Tag Archives: Health & Wellness

6 Things You Need to Know About High Blood Pressure

Doctor Checking Blood Pressure

May is National High Blood Pressure Education Month, so the team at our CCRC in Sussex County, New Jersey would like to share some facts about this health condition that can help save lives!

  • High blood pressure is a primary or contributing cause to almost 1,000 deaths per day: This is according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, who says that high blood pressure increases your risk for heart attack, stroke, chronic heart failure and kidney disease.
  • 1 in 5 American adults don’t know they have high blood pressure: 7 in 10 adults in the USA have been diagnosed with high blood pressure and use medication to manage it. An annual health checkup is essential to monitoring blood pressure.
  • It may be linked to dementia: Recent studies have shown indications that high blood pressure could be a contributor to dementia conditions and loss of cognitive function, especially if high blood pressure develops between 45-65 years old.
  • It’s not just a senior condition: Young people can get high blood pressure too, especially between the ages of 25-45 years old. This and the high obesity rates among young people are thought to be some of the reasons why strokes are on the rise in this age group.
  • There aren’t usually any symptoms: It can be impossible to tell if you have high blood pressure, which is why it’s often called “the silent killer”. Even if you feel completely healthy, have your blood pressure checked by a doctor for your peace of mind – it’s painless! This is especially important if you are in a higher-risk group, which includes women and African American men.
  • It is manageable: The most important fact is that having high blood pressure isn’t an automatic death sentence – if you manage it correctly. Getting diagnosed early is key, and your doctor can recommend a regimen that may include weight loss and dietary as well as lifestyle changes along with medication that can help you live a long, enjoyable and healthy life!

Become Part of a Community at Our CCRC in Sussex County, New Jersey 

Bristol Glen is a CCRC and assisted living community based in Sussex County that aims to provide seniors with comfortable, serviced living arrangements that free up your time to enjoy life. Founded on a philosophy of ageing in place, our continuing care retirement community residents enjoy a less restrictive care model where they do not have to move from their residential apartment to access additional services as their needs change.

Contact us to find out more about our CCRC and our assisted living in Sussex County, New Jersey, please visit our website and book your visit today.

Original content posted on https://umcommunities.org/blog/6-things-you-need-to-know-about-high-blood-pressure/

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Making Home a Safer Place for Elderly Parents

Female Neighbor Helping Senior Woman Change Lightbulb In Lamp

One of the leading concerns for family members of elderly parents is that their loved ones will suffer a fall while at home. Although reduced reflexes and becoming less steady while standing are a normal part of aging, it does increase the risk of falls. This poses a very serious issue for seniors, as falls are the number one reason seniors visit the emergency room and the leading cause of hip fractures, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

UMC’s trained home health aides can assess the fall risks inside the home and correct as many as they can. They may also develop a list of recommended modifications for the home, if necessary. Here are just a few of the most common precautions on our checklist:

  • Get rid of all tripping hazards. Things that may never present a tripping hazard to a young person can easily cause a fall in older adults. Remove all rugs and throw carpets from rooms and passageways, or secure them firmly to the floor with double-sided tape. Remove all clutter from floors and stairways, including stacks of books and magazines, blankets and even decorative items. Make sure all wires and cords are removed from walkways, repositioned and secured against walls.
  • Rethink the furniture floor plan. Evaluate the furniture in each room and decide whether it should be repositioned, removed or replaced. Make sure it is positioned to keep primary traffic areas clear and easy to navigate (especially important for wheelchairs, walkers and walking sticks). Cupboards and storage should be easy to access, with everyday items within easy reach and with easy to operate handles. Furniture should sit solidly on the floor and not present a hazard if someone grabs onto it.
  • Update the bathroom. Low-profile non-slip mats are ideal for placing over tiles that can become slippery, and should be positioned by the bath, shower, basin, and toilet. Non-slip strips can also be affixed to the inside of the tub itself. Grab-bars can be installed to make getting into and out of the tub easier. Grab-bars, also highly recommended in the shower and by the toilet, can be easily installed by a plumber or handyman. For seniors with more severe mobility issues, a transfer bench and a hand-held shower are important, yet small investments that make bathing a whole lot safer.
  • Check the lighting. Aging affects our ability to see at night, so bright lighting throughout the house is essential, especially by stairs, hallways, main bathroom and in the master bedroom. Touch lights are also a great idea if light switches are located outside of easy reach when entering a room, and you can also install automatic nightlights in the hallway to assist your parents if they wake up late at night.
  • Ask for help. Even with all these thoughtful changes, there may come a time when your parents simply cannot keep up with their home or self-care on their own. Keep in touch with them about how they are coping and remember that help is always close by. If you want to try a home health aide even for a few hours per week, UMC HomeWorks offers care and services for older adults living at-home, assisting with everything from daily tasks, bathing and cooking, to transport, companionship and health care assistance, all in the comfort of their home.

Setting the Standard for Senior Home Care Services – One of the Leading Home Care Agencies in New Jersey 

At United Methodist Communities, one of New Jersey’s leading home care agencies, we strive for quality senior home care services, including in at-home care for the elderly and respite care through HomeWorks. This program assists the elderly in the comfort of their own homes and provides them, their families and caregivers with personalized, compassionate care that prioritizes health, safety and independence. In addition to healthcare and daily homecare, we also offer pastoral care for spiritual and emotional support in the home.

For more information on our senior home care services, please contact us today or visit our website at https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/home-respite-care-services-nj/

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/making-home-a-safer-place-for-elderly-parents/

 

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5 Healthy Vision Tips for Seniors

Examining patient vision

The eyes are often called the window to the soul — and they’re certainly an important window out into the world. As we age, vision can deteriorate, and we can become increasingly at risk for health conditions that affect eyesight. Here are five tips for seniors from our home health aide services team to help protect and preserve eyesight:

  1. Be aware of changes in eyesight/discomfort. In the case of most eye health conditions, early detection is critical to restoring eyesight and minimizing damage. If you notice changes in your vision and eyes — blurriness, yellowing, pain, loss of night vision, etc. — make an appointment to see an eye doctor as soon as possible.
  2. Stay informed about systemic health problems. Certain health conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure can worsen as we age and affect vision. It’s important to keep your ophthalmologist informed about your health conditions and the medication you’re taking to ensure that they can spot issues easily, give advice on how to recognize eye problems and assist in keeping your eyes healthy.
  3. Regular exercise. For eyes to be healthy, they need good blood circulation and a constant flow of oxygen, and exercise provides this stimulation. It also helps with keeping health conditions that affect the eyes under control. This doesn’t mean training for a marathon, however — yoga, stretching, walking, water aerobics and other gentle exercises are also effective.
  4. Invest in quality eye protection. Always wear protective eyewear when outdoors, especially in bright sunlight. Make sure that your sunglasses have larger lenses with an ultraviolet (UV) filter that blocks 100% of harmful rays.
  5. Have regular eye exams. Eye tests are not just for making sure that your prescription is up-to-date, it’s about monitoring and assessing the health of your eyes. Eye exams are designed to pick up early signs of health conditions that can affect your vision, including glaucoma, macular degeneration and cataracts. One exam per year is recommended, but don’t hesitate to go more often if you are concerned about your vision.

 

Home Health Aide Services New Jersey – Convenient, Scalable At Home Care for the Elderly 

At United Methodist Communities in New Jersey, we strive to offer the very best quality senior care options, from assisted living to in-home care through our HomeWorks program. This program assists older adults in the comfort of their own homes and provides them, their families and caregivers with personalized, compassionate care that prioritizes health, happiness and independence. We can assist you with respite care, overnight care, hourly or live in care, as well as provide experienced care for Alzheimer’s and dementia patients.

For more information on our home health aide services for older adults, please contact us today or visit our website at https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/home-health-aide-services/

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/5-healthy-vision-tips-for-seniors/

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Cataracts – Signs, Symptoms and Treatment Options

Optometrist with patient

June is Cataracts Awareness Month, so our in home senior care team is helping to raise awareness by sharing important information about this health condition.

What are Cataracts and What Causes Them? 

Cataracts is clouding of the eye’s lens (which is normally clear) that causes vision problems. It is predominantly a result of aging, and by 80-years of age, more than half of all Americans will have experienced a cataract. It can occur in one or both eyes and is not a contagious condition.

The lens of the eye is largely made up of protein and water. The proteins can start clumping up over time, which clouds the lens and prevents the right amount of light from reaching the retina. When this clumping first starts, it only affects a small portion of the eye and may not be easily noticed. As it progresses and grows, the symptoms will worsen, and vision will be increasingly affected.

8 Symptoms of Cataracts 

Symptoms of this condition include:

  1. Clouded or dimmed vision
  2. Sensitivity to bright light/glare
  3. Halos around lights
  4. Difficulty seeing at night
  5. Increasing need for brighter and brighter light for reading and close work
  6. Difficulty distinguishing different tones and colors
  7. Fading or browning/yellowing of the eye
  8. Double vision in the eye

Risk Factors 

Cataracts primarily result from the aging process, but other risk factors can make cataracts more likely, including certain health conditions like diabetes, certain medications like corticosteroids, as well as smoking, high alcohol intake, obesity, high blood pressure, eye injuries and excessive exposure of the eyes to sunlight.

Treatment for Cataracts 

Cataracts can be diagnosed by your physician using a range of eye tests, so annual checkups are important. Fortunately, there are very effective treatment options available to restore your vision once your prescription glasses are no longer effective.

During cataract surgery the clouded lens is removed and replaced with an artificial intraocular lens. This is usually done on an outpatient basis and, after a few days of recovery, your vision should be fully restored.

Senior Independent Home Care in NJ – Compassion, Care and Independence! 

At United Methodist Communities, a leading senior homecare services provider in New Jersey, we offer tailored, compassionate care through our advanced HomeWorks program. This program offers in home senior care for the elderly tailored to their specific requirements and provides them, their families and caregivers with personalized, compassionate care that prioritizes health, happiness and independence.For more information on our senior independent homecare services, please contact us today or visit our website at https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/cataracts-signs-symptoms-and-treatment-options/

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Parkinson’s Disease – Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

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May is Arthritis Awareness Month!

This month, our home healthcare services team is looking at a health condition that affects so many seniors — arthritis. This includes over 100 conditions that cause joint disease and joint pain, affecting over 50 million adults in the United States. Here is some helpful information about arthritis and its treatment.

Do I Have Arthritis? 

As this name is given to such a large group of conditions, there’s no definitive single set of symptoms for diagnosis. However, these four most common symptoms can indicate an issue:

  1. Swelling, pain and stiffness in the joints
  2. Decreased range of motion
  3. Physical changes to the joints, for example, knobby finger joints
  4. Difficulty with daily activities like walking, typing and climbing stairs

If you have any of these symptoms, it’s important to speak with your doctor as soon as possible to get the right diagnosis and treatment.

Osteoarthritis, the most common condition in this category, generally affects the elderly. It is caused when the cartilage (the hard but smooth cushioning surface on the ends of bones) wears away, leaving bone to rub against bone. This causes pain, swelling and stiffness, which often worsen over time, resulting in a lack of strength in the joint.

Inflammatory arthritis conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis, are immune conditions which occur when the immune system mistakenly attacks the joints of the body, resulting in painful inflammation and even damage to internal organs and other parts of the body. It can result from genetic and environmental risk factors, including smoking.

Treatment for Arthritis 

For osteoarthritis, symptoms are treated by not overworking joints, engaging in therapeutic activity and strengthening the muscles around the joints, healthy weight management, hot and cold therapies, assistive devices, mild pain medications and avoiding repetitive movements.

For inflammatory arthritis, early diagnosis is very important, as patients can get medical treatment in the form of disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) to reduce pain and inflammation and prevent permanent damage.

Compassionate, Quality Care from Our Home Health Aide Services Team in New Jersey 

Whether you need permanent senior homecare services or someone qualified and experienced to assist your loved one on a respite care or temporary basis, we are here to help through HomeWorks. As one of the leading home health agencies in NJ, our staff are fully certified in New Jersey and have senior care training and experience. Please feel free to ask for formal certification and references.

For more information about HomeWorks’ home health aide services, please contact us today or visit our website at https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/Home-Care-Services-For-Seniors

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/may-is-arthritis-awareness-month/

 

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Awareness Saves Lives – Colorectal Cancer Signs, Symptoms and Treatment

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March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, so the team from our CCRC in Sussex County, New Jersey is sharing some important information to help spread awareness about this serious disease and save lives. Here is a quick guide to the signs, symptoms and treatment of colorectal cancer.

Causes and Risk Factors 

Several factors can increase your risk of developing colorectal cancer, but doctors still aren’t sure exactly what causes this disease. If any of the following risk factors apply to you, it’s a good idea to take note of the warning signs, so the disease can be caught early.

The 7 risk factors include:

  1. Inherited gene mutations. A family history of Hereditary Nonpolyposis Colorectal Cancer (HNPCC or Lynch Syndrome) or Familial Adenomatous Polyposis (FAP or colon polyps).
  2. Age. You are more at risk if you are over the age of 50.
  3. Race. African Americans are more vulnerable to the disease than other races.
  4. Diet. Low fiber, high fat diets increase your risk.
  5. Diabetes. Insulin resistance can increase your risk.
  6. Overweight and a sedentary lifestyle place you at higher risk than more active people of healthier weight ranges.
  7. Alcohol consumption and smoking.

6 Signs and Symptoms to Watch Out For 

Unfortunately, colorectal cancer doesn’t always start off with symptoms, but it is important to note any of the following, as they can be indicators of the disease:

  1. Changes in bowel habits that last more than a few days (diarrhea, constipation, or narrowing of stool).
  2. Rectal bleeding of fresh, bright red blood.
  3. Feeling of fullness in the bowels that is not relieved by a bowel movement.
  4. Abdominal cramps.
  5. Weakness, fatigue and unintended weight loss.
  6. Low red blood cell count.

Early diagnosis is key to preventing and defeating this kind of cancer, and the American Cancer Society recommends that anyone over 50 participate in screening tests, including:

  1. Colonoscopy every 10 years.
  2. CT colonography every 5 years.
  3. Flexible sigmoidoscopy every 5 years.
  4. Double-contrast barium enema every 5 years.

Many of these symptoms can also indicate other health conditions like an infection, hemorrhoids or Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), so it’s important to see your doctor right away, even if you don’t believe you are at risk of cancer.

Independent Living for Seniors at Our CCRC in Sussex County, New Jersey 

Bristol Glen is an independent senior living community based in Sussex County that provides seniors with comfortable, serviced living arrangements that free up time to enjoy life.

Contact us to find out more about our CCRC and our assisted living facilities, amenities and services, please visit our website at https://bristolglen.umcommunities.org/ and book your visit today.

Original content posted on https://umcommunities.org/blog/awareness-saves-lives-colorectal-cancer-signs-symptoms-treatment/ 

 

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