We believe in sharing what we’ve learned about the home health care industry and all related topics to help and support you. Our variety of blogs feature insights, experience and news about aging, healthy lifestyle, and overall well-being. We are continually expanding the blog posting, please expect new publishing’s every two weeks, enjoy the reading. The writer’s opinion doesn’t necessarily reflect Vitae Cares position. However, we encourage, appreciate, and try to stimulate a culture of discussion and even dispute.

Palliative Care and Hospice Care Are Essential to Improve the Life of Elderly Patients and Their Families

 Social Media Team   Friday, November 10, 2017   0

Palliative and hospice care are similar yet distinct. Understanding the differences can help in making the right choice for the quality of life and comfort of a patient.

Palliative care, an approach that prevents and relieves suffering

A palliative treatment involves a combination of support and therapy and aims to ease symptoms; it is an option when a loved one is seriously ill and searching for a cure or treatment that works. Specialists work with a patient’s caregivers and doctors to identify issues ill and old women sleeping in a hospital bedefficiently and maintain care without severely disrupting the patient’s comfort or well-being. Palliative care is most effective when considered early to meet the goal of improving quality of life, including physical, psychosocial, and spiritual health.

Palliative care, however, has no specific time designation; it is for people who are sick, no matter their life expectancy and goes along with curative treatment regardless of prognosis. Caregivers usually administer palliative services in a hospital, care facility, or nursing home; however; they can also deliver these services in the home.

Hospice care, a similar approach without curative treatment

People who are familiar with these services often associate them with sadness and loss. If someone has a severe illness that cannot be cured and has stopped treatment, or has chosen not to undergo a specific therapy, hospice comes in. In this state, doctors believe that the patient’s life expectancy is six months or less. As in a palliative treatment, the primary goal is comfort and well-being.

Hospice care usually forgoes aggressive disease treatment, such as chemotherapy for cancer patients. By avoiding medications that may lower quality of life, people in hospice can focus on getting the most out of the time they have left. Hospice care often allows elderly people and their families to concentrate on the practical and deeply emotional issues that come with a terminal disease. When patients undergo fewer treatments, they usually can receive hospice care in the comfort of their homes.

Working to provide greater comfort, life quality, and peace of mind

At Vitae Care, we are dedicated to providing the most outstanding in-home health care services possible. From delivering care to patients enrolled in hospice programs to working with palliative specialists, we understand the need for high-quality care to improve the comfort and happiness of all patients. We offer many different services for hospice and palliative patients, from basic yet essential companionship to in-home care, giving friends and family greater peace of mind.

We’ll do our part to make the lives of those in our care more enjoyable and less stressful. Our services help people stay in their homes longer, regardless of their disease or diagnosis. We believe home is the best place for people of all ages, and we’ll do whatever we can to help the elderly reach this goal.

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Elderly Companion Care Assists People Enjoy the Fall Season

 Social Media Team   Tuesday, October 31, 2017   0

The fall season is truly magnificent, and senior companionship can make the months more enjoyable and fulfilling.

The loveliest season, yet a challenge for the elderly

It is not hard to find someone who loves the fall season. The fresh air, brightly-colored trees, and playful fun of Halloween are just a few reasons why we love this time of year. Many elderly patients have fond memories of autumn. They remember dressing up for Halloween as a child, raking leaves in the yard at their first home, or picking apples at an orchard with their grandchildren.

Some may even have fond memories of hunting the woods and fields, taking in one last fishing trip before ice cover or just enjoying the outdoors that they treasured for years. However, it can be difficult for the elderly to get outside and enjoy the season. Limited mobility makes it difficult to walk down the street; taking a stroll in the woods to see the fall colors is virtually impossible. But with the coming winter, which will have many seniors indoors for months, it’s even more important that the elderly find time to enjoy the autumn season.

Helping the elderly enjoy the fall

Fortunately, elderly companion care can help people enjoy the autumn season in a safe, enjoyable manner. Getting out before the snow and ice come along helps the winter feel a little bit shorter.Beautiful autumn leaves lit by afternoon sunlight Outdoor activities with a companion can include simply going for a walk and getting some fresh air while enjoying the beautiful foliage. You can take a drive on country roads or enjoy a local park.

Many indoor activities are available, including carving a pumpkin, eating apple pie, or decorating the home for the upcoming holidays. On cold, windy, or rainy autumn days, these indoor activities help the elderly enjoy the season while avoiding the uncomfortable weather. Some of the assistance can also include necessary home preparations, such as preparing the house for winter, getting out warmer bedsheets, and putting away summer items. All of these services make the fall more enjoyable, helping the elderly get the most from this magnificent season.

Providing the right care for elderly patients; every month, every season

With a friendly, caring staff, Vitae Care provides a high level of support during every period of the year, including the beautiful autumn months. We understand the importance of activity and social interaction and will provide companionship that maintains a higher quality of life. While there are many specific services that we can provide during the fall, activities can essentially include anything the elderly would like to do, from enjoying a card game to taking a walk outside. We are genuinely passionate about providing friendly, supportive companionship, making the fall season more enjoyable for everyone.

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Respite Services Step in When You Cannot Be There, Giving You a Break and Providing Rest and Relief

 Social Media Team   Monday, October 23, 2017   0

In-home health-care services are ensuring continued high-quality care for your loved ones. Professional caregivers enable family caregivers to take breaks from the challenges of caregiving.

Relief for family caregivers has a name: Respite services

Providing care for an elderly parent or a family member recovering from surgery is labor thousands of individuals perform every day. These caregivers are balancing care responsibilities with their jobs, families, households, and much more. By delivering the best care, they allow loved ones in need of assistance to live independently in their homes.

It is a humble and brave act to care for elderly, disabled relatives, or others requiring care. Caregiving affects the health of more than just the loved one requiring care; the caregiver’s life can be affected because caregiving leaves almost no time left for caregivers to tend to their own well-being. Exhaustion, burnout, fatigue, and depression can create new problems as the care recipient continues to need assistance. Respite services can ease these problems.

Regular breaks from family caregiving ensure the well-being of both caregivers and care recipients

Many times, the challenges of caregiving are underestimated, and a break for a caregiver is often more than deserved. But who can you ask to cover and take over? What happens in an emergency when a family caregiver is unavailable because of an accident, illness, or simple schedule conflict? It is a good idea for family caregivers to prepare ahead of time for such eventualities by putting a plan B in place.

Caring companions relieve family caregivers

This is the moment when respite care comes in. Professional, caring service providers will make the first assessment, come to the care recipient’s home to get to know the environment, learn the family routines, and note medications and whatever else is needed. Services are tailored and come in different packages of care, offering differing hours of support, whether long-term or short-term. You can allow your loved ones to increase or maintain their independence even when you cannot be there. Continuity, a structured environment, and care with dignity and respect are our goals.

Respite care can be beneficial to both care recipients and caregivers

The care recipient has a new companion and can build a relationship with another person who offers different types of interactions. Caregivers should ask themselves, ‘‘What would make me happy right now?’’ Is it to take a break, get some rest, take care of other personal matters, or just go for a walk? The caregiver will have some precious time to reload and find new energy and perspective. In-home health care provides valuable services for elderly or disabled individuals who need some day-to-day supportive services but still want social stimulation, engagement, and the opportunity to take part in activities.

The six respite care services of Vitae Care offer resources for:

  • Older adults and senior citizens
  • Individuals with chronical illness or disease
  • People recovering from surgery or other hospital treatments
  • Women with difficult pregnancy
  • Mothers with newborn
  • Community of the disabled

A day has twenty-four hours, but sometimes it is not enough to accomplish everything daily caregiving requires. Hiring in-home health services may ease some of the burdens of providing care. Whether temporary, full-time, or part-time, a caring companion provides respectful, perceptive care. Vitae Care – we are there when you cannot be, discover our services and engage with us.

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Nonthreatening Approach in Dementia Care – a Gentle, Warm Way to Communicate with Patients

 Annette Pecinova   Saturday, October 21, 2017   0

Interacting or responding to a dementia patient with nonmedical care will have a beneficial effect. Respect plus a friendly, soft tone is what they need; appreciate the most, and you will get through them.

The role of a chaperone in caring for a patient with dementia

If you have family members slipping into dementia, their cognitive impairments and issues often make us forget about their unique personalities, strengths, and experiences in life. Families are finding it difficult to know how to respond to relatives who are beginning to exhibit dementia symptoms, and this is because the unpredictability of the disease brings discomfort or even fear to those who observe it. Japanese tee potSeeing family members confused, insecure, and disoriented brings the emotional pain. What we are looking for is the right way to communicate; this is essential to reaching them.

You may have read our previous blog titled “Therapeutic Lying in Dementia Care.” With this entry, we would like to continue the series and to elaborate on the nonthreatening approach in dementia care, which we see as a subtopic of therapeutic lying.

There is no cure yet, but we can endow patience, presence, care, and overall well-being to a patient

We would also like to highlight and recommend the importance of nonmedical care for dementia patients and geriatric patients. Nonmedical care is a nonthreatening approach in dementia care that resonates with and seems authentic to dementia patients by systemically focusing attention on the patient. Promoting health and well-being, creating smiles, and being present are the goals. Regardless of patients’ ability to remember, they possess high sensitivity and can open up when being addressed with a warm, soft tone, whereas a harsh, loud speaking voice could cause their immediate withdrawal.

Seven helpful tips and techniques

  • Always converse with your patients at eye level.
  • Be mindful of your mannerisms, stay at ease, be natural, and approach patients from the front when you begin to engage them so as not to startle them.
  • Keep your responses simple and use short statements. Use simple word choice.
  • Keep in mind that in general, older memories are more accessible to recall than are recent ones. Take a memory trip with patients; reminisce.
  • If they become aggravated or have discomfort, make sure to acknowledge their current feelings and redirect with a new topic or a change of scenery; for example, “Let’s look out the window.”
  • Stay at the moment with your patients. Do not become offended if they don’t remember you. They do remember you and understand you’re safe and what is happening is safe—it is dementia that does not recognize you.
  • Practice therapeutic lying. Dementia patients lack short-term memory but can recall a memory from thirty years ago and sometimes believe that is their current reality. Join them on their memory journey; do not disagree with them. Acknowledge them and make them feel what they see as the truth; encourage everyone in the room to join you. For example, when a patient claims, to be waiting for their dad to pick them up, you might ask the patient to have a snack or a glass of water before leaving because the trip may be a long one.

Therapeutic lying in dementia care is a hot topic and is surrounded by heated debate. It is an approach we at Vitae Care highly support and recommend, and we often lecture on it with our clients and at institutions. The step leading up to therapeutic lying is to have a nonthreatening approach when interacting with dementia patients and geriatric patients.

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Respect for Elders Is Simple, Convenient, and Rewarding

 Social Media Team   Tuesday, September 05, 2017   0

As a culture, are we doing enough? Showing respect for the elderly is easy and something everyone should do.

Are you showing enough respect for the elderly?

“Respect your elders.” It’s something we’ve heard since childhood, but is it something we practice in our everyday lives? We all agree that having respect for elders is important, but do we actually show this respect in a clear, direct, and intentional way? Having respect for the elderly creates better connections with people who have plenty of life experience and wisdom to share. In our hurried lives, it can be easy to disregard the direct benefits of having respect for seniors, but you can learn much about life by being respectful, gaining respect, and simply listening. You can learn about important morals, values, and principles that seniors have developed over decades. You can learn about how to keep a job for fifty years or how to maintain a great marriage for seventy years. By actively showing respect, you, and the rest of our culture, have much to gain.

Respecting the elderly is easy, convenient, and free

So how can you show this respect? In addition to saying “yes, sir” and “yes, ma’am,” what can you do that demonstrates the respect that seniors deserve? You probably won’t be surprised to learn that it’s simple, easy, and of course, it doesn’t cost a penny; it’s just a matter of behavior. You can start by considering how you address people. Many seniors grew up in a generation for which “Mr.,” “Mrs.,” and “Miss” were the proper ways to address people, and they may view being called “Bill” or “Mary” as disrespectful. Shake hands with people you meet for the first time, make full eye contact, and avoid using slang they may not understand. If they served in the US Armed Forces, thank them for their service and sacrifice. They may share information about the period and branch in which they served, but don’t press them for details unless they first express their wish to share them with you. In many cases, simply listening to their life stories is a sign of respect. Given time, seniors may share fascinating tales from their childhoods or adult lives, giving you a glimpse into American or foreign history that you can’t experience from a book. Throughout it all, if you simply be authentic, attentive, and in the moment, you’ll show (and receive) plenty of respect.

Vitae Care understands the importance of respecting elders

Respect for elders is important to the entire team at Vitae Care. Not only do we have a respectful attitude, we take the time to actively treat all elderly people, regardless of their mental or physical condition, with the utmost respect. This is essential for delivering high-quality home care that produces the best results for all people. We address people with respectful terms and always make sure that everyone gets the attention and care they deserve. Respect is an essential part of our home care services and is part of what makes our team so exceptional. Vitae Care—More Than Just Care.

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Sleep and Aging: Getting Enough Sleep Makes a Big Difference

 Social Media Team   Monday, September 04, 2017   0

Lack of sleep can lead to significant problems, but simple adjustments can create better sleep and superior health for the elderly.

The Harmful Effects of Reduced Sleep on the Elderly

All human beings require sleep, and the more we learn about the subject, the more it becomes clear that changes in sleep and aging are also connected. Like water, shelter, and food, the right amount of sleep can help people lead a healthy lifestyle, and not getting enough sleep can cause numerous problems. Lack of sleep can cause headaches, depression, forgetfulness, and impaired judgement. It’s even linked to irritability, making it a problem not just for people who lose sleep but also for their friends, coworkers, and loved ones. While we sleep, our bodies release hormones that repair skin and other tissues; apparently it’s not just a saying that sleep is a great medicine! Lack of sleep is also linked to obesity, diabetes, and even cancer. The more we learn about sleep, the more it becomes clear that it is a vital part of overall health and well-being.

Poor Sleep Among the Elderly

Unfortunately, seniors are likely to suffer from a lack of sleep. The National Institute on Aging looked at information from over nine thousand people aged sixty-five and older and found that a majority had at least one complaint about chronic sleep problems. The elderly commonly have difficulty falling asleep, as well as trouble with numerous waking throughout the night, awaking too early in the morning, and excessive daytime drowsiness. These sleep problems among the elderly can be caused by changes in lifestyles (such as losing a lifelong spouse or moving to a nursing home), medications, psychiatric disorders, and shifts in the body’s natural sleep-wake cycle.

Facilitating Better Sleep for the Elderly

So how can we create better sleeping conditions for seniors? Like everyone else, an elderly person should consider three basic factors that affect sleep: diet, activity, and environment. Evidence shows that eating certain foods can help with sleep. The classic “sleepy foods,” such as turkey and eggs, contain specific amino acids that induce sleep. Carbohydrates from breads and pastas can have a similar effect. Most experts recommend avoiding caffeine later in the day, so if someone suffers from poor sleep, drinking coffee or soda after lunch is usually not recommended. Certain activities close to bedtime, such as watching television or using a computer, can also stimulate the mind and body, leading to poor sleep. However, plenty of healthy exercise well before bedtime can be extremely beneficial and improve sleep levels. Finally, someone should have a quiet, peaceful place to rest. Help elderly patients eliminate light in the bedroom, and reduce excessive noise and distractions when they are sleeping.

At Vitae Care, we understand sleep and aging and know how to create a healthy lifestyle that increases the chances of a good night’s sleep. With a caring, knowledgeable staff, we can help with activities, make recommendations for a healthy diet, and organize a household to create a better environment for sleeping.

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