Toward a Better Care Plan for the Elderly

Have you taken the time to build a care plan for your elderly loved one? A recent AgingCare.com post suggests creating a personal health action plan as soon as possible is the single best step you can take. If you’ve already built one, updating it at least once a year is equally a must. Not sure where to begin? The same post offers a number of very helpful tips.

Together forever

  • Start with a Conversation: You’ll want to begin by at least talking to your elderly loved one to get a stronger sense of how much he or she understands about their underlying health conditions. Taking a closer look at changes or complaints is a must so you can discuss it with a doctor at the next appointment. Understanding how tired the individual is, how well his or her appetite and digestion are doing, and even any changes in mental status should all be evaluated.
  • Think About After the Hospital: Any time the hospital or another care facility is required, know exactly what you should expect when your loved one comes home. Knowing more about the condition, the medication, and any doctor’s orders is critical. Deciding on the next steps, including hiring a part-time or overnight caregiver, is going to be essential. Be sure to schedule those follow-up appointments, too.
  • Create Goals: Building new goals, on an ongoing basis, is key. Don’t think for a moment that these have to be big goals, either. Something as simple as walking to the bathroom may be the goal for the moment. As recovery continues to progress, you could consider other options like walking to the mailbox.
  • Think Communication: Talk to everyone involved in the care of your loved one on a regular basis, including any home health care professionals like physical therapists. You may also want to ask about a contact number if you have questions. Don’t forget to make your loved one part of this loop too.
  • Consider Yourself: As a caregiver, it’s just as important that you consider your own wellbeing as part of the plan, too. It can be difficult to take care of yourself when you’re putting so much into caring for someone else, so take the time to learn about what you need and what you can do to relive the stress and get the occasional break.

Take some time to look closer at the helpful post from AgingCare.com before you build your plan. If choosing a caregiver becomes part of your plan, contact David York Agency for more information about how we can help you care for your loved one. David York Home Healthcare Agency is fully acquainted with all factors related to eldercare services and is always available to set up a senior care plan taking the whole patient into account.

David York Agency provides skilled home health aide services for the elderly in their home and is abreast of all the latest guidelines for seniors.  Contact us at 718.376.7755 and visit our website. You can also follow us on FacebookTwitter, google+ and LinkedIn.

 

Watch Out for Pre-Diabetes

If you are over 45, overweight and inactive, you should seriously think about whether you might have diabetes or pre-diabetes.

Diabetes is on the rise worldwide and about to get even higher as a large segment of the population becomes senior citizens. Knowing if you have an elevated blood sugar level which is still in the range of normal, in other words, pre-diabetic, can help you to stave off this latest scourge.

Common complications of diabetes include heart disease, stroke, kidney damage, nerve damage, hearing loss and eye disease including blindness. Some even link it to dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. The concerning thing is about 28% of adults with full blown diabetes and those with pre-diabetes don’t have symptoms.

As we age, the risk of diabetes increases. Insulin is a pancreatic hormone that regulates blood sugar and your body uses the insulin in order to use glucose for energy. Aging causes these cells to wear out in certain individuals triggering diabetes or pre-diabetes.Pre-Diabetes_DavidYorkAgency

In a pre-diabetic stage, you can take the following steps to try to reduce your risk of developing the full blown disease:

  1. Diet: Watch your diet for refined sugars and carbohydrates so there aren’t any spikes in your blood sugar and insulin levels.
  2. Exercise: Even moderate exercise for 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week can make a difference, especially those aimed at reducing belly fat (apple shaped body) since that appears to be a risk factor for developing the disease.
  3. Weight Loss: Losing 7-10% of your starting weight can have an unexpected positive effect.
  4. Smoking: Quit now. In addition to other known ills, smokers have a 50% higher risk of developing diabetes.

More serious measures include:

  1. Daily monitoring of your glucose levels.
  2. Taking medication such as Metformin to keep the blood sugar down.
  3. Having the doctor check the blood level of hemoglobin A1C to make sure it hasn’t risen.
  4. Bariatric surgery for weight loss.

It might be prudent for us all to consider ourselves either pre-diabetic or at risk for it since watching your weight, diet, exercise regimen and not smoking are good steps for any of us to take.

David York Agency is skilled at recognizing the symptoms of various diseases endemic to the elderly. We are licensed by the New York State Department of Health and provide skilled home health aide services for home healthcare and could assist in managing the total care of your senior loved one. Please call us at (718) 376-7755 or visit us on our website www.davidyorkagency.com to become acquainted with all we offer. Please like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn.