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All Posts Tagged: caregiver

Safe Proofing Your Home for Parkinson’s Disease


Parkinson’s disease presents many challenges for patients and their families. The physical symptoms of Parkinson’s can have a drastic impact on a person’s mobility and their ability to care for themselves. Tremors (shaking excessively), difficulty walking, and poor coordination are all common effects of Parkinson’s disease. Common psychiatric symptoms include depression, sleep disturbance, and dementia. These challenges can be minimized by making changes in a patient’s life and physical environment.

Parkinson’s is a progressive disease, the symptoms of which worsen over time. In the early stages, patients are often able to retain a degree of independence, cooking meals, bathing, dressing, and doing errands and chores on their own. As their symptoms worsen, however, people with Parkinson’s often require assistance performing tasks. It is important to take proactive steps in the early stages to ensure maximum safety and quality of life as the disease progresses.

One of the main risks for people with Parkinson’s is hazardous conditions inside their home. Since coordination and mobility is compromised, Parkinson’s patients are at a greater risk for tripping, falling, and running into objects. Patients and their caregivers must address potential hazards before injuries occur. Uneven surfaces – such as area rugs and thick carpets – present tripping hazards. Wood floors and thin carpeting are preferable, as many people with Parkinson’s develop a shuffling walk which makes trips more likely. Electrical cords, lamps, and other objects at floor level should be removed or secured to reduce the risk of falls. Sharp corners and protruding objects can also present a danger, and should be covered or removed. Fragile or delicate objects should be placed in a safe place where they can’t be easily knocked over. Grab bars to assist with mobility can be tremendously helpful, especially in bathrooms next to the toilet and bath tub. Taking these preventative steps will better ensure a safe home environment and allow people with Parkinson’s to enjoy greater a quality of life.

Edison Home Health Care is happy to advise and assist you or any loved one who seek appropriate care of Parkinsons disease. Give us a call at 888-311-1142, or fill out a contact form and we will respond shortly.

Parkinson Home Care New York

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Gradually Transitioning from Independence to Dependence with Alzheimer’s


For many people with Alzheimer’s, an eventual loss of independence is inevitable. The effects of the disease, which include memory loss, confusion, difficulty communicating, and emotional disturbances, make it difficult for people suffering from the disease to care for themselves. In-home care or relocating to a residential care facility are often necessary in order to ensure safety and comfort for Alzheimer’s patients as the disease progresses. Loved ones and professional caregivers can help assist those with Alzheimer’s to perform daily tasks. Despite the need for outside help, people with Alzheimer’s can greatly benefit from maintaining a degree of independence, especially in the early stages of the disease.

While family members and caregivers may have the best of intentions when helping patients perform daily tasks, it is possible to create “excess dependency.” It can be difficult to watch someone struggle with a task. This may cause personal frustration and an overwhelming need to intervene – even when the person with Alzheimer’s is capable of performing the task themselves with minimal guidance. Rather than immediately taking control when difficulty arises, caregivers can instead offer gentle encouragement and verbal cues. Breaking up larger jobs into smaller, simple steps can make things much easier for the patient. Activities such as meal preparation, dressing, and bathing can all be modified to accommodate the abilities of the specific Alzheimer’s sufferer. Remaining patient and open as a caregiver allows those with Alzheimer’s to maintain a sense of independence and involvement in their own care.

Remaining active and engaged with daily life is essential to preserving a sense of meaning and self-worth among Alzheimer’s suffers. A sudden transition from complete independence to complete dependency can lead to depression and worsen symptoms of the disease. Promoting independence for as long as possible creates a gradual transition from independent living to dependence on caregivers. Making sure to involve Alzheimer’s patients in daily life to the extent that their condition allows is a healthy way to foster a personal sense of meaning and maintain a good quality of life.

Edison Home Health Care is happy to advise and assist you or any loved one who seek appropriate care of Alzheimer’s disease. Give us a call at 888-311-1142, or fill out a contact form and we will respond shortly.

Alzheimer Home Care New York

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Maintaining Independence with Alzheimer’s


Memory loss, confusion, and difficulties communicating have a major impact on the ability of Alzheimer’s patients to function independently. Depression and feelings of helplessness can develop when there is a complete loss of independence. Maintaining a healthy level of independence and autonomy can promote a sense of meaning and value in the life of Alzheimer’s patients.

It is common for family members and caregivers to assume that someone with Alzheimer’s is incapable of performing even basic activities of daily living without assistance. Observing patients struggle with certain activities can cause anxiety in caregivers, who often feel the need to step in and take complete responsibility for all tasks. Many caregivers may underestimate the patient’s abilities, but people with Alzheimer’s have several capabilities. By being patient and providing support, caregivers can encourage independence and help Alzheimer’s patients to play an active role in their own care.

A proactive approach to the challenges of Alzheimer’s can improve the quality of life for patients. Instead of immediately stepping in when difficulty arises, caregivers can provide gentle verbal directions. Breaking up tasks into easily manageable steps, creating a routine, and allowing sufficient time to do things are all great ways to help patients take part in daily activities. Showing patience and acceptance will provide patients with the confidence and support needed to remain engaged in life.

Edison Home Health Care is happy to advise and assist you or any loved one who seek appropriate care of Alzheimer’s disease. Give us a call at 888-311-1142, or fill out a contact form and we will respond shortly.

Alzheimer Home Care New York

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Non-Medical Approaches for Alzheimer’s


While there is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, there are interventions that can ease symptoms and promote quality of life. Symptoms like confusion, hallucinations, irritability, anxiety, depression, restlessness, and sleep disturbances are all common effects of the disease that may respond to medical treatment. However, because medications often have undesirable side-effects, it is advisable to try non-drug interventions as a first step.

There are many things you can do to help your loved one cope with these changes – without the use of medication. Simple environmental considerations can all help to promote calm and reduce distress including: avoiding background noise, lowering television volume, eliminating clutter, limiting visual distractions, maintaining a comfortable temperature, and providing adequate lighting. Behavioral outbursts often have their origin in physical discomfort: many people with Alzheimer’s lose the ability to communicate issues they are encountering. Looking for and addressing the root causes of disturbing behaviors is vital. Pain and other physical discomfort such as hunger or a full bladder can often trigger behavioral symptoms. By closely observing your loved one, responding to their distress, and anticipating their needs, you can help to ease behavioral symptoms without the need for medication.

In addition to a patient’s environment, entertainment and activity can also be used as treatment. Music therapy is a popular route because familiar songs arouse memories. Animals are s great source of enjoyment. Studies have shown that pets reduce depression related to Alzheimer’s. It is important to consider what kind of pet would be the best match for you loved one based on health condition and average activity level. Other useful practices include aromatherapy, craft projects, and participation in religious services.

Edison Home Health Care is happy to advise and assist you or any loved one who seek appropriate care of Alzheimer’s disease. Give us a call at 888-311-1142, or fill out a contact form and we will respond shortly.

Alzheimer Home Care New York

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Knowing When to Get Help


People suffering from Alzheimer’s must contend with difficult challenges, one of which is adapting to major lifestyle changes. The memory loss and confusion that accompany the disease make it difficult to perform daily tasks. The cognitive and emotional changes that occur as Alzheimer’s progresses can be frightening and cause great distress. Losing the ability to communicate can be extremely frustrating. Many of those in its early stages may try to hide or downplay the extent of their symptoms to others. However, acknowledging that there is a problem and taking early action is the best way to prepare for the future.

Memory loss is one of the earliest and most easily recognizable symptoms of Alzheimer’s. While a certain degree of forgetfulness is normal – misplacing your keys, forgetting a friend’s birthday, being unable to recall certain details of a conversation – more pervasive memory loss is an indication that you may need help. Routinely placing objects in inappropriate places such as putting your keys in the microwave or your wallet in the fridge should raise awareness. Other symptoms include getting lost in familiar surroundings or forgetting the names of close friends and family members can be indications of severe memory loss associated with Alzheimer’s. When these types of symptoms occur, your safety and wellbeing can be compromised. Getting lost, using medications improperly, or failing to maintain good eating and sleeping habits are just a few of the high risks that accompany memory loss.

When memory is severely compromised and daily life tasks become too difficult to perform independently, it’s time to get outside assistance. Although it can be difficult to ask for help, it is essential for your life. Attempting to do more than you are capable of can not only put your health and safety in jeopardy, it can also lead to greater confusion, frustration, and depression. Getting support from caregivers and loved ones can help ease the transition our of full independence and insure that your life is as comfortable as possible.

Edison Home Health Care is happy to provide home health care for you or any loved one. Give us a call at 888-311-1142, or fill out a contact form and we will respond shortly.

Home Health Care New Yrok

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