Tag Archives: in-home senior care

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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A Guide to Arthritis

In the USA, over 50 million adults suffer from some degree of arthritis, , making this health condition  the leading cause of disability. Here’s a quick guide from our in-home respite care services team.

What is Arthritis?

This is the collective name given to more than 100 different rheumatic diseases which cause joint pain and disease. The term refers to inflammation of the joints; symptoms can be mild, moderate, severe or  even come and go over time. These symptoms can include:

  • Isolated pain or pain throughout the body.
  • Skin around the joint becomes red and swollen, and feels warm to the touch.
  • Stiffness often flares up after a period of immobility, such as sleeping or sitting at a desk. This may also occur after exercise, or in some cases, persists throughout the day.
  • Experience problems with mobility such as getting up from a sitting position or bed, doing fine motor work (knitting, writing, etc.), and walking.

Common Types of Arthritis and their Treatments 

Rheumatoid Arthritis. This systemic disease typically affects wrists, fingers, knees, feet and ankles on both sides of the body. Symptoms commonly include morning stiffness for over an hour, equal joint pain on both sides of the body, loss of joint  range-of-motion and joint malformation over time. These symptoms can also be accompanied by sleep difficulties, numbness or tingling in the hands and feet, nodules under the skin, chest pain and eye discomfort.

While not curable, treatments for the symptoms, include non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications, steroids, disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs, and biologic agents. Doctors may also recommend occupational therapy, and dietary supplements rich in healthy fatty acids and oils, and in severe cases, surgery.

Osteoarthritis. This is usually the result of wear-and-tear on the joints, often seen in older adults. Symptoms include pain and stiffness in certain joints, worse pain after exercise, grating sounds when the joint is used, and morning stiffness. This health condition cannot be cured or reversed, but there are treatment options to help manage symptoms. These can include pain medication, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, chronic pain medication, injections of cortisone and lubrication, and occupational therapy. Doctors may also suggest certain exercises and nutritional supplements that are rich in healthy fatty acids and oils.

Care from our NJ in-home respite care and health aide services 

United Methodist Communities, strives to offer the very best quality senior independent home care options through HomeWorks. This program assists older adults in the comfort of their own homes, providing them, their families and caregivers, personalized, compassionate care that prioritizes health, happiness and independence.

In addition to medical care and daily home care, we also offer in-home respite care services.

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

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/a-guide-to-arthritis/

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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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A Portrait of In-Home Care for Memory Impaired Adults

With over 5.5 million Americans living with dementia-related health conditions that affect memory, like Alzheimer’s, in-home care services are becoming a popular choice for families who require assistance for their loved ones, but want to stay in the comfort of their own homes. Here’s some insight into how these care services work, from one of New Jersey’s leading home health agencies.

What services can a home health aide provide? 

This will depend on the agency you choose, but it’s recommended that you look for one which can offer caregivers skilled and experienced in dealing with dementia and Alzheimer’s patients.Their senior care services should include:

  • Memory care. These routine-based therapeutic programs are based around your loved one’s mental strengths, requirements and unique needs. They can include everyday routines, fitness programs, music therapy and sensory stimulation by trained caregivers and therapists.
  • Companion services. These services focus on providing your loved one with company, assistance in socializing and general supervision.
  • Personal services. These can include all personal hygiene and grooming activities that your loved one may need help with, like bathing, dressing and more.
  • Home services. This can include light housekeeping, shopping, meal preparation and managing appointments.
  • Skilled nursing care. This includes medication management, wound care, physical therapy, health monitoring, coordinating between medical specialists and more, as required by your loved one.

A typical day of home healthcare for the elderly with dementia 

Because these conditions affect memory and patients can easily become confused and distressed, a typical day of home care focuses on routine. By approaching the day step-by-step from setting the table and eating food to setting aside certain times for socialization, therapy and other activities, caregivers can work with patients and prioritize their quality of life. In their supervisory role, caregivers encourage patients to hold onto and exercise a comfortable level of independence while ensuring their physical safety and well-being. Your home health aide will also monitor and report changes in health and well-being, and communicate between family and medical specialists, if required.

Speak to the specialists at United Methodist Communities for expert dementia home care 

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 the elderly in the comfort of their own homes and provides 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, please contact us today at https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/.

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/portrait-home-care-memoryimpaired-adults/

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When to Consider In-Home Care Services

In-home care services  provide seniors with compassionate, skilled assistance on a temporary or permanent basis. Here are some tips from senior home care specialists in New Jersey on evaluating if your loved one will benefit from these services.

Evaluate your loved one’s care needs 

It’s always difficult for families to accept that an elderly loved one is starting to struggle with their health and day-to-day living, but at the same time it’s important to put their quality of life first. Here are some signs to look for that indicate the senior in your life may need a helping hand:

  • More regular or more severe falls.
  • Unusual weight loss.
  • Unwillingness to prepare meals, old or expired food in their home, burned pots and pans, etc.
  • Increased car accidents or unwillingness to drive.
  • Home becoming much more cluttered and unclean.
  • Loss of interest in activities that used to be eagerly anticipated
  • Withdrawal from socializing with friends and family.
  • Bills, paperwork, etc. piling up and being neglected.
  • Increasing forgetfulness and confusion, including forgetting to take medication, appointments and social engagements.

Home health agencies offer flexible, affordable care 

The main advantage of senior home care services like HomeWorks, which is offered by United Methodist Communities of New Jersey, is that you can get your loved one exactly the amount of care they require without having to move. You can even set the hours that your caregiver will work, making it easier for family caregivers to manage their own lives and careers while still supporting their elderly loved ones.

Caregivers are assigned according to your loved one’s needs and can take care of housekeeping and meal preparation, in addition to skilled nursing assistance and Alzheimer’s care. In addition to medical care and in-home respite services, we also offer pastoral care for spiritual and emotional support in the home.

For more information on our in-home care services or to get a home health aide in New Jersey, please contact us today at https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/.

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/consider-home-care-services/

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What is Sitting Disease?

Unlike its name, Sitting Disease isn’t an actual disease – it’s a term used to cover the more than 30 chronic health conditions associated with sedentary behavior, like sitting.

Statistics from the Mayo Clinic show that Americans are spending more and more time indulging these behaviors, with 50% to 70% of people spending more than 6 hours a day in a sitting position and 20% to 35% of people spending more than 4 hours a day in front of the television. The study found direct links between a sedentary lifestyle and a shortened lifespan – in fact, by reducing your TV time to less than two hours a day, you can add 1.4 years onto your lifespan!

These concerns are even more serious for sedentary elderly people, as they are more at risk than ever before of developing serious health conditions, including diabetes, physical disabilities, cognitive decline, osteoporosis, heart disease and even certain cancers.

Staying active through your senior years 

Senior Chinese Couple Walking In Park During Summer
Walking is great for your health and by far the most popular low-impact exercise for older adults.

While the best way to prevent Sitting Disease is to live a more active life throughout your adult years, there is still much that you can do to reduce your risks as a senior. With the help of a specialist, you can determine how much exercise you need and how vigorously you need to exercise in order to gain a good fitness level. It’s also important to remember that ‘exercise’ doesn’t only mean going for a run – there are plenty of alternative physical activities for seniors that are safe and fun, for example:

  • Dance classes
  • Gardening
  • Aerobics
  • Yoga
  • Nature walks

When it comes to fighting Sitting Disease, it’s also the little things that matter, from taking the stairs instead of waiting for the lift to choosing a walk to the shops over an hour in front of the television.

By getting into a routine of regular exercise, seniors also benefit from healthy weight loss, muscle development, and even stress reduction, all bringing a better quality of life.

Affordable and compassionate help for seniors at home

At United Methodist Communities, we strive to offer the very best quality senior care options, from assisted living to in-home senior care through our HomeWorks program. This program is about assisting seniors 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 at home care for seniors, contact us today.

This post originally appeared on https://umcommunities.org/blog/what-is-sitting-disease/

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