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How to Prevent Seniors from Feeling Alone

One of the most difficult aspects of the aging process is getting used to not having our family around all the time. Children grow up and leave the nest. Spouses die. Younger people begin to fill the roles of older people at work. It’s, therefore, not surprising that some seniors feel neglected, isolated, and meaningless. Senior care workers have a special responsibility to ensure that families of seniors understand their role in preventing seniors from feeling alone. Consider providing the following suggestions to the families of your clients.

Ensure that the Senior Has a Hobby

Aging doesn’t always mean that we must give up the things we love. Sure, the aches and pains will prevent us from swinging that tennis racquet or dribbling down the basketball court. However, there are several other activities in which seniors can engage. The activities depend on that senior’s interest, but the benefits of them participating in these hobbies is undeniable. Hobbies allow seniors to consistently engage in social activities with people in their own age group, keep their minds engaged, and find joy in life.

Schedule Consistent Family Time

Shoving a senior family member into a nursing home or hiring a live-in aide is often deemed a necessity. The families of these seniors are usually unable to provide the care needed. While this is understandable, it doesn’t make it right to isolate this senior. It’s important for the senior’s family to schedule meaningful weekly visits.

Allow them to Teach You a Skill

These weekly visits provide the perfect opportunity for seniors to share their knowledge and experiences with their family. For instance, a senior who knows how to bake delectable treats can pass on this skill to other family members. They also have a lifetime of experiences to share to anyone willing to give a listening ear.

Encourage Volunteerism Activities

Aesop once said, “No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.” Volunteerism gives seniors a sense of purpose. They have been through so much and have a lot to offer to others. Encourage families of seniors to make it possible for them to participate in community volunteerism activities. Also encourage them to make these activities a regular part of the senior’s routine.

Be Present with the Senior

Spending time with a senior is pointless if you don’t give him or her your undivided attention. Families of seniors should know that family time is a time to be present and involved in family activities. All electronic devices and distractions should be put away. All meeting should be scheduled. This family time with a senior should be treated as valuable and sacred.

Loneliness is a dreadful state of being that shouldn’t befall any senior. One of your primary roles as a caregiver of a senior is to ensure that the senior’s family understands their role in preventing this loneliness. Discuss each of the strategies outlined in this article with the family. Each person can play his or her part in making the aging process more bearable for a senior.

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Medical Advancements in Geriatric Care

Medical research provides solutions to age-old problems. Forward-thinking geriatric care facilities embrace opportunities to try new medical procedures and technology that can improve the quality of care they provide to their patients. Four of the top medical innovations that were revealed at Cleveland Clinic’s 2016 Medical Innovation Summit are outlined in this article.

The Microbiome Project

Microbiome research made great strides in 2016. Microbiomes are microorganisms in the body that affect the digestion process, interact with medications, and affect how certain diseases (such as Inflammatory Bowel Disease) progress. Researchers have discovered how to use our body’s microbiomes to prevent lethal imbalances in the body, diagnose diseases, and segue into new therapies. This can mean a huge relief for elderly patients who suffer from digestive issues.

Cellular Immunotherapy

Chimeric antigen receptor T-cell therapies were launched this year. This special therapy involves removing a patient’s T-cells and genetically reprogramming them to destroy tumor cells in that patient’s body. It has been specifically created for treating leukemia and lymphomas.

Bioabsorbable Stents

Metal coronary stents have been used for years to treat coronary artery blockage. These stents, however, increase the risk of getting blood clots and having complications during future surgeries. They also make some scans, such as MRIs, difficult to carry out. The first bioabsorbable stent was approved in the U.S. in July 2016. The stent’s polymer is absorbed into the blood stream after 2 years.

3-D Visualization and Augmented Reality

This medical advancement incorporates technology for making surgeons more efficient. Advancements in neurosurgery and retinal microsurgery now allow surgeons to immerse themselves in a 3-D visual representation of a patient. Surgeons will now be able to use a more comfortable posture to carry out surgeries.
Other recent medical advancements not featured in the 2016 Cleveland Medical Innovation Summit are highlighted below.

Robot Assistants

The infamous movie iRobot, featuring acclaimed actor Will Smith, seems to be forming our reality. There are more robots available now to help medical professionals carry out their task efficiently. The da Vinci robot, for instance, enables surgeons to perform surgeries with fewer invasive cuts. Another example is the TUG robot which can carry containers of various sizes containing medications and lab specimens.
The Artificial Pancreas

Yes, you read that correctly. The mad scientists from Medtronic have emerged from their labs with the MiniMed 670G, a wearable device that instantly supplies a diabetes patient with insulin if blood sugar levels are too low. No more needles. No more time checks. The device does all the work.

Nutrigenomics

Nutrigenomics combines genetic testing and nutrition science. It is in its early phases. However, when it launches participants will be able to send a DNA sample to get their DNA sequence. This DNA sequence can then be synced with an app that tells the user the foods he or she should and should not eat.

Medicine has changed. Each year scientists open new frontiers that can help improve the quality of life for everyone. Are you ready to be a part of the revolution? If you aren’t, you may be left in the dust.

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5 Differences Between Home Health Care and Non-Medical Home Care

One of life’s harshest realities is gaining an increasing sense of appreciation for the fact that your parents are no longer who they used to be. They aren’t the energetic people who chased you around the house when you were little. Instead, there may be some days when they can’t even manage to get up out of bed because of the aches and pains of the aging process. You had hoped that this day would only come when you were ready…when you had all your ducks in a row and could take care of your parents yourself. Sadly, time waits on no one and the needs of your aging parents are staring directly into your face.

You’re now at a crossroads. The demands of your career and young family make it difficult for you to provide full-time care for your parents. You have 2 options. You could quit your full-time job and make space for your parents to move in. The other option is hiring a home health care professional. This article focuses on the latter and will help you decide whether you need a medical or non-medical home care professional for your elderly parents.
Difference #1: Licensing Requirements and Roles

Home health care professionals must have medical licenses. These professionals include nurses and physical therapists. They follow a health-care plan provided by a doctor. Contrastingly, non-medical in-home care professionals do not need a medical license. They help clients carry out the functions needed for daily living such as bathing, dressing, housekeeping, and preparing meals.

Difference #2: Costs

Medical home health care is more expensive than non-medical home healthcare. According to payingforseniorcare.com, you can expect to pay between $15 to $27 per hour for non-medical home care and between $13 to $30 per hour for medical homecare. Costs increase depending on the state in which you live, and the types of services required.

Difference #3: Medicare Coverage

Medicare is the government’s health insurance program for people 65 years and older. It is also provided to people with end stage renal disease and some people with disabilities. Medicare covers up to 35 hours per week of medical home health care. However, it doesn’t cover non-medical in-home care.

Difference #4: Who Needs It

Medical homecare is typically given to people who need long-term outpatient care. This type of care includes: catheter care, injections, IV infusions, tracheotomy care, ventilator management, physical rehabilitation, occupational therapy, speech therapy, pain management, and administering medication.
Non-medical homecare is typically requested for people who want to remain at home, but can’t carry out necessary daily functions on their own. These functions include: meal preparation, bathing and dressing, cleaning, and transportation.

Some people need a combination of both services. There are some home care providers who provide both services.

Difference #5: Duration

Medical homecare generally lasts for a shorter time than non-medical homecare. This is because medical homecare usually proceeds a person leaving the hospital. The medical professional provides the necessary care until the person has sufficiently recovered. Non-medical homecare professionals can work with a client until he or she dies.

It is important to know the difference between medical and non-medical homecare. The differences outlined in this article will help you determine the best type of care to seek for your aging parents. Don’t try to o it al on your own. Hire a professional who will ensure that your parents get the care they need.

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