Monthly Archives: December 2013

Valuable New Year’s Resolutions for Caregivers

Valuable New Year's Resolutions for Caregivers

Every year, we all make well-intended, but short-lived New Year’s resolutions. It’s not uncommon to hear of people “committing to” regular exercise, quitting smoking, or getting more organized.

Caregivers, however, can get so wrapped up in their demanding role, that they neglect their own well-being.  As much as many resolutions appear “lip-service” the New Year may be a good time for caregivers to take a step back, gain some perspective and determine changes to their routine that can help them stay strong and energized in the New Year.

While most resolutions usually only last through perhaps the first week in January, print out this list and post it on your refrigerator door as a daily reminder that your role as caregiver can only be done by taking care of yourself first.

  • Take time out of every day to care yourself so you can go on caring for your senior.
  • Enjoy and embrace the quality moments with your senior.
  • Try to find a way to laugh or find humor in the day amidst any sadness or discouragement you may feel.
  • Don’t hesitate to ask for — or even demand — help.  Reach out to family and friends to help with your loved one so that the weight of my responsibility can be lifted and shared.
  • Know that you’re not alone, even though at times you feel lonely.
  • Maintain a proper balance between your family, work and caregiving lives.
  • Remember that your loved one’s condition may become worse,  but it’s not your fault.
  • Stay positive – you are making a difference!

Home Care Hamilton helping older adults and elderly live independently and safely at home.

Call for a free personalized Care Consultation 905-521-5500”  Don’t forget to like us on facebook! 

Keeping Seniors Safe from Winter’s Elements

Keeping Seniors Safe from Winter's Elements

As the holidays closely approach it may be “Winter Wonderland” outdoors, but the season’s elements pose unique challenges to people of all ages; especially true for older adults. Everything from cold weather to slippery walkways can be dangerous, and sometimes it’s up to caregivers to take steps to help older adults stay safe.

The most significant danger facing seniors in the winter is hypothermia, as slower circulation and metabolism, make them are more susceptible. Caregivers should make a point to always have the thermostat set 65 degrees or above.   When outdoors, prevent heat loss by having them dressed in a warm hat, scarf, and mittens or gloves. Choose a good pair of winter boots for warmth and stability.  Caregivers that help senior clients with personal care should pay special to the skin, as cold outdoor conditions and dry indoor air can cause chapping and irritation.

Once the snow and ice arrive, make sure your walking surfaces are safe.  Keep entranceways and sidewalks clear of ice and snow.  If necessary, contact your local home support agency or other community services for help with snow removal, transportation and grocery bus services.  A caregiver can also bring in the mail and newspaper, and perform any other outdoor tasks that might be unsafe in slippery conditions.

A cane can help with balance; have it fitted to the right height.  When a cane is held upside down, the end should be at wrist level.  It may also be good idea to attach an ice pick at the end.  Another good idea is the use of a hip protector (a lightweight belt or pant with shields to guard the hips). It can help protect the hips against fractures and give added confidence.

Seasonal depression strikes many people during the winter, and that includes seniors.  When family members can’t be there to help elderly relatives, it’s important to have a backup. For many families, in-home care provides the extra measure of security to keep loved ones safe and comfortable, no matter what weather conditions exist.  Companionship care is crucial during most times of the year, but when the weather turns cold and the days become shorter, helping keep homebound seniors active is of the utmost importance.

With winter safety, as with most other concerns for healthy aging in place, there’s no substitute for preparation.  With just a little bit of extra attention, you can help ensure a worry-free winter for both of you.  The Canada Safety Council can offer seniors further suggestions to help stay active yet safe in winter.

Home Care Hamilton helping older adults and elderly live independently and safely at home.

Call for a free personalized Care Consultation 905-521-5500

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