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2016 │ Edition 2

Kit Whittington

Dear Clients of Seniors Home Care,

It’s been said that if a job is worth doing, it’s worth doing well. When I was a younger woman of 27 and caregiving for my paternal grandmother, I was not sure how I would handle all of my responsibilities. You could say, my self confidence in this area was underdeveloped. As I think about SHC’s Second Core Value, Self Worth, I recognize that it was through caring for her and starting SHC that I was able to exalt my own true self-worth.

I believe that for myself, and many professional and family caregivers, there is potential uncovered by serving others.

Through the years, I have experienced, and heard from countless other caregivers, who love their work because they feel they receive so much in return for their effort. Each person’s varied comments all exude self-worth – as they strive to provide an environment of dignity and safety for their client or loved one, what they receive and learn is very valuable and helps increase the strength and stamina to accomplish all we are capable of.

Yours in service,
Kit Whittington, RN, BSN

The Second of Seniors Home Care’s 10 Core Values


I strive to be respectful of others’ experiences and differences and realize that everyone is important and unique.

Self Worth is how much you value yourself. You cannot value the things most important in life, without first valuing yourself. A valid sense of self-worth is necessary to attain love, peace, joy, power and a sound mind. A person must care for themselves before they can properly care for others.

The Inside Scoop on Seniors & Nutrition

Eating well plays a key role in staying healthy and independent in later years of life.

Why is Nutrition Important to Seniors?

  • Promotes good health and helps fight chronic disease.
  • Promotes energy and maintaining a healthy weight.
  • Maintains muscle mass, which helps prevent falls and injury.
  • Helps maintain proper digestion and bowel function.
  • Reduces unwanted side effects of medications.

How to Maintain a Nutrient Rich Diet

As your body ages and metabolism slows, it becomes more important to seek foods with a lot of nutrients and fewer calories. It’s also important to know how different foods and supplements may interact with medications.

  • Fruits and vegetables have important vitamins and minerals and little to no fat or cholesterol.
  • Grains are foods made from wheat, rice, oats, cornmeal or barley. Whole grains are better sources of energy, fiber and nutrients than refined grains, such as white flour or white rice.
  • Dairy provides calcium and vitamin D to maintain strong bones.
  • Protein helps build and maintain muscle and skin. Seafood, meats and poultry are good sources of protein.
  • Liquids help prevent constipation and dehydration. Besides water, other good liquids include tea, milk and 100% fruit juice.

Speak with a doctor before making dietary changes. Their knowledge of existing medical conditions and medications will help pinpoint foods to include or avoid.

At SHC, nutrition services are a key factor to helping seniors maintain safety and independence. If we may help you or a loved one, please contact us.

Source: SHC Blog

Fun Facts About Saint Patrick’s Day

You may wear green on Saint Patrick’s Day, but there may be a lot you don’t know about this holiday…


Saint Patrick’s color was blue. The color green only became associated with the big day after it was linked to the Irish independence movement in the late 18th century.


Although he made his mark by introducing Christianity to Ireland in the year 432, Patrick was born to Roman parents in Scotland or Wales in the late fourth century.


New York City’s Saint Patrick’s Day Parade is one of the world’s largest parades. Since 1762, 250,000 marchers have traipsed up Fifth Avenue on foot.


Chicago has been celebrating Saint Patrick by dumping green dye into the Chicago River since 1962. It takes 40 tons of dye to get the river to a suitably festive shade!


For most of the 20th century, Saint Patrick’s Day was considered a strictly religious holiday in Ireland, meaning the nation’s pubs were closed for business on March 17. In 1970, the day was converted to a national holiday, and the stout resumed flowing.


According to Irish legend, Saint Patrick used the three-leafed plant as a metaphor for the Holy Trinity when he was first introducing Christianity to Ireland.


A 2012 estimate pegged the total amount spent on beer for Saint Patrick’s Day celebrations at $245 million.


SHC Client Testimonial

"SHC provided a group of qualified, client-centered professional staff for my client for over a two year period. We ended up with a core staff of four individuals who were the backbone to the success of continuing a quality day-to-day life. They worked together for the good and wellness of the client. I found SHC’s caregivers a quality group. They were in every sense of the word a team."
                                Mary M.
                                Geriatric Care Manager

March is National Kidney Month

Kidneys are important because they:

  • Filter blood
  • Keep the right amount of fluids in the body
  • Help make red blood cells
  • Help keep blood pressure under control

Risk factors for kidney disease include:

  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Being 60 years of age or older
  • Having a family member with kidney disease, diabetes, or high blood pressure
  • Being African American, Hispanic, Asian, Pacific Islander, American Indian, or Alaska Native

Over time, kidney disease can:

  • Get worse
  • Lead to kidney failure
  • Cause heart and blood vessel disease
  • Cause other health problems

People with risk factors should get tested regularly because:

  • In the early stages of kidney disease, most people don’t have symptoms
  • Kidney disease can be treated

Ways to protect kidneys include:

  • Keep blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol under control
  • Lose weight, if needed
  • Eat healthy meals
  • Take all medicines as prescribed
  • Get regular exercise
  • Don’t smoke
  • Limit alcohol
  • Avoid some over-the-counter medicines (such as aspirin, naxoproxin, or ibuprofen) because they can harm kidneys.


Healthy Sleep Tips

Healthy sleep habits can make a big difference in your quality of life. Try to keep the following sleep practices on a consistent basis:

  1. Stick to a sleep schedule of the same bedtime and wake up time, even on the weekends. 
  2. Practice a relaxing bedtime ritual. Separate your sleep time from activities that can cause excitement, stress or anxiety. 
  3. If you have trouble sleeping, avoid naps, especially in the afternoon. If you find that you can't fall asleep at bedtime, eliminating even short catnaps may help.
  4. Exercise daily. Even light exercise is better than no activity.
  5. Evaluate your room. It should be cool (between 60 and 67 degrees), dark and free from noise that can disturb your sleep.
  6. Sleep on a comfortable mattress and pillows. 
  7. Use bright light to help manage your body clock. Avoid bright light in the evening and expose yourself to sunlight in the morning to keep your body clock in check.
  8. Avoid alcohol, cigarettes, and heavy meals in the evening. Alcohol, cigarettes and caffeine can disrupt sleep. Avoid eating large meals for two to three hours before bedtime.
  9. Wind down. Spend the last hour before bed doing a calming activity such as reading. Electronic devices can make it hard to fall asleep because the light from the screen is activating to the brain.
  10. If you can't sleep, go into another room and do something relaxing until you feel tired. Use your bed only for sleep to strengthen the association between bed and sleep.
If you’re still having trouble sleeping, speak with your doctor. You may also benefit from recording your sleep in a sleep diary to help you evaluate common patterns or issues you may see with your sleep or sleeping habits.