Home Care in Kennewick WA: Senior Memory Loss

How to Know When to See a Doctor for Memory Loss

 

Observing forgetfulness in your aging relative can be concerning. You may wonder if what they are experiencing is normal age-related memory loss or if there’s something worse going on.

What’s Normal

A little bit of memory loss, those “senior moments,” are completely normal. Lots of older adults do things like forget where they left their keys or forget where they parked the car.

 

Some other normal signs of age-related memory loss include:

  • Occasionally making a bad decision.
  • Forgetting to pay a bill.
  • Temporarily forgetting what day it is.
  • Forgetting a word.
  • Misplacing items once in a while.

These kinds of memory problems don’t indicate any need for the senior or their family caregivers to worry. They can be troublesome, but there are ways to deal with them, such as:

Using technology-based reminders.

Carrying a pocket calendar to write down appointments.

Jotting down important information.

Using apps that track where the car is parked.

 

What’s Not

  • Sometimes memory loss is more serious than the occasional slip. Some signs that your aging relative’s memory problems may indicate dementia are:
  • Using poor judgment often.
  • Difficulty taking care of finances.
  • Not knowing what year or time of the year it is.
  • Difficulty carrying on a conversation.
  • Misplacing items and not being able to find them.
  • Forgetting about an experience they’ve had.
  • No longer remembering how to read a clock.
  • Completely forgetting a person.

 

Although the above signs are indicators of dementia, there are also things that can cause temporary memory loss. Often, when the underlying problem is treated, the memory loss is reversible. Some temporary causes of memory loss are:

  • Certain medicines.
  • A head injury.
  • Stress, anxiety, or depression.
  • Chronic alcohol abuse.
  • Lack of vitamin B12.
  • Hypothyroidism.
  • Brain tumors.
  • Infection in the brain.

Experts at the Mayo Clinic say that the time to see the doctor about your aging relative’s memory loss is when they worry you. The doctor can conduct tests to determine how bad the memory loss is and try to determine the cause.

If your family member is diagnosed with dementia, involving home care early on can make living with the condition easier. During the early stages, the older adult may need home care for only a few hours each week to help with things like paying bills and doing complex household tasks. As the disease progresses, you can increase the amount of time home care spends with the senior, ensuring they are safe and comfortable when you cannot be there.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Home Care in Kennewick, WA, please contact the caring staff at Home Care Solutions today. We serve the Tri-Cities and Surrounding Areas.  Call 509-627-8575

Sources
Mayoclinic.org
Nia.nih.gov
Webmd.com

 

 

 

Home Care in Pasco WA: Senior Vision Trouble

Vision troubles can show up in a variety of different ways for your aging adult. When you know what to look for, you can help her to get to the eye doctor before a serious problem develops.

She’s Definitely Experiencing Vision Loss

Often vision loss is more obvious to you than it might be to your aging adult. You might notice that she’s squinting a lot or that she’s holding things closer to her eyes or farther away than normal. These are all attempts to compensate for her lost vision and to try to see more effectively. This can happen even with corrective lenses. It’s possible that she needs a new prescription or that there are other issues at play.

She’s Mentioned “Floaters” or Flashes

Floaters or flashing lights are common with a variety of issues, such as the aura stage of migraines. But they can also show up for other reasons, like when the retina detaches from the eye or becomes torn. If your elderly family member has never experienced floaters before and is suddenly mentioning them, it’s important to determine a cause as soon as possible.

She’s Having a Tough Time with Colors

If your elderly family member is mentioning that she’s seeing different colors than you are, she might be having trouble with her vision. The most common cause for this is cataracts because the cataract clouds the lens of her eye and changes how she sees the world. A full eye exam can help your senior to get to the full reason behind the issues she’s having seeing colors correctly.

She’s Rubbing Her Eyes a Lot of Complaining of Irritation

Another sign that your senior is having eye trouble could be how she’s treating her eyes. If she’s telling you that they feel irritated, or like they’re burning, there might be something going on with them. She could also be rubbing them more than usual, especially if she’s unable to talk to you about how her eyes are feeling. Watch for signs like this so that you can try to address whatever might be happening.

Elder care providers can also help you to spot potential issues with your aging adult’s vision. They’ve got experience in spotting these types of issues and can clue you in on what you need to watch for in order to get your senior the help that she needs as quickly as possible.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Home Care in Pasco, WA, please contact the caring staff at Home Care Solutions today. We serve the Tri-Cities and Surrounding Areas.  Call 509-627-8575

Elderly Care in Burbank WA: Senior Independence Month

February is National Senior Independence Month.
Ask any senior what they want as they age and independence pops up. Senior citizens want to come and go as they please. They want to live in the home they’ve owned for years. They want to feel safe in that home.

National Senior Independence Month is a good time to look at all the things your dad is doing right. He’s walking every day. He’s eating three meals a day and drinking plenty of water. At some point, he’s going to need some help. Now is a good time to address what help he may need down the road. Kick off February by having an open conversation about elder care services.

 

The Range of Services Elder Care Aides Provide

Your dad may be healthy right now. Do you really know where he’ll be a year or two from now? His blood pressure may be a little too high. He might have fallen on an icy sidewalk and have a harder time walking up and down stairs. It’s these situations you need to think about. If something happens, how well could he manage housekeeping, meals, and transportation?

Those are just a few of the services available through an elder care agency. Your dad needs to think about whether he would need help carrying his laundry in the future. Is he always going to be able to drive, or will there come a time he needs help getting to appointments? Does he have plenty of friends nearby or is he likely to get lonely?

 

Elder Care Keeps Your Dad Independent

Your dad needs to think about these scenarios and what would happen if he took no action. If your dad isn’t supposed to drive and ignores his doctor and crashes, where will he be then? Would he go to jail? Is his insurance likely to keep him if his driving leads to a costly personal injury case? If arthritis kept him from cooking a meal, would he end up in the hospital due to malnutrition?

By being proactive, your dad is taking the steps needed to help him stay safe and stay independent. His caregiver comes only as often as needed. He still comes and goes as he pleases. He doesn’t have to move into assisted living or a nursing home. He’s safe in the home he loves with the help of a trained professional. That professional is only there when needed.

Take that first step. Call a home care agency to discuss elder care services that help your dad live independently at home without fear.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Elderly Care in Burbank, WA, please contact the caring staff at Home Care Solutions today. We serve the Tri-Cities and Surrounding Areas.  Call 509-627-8575

Home Care Services in Prosser WA: Avoid Caregiver Burnout

Burnout is a few steps beyond just stressed and every caregiver is at risk of venturing into that extreme exhaustion zone. But you can take some steps that help you to avoid burning out.

 

Remember That What You Do Matters

When you’re running around trying to solve everyone else’s problems, it’s easy to forget that you’re doing something that matters. But not everyone can be a caregiver and you’re doing something really important. Remember that the actions you take matter.

 

Streamline Communication

One of the tasks that can get out of hand fast is trying to keep other family members updated. If you’re spending tons of time texting, calling, and emailing all sorts of family members, you’re probably running yourself ragged. Find a way to streamline communication, especially in emergencies. Use a social media group or an email list instead of trying to contact everyone individually. You can send a message once and that takes a lot less time.

 

Take Little Steps toward Organization

Disorganization can cost you money, but as a caregiver, it costs you more in time and energy. Do what you can now to take little steps every day to be more organized. As you make strides toward this goal, you’re going to experience a lot less stress, just in trying to find what you’re looking for when you need it.

 

Ask Yourself What You Need and then Make a Plan

Get in the habit of asking yourself what you need at any given moment. If you notice you’re feeling overwhelmed, ask what you need. What you might need most right then is just a moment to think. And if that’s the case, take that moment. If what you need is more complicated, then make a plan to get what you need.

 

Give Yourself a Break Whenever You Can

You need to be more deliberate about taking breaks. That’s the one thing that most caregivers neglect. Find ways to support your elderly family member while you’re away, but don’t deny yourself that time for yourself. It will help you to be a much better caregiver.

Being a caregiver means that you’re juggling an awful lot all the time. It’s really important for you to stay in tune with yourself and to do what you can to meet your own needs. Other people may try to help, but they don’t necessarily know what you need. Help them know what you need.

 

If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Home Care Services in Prosser, WA, please contact the caring staff at Home Care Solutions today. We serve all of the Tri-Cities areas.  Call 509-627-8575

Elder Care in Prosser WA: Families Come Together

When you’re not in agreement with your parents or your siblings, senior care plans become a nightmare.
You need to work together. How can that happen when you all have different views on what’s needed and what style of care is best?

 

Discuss What Care Needs Are Necessary

Sit down and talk about what senior care needs are most important. Go through a list of activities of daily living and instrumental activities of daily living and see what your parents can and cannot do. Check off items where they need help. Those are the care tasks you need to focus on. Over time, you may add more, but you can worry about that later.

As you have the discussion, talk about who your parents are comfortable with. They may not want you and your siblings helping with bathing and toileting. They may not want your brother cooking meals, but they don’t like how you drive. Listen to your parents’ input in this meeting.

 

You Might Have to Get Someone to Mediate

Conflicts between siblings may happen. In some families, working around the problems isn’t possible. Too many disagreements occur and feelings get hurt. If this happens, a mediator can help. Find an impartial friend, pastor, or social worker. Offer both sides and ask for suggestions.

 

Split Tasks to Make Things Even

-When a parent needs care, it can be less stressful if everyone chips in. One sibling could cook meals and do the shopping. Another sibling could be the one scheduling appointments and bringing parents to those appointments. One sibling could take care of housekeeping and laundry.

-Grandchildren can be included. While they may be limited in what they can manage, they can help with light chores like sweeping, sorting laundry, and walking small pets around the yard.

-Split up the tasks, so that everyone is chipping in an equal amount of time. Don’t forget to fit in socialization for our parent in this too. Leave time to go for walks, watch movies, or play games.

 

You Have to Let Your Parents Give As Much Input as Possible

It’s crucial that you listen to your parents. They are the ones in need of help, so their opinions need to weigh heavily. If you can’t work with them, ask a senior care professional to help the family finalize your plans. A senior care agency can answer your questions and address your concerns and help everyone come to an agreement.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Elder Care in Prosser, WA, please contact the caring staff at Home Care Solutions today. We serve all of the Tri-Cities areas.  Call 509-627-8575

Homecare in Sunnyside WA: Winter Weather on Seniors

 

With age, elderly adults often face numerous challenges to their health and wellness.
From illness and injury to chronic conditions in physical and mental health, it seems that seniors face an ongoing struggle to stay healthy. That’s why it is so important for them to be proactive in avoiding situations where they could jeopardize their well-being. For seniors who are dependent on family caregivers and home care providers, they need extra attention and care to remain healthy during winter weather.

 

Winter Is Harder on Seniors

Cold weather and harsh conditions are tougher on everyone, and illnesses and injuries grow dramatically during winter months. However, the season is particularly hard on elderly adults for a number of reasons. Not only is it easier to spread and pick up bacteria and viruses, but seniors also tend to suffer the most with illnesses such as pneumonia, strep throat, and influenza. Other winter hazards include slip and fall accidents, poor nutrition, hypothermia, isolation, and loneliness. Family caregivers must be proactive when it comes to keeping their aging loved ones in the healthy zone.

 

Family Caregivers Can Help Elderly Relatives

The good news is that there are many things family caregivers can do to help their aging loved ones resist the worst health effects of winter. It requires plenty of advanced planning and constant attention to detail, but it’s worth it if their aging relatives escape some of the worst health issues related to winter.

 

Here are a few tips that family caregivers can use:

Hire a home care provider: Having a professional assistant during winter is essential for safe and healthy seniors. The home care provider can assist the senior with everything from getting dressed to running errands. They can help encourage exercise and prepare nutritious meals. Other services include light housework pet care, medication management, and companionship.

Practice good hygiene: Studies show that washing hands is the number one way to prevent germs from spreading, and family caregivers need to make it a part of everyone’s routine. Hand sanitizer is an adequate substitute when elderly adults, family caregivers, and home care providers are on outings.

Maintain a clean environment: The good condition of an elderly person’s home can help them stay healthy in lots of ways. Family caregivers and home care providers should always check the floors for slip and trip hazards, like throw rugs or melted snow. Another example is keeping up with housework, especially wiping surfaces to reduce germ transfer.

Medical appointments and nutritional needs: Family caregivers and home care providers must boost the senior’s overall health. This includes nutritious meals and snacks, adequate sleep, proper medications, and regular doctor visits. With a healthier body and properly managed conditions, their immune system will be stronger and therefore better able to resist germs.

Winter weather protection: Seniors have a harder time regulating body heat, so proper layering is essential. Other winter-related conditions like dry skin and chapped lips can be uncomfortable and even painful. Family caregivers and home care providers must assist seniors in dressing for the weather and taking care of their body to stay strong and healthy.

 

If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Homecare in Sunnyside, WA, please contact the caring staff at Home Care Solutions today. We serve all of the Tri-Cities areas.  Call 509-627-8575

Caregiver in Sunnyside WA: Manage Family Strife

Even the closest families don’t get along every day and in every situation. Caregiving can bring out some big emotions in everyone and that gets to be a problem quickly.

 

Family Dynamics Get Complicated While Caregiving

Family dynamics can always be complicated, but they become even more so when caregiving is involved. Everyone wants to have a say in what is going on, even if they don’t always fully understand the impacts of their opinions. To further complicate things, you may be the only one on the scene. That gives you a perspective that others don’t have.

 

How You Communicate Matters

Old relationship issues can affect how you communicate with the other people in your family, especially about complicated situations. So your tone of voice and how you phrase things really matters. It’s important to be as open and honest as you can and to do your best to avoid using intonation and phrasing that is likely to negatively affect the people you’re talking to. If you’re using blame and other tools, those are going to backfire.

 

Let it Go

Whatever issues you’ve experienced in the past with your family members, you have to let them go. Even if you can’t let them go permanently, you do need to do your best to let them go when you’re dealing with issues related to caregiving. You may have to decide how important those issues are when compared to your senior’s current situation.

 

Focus on Your Strengths

Everyone has their strengths. In the case of your other family members, some of them may be able to handle tasks for your senior that are difficult for you or that land outside your personal strengths. When you focus on what you do well and allow others to do the same, they can feel empowered by that and therefore feel less prickly when it comes to talking about the overall big picture.

 

Take Care of Yourself

If you’re not making sure that you’re in a good space emotionally and physically, all of this is going to be so much more difficult. Take time away from caregiving by hiring elderly care providers to be there in your place. They’ll be able to fit in seamlessly and you’ll be able to take the time that you need.

Some family members just want to fight about caregiving issues. For many, it’s a way to cope with the emotions that your senior’s situation brings up for them. You won’t be able to control or manage the reactions of other people, but you can control what you do in response.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring a Caregiver in Sunnyside, WA, please contact the caring staff at Home Care Solutions today. We serve all of the Tri-Cities areas.  Call 509-627-8575

Home Care in Prosser WA: Help with Memory Trouble

 

One of the most irritating issues your senior might be facing could be problems with her memory. Some of these techniques can help her to strengthen her memory while also helping her to make sure that nothing is falling through the cracks.

 

Lists and Notes Work Well

Lists and notes are a great way for you and your senior to communicate with each other through the day. They also stay right where you left them so that your elderly family member can refer to them as often as she needs to throughout the day. It’s a good idea to establish a set area, such as a spot on the kitchen counter, which is reserved for notes and lists. That way you both know where to look for them.

 

Use a Big Calendar

A big wall calendar is an easy way for your elderly family member to orient herself to the date and the day of the week each day. Using a calendar with big squares allows you both to include as many notes as you need to. Determine a way to mark off each day in a way that leaves the information visible so that your senior can see at a glance what the current day is.

 

A Smartphone and Alarms Can Help

Lots of aging adults are reluctant to use smartphones because they seem complicated. But having a smartphone and using the alarms throughout the day can help to remind your elderly family member when she needs to do certain things, such as take specific medications or do something else that she can’t put off. You can set alarms and reminders to recur so that your senior doesn’t have to worry about setting them each day.

 

Journaling Helps Her Retain Information

A small notebook in which your elderly family member jots down notes about her day or about something important can help more than she might think. Taking the time to write down an important instruction helps to move that information from her short-term memory to longer-term memory, plus she has a written record to refer to.

Daily routines help so much with memory issues because your elderly family member just does what comes next in her routine. They relieve a great deal of stress and anxiety. Elder care providers can help you and your senior to work out a routine that works well and that hits all the necessary points for her.

 

If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Home Care in Prosser, WA, please contact the caring staff at Home Care Solutions today. We serve all of the Tri-Cities areas.  Call 509-627-8575

Homecare in Grandview WA: Gluten-free Eating Plan

With Gluten-Free Diet Awareness Month coming around in November, now might be the time to talk to your aging family member about reducing or even eliminating the gluten in her diet. Most people eat more gluten-containing foods than they realize and there are some possible benefits to going gluten-free even temporarily.

 

Gluten and Inflammation Are Closely Linked

Inflammation is behind a lot of health issues, especially for older adults. Even if your senior doesn’t think that any parts of her body are battling inflammation, she might be surprised. Ailments like arthritis are closely linked to inflammation. Anything that can help to reduce inflammation is something that your senior might want to try out, even if it’s not something that she sticks with long term.

 

Gastrointestinal Issues Might Subside

People with celiac disease may have dramatic and painful reactions to gluten in their diet. Your senior may not have celiac disease, but she may find that by reducing the gluten that she’s eating, she may see a change in how her gastrointestinal tract functions. Along with reducing inflammation in the gut, removing gluten can remove something that has been a minor irritant for your elderly family member. This doesn’t have to be a permanent change, but your elderly family member may find that she has fewer gut issues.

 

Some People with Gluten-free Diets Think Better

Brain fog is annoying and can show up for a variety of reasons. In simplest terms, brain fog is simply having a difficult time thinking clearly or even focusing. Your senior might find that by adhering to a gluten-free diet even temporarily can help to reduce the experiences that she has with fuzzy thinking.

 

Nutritional Content in Meals Might Increase

When you take gluten-containing products out of your senior’s diet, you make way for other nutrients to come to the forefront. She may start eating a different variety of foods that allow her body to rebuild deficiencies that maybe were subtly impacting her health. Talk to your elderly family member’s doctor about what types of foods she should consider eating while she’s going gluten-free.

Making the switch to gluten-free eating can be an intimidating process for anyone, but especially for your aging family member. Hiring senior care providers to take over the complicated parts, like making sure that everything is actually gluten-free, can help her to simply enjoy this new way of eating and what it ca

 

If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Homecare in Grandview, WA, please contact the caring staff at Home Care Solutions today. We serve all of the Tri-Cities areas.  Call 509-627-8575

Caregiver in Benton City WA: Senior Falls

5 Things That Can Make Seniors Fall

According to the National Council on Aging, one in four adults in the United States who are age 65 or older fall each year. And, every 19 minutes an older adult dies because of a fall. Because of the danger of falls and their prevalence, it’s important to understand what contributes to falls since it may help you to prevent a fall in your older family member.

#1: Weakened Muscles

Muscles tend to get weaker as people age. This results in a lack of support for the body and can also affect balance. Weak muscles also make it more difficult to do some daily tasks, which may also lead to a fall. In addition to normal muscle changes that come with age, older adults often do not get enough exercise to help maintain muscle mass.

Home care can help seniors to keep their muscles stronger by encouraging them to be more physically active. Home care providers can involve older adults in physical activities around the house or drive them to exercise classes.

 

#2: Chronic Illness

Many of the chronic illnesses that occur in older adults make falls more likely. Conditions like diabetes, arthritis, Parkinson’s disease, and others can affect strength and balance. People with more than one chronic condition have an even greater risk of falling.

Home care providers can help manage chronic illnesses by reminding seniors to take their medication and driving them to medical appointments.

 

#3: Medications

Many medications have dizziness as a side effect. In addition, the way the body metabolizes medicines changes as people get older, which can make them stay in the body longer or interact with other medications.

Home care can watch for signs of dizziness and allow the senior to sit until it passes. They can also help them to get safely to a place where they can sit or lie down.

 

#4: Problems with Vision and Hearing

Not being able to see or hear well can lead to falls. Poor vision makes it harder for seniors to see what is coming as they walk, such as uneven surfaces. Problems with hearing may make it harder to hear someone or something coming up behind them, causing them to startle.

Home care can help seniors with vision and hearing problems to navigate safely. They can lend a steadying arm and warn the older adult about upcoming obstacles.

 

#5: Environmental Factors

There are many things around the home that can lead to falls, such as unnecessary clutter that may cause the senior to trip. Uneven surfaces, lack of handrails, and slippery floors are also a problem.

Home care providers can help with some environmental factors in the home. They can keep the house tidy so that there is nothing for the senior to trip over. They can also remove throw rugs that slip or can cause tripping.

 

If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring a Caregiver in Benton City, WA, please contact the caring staff at Home Care Solutions today. We serve all of the Tri-Cities areas.  Call 509-627-8575

Sources
Nhsinform.scot
Nia.nih.gov
Healthinaging.org
Ncoa.org