Do the holidays stir up warm memories of baked goods, caroling, toasty firesides, and family fun? Or does the mere thought of a celebration send you into a panic about all the things you need to do, all the people you need to support, and all the challenges you’ll face in supporting an ailing senior? If you’re like most people, you probably feel a mix of warmth, dread, excitement, and anxiety when you contemplate the holiday season. Make this holiday count for every member of your family, including seniors who are struggling, with these tips.
This month, everyone’s abuzz with talk of Thanksgiving meals. As you page through mouthwatering recipes and delectable desserts, don’t forget about the senior in your life. Taste buds change as a person ages, and health conditions such as dementia and gum disease can make it difficult for seniors to eat many holiday favorites.
For most people, the flu is a temporary annoyance that plunges their house into disarray and loses them a week of work. But for some — especially seniors and those with weak immune systems — the flu can be lethal. Ninety percent of flu-related deaths and up to 70 percent of flu hospitalizations occur in seniors. In the 2016-2017 flu season, more than 12,000 seniors died. The great tragedy here is that the flu is almost completely preventable. Here’s how you can keep your senior loved one healthy this flu season.
Caring for a senior loved one, whether you do it daily or manage it from a distance, is hard work. It is also lonely work and can make the typical family caregiver feel isolated from their peers. Unfortunately, caregiving can lead to serious consequences, including caregiver stress and burnout, which increases the chances of a variety of health conditions.
Most people are familiar with the physical challenges that aging presents — aching joints, a higher risk of falls, changing skin. Aging also affects the way people think and learn because the brain shrinks and becomes less adept at mastering new information. This can affect memory, slow thinking, and make it more difficult for a person to master new skills. However, the changes are subtle, and people of all ages experience periodic memory slips and gaps in knowledge. Distinguishing the signs of normal aging versus dementia is critical for healthy aging and planning for the future.
More than 43 million Americans provide care to a loved one, 15.7 million of which are caring for a senior who is suffering from dementia. Twelve percent of parents are also caregivers, squeezing them between two challenging roles. Although loving your aging parents comes naturally, caregiving does not. There’s a steep learning curve for everyone who steps into this vital role. So don’t feel guilty because you don’t immediately know how to manage the many needs of your aging parents. This simple checklist can help you protect your parents and make the most of your caregiving efforts.
Senior adults are often at a higher risk for certain medical diseases or conditions as they age. Unfortunately, older adults living with complex medical conditions can also be diagnosed with more than one serious and complicating disease as well. Breast cancer is an example of a disease that can be discovered at any age, but the risk does increase as women age past 60.
The transition to senior living can save money, improve your quality of life, and eliminate the stress of homeownership. No more leaky roofs, overgrown grass, or rodent infestations for you. Exceptional senior living communities take care of most of your daily needs, allowing you to map out and pursue your ideal retirement. A sudden accident or natural disaster, however, can undermine your quality of life, even in a great senior community. Investing in renters insurance is one of the best financial decisions you can make, even if you haven’t hung onto much stuff. Here’s what you need to know.
For many seniors and their families, the most difficult aspect of transitioning to senior living is deciding when to make the move. As soon as seniors move to senior living, they’re often happier and more engaged, with more chances to socialize, and support whenever and wherever they need it.