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Atlanta Caregiver & Home Care Articles

Sudden Behavioral Changes in the Elderly

Posted by Debby Franklin on Aug 22, 2019 1:23:28 PM

dreamstime_6428137caregiver and woman

 

 

 

A serious and potentially dangerous complication for elderly loved ones is the onset of "Delirium".  The start is rapid and can begin within hours.  The condition is characterized as "worse than usual".  Delirium is dangerous because it puts an older person at risk for falls, a slower recovery, prolonged hospitalization, and even a higher chance of death.  

Identifying Delirium

  • Decrease in attention span, lack of focus
  • Delusions
  • Disorientation, confusion
  • Intermittent confusion
  • Cognitive change
  • Altered consciousness
  • Hallucinations
  • Tremors
  • Decrease in short term memory
  • Drowsy and quiet behavior, withdrawal
  • Difficulty in following conversation
  • Agitation

Increased Risk for Delirium

  • Severe infection
  • Heart, Liver or Kidney problems
  • Certain medications
  • Low sodium
  • Dehydration
  • Surgery complications
  • Inadequately treated pain or constipation
  • Alcohol or drug intoxication or withdrawal
  • Organ failure
  • Urinary tract infection (UTI)

Ways to prevent Delirium

  • Minimize meds that are known to cause confusion
  • Hydration - Is your loved one getting adequate fluids?
  • Check for infections
  • Constipation issues
  • Is there a UTI?
  • Be aware of the possible causes. Take necessary steps quickly to address the symptom.
  • Could there be sleep deprivation?
  • Look for risk factors
  • Provide mental stimulation

Busy work and family schedules may prevent you from being with your loved one as much as you would like.  That's where a caregiver from an In-Home Care agency like Easy Living Services, Inc. can be an invaluable resource.  Rely on a professional caregiver to provide companionship, supplemental personal care, and to serve as your loved one's advocate when you must be away. A rained caregiver can fill in family care gaps and provide peace of mind.

Find out more........contact Easy Living Services at 770-442-8664

 

 

Topics: infection, Chronic Medical Condition, hospital care, UTI

Germs Are Everywhere - Play It Safe

Posted by Debby Franklin on Jul 25, 2014 4:09:00 PM

germs, bacteria, infection, virusGerms viral, bacteria, or fungal can remain active on most surfaces for several days.  This includes surfaces made of stainless steel, wood, plastic, or even paper in a magazine.  What most people consider to be the germiest surfaces may not be so bad, while some of the most germ-ridden areas are not what most people expect.  Most people consider Port-a-Potties and public toilets to be the worst places in terms of surface germs.  However these don't even come close to what you'll find on ATM machines, phone receivers, and elevator buttons.  

Recent tests studies reveal just how germ-ridden some of the surfaces that people touch every day can be.  Here are the Germ Hot Spots:

  • 71% of gas pump handles
  • 68% of mailbox handles
  • 43% of escalator rails
  • 41% of ATM buttons
  • 40% of parking meters
  • 35% of crosswalk buttons and vending machine buttons
Other germ surfaces:
  • Cellphones
  • Public soap dispensers
  • Airport bathrooms
Keep in mind that when you touch a surface it is transmitted to your hands. Then if you touch your eyes or rub your nose or lips, or when you eat or in any way get your fingers in contact with a mucous surface,...you have infected yourself.  
At home, the kitchen sink is one of the places with the most germs - harboring more germs than the bathroom!  The most contaminated sites are those that tend to remain moist.  The dishcloth, toilet bowl, garbage can, refrigerator, and bathroom doorknob are also high on the list.  
What about work?  Follow these tips on how to keep your computer "germ" free:

Hot spots for germs in the office:

Think about all the "public" surfaces you touch on your way to work – railings, door handles, coins and tokens, cash machines, elevator buttons and more. Then, when you get to your destination, washing your hands probably isn't the first thing you do. Instead, you probably grab a cup of coffee and turn on your computer. If you power up before you clean up, all the germs and bacteria that commuted with you are transferred from your hands to your workstation. Ugh! And then, if someone else sits down at your computer, you've got all the germs that tagged along with them, too.

Before you begin, remember the two golden rules of computer cleaning:

  1. Be sure the computer is off before you clean any part of it – keyboard, monitor screen, mouse, printer or housings.
  2. Never spray cleaner directly onto any part of the computer. Spray it onto a cloth, and then gently wipe.

Keyboard: Clean the keys with a cleaning wipe or a cloth sprayed with an all-purpose cleaner. Make this the first thing you do every morning before you turn on the computer. To remove the dirt, dust and other debris that gets caught between the keys, turn it upside down and shake gently to dislodge the particles. An air duster is also a great aid in removing all these bits and pieces that get lodged inside the keyboard.

Mouse: It's also a good idea to clean the mouse before the start of the workday. Use a cleaning wipe or a cloth sprayed with an all-purpose cleaner.

Monitor: Use a microfiber cloth, either dry or dampened with clean water, or a product specially formulated for computer screens. If you use anything else, you run the risk of damaging the screen. Clean the monitor several times a week, as a dirty monitor can cause eyestrain.

Surrounding surfaces (including computer housings and desktops): Since there are probably coffee and food stains lurking amidst the dust, use an all-purpose cleaner with a disinfectant.

Printer: Consider how often you push the button on the printer and how seldom you think about cleaning it!

Telephone: Even if you're the only one using it, it's still transmission central for germs and bacteria that cause ear, nose and eye infections. Clean it daily using a hard-surface disinfectant cleaner or a wipe.

Wash your hands frequently and always before you prepare to eat food or touch your eyes, nose, and mouth.  Carry gel sanitizer with you to use on your hands after touching a strange surface.  There is such a thing as overdoing it when it comes to hygiene so balance is the answer.  Keeping your hands clean is the best way to avoid becoming sick from germs.  

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: germs, bacteria, infection, virus