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Atlanta Caregiver & Home Care Articles

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

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

Holiday Gifts for Senior Loved Ones

Posted by Debby Franklin on Nov 30, 2017 12:37:45 PM

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It can be difficult finding appreciated gifts for senior loved ones.  Many have down sized and lack storage space or they may be dealing with health issues and physical challenges.  At this time in life, your loved one probably doesn't need more stuff they only need things that can really be used.  

Here is a list of ideas to help with your gift giving this holiday:

  • Flameless Candles - Provides a safe alternative to the traditional candle and they can help to lift the spirit and mood.
  • Digital Picture Frames - Record a personalized greeting that can be replayed by your loved one.
  • Photo Dialer Telephones - This device is equipped with large buttons and high volume.  The photo dialer makes calling family, friends and medical professionals less challenging for those suffering with age, eye and ear related issues.
  • Technology - Stay connected and in touch by purchasing a tablet and helping them to set up user friendly apps and programs such as Facebook, email and instant messenger.
  • Lotions and Skin Care Items - These are gifts that are always useful.  Be sure to find out about allergies and favorite products. 
  • Homemade Anything - Treats, gifts made by the family or grandchildren are always special.
  • Decorate for the Holidays - Offering to bring in and decorate the sitting area for your loved one helps to share the holiday joy.
  • Schedule an Outing - Make arrangements for a visit or special outing with a favorite past time or holiday show.
  • Adult Coloring books - These are very popular for all ages and have been known to provide hours of positive brain stimulation.  The coloring books can be a creative outlet that can brighten the day for someone who may be at home or by themselves throughout the day.
  • TV Apps - Set up Netflix and buy a years subscription or call their provider and pay for the Hallmark Channels to be added to their account.
  • Comfy Things - Bathrobes, slippers, cozy blankets or throws, bed jackets and shawls are always appreciated.
  • Home Care Assistance - Purchase a gift certificate, redeemable for hours of home care service. Here are examples:
    • Give the gift of a personal driver to take your loved one on appointments, errands, shopping or outings with friends.
    • Give the gift of help with household chores. Light housekeeping, organizing and maintenance.
    • Give the gift of holiday help.  Gift shopping and wrapping, mailing packages, sending out cards,  holiday decorating, help with holiday recipes or transportation to holiday events.
    • Give the gift of respite care for a family member that is a full time caregiver.  For the enormously large number of people who care for a family member, having time to allow for self care is a most valuable gift. 
    • Give the gift of companionship and socialization. Many senors have lost spouses and close friends or may be separated from family, it can be a time of loneliness and sadness that result in holiday blues.

Time is the most valuable gift you can give to anyone, not only during the holidays but throughout the year.  The holidays are a reminder for family and friends to come together and serve one another.  It' a time to be thankful and to be selfless in giving.

About us:

Easy Living Services, Inc. has proudly supported Atlanta families by providing quality caregivers since 1994.  Affordable, flexible care plans designed to insure safety, comfort and companionship.  consult Atlanta's most trusted source for Home Care

770-442-8664.

 

Topics: Caregiver Information, elder care, senior care

When Neglect Has Become Elder Abuse

Posted by Debby Franklin on Aug 27, 2014 4:14:00 PM

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While 91 percent of federal abuse prevention dollars are spent on child abuse, 7 percent is spent on domestic abuse, and only 2 percent goes towards protecting the elderly.  As we become older and age, many senior adults become more physically frail.  We may not see or hear as well as we use to, and many develop cognitive problems such as dementia.  As a result, the elderly become increasingly vulnerable to abuse and neglect.

Many seniors around the world are being abused: harmed in some substantial way often by people who are directly responsible for their care. Elder abuse most often takes place where the senior lives:  in the home where abusers are a family member, trusted caregiver, or in institutional settings and long-term care facilities. 

8 Facts About Elder Abuse

  • The five most common forms of elder abuse are:  physical, emotional, psychological, financial and neglect.
  • Most victims are dependent on their abuser for their basic needs and care.
  • 2 million seniors become victims of abuse or neglect every year.
  • 1 in 9 American over the age of 60 has experienced some form of elder abuse.
  • In almost 90 percent of elder abuse and neglect incidents, the perpetrator is a family member.
  • For every reported incident of elder abuse, five go unreported.
  • Seniors who have been abused have a 300 percent higher risk of death compared to those who weren’t.
  • Almost 50 percent of seniors with dementia experience some form of abuse.

Warning Signs

  • Soiled or dirty clothing, inappropriate clothing for the weather, dirty or unbathed
  • Unsanitary living conditions: dirt, bugs, soiled bedding and clothes
  • Unsafe living conditions
  • Malnourished, unusual weight loss, dehydration
  • If an older adult or family member won’t let others into the home there could be a problem
  • Untreated physical problems
  • Lack of attention to the home or a home that is in a state of disrepair
  • Odd noises or bad odors coming from within the home
  • Changes in personality such as a lack of interest or unusual nervousness
  • Bruises, bed sores, burns or other signs of harm
  • Giving older adults unnecessary tranquilizers or sleeping pills
  • Confining an older person by tying him or her to a bed or wheelchair.
  • Signs of being restrained, such as rope marks on wrists
  • Denying an older person necessities such as adequate food, water, needed medications, canes, walkers, hearing aids, and glasses
  • Unusual patterns of spending or financial withdrawals
  • Frequent purchases of inappropriate items, misuse of personal checks, credit cards, or accounts
  • Suspicious changes in wills, power of attorney, titles, and policies
  • Bills not being paid
  • Giving generous gifts to a “new best friend”
  • Intimidation, yelling, threatening, humiliation and ridicule
  • Isolation from friends and not being allowed to participate in enjoyable activities
  • Failure to fulfill a caretaking obligation
  • Refusal to allow you to see the elder alone

Healthcare Abuse

  • Charging for healthcare services that have not been provided
  • Overcharging, double-billing for medical care
  • Overmedicating
  • Receiving kickbacks for referrals to other providers or for prescribing certain drugs
  • Medicaid fraud
  • Recommending fraudulent remedies
  • Evidence of inadequate care when bills are paid in full

Caregiving Risks

Many family members find taking care of a loved one to be satisfying and enriching.  The responsibilities and demands of caring for an adult as their condition deteriorates can be extremely stressful.  The stress can lead to mental and physical health problems that can create caregiving burn out.  The inability to cope with stress, depression and lack of support from other family members can create situations where neglect and abuse are more likely to occur.

What To Do If You Experience Or Suspect Elder Abuse

You might be afraid to get involved, but it is important to speak up about suspected abuse.  Rest assured that trained experts who investigate charges of abuse and neglect will examine the situation carefully and then take action to protect the safety of the older adult.  Call Adult Protective Services, you don’t have to have proof of abuse or neglect but if you are concerned that this is happening, you should call.  When you call for help, your name remains confidential.  A representative from APS will come to the home and interview the person to see if they need assistance or need to be rescued.  Call 911 or the local police for immediate help or if you or a love one is in immediate danger.

For more information contact the National Center on Elder Abuse at 1-800-677-1116 or visit the website at  www.ncea.aoa.gov

If you are finding it difficult to juggle it all - work, family, errands and other demands that often leave you over taxed.  Where do you turn when a loved ones needs are 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?  We understand, in fact, we have been there.

 

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

 

Finally, a real solution.  At last, peace of mind.  Call us at 770-442-8664.  

 

 

 

 

 

Topics: elder care, live in caregiving, elder abuse, abuse

Home Care: 8 Things You Should Know Before You Hire a Caregiver

Posted by David Bacon on Apr 29, 2014 2:53:00 PM

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Each week, Easy Living Services interacts with clients that are struggling to make decisions not only for themselves, but also for a loved one.  Each family has questions and we took our most common queries and posted them below.  We hope you find them useful!

What are the three most important qualities to look for in a caregiver?
  • Compassion, Passionate about helping others & Skilled -  Caregivers that are Certified Nursing Assistants who have a minimum of 5 years experience.  Demand a rigorous screening process that includes an extensive background check, in-depth interview and personal and professional reference checks. Only with an agency that provides this are you ensured of working with a highly skilled caregiver who is passionate about caring for those who need assistance.  For your peace of mind, our referred caregivers meet all of these criteria and are fully insured.
What kind of services should I expect from my caregiver?
  • All non-medical assistance that will keep your loved one safe and comfortable at home, at the hospital or in a nursing or re-hab facility. Companion / Homemaker / Personal Care - Caregivers can provide light housekeeping, errands, meals, socialization and companionship.  Personal Care can include bathing, dressing, grooming, safety, sanitation and meal preparation.
What if my caregiver can't make it due to illness?
  • Ensure that your provider has a large staff of qualified, professional and reliable caregivers -  In the event of  caregiver illness or emergency absence this ensures that a replacement is available. Easy Living Services maintains a backup program and has a large network of professionals available to assist with your needs.
Why should I use an agency instead of hiring a private caregiver out of the newspaper or internet?
  • You will want to ensure that caregivers are screened, trained, have an excellent work ethic and are insured for your safety - Caregivers that have been professionally trained specifically in working with persons who are disabled, recovering from an illness or injury as well as senior care must be adequately screened to ensure that they are qualified to care for your loved one.  Working with an agency is like having an insurance plan ensuring that you have a qualified caregiver available when you want and need "life made easier".
What is live-in care and how is the cost determined?
  • Clients requiring around the clock care can opt for a caregiver to live with their loved one.  The caregiver must be able to sleep 7-8 hours at night and have a separate room for sleeping.  Live-in services are available for both Companion and Personal Care. Instead of paying an hourly rate Live-In rates are normally a flat fee per day making the cost a more affordable option.   Easy Living Services rates are highly competitive - starting at $175/Day.
Can I have flexible hourly care?
  • Yes. Some clients require only part-time care. Easy Living Services offers hourly care services starting at only $16.95/Hour.  (Some minimums may apply.)        
What about emergency care after business hours?
  • Your caregiver provider should be available 24 hours, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.  When their office is closed, there needs to be an on-call knowledgeable person availble to assist with any emergency needs. Easy Living has an on-call knowledgeable person available to assist with emergency after hour needs 24/7/365.
Why would I want to use a locally owned company rather than a franchise agency?
  • Ask yourself if a bigger company is necessarily a better company. Home Care agencies are one of the largest growing industries in today's market.  "Big business" has seized this opportunity.  Franchised, "locally owned" agencies are on every corner.  A franchise owner typically goes to franchise school for a couple of weeks and then becomes apart of a large corporate run entity.   At Easy Living you control your Home Care service and selection guided by our expertise and insight.  At Easy Living caring is more than just a business, it is our philosophy in action every day! 

 

Easy Living works with only the best Atlanta caregivers. Many of our clients have used our service for 10+ years and the feedback is consistent in superior levels of satisfaction. We are your Home Care staffing expert - we've been assisting Atlanta families for over 20 years!

For more information on professional In-Home service for your loved one, please contact Easy Living services today at (770) 442-8664.

 

Topics: elder care, Home Care, senior care, caregiver, homecare, dementia, cancer, Alzheimers