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Preparing Your Home for A Senior Loved One

You’ve decided to have your elderly friend or family member move into your home so you can watch after them. Preparing your home for a senior loved one requires assessing the comfort, safety, and accessibility. Put yourself in their shoes. Think of how this change will affect him/her and what type of living space a person with their needs would require.

Consider the following when preparing your home for a senior loved one:


Consult your loved one’s physicians and care providers. People who know the specifics about their needs can shed light on changes that need to be made in the home. Do a walk through with a home care provider to ensure the home is adequately prepared.

Remove any falling hazards. Remove rugs, and clear the pathway to the kitchen, bedroom, and bathroom.

Go shopping. Purchase items such as non-slip mats for the shower, motion-sensing lights for the hallways, and workout equipment they could benefit from.

Make a list of home improvements. Hire a professional if necessary to complete the list. Such home improvements can include grab bars in bathrooms and ramps for wheelchair access.

Get organized. Put a list of emergency contacts on the refrigerator, keep important documents such as medical documents in a filing cabinet, and keep a calendar up-to-date with doctors’ appointments, when medication needs refilling, etc.

Comprehensive Home Care can help provide the necessary advice and tips on how to prepare for your specific situation. We provide a free in-home consultation to learn about your senior loved one and will suggest a strategy of care and any additional changes to the home. Call us today at 704-333-5214 or contact us online to find out more about our senior care services.

Living with Multiple Sclerosis in the Summertime

Summertime can be a difficult time for people living with Multiple Sclerosis. This is due to the fact that an increase in body temperatures causes MS symptoms to worsen. Such symptoms include weak legs, fatigue, impaired vision, and cognitive issues. However, certain preventative measures can be taken to keep cool and enjoy the summertime.

Tips for living with Multiple Sclerosis in the summertime include:

Stay hydrated. While this tip may seem essential for everyone during the summertime, it’s especially essential for those living with MS to drink plenty of water.

Dress cool. Wear light-colored, lightweight, and loose fitting clothes that will keep the body temperature from rising.

Avoid overexposure to sunlight. While avoiding the outdoors completely may be difficult, staying in the air conditioning or in the shade when the temperatures are too high is best.

Take a cool bath. If you feel overheated take a cool bath to help lower your body temperature and prevent your symptoms from worsening.

Take advantage of cooling products. Cooling vests, neck wraps, headbands, and wristbands are extremely useful. The MSAA Cooling Program offers these types of products.

Exercises. Replace outdoor exercises with indoor ones such as pool exercises. Or exercise outside in the morning and evening when the temperature is the lowest.

Comprehensive Home Care is here to help! For more information regarding Multiple Sclerosis, and to learn about the services we provide contact us here or by calling 704-333-5214.

Reducing Your Risk of Dementia

Dementia affects millions of people around the world, and the number of cases continues to rise. Alzheimer’s disease, specifically, affects a very large number of people living in the United States. Researchers are studying tirelessly to better understand dementia and ultimately find the cure. While the cure is still unknown, there are however certain things you can do to help reduce your risk of dementia.

Certain lifestyle changes that help reduce your risk of dementia include:

Get plenty of sleep. Studies show that sleep deprivation over time may increase the risk of Alzheimer’s.

Eat a healthy diet. Eat plenty of leafy vegetables, nuts, berries, beans, whole grains, fish, and poultry, as these are considered “brain healthy” foods.

Stay active. Doing exercises regularly is a great way to stay healthy overall and reduce the risks of dementia.

Exercise the brain. Doing puzzles, board games, taking a class, and reading are great activities to keep your brain in shape.

Maintain good heart health. Studies have shown that heart health plays a key role in brain health. Many people who suffer from dementia typically also have heart issues such as heart disease.

Avoid drinking too much alcohol. Heavy drinking negatively influences brain function for many reasons; one reason being that it negatively affects the vascular system and increases blood pressure.

If you’d like to learn more, the expert dementia and Alzheimer’s care providers at Comprehensive Home Care, are here to help. Call us at 704.333.5214 to see how we can assist.

Sources:

https://www.cbsnews.com/media/mind-diet-foods-avoid-alzheimers-boost-brain-health/

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320969.php

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 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 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 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 Parkinson’s, 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.

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.

What to Do If You Think Your Loved One Has Alzheimer’s

Alzheimer’s is a disease that few people ever feel comfortable talking about.  It’s an emotional thing to see your loved one slowly lose their grasp on their memory and surroundings.  You may feel helpless, powerless, confused.  You may not be sure where to look for answers, or what to do.  But, don’t worry you’re not alone in this.

Here are some suggestions that may help if you think your loved one has Alzheimer’s:


Take some time to figure it out

A major disease like Alzheimer’s can be terrifying to face, but don’t give up.  Talk to a doctor, and do your research.  The more you know, the more you are prepared to help.  If you do confirm that yes, it is Alzheimer’s, then take a few minutes, or a day if you need, to come to grips with it.  There’s a lot ahead of you, so make sure you’re mentally and emotionally prepared for it.

Weigh your options and responsibilities

Caring for someone with Alzheimer’s is a major commitment.  It will require you to invest a lot of time, money, and energy into seeing for the needs of your loved one.  It will be a large emotional strain.  If you feel like you can handle it, that you can fully invest in the needs of your loved one, then you need to start making plans.  If not, then you need to find another option for care.  In either case, you don’t have to rely only on your own strength and resources.

Look for help

Help is out there. Doctors can offer some medications and suggestions on specific care procedures.  Seek out family and friends to form a support network.  Also, there are many alternatives for care if you feel that you can’t do it by yourself.  Nursing homes can offer around-the-clock care but can be confusing and frightening for someone with Alzheimer’s. An efficient and comfortable option is home care. Alzheimer’s care Charlotte trained specialists can come to your loved one’s home to provide caring, competent, and constant support.  That way, your loved one can receive the treatment and care they need from the comfort and familiarity of their own home.

There is an emotional and difficult time ahead.  Remember that you don’t have to go through it alone. Comprehensive Home Care can help you and your loved one through this tough time. Contact us here or call us at 704.333.5214.

Check out The Potential Alzheimer’s Cause We May Have Been Missing to read about the latest research.

Dementia

According to statistics, there are over 46 million people in the world suffering from dementia. And, the risks significantly increase when a person reaches 60 years of age. It’s important to know the symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment options in order to be prepared.

Symptoms and diagnosis of dementia


Different people have different symptoms or a combination of symptoms – difficulties speaking, thinking, lack of attention, moodiness, among others. It is important to identify changes in at least two independent areas, like attention and memory, to diagnose dementia.

The most evident sign of this disease is memory loss. In some diseases related to dementia, memory loss doesn’t have to be present (frontotemporal). Memory loss is also not something that is “exclusive” in older people. The most common cause of pathological forgetfulness is the diseases that occur due to deterioration of brain cells.

Care


A person with dementia usually requires 24 hours a day supervision, which may be impossible to be provided by family members. For this reason, home care has become a quite popular choice. Since the patients don’t have to leave their home in order to get professional help, the quality of life of the patient and their family will improve.

Patients and family members must receive thorough and understandable information about the symptoms of the disease according to its stages, the kind of preventive measures they can take, and what they can expect in the later stages.

The expert Dementia and Alzheimer’s care providers at Comprehensive Home Care, are here to help you and your loved one. Call us at 704.333.5214 to learn how we can assist.

Check out Signs Your Loved One Needs Home Care Immediately for Dementia to learn when to look for help.

How to Recognize the Signs of Dementia

As people age, the body starts to experience the signs of aging. Dementia is one of the many conditions you need to look out for in your aging loved one. Luckily there are certain signs of dementia you can look out for. These sings will be the first indicator that something is wrong. So, if you notice any of these symptoms in your loved one feel free to reach out to us to see how we can help.

A few of the signs of dementia include:


Memory loss

This is the most common symptom that falls under the dementia umbrella term. The issue with this is that it doesn’t happen all at once, and everyone has memory lapses from time to time no matter their age. So at first, it may be difficult to see when you or someone you know is experiencing true memory loss due to dementia. The real problem is when the memory loss worsens. Over time it will escalate and become more noticeable. When this sign is noticed, a visit to the doctor is required immediately. They will be able to help you figure out exactly what the underlying cause is, and if there is any way to stop or slow the memory loss.

Communication problems

Another common sign of dementia is communication problems. Word disassociation is very common amongst people who have dementia. In fact, it is often one of the first signs that something could be wrong. That being said, it can also be misinterpreted as everyone has the problem from time to time. Just like with memory loss, it is when the problem becomes frequent that you should start to think something is wrong. It is important to seek help as soon as you realize that the communication problems are a serious problem. There are several dementia-like symptoms that can be treated if caught early.

There are a few other signs, but these are the two most common. You might also notice the loss of the ability to focus or the ability to reason. No matter the cause or the sign, once noticed, it is important that you seek help. Comprehensive Home Care, experts in dementia care, can help you and your loved one. You don’t need to go through this alone, contact us here or call us at 704.333.5214.

Check out Activities for Your Loved One with Dementia to better be prepared if he/she is diagnosed.

Activities for Your Loved One with Dementia

It’s important to engage a loved one with dementia in activities that foster proper brain functioning and boost memory capabilities. Games, puzzles, and other fun activities are known to provide impeccable results and also improve their overall health. As each person has their own unique requirements, finding the right activity demands specialized assisted services. For instance, those with memory loss require help to remember significant events such as birthdays, anniversaries, and names of family members.

Top activities for a loved one with dementia include:

  •  Crossword puzzles or word search games help to maintain their language and vocabulary.
  • Jigsaw puzzle games help keep their brains active and help develop memory retention skills.
  • Scrapbooking can help their memory by keeping an account of important history, events, and names of family members.
  • Cooking can be a very beneficial activity for those with dementia. Baking cookies or helping to prepare their favorite recipe can make them feel useful, and also keeps them busy.
  • Listening to music and asking them to give the title of the song and the artist is a perfect strategy to remember information while lifting their spirits.
  • Taking a short walk can be very beneficial. Exercise is key to their overall health.
  • Writing letters for family and friends encourages them to maintain their writing skills.
  • Reading aloud from a favorite book allows them to listen and improve on their reading and verbal skills.
  • Painting with watercolors is also a great activity that allows the use of creativity.

Comprehensive Home Care can help you decide what activity is best for your loved one. Contact us here or call us at 704.333.5214.

Check out Tips on Speaking to a Loved One with Dementia to further learn best practices.

How to Know If Your Loved One Is Suffering From Parkinson’s

Parkinson’s is a concerning disease. It can cause many problems if not diagnosed in time. Fortunately, there are certain symptoms of this disease. If you keep an eye out for these symptoms, you may be able to catch it in the early stage and prevent it from progressing.

Symptoms of Parkinson’s include:


Frequent Muscle Spasms

One of the first signs of Parkinson’s disease is frequent muscle spasms. However, muscle spasms are not the only symptom. Patients are also known to suffer from involuntary movement of muscles. The most common muscle movement as a result of Parkinson’s is of the thumb and forefinger. Most patients rub their first finger and thumb. This is an unconscious movement. However, the muscle movement is not limited to this. There are many other unconscious muscle movements that patients suffer from.

Slow Responding Muscles

The muscle movement of Parkinson’s patients also suffers greatly. In most cases, the muscles get quite stiff. The patient may experience pain when moving their muscles. At times they may have a hard time gripping objects as well. Most patients even begin walking slowly due to this. Muscle reflexes also slow down substantially. If you notice such symptoms in a loved one, you should consult a doctor immediately. If ignored, it could cause further problems.

Deterioration of Sense of Smell

This is a rare symptom, but it is an indication of the Parkinson’s disease.  There are many patients who have reported the loss of the sense of smell. Even strong and irritating smells do not have any effect on them. Initially, they may not be able to smell mellow smells and only pungent smells may register. But later on, no smell is registered by the senses.

Maintaining Balance

Parkinson’s patients suffer from muscle spasms, but the most concerning problem is muscle coordination. Each muscle in the body works in coordination with the others so that the person can move. However, for Parkinson’s patients’, maintaining body balance becomes a challenge. They have a hard time standing up straight and in some cases, walking.

Comprehensive Home Care is here to help you and your loved one. We provide home care and respite care to Charlotte seniors. Contact us here or call us at 704.333.5214.

Check out Tips to Avoid Common Parkinson’s Complications to learn more.