Northern Virginia Senior Home Care Blog

Helping Seniors with a High Protein Diet

Did you know that a diet high in protein is incredibly important for seniors? Protein is particularly important right before medical procedures or surgery and can help the healing time during an acute illness when the body doesn’t digest protein as easily. Seniors especially need high-protein diets to maintain good bone density and muscle mass! Read on…

Determining When Your Senior Loved One Should Stop Driving

Aging alone should not mean that a person must stop driving, but if there are safety concerns due to health or slower reflexes, it can become an issue. It’s important to have a good reaction time for any driver, no matter how old they are. So, when should you have the conversation about deciding the time to stop driving has come? Here are a few tips to help you know.

Tips for Improving Your Heart Health

Your heart is where your life is! A healthy heart beats between 60-90 beats per minute and that may slow down a little as we age. That means your heart could eat more than 140,000 times each day! It’s crazy to think that the organ we depend on for the very breath of life is the one we so often fail to take the best care of. In this article, we will give you a few tips to take care of your heart and live the longest, healthiest life possible!

Losing Caregiver Guilt and Living at Peace

If you are feeling a bit guilty when it comes to taking care of your older loved ones, you are not alone. Negative emotions are quite common as you walk the caregiving process, and it’s important to know what to do with those emotions as they come up. There are steps you can take to mitigate your unwarranted feelings of guilt.

How to Reminisce and Remember with Seniors with Dementia

Therapy that involves sharing long-term memories is a very popular and effective treatment for those with Alzheimer’s. It helps them focus on the positive things that have happened in their lives, helps them feel connected, and generally boosts their sense of joy, belonging, and pride. Try these 3 reminiscing techniques with your senior loved one who struggles with dementia or early stages of Alzheimer’s:

Keeping Your Loved Ones Safe from Elder Fraud

These days it seems that robocalls are just a part of daily life that we have to contend with. While it might seem easy to most people as to which calls and emails are obvious scams, it’s not always so easy for seniors. This is precisely why scammers prey on older adults more than anyone else! Here are some common scams and how to avoid falling victim to them.

Tips for Communicating with Someone Who Has Alzheimer’s

A diagnosis of Alzheimer’s can be frightening to everyone. Not only does it create memory loss, but also makes any communication at all very difficult as the disease progresses. If you have a loved one with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, we know this can be a scary time, so we put together some tips to help you continue to have effective communication with your family member, as well as everyone involved.

Helping Senior Loved Ones Celebrate New Year’s Eve

Seniors often have a difficult time during the holiday season, but especially when it comes to New Year’s Eve. There are always fun activities and parties as we bring in the new year, and your senior loved ones may feel a bit down when they can’t party as the once did. The good news? There are lots of ideas to ring in the new year with older adults. Check out our tips for a fun and happy New Year’s Eve party!

Helping Seniors Avoid Holiday Depression

“Holiday blues” among seniors is very real and should be handled carefully. Older adults often have emotional, mental, and physical needs not taken into account during the holidays, and it can be a difficult time for them. While there are several things that can influence their confusion, or even depression during the holidays, here are a few that you might want to keep an eye out for.

Life-Enriching Activities for Seniors with Dementia or Alzheimer’s

It can be a bit more challenging to help a patient with Alzheimer’s continue to enjoy things they once enjoyed before this life-altering diagnosis. After all, we all need a sense of community and fellowship with friends in order to maintain a sense of well-being and peace. While it is more difficult to do the same things, it’s not impossible. Here are a few ideas to keep your senior with Alzheimer’s thriving.

How to Prepare Moving Aging Parents into Your Home

It can be a tough decision to move an aging parent into your home, but once the decision is made, there are some things you can do to make the process as easy as possible. Here are some tips to help you plan for the big move.

Managing the Symptoms of Sundowning

Alzheimer’s Disease presents many challenges, not the least of which is something called sundowning—a period in the late day/early evening when agitation or irritability can set in for no apparent reason. Confusion tends to worsen as the sun goes down, hence the name. So, what causes it and how can you manage it?

Causes for Concern During the Holidays with Seniors

The holidays can be a lot of fun but can also be a bit stressful, especially on seniors. They don’t want to feel like they are a burden to anyone, yet they still want to enjoy all the festivities of family and friends. If you notice some of the following signs in your senior loved one, it may be time to ask about an in-home caregiver.

Helping Senior Loved Ones Deal with Depression

One of the most difficult parts of caring for senior loved ones is knowing how to handle the depression that often befalls them. There is no doubt that seniors are more at risk for developing depression, and it’s important that family members and caregivers understand the warning signs and what to do about them.

Taking Care of Yourself as a Caregiver for Others

Being a caregiver to a family member has an impact on the other relationships in your life, making the personal priorities fall to the back burner. While we may tell ourselves, this type of caregiving is only temporary, it often turns into much longer months or even years. You must take care of yourself while you take care of a family member, and that self-care includes nurturing the most important relationships in your life. Here are a few tips…

How to Know When to Hire an In-Home Caregiver

Did you know that nearly half of all senior adults over the age of 65 need some type of assistance daily? It’s true. As many as 70% of seniors will need a caregiver at some point as they continue to age. One of the biggest challenges with caregiving is how to know when it’s time to hire in-home care. Here are some signs that can help you determine if the time is right.

How to Handle Common Dementia Behaviors

Dementia falls under the umbrella of Alzheimer’s disease and refers to the cognitive decline, memory loss, and several other behaviors that impact the ability to have normal function and routine. In advanced stages, it can also pose a safety risk, such as wandering off or getting lost. Here are a few of the behaviors commonly associated with the onset of dementia:

How Siblings Can Share the Load of Caregiving

Having an ailing parent is always tough, but things can be even more challenging when there are multiple siblings involved wondering who does what in the care plan. If you are a caretaker for your mom or dad and you have siblings who also want to help, this article will help you!

Why Routines are Important for Seniors with Chronic Illness

It’s tough for anyone living with a chronic disease, but it seems even more challenging when it’s a senior loved one who has worked hard to raise a family and are now faced with sickness. If you are a caregiver for an older adult in your life, you already know how important it is to maintain a routine and a predictable order. This is especially true for cognitive decline such as dementia and Alzheimer’s. Learn more…

Helping Aging Parents Live Their Best Life

We all want to live long and healthy lives! As adults, we desire to do all we can to help our parents age well and gracefully. This may be going along beautifully until a health crisis or some other stressful event happens. What to do next? How do we give our aging parents the control they need to continue to feel independent while still stepping into the role of helper or caregiver? Read on.

Playing Bingo Has Great Benefits for the Elderly

Did you know that Bingo has been recognized not only as a great pastime for the elderly, but also a great way to sharpen memory and thinking skills? It’s true! There are lots of positive benefits to playing Bingo on a regular basis—let’s look at a few!

How to Sit Less and Move More

Did you know that sitting too much can also be a problem? While sitting too much is not a good habit to fall into, neither does it mean that you need to stand for hours on end. The point is not to stand more, but to sit less. So, the bottom line is gentle activity or even slow movement is better than sitting still for extended periods of time. Learn more…

Tips for Managing Stress as a Caregiver

The life expectancy continues climbing in this country, and with that comes even more caregiving responsibilities of adult children of elderly parents. For a few, this means just providing care and support after an illness or surgery. But for many other family caregivers, taking on the task of caregiver will last 5 years or more. So, how do we manage the stress that comes with caring for those we love most? Read on…

How to Communicate Effectively with Aging Parents Who are Stubborn

Anyone who has become a caretaker for aging parents knows that as they age, they can become stubborn. Whether it’s dementia setting in, medications, or just a loss of control, seniors can become obstinate as they age and that can present its own special set of challenges for those doing the caretaking. So, how do you deal with stubborn parents? Read on…

Exercises to Keep Your Mind Active and Memory Sharp

Check out the following ideas and exercises you can easily do with your senior loved one as well as yourself, to keep the mind sharp and help prevent memory loss. Remember, the goal is to stay mentally stimulated.

Anxiety in Seniors

All of us get anxious from time to time, no matter how old we are. But for seniors, anxiety can be harder to cope with as they age. If you have an older loved one who is struggling to get through normal daily tasks due to anxiety, it’s time to speak to a doctor and get a plan to help ease the symptoms before it becomes hard to manage.

Exercises for Improving Balance in Seniors

As seniors grow older, you may notice increasing problems with balance. This increases the risk of falling, which can have terrible consequences. The good news? There are many exercises that are simple and easy and can be done right from home with no special equipment! Here are a few exercises that will increase balance and mobility in your senior loved one.

Tips for Home Recovery After Surgery

Recovering from any kind of surgery can be a challenge, but if your friends and family who could help you don’t live close by, you may be having to recover on your own. Here are some tips to help make that recovery process easier, whether you are the patient, or you have a senior loved one who is the one recovering. The main goal, of course, is to get back to normal as quickly as possible!

Preparing Aging Parents for Downsizing

Moving is stressful when everything goes right! Moving aging parents from the home they have known for years can come with many extra challenges. For seniors who have been in their house for years and even raised children and grandchildren there, this process requires a special touch with lots of care. Use this checklist to help make downsizing easier on both you and your parents when it comes time to move.

In-Home Care Services vs. Nursing Home Care

If an elderly loved one in your life needs advanced care, you may be wondering about the differences between in-home care services and nursing home care. In this article we’ll look at these two options and help you determine which care plan is right for your loved one.

Seniors and Insomnia

All adults need 7-9 hours of sleep, no matter our age. Older adults often find themselves feeling frustrated when they can’t get to sleep or sleep through the night. It can happen for a variety of reasons, not the least of which could be medications, pain, or even depression. Learn some of the causes and how to get better sleep.

Tips for Healthy Aging

It’s a lost art to embrace the aging process with grace and poise. The truth is, we go through many difficult changes as we grow older, and many of us see a decline in our health as we age, simply because we don’t know how to deal with all the changes of aging in a healthy way. Whether it’s retirement, loss of loved ones, grown kids leaving for college, or even declining health, the changes that come with aging can be scary. We want to help! Read on….

Quality of Life for Dementia Patients

It’s often thought that those diagnosed with dementia or Alzheimer’s will steadily lose their quality of life. While cognitive decline is certainly part of the process, there are things you can do as a caregiver to maintain as much quality of life as possible. Regardless of the stage of their disease, they need to be stimulated every day, both in mind and body!

How to Plan for Aging in Place

“Aging in place” is a term that has become more and more frequent these days. As people age, most prefer to do it in the comfort of their own home and familiar surroundings. Thankfully, most people will be able to do just that if they desire, although it takes a little advanced planning. Here are some tips to plan ahead for aging in place.

Tips for Managing Caregiver Stress

If you are a caregiver for a senior loved one, you know how tough it can be, both mentally and physically. You need to expect some adjustments and know that even if it’s hard to manage the stress, there are ways to do it that will help you. We’ve put together several coping skills so you can deal with the tough times that always come from being a caregiver around the clock.

3 Ways to Keep Seniors Protected from Identity Theft

Research shows that seniors today have more access than ever to the internet. This includes the use of smartphones, tablets and even computers. As seniors dive into the world wide web, their identity information is at risk for hackers and thieves. So, how do we keep seniors safe from identity theft? Read on!

Special Father's Day Ideas for Seniors

If you’re fortunate enough to have your own father in your life as a senior, or are a caregiver for a senior dad, there are lots of ways to make their Father’s Day fun and special! Let’s look at some great ideas…

Making A Caregiver Feel Comfortable In Your Home

It’s always a little awkward to have a caregiver come into your home full-time, and it takes some adjusting for everyone to have a successful outcome. Let’s look at some helpful tips for making a new caregiver feel comfortable and valuable in your home!

3 Ways to Help Seniors Improve Their Memory

Everybody complains of memory loss as we grow older. Whether we’re looking for car keys, important paperwork or trying to remember someone’s name, it seems we have had to accept that memory loss just comes with the aging process. When older adults suffer from dementia or Alzheimer’s, memory loss can be much more pronounced and difficult to deal with. There are some ways to help make it better, though. Let’s look at some tips!

Common Challenges Caregivers of Dementia Patients Face

If you’ve ever been a caretaker for a senior family member, you already know how difficult it can be. The toll it can take emotionally and physically can be daunting if you aren’t prepared. Let’s look at some of the most common issues associated with being a full-time caregiver and what you can do about it. Remember, knowledge equals power!

Risk Factors for Strokes Among Seniors

As the fourth leading cause of death in America, stroke statistics are frightening to say the least. Someone will die from a stroke every five minutes. So, it pays to know more about stroke, how it happens, who is at risk, and what to do should one occur. If you are a senior, or a caregiver for a senior loved one, you need to know the facts on strokes!

Memory Loss: When to Be Concerned

Have you ever heard the phrase, “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks?” Many seniors start worrying that they are losing memory and cognitive thinking skills as they age, and many of them think it just comes with growing older. To some degree, that can be true, but how do you know the difference between normal memory loss from aging and a cognitive decline such as dementia? Read on…

How Sandwich Generation Caregivers Can Relieve Stress

It’s stressful enough being a caregiver for an aging parent, but when you are also in the “sandwich generation,” things can be even harder. The sandwich generation refers to adults caring for senior parents as well as children young enough to still be in the home. Here are some helpful tips for easing the stress of caring for two different generations.

How to Defuse Anger in a Senior with Alzheimer's

If you are a caregiver for a loved one with Alzheimer’s Disease or dementia, you already know that it can be difficult for them to appropriately express anger. So, what to do when that anger seems to be spewed at you? Read on.

What to Eat and Not to Eat with Parkinson's Disease

You’ve probably heard of Parkinson’s Disease or know someone who suffers with it. It is a progressive disease that affects the central nervous system, making movement, balance and muscle control become very difficult. Over time, it can cause total loss of control over certain body functions. Although there is no cure, there are many treatments to help manage the disease. One such option involves nutrition. Keep reading to learn what seniors with Parkinson’s should be eating.

Helping Seniors Have Healthy Skin

As we age, our skin becomes thinner, less elastic and transparent, making bones and veins more visible. If you’ve had years of sun exposure, the aging process on your skin will be even more pronounced. Seniors often deal with skin problems as a result of aging. Here are just a few of the things to watch out for:

Lowering the Risk of Heart Disease Among Seniors

Did you know that heart disease kills more people than any other condition in the United States? While there can be genetic risk factors that increase your odds of developing heart disease, most often it is brought on by lifestyle choices that can be corrected. With one in four people dying from heart disease, it’s time to learn just what does put seniors at risk!

Healthy Food for Thought: How Nutrition Affects Seniors

Never has there been a time when we are more conscious about what we eat, our overall health, and how food affects us. There is no question that aging can be significantly impacted by the foods we eat, and as older adults approach their senior years, it will become clear that food choices will impact BMI (body mass index) and the measurement of the waist. Both things can put as at risk for many diseases when not kept at healthy levels. Learn more:

Caring for Someone with Dementia

Dementia is a condition that happens in the brain and is often marked by memory loss and confusion. It affects mostly seniors and can make normal tasks difficult to perform as it progresses. Here are some tips for those who are caring for a senior adult with dementia:

How Dance Can Improve the Lives of Seniors

Did you know that seniors can actually overcome many challenges of aging simply by dancing? It’s true! While we might not think of dance as something elderly people like to do, you might be surprised if you just ask them! Beyond the great physical benefits, here are some ways that dance can improve the quality of life for your older adult!

How to Tell if Your Parent Isn’t Eating Well

Sometimes it is hard to tell when an older adult isn’t getting enough nutrition. If you’re concerned about whether your aging relative is eating well, here are some things to look for.

Do You Know the Seven Signs of Parkinson's Disease?

Parkinson’s disease can be difficult to detect, sometimes even for doctors. That’s because the symptoms can be very mild at first. They can also be different for one person to the next. For example, one person may experience hallucinations, but another person may never have them. In addition, the disease doesn’t move at the same pace for everyone. If you’re concerned about Parkinson’s disease in an older relative, here are 7 signs to look for.

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