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How To Assist Your Loved One With Eating After A Stroke in Dallas, TX

Nutritional Help with Someone in Stroke Care

Patients requiring stroke care often have challenges eating meals. Sometimes it’s a chewing or swallowing issue, but other times, it’s a matter of getting food to the mouth. If the stroke has created memory loss, the stroke patient might not remember to eat.

Always refer to your doctor when you need assistance in choosing a meal plan for someone in stroke care. The following tips may be helpful, as well:

Encourage Wholesome Regular Meals

  • Schedule regular meals. The person in stroke care may eat more when they dine with a loved one at the table. He or she may look forward to a regular time to eat, so long as there is patience and ample time provided for eating.
  • Try different meal times. Does a late morning breakfast work better for the loved one in stroke care than an early morning meal?
  • Nutrient-dense foods are best. Rebuild your loved one’s strength by offering healthy, whole foods while in stroke care.
  • Everyone has preferences. If your loved one favors an item that’s easier to chew or swallow, and it has a high nutritional value, let them enjoy it often!

Softer Food is Usually Best

  • Pureed whole fruits or veggies: Pureed or blended whole foods are more palatable with additional spices or flavorings.
  • Yogurt is easy: Yogurt is an easy choice since it’s easy to swallow and sold in pre-portioned packages.
  • Oatmeal adds fiber: Oatmeal adds essential fiber, and is typically easier to chew and swallow than other grains.
  • Eggs are simple: Easy to eat and digest, eggs can provide protein along with other beneficial nutrients.
  • Gelatin or other soft desserts: Everyone enjoys sweets on occasion, but low-nutrition foods should only be offered on occasion.
  • Liquid meals: Ready-to-drink replacement meal shakes are high in protein and will be easiest for stroke care patients who are struggling to chew or swallow.
  • Avoid sticky foods: Peanut butter, rice, or anything sticky might create a choking hazard.
  • Buy special utensils: There are utensils that are cushioned or have specialized grips that can help someone in stroke care eat independently.

Seek Help as Needed

Seek outside assistance as needed when offering stroke care to your loved one. Contact your local Home Care Assistance office at (214) 216-6811 today to get more information about home care or meal assistance during this difficult time.

Protecting Seniors From Scams

Scammers like to prey upon older people in senior care because of their likelihood to be generous and kind. Money scams can happen by phone, email, the internet or even in person.

Older residents in senior care need to be cautious with their finances.  They’re often on fixed incomes with little savings. These money scams can damage their future lifestyle and wellbeing. If an aging adult suffers a financial loss, children or grandchildren may end up paying the consequences, too, as they wind up assisting with the losses.

What can be done to keep loved ones in senior care safe from scammers? First, be sure to talk with aging parents and educate them on common scams so they can be more discerning of tricksters. Scam artists are experienced and can fool people of any age. Remind seniors to fully investigate a person or company before releasing any money or information. Ask them to contact you for assistance if someone or something seems suspicious. Empower the older adults by telling them it’s okay to hang up on solicitors and discard emails without answering.

Scams have always been around but there are some more common ones that you will want to learn about:

  • Phony winnings – fraudulent lotteries, contests, and free prizes. The criminals are looking for account information. They typically ask for shipping or other fees to be paid in order to obtain credit card or bank account details.
  • Counterfeit charities – bogus relief from a recent disaster. There are non-profits that champion for support of these causes, but criminals try to capitalize, as well.
  • Impersonators – relatives like grandchildren, nieces, or nephews need money because they’re in jail or stuck in another country. Callers may say they’re desolate and ask for the purchase of a prepaid gift card or a wire transfer. Red flag!
  • Door-to-door sales – gimmicks like products, magazine subscriptions, or even roof repairs. This can be costly.

Scammers retrieve credit cards, money and personal info from the elderly in senior care in a multitude of ways, so it’s important to keep communication open with loved ones. Reassure them you’re looking out for them and remind them it’s okay to be skeptical of strangers.

A caregiver provides an additional level of help because they can watch for signs of mail or phone scams for the elderly person in senior care. Learn more about in-home care services by contacting Home Care Assistance of Dallas.

5 Benefits to Living with Caregiver Assistance

It’s a normal response for an independent adult to refuse the idea of a caregiver at first. When daily living tasks are finally too much of a challenge, the reality cannot be denied, and additional help must be brought into the home.

Although the initial response is hesitance, once an older adult understands the advantages of in-home senior care, chances are he or she will be open to the idea and enjoy the benefits of a compassionate caregiver. There’s additional safety with a caregiver in the home and social engagement reduce loneliness, too. Personal safety and conversation are both vital to a high quality of life.

Help a loved one benefit from a home caregiver. Consider these 5 lifestyle improvements with senior care:

  1. In-home caregivers respond to emergencies.

Unfortunately, medical emergencies are viable realities to aging. The risk of falls, strokes and heart attacks increase as people age, but an older adult with caregiver assistance is more likely to obtain life-saving medical support quickly. In-home caregivers can respond to emergencies at the moment and relay detailed information about the situation to emergency responders to improve potential outcomes.

  1. Caregivers eliminate isolation.

Human beings are meant to be social. Everyone needs quality conversation to be emotionally and physically healthy. It’s even more important to have daily communication as people age. An in-home caregiver expands an older adult’s social world with companionship and reduces loneliness. Loneliness and isolation have cognitive consequences and are connected to the risk of Alzheimer’s.

  1. Enjoy time with friends and family again.

Adults who don’t drive are challenged to be involved with family occasions because of their transportation problem. Alternately, a professional caregiver can drive, making family parties, appointments or occasions accessible to the adult once more.

  1. Caregivers can do the chores.

Those challenging chores that were so easy at one time may become impossible. Seniors may find it frustrating in older years, but caregivers can now do the household chores and errands! The home can still be tidy, and delicious homecooked meals can be prepared again with their help.

  1. Caregivers offer the opportunity to remain in the home.

Of course, the older adult probably wants to stay in the comfort of home! When an aging adult eventually needs senior care, he or she can remain at home with caregiving assistance instead of making a move to an assisted living community. It’s the ideal solution for older adults who aren’t receiving full-time medical care.

4 Benefits of Assisted Living

Once someone needing senior care learns about the many options of living with assistance, it may not feel so scary. There are numerous advantages that usually outweigh any concerns.

For example, senior care assistance provides an additional layer of safety, besides the social opportunities, and both are essential to your health and welfare, or for your loved one.

Please read the following 5 benefits if you are thinking about assisted living for a loved one:

  1. There is safety in living with assistance.

As adults age, there are new safety challenges – falls, strokes, heart problems and other health emergencies. If someone needing senior care has assistance at home or in an assisted living community, support comes more quickly. Assisted living communities have call buttons for help and a nurse on staff. The resident can receive help for an emergency more quickly, which can provide a better health outcome.

  1. Assisted living communities have social and educational activities.

Fun and healthy activities keep adults in senior care moving and gives them things to look forward to. Sometimes, a senior may be inspired to develop new hobbies or interests now that there is time and instruction for them to learn. Activity and social time are vital to cognitive health and isolation can create health consequences. It’s now understood to be linked to cognitive decline and possibly Alzheimer’s.

  1. Senior care assistance helps with daily needs.

Normal tasks of daily living that were simple and easy at one time may have become impossible. Cleaning, lawn cutting and maintenance, and meal preparation may be now impractical, but having someone else do the work can take stress off the resident.

  1. There’s a variety of assisted living options for those needing senior care.

As the population is aging, there are now a variety of assisted living options to look at and consider. Older adults can live in communities that closely match their values and interests, or they can have professional assistance in their home. Privacy concerns and hesitancy are eliminated once a person realizes he or she will still have a private apartment in the community. Common areas, like living rooms or dining rooms, will be shared areas, but residents have the freedom to be social or stay in their room during times they want more privacy.

Join the Home Care Assistance Team!

Mark your calendars!

Caregiver Job Fair
Tuesday, August 7, 2018 from 3:00pm to 6:00pm
5005 Addison Circle, Addison, TX  75001

Work for the Top Home Care Agency! Make a Difference while Enjoying the Perks of Being a Home Care Assistance Caregiver!

Home Care Assistance staff enjoy regular hours, stable work and minimal waiting periods between cases. We offer a variety of schedules from full-time, live-in to hourly care and can accommodate your preferred work schedule.  We have several clients that need great care from Dependable People ASAP!

Here are some of the other great benefits we offer:

  • Top home care wages.
  • After completing online training, you will receive a pay increase.
  • We are always there for you, day or night, 24/7.
  • Work as many hours as you need to meet your financial goals (40+)
  • We pay through direct deposit — your pay goes immediately into your account.
  • We offer to you to be part of a company that is different from the rest !!!
  • Our caregivers learn healthy meal preparation based on our Comfort Foods Cookbooks.
  • Webinars for CEUs such as a regular Healthy Longevity Webinar Series.

Apply today to help us change the way the world ages and take your first step toward a rewarding career. Apply at hcamatch.com – Select Dallas Location, or call Karen DeLavan at 214-363-3400.

Employer of Choice_2018

Secrets to Long Lives and Relationships of Seniors

When it comes to life vitality, have you stopped to consider how important your love and connections might be for you? What if your physician simply prescribed the following: “Immerse yourself in a community filled with people you love. Consistently strive for new friendships, while maintaining your old friendships. Never neglect time for family and others that love you.”

Recent studies say it may be that simple and straightforward! Loving connectivity with friends and family strongly correlates with longevity. Good relationships create meaningful lives. When older people commit to active lifestyles with other adults, they tend to easily make new friendships. A retired minister, Richard Watts, was quoted saying, “We never outlive our need or capacity to be useful,” and his words ring true as we continue to understand that relationships are essential to our physical and mental wellbeing. We are happier and live longer when we feel valued. We are social beings who enjoy physical and emotional benefits from interactions with people.

 

Loneliness Can’t Be Good

We’ve all heard that healthy lifestyle habits improve our health, but loneliness, on the other hand, has the potential to create depression and mental illness. Healthy interactions with others are imperative or our bodies will deteriorate. Loneliness can manifest inflammation, which makes us feel sick. Unfortunately, once this happens, the inflammation then provides a reason to socially withdrawal. Loneliness compromises health by making us feel ill, which results in further isolation from our friends and community.

 

Alternately, quality relationships can build our immunity. They can help us contract fewer colds, flu and chronic illness. High blood pressure and cardiovascular disease can be reduced, too. It’s obvious that personal connections are the antidote to many illnesses. In fact, whether we are a loving caregiver or the recipient of loving care, our bodies can benefit. In either case, loving relationships reduce stress and inflammation.

 

Social Activity and Wellbeing

Feelings of well-being increase when we surround ourselves by others, and we even take better care of ourselves, too. When we have events to look forward to on the calendar, it creates an optimistic future outlook and when we surround ourselves with active friends, we are that much more active, as well. We create healthier habits and lifestyle changes when we’re connected with other active people. It also promotes a sense of life purpose which brings a positive and bright outlook that leads to better brain health.

 

The Brain and Social Interaction

Quality relationships are good for us, and studies show that we reap benefits from social interaction. Conversing with other people can keep us sharp and thinking clearly. We tend to use additional brain power when we have conversations with others. Conversations challenge us to remember past details and learn new things, too.

 

 

How to Decrease the Risk of Heart Disease of Seniors

Since healthy lifestyles typically correlate with a healthy heart, it’s great knowing that even seemingly small lifestyle changes may improve your heart health. Take the time to learn how to decrease your risk of heart disease.

Sadly, up to 80% of the 17,000,000 annual deaths from heart disease worldwide could be prevented. Heart disease is often a silent killer, sneaking up slowly until suddenly, the heart damage becomes obvious.

You might be planning out your future, but a heart attack or heart disease could change everything. However, if you take time to learn about heart disease and its causes, you’ll become more aware of the daily choices you’re making. You don’t have to waste time worrying about the future if you actively work towards reducing the risk of heart disease and heart attack by making choices and changes to improve your health.

 

Causes of Heart Disease

There’s nothing newly discovered about heart disease. Basically, atherosclerosis is still the main enemy. A buildup of plaque in the lining of arteries over time hardens and narrows the arteries. The blood flow to vital organs and tissues becomes reduced, and finally, heart and blood vessels are hopelessly damaged.

Learn the 3 lifestyle habits most responsible for atherosclerosis:

  • Poor diet
  • Lack of exercise
  • Smoking

These above-mentioned poor lifestyle choices, mixed with heavy doses of stress, can be a recipe for heart disease. Still, isn’t it good to know that risk factors like age and genetics may not be within your power to change, but daily lifestyle choices certainly are? Each person has the power to make healthy changes when they are ready.

Takeaway tip: Discover the causes of heart disease. Know the lifestyle choices that could promote heart problems. This way, you can make your own plan to make changes for the better.

 

How to Prevent Heart Problems

Eat well

Our human bodies crave fresh, nutritious whole foods. When we eat well, our bodies can thrive and have optimal health with peak performance abilities. On the other hand, fast foods, processed foods, and poor eating habits can clog arteries with plaque, create high blood pressure, and raise cholesterol levels beyond healthy limits. Consume healthy fats, and smaller amounts of salt and sugar instead, and your heart health is likely to improve.

Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) eating plan and the Mediterranean Diet are the most recommended plans for eating towards heart health. They’re each slightly different, but their foundations are similar.

Best diets for heart health include:

  • Vegetables, including greens, broccoli, cabbage and carrots
  • Colorful fruits, e.g. apples, berries, melons and oranges and citrus fruits
  • Whole grains
  • Quality proteins
  • Coldwater fish
  • Fresh eggs
  • Healthy fats, from seeds, nuts, and avocados

Whole nutrient-rich food helps keep you feel satiated longer, but don’t give in to processed foods or drinks heavy in salt, sugar, and alcohol or it will undo your good work.

Takeaway Tip: Decide on just one healthy addition to your diet this week. At the same time, eliminate one processed food. Yes, it definitely is possible achieving two changes to better health within a week! Consider fresh fruit in the morning instead of a sugary blueberry muffin, for example.

 

Get More Exercise

Increasing physical activity can improve your health. Get up and move around often throughout the day because activity helps to reduce the four most common risk factors for heart disease.

Getting more exercise:

  • may decrease high cholesterol
  • decreases high blood pressure
  • helps with weight loss
  • lowers the likelihood of type 2 diabetes

You’ll probably want to get more exercise after reading the above list. Try for 180 minutes per week, or a minimum of 20 minutes per day. Health experts recommend keeping your heartbeat elevated for at least 10 minutes at a time. Walking is a great choice, but you might add swimming, dancing, bicycling or weight lifting for exercise instead. It’s all good for you!

Takeaway Tip: Increase your activity by at least 5 minutes each day. Do something simple, like turning on music and dancing in the privacy of your home! Small things do add up, too, so park a little further away from the store so you have to walk further to get inside!

 

Smoking

Smoking isn’t an option. Just stop! Nicotine reduces the size of blood vessels, contributing to damage by carbon monoxide. It can destroy the insides of your heart vessels and it creates a great risk of heart disease.  Sure, it can be challenging to break this habit, but you just need to remember it’s a lifestyle choice,  and it’s within your control. It may be hard to quit… but it’s achievable and people do it all the time. Ask your doctor about local cessation programs or types of products that might help you quit.

Takeaway Tip: Keep your reasons to quit smoking top of mind by listing them on a post-it note and putting it where you’ll see it often. Do you want to generally feel better, be able to do more, or play games with your grandkids? Decide what motivates you!

 

Stress

High inflammation in the body happens after suffering prolonged stress, but these levels can be reduced and managed before arteries are severely damaged. Highly emotional circumstances often precede heart attacks, so don’t let yourself get too far out of control! Do you find yourself drinking too much alcohol, smoking, and suppressing emotions as ways to reduce stress? You might want to find some alternate strategies for relieving stress instead.

How about these options:

  • Talk to a mental health provider for different strategies
  • Meditate
  • Increase daily physical activity
  • Release hurts and frustrations
  • Enjoy your relationships with full intention

Remember that our personal responses to life’s challenges are within our control!

Takeaway Tip:  Are you ready to make some change? How about this one new daily habit? Try writing five items you’re grateful for in the morning or learn deep breathing techniques.

 

Try to know and understand all that you can in order to prevent heart disease. Understand your personal risk factors so you are able to make positive lifestyle changes. Stay focused and be willing to change. Consider heart disease risks that could affect you, then take simple steps, because even small healthy habits will make a difference!