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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.

After a Stroke

Whether you have personally experienced a stroke or are helping a loved one recover, life after a stroke can be a very trying time. Depending on the severity, strokes can cause physical, mental, and even emotional damage. It’s important to learn how to recover properly as well as how to prevent another from happening.

Check out the following tips on what to do after a stroke:

Prevent another stroke. Prevent another stroke from happening by encouraging lifestyle changes such as losing weight, exercising, and lowering blood pressure.

Set up an emergency plan. The chances of having another stroke are high, so setting up an emergency plan is highly necessary. Post the emergency plan on the refrigerator with the emergency numbers so each visitor is equipped to help.

Utilize technology. Technology such as a Personal Emergency Response System (PERS) that allows a person to call for help by pressing a button is a great tool to use. Check out more ways technology can be beneficial here.

Learn new exercises/therapies. Depending on the severity, recovery techniques such as mobility training and speech therapy may be necessary.

Modify home. Certain modifications may need to be made in the home to improve safety, accessibility, and comfort.

Ask questions. Speak to a physician about what changes you can expect in your loved one and the best options for their recovery.

Stay patient. Recovery takes time; it’s important to stay patient and uplifting during this process.

If you or your loved one recently suffered from a stroke or are looking for preventative methods, Comprehensive Home Care is here to help. Call us at 704.333.5214 or contact us here.

Traveling with the Elderly

The warm weather is here, which means family vacations are approaching. Just remember when you’re planning out the details of your next vacation don’t forget to factor in your senior loved ones. Traveling with the elderly requires careful planning and preparation. No matter the destination or method of transportation, their safety and comfort should be at the forefront of your mind.

If you’ll be traveling with the elderly keep the following in mind:

Consult with their physician. Before plans are solidified make sure they are allowed to travel. The doctor may also provide advice on the best practices for traveling with someone in their condition.

Follow their routines. Ensure they are eating, drinking, sleeping, and most importantly taking medication at the same time as usual. Set a reminder if necessary.

Travel light and use luggage with wheels. Lugging your own luggage through an airport or in a vehicle while also worrying about other people’s luggage can be very stressful.

Keep medication accessible. Make sure any medication that needs to be taken during the trip is where it can be reached.

Flight specific tips include:

Allow plenty of time to get through the airport. Arrive at least 2 hours prior to the flight.

Understand regulations for medications. Follow regulations when packing to avoid any holdups at security.

Take advantage of the assistance airports provide. Many airports offer special assistance such as the ability to expedite security and to receive assistance with luggage.

Think about where on the plane would be best to sit. Sitting closest to the exit for a quick entrance and exit or near the closest restroom may be the best options.

Nonstop flights decrease stress. Instead of worrying about making it to the next flight on time choose a nonstop flight.

Benefits of Spending Time Outside

The weather is beautiful and the flowers are starting to bloom, nature is calling your name. No matter one’s age or the state their health everyone can benefit from spending time outside. So, take a walk, plant a garden, check out the local farmer’s market, or go for a bike ride and encourage your loved ones to do the same. In no time at all physical and mental health will get a huge boost.

Benefits from spending time outside include:


Improved mental health. Spending time in nature reduces levels of depression, anxiety, and improves overall mental health.

Improved memory. Studies have shown that spending time outside can help improve memory, specifically short-term memory.

Improved sleep. Being outdoors exerting energy and breathing in the fresh air leads to improved sleep patterns.

Vitamin D boost. Sunlight provides vitamin D which has many benefits. An improved immune system and improved bone, cardiovascular, and cognitive health are a few of the benefits. Older adults are at a higher risk of developing vitamin D deficiency, so encourage your senior loved one to soak up the sun.

Contact us here or call us at 704.333.5214 to see how we can help your loved one spend time outdoors to receive the wonderful benefits.

Post-Retirement Work

Many senior adults are deciding to reenter the workforce post-retirement, and as such opportunities targeted toward these un-retirees are on the rise. The decision may be financially based or due to the desire to stay productive and active. Companies are learning the importance of utilizing these workers due to their experience and work ethic. Many companies even offer flexible benefits, such as the opportunity to work part-time, seasonal, or remotely.

See below for a list of positions for post-retirement:

Work for a former employer.  Some companies offer part-time work to formerly retired employees, as these former employees already have the experience necessary to succeed in the company.

Consultant. Retirees often choose to offer their expertise via consulting.

Tutor. A quick search online will bring up multiple opportunities to tutor and offer the training necessary.

Administrative assistant/virtual assistant. Companies are looking to delegate tasks and even offer the ability to work from home.

Pet sitter. Animal lovers can use this passion to make a little extra money by pet sitting for friends and family or even for an agency.

Hobby turned into a business. Fun hobbies such as photography and writing can be turned into an enjoyable, profit-making job.

Nonprofit work. Charities and non-profits can be a very rewarding avenue after retirement.

Cruise ship worker. Employment on a cruise ship offers the chance to travel, meet new people, and make money.

Elder Empowerment

It’s essential to learn the best ways to promote elder empowerment and redefine stereotypes toward aging. Encouraging the older generation to live their lives to the fullest and affirming their strength can be difficult when also looking out for their well-being.

It’s important to remember most older adults have lived independently for years and have lived through difficult times. For this reason, taking away certain privileges and changing their routines can cause tension. Finding a balance between doing what’s right for him/her and also empowering them to live their lives the way they wish is important.

Check out the list below for ways to promote elder empowerment:

Decisions. The elderly should be involved in decision-making processes, specifically those that will directly impact his/her life.

Assistance. Remove the negative feelings toward asking for assistance. Receiving assistance reduces stress and opens up free time to focus on passions and hobbies.

Learn. Constant learning keeps the mind sharp and promotes overall brain health. Encourage your senior loved one to take online classes, learn a new skill, and play games that improve memory function.

Volunteer. Helping those in need reduces stress and improves the quality of life of both the volunteer and the people in need. Many cities have multiple types of elderly volunteer opportunities, so do research for the best fit.

Verbal affirmation. Words of affirmation can make all the difference. It’s essential to affirm the strength and worth the elderly.

Comprehensive Home Care gladly empowers the elderly in our care. Contact us here or call us at 704.333.5214 to see how we can provide assistance.

Energy Levels in the Elderly

Low energy levels in the elderly are very common, and many people assume that there isn’t much we can really do much about. However, this is a common misconception. No matter your loved one’s age they can still have the vibrant feeling they felt in their youth. The first step is to understand the factors that may be negatively impacting their energy. Once you understand these factors, changes can be made to boost their energy.

See below the factors that affect energy levels in seniors:

Insomnia. Many factors contribute to the loss of sleep, such as electronic usage, medication side effects, or nutrition. Getting to the root of the problem will greatly improve your senior loved one’s health and happiness.

Nutrition. As mentioned above nutrition is a major factor in the ability to get enough sleep. Getting the right nutrients will boost energy, while eating junk food can cause fatigue and keep you up at night. Research the best foods for elderly or speak with a nutritionist. Foods such as sweet potatoes, eggs, and oatmeal are great energy boosters.

Exercise. Exercising their body and mind will have a major impact on health and energy levels. Finding exercises the senior will enjoy may take some time and research. Check out our blog post Elderly Exercise Ideas to Help Seniors Thrive for ideas.

Anxiety. Anxiety tends to increase with age and is a major cause of decreased energy. A senior loved one may have a hard time receiving help and may feel limited in what activities they can do. They may have anxiety about their personal illness, certain medication may also cause increase anxiety. Help them understand the importance of a calm mind and positivity on their overall health.

For more information and recommendations on boosting your loved one’s energy levels contact us here or call us at 704-333-5214. Our experienced caregivers are best suited to help you and your loved one.

Caregiving During the Holidays

The holiday season is coming upon us. Now is the time to start prepping! The holiday season can be stressful and overwhelming; this is especially true for those who need extra care. Caregiving during the holidays can be tricky because you want to ensure your loved one is having an enjoyable time, but also want to make sure their safety is a priority. It is important to start planning early to make sure the holiday season goes smoothly.

Keep the following in mind when caregiving during the holidays:

Travel.

If at all possible keep travel to a minimum. Traveling can be exhausting and add unneeded stress to your loved one. Have family members come to you instead.

Meals.

Your loved one’s food options may be limited; however, this doesn’t mean their meals need to be bland. A great part of celebrating the holidays is the delicious assortment of food, so do research on special healthy meals they’ll enjoy.

Keep a routine.

Routines are essential for an aging loved one or those with disabilities, so make sure to keep mealtime and bedtime the same as usual. Prepare any visiting family members and explain the importance of the routine.

Accept help.

With family coming in for visits there will be more people who can help out. Don’t be afraid to ask for assistance, holidays tend to cause stress and your stress levels will affect those around you.

Avoid being overly loud or hectic.

This type of environment can be too stressful for your loved one; specifically those with dementia can become overwhelmed or overstimulated by too much noise.

Dealing with depression/loneliness.

The holiday season may be difficult for your loved one emotionally. They may compare the current time to previous holidays or may feel limited on how they can help out. Make sure to keep things upbeat and light-hearted and give them projects they can work on such as stringing garlands of popcorn, creating photo albums, reading holiday stories to the young ones, etc.

Comprehensive Home Care is here to help. Don’t be afraid to reach out to see how we can help take the stress out of the holiday season. Call us at 704.333.5214 or contact us here.

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.