Age-Related Hearing Loss in Your Elderly Loved One: Here is What You Need to Know

Senior Care: Hearing Loss and Seniors
Senior Care: Hearing Loss and Seniors

Does your elderly loved one have age-related hearing loss? If so, they might feel excluded, misunderstood, and isolated. They might feel as if their friends and family members find it difficult to have conversations with them now that they can’t hear as well. This can be tough on your elderly loved one. Are you unsure if your elderly loved one has age-related hearing loss? Keep reading here to learn more about this condition.  

Red Flags for Age-Related Hearing Loss 

If you aren’t sure whether or not your elderly loved one has age-related hearing loss, there are some red flags for this condition. Some of the things that you should be on the lookout for in your elderly loved one include the following: 

  • They turn up the television louder than it needs to be 
  • They complain that others are mumbling during conversations 
  • They often ask people to repeat what they are saying 
  • They struggle to hear children or softer voices 
  • They get lost in conversations where multiple people are talking 
  • They can’t hear well on the telephone 

Do you or a senior care provider notice these things with your elderly loved one? If so, you should have your loved one get a hearing test done. If they have this type of hearing loss, there are some tips to help you communicate better with them.  

Communication Tips for Age-Related Hearing Loss 

Did you find out that your elderly loved one does have age-related hearing loss? If so, there are certain things you can do to improve your communications with your loved one. The things that you can do differently from now on when communicating with your elderly loved one include the following: 

  • Talk more clearly when speaking to your elderly loved one 
  • Talk at a slower pace while looking directly at your elderly loved one 
  • Keep eye contact with your elderly loved one 
  • Use hand gestures and body language to help your elderly loved one to understand what you are saying better 
  • Reduce background noises and other distractions when speaking to your elderly loved one 
  • Stay relaxed and patient when talking to your elderly loved one 
  • Try using different words if your elderly loved one asks you to say something over again 

These are just some of the many helpful things that you can do if your elderly loved one has age-related hearing loss.  

Conclusion 

Age-related hearing loss can be tough on your elderly loved one. It can be tough on you and others who are trying to communicate with your loved one, as well. However, with the tips mentioned above, you, senior care providers, and others can have better and more productive conversations with your elderly loved one.  

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

Sources 

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hearing-loss/symptoms-causes/syc-20373072

https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/hearing-loss-common-problem-older-adults

Four Benefits of a More Active Lifestyle for Your Senior

Elderly Care Gaithersburg, MD: Active Lifestyle
Elderly Care Gaithersburg, MD: Active Lifestyle

Being more active can cover a lot of ground for your senior. There’s physical activity, which needs to be cleared by her doctor before she begins, and social activity. Both have some serious benefits if your elderly family member is willing to branch out a little bit and try new things. This can be difficult at first, especially if she’s gradually become quite inactive. Be patient and help her to slowly make progress if she’s willing to try. 

She Might Live Longer 

No one can guarantee your senior a long life, unfortunately, but being more active can increase the likelihood that she does live longer. Whether you’re talking about being socially active or physically active, both show signs of improving your senior’s lifespan. That’s an important reason to look for ways to start being more active in a variety of ways. 

She Might Avoid Some Health Issues 

A contributing factor to living longer is having fewer health issues, of course. Being more socially and physically active can help with this, too. Physical activity in particular can help a great deal with issues like heart disease, diabetes, and even dementia. Your elderly family member may find that as she becomes more active, her brain also feels healthier and more engaged. 

She Might Be Happier 

Social activity can help with mood regulation because it reduces loneliness and social isolation. But physical activity also helps with happiness and mood regulation. Endorphins and other chemicals and hormones released during and after exercise boost mood for hours and sometimes days afterward. This can be huge for your senior. 

She May Find it Easier to Cope with Life’s Challenges 

Having a social support system is crucial in a crisis or when facing any number of life’s challenges. Your senior has you as her family caregiver, but she needs other forms of social support, too. Being physically active can also serve as a tool for managing difficult life challenges. Volunteering, for instance, can be a great way for your elderly family member to put her own problems in perspective. 

Being more active, both in terms of social and physical activity, is easier with help. Elderly care providers can be there for your senior as she slowly and steadily increases all of the various types of activity in her life. If she needs help in other ways, such as with transportation, they can be there for that, too. 

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

Celebrating National Women’s History Month this March

Caregiver in Olney, MD: National Women's Month
Caregiver in Olney, MD: National Women’s Month

March is Women’s History Month and is observed in several countries across the world, including the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom. It became a national month of recognition in 1981 in the US after having started out as National Women’s History Day and then becoming National Women’s History Week. 

As a caregiver, March can be a great time to connect with your elderly parent and celebrate all the richness women have brought to our country’s history. Depending upon your family’s dynamics and ability to spend time together during these current times, you might choose to spend a few hours one-on-one with your parent celebrating women’s history or make it a month-long celebration with the entire family. Here are a few ways you and your elderly parent can celebrate Women’s History month.  

  1. Make it personal. Your family history is a great place to start. Whether your elderly parent is a man or a woman (or if both are surviving), they are sure to have a rich memory of the history made within your family tree by the women that have come before them. There are stories and maybe even photos that should be captured and recorded to be shared for your current children and for generations to come. You could pick a night a week to have your parent(s) share stories of the women who came before them. If your parents are still not able to gather with your extended family, plan a large family zoom meeting where stories can be shared. Assign someone the role of being the recorder- a family member who will write everything down and share it with those who weren’t able to attend or who haven’t been born yet. If you are able to gather, a family dinner made of traditionally prepared meals can be a great way to end each week in the month of March as you share your family’s history. Sharing these family history moments will build a richness to your family’s history.  
  1. Make it local. As a caregiver, do a little research about which famous women have lived in your town or state and then create a little “history lesson” each week during a meal shared with your parent. Your parent might be surprised to learn about the historical women that have come right from the very area she grew up in. Look for inventors, artists, authors, and other non-traditional roles for women. 
  1. Make it diverse. Historical women come from all kinds of backgrounds. Help your parent widen her perspective by learning about women of color or women of different faiths who have made our country the great place that it is. TV stations such as PBS and the History Channel will have lots of programming this month for a quiet night in with your parent as you learn about the diverse history of women in America.  

It’s nice to be able to spend time as a caregiver simply spending time with your parent, and not having to complete a chore or fulfill a duty. Finding unique monthly celebrations and holidays can create rewarding experiences that both your and your parent will cherish for a long time.  

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

How to Prepare Your Mom for Strong Storms

Home Care Westminster, MD: Prepared for Strong Storms
Home Care Westminster, MD: Prepared for Strong Storms

When an unexpected or long-lasting storm hits, how prepared is your family? It’s important to think about the effects that an unusual storm can have. Snow and ice in a warm climate can wreak havoc on a power grid. If your mom is without power for days, would she be okay? 
 
It’s also important to consider how well your mom is prepared for heavy snow that blocks roadways and keeps others away. If you can’t stop by until the roads to her house are clear, would she have enough food and know what to do? 
 
Keep Her Pantry and Home Stocked for Power Interruptions 
 
When there’s no power, your mom needs to have non-perishable foods available. Crackers and shelf-stable containers of milk are important. Canned soups, vegetables, and fruit are important to keep on hand. Make sure she has a hand-operated can opener in her drawer. 
 
Bottled water is important if she is on a well or has a pressure tank or pump that feeds water into the house. No power often means no running water during an outage. Jugs of water she can use for brushing her teeth and filling the back of the toilet for flushing are also important. 
 
Keep baby wipes on hand for quick sponge baths when power is out. Cans of dry shampoo will help her feel a little fresher. 
 
Make Sure Someone Checks on Her 
 
Talk to your mom’s neighbors or a local family member about checking in on her. If someone is close enough to walk to her home and check-in, it’s ideal. 
 
Teach Her How to Stay Warm 
 
An extended power outage usually means there is no heat. To stay warm enough, your mom should close herself into one smaller room. A bedroom is ideal. Stay warm by dressing in layers and using extra blankets to keep cool air from reaching her skin. 
 
Remember It’s Temporary 
 
The big thing is she needs to remember that the power will come back and the storm will end. It may not be ideal, but she can wait it out. Stressing over it is futile. Books, magazines, and a deck of cards for games of solitaire will keep her busy. 
 
While you shouldn’t panic, you also need to prepare for emergencies. If you don’t live close enough to your mom to check on her each day, arrange home care services. She can have a caregiver making sure she evacuates safely if the orders are given or making sure her home is stocked with water, blankets, and non-perishable foods. Call a home care agency to discuss prices. 

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

Is Dad Eating Right For His Age?

Elder Care Frederick, MD: Eating Right
Elder Care Frederick, MD: Eating Right

Dietary requirements change as we age. The bodies of the elderly absorb nutrients differently. And metabolism slows. That means that people over sixty-five may need to make some changes to their diets, even if their diets are quite healthy. 

Older adults need fewer calories 

Unless a senior is quite athletic, chances are good he or she no longer needs 2500 calories a day. According to the National Institute on Aging (NIA), sedentary women need no more than 1600 calories a day. A moderately active woman can afford to consume 1800 calories, and a very active woman 2000.  

Men who get little exercise need only 2000 calories a day, 2200 if they are moderately active, and still only 2400 if they are very active. 

Seniors can cut back their calorie consumption through mindfulness, smaller portions, and swapping out high-calorie foods for lower calorie, nutrient density foods. 

What are the high-density foods elder care specialists recommend? 

Geriatric specialists recommend a number of food swaps for the elderly including: 

  • Swapping tortilla and potato chips for raw carrots. 
  • Swapping butter for vegetable oil. 
  • Swapping jams and fig cookies for fresh, raw fruit. 
  • Swapping white bread for whole grain bread.
  • Swapping cookies for unsalted and unsweetened almonds. 

Changing beverages can also reduce calories and boost nutrition. One of the healthiest habits a senior can develop is to drink water instead of soda or beer. Two percent milk in coffee and tea rather than whole milk or cream is also a healthy habit to develop. And the NIA recommends substituting sparkling water flavored with natural fruit juice for sweet tea.   

You may or may not feel comfortable telling your parents what to eat. But you can certainly suggest good eating habits by making sure mom or dad’s cabinets and refrigerator are stocked with the right foods. Elder care aides, who visit your parent in his or her home, can also help you make sure that the right foods are available.  

Changing nutrient requirements 

Many seniors will also need to increase their intake of certain nutrients. As we age, many people will need higher quantities of calcium and Vitamin D to preserve healthy bones and prevent osteoporosis. Low-fat and skim milk is a good way to get these nutrients. However, some seniors will need to take dietary supplements to get their right amounts of these nutrients. 

Seniors who find that they are frequently constipated will need to increase their fiber intake. This generally involves eating more greens, raw vegetables, nuts, and whole grain cereals. If upping the intake of these foods doesn’t produce the needed results, a senior may need chewable fiber supplements.  

Many seniors also need greater amounts of Vitamin B12 because the aging body absorbs it less effectively. Good sources of this nutrient are fish, especially clams, chicken, turkey, milk, and eggs. Vitamin B12 is essential to healthy blood cells and nervous systems, so it’s important not to be deficient.  

In conclusion, every age is a good age to eat well, push vegetables and lean proteins, and reduce saturated fats. But, for the elderly, it’s critical to maintain a healthy weight and make sure to get the right nutrients. In many cases, this can be accomplished through a few dietary changes to which your mother or father may not be too resistant. Home care can also encourage healthy eating by suggesting dishes that incorporate fresh fruit and vegetables.  

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

Sources 

https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/smart-food-choices-healthy-aging

https://www.nutrition.gov/topics/nutrition-age/older-individuals

https://www.eatright.org/health/wellness/healthy-aging/special-nutrient-needs-of-older-adults

https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminB12-Consumer/#:~:text=Vitamin%20B12%20is%20a%20nutrient,absorb%20vitamin%20B12%20from%20food.