you need a hand, we are here. Contact us. Our home caregivers are professional, trained, compassionate people with the health and well-being of your elderly loved one in mind. Come to www.EndeavorSeniorCare.com. We can help them, and help you by easing your worries.

From Hospitalization to Home Care in 3 Simple Steps

homecare

If you hire outside help to care for your loved one, the information you relay from the doctor will make the difference in how the home care service provider understands their needs.

The time has come when your elderly loved one is going to be discharged.  Sometimes the announcement comes with enough advanced notice so that you can prepare for your loved one’s return to his residence or yours.  If you are one of those lucky ones whose parent is discharged early during the week, you might be able to call a long list of numbers given to you by the hospital staff if you have any questions about your parent’s post-acute care.  However, if your loved one is discharged on a Friday, your chances of talking to a live operator for post-acute care advice over the weekend are slim to none.

As the family caregiver or point-of-contact, you will be the one receiving any kind of information about your parent or spouse’s prognosis.  Unfortunately, at the present time there is no universal system set in place when it comes to hospital discharge, and the information you relay to your caregiver (if you hire outside help) from the doctor will make the difference in how the home care service provider will understand your loved one’s needs.

Hospital discharges don’t have to be complicated.  To make life easier for yourself and the caregiver you hire, follow these simple steps:

Ask your loved one’s physician for a written, detailed report that an average person can understand. 

Your certified nurse assistant may understand medical jargon, but you as the family caregiver might not.  To be as engaged as possible, ask for clear language so you know the medications, prognosis, type of daily living assistance and any specialized care your loved one needs upon returning home.

If your loved one requires specialized care, ask your doctor to be specific if the report contains inadequate details.

Specialized care means going beyond the normal scope of assistance with daily living (e.g., light housekeeping, meal preparation, laundry, etc.).  If a patient’s condition calls for usage of a nebulizer, colostomy bag, G-tube, or other equipment, a regular family caregiver without the knowledge, training and experience of such care may do more harm than good.  You can avoid hospital readmission if you get the right type of care for your loved one.  Understand your limitations – what you can or cannot do for your elderly loved one.

Make sure you hire a caregiver from a 24-hour home care agency.

Knowing that you have support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, gives you an incredible peace of mind.  Not every home care agency offers 24 hour support, and you might find yourself in a bind if you can’t reach anyone for immediate answers.  Whether you hire a caregiver for a few hours a day or for 24 hours round-the clock, it’s always good to know in the back of your mind that you could call a hotline at any hour, day or night.

Contact us at Endeavor Home Care!  Our hotline (480) 535-6800 is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  Our exceptional team of medical professionals is ready to answer any questions you may have about homecare services.

Senior care and a simple solution to health-care-associated infections (HAIs): handwashing.

It seems like a simple solution to healthcare-associated infections (HAIs), but hand washing remains one of the single-most preventatives as outlined in a 2014 strategy updates for acute care facilities, and a policy that applies to in-home care providers as well.

senior care

Hand-washing is still one of the most effective measures to take against the spread of infection.

In addition, notes the report, performance in these and other areas are being measured to assess outcomes centered on the prevention of healthcare associated infections, which can be a primary concern for senior care providers.

Infections were categorized by their prevention recommendations and given a low-to-high ranking based on the evidence gathered.

A focus on implementing specific methods of intervention proven to mitigate HAI situations, particularly during the initial outbreak of infections are determined.

By turning attention to locations in the hospital at high risk for HAIs, or certain categories of patient diagnosis, prevention strategies can be initiated throughout the entire hospital.

“Basic practices include recommendations where the potential to impact HAI risk clearly outweighs the potential for undesirable effects….Special approaches include recommendations where the intervention is likely to reduce HAI risk but where where there is concern about the risks for undesirable outcomes, where the quality of evidence is low, or where evidence supports the impact of the intervention in select settings…or select patient populations.”

Primary considerations for basic approaches include common areas that could preceded an instance of infection. As such, a few of the ongoing contributors to HAIS include:

—pneumonia caused by ventilator gateways

— Clostridium difficile infections

— Infections around surgical sites

— UTI infections associated with catheters

Always on the radar, too, are routines associated with daily useage of syringes and needles; in the latter case the concern is the re-use of these items; also, the lapse in judgement is suspect when a single vial of medication is considered ‘ok’ to use for multiple patients.

Looking for home care for your aging parent, or family member? Contact us to learn more about our care-giving services.