Newsletter Archive

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2018 │ Edition 3

Kit Whittington

Dear Friends,

Spring has sprung and summer’s almost here. The warm weather and long days seem to offer more time for both relaxing and getting things done. It’s a great time to get out and enjoy the area. Spring in St. Louis is great for catching a baseball game or a trip to the park – even if it’s just a drive through beautiful Forest Park.

For many, spring is a time to turn a new leaf by making changes or starting something new. At SHC, we’re excited to announce that we’ve welcomed a new nurse to the office staff. Jessi Gewinner, RN, has joined our staff and will be helping Ginny and Jane perform skilled nursing visits, monitor changes in client condition and medication, and field medical questions from caregivers, clients and their families.

I hope everyone has a wonderful spring season and stays cool in the approaching summer.

Yours in Service,
Kit Whittington
RN, BSN, Founder

Get to Know…Jessi Gewinner, RN, Case Manager 

Jessi is the newest member of SHC’s Nursing Department, where she performs skilled nursing visits, monitors changes in client condition and medications, and answers general medical questions from families and caregivers.

Fun facts about Jessi:

  • Loves to get outside – going on hikes, visiting parks and having barbeques
  • Guilty pleasures are Diet Coke and French Fries
  • Favorite candy is sea salt and dark chocolate caramels
  • Favorite city is Seattle because she loves the Northwest, the ocean and thinks it’s a great city to walk.

Ida – A Passion for Care

For Ida, an SHC caregiver since 2011, caring reaches far beyond a mere profession. According to Ida, she’s had a passion to provide care – for adults and children – her whole life.

When Ida isn’t caring for clients at SHC, she spends much of her time collecting and donating goods to her nine adopted children in Liberia. She has been doing this since 2004. It started when Ida, who was an orphan herself, went on vacation to Liberia and saw the need for help. Civil war in the country had left many kids without homes or parents.

Ida now has an orphanage and supports nine children, who she adopted as babies. She provides care for her adopted family by purchasing goods and taking donations from others. She then ships 55-gallon drums filled with supplies, such as clothing, notebooks, toiletries and nonperishable food.

Ida beams when she discusses the work that she does. “I find pleasure in it,” she says. “It makes me happy.”

Keep up the great work Ida – you’re an inspiration to us all!

6 Ways to Keep Your Mind Sharp

Maintaining your brain means more than challenging yourself intellectually. Exercise, healthy eating, and socializing are critical as well. The following brain-healthy activities can get you started:

Take a walk
Physical activity is closely linked to cognitive health. Regular 30-minute sessions of biking, gardening, yoga, or walking can be as effective as time at the gym.

Meet a friend for coffee
Staying socially connected is believed to play a major role in brain health. Conversation strengthens the connections between brain cells. Socializing may also help stimulate mood-boosting brain chemicals and decrease depression, which is a key risk factor for dementia.

Learn something new
Brain fitness is about learning something new that requires focused concentration. It could be mastering salsa, studying American history, or learning how to paint, as long as you haven’t done it before.

Cook with your grandchildren
Eating right helps keep you sharp — and can be social when you invite the kids into the kitchen. Prepare dishes that call for dark-skin fruits and vegetables. These have high levels of natural antioxidants. Entrees featuring cold-water fish are also wise choices. Nuts are a good between-meal snack — they're good sources of the antioxidant vitamin E.

Play the Wii
The popular Nintendo Wii game system lets players mimic the motions of sports like tennis, baseball, bowling, and boxing without leaving their living rooms. Various game systems have also introduced games that focus on sharpening skills such as memory, word, calculation, and problem-solving.

Help your grandkids with their homework
Helping children with schoolwork may force you to unearth long-buried equations or recall French vocabulary, and even push you to think critically about a piece of literature. This is all good for your cognitive health and your relationship with your favorite kids!


SHC Client Testimonial

Charlie, Anne and I could never begin to thank you for all the love, care and support he (we) received from SHC. It is comforting to know Charlie left this world exactly how he wanted…at home, peaceful and comfortable, and with the grace of God. All of your caregivers and support staff were critical in making that happen. We feel fortunate to have met so many caring folks.
                                                                                                Dave K.

Heart Attack Warning Signs

Some heart attacks are sudden and intense, but most of them start slowly, with mild pain or discomfort. Here are signs that can mean a heart attack is happening.

  • Chest discomfort. Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or that goes away and comes back. It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
  • Discomfort in other areas of the upper body. Symptoms can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
  • Shortness of breath. This feeling often comes along with chest discomfort. But it can also occur without chest discomfort.
  • Other signs may include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.

If you or someone you’re with has one or more of these signs, call 9-1-1 immediately. Go to the hospital right away.

If you’re the one having symptoms, and you can’t access the emergency medical services (EMS), have someone drive you to the hospital right away. Don’t drive yourself, unless you have absolutely no other option.

Source: American Heart Association

SHC University – June 16, 2018

Family Caregiving Tips from SHC’s Seasoned Staff

Take advantage of this unique opportunity to learn family caregiving tips from SHC’s nursing staff. The class provides insider information and tips for the non-professional caregiver. Learn safe and effective tools to use when caring for a parent or loved one.

If you are interested in attending this free class, please call 314-962-2666.