Mazel Tov to Gentle Home Services and CJE Senior Life as they celebrate a 10-year partnership.
Since 1972, CJE SeniorLife has enhanced the lives of older adults and their families through a comprehensive network that includes housing, health care, community services, health and wellness education, life enrichment programs and applied research. Gentle Home Services has been one of their preferred home care providers for the past 10 years providing quality professional caregivers to support the lives of older adults in their residence or one of the CJE communities, adult day or The Friend Center.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Care Services in Deerfield IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
Balancing work responsibilities and life responsibilities might be something that is literally keeping you up at night. No matter how much you do for each aspect of your life, you probably feel as if it just isn’t enough. What you need is a plan and some help.
Look at the Reality of Your Situation
It might help to take out a piece of paper and list out your responsibility. You might also find that spending a few days or a week making a time map helps you to see where your time and your energy go during the week. This gives you a way to really investigate the reality of your situation and where you’re most out of balance. Don’t worry about doing anything with this just yet because you’re still investigating. You need more information first.
List out Your Potential Resources
Where can you turn for help? You might have other family members who could pitch in and help more and you might have options available through your employer. Investigate what is available through your employee assistance program. Another option you might have overlooked is hiring home care providers. They can free up your time in regards to caregiving so that you can devote more time and energy to work when you need to be doing so.
Make a Flexible Plan
When you’ve got your time mapping and your resources together, you can start to see where you have gaps and where you need to adjust what you’re doing. Home care services can help you to fill those gaps so that they’re not taking over. Remember, though, that whatever plan you make needs to be flexible. Life has a way of changing things up on you when you least expect it.
Don’t Forget about Yourself
Do not leave yourself out of your equation. You have a responsibility to yourself to participate in your own self-care. If you’re not making self-care a priority, all the plans in the world are not going to give you what you’re missing. Life and work balance can only balance out when you’re a part of that math.
Few situations in life truly are “this or that.” You may have a great many more options than you realize to help you to balance your job with being a caregiver. Take a deep breath and look for ways to adapt your plans to help them work for you more effectively.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Care Services in Lake Forest IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
When your senior doesn’t want to move and the budget doesn’t allow you to completely redo her home, you have to look for home improvements that make a big difference quickly.
These ideas can do just that.
Handrails are inexpensive and you can install them anywhere that you can find the wall space. Make sure that if you’re installing them yourself that you do so with the proper anchors or that you install them directly into wall studs. Put handrails in the bathroom, in long hallways, and anywhere else your senior might have difficulty. Talk to your senior about where she’d like to have a handrail. Her answer might be one you didn’t think of and might turn out to be an essential spot.
Swapping Traditional Versions for Walk-in Tubs
Traditional styles of tubs and even shower stalls involve forcing your senior to raise her leg up and over an obstacle. While that might be fine when she’s a little younger and has better balance, it can be a big problem once her balance becomes more of an issue. Walk-in tubs and showers are a lot easier for her to access and can significantly decrease the likelihood of her falling. They’ve become a lot more affordable, too, which can make the idea even more appealing.
Improving Lighting Everywhere
Better lighting is always a solid answer for your aging family member. As her eyesight changes, she might find that brighter lights help her to continue to be able to see. Take a look at where existing lighting fixtures and lamps are located. Where possible, swap out lower wattage bulbs for brighter ones, including LED bulbs. If the fixtures can’t support brighter lighting, swap them out for newer ones that can handle the newer types of brighter bulbs.
Installing a Stair Lift
Installing a stair lift is a little bit more of an investment, but it’s one that can be worth it. Stairs can be extremely dangerous for someone who has balance issues, even if there’s a sturdy handrail in place. If your senior has had some close calls or even avoids her stairs because she’s afraid of them, a stair lift can be the answer you want. Stair lifts also help your elderly family member to conserve some of her energy to devote to other tasks and activities.
Home improvements can be life-changing for your aging adult. It’s also important that she has the support of people she and you can trust when she needs help. Home care services providers are there for your senior to support and to help her in all the ways that she needs.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Care Services in Glenview IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
Thank you so much for your card. My uncle was a great, loyal, dedicated honest man. We was loved by everyone who knew him.
I thank you for your help in taking care of him when he needed help after his stays in the hospital. The caregiver that you sent him because his friend. Your office staff was also very helpful to us, with any questions or concerns we had.
Thank you so sincerely,
Mary, former client's wife
If you or an aging loved one are considering Caregiver Services in Deerfield IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
Thank you so much for sending a caregiver to care for my mother in law. N was kind, gentle, thorough, pleasant and caring.
We would be happy to have her come again!
NG from Lake Forest
If you or an aging loved one are considering Caregiver Services in Lake Forest IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
The entire office took a break recently to pack food boxes for Feed My Starving Children. "It was a really fun team-building event for a worthwhile cause. We look forward to participating again", said owner Michael Berliant.
"We were so impressed with the entire operation and efficiency of how their program works", said Susan Scatchell, Director Business Development. "At the end of the day, it was quite overwhelming how many children will benefit".
Pictured here is Michael Berliant, Lorena Nehring, Susan Scatchell and Deb Sweet.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Homecare Services in Deerfield IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
We are delighted to have a guest blogger this month. Dr. Joy Poskozim has been making dental house calls for over ten years all over Chicagoland and Cook County.
Enjoy her article on CAREGIVING + ORAL CARE = A HAPPY MOUTH.
A home-bound patient’s daughter wanted me to make her mother a new denture. “My boys can’t stand to look at their grandma without teeth, and I want them to have a relationship with her.”
Maria had lost her last denture. Her family realized it was gone when they asked her caregiver to put her denture in for Sunday family dinner. They didn’t know Maria had taken it out at some point during the week and the caregiver had yet to find it. Taking care of Maria had its challenges. She had Alzheimer’s, was nonverbal, and was also diabetic. These medical conditions made it difficult to create a menu that was nutritious as well as easy to chew; healthy, but also low in carbohydrates and sugar. Her diet options would definitely increase with a full complement of teeth.
I examined Maria. She had a pleasant smile on her face, allowing me to see her entire mouth, lower teeth, and her tongue, which she easily stuck out for me upon command. She had minor dry mouth, a side effect of the medications she was taking. In fact, 85% of all medications for chronic conditions have dry mouth as a side effect, worsening the longer these medications are taken. Fortunately the caregiver and family were already on it, making sure she drank water from her sippy cup on a regular basis and with meals. I recommended adding an OTC dry mouth rinse that was pH neutral so it was swallowable, just in case she forgot she wasn’t drinking water. Dry mouth rinses/lozenges/sprays are great before meals to help with swallowing. I also encouraged using the dry mouth rinse at two important times of the day: before bed and when she woke. Before bed to help keep her saliva in her mouth and not evaporate, and then again as soon as she got up to jump-start her saliva production in the morning.
I then cleaned her lower teeth, noticing that she did not know what to do with her toothbrush at the end. Even with prompts, Maria would not put her toothbrush to her mouth to brush her teeth. This was discussed with the family and the caregiver, as I showed them how to brush her lower teeth. Teethbrushing seniors is exactly the same way we should brush our teeth: imagine the toothbrush cut in half length-wise. Half the toothbrush goes on the gums, half on the teeth. So we want to raise our toothbrushing higher for our upper teeth, dropping the brush for our lower ones. Why? All oral bacteria that causes gum disease (and tooth mobility and gum swelling and recession) live at the gumline between the teeth and the gums. Toothbrushing disrupts where they live, not allowing them to grow/multiply/divide/increase inflammation/decrease plaque. I also explained dry mouth + plaque (tartar) production = bad breath. Bad breath is a great sign for oral health neglect. The better and longer the brushing, the healthier our mouths. In fact, the American Dental Association trademarked “Two Minutes Two Times A Day” for how often we should be brushing our teeth. The average American only brushes for 42 seconds on average. As Maria’s disease moved along, it would become more difficult to brush her teeth for two minutes, which is why it was so important to put this method into place now while the caregiver and family still could.
Making a denture takes about five appointments, at which Maria was incredibly docile and helpful. I had noticed at about the third appointment that her mouth did not seem as dry as before. Sometimes the OTC dry mouth products do not work, so one has to be prescribed. The prescription saliva substitutes do not have generics since they are all still so new, so they get to be expensive. I also noticed the gum margins around her teeth were not as red or puffy, nor did she have any bad breath.
By the fifth and last appointment, Maria’s daughter and caregiver were there to watch me insert her new upper denture. It fit beautifully. Maria smiled and laughed in response to them applauding Maria’s smile. She then got up and started to walk around the living room. All three of us watched her as she saw balloons that were from Maria’s daughter’s birthday party. Maria instantly took out her upper denture, put it on the table, pick up the balloons, and brought them to me. “What just happened?” the caregiver asked. “Maria is offering me payment for her new denture. You will have to make sure she keeps it in during the day. I may need to come back to adjust the denture if she refuses to put them in. It may be her way of telling you that it hurts. There will probably be some kind of redness or sore showing me where to adjust. There is a topical medicine to help as well.” Both of them just nodded.
Maria was fortunate to have a family and full-time caregiver so willing and eager to help Maria with her mouth. They understood the need for oral care in order for Maria to thrive. Unfortunately, if they had dismissed the idea of getting her a new denture, they may also have missed the fact that she had plaque buildup, potentially causing severe dry mouth and an extreme possibility of additional tooth loss. The more teeth we have the better chance we have of surviving and thriving, due to a variety of foods that are so important in all human diets, no matter the age. Pureed foods are obviously necessary for those who can no longer swallow or have the capacity to chew. There are even cookbooks for pureed foods now! But there are plenty of studies that show the more teeth we have, the longer we live.
The bacteria that causes gingivitis -- porphyromonas gingivalis – has been shown to grow in plaque deposits in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients. More than half of bacteria that causes bacterial pneumonia is oral bacteria. The better we treat our and our loved ones’ mouths, the better we all live. Here’s to smiling!
Dr. Joy Poskozim has been making dental house calls for over ten years all over Chicagoland and Cook County. From oral hygiene visits to extractions – and everything in between – please contact Dr. Joy at (773) 736-7767 or www.joyfuldentalcare.com for all oral care needs.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Caregiver Services in Skokie IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
Gentle Home Care sponsors a Memory Cafe on the second Thursday of the month. June's program is "What's New in Memory Loss and Alzheimer's Research". Steve Satek, President and Founder of Great Lakes Clinical Trials will lead the discussion and answer questions about the latest advancements in Alzheimer's disease and memory loss research.
The Great Lakes team will also perform free genetic testing for the APOE gene via a cheek swab.
Light refreshments will be served.
Date: June 13, 2019
Time: 4-5:30 pm
Location: The Friend Center, 1601 Lake Cook Road in Deerfield.
RSVP to SScatchell@gentlehomecare.com or call 847-323-7428.
Click Here for More Information
If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Care Services in Deerfield IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
It seems like every couple of months a new listeria outbreak is announced. When food items are recalled, you know to purge the kitchen of the potentially contaminated food, but you may not really know what listeria is or how it can affect your aging relative’s health. Gaining a better understanding of listeria could help you to spot the signs of listeria infection in your elderly family member and help them to avoid it.
What is Listeria?
Listeria is a kind of bacteria that infects people through consuming contaminated foods. When a person has a listeria infection, it is called listeriosis. The most common way that people get listeriosis is by eating deli meats that weren’t processed correctly or through unpasteurized dairy products. In fact, a recent listeria outbreak that killed one person and made eight others ill was traced back to deli meats and cheeses that were sold in four states.
Although listeriosis is rarely serious for healthy individuals, older adults who have compromised immune systems are at a greater risk for complications that can lead to death. Being treated for listeriosis early can reduce the chances of developing complications.
Symptoms of Listeria Infection
It can take a long time after eating a contaminated food for symptoms to appear. Usually symptoms start within 3 days, but it can take a month or more. Common symptoms of listeria include:
* Muscle aches.
If the infection spreads to the nervous system, your aging relative may also experience:
* Stiff neck.
* Balance problems.
* Being less alert.
Preventing Listeria Infection
Listeria infections can be prevented by taking precautions with the food that your aging relative eats. Some ways to avoid listeria are:
Clean Surfaces and Hands: Before preparing food, make sure you or the older adult washes their hands thoroughly using soap and water. Wash countertops, cutting boards, and utensils after preparing foods.
Wash Vegetables: All raw vegetables should be scrubbed before using.
Cook Food Thoroughly: Use a meat thermometer to check that all meats and poultry are cooked through.
As an extra precaution, the Mayo Clinic recommends that those with weakened immune systems avoid eating or be extra careful with the following foods:
* Soft and Mexican-style cheeses that have not been made using pasteurized milk.
* Hot dogs, lunch meats, and deli meats.
* Meat spreads and pates.
* Refrigerated smoked seafood.
Elderly care can help your older family member to prevent a listeria infection. Elderly care providers can prepare meals for the elderly person, following proper safety measures to clean produce and cooking surfaces. Elderly care providers can also help seniors to avoid foods that are more likely to be contaminated with bacteria.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Elderly Care Services in Evanston IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
Our very own Susan Scatchell, Business Development Director was recently quoted in Considerable.com article entitled "When home health aides cross the line on privacy". Caregivers often start to feel part of the family, but what happens when they start posting pictures of your parents on Instagram or other social media?
The complete article can be found here.
Considerable.com is for individuals who are redefining what it means to grow older. They provide relevant content about the the aging process including topics on retirement planning, second careers, healthcare, family, caregiving, travel, relationships, and fitness.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Health Care Services in Deerfield IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.