Stroke Symptoms in the Elderly Require Acting FAST

Learn common stroke symptoms in the elderly and the importance of acting FAST.
Learn common stroke symptoms in the elderly and the importance of acting FAST.

Stroke, according to the National Stroke Association, is listed as the fifth leading cause of death in America, with upwards of 800,000 people experiencing a stroke on an annual basis. This suggests that every 40 seconds, somebody somewhere in America has a stroke. And every four minutes, someone dies from a stroke.

As a family caregiver, it’s important to familiarize yourself with common stroke symptoms in the elderly so that you can quickly seek medical care for your loved one if needed. The more quickly you access assistance, the better the chance the individual will live through the stroke. Stroke warning signs might include sudden onset of:

  • Feeling numb or weak in the leg, face, or arm – specifically on one side of the body
  • Confusion, trouble with understanding or speaking
  • Blurry vision or trouble seeing
  • Difficulties with walking, feeling lightheaded, loss of balance or coordination
  • Major headache with no known cause

If you detect these signs of a stroke in someone, remember to act F.A.S.T.

Face: Ask the person to smile and observe if one side seems to droop.

Arms: Ask the individual to raise both arms. Does one arm seem to droop downward?

Speech: Ask the individual to repeat a very simple sentence. When he/she does, observe if speech slurs or if the person is struggling to put together words appropriately.

Time: Time is crucial! If you see any of the warning signs above, call 911 right away or make sure the person gets to the hospital as soon as possible!

At Home Care Solutions, providers of award-winning in home care in Kennewick and the surrounding area, we pride ourselves on providing professional, highly-trained caregivers to assist seniors in recovering from a stroke in the comfort and familiarity of home. We provide a broad variety of senior home care services that can be customized to meet the unique needs of each client. Just a few of the ways we can help include:

  • Friendly companionship and engaging conversations
  • Nutritious meal planning and preparation, with adherence to any special dietary needs
  • Personal care assistance such as showering, using the bathroom, and dressing
  • Help getting around the house, ensuring fall hazards are eliminated
  • Light housekeeping and laundry
  • Encouragement to engage in physician-approved exercise programs
  • And much more

For more information about our senior care management services and our in home care in Kennewick and the surrounding communities, contact us at (509) 627-8575.

When to Bring in an Aging Life Care Professional

We all, naturally, want the best for those we love. But in some instances when families are involved in a senior loved one’s care, opinions about what is best for the person may clash. It can cause family members to argue with each other instead of working together. This is just one instance when it’s a good idea to seek the assistance of a professional third party, like an aging life care professional (also known as a care manager), who knows what older adults need for long-term care and how to accomplish receiving this care.

Aging life care professionals have the skills needed to guide families in determining what type of care a senior loved one requires and how to most effectively coordinate long-term care. They can also serve as mediators when family members disagree when attempting to plan care for their loved one.

Consider an aging life care professional as a “professional family member,” typically a nurse or social worker, with expertise in the resources that are available to help seniors with a variety of needs and challenges. Just several of the many ways they can help include:

  • Working with families through difficult conversations and problems
  • Addressing emotional concerns
  • Collaborating with other care professionals, including the senior’s medical team
  • Visiting the home to assess needs and recommend appropriate services
  • Developing short- and long-term care plans and goals
  • Providing relief to overburdened family caregivers

Make sure you obtain the answers to the following questions from potential aging life care professionals:

  • Are you licensed?
  • How much experience do you have as an aging life care professional?
  • What happens if I have an emergency after-hours?
  • Do you have references I can talk to?
  • Will your agency also help with home care services?

Aging Life Care Professionals and Home Care 

One of the perks of using aging life care professionals to coordinate care is that they are trained to work with many different types of people and organizations. An aging life care professional can help coordinate medical care, work with lawyers, and coordinate in-home care services. Home care agencies like Home Care Solutions who work with aging life care professionals further ease stress for families and improve quality of life in the home.

To learn more about Home Care Solutions, the experts in home care in Richland, WA, and nearby areas, and our aging life care professional services, contact us any time at (509) 627-8575. We offer a free in-home consultation to share more about how we can help in your particular circumstances.

How Care Coordination Is Key to Helping Older Parents Age at Home

Care coordination is a vital component to helping older parents age at home.

Ask most seniors if they would prefer to continue living at home, even if they are challenged by aging-related issues, and the answer in the majority of cases is a resounding “yes!” Having to move away from home, a place filled with so many memories, can be upsetting, even if a senior admits that it’s getting more difficult to manage. However, wanting to continue to be at home and having the ability to do so safely, all alone, are two different things. So what can you do? Even if you are a 24/7, around-the-clock family caregiver, you can’t do it all by yourself. You need help, and it could be that care coordination is the solution you need when helping older parents age at home. 

Many families find that preparing for home care services requires the expertise of a professional who fully understands all of the options. And it’s true — appropriate care coordination from an aging care specialist will help everyone involved feel more organized and secure.

Who Can Help?

Many seniors can benefit from help with several aspects of life, such as meal preparation, transportation to and from medical appointments, taking medications, and conducting the routine activities of daily living. Trying to coordinate all of these tasks can be challenging for a family caregiver. What many people don’t understand is that home care agencies, like Home Care Solutions, can help identify, locate, and coordinate all of the aspects of effective care at home. They can even uncover recommendations that may not have been considered at first for helping older parents.

Home care agencies have resources and contacts that are incredibly helpful for families who are in the middle of planning for long-term care. Our experienced staff and caregivers are always happy to help families in determining the right care plan for a loved one and assisting with all of his or her care needs. Our care plans are always customized to each individual and can include a broad range of services, such as:

  • Personal care (showering, dressing, etc.)
  • Planning and preparing healthy and appetizing meals
  • Providing friendly companionship 
  • Light housekeeping and laundry
  • Running errands
  • Transportation and accompaniment 
  • And others 

Call us at (509) 627-8575 to learn about our in-home care and care coordination services. As the leading provider of at home care in Richland, WA, and surrounding areas, we’re here with the resources and answers you need, any time.

Celebrate National Senior Independence Month by Showing Your Dad How Elder Care Aids Independence

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

Outdoor Safety is Important for Seniors Aging at Home

You’re happy your parents want to age at home. You’ve taken precautions inside. They have grab bars now. There are sturdy rails and non-slip rugs on the wood floors. What about outside? According to the Fall Prevention Center of Excellence, 23 percent of falls happen in the yard.

It’s not just the falls that put seniors at risk outside. Fires started by grills or fire pits and attacks by animals and insects are also dangers. Outside safety is just as important as indoor safety.

 

Put Screens Around Spaces Under Decks and Porches

To keep hornets and bees from building homes under a deck or porch, staple pet-proof screening around all open sides of a deck or porch. For a decorative touch, you can nail lattice over the screen. It will keep insects and animals out.

 

Inspect Decking and Patio Tiles

Keep an eye on the patio tiles and decking. If a deck board is rotting or warped, it could pose a safety issue. Pull it out and replace it. If multiple boards are rotting, it might be time to replace the deck. Patio tiles may raise out of place as the foundation settles or is shifted by frozen ground in the winter. If that happens, level tiles that are sunken or raised higher than the rest.

 

Trim Branches and Cut Down Dead Trees

Keep branches on trees and shrubs trimmed and away from the house. You don’t want a branch to break a window on a windy day. Trees against the foundation can cause problems as the roots grow and push against basement walls.

If there are dead trees, they could topple and put your parents’ safety at risk. They also draw carpenter ants, so you want them taken care of before they target and damage wood framing in and around your parents’ house.

 

Create Safe Areas to Garden and Walk

Mobility issues can make it hard to go outside. If your parent has a sloped or an uneven yard, create safe walking areas. A stone walkway or patio with raised garden beds surrounding it will provide opportunities to be outside in the fresh air. Benches along a path or on a patio provide a place to rest.

When your mom and dad spend time outside, you can hire elderly care services to offer a level of supervision. Caregivers can walk with your parents. They can lend an arm for balance. They can make sure your parents put on sunscreen, wear a hat, and avoid heat exhaustion. Call an elderly care agency to learn more.

 

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

 

Sources:
Stopfalls.org