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Senior Safety Tips: The Assistive Devices Many Seniors Aren’t Utilizing

Happy senior safety leaning on cane

Think about the various tools you utilize each day – your phone, hairbrush, toothbrush – simple items, but ones you can’t imagine living without. For many seniors, there are basic adaptive devices available that could mean the difference between living at home and facing a move to assisted living. However nearly 50% of older adults living at home are not utilizing these handy tools – despite the fact that prices are minimal.

A newly released National Health and Aging Trends Study estimated the ability of seniors to accomplish tasks such as rising unassisted from a sitting position and walking, and found that a large number of the participants could benefit from assistive devices.

Not only that, but the danger of senior falls from the lack of simple assistive devices is increased, resulting in hospitalizations, serious injury, and disability that could easily have been prevented. In fact, once these devices were made available to older adults, based on research, disability rates for older adults dropped by 50 percent, along with a decrease in pain levels and an increase in the ability to independently perform activities of daily living.

Dr. Kenneth Lam, author of the study, explained, “It’s a technical problem which, unlike so much of aging, is actually solvable. In the hospital, I can order an M.R.I. and charge the system thousands of dollars. But down the road, that won’t help patients not fall. What happens when they get home?”

Johns Hopkins in Baltimore has recently launched a program looking to change this by introducing inexpensive assistive tools to seniors. Through several in-home visits with an occupational therapist, nurse, and repair specialist, needs are identified and resolved. That may mean installing grab bars in the bathroom, removing fall hazards, or adding a shower chair or raised toilet seat. Small changes such as these can make a substantial difference in an older adult’s capacity to safely and independently manage activities of daily living.

At Responsive Home Care, we are pleased to offer in-home evaluations to recommend modifications to the home environment that enhance safety and help seniors remain independent and in control. We can also help improve senior’s comfort, safety, and independence through services such as:

  • Preparing nutritious meals and ensuring adequate hydration for seniors
  • Providing assistance as necessary with personal care needs for safe showering/bathing, getting dressed, etc.
  • Maintaining a clean and organized home
  • And more

Contact us at 954-486-6440 to schedule your assessment today!

Best Ways to Manage Alzheimer’s and Dementia Behaviors of Concern

caregiver comforting senior womanAwkwardness. Discomfort. Disbelief. Shame. Each one of these feelings can cycle through a family caregiver’s heart when someone you care about with Alzheimer’s disease showcases disinhibited behaviors, for example:

  • Rude or tactless comments
  • Inappropriate sexual advances or remarks
  • Removal of clothing at improper times
  • And other socially unacceptable actions

The complicated changes that occur to the brain in Alzheimer’s can cause a complete turnaround in an older adult’s personality and behaviors, for example, a formerly genteel grandma suddenly swearing like a sailor. For somebody who is disoriented, uncomfortable, confused, or has essentially forgotten social graces and skills, these behaviors are actually quite common, consequently it’s crucial to know how to best manage them if and when they develop in someone you love.

Responsive Home Care’s Alzheimer’s care specialists recommend trying the following tactics:

  • See if there’s a solvable problem creating the behaviors, such as a physical illness, medication side effects, the need to utilize the rest room, environment-induced anxiety, etc.
  • Remind yourself that the dementia is to blame, and respond patiently and gently, without overreacting or lashing out in anger.
  • Help the senior loved one remain involved in appropriate activities in accordance with his / her particular interests. If the person becomes agitated with a specific activity, switch to something else, or move to a new room in the house or outside when possible.
  • Pay attention to clothing choices if removing clothes at inappropriate times is an issue. If the older adult has been wearing pants without zippers for comfort and ease, you might want to change to something a bit more challenging to remove when out in public, for example.
  • Be certain that each of the individual’s physical needs are met to circumvent problematic behaviors. Maintain a comfy temperature in the house, keep plenty of healthy snacks and drinks handy, and recommend regular physical exercise and movement.
  • Offer proper physical contact often such as hugs, holding the person’s hand, or rubbing his/her back, when welcomed by the senior, communicating reassurance to relieve anxiety.

It is also beneficial to ensure you’ve got enough time for scheduled breaks to tend to your personal self-care needs and ease the stress that is frequently inherent in taking care of a senior loved one with Alzheimer’s disease. Responsive Home Care’s caregivers are thoroughly trained and experienced in effective, compassionate dementia care, and are here for you with as much or as little respite care as necessary. Call us at 954-486-6440 for additional helpful resources as well as to schedule a free of charge in-home consultation for more information about how we can help.

A New Cancer Treatment for All Types of the Disease Could Be on the Horizon

3d illustration proteins with lymphocytes , t cells or cancer cells

The T-cell destroys threats to our bodies, including cancer cells.

We are already aware of how incredible our body’s immune system is in fighting invading bacteria and viruses and restoring us to health following an illness, even so, the most recent conclusions from a report by Cardiff University are poised to generate an innovative and unforeseen advancement: halting cancer in its tracks.

Researchers uncovered a certain kind of immune cell, a T-cell, found in our blood, which can scan and destroy threats – including a wide selection of cancer cells: kidney, prostate, colon, lung, breast, ovarian, cervical, blood, and many others. And incredibly, all normal tissue is left unaffected.

The newly uncovered T-cell works closely with a specific molecule found on the surface of each cell inside our body, known as the MR1 molecule. The theory is that the MR1 is alerting the T-cell of any cancer cell malformations. Garry Dolton, who was a part of the research team, points out, “We are the first to describe a T-cell that finds MR1 in cancer cells – that hasn’t been done before; this is the first of its kind.”

While there is currently a comparable kind of therapy, called CAR-T, that has shown extraordinary outcomes in bringing individuals from a terminal status to complete remission, it is only shown to be effective in specific types of cancer, and not “solid cancers” (those that form tumors). This new cancer treatment has demonstrated thus far to impact all forms of the disease. Here’s how it is projected to get results:

  • Blood is extracted from a patient diagnosed with cancer.
  • The blood is filtered to remove T-cells.
  • A particular variety of harmless virus is injected into the T-cells, allowing them to pick up on cancer cells.
  • These cells are then replicated in a lab, and injected back into the patient.

Researchers have been tremendously successful in animal trials, and with additional safety checks, the next step will likely be human trials. As stated by Daniel Davis, professor of immunology at the University of Manchester, “There is no question that it’s a very exciting discovery, both for advancing our basic knowledge about the immune system and for the possibility of future new medicines.”

While we keep an eye out for additional info regarding this new cancer treatment, you can depend upon Responsive Home Care for the finest quality care for individuals with cancer as well as other chronic conditions. Just some of the countless ways we are able to assist you include:

Take the first step to a better quality of life for a senior you love. Call the best home care company in Fort Lauderdale, FL at 954-486-6440 and ask for an in-home meeting.

Have You Heard About These Alzheimer’s Breakthroughs?

microscope with lab glassware, science laboratory research and development concept

Learn more from the best home care company in Fort Lauderdale FL about these latest Alzheimer’s breakthroughs.

Groundbreaking research is zeroing in ever nearer to the eradication of Alzheimer’s disease, this time around two medications already developed and approved by the FDA. This permits accelerated clinical trials and hopefully fast-tracking us nearer to a treatment.

The first, surprisingly, is a medication utilized in treating HIV. Scientists are finding that the genetic blueprint in Alzheimer’s patients is altered as the disease advances, very similar to the genetic shuffling which occurs in those with HIV. The theory is that putting a halt to the movement of these certain genes may prevent the progression of the disease.

According to lead investigator Jerold Chun, “For the first time, we can see what may cause the disease. We also uncovered a potential near-term treatment.”

Secondly, scientists at Mount Sinai have found that medications used to reduce blood sugar in diabetics, such as metformin, might have a direct effect in decreasing the plaques and tangles connected with Alzheimer’s disease. Although this may be helpful right away for diabetics with Alzheimer’s who are already taking this medication, further research is necessary before testing on Alzheimer’s patients without diabetes as a result of potential for dangerously low blood sugar as well as other negative effects. Encouragingly, the research results add another piece to the puzzle of dementia.

These findings “…point us to the biological mechanisms that are being affected by those drugs. Hopefully, now we can find drugs that would have similar effects on the brain without changing the blood sugar levels,” said Vahram Haroutunian, professor of psychiatry and neuroscience of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.

With as many as 6 million Americans currently diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, and a predicted leap to 14 million diagnoses in the next 40 years, it’s imperative for medical scientists to gain ground on more fully comprehending the cause, effective treatment options, and ultimately a cure, for this disease which has truly become an epidemic.

The Alzheimer’s care experts at Responsive Home Care will continue to track these and other advances, while providing the top quality care that enhances general wellbeing while providing family members much-needed peace of mind. Our caregivers are fully trained and exceptionally skilled in helping manage some of the more difficult aspects of Alzheimer’s disease, such as wandering, aggression, sundowning, inappropriate behaviors, and many more. And our objective is always to be certain seniors with dementia have the ability to live life to its fullest potential, while remaining secure and comfortable at home.

Give us a call at 954-486-6440 to learn more or to request resources that will help you and your senior loved one navigate the experience of Alzheimer’s disease.