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The Potential Alzheimer’s Cause We May Have Been Missing

Still ringing true today, Thomas Edison’s words hold special meaning regarding the cause and a cure for Alzheimer’s disease, “I have not failed 10,000 times. I have not failed once. I have succeeded in proving that those 10,000 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work”.  New clinical studies and research give hope to the search for a cure. The newest results may have changed everything.

Check out the newest Alzheimer’s research:

Christian Holscher, a neuroscientist, advises that in order to win the war against Alzheimer’s, we have to look beyond the plaque theory. Alois Alzheimer, the founder of the disease, researched the plaques found exclusively in older brains. He, however, mentioned there’s no evidence to prove they cause the disease. Yet researchers have persistently honed in on these plaques as the culprit, only to come up empty-handed.

Holscher proposes a unique theory that should be explored instead: the link between Alzheimer’s and insulin. We know that those with type 2 diabetes have a greater risk. We also know that brain cells require insulin to grow and stay healthy. Could insulin deficits lead to the types of irreparable neuron damage exhibited in Alzheimer’s? Brain tissue from Alzheimer’s patients shows how insulin loses effectiveness in brain cell growth in both diabetic and non-diabetic patients. This led scientists to the conclusion that testing diabetic treatments on people that have Alzheimer’s is worth a try. 

Comprehensive Home Care will continue to closely follow any and all developments in the continuous search for an end to the disease. If you’re currently caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s feel free to contact us.  Our home care team is highly skilled and experienced in effectively managing a number of the more challenging aspects of the disease while supporting those affected to live life to their fullest potential. 

Contact us online or at 704-333-5214 to obtain more Alzheimer’s disease resources and to schedule a totally free consultation, right in the comfort of home, for more information on our professional in-home care assistance.

Check out How to Recognize the Signs of Dementia to learn more about the warning signs and symptoms of dementia.

Tips on Recognizing the Signs of Elder Abuse

While elder abuse is something that we would never expect to occur, it’s a tragically common occurrence in the U.S. Elder abuse occurs in many forms, from physical, emotional, or neglect. Because elder abuse is often a silent problem, it’s essential for families and friends of seniors to be aware of the signs of elder abuse to protect their loved ones.

Check out some of the warning signs that may indicate elder abuse:


Physical Abuse

  • Signs of injury like broken bones, bruises, welts, or scars especially if they appear symmetrically on two sides of the body or on the wrists
  • Drug overdoses or regularly missed medications
  • Broken eyeglasses
  • Caregivers refusing to allow the senior to be seen alone

Emotional Abuse

  • Behavior that mimics dementia, such as rocking, or mumbling to oneself
  • Controlling behavior from the caregiver such as:
    • Yelling at or threatening
    • Humiliating or ridiculing
    • Ignoring the senior
    • Isolating the senior from friends and family

Neglect:

  • Physical problems, such as bed sores and unhealthy weight loss or malnutrition
  • Unsanitary living conditions, such as neglected hygiene and a messy living area
  • Unsuitable clothing or covering for the weather
  • Unsafe living conditions, such as no heat or running water; faulty electrical wiring or other fire hazards
  • Desertion of the senior at a public place

The early signs of elder abuse may be difficult to recognize and may also appear to be symptoms of a disease or from increased frailty. A caregiver who is abusing the senior may also explain signs of abuse away. To help prevent abuse, make a point to call and visit senior loved ones often and be on the lookout for any changes in the senior’s personality or behavior. If any signs of elder abuse are witnessed or suspected, they should be reported immediately.

Comprehensive Home Care’s Charlotte, NC respite care services can help families keep senior loved ones safe, happy, and healthy. As the top-rated home care agency in the Charlotte area, we can provide home care services, Alzheimer’s and dementia care, and services for people with disabilities to ensure that seniors are safe and well cared for. Contact us here or call us at 704-333-5214 for a professional assessment and to learn how we can protect your loved one.

Check out Is Your Senior Loved One at Risk for Elder Abuse? for more tips on recognizing the signs.

Is Your Senior Loved One at Risk for Elder Abuse?

Helping seniors stay healthy and safe is the main goal of our Charlotte, NC senior care professionals. For this reason, it’s essential that we discuss a difficult topic, elder abuse. The CDC estimates that around 500,000 older adults are abused or neglected every year in the U.S. and many other cases are unreported each year. As a family or friend of a senior receiving care, it’s important to be mindful of the risk factors.

Be aware of the following risk factors associated with elder abuse:

  • Dependency on others. Seniors are sometimes reluctant to speak up about any abuse because they may fear that a different caregiver will not meet their needs.
  • Decreased physical health and mobility. Seniors with certain diseases and disabilities may be at higher a risk of abuse because he/she may not be able to verbalize the abuse.
  • History of abuse. If someone has a history of abuse there is an increased risk for abuse in their later years. This is the case especially when a victim of abuse by the senior is now their primary caregiver.
  • Social isolation. Social isolation often occurs when a senior loses a spouse or lives at a distance from family and friends. Abusers often try to keep seniors isolated by doing the following:
    • Refusing to apply for economic aid or services.
    • Resisting outside help.
    • Changing social and healthcare providers frequently to make it difficult for the senior to assess their health status.
    • Controlling contact with family and friends.
  • Family caregiver stress or burnout. Overwhelmed caregivers may start to lash out at the seniors in their care.

Make sure to call or visit as often as possible to also play an active role in their care. Comprehensive Home Care can also help as we understand the importance of a senior’s health and safety. Each member of our Charlotte, NC senior care team has passed a thorough background check, reference checks, and an in-depth personal interview to ensure they meet high standards. All of our caregivers are licensed certified nursing assistants (CNAs) in good standing in the state of North Carolina, so rest assured your loved one is in capable, experienced hands. Contact us today to learn more about our Charlotte home care services.

Now that you’re prepared for this threat, check out The Latest in Helping Elderly Parents Avoid Phone Scams.

The Latest in Helping Elderly Parents Avoid Phone Scams

Phone scams geared toward the elderly are nothing new, with an astonishing $36 billion lost each year to financial abuse. Con artists are always doing their best to create new scams to swindle money. Older adults specifically are constant targets of con artists, for a number of reasons. 

Check out the latest phone scam to be on the lookout for:


The latest senior con circulating is difficult for most to detect until it’s too late. The company Utility Savings Expert that claim to cut seniors’ utility, phone, cable, and other regular bills in half. They request seniors to share account information from the bill they’d prefer to reduce. They actually pay off the balance in full, with the understanding that the senior will reimburse half of the cost by wire transfer only – no checks or bank cards accepted. After the older adult’s funds have already been received, the organization reverses the charge to the phone or utility company, making the senior liable once more for the full amount – and the additional 50% they’ve paid to the scammers.

So, how do you protect your older family members from falling prey to very believable scams? Make sure your loved one never takes part in dealing with an unfamiliar business; another red flag occurs when a business asks for a wire transfer as payment. Screen calls and only answering known and trustworthy callers. Hang up immediately on anyone who calls asking for personal or financial information.

Providers of the home care Charlotte, NC families can trust, Comprehensive Home Care can alleviate senior loneliness and reduce the chance of a senior scam with our professional home care companionship and caregiving assistance. Call us at 704-333-5214 or contact us online for more information on how our Charlotte home services are able to keep your senior family members secure and safe.

Now that you are informed and can prevent your loved one from falling prey to phone scams, check out Tips on Recognizing the Signs of Elder Abuse to prevent another risk your senior loved one’s face.

Caring for Older Parents? Ask These Questions Before They Move in

Probably the most admirable decision an adult can make is to open up their house to an older parent. Our parents took care of us, so it seems obvious to return the favor if they need a safe place to live. However, there are a number of things to consider when caring for older parents. 

Check out these key questions to ask when caring for older parents and deciding where they should live:

Is there sufficient space?

For example, consider how making room for the parent can lead to a change in another family member’s accommodations.

Is the home safe and efficient for the elderly’s needs?

Walk through your home and try to see it through the viewpoint of your parent. Are pathways clear between the senior’s bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, etc.? Are there any tripping dangers, such as throw rugs? Should you install grab bars, an elevated toilet seat, or other home care equipment? Are there any stairs to maneuver? Is the house wheelchair-accessible?

Will someone be home each day?

Isolation and the dangers of being left alone will still be a problem if you and your spouse work outside the home.

Is everyone completely agreeable with the plan?

While you may be thoroughly convinced of your senior parent’s new living arrangements, feelings of reluctance, or resentment on the part a family member can create stress.

Are you prepared to handle increasing care needs?

While they may just need a little help currently, disease progression and the normal frailties associated with aging will change the amount of care needed. Think about the potential difficulties.

Is your parent okay with this decision?

Giving up status as “head of the household” is extremely challenging for some seniors. It takes careful planning to help your parent maintain self-esteem, autonomy, and a sense of control.

If you’re feeling uncertain about your ability to look after your elderly loved one, another choice may be better suited to both the senior and your family. One option to consider is the addition of a home care provider, such as a Comprehensive Home Care specialist. Our knowledgeable caregivers partner with families in Charlotte so that seniors stay safe and thrive inside their homes – whether that involves a few hours each week of companionship to promote socialization, personal care assistance for safe bathing and dressing, help with household chores and meal preparation, or round-the-clock, live-in care. We provide a free in-home consultation to learn about your senior loved one and then suggest a strategy of care to handle all concerns. Call us today at 704-333-5214 or contact us online to find out more about our Charlotte, NC, senior care services.

Check out Planning a Family Meeting to Discuss Home Care on tips to discuss the change with your family.

Tips to Avoid Common Parkinson’s Complications

Many seniors with Parkinson’s disease receive the largest part of their care at home from loved ones. Comprehensive Home Care understands the unique concerns of those who care for seniors with Parkinson’s and want you to know you’re not alone! We can provide respite care to help you and your loved one during this difficult time.

It’s helpful to keep these Parkinson’s tips in mind:


Nutrition: A healthy diet helps reduce cell loss in a person with Parkinson’s disease. Consuming antioxidants, found in green tea, blueberries, broccoli, spinach, beans, and certain types of nuts, can fight against oxidative stress. 

Chewing and Swallowing: Those with Parkinson’s disease may have difficulty chewing and swallowing. So, each person caring for a loved one with Parkinson’s should learn the Heimlich maneuver to be prepared.

Preventing Falls: It’s also common to have trouble with balance, so walking may be difficult. It’s crucial to assess the home surroundings and make modifications to reduce the risk of falls. Installing items like customized toilet seats and grab bars where appropriate.

Anxiety and Depression: Reducing the risk for depression and anxiety is a crucial factor in the battle against Parkinson’s disease. Keep a close eye for signs of depression, and make sure he/she sees a doctor as soon as possible if signs are noticed.

Medications: Parkinson’s treatments may have a number of side effects, so be sure the doctor informs you of anticipated ones. Some types of medication may cause hallucinations or nightmares, for example.

We invite you to explore Comprehensive Home Care’s Charlotte home care services to discover how respite care can lead to a better quality of life for both your loved one and the family members who are providing care. By partnering with our professional Charlotte home care team to assist with some of the more routine aspects of caregiving, family members have the opportunity to spend more quality time together. Contact us at 704-333-5214 to learn more. 

Check out The 5 Stages of Parkinson’s Disease and How Home Care Can Help for more advice.

The 5 Stages of Parkinson’s Disease and How Home Care Can Help

Parkinson’s disease is more prevalent than MS, muscular dystrophy, and ALS combined. 600,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease each year, seven to ten million people worldwide have already been diagnosed. There are five main stages of progression, though each case is different.

Learn the symptoms of the five stages of Parkinson’s disease:


1st Stage: The first stage is early-stage Parkinson’s where mild symptoms occur and may be noticeable to your loved ones.

  • Symptoms are bothersome but not disabling.
  • Typically symptoms occur on one side of the body.
  • Tremors or uncontrollable shaking may occur in one limb.
  • Facial, posture, and/or balance may also change.

2nd StageIn the second stage of Parkinson’s, the person begins to display an inability to complete standard physical tasks.

  • Symptoms cause minimal disability.
  • Symptoms occur on both sides of the body.
  • Equilibrium and posture changes, as well.

3rd StageThe third stage is moderate Parkinson’s disease and a higher degree of disability becomes apparent.

  • Moderate dysfunction occurs.
  • Movements become slowed.
  • Balance decreases so standing becomes more difficult.

4th StageThe fourth stage is indicative of advanced Parkinson’s.

  • Severe symptoms cause an inability to complete daily tasks so it may be difficult for them to live alone.
  • Movements become rigidity or sluggish in this stage.
  • Tremors may begin to lessen or disappear altogether for unknown reasons.

5th StageThe fifth and final stage usually takes over physical movements.

  • Symptoms cause a decline in vitality in both body and mind.
  • Changes in equilibrium and strength occur so walking and standing become difficult.

Our skilled caregivers are fully trained and can help those with Parkinson’s disease to experience a better quality of life, right in the comfort of their home. Comprehensive Home Care can help with daily personal care, transportation to doctors appointments, running errands, light housework, or meal preparation. Our companionship can brighten their day. Our home care is customized to each person’s needs and preferences. Call us any time at 704-333-5214 to learn more. 

Check out How to Know If Your Loved One Is Suffering From Parkinson’s to learn more.

Senior Fitness Tips

Participating in an ongoing fitness plan is challenging at any age. All of us have made excuses for not exercising and aging makes it even more difficult to commit to a fitness plan. Our home care experts want to help you understand the factors that go into building a fitness plan for your loved one.

Consider the following factors involved in senior fitness:


Self-confidence. It’s natural for older adults to become overwhelmed with the idea of achieving fitness goals. Have them start slowly with easier exercises and then progress gradually. Continue to provide ongoing support throughout the program.

Attitude. Attitude is so important when it comes to staying physically fit. If approached negatively it will be so much harder to stick to a fitness program. Choose activities that will be enjoyable and that they will look forward to.

Pain. They should avoid overdoing it and pushing their body to discomfort or pain.

Disabilities. Older adults with physical or cognitive impairments can and should stay active within their ability level. Ask their doctor for a referral to a personal trainer or physical therapist who can create a specialized fitness program.

Fear of Injury/Balance Problems. Utilize a variety of different assistive products to improve safety.

Financial Issues. Exercising doesn’t have to cost a lot of money. Walking and other simple activities can be effective with little to no cost.

Illness or Fatigue. Workouts should be tailored to match their energy level and the intensity can be increased over time.

The key to ongoing success with a fitness program is to make sure the senior is comfortable and feels safe with the plan. If any pain is felt in muscles or bones following an exercise the intensity can be decreased. Make sure to check with their doctor if the pain or discomfort continues and/or intensifies. Comprehensive Home Care will work with your loved one’s doctor to develop a safe fitness plan to help build strength, independence, and quality of life. Contact us at 704-333-5214 for more senior fitness tips and to learn about our home care services.

Check out Elderly Exercise Ideas to Help Seniors Thrive to find the best exercises for your loved one.

Elderly Exercise Ideas to Help Seniors Thrive

As we age, exercise becomes more essential. It’s vital for overall health and well-being to maintain as active a lifestyle as possible. While it may be challenging for seniors who struggle with mobility, there are still exercise options available to help boost strength, resistance, and flexibility.

Always check first with the senior’s primary physician to receive recommendations and approval for an elderly exercise program that is safe and will benefit the senior the most. When they first try the exercises, bear in mind that even as little as a few minutes each day, repeated several times throughout the day, can have a great impact on their health. Motivating your senior loved one to begin and stick with an exercise program is the key to success.

Consider the following elderly exercises:


Aerobics. There are many aerobics options for seniors including water aerobics and dance cardio. If full body movements aren’t an option, there are exercises that can be done while seated to help build cardio strength.

Resistance Exercises. To build strength in muscle tissue, exercising with resistance weights, like elastic bands, can help. The bands come in a variety of tensile strength levels. Even a day per week of strength training can help reduce the risk of injury.

Flexibility Exercises. Stretching is great for improving flexibility and freedom of movement. Search for yoga classes at a local senior or recreation center.

Dementia Exercises. In the early stages of dementia, there are a variety of exercise options. The same exercise can be modified and continued as the stages progress. Repetition is often comforting to seniors with dementia, so activities such as folding laundry, walking, and riding a stationary bike, can be helpful for both the physical and mental state.

The following suggestions can ensure that he or she will look forward to the program:

  • Engage in the exercise program with your loved one. It’s more fun to exercise with a buddy.
  • Or hire a trusted caregiver from the Comprehensive Home Care team to engage in the elderly exercise program with your loved one.
  • Turn on his or her favorite, upbeat music while exercising.
  • Set aside dedicated time each day for exercise, and make sure to keep it a priority.
  • Consider offering incentives or rewards for attaining milestones for motivation.

For more recommendations on helping seniors increase activity levels, contact Comprehensive Home Care. Our professional in-home caregivers are experienced in helping older adults thrive and enhance their overall health and wellbeing. There’s nothing we love more than knowing that the seniors in our care are healthy and enjoying life to the fullest! Contact us at 704-333-5214 for more information on setting up an elderly exercise program to improve life for your senior loved one!

Now that you have the information necessary to plan the best fitness routine. Check out Benefits of Laughter in Senior’s Health.

Is Elderly Hoarding Impacting Your Senior Loved One? Here’s How to Help.

Do you have a loved one who struggles with elderly hoarding? Is this situation becoming increasingly difficult to manage? Are you concerned?

Pathological or compulsive hoarding, officially known as disposophobia, is much more than just collecting or living with clutter. It’s the excessive gathering of objects, regardless of whether these objects have any value or use. The idea of giving away or throwing away any of the items, even trash, results in great stress.

Elderly hoarding causes several problems. Too many objects in a senior’s living space can cause problems with hygiene – both in the home itself and with personal hygiene if cleaning facilities are blocked. Extreme clutter can lead to social isolation, due to the person’s embarrassment about the state of the home and his or her inability to clean up sufficiently to go out. The clutter can also be a serious safety hazard. Clutter can result in falls, destroy home foundations, and block exits in the event of an emergency.

Helping someone who struggles with elderly hoarding can be difficult. Those who hoard place an extreme amount of value on their possessions. Clearing anything away can be painful.

If you have a loved one who struggles with elderly hoarding, the tips below may help:


Try not to judge the person. It may be difficult, but if your senior loved one doesn’t feel judged, he or she may be more likely to work with you. Avoid statements such as “What a mess!” or “How can you possibly live like this?”

Use upbeat language. If you see any improvements at all, no matter how slight, such as a path from one room to another that is wider than it was before, congratulate them on trying to make things safer. If you notice a trash bag with trash to go out, let your loved one know that this is wonderful progress. Whenever there is something to praise, do so: “I can imagine how hard it was to fill that trash bag. I’m so happy you were able to do that.” You can also point out the nice things in the home, such as a beautiful painting, or an unusual decoration.

Never argue. Seniors who hoard have their reasons and arguing usually results in them shutting down the conversation. You don’t have to agree with what the person says, but arguing may result in them becoming defensive, pushing further away from a solution. If an argument is ensuing, it may be time to take a walk around the block or call it a day.

Understand that some things are just too important for your loved one to part with. When cleaning out a home, it’s important to remember that not everything has to go. We all have certain items that are dear to us. Recognize and acknowledge this.

Comprehensive Home Care’s home care experts have seen what hoarding can do and our experienced caregivers know how to help. As the top-rated home care agency in the Charlotte area, we can provide in-home care services, including friendly companionship to help seniors feel accepted and socially involved. Contact us at 704-333-5214 for a professional assessment to learn how we can help your senior loved one.

Check out 4 Situations When Home Care is Beneficial to learn more.

Signs that Your Loved One May Need Senior Home Care

“I do NOT want to move to a nursing home!” This is an often-heard sentiment expressed by many seniors, even when they’re beginning to experience some difficulty managing at home on their own. And who can blame them? Home is where older adults feel most comfortable and safe. They know where everything is and they can enjoy their own individual routine and they may have friends and family who live close by, who enhance their quality of life. But, if you have concerns about your senior loved one’s ability to remain living safely at home, it may be time to assess the best possible solution, senior home care.

Consider the following questions to determine if your loved one could benefit from senior home care:


 

Weight Loss

  • Has your senior loved one lost weight unintentionally over the past several months?
  • Are they able to pick up groceries and prepare meals?
  • Do they prepare meals safely, remembering to turn off the oven or stove?
  • Do they complain about how food tastes?
  • Are they drinking sufficient amounts of water and other fluids during the day to prevent dehydration, especially during the hot summer months?

Personal Hygiene

  • Is your senior loved one adequately maintaining their hygiene?
  • Can they take care of laundry, bathing, grooming, and toileting needs sufficiently?

Medications

  • Does your senior loved one take medications?
  • Do they take them exactly as prescribed?
  • Can they read the labels and understand what each medicine is for?
  • Are they physically able to swallow pills, or otherwise use them as they are intended (i.e. creams, drops, etc.)?

Safety

  • Is the home free of clutter, which could be a tripping or falling hazard?
  • Could your loved one call for help if they were to fall?
  • Are there grab bars in the shower/bath, and are banisters and handrails on stairways fastened securely?
  • Is there sufficient lighting to allow them to safely get up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom or kitchen?
  • Do you notice any cuts, bruises, scrapes, or burns that could have been caused by a fall or other unexplained circumstance?
  • Is the kitchen clean enough to safely prepare food?
  • Is your loved one taking multiple medications from multiple doctors and/or does they use multiple pharmacies?

Emotional, Psychological and Cognitive

  • Does your loved one seem depressed or anxious?
  • Are they staying social as much as possible, whether in person or through the Internet or by phone?
  • If he/she is religious, are they continuing to attend services or programs available?
  • Are they still enjoying hobbies that interested them before?
  • Are they forgetful? Unusually loud or agitated?
  • Are their finances in order?

The list of questions may seem overwhelming at first, but our senior home care services team can help. Our professional home care team can evaluate your senior loved one’s situation and provide suggestions and solutions, giving you and your loved one peace of mind. Our trained home care staff can provide companionship, perform light housekeeping tasks, prepare nutritious meals, among other helpful tasks. We can even coordinate services between various healthcare providers.

Contact us at 704-333-5214 for a free in-home assessment and see how we can help your loved one.

Check out Perks of Home Care to learn how a care provider can help.

4 Situations When Home Care is Beneficial

There are several different ways for a loved one to receive care. A home care company can give you the medical attention your patient needs while staying in a place that is comfortable and familiar.

Here are a few situations when home care is beneficial:

You cannot afford a nursing home.

If you cannot afford a nursing home, then home care might be the best option as it is more affordable.

You want your family to stay together.

Allowing the patient to stay at home close to other family members is a great benefit of home care.

You want more personalized care.

When you hire a Comprehensive Home Care specialist a nurse will be assigned to assist your disabled family member. This will result in a better patient/nurse relationship that’s more beneficial for both people. Your loved one will know that the nurse assisting them will know exactly what they need, and the nurse will have fewer patients to work with.

You only need a nurse for a few hours a day.

People in nursing homes receive constant assistance, however, some only need assistance for a few hours a day. So if you want your family to play a bigger role in the assistance of your disabled family member, then you have that option.

These are a few situations when home care can be very beneficial. It will give you a lot of freedom, so you can be sure you are making the best choice for your loved one.  Consider Comprehensive Home Care when searching for the best option for your loved one. We offer many different types of services and will give you the service you need.

Check out Signs that Your Loved One May Need Senior Home Care to learn more.

Transitioning to Assisted Living

When your loved one transitions into an assisted living facility, using a home care provider, or even moving into your home they may experience challenges that arise within their first couple of days through their first year. It is normal for any senior to experience a challenge here or there especially since they are moving into a new environment.

Consider the following common challenges seniors face when transitioning to assisted living:


A loss of independence.

One of the biggest challenges is the feeling of a loss of independence. While this is not true, it is common for seniors who are new to the assisted living environment to feel as though they are giving up their life or that they have surrendered themselves.

To overcome this challenge, it is important for you to speak with your loved one and let them know that their life has not changed much other than where they live. They will still be able to do the things they love, make their own food, and live their own life. The biggest difference between an assisted living facility and home life is that your loved one will be receiving care when they need it.

Adjusting to their new life.

Another common challenge that the elderly face is adjusting to their new life. Your family member must understand that they live in a community now and they are not alone. It is common for your loved one to feel as though they are lonely even though they are not. Some need time to get used to the changes from having their meals cooked to living in a smaller area. It does take time, but they will be able to overcome it and adjust.

Understanding change in their bodies.

Lastly, the elderly are often faced with challenges when it comes to changes that happen in their body. Some experience outbursts and don’t want to accept the changes. This is normal and it is important to listen and reassure them that they are in the best place for this.

It is important for you to provide the support needed to help your family member get through this time. You need to make sure that your loved one’s needs can be met with ease. Comprehensive Home Care can provide guidance during this time. Contact us here or call us at 704.333.5214.

Check out these key questions to ask when deciding if your loved one should move in with you.

How Do I Know if My Loved One Might Benefit from Home Care?

As time goes on, you may notice your loved one is not quite what they used to be. There are countless reasons why there may begin going through changes. These changes can seriously affect your loved one’s ability to live alone. In this case, they may truly benefit from home care.

Here are some things to consider when deciding if home care is the right move to make for your loved one:


When they are becoming more forgetful.

While forgetting something every now and then can be okay, when your loved one is constantly forgetting, it is a rise for concern. Even if it is small things like checking the mail, you may want to start paying more attention. When they are forgetting to throw out old food, forgetting appointments, and other similar things they should not continue living by themselves.

If they seem to not be taking care of themselves.

When a loved one seems to not be properly taking care of themselves, this is another rise for concern. This may mean that they are either struggling to do or just forgetting to do simple tasks.  By turning to a home care specialist you will have peace of mind.

If they can no longer drive safely.

When you start to notice their car getting more dents and scratches, it may be a sign that they are struggling behind the wheel. This is not only putting themselves at risk but other people as well.

When you are starting to get worried about your loved one’s well being have a conversation with them or their doctor and see what the cause could be. Comprehensive Home Care can also ensure they are getting the proper care from professionals who know what to do. Contact Comprehensive Home Care to get a free home assessment and learn more about the services we offer.

Check out Is It Just a Case of the Blues? Mental Illness in Seniors Is More Common Than You May Think to read about a condition that would benefit from the use of a home care specialist.

Tips to Start the Care Provider Search

The care provider search is no easy task. And deciding on the best care for a loved one is an extremely important, sometimes urgent, decision. Some struggle with knowing where to even begin.

Here are some tips to start the care provider search:

Assess the needs of your loved one.

In order to find the right care provider, you must first know what your loved one’s needs are. Do they need someone only to help with meals, baths, and cooking? Or do they need 24-hour care? Answering these questions will help you narrow down the type of specialist you need and set you on the right path.

Do your research and ask questions.

Put together a list of providers that meet the requirements. Interview each provider in person, over the phone just won’t cut it. You can tell a lot about a person by meeting them and making eye contact. Before the meeting, make sure that you put together a list of questions to ask. These questions should include things such as quality of care provided, fees, services provided, and hours the provider is able to work.

Check references.

It is very important to check references and do a background check on any provider you are considering. This person is going to be taking care of your loved one and you want to be sure that it is safe. Request the names of two or three different clients and talk to each of them if possible. Ask how the provider treated their loved ones and if they would employ them again.

Adjust and observe.

Your job does not end after you have found a provider. Your loved one’s needs may change, so it’s best to continue to play an active role. You should also keep an eye on how the provider gets along with your loved one until you are sure that they are a good fit.

From assessing the needs of your loved one to not being afraid to ask questions, these tips will truly help the process. Comprehensive Home Care can help in this process, as well. Contact us here or call us at 704.333.5214 to see how we can assist.

Check out Senior Living Options to learn about the different options available to you and your loved one.

Signs Your Loved One’s Dementia is Worsening

The thought of a loved one developing dementia is scary to anyone, yet it happens all too frequently. You need to know the signs and symptoms to look for so that you know when your loved one’s dementia worsens. These symptoms do not always mean that the patient is in the later stages.

When your loved one’s dementia worsens you’ll notice these signs:


Memory loss

Memory loss in the later stages of dementia is usually severe. The patient may not recognize people that are extremely close to them. It is also possible that your loved one will start thinking you are someone from their past.

Problems communicating

In the later stages of dementia, your loved one may have a hard time communicating with you or stop communicating altogether. They may utter a single word every now and then or even cry out. Remember, however, that verbal language is only one form of communication and your loved one may be able to tell you what they want through gestures.

Weight loss

In many cases, the weight loss can become drastic in the later stages. It is possible for your loved one to forget how to chew and swallow; at this point, you will need to look further into dementia home care if you have not already.

Behavior that is Unusual

In the later stages of dementia, many patients may act strangely. This puzzling behavior will be different for every patient. However, here are some of the most common unusual behaviors.

  • The patient may become agitated and confused mostly in the afternoon and the early evening. This is often referred to as sundowning.
  • Often the patient can become aggressive and aggravated if they feel threatened or they are confused about what is going on around them.
  • It is possible for the patient to have hallucinations.
  • It is possible for the patient to start feeling restless and need more exercise.

These are just a few of the signs to look for when your loved one’s dementia is worsening. Just remember that these symptoms do not have to mean that your loved one is in the latter stages, their symptoms are just worsening and you may need to get professional help. Click here to learn about the dementia services Comprehensive Home Care provides. Contact us here or call us at 704.333.5214 to speak with a specialist.

Check out Three Signs That Your Family Member’s Dementia Requires Outside Help to learn more.

Planning a Family Meeting to Discuss Home Care

Home care is used to provide the care of a loved one who is unable to fully provide for themselves, yet still stable and mentally sound enough to be at home and out of the nursing home. For many people, this type of care provides far greater happiness and prolongs their lifetime and that is just the start of the exciting benefits. Even still there are drawbacks that must be considered if this is a method of care that you are considering. Before deciding if home care is the right option for your loved one it is important to plan a family meeting with the immediate members of your family. This is a big decision and everyone should be able to voice their thoughts, concerns, and hopes freely.

Preparing for a family meeting


When preparing for your family meeting make sure that you inform family members as far in advance as possible. Everyone’s schedules differ, and sometimes it can be difficult to find a time when everyone is able to come together. When informing family members of the meeting you should plan for a two-hour time slot, although it might take slightly less time. Once a time has been arranged, choose a location for the meeting. If your home is large enough this is perfectly fine. It should be comfortable so everyone is able to talk openly. Make sure that the loved one being considered for home care is present during the meeting. After all, it is him or her that will be receiving the care so their say really matters the most. Also, the home care agency caregiver or staff member should be present to help you learn more about the service and the different options available.

Things to discuss at the family meeting


 

  • Cost. Insurance will usually not cover the costs of this type of care so it is the responsibility of loved ones to cover the fees. Consider how you will pay, how much each person can put forth, etc. Also, take into consideration during your meeting:
  • Duration. How long/often will you require home care for your loved one? You can arrange services for part-time or full-time, or on as –needed basis.
  • Capability of the senior. Is your loved one still able to partially caring for themselves? Patients who are best-suited for home services are those who still have such capabilities.
  • Needs of the senior. Discuss with the caregiver the needs of your loved ones. Caregivers can provide a little or they can provide a lot, depending upon the need. Ensure the chosen agency is capable of handling those needs. Not all agencies provide the same levels of care.
  • Questions/concerns. Give each family member time to ask their own questions as they arise.

Comprehensive Home Care can provide help during these meetings. Contact us here or call at 704.333.5214 with any questions or care needs.

Check out Diffusing Family Tensions for more support.

Warning Signs of Dementia

If you are noticing new symptoms in your loved one it’s important to know what the cause could be. For example, knowing the warning signs of dementia in your loved one is extremely important so you can catch the disease early and start getting them treatment.

Below are some of the most common signs of dementia:

Memory loss

Everyone forgets things occasionally. However, one of the most common signs of dementia is a significant memory loss. This includes forgetting information just learned, forgetting important dates, and increasingly needing to have notes on hand to remember information.

Struggling to complete tasks

Another indication has to do with the tasks people manage on a daily basis. Those who have difficulty completing familiar tasks at home, at work, or even during leisure activities. This may include getting to locations, managing finances, or playing a game.

Problem-solving

Another clear indication has to do with problem-solving skills. Many people begin to develop complications related to tracking information, concentrating, or keeping track of payments. They may struggle with these tasks even if they have been performed previously.

Time and place confusion

Over time, those with dementia will begin to struggle with issues related to time and place. For example, they may lose track of dates or be unable to remember what time it is, lose blocks of time, forget how they got somewhere, or when they have an appointment.

Speaking or writing difficulties

Often,  those with dementia will pull out of social activities. This may be due to their difficulty in speaking and carrying on in conversation and just give up. They may repeat themselves several times, writing becomes difficult to do, they may forget what something is called, or they may struggle to remember a word for something that is common or that they use each day.

If your loved one has some of these or other warning signs of dementia, it’s time to reach out for help. Getting help from Comprehensive Home Care can be one of the most reassuring steps you can take for your loved one and for yourself. Contact us by clicking here or calling 704-333-5214.

Check out What to Do If You Think Your Loved One Has Alzheimer’s to learn more.

How Often Should I Check On My Aging Loved One?

If you have an aging loved you may realize you need to periodically look in on them in order to make sure that they are okay. Knowing how often to check up on them can be complicated but there are certain factors to help you know.

In many instances, a combination of outside help and periodic check-ins may be necessary in order to make sure that a loved one remains happy and healthy. This allows them to get by on their own with some assistance from a home care company. This is true for many medical conditions. For example, some may still be able to stay on their own as long as they have some outside help. That’s where a quality home care agency, like Comprehensive Home Care, can help. Comprehensive Home Care can check in on a family’s senior loved one, providing home care services or respite care.

In general, the need to check up on an aging loved one will depend on multiple factors. Such factors include:

  • An existing medical conditions as well as any recent medical problems such as a fall or other healthcare issue.
  • Whether or not the relative has access to a community that encourages strong bonds between residents. Many elderly people have developed strong ties to other members of their community. For example, they may be cherished for their gentle love of children and tasty contributions to the local church bake sale each year.
  • How far away their loved ones live. It can be particularly important to make sure a relative is cared for even when you cannot be physically present. In such cases, the person may want to set up a series of ways in which they can check up on a loved father or favorite aunt. This may include a combination of hired help from a home care agency that is in the area.

Comprehensive Home Care can assist the relative with certain tasks such as meal preparation and driving. Contact us here or call us at 704.333.5213 to see how we can help.

Check out Transitioning to Assisted Living to learn about the common challenges seniors face when transitioning to assisted living. The stage they are in in the transition may determine how often you should check in.

Diffusing Family Tensions

Sometimes family tensions arise when a family member needs assistance in the form of home care. However, when approached in the correct manner it is possible to resolve the tensions quickly. Tensions are typically due to the physical, financial, and emotional demands that come with providing care for a loved one.

Common causes of family tensions about home care include:


The burden of home care placed on one person.

A family member may feel the burden of the care when it is not evenly distributed throughout the family. If this happens, it is possible that the primary caregiver feels some resentment towards the rest of the family members.

The capabilities and condition of a loved one in home care.

For example, when you personally may think your loved one is no longer fit to drive, while others may disagree.

The financial matters of the home care.

Some family members may feel they cannot solely carry the burden due to financial restraints and need the support of the rest of the family.

Comprehensive Home Care can help you and your family find common ground to help ease the situation of any disagreements. We care about your family’s feelings and expectations, so we let each member of the family have a turn explaining their individual positions. All viewpoints are equally important, so compassion for one another’s circumstances is necessary.

Check out Long-Distance Caregiving for tips on caring for a loved one from far away.