Superfoods for Senior Home Care Patients

Last week, we wrote a bit on certain spices that can help the elderly better manage inflammation. We here at Best Home Care thought we would expand on that with some super-foods for seniors that can not only improve their overall health but prevent common health problems and even help to slow the aging process.

 

Here are some easy and everyday superfoods that have great benefits and should be easy to find at the supermarket:

 

  • Tomatoes: Whether you think they are a fruit or vegetable, there is no denying the health benefits of tomatoes. They contain something called lycopene, which helps to reduce the risk of heart disease and certain cancers as well as promotes bone health.
  • Green Tea: Tea has been known to improve brain function, reduce risks of diabetes and depression as well as certain cancers. Many studies also show that green tea provides many anti-aging benefits!
  • Red Wine: Wine increases the good kind of cholesterol while also lowering the risk of osteoporosis, gingivitis, and tooth decay.
  • Dark Chocolate: Dark chocolate in its most natural state (without being overly processed or lots of extra sweeteners) is actually very good for you! Its antioxidants help to reduce risk of heart disease and improve brain function.

 

Best Home Care is always looking for ways to improve the quality of life for seniors and others receiving home care. Whether it be a large or small change, we know that sometimes just that extra little bit of thought can make a big difference in the comfort and care of seniors.

 

Best Home Care specializes in providing quality home care in the form of PCA services, daily caregivers, and 24-hour nursing. We provide elderly home care, pediatric home care, as well as disability home care and in-home counseling services.

 

For more information on how we can support your homecare services, feel free to give us a call at (651) 330-2550 or send us an email at info@besthomecaremn.com.

Healthy Summer Cooking for Senior Home Care Patients

Options for Senior CareEveryone loves a barbecue! It is one of the best parts of the summer months, and enjoying summer cookouts is something everyone can be a part of. However, seniors receiving home care services and their PCAs can find it tricky to balance eating healthy and eating deliciously. Especially for those dealing with a chronic disease, finding the right foods to eat and what to avoid can have a significant impact on their health.

 

At Best Home Care, we want to make health and happiness coincide as easily as possible. So we have found several spices that can help reduce inflammation.

 

This summer, personal care assistants that are cooking for senior home care patients should try adding:

  • Cloves
  • Ginger
  • Rosemary
  • Turmeric
  • Cinnamon
  • Oregano
  • Sage
  • Thyme
  • Garlic

 

Inflammation can be a source for a lot of chronic diseases, including heart disease and cancer. Some other healthy summer foods to keep close by that help to lessen inflammation are:

  • Fish – (especially salmon) contains healthy omega 3’s as well as anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Dark Leafy Greens -Especially spinach, kale and collard greens.
  • Blueberries – These provide many antioxidants as well as anti-inflammatory qualities.
  • Tea – Matcha tea is a type of extremely nutrient rich green tea that supports immune function and heart health.

 

Throw together a salad with some spinach, kale, and some blueberries as a healthy side dish at your next barbecue or just make a big bowl of it and bring it to your loved one to eat throughout their week.

 

The home care professionals at Best Home Care know that keeping good health doesn’t have to come at the expense of enjoying the golden years. We’re ready to support you with quality home health care services including home care for seniors, pediatric home care, home care services for those with disabilities, and 24-hour home nursing care. Learn more about the services we provide click here.

 

For more information on all the services we provide click here, For any questions regarding Best Home Care and our services you can call (651) 330-2550 or send us an email at info@besthomecaremn.com

Father’s Day Fun for Seniors Home Care Recipients

home care services, pca services,We have finally made it to June, which makes it officially summer and time to enjoy the warm weather with pool parties and barbecues. Conveniently, it is also the same month as Father’s Day! But celebrating Father’s Day can be tricky as dad gets into his later years. As dad gets older, it’s important to make the day as special as possible to let him know how much you care. Here are some fun ways to enjoy Father’s Day with fathers receiving senior home care services:

 

  • Take it Outside! Especially if your dad is an outdoorsman, he will appreciate going out for a walk, boat ride, fishing, or even seeing a local baseball game to enjoy the warm weather.
  • Explore His Interests! If your dad likes art music or history, take him out to a museum or exhibit. You could also check out events like plays or lectures or even battle reenactments if your dad is a true history buff.
  • Plan a Day Inside! If your dad is more of a homebody, plan a day of fun indoor activities. Enjoy a baseball game on the TV, play board games or have a potluck with family while watching old home videos.

 

The home care professionals at Best Home Care know that spending time with your loved ones is so important, especially in their later years. We provide home care services for the elderly as well as disability home care for all ages. Since our start in 2005, Best Home Care has made it our mission to provide quality home care and PCA services to give you peace of mind that your loved ones are in good hands when you are not there.

 

Browse our website to learn more about our Twin Cities home care company or contact us directly to learn more about how we can help you provide the best home care possible! For information on our home care services, give us a call at (651) 330-2550, or email us at info@besthomecaremn.com.

Making Allergy Season Easier for Seniors

As springtime begins, we all enjoy getting back outside to enjoy the warmer weather. But one unfortunate downside of springtime is the many allergens in the air. Here at Best Home Care, we know that these allergens make it an especially challenging time of the year for seniors.

 

Most antihistamines are not recommended for seniors as they can interfere with other prescription medicines and increase blood pressure, but there are other ways to weaken the effects of seasonal allergies. Here are some tips from Best Home Care on how to make allergy season easier for seniors receiving home healthcare:

 

  • Know The Pollen Levels: If there are specific days you plan on being outside, like Memorial Day for instance, check the pollen levels along with the weather report. You can also plan outings when the levels are going to be low, making for a much more enjoyable day.
  • Wash Away the Allergens: To prevent pollen from spreading inside your house, wash your hands once getting inside and toss your clothes and linens in the dryer rather than hanging them outside. Pollen and other allergens can collect on our clothes and get in the home.
  • Run The Air Conditioning: Having the windows shut and preventing the wind from blowing in irritants can make a big difference in managing allergy symptoms. This can be tricky for seniors though, who do not get as hot in the summertime. But if allergies are a concern, having the windows closed and the air conditioning on makes for much more comfortable senior homecare experience in the spring and summer months.

 

Best Home Care knows the importance of providing quality homecare for seniors and can answer all of your questions regarding home healthcare services.

 

For more information on how to make allergy season easier on the seniors in your life or if you have any questions regarding elderly homecare, contact our home health professionals at (651) 330-2550. We can help answer any questions you may have regarding in-home care services, home nursing services, or in-home care costs.

What are the Best Clothes for Senior Home Care Patients?

With the snow melting and the weather warming up, most Minnesotans are putting away their winter clothes and bringing out the short sleeves. For PCAs providing in-home supportive services for seniors, now is the perfect time of year to evaluate your patient’s wardrobe and help them make the best decisions on what to wear this summer. Instead of basing their wardrobe on fashion, personal care assistants and family caregivers should focus on comfort, cleanliness, and accessibility.

 

There are several factors to consider when purchasing new clothes for seniors this spring:

 

Comfort: This is especially important for home care patients with sensory issues. Choose soft and loose fabrics that won’t irritate the skin. Rip off the tags to help avoid the annoyance of rubbing. Ensure that clothing is not too tight around the wrists and ankles as this can reduce circulation to extremities

Cleanliness: Many times an Alzheimer’s home care patient will only wear a few select clothing options leading them to get dirty very quickly. Consider buying duplicate options of those clothes so that they will always have clean options to wear.

Accessibility: Seniors suffering from arthritis and other joint problems or disabilities can have a difficult time putting on clothes each day. Easily accessible clothes can help make it easier for them to dress themselves. Button-up or zip-up shirts and pants with elastic waist bands are great options for seniors with these issues.

 

If a senior has trouble dressing themselves, personal care assistants and family caregivers should provide assistance to ensure the senior’s safety and comfort.

 

For more information on best practices for senior summer clothing, contact the home care professionals at BestHomeCare. As a leading Minnesota home care agency, we are proud to help PCAs and family caregivers prepare for summer and provide the best home care possible.

Travel Dos and Don’ts for a Safe and Successful Holiday Season

Senior Home Care, Personal Care AssistantsThe holidays are here again and for many people that means traveling by plane, train, or automobile to head ho-ho-home to visit family. With a senior travel companion now receiving elderly home care services, dodging hundreds of probing but only slightly differentiating questions from every relative might not be your largest obstacle this year. Traveling with someone who is accustomed to around-the-clock home care requires a good deal of research and planning. Get started by skimming Best Home Care’s list of dos and don’ts for a safe and successful holiday season!

 

 

This Holiday Season, Do:

  • Remember to be realistic: Your travel capabilities will likely differ from those of seniors. Small tasks, like carrying a suitcase, may seem impossible to them. Act generously and volunteer to lift or move heavier objects for your senior home care patient.
  • Call airlines ahead of time: Thankfully, airlines provide plenty of amenities to assist PCA healthcare, but PCAs should contact airlines about wheelchair accessibility before traveling. If special needs are mentioned last minute, the staff has no obligation to accommodate them.
  • Keep a consistent schedule: Most home care providers, especially specialists from the Best Home Care, agree that creating and maintaining a consistent schedule is important. This includes medication, therapy, and meal times.

 

This Holiday Season, Don’t:

  • Forget about medical records: Bring extra medication and a first-aid kit. Keep phone numbers for and prescriptions from doctors handy in case of emergency. If your senior home care patient has a pacemaker or other internal devices, ask an security official and medical professional if they can go through a metal detector.
  • Take a flight with connections: Do your best to avoid booking tightly scheduled connecting flights since seniors will have trouble rushing through a busy airport. Similarly, try to break up a long car trip into smaller chunks.
  • Underestimate travel time: Seniors often opt for the elevator or escalator when you might be used to the stairs. You should also expect the number of bathroom breaks to increase.

 

Traveling with seniors is a wonderful way to create lasting memories. Complete your research and planning sooner rather than later for an incredible trip. Contact a helpful home care specialist from Best Home Care for additional advice concerning spending the holidays with seniors.

Call a TV Time-Out: Five Television Alternatives for Seniors

bigstock-home-caregiver-7540770With hundreds of cable channels available, it is understandable for seniors receiving PCA services to get sucked into a fifth episode of The Golden Girls on TV Land, a second feature film starring Clint Eastwood, or third hour of up-to-the-minute sports news coverage on ESPN. In fact, retirees spend more than half of their leisure time watching TV according to a study from U.S. News & World Report. That adds up to about four hours per day on average.

 

While television time at a quality home care center can be relaxing, Best Home Care is confident that seniors are searching for more meaningful ways to spend the rest of their retirement. Call a TV time-out and share these five fun screen time alternatives from Best Home Care with your favorite retiree or personal care assistant.

  1. Volunteer Work
    • It can be difficult for professionals to immediately stop working after spending years committed to a career. Volunteering at a local hospital, library, food pantry, or art center is a positive way to contribute to the community and share your skill set.
  2. Adventurous Cooking
    • So many aspects of our daily lives, including meals, seem rushed (like daily life at a personal care agency). Additional leisure time allows seniors the opportunity to slow down, relax, and enjoy the process of preparing and eating food. Try substituting some of your favorite frozen dinners or take-out dishes with healthier, home-made versions. Get started by skimming our Eating Right for Seniors blog series.
  3. Home Improvements
    • Stop watching a carpenter craft a solid oak side table or an interior decorator sew pillow covers for some outdated accessories on HGTV and tackle these projects in real life!
  4. Physical Activity
    • Balance every hour of TV time with a bike ride around the block, journey up and down the stairs, or stroll through the garden with a friend or your home attendant. Incorporate some stretching before and after exercising to help prevent sore muscles. Best Home Care recently revealed their top five stretches for seniors in elderly care homes here.
  5. Reading Literature
    • Cracking open a book is more mentally stimulating than staring at a screen. If you lack motivation to start a book or have trouble selecting titles, join a book club. These meetings also provide an excellent opportunity to socialize and meet people who share common interests, perhaps even another suggestion on this list!

Contact Best Home Care to learn more about incorporating TV alternatives into your premier home care plan!

Stretching for Seniors: Top 5 Benefits and Moves

family home caregiver, home care professionalIt is natural for your muscles and joints to weaken as you age. However, the extent to which your strength, flexibility, and circulation deteriorates is dependent on the care you give your bodies. Stretching is vitally important for seniors and their home care aides to keep in mind.

Below are Best Home Care’s top 5 benefits that stretching has for seniors:

  1. Increased Strength
    • Stretching boosts strength and can help raise energy levels.
  2. Maintained Flexibility
    • Stretching can help prevent simple tasks like bending down to tie your shoe from becoming tiring chores that require help from a home care attendant.
  3. Improved Circulation
    • Stretching promotes stronger blood flow circulation and stops discomfort from muscle cramps after sitting for a long time in an elderly care home.
  4. Improved Posture
    • Stretching strengthens your core and can help seniors sit up straight.
  5. Reduced Risk for Injury
    • Seniors can recover faster from the inevitable stumble with regular stretching. This also helps them avoid increases in the cost of home care.

It is easy to forget to plan a little extra time to stretch, but it is an essential part of keeping seniors receiving elderly home care services healthy. Try incorporating these 5 moves from Best Home Care into your routine by setting aside a designated time each day. Start with 5 to 10 reps for each stretch and increase that number once you feel ready and your home care specialists agree.

  1. Shoulder Roll
    • Sit with your feet flat on the floor. Roll your shoulders up, back, down, and forward in a circular motion.
  2. Ankle Circle
    • Sit with your feet flat on the ground. Lift one leg off the floor and roll your ankle in a circular motion. Try a clockwise and a counterclockwise motion. Repeat with the other ankle.
  3. Straight Arm Raise
    • Lie on your back with knees bent and arms at your sides. Lift one arm off the floor to an upright position. Repeat with the other arm.
  4. Knee to Chest
    • Lie on your back with knees bent and arms at your sides. Lift one knee toward your chest and return to the floor. Repeat with the other knee.
  5. Hip Flex
    • Begin on your hands and knees with your back straight like a table top. Slowly move your hips back before returning to the starting position.

Remember to keep breathing while stretching and to stop if any stretch causes pain. To learn more about stretching for seniors contact Best Home Care!

Eating Right for Seniors: Curbing the Sweet Tooth

elderly senior being brought meal by carer or nurseIt’s no secret that seniors like to eat sweets. Spend any time with a senior citizen and you’re likely to be offered candy, desert, or a cookie. While tasty forms of hospitality, this growing love of sugar among the elderly is the result of a natural human progression that we will all experience.

 

The sense of taste is directly correlated to the number and sensitivity of taste buds. Humans have between 10,000 and 15,000 taste buds at our best. However, as we age we lose taste buds and the ones we have left become increasingly less sensitive. As a result, sweets and salts take over our cravings as we try to get the same enjoyment out of eating. Unfortunately, these foods often come with increased calorie counts and greater amounts of fat. The lack of nutritional value in these foods can be particularly dangerous for a senior’s diet, putting them at risk for severe health concerns.

 

Our senior home care professionals experience this everyday while working to keep their patients eating healthy. It can be hard to curve the senior sweet tooth, but there are good tactics to keep them eating healthy while still enjoying the foods they eat. Below are some healthy snacks that make for great substitutes to sugary treats:

  • Cut fruit mixed with flavored yogurt
  • Applesauce with cinnamon
  • Seedless grapes with honey
  • Vegetables with nut butter dip

 

If a senior has trouble swallowing or digesting solids, a great solution is blended drinks. Preparing fruit smoothies can be a healthy treat that also has great nutritional benefits.

 

When it comes to preparing foods for seniors, it’s important to not deny them their cravings. It’s important to maintain a good balance of sugary treats with nutritional food options in a senior meal plan. With home care resources and professional caregiver support, Best Home Care helps personal care assistants and the family caregiver build healthy senior home care plans. Contact our Twin Cities home care professionals to learn more!

Eating Right for Seniors: The Warning Signs of Poor Nutrition

Five Things Every New Family Caregiver Needs to Know  - personal care providersWhether we realize it or not, the food we consume everyday impacts our overall health in major ways. While we typically associate poor eating habits with weight gain and obesity, poor nutrition can present itself in many different ways and intensify the severity of existing health conditions. This is especially true in the case of those receiving senior home care services over the age of 65.

 

According to FeedingAmerica.org, 1.2 million households with seniors living alone experienced food insecurity in 2014. Many times these seniors have the money to purchase food but were unable to access the resources or ability to prepare meals for themselves. As a result, food insecure seniors are at an increased risk for chronic health conditions:

  • 60% more likely to experience depression
  • 53% more likely to report a heart attack
  • 52% more likely to develop asthma

 

In-home supportive services from a trained personal care assistant or family caregiver can support the nutritional health of senior. A home caregiver must also be aware of the warning signs of malnutrition in seniors and know how to respond appropriately. Below are several common signs to look out for if you believe your home care patient or loved one is suffering from malnutrition:

 

  • Observe Eating Patterns and Habits: Keep a log of what and when the senior home care patient eats. Be sure to only list foods that were consumed. This will help you get a better understanding of what (if any) problem exists. Be sure to look for any significant gaps in meal times or lack of nutritional foods.
  • Watch for Weight Loss: Along with a meal log, track the patient’s weight on a daily basis. Depending on age, any significant weight loss may be an indicator of malnutrition.
  • Other Warning Signs: Wounds healing poorly and easy bruising are two other symptoms of malnutrition.

 

Being proactive is the best practice when providing senior home care services in order to prevent malnutrition from growing into a larger issue. The home care professionals at Best Home Care assist hundreds of PCAs as they provide at-home care for seniors in the Twin Cities. Contact our team to learn more about incorporating malnutrition prevention into your home care plan and find caregiving resources to help you provide the best home care possible.