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What You Need to Know: Medications and Interactions

As people age, their bodies change. These changes can affect the way medications are absorbed. If a person loses weight, they may require less medication than they did previously. When organ systems slow down, they affect how fast or slowly medications work.
When older adults take multiple medications, there is a risk that the medicines can react and cause side effects. Interactions may cause some medications to be even more effective while other medications may be less effective. Certain foods, such as grapefruit, may have interactions with medications that cause undesirable effects as well. While the side effects that occur from drug and food or drink interactions are usually minor, they can also be serious and even life threatening.

Organizing Weekly Medication

It’s critical that you and your loved ones know each of the medications you are taking and if any have interactions with other medications, foods, or drinks, especially alcoholic drinks. The best way to find out if there are any interactions is to ensure that every member of your health care team – physicians, pharmacists, nurses, assistants, and family members, have the complete picture of your conditions and medications.

When you consult with your health care professionals, follow these tips:

  1. Medications + more. List all medications and doses including any over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, dietary supplements, and even eye drops or creams.
  2. Keep a list. Keep an up-to-date list of all medications (per tip #1) along with your current medical conditions and medical history.
  3. Consult with physician. Don’t stop taking a medicine unless you’ve consulted with the physician who prescribed it.
  4. Foods can interact, too. Tell your doctor if you are on a diet or have special eating habits.
  5. Get changes in writing. When a physician makes changes to your medications, be sure to obtain the information in writing and communicate with your other health care providers so they are aware.
  6. Pharmacists can help. Double check for any potential medication interactions with your pharmacist. In addition, if needed, request easy-open containers and large-print labels.
  7. Understand new prescriptions. Before you leave the physician or pharmacist with a new prescription, don’t forget to ask:
    • Can you confirm the name and correct dose for this medication?
    • Is this a generic? What is the brand name for the generic?
    • Can you describe the appearance (i.e. large blue and white pill)?
    • What does the medication do and when can I expect to see results?
    • What is the dose? What if I miss a dose or take too much?
    • What are potential side effects? Are there any contraindications with my other medications?
    • Are there any foods or activities I should avoid while taking this medication?
    • Should I take the medication with food or on empty stomach? When should I take this medicine in conjunction with these other medicines I am taking?
    • Will this medicine work safely with the other medications, over-the-counter medicines, vitamins and supplements I take per the list?
    • How should this medicine be stored? How do I obtain refills?
  8. Keep them to yourself. In addition, don’t forget that you should only take medicines prescribed for you.
  9. Keep them cool. Store your medications in cool, dry places away from sunlight.
  10. Don’t mix! Do not mix different types of pills in one container. It’s best to keep them in the original container.

For a complete guide on medicines, visit “Medicines and You: A Guide for Older Adults”, published by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration by clicking here.

Expicare Nursing Agency, Inc.

Owned and managed by highly qualified Registered Nurses, Expicare is a recognized leader of home health care in South Florida. For over three decades, Expicare has provided unparalleled home health care to thousands of patients throughout Palm Beach County. From post-surgery assistance to compassionate care for patients and families struggling with Alzheimer’s, Expicare provides highly skilled nurses and nursing assistants to care for your parents or loved ones. For more information, contact 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

Caring For A Loved One Living With Chronic Pain

When a family member is living with chronic pain, it affects family and friends. The person with chronic pain may be unable to participate in common daily activities and may begin to withdraw socially. Avoiding relationships can lead to isolation and depression.
Learning how to help someone living with chronic pain means accepting some of these changes and navigating how to help your loved one cope, manage pain, and maintain communication. Finding a balance is important.

Daughter Consoling Mother in Chronic Pain

Here are a few tips to help your loved one stay connected with family and friends:

  • If he or she can manage some level of activity with pain, encourage him or her to make plans to spend time with friends and family. This can be a meal together or a short visit.
  • Find easy activities that you and your loved can do together. Perhaps a slow walk in the park or a simple art project can bring joy.
  • Encourage your loved one to take on tasks that he or she can physically perform. This will help keep him or her active and feel like a contributing member of the home.
  • Be patient with your loved one. His or her pain and abilities may vary from one day to another.
  • Take on the role of advocate and support your loved one by attending doctor appointments and helping him or her to accurately describe symptoms, ask questions, and take notes for future reference.
  • Sometimes, your loved one may not want to talk about the pain. Sharing your life activities, thoughts, and dreams may be refreshing conversation.
  • Check out online support websites for the condition that your loved one has. For example, if your loved one has been diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma, visit the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation at https://www.themmrf.org/ to find a great source of information about the disease, physicians, treatments, etc.
  • Most importantly, make sure you take care of yourself Take care of yourself so that you can take care of your loved one. Get plenty of rest, exercise, eat healthy foods, and take time each day to do something special for you.

    Expicare Nursing Agency, Inc.

    Owned and managed by highly qualified Registered Nurses, Expicare is a recognized leader of home health care in South Florida. For over three decades, Expicare has provided unparalleled home health care to thousands of patients throughout Palm Beach County. From post-surgery assistance to compassionate care for patients and families struggling with Alzheimer’s, Expicare provides highly skilled nurses and nursing assistants to care for your parents or loved ones. For more information, contact 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

How to Protect Seniors from Work-at-Home Schemes

Did you know that con artists who prey on innocent seniors, sparking their interest with work-at-home or get rich quick schemes, exploit people to the tune of $400 billion annually?

Older Woman Working On The Computer At HomeAppealing Scams. These tempting scams lure hundreds of innocent adults each week. Work-at-home scams vary from the promise of earning thousands per month through internet businesses to stuffing envelopes. Other common scams involve rebate processing where the victim is convinced to pay hundreds of dollars in fees for training and certifications and assembly work that requires upfront payment for the proper machinery. Mystery shopping, phony sweepstakes, multi-level marketing schemes, and medical billing “opportunities” round out the common at-home scams.

What do nearly all of these scams have in common? They either require upfront fees or personal credit card information. Don’t part with your money or your personal information!

If you are recruited for an opportunity or see an appealing ad for an at-home job, find out exactly what the job entails, who pays for the work, when the first paycheck will be received, and what the total cost of the program is including equipment, training or supplies.

Check out the company. Research the company online and check with the Attorney General by visiting naag.org and the Better Business Bureau bbb.org in the state where the company is based.

Prevent your loved ones from falling for a scam. While you can’t prevent every situation, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recommends a few things you can do to reduce exposure to con artists.

  • Put your loved ones’ addresses on the opt-out lists with the direct marketing association so that they won’t receive junk mail. Click here to opt-out.
  • Place your loved ones’ phone number as “unlisted.” Add their phone numbers to the “do not call” lists as well. Click here to opt-out.
  • Check their credit reports to find out if any new accounts were opened in their names.
  • If you need help explaining the scams or getting your loved ones to recognize they are victims, contact the AARP Fraud Fighter Call Center at 800-646-2283 toll-free.

Report a scam. If you or a loved one has been a victim of a scam, contact the company and request a refund. Then, file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) at ftc.gov/complaint or 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357). Also, contact the National Fraud Information Center at. http://www.fraud.org/ , the Better Business Bureau (BBB) at https://www.bbb.org/ and the US Postal Inspection Service at https://postalinspectors.uspis.gov/. Reporting the scam to these various organizations will help stop another person from being victimized.

Expicare Nursing Agency, Inc.

Owned and managed by highly qualified Registered Nurses, Expicare is a recognized leader of home health care in South Florida. For over three decades, Expicare has provided unparalleled home health care to thousands of patients throughout Palm Beach County. From post-surgery assistance to compassionate care for patients and families struggling with Alzheimer’s, Expicare provides highly skilled nurses and nursing assistants to care for your parents or loved ones. For more information, contact 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

Functional Flexibility for Seniors

We know that exercise is important for health and longevity. But do you know that flexibility is critical to your health also, especially as people age?

When you have a larger range of motion, you’re less likely to be injured while exercising or doing daily activities. Stretching will help your body to walk, lift, and bend with ease and it will even help you reduce pain and stress. So why not get started today?

Start warming up by walking outside or in place for 5 minutes. This will warm up your joints as you prepare to stretch. Next, begin with a simple stretching routine that you can do for 10-15 minutes daily, at least 3-4 days per week.

Make sure to include stretches that target the following body parts:

  • Neck
  • Shoulders and upper arms
  • Arms, chest, and shoulders
  • Back
  • Thighs
  • Hips
  • Hamstrings
  • Calves
  • Ankles

Neck Side Stretch

A simple stretch to start with is the side stretch. It’s a great stretch to do in the morning. For the neck side stretch, sit tall in a chair and gently lean your head to one side and then to the other side. Then, rest your palm on the left side of your head and gently pull your head to the right. Hold for 20-30 seconds. Now, repeat the stretch on the other side.

You might have done stretches before, but make sure to look online, obtain a book or video from the library, or attend a local class to learn how to do the proper stretches correctly. Some television networks offer stretching and other exercise videos through local programming or through “on demand” programming.

Tips

Here are a few additional tips to help you as you begin to stretch:

  • Don’t lock your joints while stretching.
  • Avoid jerky movements when stretching and don’t force a stretch that feels painful.
  • Don’t hold your breath. Breathe as you stretch.
  • Move fluidly and gently, holding each stretch for 20-30 seconds if possible.
  • Try a stretch a second time, reaching even further if you can do so without pain.
  • If you have had surgery, ask your physician before stretching.

The National Institute on Aging is just one of several organizations that provides internet-based information on exercising for seniors. Check out NIH’s Go4Life flexibility movements by clicking here.

If you have questions about an aging family member, contact us at 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

Expicare Nursing Agency, Inc.

Owned and managed by highly qualified Registered Nurses, Expicare is a recognized leader of home health care in South Florida. For over three decades, Expicare has provided unparalleled home health care to thousands of patients throughout Palm Beach County. From post-surgery assistance to compassionate care for patients and families struggling with Alzheimer’s, Expicare provides highly skilled nurses and nursing assistants to care for your parents or loved ones. For more information, contact 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

Seniors: Avoiding Phone Scams

Unfortunately, con artists frequently target our aging loved ones through phone scams and other fraudulent telemarketing activities. Con artists target seniors because they are gracious and trusting and likely to have excellent credit and a nice savings account. Moreover, when elders are victims of fraud, they may be ashamed and reluctant to report the crime. When seniors report these crimes, it may be days or weeks after the crime was committed, making it more difficult for them to give accurate accounts of the occurrences and allowing the crook more time to pull off the crime successfully.

Avoid Phone Scams Targeting Seniors

Of all the crimes and fraudulent activity committed against seniors, phone scams are likely the most common. Telemarketing fraud or phone scams typically involve individuals acting as “sales people” or “company representatives”, soliciting personal or financial information in exchange for bogus products, free vacations, fake prizes or low-cost healthcare products.

Listening for the Warning Signs

Fraudulent calls often include these types of offers:

  • “Risk-free offers.”
  • “Free vacations or free prizes! You just have to pay taxes or shipping costs.”
  • “Free or discounted product. You simply need to give your bank account or credit card information.”
  • “You must act now, or the offer won’t be valid.”

These “offers” should be considered warning signs. It’s important to let your loved one know what to look out for so he or she can be more aware of these potential scams. In fact, the FBI warns people to say, “no thank you” and hang up if they hear any of these bogus statements.

Tips to Avoid Phone Scams

Here is a summary of the FBI’s tips for avoiding phone scams:

  • Know the company. Only purchase from legitimate companies that you are familiar with. Before making any transactions over the phone, verify the name, business identity, business license number, and contact information. If you are not familiar with the organization, check with the Better Business Bureau at https://www.bbb.org/ or the National Fraud Information Center http://www.fraud.org/ before having any additional contact with the company.
  • Keep your personal information private. Never give out your date of birth, bank account information, credit card numbers, or social security number to any representatives calling by phone.
  • Get written documentation. Ask for brochures and hard copy information before you purchase, invest, or give to charities. If they won’t send you detailed information, they may not be valid.
  • Do not pay in advance for any services. And don’t agree to anything you don’t fully comprehend.
  • Don’t fall for the limited time offer. If the company or representative is pushing you to make a quick decision, recognize this as a “red flag.” Discuss any decision with knowledgeable family members or friends before making it – and if it seems “to good to be true” or if the deal “expires” within hours, it’s probably a scam. Stay away!
  • Do not give cash to a messenger. A “representative” that comes to your house is the way a con artist acquires your money without leaving a paper trail.
  • Don’t be a victim twice. If you have already been a victim of a scam, be cautious about calls from sales people claiming to help you recover your losses. These could also be scams!
  • Always report a fraud or scam to local, state or federal law enforcement.
  • Trending Scams

    Recent phone scams have involved con artists pretending to be from the IRS, from Microsoft or Windows tech support, from credit card companies, popular restaurants, and from phone application services. Con artists have even been known to use faith-based dating sites to gather information on victims, initiate relationships, and then create ploys to steal money.

    The con artists are creative, but with a calm mind and some clear discipline, seniors can protect themselves from these phone scams. Review the tips above with your loved one to be sure they don’t become a telemarketing fraud victim.

    If you have questions about an aging family member who prefers to continue living independently, contact us at 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

    Expicare Nursing Agency, Inc.
    Owned and managed by highly qualified Registered Nurses, Expicare is a recognized leader of home health care in South Florida. For over three decades, Expicare has provided unparalleled home health care to thousands of patients throughout Palm Beach County. From post-surgery assistance to compassionate care for patients and families struggling with Alzheimer’s, Expicare provides highly skilled nurses and nursing assistants to care for your parents or loved ones. For more information, contact 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

Power of Attorney 101

If your loved one were to become incapacitated and unable to make important decisions independently, what would you do?

Perhaps not the most uplifting of conversations, but considering these situations and how to handle them should be a priority, especially if you have aging parents, close friends, or elderly family members.

Putting a simple legal framework in place can help ease the concerns and give family members and friends peace of mind. Since aging loved ones must be competent to legally sign documents, it’s important to broach this subject with aging loved ones before they have serious health conditions that may affect their cognitive or communication abilities.

Here’s what you need to know:

What is a Power of Attorney (POA)?

A power of attorney (POA) is a legal document that allows an individual (the “principal”) to appoint an individual (the “agent”) who will manage financial, legal and/or health decisions on his or her behalf. Typically, the “agent” is a close relative or trusted friend. A Power of Attorney (POA) becomes effective once the appropriate signatures and a notarization is complete (varies by state.)

What is a Durable Power of Attorney (POA)?

A Durable Power of Attorney is just like the POA but becomes effective only if the “principle” becomes incapacitated (as certified by a physician.)

What is a General POA?

A general power of attorney gives the “agent” broad guidelines to make legal, financial and health decisions for the “principal”.

What is a Financial POA?

A special power of attorney provides only specific powers to the “agent” when the principle is not able to make important decisions. In the case of finances, a “principle” can designate an “agent” to make financial and legal decisions on their behalf.

What is a Healthcare POA?

A POA for healthcare is an “agent” who can make health and medical decisions on behalf of the “principle.”

How do you set up a POA?

Once the “principle” selects the agent, the two individuals should discuss the responsibilities of the “agent” and the wishes of the “principle.” At this point, the principle should consult an attorney who can prepare the customized POA documents.

If you have a tight budget, you may consider using a POA template from a reputable company that provides legal documents online. Once you’ve filled out and printed the documents, the “principle” and the “agent” will need to sign. Additional signatures and notary requirements vary by state. In Florida, the document will need to be notarized and signed by two witnesses.

With so many other priorities in your life, creating a POA may be low on the list. But don’t let your loved ones miss this important step to ensure that their best interests will always be at heart.

If you have questions about an aging family member who wants to continue living independently, contact us at 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

Expicare Nursing Agency, Inc.

Owned and managed by highly qualified Registered Nurses, Expicare is a recognized leader of home health care in South Florida. For over three decades, Expicare has provided unparalleled home health care to thousands of patients throughout Palm Beach County. From post-surgery assistance to compassionate care for patients and families struggling with Alzheimer’s, Expicare provides highly skilled nurses and nursing assistants to care for your parents or loved ones. For more information, contact 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

Caring For A Loved One With Vision Impairment

According to the National Federation of the Blind Fact Sheet, over 5.5 million seniors are blind or visually impaired in the U.S. With the large group of aging baby boomers, the number of blind or visually impaired seniors will likely double. Nearly 99% of people who are blind have lost their vision due to glaucoma, macular degeneration, or diabetes. Low vision and blindness are large, growing segments of the aging population.

Caring for an aging senior with vision impairment requires common sense, forethought, and patience. The following recommendations will help caregivers know what to focus on when it comes to caring for seniors with low vision.

  1. Select a recommended ophthalmologist who specializes in vision impairment/ low vision. Make regular appointments for a dilated medical eye exam so he or she can properly diagnose and treat eye conditions or diseases. Keep the ophthalmologist informed of any vision or eye changes.
  2. Create a healthy lifestyle that includes ample sleep, exercise, and a healthy diet with lots of fresh fruits and vegetables and minimal sweets and alcohol. Dark, leafy greens and healthy fats have nutrients that nourish the body and eyes.
  3. Determine what home modifications will be most helpful and make them. Removing worn or wrinkled carpet to avoid tripping is an important first step. If possible, replace with no-skid flooring. Keep furniture out of walkways and keep chairs pushed in under the table. Install grab bars in bathrooms, hallways, and for stairs. In addition, check suggestions at the American Foundation for the Blind here.
  4. Remove any potential hazards and eliminate clutter. Small rugs and cords can be tripping hazards. Use baskets or bins to store items that may be difficult to locate if misplaced, such as keys and remotes.
  5. Rooms with contrasting colors and good lighting are very important for individuals with low vision. Color contrasts between walls and furniture, and between walls and stairs can help low vision seniors to discern the difference. Using contrasting colors in the bathroom also makes it easier to distinguish towels and bath mats.
  6. Make sure your loved one can easily identify different medications. Select at least one or more of these ideas to implement:
    • Extra large print labels
    • Containers with tactile labels
    • Special medication dispensers offered at pharmacies
    • Prescription bottles with recorded message labels

Finally, take advantage of state and private rehabilitation services for the blind and visually impaired. These services provide training on techniques to manage independent living. The American Foundation for the Blind can help you find local services here.

If you have questions about an aging family member with impaired vision who wants to continue living independently, contact us at 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

Expicare Nursing Agency, Inc.

Owned and managed by highly qualified Registered Nurses, Expicare is a recognized leader of home health care in South Florida. For over three decades, Expicare has provided unparalleled home health care to thousands of patients throughout Palm Beach County. From post-surgery assistance to compassionate care for patients and families struggling with Alzheimer’s, Expicare provides highly skilled nurses and nursing assistants to care for your parents or loved ones. For more information, contact 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

Nursing Care for Disabled Veterans

Our United States Military Veterans have sacrificed for the benefit of our country. They have protected our safety and security and fought for peace. While we want all of our soldiers to come home safe and sound after protecting our country, not all do.

We mourn the casualties. We help the wounded. We cherish the homecoming of our loved ones.

When wounded soldiers return home, they often need medical treatment and time to heal. Sometimes, they heal exceptionally well and can live bold, independent lives. Other soldiers require more support and care for a few weeks, months, or even years.

If a veteran is unable to work due to a service-connected disability, the veteran may be entitled to specialized services through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The specialized service may provide an Independent Living Plan as well as counseling, specialized medical treatment, individual technology assistance, and other support to help the individual return to independence. Typically, these services can continue as long as 24 months.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and several non-governmental organizations provide support to our veterans. To begin finding more information, click here to learn more about general benefits for veterans. Click here to learn more about disabled veteran benefits.

Disabled veterans may also apply for help with adaptive equipment and assistive technology that may help them to communicate, live more independently within a wheelchair-accessible home, make home structural alterations to accommodate specific needs, care for themselves, accommodate their needs for driving, or help them to do their job.

Professional caregivers can also play a critical role in the lives of disabled veterans by providing help with mobility, companionship, and assisting with personal care as needed. Caregivers can also complete basic housekeeping tasks including preparing meals and washing laundry. Finally, caregivers can be instrumental in checking vitals, dispensing medicine, and helping with artificial limbs or walking aids.

If you are considering finding a professional care giver for a disabled military veteran and have questions, call us at 561-736-1422 or toll-free: 855-730-9895.

On behalf of Expicare Nursing Agency, Inc., we salute our military veterans. We thank you for your service to our country!

Expicare Nursing Agency, Inc.
Owned and managed by highly qualified Registered Nurses, Expicare is a recognized leader of home health care in South Florida. For over three decades, Expicare has provided unparalleled home health care to thousands of patients throughout Palm Beach County. From post-surgery assistance to compassionate care for patients and families struggling with Alzheimer’s, Expicare provides highly skilled nurses and nursing assistants to care for your parents or loved ones. For more information, contact 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

Signs that Your Loved May Need At-Home Care

When an aging loved one recovers from surgery or an injury, you expect that they will need help at home during the recovery process.  But for those aging relatives who may not be recovering from surgery or an injury, it’s important to be aware of the signs that they need help.

  1. If a loved one has recently lost their driver’s license or you are questioning their ability to drive safely, it’s time to consider some type of assistance. He or she will still want and need to leave the house to do errands, make appointments, and fulfill social engagements.  Losing the ability to drive feels like losing freedom.  Caregivers can provide a safe transportation alternative.
  2. If medical concerns such as Parkinson’s or arthritis are creating mobility issues, it may be hard for your loved one to maintain stability or strength while moving from place to place. If this is a concern, it’s time to make home modifications so that your loved one is safe at home.  It may also be the time to consider in-home care to reduce the risk of a fall.
  3. Discussing at-home healthcare options with elderly parent

  4. If you have noticed memory loss with your loved one, especially short-term memory loss, it’s time to consult with his or her physician about the symptoms. In addition, it’s time to review how your loved one is remembering to take medications and use proper hygiene.
  5. Medication mix-ups can be dangerous. If your loved one is not able to manage their own medications, either due to memory or mobility issues, it’s time to make a change.  Daily visits from a loved one, friend, or a home healthcare assistant can be a critical step to ensuring your loved one taking the correct doses of medication.
  6. How many times has your loved one been in the ER in the last 3 months? If that number is greater than one, it’s time to evaluate why — and what changes may need to be made.  The next question to ask is whether your loved one would be better off with in-home assistance.   In many cases, at-home health care assistance can reduce the need for frequent ER visits and can help your loved one live more comfortably.

Whether your loved one is struggling with insomnia, chronic illness, limited mobility, or memory issues, a friendly, helping hand can often make a difference.  A professional caregiver can manage medications, assist with mobility issues, help with personal care, provide safe transportation to appointments or to refill prescriptions, and help reduce the risk of falls.  If you have questions about an aging family member,  contact us at  561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

Expicare Nursing Agency, Inc.

Owned and managed by highly qualified Registered Nurses, Expicare is a recognized leader of home health care in South Florida. For over three decades, Expicare has provided unparalleled home health care to thousands of patients throughout Palm Beach County. From post-surgery assistance to compassionate care for patients and families struggling with Alzheimer’s, Expicare provides highly skilled nurses and nursing assistants to care for your parents or loved ones. For more information, contact 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

Summer Safety Tips for Seniors

After experiencing cooler weather in the winter, many seniors are excited to spend time outdoors in the warm summer months. For families, summer is often the time for vacation and relaxation. So if you are traveling or enjoying the warmth and soaking up the sun locally, keep in mind that your aging loved one may need extra care at this time. The heat can be significantly more dangerous for aging seniors than for others. Make sure that your loved one follows the important tips below and has someone looking after him or her, so they can safely enjoy the summer.

Hydrate.

Since seniors have a higher risk than other age groups of becoming dehydrated, make sure your loved one drinks plenty of non-alcoholic and caffeine free fluids throughout the day. They might not be aware that they are thirsty, so frequent encouragement is important. In addition, drinks that replace salt and potassium are especially helpful for seniors to consume in the hot weather. Be sure that your loved always carries drinks and snacks when she goes out.

Elderly Couple Outside In The Summer

Stay Cool.

Seniors are more susceptible to the problems associated with heat including heat stroke and heat exhaustion. In addition, seniors who suffer from other chronic conditions may have exacerbated symptoms when in higher heat conditions. In order to keep cool, encourage your loved one to spend more time indoors. He or she may enjoy visiting shopping malls, libraries, museums, or going to a movie theatre. If your loved one doesn’t have air conditioning and the indoor temperature has become too warm, make sure to make alternative arrangements for accommodations. Extreme heat can be life threatening for the elderly.

Keep an Emergency List.

Help your loved one prepare an easy-to-read list of emergency phone numbers and keep it in an easy place to find. If he or she becomes ill and doesn’t have anyone nearby to help, he or she can contact someone on the list.

Know When to Get Help.

If your loved has been exposed to unusually warm conditions and is experiencing any of the following symptoms, take them into a cool, air conditioned location and get medical help right away.

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Headache, muscle cramps
  • Heavy breathing or rapid pulse
  • Lack of sweating when they should
  • Temperature over 104
  • Fainting
  • Dry, flushed skin
  • Abnormal confusion or agitation
  • Lethargy or exhaustion

You can help prevent your loved one from having the maladies associated with excessive heat by creating a plan to check on him or her when there is a heat wave in the area where they live. Remember that your loved one may not realize he or she is becoming dehydrated. In these times, it’s important for someone to check in or stay with your loved one.

If you are concerned about your loved one’s wellbeing and are not able to physically be there or check on him or her, you may want to consider a home health care provider. A professional caregiver can ensure that you or your loved one is hydrated and is living in cool, comfortable conditions. A caregiver can also check vitals, monitor health, and assist errands such as refilling prescriptions.

If you have questions about an aging family member, contact us at 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

Expicare Nursing Agency, Inc.

Owned and managed by highly qualified Registered Nurses, Expicare is a recognized leader of home health care in South Florida. For over three decades, Expicare has provided unparalleled home health care to thousands of patients throughout Palm Beach County. From post-surgery assistance to compassionate care for patients and families struggling with Alzheimer’s, Expicare provides highly skilled nurses and nursing assistants to care for your parents or loved ones. For more information, contact 561-736-1422, toll-free: 855-730-9895, or visit www.expicare.com.

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