It’s the season of gift-giving and money-spending and what seems like a never ending list of people to shop for and things to do. If you or your senior who is receiving home care are looking for ways to cut down on the spending or give more meaningful gifts this year, we have a list of some ways to help you achieve that, while still celebrating with your loved ones like usual.
Using old or new photographs of your senior or their loved ones is a great and unique way to make memorable gifts that will be cherished by members of your family forever. You can put them into an ornament, a gift like a mug or a coaster, or just frame some special family photos that your senior hasn’t seen in a while but that would be sure to make them smile.
Use your talents
Does your senior have any special talents that could be used to make personal gifts for friends and family this season? If Grandma or Grandpa who are receiving home care enjoy knitting or crocheting, drawing or painting, woodworking or any other special craft or hobby, help them come up with ideas on how they can use their talents to make cost-saving and special gifts to give to the family this year.
If you like the traditional way of gift buying and giving, but are afraid that the spending limit gets to be too much, go ahead and be proactive by letting the family know that this year there is a spending limit. Often seniors are on a fixed or limited budget, but still love the idea of showering their loved ones with holiday gifts. By setting a limit, they can still be involved in the joy of giving gifts with a little less strain on their wallet.
Another way to still give gifts but save a considerable amount of money is to draw names. Instead of every person in the family buying gifts for one another, which can quickly add up in the spending department, you can put everyone’s names in a bowl and take turns drawing them out. When you draw a name, that’s the only person you buy for, so instead of receiving numerous gifts, each person receives one personalized gift just for them. You can keep it a secret or announce the names as you draw.
Nix gifts altogether
If buying gifts isn’t especially important to you, or you just can’t afford it this year, consider making a fun guideline this year where everyone has to hand-make presents. These can be as simple as a hand-drawn or written card, a wreath for the window or door, or a book of coupons for things such as a shoulder massage, a home-cooked meal, or lunch with your senior or other family member.
Another idea is to do a family night in lieu of gift giving, where you can pick a theme such as movies and popcorn, baking together in the kitchen, or a game night. This way, the family gets to be together while making memories that will long outlast any gifts that would normally be given.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Care Services in Wilmette IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
With dementia, there are many side effects of the disease, that you may not be aware of. Learning more about dementia can help you to assist your loved one who has this disease. The more you know about dementia, the more you can be there for your loved one, as well.
One of the effects of dementia is complex attention. This is someone’s ability to keep focused, stay attentive, and be able to multitask. If your loved one isn’t able to do these things anymore, they could have dementia. This is something you should keep a close eye on, as distractibility could be a sign of many things. However, if they have lost their attentive skills and they have other effects of dementia, they might get diagnosed with this disease.
Executive functioning is someone’s ability to organize, plan, and to make important or even basic decisions. When you think about how your elderly loved one is doing, do you notice any issues with their decision-making skills? Have they become disorganized lately? Are they unable to make plans or stick to plans that are made for them? If you do notice issues with their executive functioning skills, they could have dementia.
If your elderly loved one does have dementia, they might experience memory-related issues. They may be unable to retain information. In addition, they may have issues with their short-term or long-term memory. Memory issues are very common in those who have dementia. If your elderly loved one has an elder care provider, have them look out for memory loss in your loved one, as well.
Do you notice that your elderly loved one can’t seem to find the right words to go in a given sentence? Maybe they mix words up that shouldn’t be said in a certain situation. They may not understand some of the things that are being said to them. These issues are common in those who have dementia.
Perceptual Motor Skill Issues
These skills are the ability to comprehend what is said and be able to translate things that are said into something meaningful. Is your elderly loved one still able to do this? If they aren’t they could have a dementia diagnosis.
Is your elderly loved one still able to understand and express their emotions? If they aren’t then they could have dementia. Pay attention to this. You might notice they have a difficult time verbally expressing their emotions. They may get angry or frustrated because of this, too.
These are some of the effects of dementia that you might notice in your elderly loved one. If these are effects that you notice, have them assessed by a doctor right away. The sooner they get a diagnosis, the sooner they can get the help that they need.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Elder Care Services in Arlington Heights IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
Are you concerned about your elderly loved one? Maybe you think they are having issues with their memory or they may have taken a fall. If you have concerns about the well-being of your aging loved one, it might be time to do something about it. It might be time to hire home care services for your loved one. If you aren’t sure whether it is the right time to hire a home care services provider to help take care of your loved one, hopefully, this guide will find you well.
Agitation or Wandering
If someone has dementia, it is likely they will be agitated a lot and may even start wandering. This generally happens when someone has sundowning. This is confusion later in the day. It can cause them to become agitated. Someone should be available to help care for your loved one. They will need someone to manage their symptoms and monitor them on a regular basis. A home care services provider could do this.
Transfers and Personal Care Issues
Many elderly people are unable to get up out of bed on their own. They may need help transferring from one place to the next. If you are unavailable to do this for them, you may need to hire a home care services provider to help with these transfers. In addition, there are many elderly people who need help with personal care such as bathing, medications, and dressing. If you want to make sure your loved one stays safe, you will want them to have help with these things. A home care services provider can give them the help they need.
It is also important to help prevent falls in your elderly loved one. When someone ages, their bones often get weaker. They may also experience balance issues. This can greatly increase the risk of falling. You can help to prevent falls in your loved one by hiring a home care provider to assist them in getting around. The home care services provider can also make sure all rugs in the home are secured and that your loved one wears slip-proof socks or slippers.
Cooking and Eating
Home care services providers can also help your loved one with cooking and eating. Many elderly people have issues with cooking. They may forget how to make meals, have no interest in cooking, or not make themselves nutritious enough meals. In addition, many elderly people have eating issues. They may need help feeding themselves. If this is the case, a home care provider can assist your loved one in the ways that they need.
Your aging loved one may need a companion. If you can’t be there enough for your loved one, you can hire a home care provider to be there for them. Having a companion can positively impact your loved one’s life in many ways.
These are some of the best reasons to hire home care services for your aging loved one. Make the best decision for your loved one today.
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.
It’s not uncommon for family caregivers to have struggles with their senior parents who require daily care with things such as their medication, medical procedures, grooming and personal hygiene, and help with house work.
Seniors who live in their homes and wish to remain there can have difficulties with role reversal and accepting help for things that they once could do completely unassisted such as showering, getting dressed, preparing meals and feeding themselves, or even driving.
Some seniors may be in denial about the level of care that they need, may be embarrassed or have feelings of shame, or may have or be developing cognitive impairments such as dementia which keeps them from fully understanding the severity of the situation at hand.
No matter the reason, it can be extremely frustrating for family caregivers when they feel like they have to fight with their senior parent on a daily basis to get them to accept help or to do the simple things that they need to be doing to keep up with their health and hygiene.
If you have been considering hiring the help of senior care to provide the assistance of professional caregivers who can care for your senior parent, it’s a fantastic option for many families and may help alleviate some of the feelings of hostility that you may be experiencing.
Sometimes, you may find that your senior parent needed someone that is not related to help them with the more personal aspects of their care. And sometimes, the advice and opinion of trained caregivers that can act as a third party is enough to convince your senior that they need to give up a little control and that accepting help is in everyone’s best interest.
While senior care can be a huge relief for families struggling to keep up with the daily demands of their senior parent, in the meantime there are 2 things that you can try at home to see if you can make the family caregiver role a little easier on you both, such as:
Giving them a choice. If your stubborn senior parent is having trouble accepting help, it may be due to a feeling of having no control over their life, or certain important aspects of it. Try allowing them a few choices in their daily routine, such as asking them what they want to eat, or what time they want to shower and change, giving them 2 or 3 options so that they feel like they are more in control.
Compromise. It might sound hard, but trying to think of a mutually beneficial compromise for certain situations you and your senior struggle with might help accomplish your goals. If showering is a huge task and something you regularly fight about, come up with a schedule that might not be exactly what you want, but is more than what your senior is currently content with.
With a little forethought, along with the consideration of hiring senior care providers to come in and help, you and your senior can improve your routine and be on your way to spending your time with them in a more productive and less frustrating atmosphere.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Senior Care Services in Skokie IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
Most people are aware that there are people in the world who have no issues with taking advantage of and specifically targeting senior citizens using fraudulent tactics or schemes. When a senior is home alone for periods of time, they may be especially vulnerable.
Why are seniors targeted so much more frequently?
According to research, those over the age of 65 are more likely to have taken a financial loss due to a scam than those that are in their 40’s, but why?
Seniors are more likely to have excellent credit, to have a savings build up, and to own their home, which are all reasons that make them more susceptible to becoming the victims of fraud.
They also are less likely to report fraudulent activity, whether it’s due to shame or embarrassment, confusion about what happened or where and how to report it, memory loss, or the fact that they are just unaware that they have even been the victim of fraud in the first place.
Here are some practical tips for protecting your senior parent or loved one from becoming another unfortunate victim of fraud.
Invest in a shredder.
It is important to protect your senior’s personal information and one way to do so is by purchasing a shredder. You can find small, inexpensive, and portable machines and we recommend keeping it in an area where it will be more likely to be used, such as wherever your senior opens their mail or near the trash receptacle. Show your senior how to use it and err on the side of caution, shredding anything that isn’t of importance but has their name, address, or any other sensitive personal information.
If your senior spends time at home alone, and especially if they are experiencing any cognitive impairments such as dementia, hiring a home care company to provide the assistance of caregivers is a way to be sure that your senior is safe at home from people that want to take advantage of them. A home care aide can make sure that any unsolicited visitors don’t gain access or information from your senior and they can also monitor any phone calls that are made or received by them.
Take over finances.
Another way to be on the front lines against elder fraud is to be active with their finances. Taking control of any checkbooks or credit cards, and having your name added to their bank accounts might be one way to help prevent money from being used in ways it shouldn't. It’s a good idea to regularly monitor your senior’s bank accounts so that you can have an idea of incoming and outgoing funds and can catch any fraudulent activity right away.
Talk about it.
Don’t forget to talk to your senior about identity fraud and tactics that are used against the elderly to gain access to their information and funds. Explain why they need to be careful and tell them that you are looking out for their best interests as they get help with their home care.
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.
Staying safe while your elder is walking is one of the most important parts of a new exercise routine. These tips can help, especially if your senior likes to walk outside.
The Right Gear Matters
Your senior doesn’t need special gear in order to get a walking workout in, but the right gear can help her to stay safe. The most important gear is the right shoes. They need to fit well, with no gaps or sliding. They should also have a non-slip sole and they need to be comfortable. Getting a blister or other type of sore could present much bigger problems. Other than that, comfortable clothing and items like hats that can protect her from the sun are also good ideas.
Lights, Signals, and Signs Can Keep Her Safe
There are so many different types of signals, signs, and lights that are out in the wild of the pedestrian landscape. Many of them are meant for drivers, but pedestrians need to understand them, too. Make sure that your senior is aware of where to safely cross the road and what all of the various signs and signals in her area might mean for her as she walks.
Make Sure She Looks Before Stepping
Your senior probably already knows to look both ways before she crosses any intersections, but depending on how fast she walks and whether she uses any assistive devices, she might need to look more than that. Encourage your elderly family member to take her time when she’s getting ready to venture off a curb or into a crosswalk. She needs to make sure that if there’s a light, she’s got the right of way. Even if she does, though, she needs to look at least twice before she proceeds.
A Walking Buddy Can Help
It might be a good idea for your senior to walk with a buddy every time she goes out. That might be something that you two can do together, but it’s not always possible. If she has a friend or neighbor to walk with, that can help. Some seniors don’t have anyone to walk with, though. That’s when elder care providers can fill in as excellent walking buddies. The bonus is that elder care aides understand your senior’s unique needs.
If a walking routine is new for your senior, make sure that you talk with her doctor about whether it’s a safe form of exercise for her. Starting out slowly and with shorter walks is a good idea, because she can always work up to more strenuous walking plans.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Elder Care Services in Chicago IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
Caregiving asks a great deal from you constantly. You may find that your social life is one of the first casualties, but other areas of your life can suffer, too. If you’re a sole caregiver, trying to keep doing everything completely on your own, that takes an even bigger toll on you. There’s help available, but you might have to look for it.
Asking for Help Makes You Stronger
Lots of people believe that asking for help means admitting weakness. But it doesn’t have to be that way at all. When you ask for help, you’re admitting that you need to reach out. It takes a lot of courage to do that and it can give you connections and tools that you didn’t think were available to you. All of that is valuable and can make you a stronger caregiver.
Other Caregivers Can Have Advice
When it’s just you, caregiving feels lonely and isolated. But when you meet other caregivers, people who are in situations just like yours, you realize that you don’t have to feel isolated and alone. The best way to meet other caregivers is to join a caregiver support group in your area and to attend meetings. You’ll be able to learn from their experience and share what is giving you the most trouble.
There Are Other Sources of Help, Too
There may be other forms of help available in your area, too. Start out by talking to your senior’s doctor about her needs and it’s possible that you can get a list of sources. Another option is to hire homecare providers. They have a wealth of experience that you can tap into on a daily basis. Homecare providers understand the types of challenges facing you and facing your senior.
Regular Respite Time Matters
Having regular time away matters immensely when you’re a sole family caregiver. It’s impossible to keep pushing yourself constantly, day in and day out, without any sort of break, you’re going to eventually reach a breaking point. Respite time gives you a chance to recharge yourself and to recover from everything that you go through on a daily basis.
Lots of caregivers don’t have a large family or a lot of friends on whom they can rely for caregiving assistance. But that doesn’t mean that you have to keep forging ahead completely alone. Often learning to ask for help is the most difficult part.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Homecare Services in Evanston IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
According to an article posted on the WebMD website, about 100 million people in the United States suffer from chronic pain of some sort. Many more have short-term aches and pains, too. Being in pain can significantly affect your aging relative’s quality of life. It can keep them from being able to perform daily activities and cause them to withdraw from social activities. Pain can also keep them from getting enough physical activity, which can negatively impact their health in other ways.
If your older family member has aches and pains, there are ways to help them feel better. Below are 5 things to try that can ease the pain.
#1: See a Doctor
If the older adult has not talked to a doctor about the pain they are experiencing, it’s important that they do so. Pain is an indicator that something is wrong and needs to be treated. The doctor may be able to prescribe medication to reduce pain or refer the senior to a physical therapist.
Exercising can reduce chronic pain because it strengthens muscles. Stronger muscles help to support joints damaged by arthritis. In addition, exercise increases blood flow around the body, which can help with healing. To get the best results from exercise, older adults should include both aerobic exercise and strength training in their routine.
#3: Improve Sleeping Position
Pain can keep your aging relative from sleeping well at night. A lack of sleep can then make them feel worse. By improving their body position while sleeping, seniors may be able to reduce their pain. Purchase some extra pillows to support the body. One of the most important things is to keep the neck in a neutral position. Avoid putting too many pillows under the head so that the neck is bent. It can also help people who sleep on their side to place a pillow between their knees. Those who sleep on their back may be able to relieve back pain by sleeping with a wedge under their knees to reduce pressure on the back.
#4: Use Over-the-Counter Pain Killers
Taking over-the-counter pain killers can reduce pain. However, it’s important that older adults talk to their doctor about which pain killers are right for them. Some kinds of over-the-counter medications can interact with prescription medications or should not be used if a person has certain conditions.
#5: Use Home Care Services
Home care services providers can assist with pain management in several ways. A home care services provider can remind the older adult to use medications recommended by the doctor. In addition, a home care services provider can give the senior a gentle massage to relieve pain. They can also take on household tasks, like cleaning and cooking, so that your older family member can rest and reduce the risk of aggravating the sore area more.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Care Services in Northbrook IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
All sunscreens are not created equal, but to know which one is best for their elderly relative, caregivers need to be able to read and understand the information on the label. Unfortunately, a study conducted in 2015 found that only about 43 percent of people who responded to a survey didn’t have a clear understanding of what SPF means. If you’re not sure how well you understand the information on sunscreen labels, learning more can ensure the one your elderly family member uses is right for them.
Below are the basic parts of a sunscreen label and what you need to know about each.
SPF stands for sun protection factor. It provides information about how much of the sun’s rays the sunscreen filters out. Sunscreen with an SPF of 15 filters out 93 percent of the sun’s rays. SPF 30 blocks 97 percent. The SPF can give caregivers some idea of how long their aging relative can stay out in the sun before a sunburn will begin. According to the skin cancer foundation, if the senior’s skin starts to get red in 20 minutes, using an SPF 30 sunscreen lets them stay outside 30 times longer. However, they also caution that those numbers are determined in a lab and not in real world situations. Sunscreen should be reapplied every 2 hours or sooner if the elderly adult has been swimming or sweating.
Waterproof or Water Resistant
If a sunscreen claims to be waterproof, don’t believe it. Sweat and water will eventually wash the sunscreen away. In fact, the FDA does not allow manufacturers to use “waterproof” on labels anymore. Instead, labels should use the terms “water resistant” and “very water resistant.” Sunscreen that is water resistant can last 40 minutes in the water before it needs to be reapplied. Very resistant sunscreen must be reapplied after 80 minutes in the water.
Caregivers should choose sunscreens that offer broad spectrum protection. That means the sunscreen protects against both UVA and UVB rays. Both of these kinds of rays can damage the skin and lead to skin cancer.
When reading the label of a bottle of sunscreen, caregivers may notice they use different kinds of active ingredients. There are two kinds of active ingredients used in sunscreens: physical barriers and chemical barriers. Physical barrier sunscreens are those that use zinc or zinc oxide. They are like a shield, physically blocking the rays of the sun from reaching the skin. They work well for people with sensitive skin. Chemical barrier sunscreens use oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate, octocrylene, homosalate, or octinoxate. They absorb rays from the sun before they can reach the skin. This kind of sunscreen is usually easier to rub into the skin and doesn’t leave the skin with a layer of white cream.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Elderly Care Services in Highland Park IL, contact the caring staff at Gentle Home Services. Call today (800) 860-9823.
AB called to report they had a terrific birthday lunch for their aunt today and our caregiver was WONDERFUL. The family is so thankful and couldn't have been happier with our services. They will plan to use us in the future when the needs arises.
Shared this with E and thank her for doing a lovely job.
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.