Placing a loved one in a senior home can be a difficult moment to experience, especially if the loved one is not thrilled about the situation. Once they are settled in, however, you do have to be vigilant that their health is not being negatively impacted by neglect or abuse. Some elderly do develop conditions that make it difficult to care for them, but this is a reason why you seek a senior home that employs staff who can care for specific conditions, lifestyles and requirements. Here are three ways to protect your elderly loved ones in senior homes.
The best way to ensure your loved one is doing well in a senior home is to visit them often. If you let too much time pass between visits, you may not notice minor scratches or bruises. If they are occurring frequently, you have to start asking questions. When you visit often, you can spot changes in personality, health and mood much more quickly, too. While the expectation is that the staff will always notice minor changes, the patient and you will always be the best advocates for your loved one. Then, you can speak with the medical professionals about what you are noticing. Your goal is to ensure care is keeping up with any conditions they have or are developing. It is well-documented that the elderly benefit from family visits.
Familiarize Yourself with Laws That Protect the Elderly
In recent years, new laws to prevent and punish elder abuse have been passed at a federal level, enabling the protection of a vulnerable section of the population. If you have concerns, you have the option to speak with an ombudsman. This professional is a neutral third party assigned to go investigate complaints and claims. Rules and laws mandate senior care facilities keep accurate medical records, provide adequate supervision during all activities and access to assistive medical devices.
Review Financial Records
Protecting your loved one also involves reviewing their financial records. Accidents can happen, and the senior home may overcharge for a service or payment. The elderly are also easy victims of identity fraud and theft. Reviewing their financials at regular intervals means you can spot odd charges or purchases early.
Helping your loved ones to feel comfortable and safe is so important in these modern times. You never know what kinds of things might come up as a potential danger, so it’s important to always be prepared. To protect elderly loved ones, visit often, familiarize yourself with laws that protect them and keep an eye on their financials.
The standards of senior homes have grown over the years. Many senior citizens find these environments to be welcoming and a pleasure to stay in. This article provides you with important information to help you find one for your loved one that's both comfortable and attentive.
If a parent or another loved one is getting older and unable to care for themselves, you have the difficult task of finding a home for them to live in. The best senior homes are attentive to their residents and treat them with dignity. Before you have them move into a particular home, you need to ask these important questions.
Is the Location Clean?
The appearance of a senior home says a lot about it. If you're looking at a home and it's visibly unkempt, you should look elsewhere. While no place will be spotless, there is still a general amount of upkeep that needs to adhere to. The bathrooms, bedrooms, dining area, and other rooms need to be maintained. You should also be on the alert for any foul odors or unsettling sounds. Keep a list of any senior homes you tour and what sort of sights stick out in a bad way. If the proprietors can't treat their building well, how can they be expected to treat their residents well?
Is the Staff Happy?
A disgruntled or apathetic staff can really cast a pall over a senior home. It can also signify a dangerous environment. Happy staff who genuinely care for their charges are less likely to participate in the neglect or abuse of seniors. Take a look around to see not only how the staff looks but also the residents. You want your loved one to be in the care of people who want the best for others. Anyone who would put their safety at risk or would be reluctant to offer anything but half-hearted assistance should not be considered. Every person, no matter what their age is, deserves to be treated with respect.
Is It Fun?
A senior home should not just be a place for people to live out their twilight years. It should also be a place where they can have fun and relax. Take a look at what sort of recreation is available. Things like exercise classes and live music performances can really liven the spirits of residents. You should also speak with residents about what they like about living there.
The standards of senior homes have grown over the years. Many senior citizens find these environments to be welcoming and a pleasure to stay in. You can find one for your loved one that's comfortable and attentive. Take the time to research as much as possible so that they can be set up with the best senior home possible.
Want more content about senior care and senior living? We have you covered. Check out our relevant articles in The Senior Living IDEA.
There are several simple ways to tune up your nutrition and lifestyle habits so you can feel better than ever. A great place to start is with your diet.
(BPT) - Just about everyone feels like they could use a little extra pep in their day, that surge of energy to get things done and enjoy their favorite activities. This is especially true as we age.
However, very few people actually feel as if they have the energy they need. The stress of modern life, poor sleep habits, consuming processed foods and less than optimal digestion are triggering a perfect storm for a human energy crisis.
There are several simple ways to tune up your nutrition and lifestyle habits so you can feel better than ever. A great place to start is with your diet.
“A healthy diet that is rich in plant foods, whole grains and lean proteins is always the starting point in reaching optimal health,” says Dr. Jacob Teitelbaum+, an author and internist. “At the same time, as we get older, it’s important to understand how our bodies change, and what we need to do to help our bodies get what they need to keep our systems running well.
“However, despite our best efforts,” Teitelbaum explains, “it is very difficult for us to get all of the nutrients we need from food alone. Sometimes nutritional supplements may be needed to fill nutrient gaps.”
In addition to movement and a healthy diet, Teitelbaum shares things people in their 50s and 60s need to know to optimize their health and feel good.‡
1. Your digestive system changes as you age, so make sure it's getting support.
A healthy digestive tract is crucial for overall health. As we age, our digestive systems often need more support in order to properly break down food and absorb the nutrients our bodies need to function optimally, according to a study published in Oncotarget.
To get the most nutrition from the food you eat, Dr. Teitelbaum recommends talking to your doctor about adding a plant-based enzyme supplement to your regimen to support your digestive health. GI Digest, for example, is a comprehensive digestive enzyme formula designed to assist in the proper digestion of proteins, fats, starch, dairy and gluten.‡
2. Small things can make a big difference for heart health.
Getting an adequate supply of omega-3 fatty acids along with vitamin D, also known as the sunshine vitamin, may support cardiovascular health.‡ Because vitamin D is best absorbed in the body when taken with a fat source, Dr. Teitelbaum suggests talking to your doctor about a supplement that has a combination of omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin D, like QÜELL Fish Oil EPA/DHA Plus D.‡ Also, be sure to talk to your doctor about other heart-healthy habits you can incorporate into your life, because things like daily walks, reducing stress and increasing your fruit and vegetable intake can all support heart health.‡
3. Is your energy lagging? It may be a simple deficiency.
As we age, we tend to accept at face value that having less energy just comes with the territory. Sometimes the solution is a simple matter of meeting our bodies’ nutritional needs. For example, one mineral that helps the body convert nutrients into energy is magnesium. When levels get low, it can interfere with your body’s ability to access its energy stores, causing the body to work harder, as shown in a study published in the Journal of Nutrition.
To support your body’s metabolic function, a supplement like Magnesium Glycinate contains 100 mg of magnesium in an easy-to-swallow tablet.
In addition, vitamin B12 is a nutrient that helps your body convert food into energy; however, as we age, our bodies can begin to have trouble absorbing enough B12. To support your body’s energy needs, ask your doctor about taking Methyl B12 Plus, a great-tasting lozenge that rapidly dissolves in the mouth.
If your energy levels are lagging, Dr. Teitelbaum says, it’s important to talk to your doctor, so together, you can uncover the root causes, and he or she can make recommendations.‡
4. Feed your body with real, whole foods.
Food processing destroys most of the vitamins, minerals and other key nutrients the body needs to function optimally. Dr. Teitelbaum says the best thing you can do is cut the sugar from your diet and slowly add whole foods. Though most adults should be eating at least 1.5 cups of fruit and two cups of vegetables per day, a mere 9 percent actually meet that target, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
It may sound like a tall order to work all those fruit and veggie servings into your diet, but break down the daily goal into smaller parts and it may feel more attainable. For example, just take the simple step of adding one extra serving of fruits and veggies to each meal. Slice some banana on your morning cereal, opt for the steamed veggies with your entree, snack on veggies and hummus, and close the meal with fresh berries. Supplementing with a high-quality multivitamin can also help fill the gaps in your diet. Dr. Teitelbaum recommends Ultra Preventive X as a daily multivitamin that can help provide the nutrients you need in their most usable forms for the body.‡
To address your needs and support your health, always talk to your healthcare practitioner about adding nutritional supplements to your daily routine. To discover new ways to use nutrition to tune up your health, visit the Douglas Labs website and watch the videos at www.douglaslabs.com/tune-up-teitelbaum/.
+Dr. Teitelbaum has been retained as a medical consultant in advising Douglas Laboratories.
‡These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
Most of us know lifestyle changes can improve our overall health. Exercising more, eating more vegetables and not smoking all have an effect on blood flow in the body, which can affect our overall health. These can impact the health of your eyes as well.
(BPT) - Most of us know lifestyle changes can improve our overall health. Exercising more, eating more vegetables and not smoking all have an effect on blood flow in the body, which can affect our overall health.
What many don’t realize is that when blood flow is blocked or slows down, the health of our eyes can also be affected. That means that wearing neckties too tight or doing certain yoga poses, such as the downward dog, can increase pressure in the eyes, which can lead to an eye disease called glaucoma. Glaucoma has few warning signs, and is the leading cause of blindness for people over the age of 60. Being overweight or having high blood pressure can increase a person’s risk for another common eye disease called age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a leading cause of vision loss among people age 50 and older.
Vision loss — or even worse, blindness — can negatively impact the quality of life, independence and the ability to do daily things such as driving, reading or seeing grandchildren.
The American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends that individuals 65 and older get an annual medical eye exam with an ophthalmologist, which is a medical doctor who specializes in medical and surgical eye care. Through comprehensive eye exams, ophthalmologists can check a person’s eyes for hidden signs of eye disease, which may have no noticeable symptoms in the early stages. Once diagnosed, ophthalmologists can provide treatments to help prevent vision loss.
For those concerned about the cost of an exam, the American Academy of Ophthalmology’s EyeCare America program may be able to help. More than 5,500 dedicated volunteer ophthalmologists provide eye exams and care, often at no out-of-pocket cost to eligible patients. Since 1985, the program has helped nearly 2 million people in need.
EyeCare America serves U.S. citizens or legal residents who do not belong to an HMO.
To be eligible for the EyeCare America seniors program, an individual:
* Must be age 65 or older, and
* Have not had an eye exam by an ophthalmologist in three or more years.
To be eligible for the EyeCare America glaucoma program, an individual:
* Must not have had an eye exam within the last year, and must be at an increased glaucoma risk due to age, race and/or family history.
Many sight-stealing conditions can be prevented or slowed down with proper care and making simple lifestyle adjustments such as:
1. Avoid inverted postures in yoga. Studies show head-down positions can increase eye pressure and are not recommended for glaucoma patients. There are plenty of yoga exercises that don’t have this effect.
2. Avoid tight neckties. Researchers say that a too-tight necktie may increase the risk of glaucoma by increasing blood pressure inside the eyes.
3. Eat a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, especially green, leafy ones. One study showed that people who ate more leafy vegetables have a 20 to 30 percent lower risk of developing glaucoma. Why? Nitrates in green vegetables can be converted to nitric oxide, which can improve blood flow and help regulate pressure inside the eye.
4. Exercise regularly. According to the National Eye Institute, eating a healthy diet and getting exercise have been shown in earlier studies to protect against AMD. A recent study showed that people who engaged in moderate to vigorous physical activity appear to have a 73 percent lower risk of developing glaucoma. This is because blood flow and pressure inside the eye may change with exercise.
For more information about EyeCare America or to see if you or others are eligible to be matched with one of its volunteer ophthalmologists, visit www.aao.org/eyecareamerica.
EyeCare America is cosponsored by the Knights Templar Eye Foundation Inc., with additional support from Alcon and Regeneron.
Although many think most sun damage happens at a young age, the majority of sun exposure actually occurs after the age of 40. However, it’s never too late to make a difference in your skin health with these preventative tips.
It’s Never Too Late to Stay Protected from the Sun
(Family Features) It’s a common myth that most sun damage happens before the age of 18, but does this mean sun damage becomes less of a threat as we get older? Although many think most sun damage happens at a young age, the majority of sun exposure actually occurs after the age of 40.¹ However, it’s never too late to make a difference in your skin health.
In fact, between 40-50 percent of Americans who live to age 65 will have skin cancer at least once in their lives.² Non-melanoma skin cancer, including basal cell carcinoma, is the most common form of skin cancer,³ and most often occurs in people over the age of 50.4 This rang true for John Gohmann, who was diagnosed with advanced basal cell carcinoma at age 64, and has been an outdoorsman for as long as he can remember.
“Being outside my whole life, playing a lot of golf and working on the railroad, I never used sunscreen and didn’t think about getting skin cancer,” John said. “I was shocked to learn not wearing sunscreen was so dangerous and that I could still be causing myself damage, even in my later years.”
After ignoring a small lesion on his nose for years, John could no longer ignore the pain and finally went to see a dermatologist. The cancer had spread into the bone of his nose, upper lip and gums, and his doctor said he was not eligible for surgery or radiation because of the location and depth of the cancer. John learned for his particular case he was eligible for an oral pill, Erivedge (vismodegib), which is a prescription medicine used to treat adults with basal cell carcinoma that has spread to other parts of the body and cannot be treated with surgery or radiation. John is still taking the medicine today. Like all medications, Erivedge is associated with serious side effects and has the potential to harm an unborn baby. Always consult with your doctor on possible side effects.
“For the first time in my life, I recognize the dangers of skin cancer and the sun,” John said. “I now have a routine to protect myself from harmful sun exposure, especially when I’m on the golf course, including wearing sun screen and protective clothing, and think it’s important for everyone to schedule an annual appointment with their physician.”
It’s never too late to protect yourself from the sun. Dr. Keith LeBlanc Jr. of The Skin Surgery Centre recommends these preventative tips:
Important Safety Information and Indication
It is not known if Erivedge is safe and effective in children.
Erivedge can cause a patient’s baby to die before it is born (be stillborn) or cause a baby to have severe birth defects.
For females who can become pregnant:
Exposure to Erivedge during pregnancy:
Before taking Erivedge, patients should tell their healthcare provider:
While taking Erivedge, patients should avoid:
Possible Side Effects of Erivedge:
The most common side effects of Erivedge are: muscle spasms, hair loss, change in how things taste or loss of taste, weight loss, tiredness, nausea, diarrhea, decreased appetite, constipation, joint pain and vomiting.
Erivedge can cause absence of menstrual periods (amenorrhea) in females who are able to become pregnant. It is not known if amenorrhea is permanent. Patients should talk to their healthcare provider if they have concerns about fertility.
These are not all of the possible side effects of Erivedge. Because everyone is different, it is not possible to predict what side effects any one person will have or how severe they may be. Patients should talk to their doctor for medical advice about side effects.
Side effects may be reported to the FDA at (800) FDA-1088 or www.fda.gov/medwatch. Side effects may also be reported to Genentech at (888) 835-2555.
For more information on skin cancer, visit gene.com/skin-health.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images (man with doctor)
¹ Skin Cancer Foundation. The Sun Keeps Rising: Why Seniors Can’t Skip UV Protection. Available at https://www.skincancer.org/healthy-lifestyle/anti-aging/seniors
2Sun Protection. Cancer Trends Progress Report –2009/2010 Update. National Cancer Institute. Available at http://progressreport.cancer.gov/sites/default/files/archive/report2009.pdf
3 American Cancer Society. Key Statistics for Basal and Squamous Cell Skin Cancers. Available at https://www.cancer.org/cancer/basal-and-squamous-cell-skin-cancer/about/key-statistics.html
4 Mayo Clinic. Basal cell carcinoma. Available at https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/basalcell-carcinoma/symptoms-causes/syc-20354187
5American Academy of Dermatology. Protect your skin from the sun. Available at https://www.aad.org/public/kids/skin/taking-care-of-your-skin/protect-your-skin-from-the-sun
6 Skin Cancer Foundation. Basal Cell Carcinoma – Causes and Risk Factors. Available at https://www.skincancer.org/skin-cancer-information/basal-cell-carcinoma/bcc-causes-and-risk-factors
7 Skin Cancer Foundation. Basal Cell Carcinoma Prevention Guidelines. Available at: https://www.skincancer.org/skin-cancer-information/basal-cell-carcinoma/bcc-prevention-guidelines
8 American Academy of Dermatology. Basal Cell Carcinoma: Diagnosis And Treatment. Available at: https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/skin-cancer/basal-cell-carcinoma#treatment
Keeping your heart in good shape starts at mealtime. Try adding a colorful, flavorful twist to a simple salad by combining crunchy kale with fresh pecans, pomegranate seeds and pears for a tasty, heart-healthy meal you can feel good about.
Heart-Smart Eating Can Be Delicious and Nutritious
(Family Features) Keeping your heart in good shape starts at mealtime. Fortunately, there’s no reason to skimp on flavor to spread the love to your heart.
For example, homegrown American Pecans are a naturally sweet, heart-smart ingredient you can add to salads, vegetable side dishes, oatmeal and other whole grains – or enjoy on their own as a snack. Their unique mix of “good” unsaturated fats, fiber, plant sterols and flavonoids add up to make pecans a powerful, heart-healthy food.
Each 1-ounce serving provides 18 grams of unsaturated fat with zero cholesterol or sodium. In fact, American Pecans are certified as a heart-healthy food by the American Heart Association’s® Heart-Check Certification Program. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, scientific evidence suggests but does not prove that eating 1.5 ounces per day of most nuts, such as pecans, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol may reduce the risk of heart disease.
Try adding a colorful, flavorful twist to a simple salad by combining crunchy kale with fresh pecans, pomegranate seeds and pears for a tasty, heart-healthy meal you can feel good about.
For more recipes, nutrition information and cooking tips, visit americanpecan.com.
Pecan, Pear, Pomegranate Kale Salad
Prep time: 20 minutes
Note: Heart-Check certification does not apply to recipes or information unless expressly stated.
Nutritional information per serving: 230 calories; 21 g fat; 2.5 g saturated fat; 75 mg sodium; 11 g carbohydrates; 3 g fiber; 2 g protein.SOURCE:
American Pecan Council
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