Tag Archives: Home Help Services for the Elderly

8 Spring Cleaning Safety and Health Tips for Helping Seniors

cheerful young girl helping with household chores elderly woman home

Spring is a wonderful time of year that’s all about transitioning into those long, care-free summer days. For seniors, however, this season can bring its set of challenges despite the warmer weather!

Here are some tips for caregivers to help senior neighbors, friends, family and members of community to shake off the winter weather:

Spring Cleaning Safety Tips 

Some of us dread spring cleaning and seniors are no exception! If you’re planning to help an elderly loved one with this task, follow these tips:

  1. Plan ahead. Make a list of each area that needs to be addressed in the home and what you want to accomplish. Be sure to get approval for each step — especially about what must go and what should stay.
  2. Team effort. Your loved one is likely only going to be able to manage lighter tasks and supervise some of the process, so don’t take on everything else alone. Get friends and family in to help — it will make the job easier and faster, as well as a lot more enjoyable!
  3. De-clutter first. Clutter is a very real health hazard for seniors, so it should be a priority when cleaning out. Once you’ve dealt with initial clutter, only then move on to cupboards and storage areas. Remember to keep clear paths throughout the house that can accommodate your loved one’s walker or wheelchair, if necessary.
  4. Test safety devices. Use this opportunity to install safety devices in the home or test ones already in place to make sure they are in working order. This includes ensuring grab bars are secure, fire and carbon monoxide detectors function, and that lights are bright and in full working order.

Spring Health Checks 

Spring is allergy season, and seniors are no exception!

  1. Be sure to check if your loved one is suffering from any allergy symptoms and if so, plan a trip to the doctor to prescribe the right medication.
  2. If you suspect that the allergen is inside the home, check and clean air conditioning filters.
  3. Check for mold growth in moist areas of the home and inside cupboards.
  4. Give bedding and soft furnishings a thorough cleaning.

Companionship, Nursing and More from Our NJ Home Help Services for the Elderly 

At United Methodist Communities in New Jersey, we understand the challenges of providing expert medical care and companionship to seniors while encouraging a full and independent life, which is why we’ve developed our HomeWorks program.

Through this program, trained and experienced staff can assist seniors and their families through comprehensive in home care. Each care plan is designed around the client’s needs, filling in with necessary assistance while allowing your loved one to remain in the comfort of their home.

In addition to helping with daily tasks, transport and personal hygiene, our senior home care services team can assist with nursing, medication management and much more on a permanent or temporary basis. For dementia and Alzheimer’s patients, we can develop specific care routines that ensure a sense of structure and help reduce stress and anxiety.

For more information on our home health aide services and residential in-home respite care in NJ, please contact us today or visit our website at https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/elderly-home-health-care-nj/

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/8-spring-cleaning-safety-and-health-tips-for-helping-seniors/ 

 

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Special Home Caregiving Services for Alzheimer’s and Dementia Patients

Dementia and Occupational Therapy - Home caregiver and senior adult woman

An Alzheimer’s or dementia diagnosis is a challenge to deal with for the patient and loved ones. As the disease progresses, patients will require different levels of care and support to stay healthy, comfortable and enjoy a good quality of life. Our senior home care services team can provide some insight into the care and companion services for your loved one.

Types of at home care 

A common misunderstanding about at home care is that it is limited to medical care, but actually, there are a few different types of care designed to provide assistance wherever it’s needed. These include:

  • Companion services. home health aide supervises certain activities – like recreation, grocery shopping, social visits and more. These are great for seniors who need help with transport, remembering appointments, and so forth.
  • Homemaker services. Going one step further, these help your loved one manage their household. This is ideal for seniors who are more frail, recovering from an illness/surgery, or struggling with their memory. It covers daily household chores, meal prep and cooking, and generally managing the home.
  • Personal care services. This covers assistance with bathing, eating, dressing, toileting, exercising, and other activities.
  • Skilled nursing care. These focus on your loved one’s medical needs, including wound care, medication management and so forth.

Certified home health aide services are tailored to your loved one’s needs 

When it comes to these services, many seniors require some of one and a little of another, so it’s important to find a provider who can tailor services to fit individual requirements. Because Alzheimer’s and dementia are progressive diseases with specific symptoms, your experienced aide will not only be able to cope with the challenges your loved one faces, but also play an active role in their care. This means proposing and performing therapies to assist your loved one, keeping in contact with family members, and offering recommendations when your loved one’s care requirements change.

Compassionate care from experienced home health aide services in New Jersey 

At United Methodist Communities in New Jersey, we understand the challenges of providing expert care and companionship to seniors while encouraging a full and independent life, which is why we’ve developed our HomeWorks program.

Through this program, trained and highly experienced staff can assist seniors and their families through comprehensive in home care. Each care plan is designed around the client’s exact needs, filling in with necessary assistance while allowing your loved one to remain in the comfort of their home.

In addition to helping with daily tasks, transport and personal hygiene, our senior home care services team can assist with nursing, medication management and much more. For dementia and Alzheimer’s patients, we can develop specific care routines that ensure a sense of structure and help reduce stress and anxiety.

For more information on our in-home care for elderly, please contact us today or visit our website at https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/elderly-home-health-care-nj/

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/special-home-caregiving-services-alzheimers-dementia-patients/

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Reducing Fall Risk Among Older Adults Living at Home

Falls are the number one risk for seniors and account for the clear majority of injuries, broken bones, and hospital stays they experience. In fact, falls are the leading cause of both fatal and non-fatal injuries for Americans over age 65, which makes fall prevention essential.

Home Health Aides Advise You to Be Aware of What Causes Falls

Older adults are vulnerable to falls for many reasons and knowing what may contribute to a fall can help prevent it. Some of the most common reasons include poor vision, dizziness, poor balance, chronic health conditions, and even the home itself.

Steps Every Senior Caregiver Should Take to Help Prevent Falls: 

Step one. Talk to your loved one’s doctor. Seniors often take a variety of medications as well as self-medicating with over-the-counter drugs. Ask the doctor to fully evaluate your loved one’s medications, as well as how they are taking them in order to eliminate any conflicts that may lead to dizziness, sleepiness, low blood pressure or anything else that could cause a fall. This is also a good time to get a record of previous falls, near-falls and fall-related injuries to see if there is a specific issue or an increase in frequency.

Step two. Start an age and health-appropriate exercise routine. Balance, reflexes and strength diminish as we age, but that doesn’t mean anyone should sit in a chair all day. Using targeted exercise regimes on a regular basis, seniors can build up core muscles and strength that is critical to preventing falls and injuries. Be sure to use a physical therapist or trainer who is experienced with older adults and understands your loved one’s health.

Step three. Evaluate your loved one’s environment. Poor lighting, clutter, rugs that shift, slippery tiles, steps, and bathrooms without grab rails significantly contribute to falls. Hallways and rooms should be clear and easy to navigate; install grab bars in the bathroom, and remove rugs. Make sure lighting is bright and easy to access in every room — especially between the bathroom and bedroom. Simple battery-operated press lights work well!

Step four. Your loved one’s wardrobe may pose hazards. Shoes should fit well and have good grip; trousers and skirts shouldn’t be too long. Substitute a sturdy pair of slippers for wearing socks around the home.

Assistance for Seniors and Their Loved Ones Through In-Home Care for the Elderly 

United Methodist Communities strives to offer the very best quality senior independent home care options in New Jersey through HomeWorks. This program assists the elderly in the comfort of their own homes and provides them, their families and caregivers personalized, compassionate care that prioritizes health, happiness and independence. In addition to daily homecare, we also offer pastoral care for spiritual and emotional support in the home.

For more information on our senior home care services or to find a qualified home health aide in New Jersey, please contact us today and visit our website at https://homeworks.umcommunities.org.

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/reducing-fall-risk-among-older-adults-living-home/

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How to Help Elderly Loved Ones Get Ready for Winter

New Jersey winters can be harsh, and even more so for the elderly in our communities. Here are some quick tips from our home health aide services specialists to ensure your loved one will be warm and safe even in the coldest months.

Here’s what home help services for the elderly recommend: 

  • Schedule heating system service from a qualified local contractor in advance of your anticipated need. They will start to get busy from October onwards, so the sooner you call them, the better.
  • Make sure that the smoke and carbon monoxide alarms are working. There should be one per room, especially where there is a gas appliance or heater.
  • Place a container with a mixture of salt and sand by exterior doors, so that it can be sprinkled onto icy steps and paving, if needed.
  • Fit a grab rail or some kind of hand support by outdoor stairs and paving to help prevent falls.
  • Stock up on cold and flu medications and take your loved one to their doctor for their annual flu vaccine.
  • Keep a record of prescription medications and collect them early if bad weather is about to set in.
  • Place flashlights with full batteries in a handy place in each room in case of power outages. It’s also a good idea to invest in an external battery charger for a cell phone or tablet.
  • Stock the freezer with nutritious, ready-made meals so that your loved one can stay home easily in the event of a storm or bad weather.
  • Make a plan with a local service provider, friend or family member to clear driveways, sidewalks and paths so they are free of snow.
  • If your loved one is still driving, pack an emergency kit for the car in case of a breakdown. Include food, water, a flashlight with spare batteries, first aid kit, warm jacket or blanket, and insist that they drive with a charged cell phone at all times. It’s important to minimize time on the road during winter because of the additional hazards, so it’s best to arrange transport and take on shopping and chores whenever possible.

Home help services for the elderly in NJ, whatever the season! 

At United Methodist Communities, we strive to offer the very best home health aide services in New Jersey through our HomeWorks program. This program is about assisting the elderly in the comfort of their own homes and providing them, their families and caregivers with personalized, compassionate care that prioritizes health, happiness and independence.

For more information on our in-home healthcare agency or our residential in home respite care in NJ, please contact us today and visit our website at https://homeworks.umcommunities.org.

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/help-elderly-loved-ones-get-ready-winter/

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What is Senior Isolation and How We Can Help?

“Senior isolation” is a blanket term meaning feelings of loneliness, depression and isolation commonly found among the elderly. While these issues may seem less concerning than illness, the truth is that they lead to serious health and quality of life problems. Here are some insights from our in-home respite care team:

Senior Isolation is On the Rise 

Although the USA has a growing elderly population, that doesn’t mean seniors are feeling less isolated — in fact, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that 28% of seniors lived alone at the time of the study. This lack of in-home support from a spouse or loved one is further exacerbated by demographics: fewer adults have children, so there are less people available to assist with companionship and care.

Risks to Health and Lifespan 

The sad reality is that loneliness, even perceived loneliness, damages our health and wellbeing. It’s associated with a higher risk of mortality in people over age 52, and increases the risks of poor physical and mental health. Social isolation can affect cognitive abilities, too, leading to poor cognitive performance, increased cognitive decline and higher risk of dementia.

Long-term illnesses strongly associated with social isolation include arthritis, chronic lung disease, high blood pressure, depression, and mobility problems. Many seniors who experience social isolation often recover from illness and surgery much slower and don’t regain the same strength and mobility as those with healthy social connections.

Therefore, these seniors often require more intensive care and may require it at an earlier stage in their lifetimes, too.

How Can We Help Fight Social Isolation? 

There are many ways that we can all help keep seniors more socially connected and cared for. Here are some effective strategies for helping family members, loved ones and the elderly in your community:

  • Living situation. If your loved one lives far away or by themselves, they are at risk of senior isolation. Moving into a vibrant assisted living community, a home closer to friends and family (or a senior-friendly town), or investing in senior independent home care can help ensure their access to companionship and social connections.
  • Pets. Beside wonderful sources of companionship, pets give your loved one a sense of purpose and plenty of love. Your local animal shelter may be able to provide an equally-lonely and gentle cat or dog; some assisted living facilities even allow animals.
  • Transport. If your loved one can no longer drive, then lack of transport may be holding them back from an otherwise active life. Look in your local directory for transport services for the elderly, volunteer your own time, or speak to home healthcare professionals about providing a transport service for your loved one.

Companionship, Medical Care and More from NJ In-Home Respite Care Specialists 

United Methodist Communities strives to offer the very best quality senior independent home care options, from assisted living to in-home care through HomeWorks. This program assists the elderly in the comfort of their own homes and provides them, their families and caregivers personalized, compassionate care that prioritizes health, happiness and independence. In addition to medical and daily home care, we also offer pastoral care for spiritual and emotional support in the home.

For more information on our senior home care services and in-home respite care, 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/senior-isolation-can-help/

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Food Matters – Maximizing Nutrition Among Seniors

Good nutrition and a healthy diet is an essential for every time of life, but is more of a challenge for seniors. As we age, our bodies can become less effective at getting nutrients from the food we eat, appetites can decrease, chewing certain foods becomes more difficult, and many older adults experience mobility issues that make shopping and food preparation more difficult. Putting the extra effort into getting the right nutrients, however, is very important, as they significantly impact health, wellness and quality of life.

Here are some strategies from our at home health care agency for helping to improve the diet and nutrition of your elderly loved one:

Five steps to take to help ensure good nutrition in your elderly loved one 

  1. This important first step in the process will help you find out the quality of your loved one’s nutrition, what they are missing and where complications are occurring, so that you can develop a plan that suits their need. Ask your physician to recommend a nutritionist to assist you.
  2. Know the basics. The Health and Medicine Division of the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine’s guidelines for nutrition in older adults are a good way to get to know the basics. Fruits and vegetables should be central to the diet, along with nuts, legumes and wholegrains, fish and low-fat dairy products. Sugar and refined foods should be limited.
  3. Small, frequent meals. Large portions can be intimidating and result in limited nutritional intake (for example, just eating one type of food on the plate before becoming full). Encourage smaller portions more frequently from a greater variety of foods. Snacks of yogurt and fresh fruit between meals with lean protein and a few different vegetables help create a more varied diet and make eating greater quantities of food easier.
  4. Healthy calories. If maintaining weight or gaining weight needs to occur, choose high-calorie healthy options like health shakes and protein-filled smoothies. These often contain plenty of vitamins and additional nutrients and are easy to eat and digest —just be sure not to choose one that is high in sugar.
  5. Ask for help. For many seniors and their caregivers, mealtimes are a challenge that take up a lot of time and effort. There are many meal services, however, that specialize in nutritionally-balanced home-cooked meals for seniors who can take the strain off you and your loved one. Try a few providers in your area and look for meals that meet the guidelines of your physician and nutritionist.

Professional, affordable at home care for the elderly in NJ 

United Methodist Communities strives to offer the very best home health aide services in New Jersey through HomeWorks. This program assists the elderly in the comfort of their own homes and offers them, their families and caregivers, personalized, compassionate care that prioritizes health, happiness and independence.

For more information about our at home healthcare agency or our home help services for the elderly, please contact us today or visit our website at https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/elderly-home-health-care-nj/

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/food-matters-maximizing-nutrition-among-seniors/

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Making the Most of Summer – Safety Tips for Seniors

Long summer days are almost here and New Jersey residents will soon be swimming, barbecuing and exploring the outdoors! Although long anticipated, this weather does carry some risks for seniors, as they are more vulnerable to the effects of the heat and sun. Here are some tips from our in-home senior care specialists in NJ on how to stay safe and healthy in the heat:

  • Drink lots of liquids. Dehydration is a serious risk for seniors, as they are often less aware of their bodies’ signals for liquid. This is a common part of the aging process, but is especially problematic in seniors with dementia. The recommended allowance of 8 ounces per day can include water, fruit juices, herbal tea or electrolyte drinks.
  • Dress for the weather. Light, natural fabrics that allow the skin to breathe will help regulate body temperature. Dark fabrics attract heat, while lighter colors reflect it, helping to cool the body.
  • Be sun safe. As we age our skin becomes more vulnerable to sun damage. Use a high SPF (sun protection factor) of 30 or more to protect skin. While outdoors wear a hat and sunglasses to block harmful UVA and UVB rays that can damage eyesight. It’s also important to stay indoors during the peak heat of the day, from around 11am to 3pm when the sun is at its strongest and the risks of burning and dehydration are highest.
  • Air conditioning. Keeping the air in your home cool is the best way to stay healthy in the heat. It’s recommended that homes don’t exceed 85 degrees Fahrenheit for a significant amount of time. If there is no air conditioning, visita mall, the movies or a friend’s house to get some relief. A cool bath or shower will also help regulate body temperature.
  • Check in. If you have elderly loved ones or neighbors, give them a quick call on hot days to make sure they are coping with the heat. You can use the opportunity to catch up, see if their air conditioning is on and working properly or even plan an outing to somewhere cooler.
  • Know the signs of heatstroke. Heatstroke can affect anyone, but seniors are especially vulnerable because they have a difficult time regulating body temperature — with potentially deadly consequences. Symptoms  include confusion and disorientation, headaches, nausea, exhaustion and a rapidly beating pulse. If you recognize these signs, call for medical attention immediately and get the affected person out of the heat and into a cool environment. Have them lie down and place ice packs or cold wet towels on their body until help arrives.

Compassionate, Skilled Senior Homecare Services in New Jersey 

At United Methodist Communities, we strive to offer the very best quality senior independent homecare options, from assisted living to in-homecare 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. In addition to daily homecare we also offer pastoral care for spiritual and emotional support in the home.

For more information on our senior home care services for the elderly, please contact us today at https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/.

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/making-summer-safety-tips-seniors/

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