Is that Memory Slip More Serious?

Memory slips – they seem like a common part of aging, but they can also be a sign of something fairly serious, including Alzheimer’s or even dementia. How can you tell the difference? What’s normal and when should you be concerned? Those smaller slips are often called Mild Cognitive Impairment, or MCI. AgingCare.com recently posted an article to help you tell the difference. Here are a few of the highlights from the piece.

memory slip

  • 20% of older adults suffer from MCI and increasing age is the most well-known factor.
  • Symptoms typically include misplacing items, having trouble remembering the names of those recently met individuals, and being unable to follow a normal conversation. The more extreme the symptoms, though, the more likely it is to be an MCI case.
  • Concerning MRI scans can also indicate MCI. The brain can actually undergo physical changes when MCI is present, but that does not mean that it’s not Alzheimer’s or another type of dementia, as both of those tend to come with brain changes too.
  • The earlier the diagnosis, the better. As soon as you notice cognitive problems in your loved one, head for the doctor. There are many therapies that can be implemented early on to help slow the progress of the condition.
  • Diagnosis is difficult. Often obtaining the diagnosis is more difficult than you may have initially considered. The doctor will have to take a full medical and family history, then conduct a number of tests. There are also a few different types of MCI, so understanding which one your loved one may have can be tough.
  • Post-diagnosis, things don’t always look better. The FDA hasn’t approved treatment for MCI. What’s more, though, is that it can increase the risk for Alzheimer’s and dementia, making things difficult.

Take the time to learn more about the condition by visiting the AgingCare.com post.

David York Agency (DYA) is skilled at recognizing the symptoms of various diseases endemic to the elderly and makes every effort to send caring and compassionate home health aides into the client’s home. DYA provides certified home health aide services for the elderly in their home and is abreast of all the latest guidelines and trends for seniors.  We would be happy to discuss your case with you.  Please call for a free consultation today at (718) 376-7755 or visit our website.  You can also follow us on FacebookTwitter, google+ and LinkedIn.

 

How Do I Make Sure a Home Health Aide is Fully Qualified?

As people live longer, the need for home care likely increases. While some aging seniors can receive personal care from family members, others search for care from a qualified home health aide. Hiring a home health aide can allow your loved one to remain in the comfort of his or her own home while getting the support for the activities of daily living needed. Home health aides may do anything from providing personal care to cooking. If your loved one needs help with general house duties like meal preparation, a specially certified home health aide may be sufficient. It is important to make sure that you find a qualified caregiver that meets the needs of your loved one.  Here are some things you’ll want to make sure your home health aide has.

Certified & Specially Trained

Aide Qualified2You want to make sure that your home health aide is certified.  Most are either Certified Home Health Aides or Certified Personal Care Aides.  In the state of New York, home health aides receive their certification from a training institute.  All New York approved training institutes will be certified and licensed by the New York State Department of Education.  Home Health Aides maintain their certification by working for a licensed agency that will provide the 12 hours of annual in-service instruction they need to keep their certification current. 

Current Credentials & Valid References

It is important that your home health aide have valid references.  Whether they are from previous employers, school professors, or mentors, they should be willing to allow you some time to review and talk with these references.  A reputable home care agency will require this as a matter of course and is meticulous about validating all the information on their home health aide’s application.  They also check that their certificates are current and valid with the New York State Department of Health. 

Criminal Background Check

A criminal background check is done through fingerprinting.  If your home health aide has committed a crime, they would’ve been finder-printed soon after the time of arrest.  By requesting a finger print background check, you can be sure that your home health aide is clear of a criminal past.  A licensed home care agency takes care of this step for you and is not allowed by law to hire aides convicted of a felony.  While it is up to the discretion of each agency to hire someone convicted of a misdemeanor, many will not hire an aide with any criminal background at all as an extra safety net since they are sending aides into client’s homes. 

Since the above certification and security checks can be labor intensive, many people searching for a home health aide prefer to use a home health care agency that will relieve you entirely of these tasks.  Additionally, a Registered Nurse will do an initial nursing assessment and provide ongoing assessment and supervision periodically or as needed as part of the service. 

At David York Agency, they ensure that all home health aides and personal care aides are certified and specially trained, checked for current credentials, have valid references, are interviewed by astute personnel specialists and thoroughly screened, are fingerprinted and checked for a criminal background.  David York Agency also provides frequent in-house/in-service education, is insured and bonded and only sends aides of the highest caliber and integrity to your loved one’s home.

Home health aides should be trusted to take care of aging parents, a spouse or loved one who needs extra help.  Knowing they are fully qualified will ease your mind and help make the decision to hire a lot easier. 

For more information on hiring a home health aide, contact David York Agency at 718-376-7755 and visit our website at http://davidyorkhomehealthcare.com/. Please like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn.