Flu isn't just an inconvenience, especially among the elderly population. For expert information on how caregivers can help their elders stay healthy and if possible avoid the flu, I reached out to Martie Moore, R.N., MAOM, CPHQ, who is Chief Nursing Officer, Medline Industries, Inc. for some answers.
Q. Martie, what steps should be taken short of hibernation to avoid getting the flu in the first place?
A. For caregivers at home, I would call for a modified hibernation strategy, meaning you need to modify your behaviors to help reduce your exposure risk.
Many dementia caregivers feel as though they are treading water just to avoid sinking under the often exhausting pressures associated with dementia care. But consciously changing your attitude can, with practice, significantly change how your days, and those of your loved one, unfold. Here are some tips to get started.
Something most of us take for granted is our ability to swallow. There are many things that can contribute to swallowing difficulties (dysphagia) including stroke, brain injury, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, ALS, oral cancer or problems with teeth or dentures. In some situations the symptoms are obvious, but in others a person may see gradual changes and not realize that the problems a person is having could be due to dysphagia.
Once you have reached your 70s, will you look back and thank your middle-aged self for spending another hour each day on social media rather than jogging around your neighborhood? According to new research, the answer is no: you’re more likely to wish that you’d had more self-discipline. A long-term study of more than 3,000 twins by researchers at the University of Helsinki found that midlife, moderately vigorous physical activity is associated with better cognition as we reach old age.
As people age, they are likely to find that balance issues, arthritis, neurological diseases, and other health problems become a threat to their quality of life. People facing these problems often find that being evaluated and treated by a physical therapist can be a significant step toward improvement in safety and mobility, or at least stabilization.
For many reasons, some identified and others still a mystery, women seem to be more at risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease than men are. A recent study, led by Dr. Laura Ekblad at Finland's University of Turku and Turku University Hospital, has discovered one physical issue that could be added to the list of Alzheimer's risks for women: insulin resistance. Insulin resistance, which is a hallmark of type 2 diabetes, was shown in tests to influence verbal fluency in women more than men.
When Tony Rovere was caring for his mother he felt lost when it came to finding resources for caregivers. Because of his experience, Tony eventually founded Stuff Seniors Need at www.stuffseniorsneed.com. The site is a terrific place to go if you want to find good cell phone plans for seniors, information about hearing aids or dentures, and information on most other products and services.
Now, Tony is launching the National Caregiver Relief Giveaway to assist caregivers throughout the United States. The top prize is a multi-position lift chair. It is free to enter. You can find out more details at caregiverhappiness.com/home. There are other prizes as well, and it's free to enter. Check out Tony's website and also go to the caregiver happiness site and register for prizes. You'll have found another wonderful resource.
Just so you know, I don't have any connection to this site or it's products - I'm just a fan.
When our elders are suffering from physical pain, mental stress, loneliness or the effects of ageism in our society, the result can be depression. Research done at Sweden’s Umeå University and reported on by Medical News Today finds that when group activities were introduced into the elders' environments depressive symptoms were often improved and the need for medication reduced or eliminated. Two separate programs were used for the research. One was a group high-intensity functional exercise program and the other was a non-exercise group activity. They were conducted with people in an elder care facility, all of whom had dementia.
Completing crosswords, making a habit of Sudoku and playing challenging brain games on the Internet have long been suggested as methods of .maintaining our cognitive health. These are all fine pursuits, but research by Mayo Clinic has shown that creative arts such as painting, drawing, and sculpting may protect the mind against cognitive decline even better than the commonly used forms of brain exercise.
Elderly people often eat more food when they are on a program of frequent, smaller meals than the standard three larger meals a day. Available snacks can also help people with Alzheimer’s who tend to wander. An informal experiment at the Parker Jewish Institute in New Hyde Park, N.Y. found that if they provided people with dementia who became anxious and agitated at night with a snack, they would often calm down and return to bed.