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Atlanta Caregiver & Home Care Articles

Debby Franklin

Recent Posts

Arthritis & How To Feel Better!

Posted by Debby Franklin on Jan 11, 2019 12:16:51 PM

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For many arthritis can be a debilitating disease.  It causes decreased mobility, pain, swelling, stiffness and can limit activities.  The five most common and serious types of arthritis are:

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Gout
  • Rheumatoid
  • Lupus

The key steps to managing life with arthritis in order to feel better are:

  • Keep active - In this case the saying "use it or lose it" rings true.  The less you do from a physical standpoint, the less mobility and flexibility you will have.
  • Maintain a healthy weight - Additional pounds increase stress on the joints which increases pain.
  • Avoid injuries - Falls and injuries can cause the development of osteoarthritis.
  • Develop strategies and healthy skills - Exercise, eating certain foods and avoiding foods that can cause inflammation can keep the body working better and feeling better.
  • Diet - Eat foods that are anti inflammatory and rich in antioxidants.
  • Early diagnosis - Avoid ignoring the symptoms! Establish a plan early on to live a healthy lifestyle.

Foods that fight and block inflammation and offer healthy benefits for combating arthritis are:

  • Garlic
  • Turmeric
  • Ginger 
  • Cinnamon
  • Cayenne
  • Green, black & white tea
  • Coffee
  • Red wine
  • Water-flushes toxins out of the body!
  • Tart & dark cherries
  • Strawberries
  • Raspberries
  • Grapes
  • Avocado
  • Dark green leafy vegetables
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Carrots
  • Red pepper
  • Olives
  • Onions, leeks, shallots
  • Omega-3's found in fatty acid fish; salmon, tuna, sardines, mackerel
  • Nuts
  • Chocolate
  • Popcorn
  • Marine Collagen, the building block for cartilage, bones, tendons, ligaments and skin
  • MSM, a natural anti inflammatory that targets joint tissue
  • Glucosamine, aids joint structure and can provide significant pain relief

Foods to avoid that can worsen and cause pain are:

  • Processed and refined
  • Fats and oils that are saturated fat found in meat, butter and cheese
  • Omega 6"s found in corn oil, safflower, soy and vegetable oil
  • Trans fats
  • Reduce salt intake
  • Reduce sugar
  • Moderate consumption of alcohol

If you or a loved one are struggling with a debilitating condition that can benefit from a little help to make life easier, we are here for you! Since 1994 Easy Living Services and has been an expert resource for thousands of Atlanta families with Home Care needs.

call us at, 770-442-8664

My family needs help with a loved one. CLICK HERE.

Topics: disabled, Lupus, fibromyalgia, chronic disease, senior care, elder care

Reasons to Learn CPR

Posted by Debby Franklin on Nov 28, 2018 1:54:24 PM

iStock_24140155_womancollapseEmergencies cannot be predicted.  Would you know what to do if someone collapsed suddenly in front of you? The most common cause of death world wide is due to cardiovascular diseases. Being trained in CPR can be invaluable.  CPR techniques can help save someone who has suffered a heart attack and a number of other emergency situations. 

Four out of five cardiac arrests occur at home.   Brain death occurs four to six minutes after the heart stops breathing,  CPR effectively keeps blood flowing and provides oxygen to the brain and other vital organs ensuring a better chance for full recovery.  

CPR is not a method of restarting the heart, CPR is used to return the flow of blood and oxygen throughout the body to delay brain damage.  CPR consists of chest compressions at a rate of 120 beats per minute performed with the heel of the hand on the center of the chest 2 and a half inches deep into the chest. Repeat the action quickly, at least 120 times a minute.  Don't stop doing CPR until emergency services arrive at the scene! Current studies have shown that people may have a better chance of surviving with normal brain function when CPR is continued up to 38 minutes or longer.  

Less than 3% of the U.S. population receives CPR training, leaving many bystanders unprepared to respond to cardiac arrest.  We can't control everything that will happen to those around us but we can do everything possible to be ready to help in case an emergency occurs.  

If you are still working on resolutions for the new year, add CPR training to your list!  Easy Living Services is a nationally accredited training center currently offering American Heart Association's "Heartsaver" curriculum in a fun, relaxed environment.   AHA CPR/1st Aid and Basic Life support is the number one training course for Healthcare Providers.  Our classes are expertly tailored to meet the needs of diverse participants including individuals, business groups, day care works, and health and fitness instructors.  Contact us today to learn more about flexible and convenient training solutions for your or your organization. 

Easy Living Services, Inc.

770-442-8664

Topics: Cardiac Arrest, Emergency, Heart Attack, first aid, cpr, home safety, senior safety

Long-Distance Family Caregiver

Posted by Debby Franklin on Nov 7, 2018 1:28:49 PM

iStock_african_american_mother_daughterOne of the most time consuming tasks a family caregiver may face is communicating. Communicating with your loved one, other family members, the medical team and the list goes on.  Providing assistance from afar can assist and relieve the work load placed on the primary caregiver in many ways.  Here are ideas for supporting your sibling caring for a loved one:

Make phone calls and take care of paper work - Schedule doctor appointments and keep a record of health issues, medications, and treatment options.  Plan your loved ones monthly calendar and send reminders. Make phone calls and line up contractors for home repairs.  Review the estimates for repairs and assist your loved one in making a decision.  Be the designated "research person".  Pay bills and become the money manager.  All of these tasks can be a major time saver for the primary caregiver.

Take the call - Whenever possible, be there to listen and offer emotional support to your siblings when it is needed.  You may be the only person in the world who truly "gets it".  I have found that just listening and validating emotions goes a long way.  Often, the primary caregiver just needs someone to hear what they are going through and to agree that they have the world's most difficult job.  

Diffuse tension - Many times our loved ones become stressed at having to make difficult decisions.  Loved ones with diminished cognitive skills, can have a very difficult times with decision making and this can lead to frustration, confusion and anger which may be taken out on the primary caregiver.  Because of the distance it can help you to remain calm and dispassionate, guiding your loved one through the decision making process and listening to concerns which all parties appreciate.

Show appreciation - Caregiving is a difficult job and often the rewards are few and far between.  Sincere appreciation goes a long way in sustaining a sibling who is handling most of the care responsibilities.  Consider a gift certificate for a relaxing spa treatment or a gift card to a movie and dinner.  This will give your sibling something nice to look forward to and let then know how much you value the sacrifices they are making to care for your loved one.

Schedule respite care - Out of town siblings simply must make the time to take over for the primary caregiver from time to time.  Besides, providing much needed respite, it is important to stay current on a parent's changing needs.  The holidays are a great time to visit and relieve an overtaxed sibling.  If personal circumstances prevent travel, consider making arrangements with a Professional Caregiver Agency to provide respite care.  A small investment in giving a tired family member the rest needed to sustain them as a caregiver is truly worthwhile.

Easy Living Services is Atlanta's most trusted source for quality In-Home Care.  Offering flexible care plans designed to guarantee safety, comfort and companionship to your loved one at home.

Experience.....

Celebrating over 24 years as your family Home Care Connection.

Integrity.....

It's Easy Living's philosophy in action.

Value.....

Surprisingly affordable care options for both

hourly and around the clock care

770-442-8664

 

 

Topics: Caregiver Support, Live-In Caregiver, taking care of a parent, caregiver, elder care

Why people with Alzheimer's need to stay active

Posted by Debby Franklin on Jul 18, 2018 12:03:21 PM

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Finding activities that your loved one with Alzheimer's can still enjoy and participate in is so important to their overall well being. Most will respond positively to things that they had a personal interest in and enjoyed doing before the diagnosis. Set up a planner and create a list of activities that they once were interest in or plan things that may remind them of their previous daily tasks. 

By keeping your loved one engaged here are some of the improved benefits:

  • Improved sleep and less night time wandering
  • A decline in behaviors that are repetitive
  • Less nervous and anxiety
  • An improvement in restlessness and and irritability
  • Less agitation and argumentative interaction
  • Overall improvement in happiness
  • Promotes improvement in memory
  • Improves general health, flexibility, strength and reduces joint pain
  • Better interaction
  • Mental stimulation may slow down the progression of the disease
  • Social activities help decrease isolation and depression

Here are some things to consider when planning the activities:

Musicfor someone who sang, played an instrument, or danced, music will have a very positive stimulation.  Engage in a sing a long of favorite songs.  Offer and encourage the playing of an instrument or have them put on a record.  Take their hand and sway to the music. You will be amazed at the response music brings to someone with dementia and Alzheimer's.  

Mr. Fix ItFor the person who was always tinkering with something, give them an object to take apart and put together. An old toaster, toy car, or just nuts and bolts.

AccountantFor those whose career was spent in banking or a money related industry, set up a work station.  The station might include a calculator, paper and pencil, an old check book or register, stapler, paper clips, or rolling coins.

At Home WifeFor the hard working many who stayed and home and managed the household you can engage in tasks like setting the table, folding laundry, cutting coupons, dusting furniture, matching and rolling socks, making a simple dessert, water plants,or sweep the floor.

Depending on physical limitations, exercise is a must!  Take a walk, work in the garden, throw a beach ball, dance, or simple exercise like lifting small bottles of water repeatedly are great for the mind and body.

Other Activities:

  • Arts and crafts
  • Puzzles
  • Petting or holding a dog or cat
  • Looking through photo albums
  • Organize recipes
  • Drawing or coloring
  • Listen to music
  • Play a game
  • Knit/Crochet
  • Outings and car rides
  • Adult daycare can provide group activities
  • Spiritual interaction, church, prayer and meditation

Physical and mental activities for persons with dementia and Alzheimer's will almost always be a positive approach for both you and your loved one and this can mean a longer and happier life.

In-Home Care for Alzheimer's

Where do you turn when a love one needs more than you can manage on your own? What do you do when some of the care alternatives seem like a complication rather than a solution?  Consult Atlanta's most trusted source for quality Home Care since 1994, Easy Living Services.    Flexible care plans designed to guarantee safety, comfort, and personal care and attention.  Call us at 770-442-8664.

 

Topics: Alzheimer's, Memory Improvement, dementia

Alzheimer's-Caregiver Tips

Posted by Debby Franklin on Mar 9, 2018 1:23:05 PM

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Alzheimer's is an irreversible, progressive condition that slowly destroys memory, thinking, and the ability to carry out the most simple tasks.  Damage to the brain can begin as early as 10 to 20 years before problems are evident. 

Caring for someone with Alzheimer's can be an unrewarding and stressful job.  Your day will be filled with emotional ups and downs and you will need to make tough decisions.  Many times persons with Alzheimer's will develop behaviors and moods that are hard to cope with. 

Here are facts on the disease and tips that may help you get through the challenging days.

  • Everyone progresses at a different rate and not everyone will experience all symptoms at the various stages.
  • Some plateau at a stage for an extended time and other progress very rapidly.
  • Research has shown that a person with Alzheimer's will survive from two to twenty years.
  • Alzheimer's does not cause death, however, the disease progresses to the point of many of the body's organs shutting down with the end result being death.
  • 45% of American seniors 85 and older suffer from Alzheimer s.
  • Early stage can include; getting lost, trouble handling money, forgetfulness, repeating questions, taking an extended amount of time to do daily task, mood and personality changes, and poor judgment.
  • Mid stage can include; confusion, memory loss, difficulty recognizing family and friends, impulsive behavior, poor hygiene, hallucinations, delusions, paranoia, and inability to cope with new situations. 
  • Final stage can include; inability to communicate, dependent on other for complete care, difficulty with mobility and in bed until the organs and body shut down.

Caring for a loved one with Alzheimer's can have extreme physical, emotional, and financial responsibility.  Caregivers have an increased likelihood of physical strain, mental and emotional stress, depression, financial issues and interpersonal strain.  

Important things to consider.

  • Learn all that you can about the disease.
  • The Alzheimer's Association offers classes and on line material that will educate you on the practical strategies for dealing with difficult situations.
  • Work on coping skills.
  • Develop a strong support system; family, friends, church and synagogue.
  • Join a support group, most people find this a critical lifeline.
  • Find out what respite services are offered.  Contact the local Senior Center or National Institute on Aging for information on government assisted programs. 
  • Take time to take care of yourself by staying physically active and spending time relaxing and enjoying things that make you happy.

In-Home Care for Alzheimer's

If you are finding it difficult to juggle it all- work, family, errands and other demands that leave you over taxed. Where do you turn when a loved ones needs are more than you can manage on your own?  Consult Atlanta's most trusted source for quality Home Care, Easy Living Services, Inc.  We have supported families since 1994 in an effort to keep loved ones safe, and cared for with personal attention at home. 

Call us to learn more 770-442-8664

Topics: Alzheimer's