iCaria Health

iCaria Health iCaria is a health application that let's you track the health and wellness of your loved ones. Avai

📩  INSPIRING STORIES ABOUT SENIORS AND THEIR CAREGIVERSOur new rubric with inspiring seniors stories ❤️Home Care Assista...
03/12/2021

📩 INSPIRING STORIES ABOUT SENIORS AND THEIR CAREGIVERS

Our new rubric with inspiring seniors stories ❤️
Home Care Assistance (https://homecareassistance.com/) has instilled a new sense of meaning and purpose into the lives of thousands of seniors. The clients they are so privileged to serve are now leading their best lives, everyday.

⭐ Senior Story #2: Bob H., Photographer Extraordinaire ⭐

"Home Care Assistance has served Bob and Annie H. since May 2015. Bob started out as a photographer in the Air Force and from there became a professional photographer for the remainder of his career. Though he and his wife Annie have traveled extensively, one of their favorite places to go is their cabin in the mountains of southern Colorado.

From the beginning, one of Bob’s favorite caregivers was Michael. Because of Bob’s Parkinson’s disease, holding a camera or even getting out of the house for more than a short outing has now become very difficult. Last October, Annie asked if his caregiver Michael would be able to take them to their cabin for a week so they could enjoy the mountains and watch the changing of the Aspen leaves. Michael was more than happy to accompany Annie and Bob to their cabin, and they all had a very enjoyable trip.

Bob and Annie still talk about how much fun they had and how much they appreciated Michael’s help. In fact, they enjoyed it so much that they asked Michael to take them back to their cabin for another week.

There is no way they would have been able to visit their cabin without our help. We feel very fortunate to know we’ve been able to make a difference in Annie and Bob’s life by taking them to one of their favorite places in the world!"

🎨  ART THERAPY FOR SENIORS (BENEFITS AND PROPER STEPS)Art therapy for the elderly has been the subject of much interest ...
03/09/2021

🎨 ART THERAPY FOR SENIORS (BENEFITS AND PROPER STEPS)

Art therapy for the elderly has been the subject of much interest in recent years. This is because of its apparent effect on the mental well-being of older adults, especially those with dementia.

The goal of art therapy is to stimulate the body and mind alike through, as the name implies, artistic methods. It’s commonly used for seniors who have trauma, or illnesses such as Alzheimer’s. The use of art allows for an alternative method of communication for the elderly, especially when verbal speech is limited. Art is a more visual and sensory way for seniors to express themselves, and can help them lower stress, combat depression, feel a higher sense of well-being, and connect with memories they may otherwise have forgotten.

⭐️ Some positive effects of art therapy may include:
* Reducing stress, confusion, and lowering the risk of depression;
* Coping with traumatic memories through artistic expression;
* Increasing cognitive function, and triggering previously forgotten memories;
* A decrease in frailty and an increase in physical ability (creating art helps promote coordination, also decreases pain from diseases such as Arthritis)
* Promoting a sense of accomplishment for seniors by creating something themselves;
* Helping a senior learn to effectively use their hands when dealing with pain, through art projects such as knitting, painting, and drawing;
* Promoting communication: elderly persons who have difficulty expressing themselves through verbal or written language may find art useful for connecting with loved ones, helping to reduce feelings of isolation and loneliness;
* Certain types of art may remind the elderly of their younger years;
* Restoring many mental and physical functions, while providing a general sense of well-being.

👉 The Proper Steps 👈
If you think art therapy may be helpful for your senior loved one, consider the following steps for implementing it into your elderly care plan. Discuss these with a senior caregiver to get the most out of the process:
* Do not use materials that are toxic if ingested;
* Start the senior off with something easy, such as drawing a picture with markers;
* Talk to them throughout the process, encouraging them to continue, and complimenting their work;
* Use materials that are vividly coloured;
* Whether drawing, painting, or otherwise, ask them to use something from their youth as their subject, such as a memory of a childhood home;
* Once the piece is complete, place it somewhere they can see it, ensuring the benefit of self-satisfaction with their accomplishment.

Of course, art therapy is not only for seniors. However, it is especially helpful for older people living with diseases like dementia, or physical limitations such as arthritis. Seniors living alone are particularly vulnerable to depression brought on by solitude and a loss of independence, and while art therapy is a good remedy, the best way to combat elderly depression is through companionship.

📩  INSPIRING STORIES ABOUT SENIORS AND THEIR CAREGIVERS Our new rubric with inspiring seniors stories ❤️Home Care Assist...
03/05/2021

📩 INSPIRING STORIES ABOUT SENIORS AND THEIR CAREGIVERS

Our new rubric with inspiring seniors stories ❤️

Home Care Assistance (https://homecareassistance.com/) has instilled a new sense of meaning and purpose into the lives of thousands of seniors. The clients they are so privileged to serve are now leading their best lives, everyday.

We want to share with you a few stories about their clients that illustrate how caregivers and care teams are truly enriching seniors lives.

⭐ Senior Story #1: Frank, Avid Traveler and Heroic WW II Veteran⭐

" Even at the “young” age of 98, Frank was enjoying a youthful lifestyle and deeply thriving. This was due largely in part to the heartfelt and dedicated care our caregiver, Merab, was able to provide him. Merab, who’s originally from the country of Georgia, is a caregiver like no other.

Merab began working with Frank full-time, seven days a week, and has continued to work with him nearly every day since starting. Through his encouragement of healthy foods, physical exercise and social activity, Merab fosters our Balanced Care Method in everything he does and keeps Frank living a purposeful and active life.

Merab and Frank have a very special relationship. When you see them together it goes without saying what a warm place Merab has earned in Frank’s heart. Merab is not only a caregiver to Frank, but also an advocate, best friend, and a part of his family.

All of us at Home Care Assistance look forward to the bi-weekly photos and home videos Merab captures and shares with us. We’ve seen dozens of amazing videos of Frank and Merab smiling while traveling all around Wisconsin, and across the United States. Some of the highlights of Frank’s adventures with Merab include annual trips to Florida to enjoy the sun’s vitamin D and the company of Frank’s son, as well as leisurely trips to the shorelines of Door County, along with many other destinations.

Whether the two are at a wedding, fair or around his hometown of Milwaukee, we all enjoy seeing Frank’s genuine smile in the moments Merab captures on camera. They never miss a chance to explore different cultures, music festivals, natural museums and other landmarks around the U.S. Even with Frank’s limited mobility, Merab is constantly seeking more places to venture together.

Merab’s biggest priority is to keep Frank enjoying all the beautiful bounties life has to offer, while also keeping him mentally and physically engaged in life. One of Merab’s proudest moments was when he had the privilege of accompanying Frank to the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight in 2015 to honor Frank’s military service in WWII. Even though Merab and Frank had recently returned from an annual trip to Florida, Merab decided he was up for yet another cross-country trip with Frank to commemorate his service in the war. Merab woke up with Frank at 3am to make a 7am flight from Milwaukee to Washington D.C. where the pair saw many iconic sights including the World War II Memorial. On their return flight home, Frank was greeted with hand-written letters of appreciation as well as cheers from the Honor Flight homecoming event crowd! Frank had always wanted to take part in the Honor Flight, and because of Merab’s dedication and empathy, Frank was able to be honored for his heroic and noble service to our country with his favorite supporter by his side.

Seeing the positive influence Merab continues to make in Frank’s life makes us all at Home Care Assistance truly appreciate the service and care we get to provide to older adults. Merab is the true embodiment of what Home Care Assistance stands for and we are so proud and excited to see what else is in store for this amazing pair! "

🐱🐶 PET THERAPY DOES WONDERS FOR SENIORSPet therapy is a general term that refers to the use of animals for treatment and...
03/02/2021

🐱🐶 PET THERAPY DOES WONDERS FOR SENIORS

Pet therapy is a general term that refers to the use of animals for treatment and companionship.

Having animals around can benefit seniors in a whole host of ways. For instance, walking a dog is obviously a great fun exercise. Feeding, brushing, and caring for a pet can also help a senior feel needed and purposeful. The total acceptance and unconditional love that animals give can go a long way toward lowering people's stress levels and help shift their focus away from their own problems and needs.

Consider patients suffering from dementia. Research has found that animals can reduce agitation and stress in people with this condition. A study in the Western Journal of Nursing Research concluded that having a specially trained dog living in an Alzheimer's care unit resulted in a significant drop in behavioral issues among facility residents. A separate study in the same journal found that Alzheimer's patients living in nursing homes got more nutrition and gained more weight when fish aquariums were set up in the facility for residents to look at during meal times.

⭐️ Animal-assisted therapy benefits for seniors can also include:
- Increased self-esteem
- Reduced feelings of anxiety and isolation
- Decreased blood pressure and heart rate
- Improved motor skills
- Increased social interaction
- Stimulated memory as seniors reminisce about pets they had
- Quicker recovery time from injuries
- Higher levels of physical activity

Here is a last winter quote of the day for our rubric "Positive Thoughts for Those Difficult Days".👇“If you want others ...
02/24/2021

Here is a last winter quote of the day for our rubric "Positive Thoughts for Those Difficult Days".
👇
“If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.”
— Dalai Lama, the highest spiritual leader of Tibet

💉 COVID-19 vaccines and safety: what the research saysIt is clear that coronavirus vaccines are safe and effective, but ...
02/19/2021

💉 COVID-19 vaccines and safety: what the research says

It is clear that coronavirus vaccines are safe and effective, but as more are rolled out, researchers are learning about the extent and nature of side effects.
As people around the world receive COVID-19 vaccines, reports of temporary side effects such as headaches and fevers are rolling in. Much of this was expected — clinical-trial data for the vaccines authorized so far suggested as much. But now that millions of people are vaccinated, compared with the thousands enrolled in early studies, reports of some rare, allergic reactions are surfacing, and questions are arising about whether any deaths are linked to the shots.

There is no question that the current vaccines are effective and safe. The risk of severe reaction to a COVID-19 jab, say researchers, is outweighed by the protection it offers against the deadly coronavirus. Nature looks at what scientists are learning about the frequency and nature of side effects as huge numbers of people report their reactions to physicians and through safety-monitoring systems, such as smartphone apps.

How many people experience common side effects from COVID-19 vaccines?
For the two available messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines — one made by Moderna at Cambridge, Massachusetts, and the other developed through a collaboration between Pfizer in New York City and BioNTech in Mainz, Germany — a significant portion of people experience non-serious reactions, such as injection-site pain, headache and fatigue. These vaccines deliver bits of RNA that code for coronavirus proteins, which the body mounts a response against.

According to data from the US Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), about 372 out of every million administered doses of the mRNA vaccines lead to a non-serious reaction report. This number is lower than would be expected from clinical-trial data, which indicated that at least 80% of people would experience injection-site pain. Researchers running trials monitor patients closely and record every reaction. VAERS, meanwhile, relies on health-care workers and vaccinated individuals to self-report side effects.

So far, reactions to the mRNA vaccines are similar. These vaccines are administered in a two-dose regimen: the first shot triggers an immune reaction, and the second is a ‘booster’ that strengthens the body’s ability to fight the coronavirus. For the Pfizer–BioNTech vaccine, which has been in use longer than the Moderna vaccine and therefore has generated more data, side effects increase with the second dose (see ‘Tracking side effects’)
Check the full review here https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-021-00290-x

We want to remind that older people have been prioritized to receive COVID-19 vaccines in many areas of the world.
Therefore, it is very important to study the possible side effects and contraindications with your elderly relatives before vaccination.

Take care of yourself and your loved ones! ❤️

🎉 HAPPY FAMILY DAY! We sometimes forget to show affection for those that really matter in our life. Let those that love ...
02/15/2021

🎉 HAPPY FAMILY DAY!

We sometimes forget to show affection for those that really matter in our life. Let those that love you know that you are grateful for their love. Tell your parents that you love them. Family is everything! They will have your back when nobody else does.

May you spend this Family day laughing and basking in happiness ❤️

❤️  Happy Valentine’s Day! ❤️May this Valentine’s Day be filled with love, understanding, and contentment as you journey...
02/14/2021

❤️ Happy Valentine’s Day! ❤️

May this Valentine’s Day be filled with love, understanding, and contentment as you journey through life with those you hold dear.

📣  8 TIPS FOR TALKING TO YOUR PARENT’S DOCTOR (PART 2)There is PART 2 of some tips and tricks that family caregivers can...
02/11/2021

📣 8 TIPS FOR TALKING TO YOUR PARENT’S DOCTOR (PART 2)

There is PART 2 of some tips and tricks that family caregivers can use to ensure doctors are well-informed while their loved ones’ dignity remains intact. Start with the following strategies, but keep in mind that effective tactics will vary depending on a senior’s personality and medical concerns.

⭐️ Send Documentation

Another option for communicating with the doctor is to write and send them a letter or email ahead of the appointment noting your concerns. This way, the doctor is prepared with the facts when you see them. They can then mention these issues in a tactful way, pursue additional testing, or suggest a referral to a specialist without revealing you as the inside source of information or being misled by your loved one’s version of things.

⭐️ Keep a Diary of Observations

Consider attaching the notes that you’ve kept over a week or two to your letter that indicates the dates and times of new or worsening behaviors or health issues that concern you. Again, this will enable you to share detailed information with the doctor without blatantly contradicting or embarrassing your loved one during the appointment.

⭐️ Bring a Medication List

Make a complete list of every prescription, over-the-counter medication, herbal supplement and vitamin your loved one takes, including dosages. Instead of composing a list, some caregivers simply put all their loved one’s pill bottles in a bag and bring them to the appointment. This complete account helps the doctor spot drug interactions, troubleshoot adverse side effects and prevent overmedication.

⭐️ Keep Your Parent Involved

Medical professionals are notoriously busy, but during the visit, make sure the doctor interacts with your loved one. Some physicians will look over their notes and then speak directly to the family caregivers, since it’s faster and easier to get straight answers to questions. However, you are there to support your loved one, take notes and contribute to the improvement of their care plan.

Taking over the appointment will only build resentment and cause your loved one to shut down further. Yes, in some cases where an elder is no longer capable of communicating with the physician, their caregiver must take a more active role in appointments. Nevertheless, a senior still deserves the dignity of being treated as an adult patient and participating in their own care as much as possible, no matter how confusing or childish their behavior may sometimes be.

📣  8 TIPS FOR TALKING TO YOUR PARENT’S DOCTOR (PART 1) A frequent problem expressed among family caregivers is that thei...
02/09/2021

📣 8 TIPS FOR TALKING TO YOUR PARENT’S DOCTOR (PART 1)

A frequent problem expressed among family caregivers is that their aging loved ones aren’t honest with their doctors. At home, they may gripe about intense pain, struggle to complete activities of daily living independently, or exhibit memory problems that lead to unfair accusations, but the moment they sit down in a doctor’s office, they say they are doing well!

Fortunately, there are some tips and tricks that family caregivers can use to ensure doctors are well-informed while their loved ones’ dignity remains intact. Start with the following strategies, but keep in mind that effective tactics will vary depending on a senior’s personality and medical concerns.

⭐ Get Proper Authorizations
Keep in mind that few doctors will talk to you without an appointment, and you’ll need the proper HIPAA authorization with a valid medical power of attorney (POA) document to have a comprehensive discussion about a loved one’s condition and medical care. Have these three legal documents prepared and provide copies to all physicians involved in your parent’s care.

⭐ Talk with Your Loved One Ahead of Time
Explain that doctors these days respect and appreciate an educated patient. Our elders grew up in an age when doctors were put on pedestals and there was little meaningful patient-physician interaction. Reminding them that they have some power during these appointments may encourage them to be more honest and forthcoming.

⭐ Identify Your Role as an Advocate
Remind your loved one that you are on their side and that their safety and health are your number one priority. Try to establish trust. This isn’t always possible, though, since some elders become suspicious of everyone’s motives. All you can do is try.

⭐ Ask to Talk to the Doctor One on One Beforehand
Alert them to your loved one’s impressive acting abilities and discuss any symptoms and problematic behaviors you have observed at home. This could be an in-person conversation or a telephone call.

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