2016 │ Edition 1
Dear Valued Client of SHC,
The beginning of the year is naturally an exciting time. Setting and reaching goals is an important step in any business. The integrity of Seniors Home Care stands on the commitment to “do the right thing”. Not only does this build trust, it also maintains a sound foundation for a company.
In 2016 there will be challenges we will face , many out of our control, that affect our clients, caregivers and Seniors Home Care. Because you depend on us to run Seniors Home Care efficiently and effectively, We will meet these challenges head on.
For almost 30 years now, Seniors Home Care has been conducting a service based on our core value “integrity”. This demands courage and delivers peace of mind for all concerned. As we start this new year, I invite you to read the first of our 10 core values to the right. It is a great reminder of an important basic way of life.
Yours in service,
RN, Founder, CEO
The First of Seniors Home Care’s 10 Core Values
I strive to hold myself to a standard of excellence in my care and life.
Integrity means being true to ourselves and honest, upright and decent in our dealings with others. Guided by integrity, our actions align with our principles. It becomes the basis for both reputation and self-respect. Integrity demands courage but delivers peace of mind.
Preparing for Productive Doctor Visits
The benefits of a good relationship with your doctor are universal. As age brings new conditions and treatments needing attention, it becomes even more important to talk often and comfortably with your doctor.
A good doctor-patient relationship should be a partnership, allowing open communication and understanding. The following tips will help you prepare for and get the most out of your doctor’s appointments:
List your concerns. Make a list of what you want to discuss. If you have numerous concerns, prioritize them and ask about the most important topics first.
Take information with you. Keep a list of all prescriptions, over-the-counter medicines, vitamins and herbal remedies or supplements that you take (and include dosage). Some people opt to keep them all in a bag and take them to the appointment.
Consider bringing a family member, friend or caregiver. Before the appointment, tell them what you hope to accomplish with the visit. This companion can help remember discussion points, take notes and help remember what the doctor said.
Be sure you can see and hear as well as possible. Many older adults require glasses or hearing aids. Make sure to bring and use them. Inform the doctor and staff of any helpful requests such as speaking up or slowly. If you miss something, ask them to repeat it or clarify.
Plan to update the doctor. Let them know what has happened since your last visit. Have you had any hospital visits or seen any specialists? Mention any changes in appetite, weight, sleep or energy level. This also includes any changes to medications.
A caregiver can be a great ally for productive doctor visits. SHC caregivers and case managers work closely to monitor and advocate for our clients’ health. In addition to transporting an individual to a doctor’s appointment, caregivers can take notes and act as an advocate during the appointment. We also maintain an up-to-date list of client medications.
If you would like to learn more about how SHC could help you or an elderly loved one, please contact us.
Source: SHC Blog
Make a Resolution for Healthy Vision
January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month
Seniors are at an increased risk for developing glaucoma. Glaucoma is a group of disorders that damage the optic nerve and can lead to vision loss and blindness.
Although there is no cure for glaucoma, early detection and treatment can help prevent or control vision loss.
You can help protect your vision by having a comprehensive dilated exam at least once every two years. Lowering eye pressure in the early stages of glaucoma slows progression of the disease and helps save vision.
If you are being treated for glaucoma, be sure to take your glaucoma medicine every day and see your eye care professional regularly.
Protect Senior Skin from the Winter Weather
During this time of year, it’s common for skin to dry out.
The effects of winter on our skin are not caused just by the cold air outside, but also by the dry warm air indoors.
It is common during winter months that older adults’ skin need special care to alleviate the symptoms of winter’s harshness.
Indications of Dry Winter Skin
- Flaky skin
- Dry and itchy skin
- Cracking skin
- Bleeding and pain
Tips to Protect Skin in Winter Weather
- If your home air feels dry, try a humidifier to keep the moisture level at a higher level.
- Don’t use hot water on faces and feet, as it tends to sap the natural moisture from skin.
- Take short showers and baths in warm (not hot) water.
- Use a mild cleanser to clean skin, especially when it is itchy.
- Apply lotions and moisturizers to areas such as face, hands and feet frequently, especially after washing and while skin is still damp. If your skin is very dry, an ointment or cream may be more effective than lotion.
- Read labels, because for some people the fragrance in lotions can irritate the skin more or trigger allergies.
- When drying off, use a soft cloth and pat the skin (rather than rub).
- If your hands are very irritated, apply petroleum jelly before bed, and wear waterproof gloves when immersing hands in water for more than brief periods of time.
- If hands need to be cleaned frequently, use a hand sanitizer instead of hot water.
- Drink plenty of water (even if you don’t feel thirsty). Don’t wait for your lips to get dry.
Dermatologist Visit May Be Needed
Your skin can be affected by more than winter dryness. Other factors include aging and changes in hormones that cause the skin to become thinner, medications, irritants used in cleaning solutions and medical skin conditions such as eczema.
If your skin does not improve using the tips above, you may want to have them checked by a dermatologist in case a stronger treatment plan is needed.
Staying healthy and hydrated during the winter months is an important part in keeping seniors healthy!
Winter Season Tips
Staying safe and warm during winter months can be a challenge, especially for seniors. Three major threats we try to prevent are the flu, hypothermia, and falling.
Hypothermia begins slowly. When a person’s body temperature falls below 94 degrees, hypothermia sets in. Common symptoms include:
- Difficulty speaking
- Slow breathing
- Increased irritability
Ways to prevent hypothermia:
- Eat nourishing meals.
- Drink warm beverages.
- Have your furnace checked and cleaned.
- Stay warm during the day and night.
- Use extra blankets if necessary.
Slips and Falls
Many people fall in their home each day. Most falls result in a bump or bruise, however, there are situations where a fall causes permanent injury or even death. For the elderly, it is important to do everything you can to minimize potential falls. Here are a few tips:
- During the snow/ice season, get help shoveling snow and applying salt to ice.
- Consider wearing a medical alert button.
- Have emergency numbers within reach.
Seniors and those with chronic diseases are at most risk for the flu. To help avoid the flu this season follow these simple suggestions:
- Receive the flu vaccine annually.
- Eat three regular meals and drink 6-8 glasses of water every day. Consult your physician or a dietitian for special dietary requirements.
- Use good handwashing techniques and use antibacterial soap.
- Don't share your food or drinks with anyone.
- Try to get an adequate amount of sleep at night.
Source: SHC Blog
SHC Client Testimonial
“Each and every one of the care people from SHC were gentle and compassionate. Each person stood out and not a one was a disappointment.” Mary S.