How Do Cognitive Changes Impact Your Senior’s Ability to Drive?

Elderly Care North Potomac, MD: Cognitive Changes and Driving
Elderly Care North Potomac, MD: Cognitive Changes and Driving

Cognitive changes can be a result of dementia or other illnesses. They can also be a result of a brain injury or a situation your senior’s doctor is still trying to diagnose for her. The bottom line is that no matter why your senior’s brain is functioning differently, that situation dramatically affects many areas of her life. One area that she might be upset about is her ability to keep driving. 

Remembering and Processing Data Is Much More Difficult 

Driving is one of those tasks that involves processing a lot of information all at once. It also involves remembering details, like where things are located and where your senior is headed. Combine that with all of the data she’s collecting as she drives, like how fast traffic is moving and what the various lights and signs mean, and your elderly family member’s brain may not be able to keep up. 

It’s Tougher for Her to Focus on What She’s Doing 

But it’s not just processing the data. Remaining focused on driving may be difficult for your elderly family member. You may notice this when you’re having a regular conversation with her and she brings up a seemingly unrelated topic. It’s one thing when you’re safely sitting in the living room, but that’s a lot scarier if your senior is driving. There’s a lot of multitasking with driving, too. People who are experiencing cognitive changes often aren’t able to keep up with everything that’s going on. Your senior may find that she’s overstimulated and that can lead to a meltdown. That’s definitely something you want to avoid if she’s behind the wheel. 

Coordination and Spatial Abilities Change 

Something else to be aware of is that your senior’s cognitive changes affect how her body works, too. She may not be as coordinated as she used to be, because her brain isn’t processing information that it gets from her body the same way that it used to. People who are driving rely a lot on spatial abilities to help them gauge where the car is, and that may be difficult if not impossible for your senior now. These changes can make driving exceptionally dangerous for her to be doing. 

It might be time to find an alternative for your senior beyond driving for herself. Bringing in elderly care providers gives her someone who can help her with a variety of tasks and ensure that she can go wherever she wants, too. 

If you or an aging loved-one is considering Elderly Care in North Potomac, MD please contact the caring staff at Just Divine Home Care Agency today at (301) 219-1585. 

5 Easy Ways Seniors can Upgrade Bathroom Safety

Home Care Olney, MD: Bathroom Safety
Home Care Olney, MD: Bathroom Safety

The bathroom is a common place for falls and it is full of slick surfaces that can be quite unforgiving if a fall does occur. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be hard to make the bathroom a safer place for seniors. 

Use Color to Enhance Contrast 

Poor vision can contribute to seniors’ fall risk. It’s important to stay current on yearly eye exams. An easy thing seniors can do in the bathroom to compensate for changes in vision is to use contrasting colors to increase visibility.  

Use brightly colored tape for a quick and inexpensive way to increase contrast in areas such as door frames or the lip of the shower. Purchasing a dark-colored toilet seat can also be helpful. Using dark and light wood or tiles is an effective and elegant way to accomplish this for a senior looking to remodel the bathroom. 

Add Non-Slip Strips 

Non-slip mats can help reduce the risk of slipping quite a bit. However, they must be used with caution. Mats can actually increase the risk of tripping if they are worn out or don’t stick securely to the floor. Non-slip strips may be a better choice. EIther way, ensure that any non-slip additions are in good repair and don’t present a tripping hazard.  

Install Grab Bars 

Grab bars can make the bathroom much safer by providing a sturdy handhold for seniors to steady themself while turning around to use the toilet or while stepping into the tub. Inexpensive clamp-on or suction-based handholds are available for those who only need a small amount of balance support. For seniors who need something to bear a significant percentage of their weight, a grab bar will be in order. Grab bars should be installed into a stud for safety, so having a professional contractor perform this work is a good idea.  

Request a Professional Home Safety Assessment 

Seniors who are worried about falling in the bathroom would do well to consult with a specialist. Physical or occupational therapists can come into a senior’s home to assess the space and how the individual moves about it. They can then give personalized recommendations for increasing safety, efficiency or functionality based on their specific goals, abilities and needs. 

Professional Home Care Services 

Professional caregivers are a popular option for seniors as well. Available through home care agencies, professional caregivers are trained and experienced in assisting seniors to shower safely.   

Home care aides come into a senior’s home to help with a wide variety of tasks. They offer customized scheduling and services so each senior’s particular needs and preferences are accommodated. For example, home care aides can come early morning, late evening, or anytime in between to assist with a shower or bath. They can even perform a bedbath. After bathing, they can lotion the senior’s back and legs, help with dressing, or clean up the bathroom. Not only that, they can file toenails, paint fingernails, run a load of laundry, or help out with any number of other things while they are there. 

There are many ways that hiring home care can enhance bathing safety on a customized and individualized basis. 

If you or an aging loved-one is considering Home Care Olney, MD please contact the caring staff at Just Divine Home Care Agency today at (301) 219-1585. 

Sources 

https://www-hopkinsmedicine-org.cdn.ampproject.org/v/s/www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/wellness-and-prevention/4-ways-to-improve-fall-safety?amp_js_v=a6&amp_gsa=1&amp=true&usqp=mq331AQFKAGwASA%3D#aoh=16029040487616&referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.com&amp_tf=From%20%251%24s&ampshare=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.hopkinsmedicine.org%2Fhealth%2Fwellness-and-prevention%2F4-ways-to-improve-fall-safety

Is There an Ideal Diet to Lower the Risk of Heart Disease?

Caregiver Bethesda, MD: Diets and Heart Disease
Caregiver Bethesda, MD: Diets and Heart Disease

Cardiovascular disease risks increase as you age. Among those 60 to 79, around 68 to 69 percent of U.S. men and women have cardiovascular disease. After that, the rates increase to around 85 to 86 percent. 
 
Doctors continually recommend three things to help lower the risk. Diet, exercise, and maintaining a normal blood pressure are all important. Seeing a doctor each year to have blood pressure monitored is important. If blood pressure is high, medications, dietary changes, and exercise all help. 
 
Choosing a diet to lower the risk of heart disease is important. Here are some of the different diets and the reasons they’re recommended. 
 
Anti-Inflammatory Diet 
 
The Anti-Inflammatory Diet focuses on foods that help the body avoid inflammation that causes health issues like arthritis, eczema, and digestive issues. It’s good as it focuses on lots of vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy oils. 
 
DASH Diet 
 
The DASH Diet is designed to reduce high blood pressure by focusing on low-sodium meals. Focus turns to low-fat dairy, nuts, and vegetables. The goal is to pick foods that are high in potassium, magnesium, and other vital nutrients. 
 
Mediterranean Diet 
 
The Mediterranean Diet is more of a lifestyle change than a specific diet. You’re changing your eating habits to focus on whole grains, vegetables, olive oil, seafood, and a small glass of red wine each day. Red meats, sugary treats, and processed carbs are out. 
 
Do You Need to Follow a Diet? 
 
Instead of worrying about a particular diet, your parents should focus on these three dietary changes. 
 
#1 – Fiber 
 
Your mom and dad need to increase their fiber intake. A University of Oxford study found that just 10 grams of fiber reduced the risk of a stroke by just over 20 percent. The recommended intake is 38 grams for men and 25 grams for women. 
 
#2 – Healthy Fats 
 
Saturated fats found in packaged foods, red meat, and processed meats like hot dogs, deli meat, and sausages increase the risk of high cholesterol and high triglycerides. Focus on lean proteins like fish, legumes, and poultry breasts. Seeds, nuts, and healthy fats from avocados and olives are also recommended. 
 
#3 – Boost Vegetable Intake 
 
Set a goal for your parents to eat 2 to 2 ½ cups of vegetables and 1 ½ to 2 cups of fruit each day. Mix up colors so that they’re eating leafy greens, reds from things like berries and sweet peppers, yellows and oranges from squashes and rutabagas, and whites from cauliflower and bananas. 
 
If they have a hard time shopping, creating weekly menus, and cooking meals at home, caregivers can help. With support, your parents may stop relying on takeout meals and frozen or prepared meals at the grocery store. 
 
Call a home care agency and ask about caregivers and their prices. Once you have an idea into the rates and services, you’ll work with an expert to come up with the best care plan for your parents’ needs. 

If you or an aging loved-one is considering a Caregiver in Bethesda, MD please contact the caring staff at Just Divine Home Care Agency today at (301) 219-1585. 

Sources: 

https://www.heart.org/idc/groups/heart-public/@wcm/@sop/@smd/documents/downloadable/ucm_483970.pdf

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/health/stroke-risk-ischaemic-haemorrhagic-diet-fruit-veg-fibre-cheese-eggs-a9353871.html

What Senior Care Services Help Your Parents Stay Active?

Senior Care Annapolis, MD: Senior Care Services
Senior Care Annapolis, MD: Senior Care Services

Aging at home means your parents stay in their home as long as is physically possible. To do so, they need to be able to do everything from eating the right foods to taking care of their care needs like showering and oral care. Their home needs to be clean and organized to prevent fall hazards and other health issues. 
 
What if they need a helping hand with things like flossing their teeth, washing dishes, and doing the laundry? Does that mean they need to move in with you or someone else? If they want to live in their home but need a helping hand, senior care services are the best way to make sure it happens. 
 
Meal Preparation 
 
Cooking meals may be harder if arthritis affects the joints in the fingers. Holding a knife firmly enough to slice vegetables and meats is often difficult. You can look for cutlery that’s designed for arthritic hands or hire caregivers to prepare and serve meals. 
 
With meal preparation services, your parents also have someone to do the dishes and disinfect surfaces afterward. It keeps the kitchen clean and germ-free, which helps prevent cross-contamination and food poisoning. It also ensures your parents have the right foods to provide energy for their activities. 
 
Transportation 
 
The CDC’s 2017 counts put the number of adults aged 65 or older at 47.8 million. Of those people, just under 44 million were still able to drive a vehicle. With more than 3 million unable to drive, transportation services are often one of the most important tools in staying active as you age. 
 
Caregivers can drive your parents to stores, restaurants, parks, museums, medical offices, and senior centers. They can stay with your parents while they’re engaging with others or pick them up later. Senior care specialists can help you schedule weekly visits from caregivers to meet your parents’ needs. 
 
Housekeeping 
 
Arthritis pain is just one reason that housework becomes harder for aging adults. Lifting a laundry basket is one thing. Safely carrying it up and down the stairs to a basement laundry room is another. They avoid falls and injuries that limit their activities. 
 
Caregivers can help your parents with the more challenging housekeeping chores like stripping sheets, making the bed, doing the laundry, and vacuuming stairs. If your parents still like to do these chores but need a helping hand, that’s also an option. 
 
With senior care, your parents have the help they need to remain independent and active. They may be able to walk if they have an arm to hold for support. They may just need someone to carry things down to the washing machine and back upstairs. Make arrangements by calling a senior care agency. 

If you or an aging loved-one is considering Senior Care in Annapolis, MD please contact the caring staff at Just Divine Home Care Agency today at (301) 219-1585. 

Sources: 

https://www.cdc.gov/motorvehiclesafety/older_adult_drivers/index.html

https://www.census.gov/newsroom/facts-for-features/2017/cb17-ff08.html