Hospital Feed

Patients are supposed to leave the hospital healthier than when they arrived and long-term care is intended to enhance residents’ quality of life through increased care and supervision, but these care settings can also pose some risks. One of the biggest threats lurking in these facilities is Clostridium difficile. This type of bacteria, often referred to as C. difficile or C. diff, can spread easily in these environments and turn into a very serious infection for older individuals and those whose health is already compromised. Read more →

Elders can have an especially hard time with the holiday season. While aging and maturity can bring the wisdom of years for many people, there are inevitable losses that come to even the most healthy individuals. Many of these losses are emotional and social in nature. Spouses become ill or die. Other aging relatives and friends become seriously ill, or die Read more →

According to the national Alzheimer’s Association, in 2013, 15.5 million family and friends provided 17.7 billion hours of unpaid care to those with Alzheimer's and other dementias. Also, Alzheimer's and dementia caregivers had $9.3 billion in additional health care costs of their own in the same year. Nearly 60 percent of Alzheimer's and dementia caregivers rate the emotional stress of caregiving as high or very high, and more than one-third report symptoms of depression. Remember, this is just the cost for caregivers. Read more →

It’s far too easy for onlookers to view someone with dementia as unable to feel pain. Since the disease eventually renders most people helpless and cognitively inexpressive, they can't articulate what hurts or why they are upset. Read more →

Dear Carol: Can illnesses like a bad cold, the flu, a urinary infection or other common ailment make someone with Alzheimer’s worse? My mother had been diagnosed to be in quite an early stage of Alzheimer’s disease but she still got along very well. She then developed a cold which was followed by a UTI and then pneumonia so we had to have her hospitalized. The whole experience was terrible. Mom’s physical issues were eventually taken care of by antibiotics and she seems alright physically, but she’s gotten much more confused and her short-term memory has deteriorated markedly. I’m wondering what caused this big change so quickly. The doctor said that since Alzheimer’s is progressive it’s hard to tell. He’s guiding us toward looking for a memory unit for Mom since she lives alone and I can’t quit my job to take care of her at home as progresses to the middle stages of the disease. This stage now seems much closer than a month ago before she got sick. Is this a common situation? STC Read more →

Why are some elders subject to returning home from a hospitalization cognitively worse? Experts are studying this problem with varying results, but many agree that there are conditions at play which can result in an elderly person suffering cognitive decline after a hospitalization. Read more →

Dear Carol: My dad is only 62 but I’m worried that he may have dementia. He’s had depression during much of his life, but what scares me now is that he’s gotten paranoid. He twists memories of things that did happen until the story is unrecognizable and he talks about things in the past that never occurred. The latest is some kind of conspiracy about his past work. Since he was a teacher, there isn’t much controversy involved, but still, as he now sees it, he was a target of some sort of witch hunt. Read more →

This is my personal stamp on their credibility. Agingcare has now put together a valuable booklet to help our veterans and their families navigate what can be a frustrating journey to determine what benefits they are eligible for. Take a look. Read more →

Our culture is steeped in language makes accepting the terminal diagnosis of ourselves or a loved one more difficult to accept than it needs to be. Doctors say, “I’m sorry, there’s nothing more we can do. You might as well go on hospice care.” Patients say that they want “aggressive treatment,” Read more →