Synergy Home Care Blog - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/rss/Synergy Home Care BlogSoothing Dementia Patients Through Music - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/november/soothing-dementia-patients-through-music/senior woman playing piano with younger woman

While music does not play a part in the actual treatment of dementia, it can offer benefits in social, emotional and cognitive skills. It can also reduce behavioral problems and aggression in individuals with dementia. “Accumulating evidence shows that persons with dementia enjoy music, and their ability to respond to music is potentially preserved even in the late or severe stages of dementia when verbal communication may have ceased.” 

And even though the music itself does not act as a medical treatment, it can aide in the quality of life for both patients and their caregivers. Music can help relieve stress, anxiety and depression for both parties. As well, music can be used to connect with individuals with dementia who have trouble communicating. 

close up of guitar neck and hands playing it

When it comes to finding the right type of music to help a loved one with dementia by soothing through music, consider these factors: 

  • Musical Preferences – It’s probably not best to try to stimulate your loved one with music that they are unfamiliar with. Try to find music that fits their taste or that they have fond memories attached to. Calm music is better to help soothe the environment and decrease agitation while a bit livelier music is great to get your loved one active and maybe even participate in a dance!
  • Sing With The Music – There are studies that suggest music can stimulate memory. Sing along with the music and try to get your loved one to join in. Music is great for people with dementia because the part of the brain linked to music memory is not affected by the disease. Not only will singing along help with memory functions, but it’s a great way to enhance mood and creating bonding moments. 
  • Pay Close Attention – Even though you may pick music that you know that your loved one loves; they may not enjoy it at that exact moment. Watch body language and facial expressions to identify signs of enjoyment or agitation. If the individual seems to enjoy the music, play it for them often. If not, choose different music that might click better with them. 
  • Reduce Noise – While you are playing music, be mindful of what is happening around you. TV and other outside noises can cause over-stimulation and confusion. Close off any sounds that could disturb the music and allow your loved one to focus on the music alone. 
  • Music And Sleep – If your loved one responds well to calming music, it may be a good idea to play calming music to help your loved one fall asleep. Likewise, it could be useful during meal times to alleviate agitation during meals and help the individual eat and digest food better. 

Even though music therapy isn’t considered a medical treatment, there are obvious benefits that can help comfort and ease your loved one’s emotions during periods of discomfort. This is a great tool for caregivers to use also to decompress and release tension from full-time and even part-time caregiving. If you are unsure which music to try with your loved one, try different types of music for one that fits. Don’t be afraid to ask your doctor for any suggestions or resources he/she might have. 





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Mon, 25 Nov 2019 19:31:57 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/november/soothing-dementia-patients-through-music/
Isolation, Sedentary & Loneliness - Dangerous Trifecta Threatens Senior Health - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/november/isolation-sedentary-loneliness-dangerous-trifecta-threatens-senior-health/senior woman alone on couch looking pensive

Unless you have a reason to notice, you may not recognize the startling reality of the aging adult population who are plagued by loneliness and isolation. There isn’t a simple factor contributing to this growing concern, but a number of complex reasons that over the past 10 years, the AARP Foundation is reporting a significant increase (a total of about 5 million people) over the age of 45 report feeling lonely.

We often attribute senior loneliness to a lack of family and socializing which is true, but it gets much more complex than this. The AARP has reported that a contributing factor is the growing number of adults who do not have children to care for them as they age. Of course, living alone doesn’t necessarily mean that a senior will suffer from loneliness. Regular involvement in social activities can help alleviate feelings of loneliness and isolation, but as seniors age social contacts often dissipate as seniors deal with the loss of friends, retirement, health issues and mobility restriction.

Seniors who experience loneliness and isolation are more likely to suffer from depression and engage in destructive behaviors like poor dieting and lack of exercise. Many of these adults become accustomed to a sedentary lifestyle – basically inactivity which creates more health concerns. An article published by the NCBI’s US National Library of Medicine concluded that research data regarding associations between social isolation, loneliness, and physical activity suggests that social isolation in seniors is greater with “reduced objective physical activity and greater sedentary over time.”

Health is already a concern for seniors who struggle with feelings of loneliness and isolation. This population is at a higher risk for depression, high blood pressure, dementia and other cognitive problems, and a lower overall quality of life. Adding sedentary into the mix only causes more health concerns as these three factors seem to intensify each other.


Combating Loneliness, Isolation and Sedentary Behavior


senior woman participating in a movement class

Social connections and interactions increase both psychological and emotional well-being and plays a significant positive role in physical health.  Caregivers, caregiving facilities and even communities are starting to acknowledge how much social involvement and companionship contribute to the well-being of seniors and are taking active measures to help reduce the risks of isolation and loneliness. Here are a few steps you can take to help improve the overall health and well-being of a loved one who may be at risk.

  1. Encourage social involvement. It can be difficult to get a loved one out of the house or even in the mood to enjoy social activities but be creative. Keep in mind their interests and hobbies and participate with them. 
  2. Exercise does not have to be exertive. It isn’t necessary to go jogging or hiking to get good exercise. Seniors can get great exercise from taking a dance class, gardening, or swimming at the community pool. It doesn’t have to be intense, just active.
  3. Hire a companion. If you have trouble finding a lot of time to stay involved, hire an in-home aide who can provide conversation and companionship. In-home aides are great at helping out around the house, transporting seniors and helping with daily living tasks – but they also make great friends. 

The ultimate goal is good health. Loneliness, isolation and a sedentary lifestyle can quickly work against each other so it is important to take action and encourage involvement and exercise early. 

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Mon, 18 Nov 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/november/isolation-sedentary-loneliness-dangerous-trifecta-threatens-senior-health/
Car Accident Statistics 2019: are your elderly parents still driving? - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/november/car-accident-statistics-2019-are-your-elderly-parents-still-driving/US Car Accident Statistics

Are your aging parents still driving? Read this.



1. The yearly cost of traffic accidents in the United States is estimated to be $871 billion.
(Source: Safer America)
A study conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has shown that the cost of traffic accidents is almost $900 billion on an annual basis. The current figure is probably even higher, since the survey was carried out in 2010.

2. Reportedly, 1.6 million car crashes were caused by cell phone use while driving.
(Source: Edgarsnyder.com)
The National Safety Council reports that cell phone use while driving causes approximately 1.6 million car crashes in the U.S. every year. In other words, 1 out of every 4 car accidents is caused by driving and texting at the same time.

3. Every 50 minutes, a person dies because of driving under the influence of alcohol.
(Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
According to 2016 Road Safety Facts data provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 29 people die every day in automotive crashes caused by drunk drivers.

4. It is estimated that seat belts saved almost 15,000 lives in 2017.
(Source: nhtsa.gov)
It seems that the average American is well-aware about the risk of not wearing a seat belt. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that during 2016, 89.6% of drivers were properly buckled up.

5. Drivers aged 16 to 19 are three times more likely to be involved in car crashes than older drivers.
(Source: Safety Resource Center)
Car accident statistics by age are clear. A study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety shows that teenage drivers are at greater risk than elderly people. Some 12.2% of car accidents are the responsibility of teen drivers, while 7.5% were caused by drivers over 65, according to the United States Census Bureau.

6. Men are more likely to die in a car accident than women.
(Source: allenandallen.com)
During 2015, there were about 25,000 fatal car crashes involving male drivers, and about 10,000 caused female road traffic deaths. On average, men drive 30% more miles annually than women. Additionally, men are more likely to have driving-related jobs.

7. The most common cause of traffic accidents in the United States is distracted driving.
(Source: Strongtieinsurance.com)
Distracted drivers cause more traffic accidents than people who are speeding, driving under the influence of alcohol or road rage. Some of the most common causes are using a mobile phone, eating or drinking coffee while driving.

8. Road traffic injuries and deaths are statistically most likely to happen on Saturdays.  (Source: avvo.com)
According to the NHTSA, the first day of the weekend is the most dangerous day to drive, primarily because of increased traffic. When it comes to working days, the risk is highest at rush hour, between 5 and 6 p.m.

9. Only one 1 of 31 car models in the U.S. has adequate headlights for safe driving.
In 2016, National Highway Safety Insurance Institute has examined the headlights of 31 midsize car models, and only one met the institute’s safety criteria. Even the luxury, such as Acuras, models received low scores.

10. The Word Health Organization ranks US highways as significantly more dangerous than highways in most Northern European countries.
(Source: Popular Mechanics)
How many U.S. fatal car accidents occur on highways? The death rate is three times higher than in the UK — 11 deaths per 100,000 population on an annual basis. Arizona’s I-10 highway is considered the most dangerous.

11. When it comes to a fatal car accident, men are two times more likely than women to have been driving under the influence.
(Source: gorelick-law.com)
According to a 2016 NHTSA survey, almost 75% of DUI-related traffic accidents involve male drivers. Only 14% of women who were driving-impaired had higher alcohol levels in their blood than considered safe (more than 0.08%).

12. Motor-vehicle crashes are one of the leading causes of death in the U.S. among minors aged 1 to 19.
(Source: U.S. News)
Out of 20,360 deaths among children in 2016, more than 4,000 lives were lost because of car accidents. More than 128,000 were injured. The data was presented by the University of Michigan Injury Prevention Center based on statistics provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

13. Drivers and passengers are the most common victims of road accidents.
(Source: Aceable)
Some 70% of those injured and killed due to traffic accidents are located inside the vehicle. The other 30% are motorcyclists or pedestrians. The greatest risk, as well as responsibility, is on drivers.

14. More than 90% of all car crashes in the US involve driver error.
(Source: crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov)
The National Motor Vehicle Crash Causation Survey (NMVCCS) was conducted from 2005 to 2007 with the aim of identifying the crucial factors that lead to motor vehicle crashes. According to their automobile accident stats, fewer than 10% of accidents are caused by vehicle defects, the environment, and unknown reasons.

15. Although passenger car crashes happen more often than truck crashes, the latter are more serious.
(Source: personalinjurylawyersaustintx.com)
An automotive crash involving a truck is more likely to cause serious injuries than a crash involving only passenger cars. Since transport vehicles outweigh passenger vehicles up to 30 times, the force of the impact is greater. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has reported that 70% of the people who die in truck crashes are occupants of other vehicles, rather than the truck.

16. Using a cellphone while driving contributed to more than 800 U.S. traffic deaths in 2017.
(Source: Green Car Congress)
A 2018 survey conducted by IIHS showed that drivers are 57% more likely to use a cellphone than drivers who answered the same question in 2014.

17. Despite the declining trend, deaths caused by motorcycle crashes are 28 times more frequent than other fatal traffic crashes.
(Source: Governors Highway Safety Association)
Although there was a 5.6% decrease in motorcycle fatalities in 2017 compared to the previous year, motorcyclists are still significantly over-represented in all traffic deaths. Every year about 5,000 people get killed on motorcycles.

18. There were almost 42 million licensed drivers aged 65+ in the United States in 2016.
(Source: Federal Highway Administration)
The risk of getting involved in a car accident increases as people get older, so the percentage of drivers older than 65 significantly influences overall traffic safety. During 2016, almost 300,000 elderly drivers were treated in hospitals for vehicle crash injuries in the United States, and about 7,400 were killed.

19. In 2010 alone, more than 1.4 million drivers were arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or narcotics.
(Source: bactrack.com)
This figure represents just 1% of the 112 million adults who, according to their own confession, were driving under the influence each year. Approximately 28 people die every day as a result of drunk driving.

20. Only 5% of parents correctly place their child in their vehicle’s infant safety seat.
(Source: The Journal of Pediatrics)
A recent study published in the Journal of Pediatrics covered about 300 parents aged between 25 and 34. It showed that most parents don’t know how to properly install the infant seat.


Does Being Involved in a Car Accident Affect Your Car Insurance Rates?



If you caused the accident and the party made a claim against you, the answer is as clear as day: your premium will increase. If you have 1–3 at-fault accidents on your record, you’ll likely pay 40%–60% more.

However, even if you didn’t cause the accident, your premium may rise. Yes, you read that correctly—even if the other driver was 100% at fault, if you file a claim, you’ll pay more for insurance at renewal. The more affordable insurers, like Progressive and GEICO, tend to jack up rates the most. According to research by ConsumerFed, the former will increase your rates by 16.6%, while the latter will increase them by 14.1%. Nonetheless, the states of Oklahoma and California have banned this practice.


Frequently Asked Questions


How many people die in car accidents?
It’s estimated that around 37,000 people die in automobile accidents annually in the US alone. On a global level, the number of deaths is about 1.24 million per year. 

Which state has the most car accidents?
Florida and Tennessee have the highest number of car crashes annually. However, the majority of fatalities occurred in Texas and California. 

What is the main cause of car accidents?
The leading cause is distracted driving. Common examples include using a mobile phone, eating, or drinking a beverage while driving. Other frequent factors are lack of driving experience, driving under the influence, and speeding.

Where do the most car accidents happen in the US?
The most common places where car accidents occur are parking lots, rural highways, stop signs, and two-lane roads. Additionally, many accidents happen during rush hour and in intersections. 

What are the chances of getting into a car accident?
Since there are approximately 328.8 million people in the US, and about 2.35 million become injured in a car accident annually, the chances are very low. To be precise, the odds that you’ll get injured while driving are 0.7% in a single year.

Thank you to    for providing this information.

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Mon, 11 Nov 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/november/car-accident-statistics-2019-are-your-elderly-parents-still-driving/
How Seniors Can Prevent Hospital Re-admission - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/october/how-seniors-can-prevent-hospital-re-admission/

There is something worse than being in the hospital: being readmitted after you've been discharged.

According to an article published by the , nearly 20% of all Medicare discharges had a readmission within 30 days, and 12% of re-admissions are potentially avoidable.  An observation to consider is "potentially avoidable" means that you and your caregivers can diminish or eliminate the need for re-hospitalization by following your aftercare instructions from the medical team. Give yourself enough time and rest to fully recuperate before you jump back into your pre-hosptialization lifestyle.

Although medical professionals take appropriate precautions to help patients avoid post-hospital readmission, here are five steps that you can take to avoid having to be readmitted after a hospital stay.

  1. Clear Communication – Discharge instructions may not be 100% clear to everyone leaving the hospital. Medical professionals typically take time to communicate after-care instructions and provide pamphlets and other literature about how to best care for yourself. However, the communication may not be clear enough. Be sure to ask questions if you don’t understand something or ask for written instructions if they are not provided. Language barriers can pose a problem for people as well. People with limited English proficiency are more likely to be readmitted after a hospital stay. Using an interpreter can help avoid a post-hospital readmission.

  2. Home Preparations – Hospital environments are prepped for ease and convenience to limit the risk of injury and illness. Home environments are not always ready to provide the same. Taking some small (or large) steps can help decrease the risk of a return hospital visit. Clearing clutter can decrease the risk of falls and trips, moving the patient from an upstairs room to a downstairs room can help them move more easily around the home, installing non-slip pads and grips in a bathroom can reduce bathroom injuries, and keeping phones in easily accessible locations can make it easier to call for help if necessary. 

  3. Don’t Miss Appointments – Follow up appointments are necessary to make sure that recovery is happening the way that it should. Avoidable illnesses and infections can be caught early on during post-hospital check-ups and curb a major health problem. Also, prescribed medications should always be taken as prescribed. Missing doses or taking too much could result in further complications. 

  4. After-Care Monitoring – A good support system and after-care monitoring can help resolve health issues quickly. Early intervention of illnesses, infections, and even side-effects of medication lower the risk of being readmitted to a hospital. Many people rely on family and/or friends to care for them after a hospital stay. Others are more dependent on staff inside a senior care facility. Either way, it is important that the support system understands what to watch for and how to provide the best support.

    Tele-monitoring and tele-communications are great ways to implement health care in the home. With the advancements in technology, patients can more easily communicate and visit with doctors and/or nurses from home to receive medical care as opposed to leaving the home and risking injury. This is an excellent alternative for people who struggle with mobility. 

  5. Hiring In-Home Aides – In-Home Aides are a great addition to support post-hospital stay. These aides provide support in several different ways and can provide absolute care to people who may not have family and friends nearby to help. In-home aides provide many different services like light house cleaning, cooking, shopping, help with general daily care, providing transportation and more. Your unique individual needs can be worked into the support that these aides provide.

A return to the hospital shortly after discharge is a great indication that the patient was not adequately prepared to go home. Taking the necessary steps to prevent post-hospital readmission not only helps individuals recover better and faster, but also reduces financial costs and can reduce the risk of future health concerns. Take time to take care of yourself or your loved ones by making sure communications about after-care are clear and the right level of support is being met. 

 

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Fri, 11 Oct 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/october/how-seniors-can-prevent-hospital-re-admission/
Why Routines are Good for Seniors - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/october/why-routines-are-good-for-seniors/Consistency and routine are valuable to all and necessary to many. explains that “people are creatures of habit, and routines offer a way to promote health and wellness through structure and organization.” For seniors, health and wellness are a concern and a priority. Daily routines offer more than just a few benefits for aging adults and can be a critical element in adult behaviors, sleep habits, appetite, mood, health, and overall well-being. 

This is a Wednesday list that SYNERGY HomeCare’s brand ambassador, Grandma Lill, 89, uses every day. While her daily calendar largely looks the same, she makes exceptions to add weekly chores such as laundry or grocery shopping and removing more strenuous plans such as swimming. For the most part, each day includes exercise, socializing and well-planned meals, followed by restful sleep.

a handwritten list of things to do today

Stress Reduction

Routines allow seniors to spend less time trying to figure out what to do, and more time on activities that provide meaning and enjoyment. This isn’t just a benefit to seniors but also to their caretakers. Knowing what to expect each day can minimize stress and reduce the chaos that can happen in life and create room for hobbies, socialization and much more. 

Many seniors suffer from health problems like anxiety, depression and cognitive problems that cause stress and confusion. Simple tasks like personal hygiene can become difficult and cause stress. Routines in daily living can help seniors manage everyday tasks and create a sense of control and independence that many aging adults feel a lack of as their mental and physical health starts to decline. 

Healthier Eating Habits

Seniors who do not plan out meals can miss out on essential nutrients that they need in their diets. Forgetting meals or forgetting to go to the grocery store to buy food are typical problems for aging adults as well. Advance meal planning can help seniors stay on track with diets and balance daily nutrition, and it can also help improve sleep habits and mood. 

For seniors who aren’t able to grocery shop or plan and prepare meals, home care services provide such a service to ensure they are eating well and as planned.

Better Sleeping Patterns

Many factors affect the sleeping habits and patterns in the elderly. Poor exercise, medical problems, medication, appetite, and stress are just some factors that cause a decline in the quality of sleep. Aging adults require 7-8 hours of sleep each night for their bodies to heal appropriately and to perform crucial physiological processes. Good sleeping patterns can significantly increase overall health and quality of life – and good sleeping patterns can improve by implementing a consistent sleep schedule. 

weekly calendar yo do list of grandma lill

Grandma Lill gives her daily lists a big thumbs up

Managing Dementia Symptoms

Daily routines offer benefits to anyone who follows them, however, for seniors with dementia, the benefits are much greater. , the Executive Vice President and director of programs and services for the New York Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association explains that people with dementia experience greater difficulty when attempting to do new things. Routine in daily living can help aging adults retain the ability to remember and perform daily tasks like brushing teeth, taking medications, and eating meals.

A high-quality of life is a primary goal for seniors but reaching that can be difficult. However, with the help of medical professionals and caregivers, seniors have a much higher chance of reaching this goal and improving mental, physical and emotional health. Just like any person, seniors are going to experience good and bad days, but keeping consistent routines and structures can provide opportunities for aging adults to get the most out of each and every day.  And give them something to look forward to.

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Mon, 07 Oct 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/october/why-routines-are-good-for-seniors/
Why Flu Shots are so Important for Seniors - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/september/why-flu-shots-are-so-important-for-seniors/Avoid the Fall flu – Why flu shots are so important for seniors

nurse giving senior man a flu shot in his left arm

It is a widely recognized fact that the flu can be extremely dangerous. But, as people age, the body’s natural immune system weakens, and viruses like the flu can be deadly. People 65 and older are at a much greater risk of developing complications from the flu than younger adults. In fact, the CDC has that in recent years, an estimated 70-90 percent of flu-related deaths occurred in people 65 years of age or older.

With these statistics, flu shots are obviously detrimental to the well-being of our aging community.

What Does The Flu Shot Do?

The flu shot, or flu vaccine, create the development of antibodies in the body. Because compromised and weak immune systems have trouble developing and fighting off viruses, the vaccine helps build those antibodies to assist the body in protecting against infection. The flu vaccine also protects against more than just one strain of the flu virus which can aid in the protection against 3 to 4 different types of flu viruses.

Flu vaccinations are also “updated” each season. The flu virus changes often and it’s important for the flu vaccine to keep up with the most current strain of the flu virus. The immunity of the flu vaccine does decrease over a year, so regular, annual flu shots are the best source of protection against the flu.

In the past, the flu vaccine has proven to reduce serious problems related to the flu virus. The flu vaccine has shown to reduce the illnesses that lead to hospitalization and death. The CDC encourages the aging community to get a flu shot every year, before the end of October.

Different Flu Shots To Meet Your Needs

The 65 and older-aged community should not rely on the nasal spray flu vaccine. Currently, there are two vaccines that are specifically made and approved for this age group, but the regular flu shot is an approved choice of flu vaccine. The 65 and older age group can choose whichever flu shot they prefer provided that it is approved for their age group.

Are There Side-Effects?

Mild side effects are reported for the high dose and adjuvanted flu vaccines. These side effects might include:

  • Headaches and muscle aches
  • Swelling, redness, and/or pain at the injection site
  • Malaise

Every flu season is different, and the influenza infection doesn’t affect every person the same way. Millions of people are diagnosed with the flu every year, many of which can avoid serious complications, hospitalization, and even death by receiving a yearly flu shot. If you aren’t sure where and when to get your flu shot, check with your doctor or local health department. The flu shot is offered throughout the flu season. You can also check in with a local pharmacy or an urgent care clinic.

Remember, the flu vaccine does not work immediately. It can take about two weeks for the antibodies in the vaccine to build up. Be sure you get your flu shot earlier in the season to prevent infection from happening early on.  

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Fri, 30 Aug 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/september/why-flu-shots-are-so-important-for-seniors/
Back to school, back to lonely - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/august/back-to-school-back-to-lonely/Back To School – Back To Lonely

grandma hugging goodbye to young granddaughter getting on the bus for school

For many seniors, summertime means visits from grandkids, fun activities, and companionship.  Many grandparents are called on to help keep an eye on the grandkids while their parents are working, but when summer comes to an end, that could mean an end to the fun socialization for grandparents.

Aging is not an easy process. Not only does health become more of a concern, but many factors also result in less social involvement. People 65 years of age and older are often retiring, some have health and mobility issues that reduce the ability to get out and be active, and many others may be experiencing hard times due to loss of a spouse and separation from children and grandchildren. When the summertime ends and the kids are getting ready to start another school year, put some of these fun tips into action and help your aging loved ones ease the burdening feelings of loneliness.

Tips To Ease Loneliness And Isolation

  1. Plan weekend activities with the kids to keep your loved ones excited and looking forward to something. It doesn’t have to be anything major. Cook a meal together or plan a movie night! Just be sure to let your loved ones know that you are there for communication and support. 
  2. Help promote exercise by helping your loved ones build a garden or plan a couple of evening walks. Exercise will stimulate the brain and decrease feelings of depression and sadness. It can also be extremely beneficial for adults with sleeping problems. 
  3. If your loved ones don’t live nearby, it can be harder to plan activities and include them in on events. Luckily, the internet offers a whole slew of resources that can help aging seniors stay connected. Here are just a few examples:
    1. Skype – It doesn’t have to be Skype. You can use Facebook Video Messaging, FaceTime, or any other online video device to stay connected. If your loved ones are missing grandkids, get the kids to video-chat about their day. This is a great way to help seniors feel involved and bonded with grandkids. 
    2. Social Groups – Seniors do not have to rush out to the local community center to socialize in today’s world. If your senior has mobility concerns, help them sign up for online social groups or support groups. This is a great way for seniors to learn more about using computers and the internet, but also to feel the support and excitement of connecting with others. 
  4. Send care packages. Care packages are a great way to let your loved ones know that you are thinking about them, and to maybe open their eyes and minds to new hobbies. For example, you can send a yoga care package one month and see how they enjoy it. Or gift them with a subscription to a fun online course. There are dozens of things that can help peak your loved one’s interest and also give them something to look forward to.

No matter what you decide to do, just remember that the key is to find something that helps your loved one feel included. Social connection and strong bonds can promote a better quality of life and better overall health.

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Thu, 29 Aug 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/august/back-to-school-back-to-lonely/
Mayor Proclaims Senior Selfie Month - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/september/mayor-proclaims-senior-selfie-month/ It's official! Mayor proclaims July 2019
Senior Selfie Month to End Alzheimer's


On May 31, 2019, Gilbert, AZ,  the Town of Gilbert Mayor Jenn Daniels proclaimed July as SYNERGY HomeCare's Official Senior Selfie Month to End Alzheimer's.

As Gilbert Mayor Jenn Daniels recognizes, our seniors are an integral part of our history and culture in the Gilbert Community. Together, the Town pf Gilbert and SYNERGY HomeCare, tirelessly support and promote any effort to improve quality of life for aging local residents. Mayor Jenn knows the power of senior selfies.

SYNERGY HomeCare is thrilled and honored to have the support of Mayor Jenn Daniels. And we're excited about doing it again next summer. 


 

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Thu, 29 Aug 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/september/mayor-proclaims-senior-selfie-month/
4 Tips to Help Seniors Stay Social - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/august/4-tips-to-help-seniors-stay-social/senior man smiling working with his young mentor
Being social and active is important for all people. Without socializing or participating in activities and events, people often feel isolated and depressed. For seniors, social engagement is not just important -- it is essential. During the senior years, older adults are at higher risk of suffering from social isolation and loneliness. Factors like physical health, mental health, mobility, resources, and environment can all prevent seniors from getting out into the social world or having a good time as often as they would like.

Bodies and minds change as people grow older, and so do their needs. Social needs should not be put on the back-burner. Staying social and connecting with other people is just as important as taking care of your body. An active social life and feelings of close connections with others can make people feel happier, raise their self-esteem and improve the overall health as well as their quality of life.

If you find yourself (or if you think your aging parents might be) staying inside or spending too much time alone, you may want to try a few new activities that can get you out mingling with new people. Here are four great ways to boost your social life and make new friends.
senior couple giggling while holding up a handmade cardboard sign that reads VOLUNTEER

  1. Get A Part-Time Job – You may be retired but that doesn’t mean that you can’t still make a little bit of money and get out of the house! According to a from the Families and Work Institute in New York and the Sloan Center on Aging & Work at Boston College, 13% of the 50 and older age group questioned reported that the reason that they worked after retirement was to interact with other people.

  2. Volunteer – Volunteering is deeply personal and satisfying for a lot of people. Many seniors find that volunteering gives them a sense of purpose and meaning. Volunteers can spend time helping patients in hospitals, with children who need a mentor, in a library or dozens of other places. The Senior Corps is a great resource for seniors looking for volunteer opportunities; for adventurous spirits, there are opportunities at the Peace Corps.

  3. Join A Group – Check in your area for senior groups that have already been formed, or form one on your own. Do you have a special interest that you would like companions involved in like daily walking, gardening, sewing or reading? There are many groups for seniors that are available or that can be created in your area to help seniors connect with each other and gain a feeling of camaraderie and friendship.

  4. Social Networking – Social networking can be a powerful tool. There are numerous support groups, dating apps and other types of online groups that allow people to interact in connect. In fact, to interact with other people.

Making friends as a senior does not have to be difficult or scary. Look for fun events and activities, join an online group or a local dating app and have fun! Making yourself available for more social activity can significantly improve your spirit and your health. If you are unsure of your limitations or have other concerns regarding certain activities and your health, be sure to talk to your health care provider before attempting anything new.

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Tue, 27 Aug 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/august/4-tips-to-help-seniors-stay-social/
The Power of Senior Selfies - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/august/the-power-of-senior-selfies/Step back, Millennials!

Today’s youth are not the only people who enjoy and benefit from taking and posting selfies!

senior couple holding phone with selfie showing

In fact, selfie-taking has become a fun and advantageous activity for the older population. Selfies are “technically” a social-media commodity. People enjoy taking pictures of themselves, getting “likes” and “comments” on their photos or commenting on another person’s  photos. Social media has made it incredibly easy for family and friends to stay connected even if they live hundreds of miles apart.

For seniors, the advantages don’t stop at enjoying a few comments on their posts but posting their own “selfies” can help decrease feelings of loneliness and isolation, provide the opportunity for self-expression, and can boost brain function.

Loneliness And Isolation
Seniors are constantly combating feelings of depression due to loneliness and isolation. Many seniors do not have the physical abilities to be as active in the community as they are accustomed. Some cannot drive and rely on others for transportation and many do not have the opportunity to get out of their homes and be as social as they would like. Loneliness for seniors is a very real issue that can devastate the overall health and quality of life. Seniors taking selfies and posting them on social media can help boost their self-esteem and get them interacting with friends and family that they miss and don’t get to see often. It also offers more facial recognition for young children that do not see their grandparents or great grandparents often enough to know who they are.

Self-Expression
Most everybody can agree that taking selfies is a fun activity. People LOVE adding funny filters and borders on their photos while sharing them. So do seniors. Have you seen photos on Facebook where parents are replicating their children’s photos in silly ways to make people laugh? Taking selfies and sharing them gives seniors a fun, new way to remind their friends and families that they still have personalities and like to have fun and enjoy life.

senior woman talking selfie w her white and black dog

Photos Are Great For People With Alzheimer’s
Visual aids are great for people with Alzheimer’s, no matter what stage they are in. Selfies can help seniors engage and be present in the moment, which can be a difficult task to accomplish. Taking photos with a loved one with Alzheimer’s and creating a fun photo album can help them reminisce on recent memories and recognize other people in the photos. This is an exciting and joyful way to help your loved one feel more involved and active. In fact, see the proclamation that Gilbert, AZ mayor made about senior selfies and Alzheimer's. It's amazing!

Selfies do not have to be limited to a senior taking photos of themselves. You can help them out by taking photos with them while they are performing an activity they enjoy, having meals with grandchildren, or sitting near a favorite pond. There are dozens of ways that selfies can be made into a life-enhancing activity for seniors. Get creative and help your loved one enjoy the life they are living and be actively a part of it more often!


September is the last month to post your Senior Selfie and SYNERGY HomeCare will donate $5 to the Alzheimer's Association for every Senior Selfie posted on their

Get busy seniors and let's make a dent in Alzheimer's research and cure!

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Mon, 26 Aug 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/august/the-power-of-senior-selfies/
Top 5 benefits of moderate walking for seniors - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/august/top-5-benefits-of-moderate-walking-for-seniors/

According to the World Health Organization, lack of physical activity is the fourth leading risk factor for global mortality. That means, physical activity is necessary to live a longer life. Everybody knows that exercise is healthy. But not all people are capable of certain types of activities and some just don’t consider themselves athletic. If that sounds like you then moderate walking may be a great alternative.

Walking is a great way to help the body stay healthy. While it is well-known that moderate exercise is beneficial for health and well-being, many people do not really understand the difference between walking and moderate walking. In the May 2009 issue of the American Journal of Preventative Medicine, a study was published regarding what we could consider “moderate walking.” 

Researchers determined that 100 steps per minute was adequate enough to achieve the benefits that come from moderate intensity activity.  Based off of this observation, a beneficial exercise program would require walking 3000 steps in 30 minutes, 5 times a week. 

People often think that they have to spend a TON of time at the gym, working on different parts of their body to see significant health benefits. This is not true. Moderate exercise has enormous health benefits. From improving mental health to losing weight, moderate walking can really enhance a person’s quality of life. Here are 5 major benefits that come from moderate walking. 

  1. Stress and Depression – Moderate walking can significantly decrease stress levels. If you feel stress taking a toll then take a 30-minute vigorous walk. Moderate walking can quickly release natural endorphins in your brain that stimulates a “good-mood.” Because of the naturally released, happy feelers, many mental issues like depression, anxiety, and anger can be alleviated. 
       
  2. Weight Control – With a healthy diet, moderate walking can help shed pounds. Stay consistent and strong willed and the results will start to show. Don’t get discouraged if results don’t show immediately. They will. Recruit a friend to be motivational and encouraging if the benefits aren’t showing right away.

  3. Blood Pressure Control – In some cases, cholesterol can be lowered enough to eliminate the need for blood pressure medications. For people with really high blood pressure, it can help sustain a more manageable blood pressure level. 

  4. Energy and Flexibility – If exercise has not been part of a lifestyle, the body loses energy and can feel stiff and achy. Moderate walking will stimulate the body, and if the exercise is consistent, the body will begin to feel more and more energetic naturally. Also, rigidity and stiffness can reduce drastically as you consistently get moving. 

  5. Sleep Issues – Whether the trouble is falling asleep or staying asleep, moderate exercise can help. As the exercise increases blood flow and circulation and relaxes the mind, then your body will follow suit, resulting in improved sleeping patterns. 

These benefits are at any age. In seniors, 150 minutes a week of even modest exercise can reduce the average risk of death by 30%. 

Take some time to develop new exercise habits and journal about it. Writing down the walking time and steps taken while also keeping track of the mental and physical benefits noticed can create a visual timeline that shows how beneficial it is. 

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Sat, 03 Aug 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/august/top-5-benefits-of-moderate-walking-for-seniors/
Prescription medication and sun mean seniors at risk this summer - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/july/prescription-medication-and-sun-mean-seniors-at-risk-this-summer/

If last week’s sweltering heatwave was any indication, it’s going to be a particularly hot and humid summer in the city. Extreme conditions can be hazardous to everyone, especially senior citizens, outdoor workers or those without air conditioning. Here are tips from experts on how to stay safe and cool in the heat.

Looking after senior citizens
While it’s important for everyone to find air conditioning or shade, senior citizens are less equipped to handle the heat, especially those who take certain prescription medications. Certain medications like antidepressants or antihistamines act on the part of the brain that controls the body’s sweat response, said Lisa DiMeo, owner of Synergy Homecare in Philadelphia.

“Up to 86 percent of seniors are on prescription medication, and they may be more at risk in very hot temperatures like we had,” DiMeo said. When temperatures reach the 90-degree threshold, DiMeo said Synergy is especially mindful of its patients, and that some senior citizens can be affected at temperatures even lower than that.

Here’s a list of effects prescription medications can have on the body in excessive heat, shared by Synergy:

  • Antidepressants and antihistamines act on an area of the brain that controls the skin’s ability to make sweat, putting the person at risk of overheating.
  • Beta-blockers reduce the ability of the heart and lungs to adapt to stresses, including hot weather. This also increases a person’s likelihood of heat stroke and other heat-related illnesses.
  • Amphetamines can raise body temperature.
  • Diuretics act on kidneys and encourage fluid loss and can quickly lead to dehydration in hot weather.
  • Sedatives can reduce a person’s awareness of physical discomfort, meaning symptoms of heat stress may be ignored.
  • Ephedrine or Pseudoephedrine, found in over-the-counter decongestants, decreases blood flow to the skin and impacts the body’s ability to cool down.

DiMeo emphasized the importance of storing medication in air-conditioned settings, as storing the medication in heat can affect the medication so it doesn’t work anymore.

“We are constantly reminding our caregivers to keep our clients hydrated even when they don’t feel thirsty,” DiMeo said.

What if the AC is broken?
That’s a daunting trial for anyone during the summer heat, but it’s not impossible to work around, said Mike Gulla, senior director of underwriting at home insurance company Hippo. There are small things you can do around the house to keep it cool, such as changing HVAC filters and sealing entryways so no heat can leak in.

Other things you can do include shutting the blinds to block out direct sunlight from getting in, swapping out incandescent light bulbs for LED lights to save energy and produce less heat, and setting fans to run counterclockwise or reverse to keep air circulating through the house.

“A big issue that causes air conditioning units to fail is a leak in the coolant when it works much harder to cool the house off in the heat but can’t, so it ends up breaking down,” Gulla said.

He recommended getting AC units serviced twice a year in the spring and fall to prevent the units from breaking down in the first place. Most AC units break down in the summer and may make it difficult to get immediate service performed in the middle of a heatwave.

“Similar to changing oil in a car, getting your AC looked at helps maintain the lifetime of the unit,” he said.

Protecting workers
Outside workers still have to work in the heat. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration predicts that dozens of workers die and thousands more will become ill working in extreme heat and humidity conditions each year. Under OSHA laws, employers must provide employees with a supply of water and shade, and also acclimate workers over four to seven days with increased workloads and frequent breaks as they acclimate.

“Warning signs of heat exhaustion include dizziness, weakness, headache, blurred vision, nausea and staggering,” said Scott Humphrey, second vice president of risk control at Travelers Insurance. Signs of heat stroke can include a red face, hot and dry skin, no sweating and a fast pulse. If you see someone exhibiting symptoms of heat exhaustion, take them to a place with shade or air conditioning, encourage them to stay calm and have them take frequent small sips of water or sports drink.

Employers should take measures such as providing workers with protective clothing such as light-colored or air-cooled garments to combat the heat, increase rest periods throughout the day and schedule hot work for cooler periods of the day.


Republished by permission from Logan Krum, an associate editor for the Northeast Times in Philadelphia under Donnelly Media Group.

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Mon, 29 Jul 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/july/prescription-medication-and-sun-mean-seniors-at-risk-this-summer/
Seniors: How to Beat Dehydration this Summer - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/july/seniors-how-to-beat-dehydration-this-summer/Seniors: How to Beat Dehydration this Summer


Staying hydrated is important for everyone, especially seniors! With the summer months upon us and as the days get hotter, not getting enough fluids in your body can cause serious health problems. Older adults, in particular, have a higher risk of suffering from dehydration and should take extra precaution.

Why are Seniors at Higher Risk?
There are a number of reasons seniors are more susceptible to dehydration. As the body ages, it changes. The older population experiences a reduced ability to conserve water and a reduced sense of thirst. Both cause an issue for seniors trying to balance important electrolytes and fluid intake. While the body struggles to conserve water – its ability to acclimate to temperature change decreases. Combining this challenge with a lack of thirst can be extremely dangerous.

Along with the natural aging process of the body, medical conditions can increase the chances of dehydration. Seniors who struggle with cognitive issues or dementia often forget to eat and drink. In later stages of dementia, they often lose the ability to swallow. These conditions make it more difficult to retain fluids and keep the body hydrated. There are other medical conditions and prescription medications that cause frequent urination which can deplete the body of fluid faster.

Because there are several different factors that pose a high risk of dehydration in seniors, it is extremely important to take necessary precautions and to pay close attention to the body. Whether you are looking after yourself or are the caregiver of an aging relative – it is important to watch for warning signs of dehydration and to have clear communication with a doctor to avoid complications.

Symptoms of Dehydration
Since it can be a struggle to balance fluid intake and manage other medical concerns, noticing early signs of dehydration and taking action can reduce the risk of serious medical problems like kidney failure, seizures and heat-related injuries. Some of the more common and noticeable signs of dehydration are dark colored urine, dry mouth, headache, constipation and muscle cramps. More severe indicators include irritability, dizziness, rapid heartbeat, low blood pressure and weak pulse.

If you notice early warning signs of dehydration, try to increase fluid intake. If plain water is refused, there are other options. Fruit-infused waters or diluted juice with 50% water are alternative options. Popsicles, smoothies and soup broths are good good options that can help seniors who prefer sweets or meals to drinking fluids. Raw fruits and vegetables have high water content and can serve as healthy snacks that will also improve hydration.

Speaking to your Doctor
When it comes to seniors and dehydration – there are many variables to consider. Seniors who have different medical issues or are prescribed prescription medications could be at a higher risk of dehydration than others. Be sure to talk to your family doctor and discuss your individual risk for dehydration. If you aren’t sure exactly what to ask your doctor about, here are a few questions that can help you get the conversation started and manage hydration in yourself or a loved one more effectively:

Do any of my prescribed medications cause symptoms that look like symptoms of dehydration?
Are any of my prescribed medications likely to increase the risk of dehydration?
Do you have any suggestions to keep hydration and electrolyte levels managed optimally?
When would dehydration symptoms require medical attention?
Is dehydration an emergency medical need that would require emergency attention?
Am I (or my loved one) displaying signs of dehydration currently that should be monitored?

If you have any other concerns regarding hydration maintenance and/or current medical needs and treatment, be sure to speak directly to your primary health care provider.

 

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Mon, 22 Jul 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/july/seniors-how-to-beat-dehydration-this-summer/
Benefits Of Strong Grandparent/Grandchild Relationships - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/may/benefits-of-strong-grandparentgrandchild-relationships/In recent years, an increasing amount of research has been done to show how strong relationships between grandparents and grandchildren benefit both generations. A Boston College associate professor of sociology, Sara Moorman, expresses that close grandparent/grandchild relationships often extend from strong overall family connections, but that the distinctive

How many times have you heard someone tell a story about their grandparents with a hefty laugh and a twinkle in their eye? Or how often do you catch yourself reminiscing about time spent with your own grandparents? The same thing happens when seniors laugh and smile at young children talking to them in the grocery store and they casually mention their own grandchildren. The connection between the two does is apparent and both ages gain measurable benefits from spending time with each other.

Benefits For Grandchildren

A showed how the role of grandparents in their grandchildren’s lives promotes well-being and decreases emotional and behavioral problems. The study reports that “more than 1,500 children showed that those with a high-level of grandparental involvement had fewer emotional and behavioral problems.” The relationship does not just impact the behavior and emotional stability of children but also into adolescence. Along with these benefits, grandparents offer guidance, support, and help children better understand and accept aging.

The benefits for grandchildren can stretch into healthier communication skills, success in setting and reaching goals, and stronger interpersonal relationship skills.

Benefits For Grandparents

The mutually beneficial relationship has just as many advantages for grandparents as it does for grandchildren. Many aging adults struggle with feelings of isolation, depression, and loneliness, decreasing the quality of life and sense of fulfillment that aging adults experience. Strong relationships with their grandchildren can promote a positive state of mind, a greater sense of purpose, and an opportunity to learn new skills and ideas from a new generation.

by The North American Menopause Society (NAMS) of 186 Australian women, aged 57-68, found that mental sharpness was increased in grandmothers who took care of grandkids once a week. Spending time with their grandchildren can help grandparents feel energetic and playful – but also fulfill a fundamental desire in the human development process to guide the next generation.

Grandparents can play a pivotal role in the lives of their grandchildren, providing a sense of calmness during crucial and devastating events such as the death of a family member or divorce. Equally, grandchildren give grandparents the opportunity to enjoy a new phase of life and to journey through the aging process with a sense of pride and accomplishment.

The relationship between grandparents and grandchildren can deeply impact both generations in a positive and important way. Research has provided much information about the significant benefits for both. As people are living longer, the relationships that the younger generation has with the older generation, and how we understand it is becoming more and more important and relevant in the overall quality of life.


 

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Thu, 16 May 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/may/benefits-of-strong-grandparentgrandchild-relationships/
Positive Benefits Of Pairing Youth And Older Adults - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/may/positive-benefits-of-pairing-youth-and-older-adults/Psychological research has advanced the notion that children benefit not only from the relationship they have with their parents, but also from other adults that they build positive and caring relationships with; adults who motivate, encourage, educate, and advise them. Thus, the emergence of mentors, guidance counselors, and other roles adults take in the lives of young people. But research has also shown that the interaction between children and older adults can significantly benefit the aging community as well. Susan Curnan, Brandeis professor and Executive Director of the Center for Youth and Communities says “the key is pairing great potential with great experience.”

An states “In promoting the well-being of the next generation, older adults experience fulfillment and purpose in their own lives.” Social development psychologists describe the final stage of emotional development is reached around the age of 60. Aging seniors often have trouble finding a sense of purpose and fulfillment in their later years and pairing them with youth can help them find that.

The mutual benefits that both children and seniors get from interaction with each other is evident in many different programs and facilities that bridge the gap between the two age groups. Intergenerational relationships have been shown to:

  • Decrease the fear that children have of aging and the elderly
  • Provide a sense of purpose to both children and older adults
  • Offer both age groups an opportunity to learn new skills
  • Alleviate the void of missing or distant grandparents/grandchildren
  • Reduce loneliness and isolation, and decrease the likelihood of depression in seniors
  • Help children discover talents and skills
  • Give seniors an opportunity to pass on practical and emotional wisdom

Though these are only some of the benefits that stem from children and older adult interaction, it is quite clear how important the intergenerational relationship can be. While the definite benefits are clear, one of the underlying advantages of these relationships is a greater ability to build a positive outlook on life and to limit focus on the negative. For children, this can result in a happier, more successful and enjoyable life. For aging adults, their perspectives of life can drastically switch from being unfulfilled and pointless to full and meaningful.

As Erik Erikson describes the “generativity” phase of human development, he commits to the interest that older adults develop in guiding the next generation. A sense of desire sprouts in this age group share time, experience, education and love. This gift loops back around to the younger generation that grows to be inspired by and grateful for the calm, patient, guiding hands that helped guide them maneuver through fearful and confusing ages.

Intergenerational relationships do not have to be between grandchildren and children. Children and seniors paired together can easily develop critical relationships that add value to each other’s lives and help each other move positively forward into the next roles in their lives.


 

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Tue, 14 May 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/may/positive-benefits-of-pairing-youth-and-older-adults/
Accessible Traveling – Prep Tips For Travelers With Disabilities - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/may/accessible-traveling-prep-tips-for-travelers-with-disabilities/The travel industry has not always been as accommodating for travelers with disabilities until recently. Thankfully, the industry is becoming more and more aware of the needs of the disabled community and they have been doing more assist travelers. The Americans with Disabilities Act has helped make sure people with disabilities receive equal and fair treatment which has helped, but there are still difficulties for disabled people as all people have different needs and require varying accommodations.

When we think about traveling, we typically don’t think about day-to-day travel needs. Because local travel happens much more often, it is a great idea to get ready in advance for any upcoming outings. For other types of travel, many of these same suggestions can prove to be very beneficial.

  • Call Ahead – If you are getting ready to go to a new doctor, dentist or other service provider, call ahead to see if they are fully accommodating or if there is anything they can do to help meet your specific needs. Upfront communication can help ease the process and decrease stress and anxiety of visiting a new and unfamiliar place.
  • Clear Communication – Whether you are speaking to an airline, a cruise line, a local doctor, or a hotel, clear communication about a disability can help industry workers prepare. A “disability” can mean many different things. To clear up confusion, communicate specific needs and ask how they can be accommodated.
  • Medications – If you are planning a longer trip, double-check your medication supply before you leave. Stressful and emergency situations could arise if a prescription runs out or is lost and there isn’t a way to refill it immediately.
  • Check With Your Doctor – Before you travel, make sure you clear it with your doctor. There may be precautions that you need to take or other elements of your condition that your doctor might be worried about. Make sure your doctor knows your travel plans and gives you the ok.
  • Exit Strategies – If you are using a new method of transportation, arrive in advance to speak to someone about entrance and exit strategies. Airplanes and cruise lines might have separate exit routes for wheelchairs or other mobility devices that can help boarding and leaving the vehicle easier.
  • Timeliness – Allowing for extra time before your method of transportation is supposed to depart can help ease the traveling process. Arriving late or with minutes to spare can take away from the time that you have to communicate with the necessary individuals and to allow for an easier transition. Make sure you have time to spare.

When preparing to travel, locally or otherwise, try making a checklist that can help you get to your destination with ease. Make sure you have everything you need packed and ready to go, plan for emergency situations, get tips and advice from your doctor or other medical specialists that know your immediate needs and enlist help from relatives and friends. Advanced preparation can make traveling easier and more enjoyable the more prepared you are.


 

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Wed, 08 May 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/may/accessible-traveling-prep-tips-for-travelers-with-disabilities/
9 Top Advancements In Disability Inclusion In America - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/may/9-top-advancements-in-disability-inclusion-in-america/“Disability is not destiny for either individuals or the communities in which they live. Rather, disability is shaped by personal and collective choices.

NCBI’s article talks about how the future of disability in America can be significantly altered by the choices America makes and the actions we take to improve disabling conditions. was put in place to protect people with disabilities from discrimination. The act has also helped provide access to places, equipment, and tools that were once inaccessible. The Americans with Disabilities Act has made sure that Americans with disabilities can live as every other American does. Here are 9 of the most beneficial advancements in disability inclusion so far today.

  1. Ramps, Railings, And Elevators – The installment of ramps, railings, and elevators in public places has made access to businesses, restaurants, and places of entertainment much more accessible to people using wheelchairs, crutches, canes, and walkers. People who were once unable to easily visit a restaurant or enjoy a movie at a theater can now do so with ease.
  2. Public Transportation – Public transportation has been a major advancement for society in general. Many people with disabilities who are unable to drive due to physical and mental impairments can more easily get to job interviews, go grocery shopping, and to doctor appointments.
  3. Parking Spaces – Thanks to advancements in public accommodations for disabled people, people who struggle with mobility are provided easier access to public buildings. Handicap parking is an ADA requirement that provides space for wheelchair loading and parking.
  4. Braille – Braille is an exciting advancement for our society. Blindness takes away the inability to read important information that society is given every day. The blind and low vision community can expect to be offered Braille so that they have access to many different types of medical and legal documents. It is also provided as access to education. Braille is not the only type of visual aid advancement who struggle with vision. There are also audio aids in telecommunications that allow people to hear what is shown on screens.
  5. Audio Aids – Audio aids serve people who cannot hear or have low-functioning hearing. Audio aids can include hearing aids and closed-captioning on television and computer screens.
  6. Building Accommodations – The structure of buildings has been altered to help ease the access to public facilities. Bathroom stalls and other doorways have been made larger to allow wheelchair access. Public buildings also install automated doors that open on their own, or with a push of a button.
  7. Vehicle Lifts – Public buses, school buses, and other types of public transportation vehicles have lifts installed for wheelchairs to load and unload.
  8. Service Animals – Service animals have deeply impacted the lives of disabled people in a great way. Service animals are often used by the blind and low-vision communities to help them get around. Service animals are the only type of animals allowed in many public buildings and on public transportation vehicles.
  9. All Abilities Parks – All abilities parks are a newer accommodation that is growing around the nation. All abilities parks are designed for children with all types of abilities to play and have fun with other children. Many offer sensory toys/objects, water spaces, trains, and much more.

There has been a lot of advancement in public accommodations for disabled individuals. Many of the advancements listed above would not have become a reality without the positive, forward-thinking people who recognized that “able” can happen with the right type of accommodations. In 1990, the ADA was a new source of hope for many people – and continues to be a source of hope for many individuals.


 

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Thu, 02 May 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/may/9-top-advancements-in-disability-inclusion-in-america/
Easy DIY Herb Garden Ideas For Small Spaces - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/march/easy-diy-herb-garden-ideas-for-small-spaces/Herb gardens are a fun accessory in any home. Lots of people enjoy spending time creating different types of herb gardens. The most creative ones are designed for small spaces like apartments without a backyard and above first-floor patios. There are dozens of ways that you can create your own beautiful herb garden, even if you feel like you don’t have space.

Here are some super simple and fun ways to create an herb garden of your own.

Outdoor Gardens

Putting herbs outside is the best way to go if you have space for it. Herbs need sunlight and definitely will thrive better if the environment is good. You can also get creative with outside gardens.

  1. Hanging gardens - Hang a plant holder from above to let your herbs grow. This way the herbs get sunlight and fresh air and take up no space at all. This is also a great way to grow tomato and strawberry plants. The combination of herbs and fruits is beautiful.
  2. Pallet gardens – Get an old pallet and turn it into a standing herb garden. Not only does it have the feel of an “in the ground garden”, but it also won’t take up a lot of space. Of course, this makes a gorgeous space after it is created. All you need is the pallet, landscape fabric, the plants/herbs you want to grow, and soil. You will staple the landscape fabric to one side of the pallet, fill the other side with soil and start planting. If you want to take it a step further, you could paint the pallet and identify which herb is going in which section. An added benefit of pallet gardens is how much easier they are to keep weed free.
  3. Teacup gardens – They can sit on your patio table with tiny herbs growing in them. They are decorative and fun! You can use containers that have special meaning to you.

Indoor Herb Gardens

Because herbs require sunlight, you want to make sure there is plenty of sun facing the garden. Indoor gardens are fun because there are several options to make your space special.

  1. Wall shelf gardens – Use mason jars or old rustic cups to plant herbs in and house on the wall shelves. Make sure the shelves are in a well-sunlit area.
  2. Windowsill gardens - If your kitchen has a window, use the windowsill to hold a number of smaller herb plants – succulents look amazing here too.
  3. Bookshelf garden – Use a slim bookshelf to create a unique indoor garden. Each herb can be identified using small picture frames as name holders. Never confuse your plants again.! This is a great way to expand your garden and get more out of it without taking up too much space.

Whichever way you choose to do it, growing a garden is therapeutic and fun. It is a hobby that can bring joy year-round.  It brings decoration and life into your home and gives you something to take pride in. These are just a few things you can do to create an herb garden in a small space. Use your imagination and see what you can come up with!  Then enjoy the fruits of your labors by quickly adding your homegrown herbs in meals. Be sure to share your gardens with us on our Facebook page.


 

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Thu, 28 Mar 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/march/easy-diy-herb-garden-ideas-for-small-spaces/
Top 5 Benefits Of Moderate Walking - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/march/top-5-benefits-of-moderate-walking/According to the World Health Organization, lack of physical activity is the fourth leading risk factor for global mortality. That means physical activity is necessary to live a longer life. Everybody knows that exercise is healthy. But not all people are capable of certain types of activities and some just don’t consider themselves athletic. If that sounds like you then moderate walking may be a great alternative.

Walking is a great way to help the body stay healthy. While it is well-known that moderate exercise is beneficial for health and well-being, many people do not really understand the difference between walking and moderate walking. In the May 2009 issue of the American Journal of Preventative Medicine, a study was published regarding what we could consider “moderate walking.”

Researchers determined that 100 steps per minute were adequate enough to achieve the benefits that come from moderate intensity activity. () Based off of this observation, a beneficial exercise program would require walking 3000 steps in 30 minutes, 5 times a week.

People often think that they have to spend a TON of time at the gym, working on different parts of their body to see significant health benefits. This is not true. Moderate exercise has enormous health benefits. From improving mental health to losing weight, moderate walking can really enhance a person’s quality of life. Here are 5 major benefits that come from moderate walking.

  1. Stress and Depression – Moderate walking can significantly decrease stress levels. If you feel stress taking a toll then take a 30-minute vigorous walk. Moderate walking can quickly release natural endorphins in your brain that stimulates a “good-mood.” Because of the naturally released, happy feelers, many mental issues like depression, anxiety, and anger can be alleviated.
      
  2. Weight Control – With a healthy diet, moderate walking can help shed pounds. Stay consistent and strong-willed and the results will start to show. Don’t get discouraged if results don’t show immediately. They will. Recruit a friend to be motivational and encouraging if the benefits aren’t showing right away.

  3. Blood Pressure Control – In some cases, the cholesterol can be lowered enough to eliminate the need for blood pressure medications. For people with really high blood pressure, it can help sustain a more manageable blood pressure level.

  4. Energy and Flexibility – If exercise has not been part of a lifestyle, the body loses energy and can feel stiff and achy. Moderate walking will stimulate the body, and if the exercise is consistent, the body will begin to feel more and more energetic naturally. Also, rigidity and stiffness can reduce drastically as you consistently get moving.

  5. Sleep Issues – Whether the trouble is falling asleep or staying asleep, moderate exercise can help. As the exercise increases blood flow and circulation and relaxes the mind, then your body will follow suit, resulting in improved sleeping patterns.

These benefits are true at any age. In seniors, 150 minutes a week of even modest exercise can reduce the average risk of death by 30%.

Take some time to develop new exercise habits and journal about it. Writing down the walking time and steps taken while also keeping track of the mental and physical benefits noticed can create a visual timeline that shows how beneficial it is.


 

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Wed, 20 Mar 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/march/top-5-benefits-of-moderate-walking/
SYNERGY HomeCare Magazine Spring 2019 Puzzle Keys - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/march/synergy-homecare-magazine-spring-2019-puzzle-keys/Check here for the answer keys soon!]]>Wed, 13 Mar 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/march/synergy-homecare-magazine-spring-2019-puzzle-keys/Adult Coloring and Benefits of Art Therapy - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/march/adult-coloring-and-benefits-of-art-therapy/

The American Art Therapy Association defines art therapy as a mental health profession in which clients, facilitated by the art therapist, use art media, the creative process, and the resulting artwork to do the following:

  • Explore their feelings
  • Reconcile emotional conflicts
  • Foster self-awareness
  • Manage behavior and addictions
  • Develop social skills
  • Improve reality orientation
  • Reduce anxiety
  • Increase self-esteem

From this definition, we can see that art therapy is intended to be used by professionals and their clients, working together to resolve and overcome different challenges. These are significant benefits that people can receive from Art Therapy. Whether your art therapy is structured and lead by a therapist or caregiver or used on a more basic and personal level the benefits are exciting.

Adult Coloring Benefits

In today’s world, we don’t see kids coloring as much as we do adults. Adult coloring is a major trend and people are loving it for a lot of different reasons. It helps adults feel better in a lot of different ways. For seniors, the benefits that come from adult coloring can be a game-changer in terms of quality of life. Let’s talk about what kind of benefits adults are seeing from simply spending time coloring.

Adult coloring books are not the type of coloring books you see for children. The paper is a higher-quality with a larger selection of themes. The images are positive and relaxing, encouraging and uplifting, and entrancing. While coloring, adults can experience a meditative state, achieve mindfulness by focusing on the present, relief from stress and anxiety, and an uplift in positive attitudes. While people often spend their mind energy on something that has happened in the past, or overthinking the future, adult coloring can help them stay in the present and more fully enjoy it.

Unplug From The World

Aside from mental health benefits, adult coloring has given people a fun way to disconnect from technology and be present in their own moment. This allows people to open up creatively, feel the joy of creating, and be inspired to create more.

Physical Benefits

Some people have claimed that adult coloring helps them divert focus away from physical pain. They have said that for a brief period of time they were able to spend time and attention on the present moment instead of “with” body pain. This is a significant tool for seniors that struggle with aches and pains that are not easily remedied. It may also be beneficial for people recovering from injury, surgery or living with chronic conditions.

Bonding

Not sure what to get grandma for her birthday? Buy her a nostalgic coloring book or a relaxing mandala book and sit with her. Color together and be present together. Share your coloring pages with each other. What a great moment for you and for her. You can get some books for your own children and bring them along to visit grandma – get the kids involved in creativity and peace where loved ones can enjoy them also.

Adult coloring may not seem to be something that aging adults would be interested in originally, but surprise them – they might be surprised by how much they enjoy it. Studies and personal anecdotes are pointing toward beautiful benefits of art therapy.

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Mon, 04 Mar 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/march/adult-coloring-and-benefits-of-art-therapy/
Celebrate American Heart Month - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/february/celebrate-american-heart-month/February is traditionally known to be the romantic month. The month for lovers, flowers, and chocolates. It seems very fitting that it is also American Heart Month. Take your time being romantic, but don’t forget to show a little love to your heart.

In 1963 American Heart Month began. It was a celebration created to raise awareness of heart disease and to encourage people to fight against it. “Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States. Every year, 1 in 4 deaths are caused by heart disease.”  It’s important to understand that heart disease can also be prevented!

How Is American Heart Month Celebrated?

Healthcare professionals and hospitals use this month to raise awareness of what heart disease is and how to prevent it. In their communities, different health systems wear red in unity. They also hold annual heart screenings with no charge to the patients and they host awareness and educational events where people can learn about heart disease and what steps they can take to prevent it. This is a great way for healthcare professionals to unite and get involved with the community for a great cause.

You Don’t Have To Be A Health Professional To Celebrate And Raise Awareness

Often people have been impacted by heart disease through a friend or family member and like to get involved in efforts, especially during the month of February. If you want to get involved and help your community in your own way, there are a lot of things you can do. Here are a few ideas:

  • Post about heart disease awareness and ways to prevent it on social media.
  • Make healthy heart-shaped cookies, package them with the recipe, and pass them out at a community event.
  • Host a really fun event for your age group. Serve only healthy foods and drinks and spend some time talking about why it’s so important to understand heart disease and how it can be prevented.
  • Hold a class in the community and teach how to prepare a healthy meal.

You don’t have even go out into the community to raise awareness. Start in your home or office.

  • Educate yourself about heart disease prevention so that you can start with yourself and your family and then educate others.
  • Get rid of salt and use other spices for your foods in your house.
  • Replace cooked vegetables with fresh ones for your meals.
  • Encourage your co-workers to walk around the block with you during a break.
  • Remind each other to stand up throughout the day and move a little more.

You don’t have to do anything big to impact awareness and show your enthusiasm for people to stay healthy. It can be done simply by the way that you live and take care of yourself. People notice what others do and how they feel, and they mimic it in people that are happy and healthy. Be the change and share your story with others.

Throughout February, we invite you to celebrate life by raising awareness of heart disease in your own way. Whether you promote it on Facebook, make a meal for your family and talk about it, or go out and volunteer in the community, remember that you are helping make a difference and giving more people an opportunity to make better choices for themselves. And of course… we’d love to hear what you do and celebrate your efforts with you. Please share on our today!


 

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Wed, 13 Feb 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/february/celebrate-american-heart-month/
Aging: How To Keep Your Sleep Healthy - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/january/aging-how-to-keep-your-sleep-healthy/Many things change as we age. Family structures changes, friendships change, our bodies change, and so do our minds. Sometimes the changes make life better, and sometimes they bring more challenges. For seniors, the changes that happen can be frustrating and difficult to deal with. One area that many struggle with is getting good sleep. To understand how to get good sleep, it’s important to understand what good sleep looks like.

What Is The “Right” Amount Of Sleep?

There really is no “right” amount of sleep. The amount of sleep you need is unique to you and what your body is going through. For adults, the most common answer you hear to that question is “between 7 to 9 hours”, but many seniors will sleep less hours and wake up feeling refreshed. Also, if your body has been fighting illness, it may take more sleep to feel refreshed. Listen to your body and try to set yourself on a schedule. If your body is on a routine, it is easier to wake up and fall asleep.

Develop Good Sleep Habits

Sleeping is sleeping, yes. But there are things you can do before you lay down so that your body (and mind) have an easier time falling asleep and staying asleep.

  • Avoid napping during the day – Your body can get thrown off by day naps, so avoid them if you can and help your body get a full night’s rest.
  • No phones in the bedroom – If you do want your phone in the bedroom, turn your notifications off and move your phone out of reach. Phones can be a distraction and keep you from falling asleep.
  • Take a bath – A warm bath before bed can calm your body and ease your mind. Slow down your pace and relax before you get into bed.
  • No drinks before bed – Limit your fluid intake before bed. This will keep you from waking up all night for bathroom breaks.

Other Things To Consider

If you are struggling with sleep issues, you may want to check the side effects of any medications. Some can cause sleep disturbances or boosts in energy and can make falling or staying asleep difficult. If you aren’t very active during the day, your body may not feel tired by bedtime. Get your body moving during the day with exercise and outside activities – this is a great way to wear your body out and get it ready for sleep before it is time to go to bed.

Also, remember to eat well. A poor diet or a hungry stomach are not easy to forget about while you are trying to sleep. Your body is changing and has different needs than it is accustomed to. Though it may be frustrating trying to figure out what it needs and how to take care of it properly, there are things you can do to help yourself out. If you have been trying these strategies and are struggling still with sleep, it is a good idea to talk to your doctor. As we age there can be several issues that we don’t understand or expect, so don’t hesitate to speak with someone for advice and recommendations.


 

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Tue, 29 Jan 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/january/aging-how-to-keep-your-sleep-healthy/
Top 5 Tips To Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/january/top-5-tips-to-keep-your-new-year-s-resolutions/Every new year, people across the world seem to play a similar monologue about setting New Year’s Resolutions and goals. Some people are extremely excited and motivated to set new goals and start a new life in the new year. Others keep away from setting resolutions all together because of the fear of not completing another years’ worth of goals.

It can be very discouraging to set goals and not complete them. It keeps people from working toward a better life, a better attitude, and a happier healthier quality of life. But there ARE things you can do to help yourself set reasonable goals and reach them every new year. Here are five tips for successful goal resolution this year.  

  1. Start Small – People are often tempted to change so much at once that they don’t actually change anything. When your goals are too drastic, you are bound to be disappointed. Start with smaller goals and work on achieving those in incremental steps throughout the year! It will be easier to reach these small milestones and you may end up meeting your entire goal during the course of the year.

  2. Watch Your Aim – Aiming too high is another reason people fail to meet their goals. Keep your goals realistic and achievable. You cannot get a bachelor’s degree in one year – but you can complete one year of school in one year.

  3. Create A Dream Board – It doesn’t have to be a “dream board” specifically. It could be a scrapbook or notes in your day planner. The important part is to write it down. Write down what your goals are, what your timeframe looks like for each one, and how you plan on achieving that goal. Set reminders on your phone and keep the goal alive and in front of you.

  4. Ask For Support – Tell your family and friends. Even if you have tried before and it didn’t work. Don’t give up. Let your loved ones know that just because you tripped up before does not mean that this is not important. Ask for help remembering your goals and advice on how to accomplish them this year. Let them know that THIS YEAR is YOUR YEAR!

  5. Reward Yourself – There is nothing wrong with giving yourself a little something meaningful when you meet a milestone. Do not be afraid to make yourself happy for working so hard. Pick out some rewards at the beginning of the year and have them ready to work for. It’s always easy to complete a task when you know that there is something desirable at the end!

Whether you love them or hate them, setting New Year’s Resolutions is a great way to work toward the things that you want. After you set the goals, you may, but slipping up on a goal you are working toward is so much better than never starting toward the goal. Have an amazing 2019. Follow your dreams and don’t forget to treat yourself when you do!


 

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Tue, 22 Jan 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/january/top-5-tips-to-keep-your-new-year-s-resolutions/
SYNERGY HomeCare Magazine Puzzle Answers Winter 2019 - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/january/synergy-homecare-magazine-puzzle-answers-winter-2019/Here are the puzzle answers for the Winter 2019 issue of SYNERGY HomeCare Magazine

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Wed, 02 Jan 2019 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2019/january/synergy-homecare-magazine-puzzle-answers-winter-2019/
Guest Blog: In the Know About Diabetes - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2018/november/guest-blog-in-the-know-about-diabetes/

In America, around over the age of 65 have diabetes -- many of these people are undiagnosed. People of all ages can be diagnosed with diabetes, however, those diagnosed with type 1 diabetes are usually born with it. Type 2 diabetes is often developed over time due to a number of risk factors and lifestyle habits. Having a family history of diabetes, developing during pregnancy, being overweight or obese, and not being physically active are a few of the major factors that can lead to type 2 diabetes. Overall, 30 million Americans have some form of the disease, with type 2 diabetes being the more common diagnosis.

Because symptoms may be nonexistent or so mild that they’re ignored, doctors sometimes have trouble when deciding if a patient has prediabetes or diabetes. If doctors believe their patient is at risk of diabetes, they may conduct . The tests conducted by physicians most often measure the levels of blood glucose in the body, a tell-tale sign of diabetes. One of these exams is done when the patient has fasted for eight hours, one is done after they’ve fasted for eight hours and two hours after they’ve consumed a glucose-containing beverage, and the last one is a random plasma glucose test without regard for the last meal the patient has consumed.

Along with the daily hardships a diabetic might face, diabetes-related complications can arise. For example, diabetics are recommended to receive an annual flu shot because illnesses like the flu can make diabetes harder to manage. Any illness that results in a fever, throwing up, or diarrhea can make controlling blood glucose levels a more difficult task.

Other complications that diabetics may face are various and . High blood glucose levels can lead to damage in the blood vessels throughout the entire body. This can also result in damage to the nerves that control your heart and blood vessels. This damage can result in heart disease and stroke. Diabetic retinopathy affects the blood vessels in the eye’s retina. High blood sugar is directly related to damage to blood vessels in the retina, which can lead to eye-related health problems such as glaucoma, cataracts, and diabetic macular edema.

Lastly, diabetes medication can have many side effects. Some of these medications, such as certain SGLT2 inhibitors, have been aside from common ones that usually fade with time. Review the medical risks of any diabetes medications you are taking with your physician, and do not be afraid to discuss alternative medications if you are uncomfortable with any side effects associated with your current prescription.

Maintaining a healthy weight through proper diet and exercise can decrease the risk of type 2 diabetes, or help to manage it if you’ve already been diagnosed. A healthy diet would include low-fat, nutrient-rich foods that include whole grain bread and cereals, fruits, vegetables, dairy products, and lean proteins. Making sure that portion sizes are kept smaller can also help decrease the risk of developing diabetes.

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with diabetes, talk to your doctor about your risk for any diabetes-related complications. Together you and your doctor can create a unique treatment plan to avoid any negative health complications.


 

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Tue, 27 Nov 2018 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2018/november/guest-blog-in-the-know-about-diabetes/
Don’t Miss Senior Letters to Vets Events in Your Area - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2018/november/don-t-miss-senior-letters-to-vets-events-in-your-area/SYNERGY Homecare is excited to introduce “Senior Letters To Vets.” This new event serves a couple of significant purposes and is very important to SYNERGY Homecare. It is such an honor to take a few minutes and give thanks and appreciation to the men and women who courageously serve our country. Seniors around the country benefit from being able to share and express their gratitude to our veterans. We invite you to join us in a “Senior Letter to Vets” event happening in your area.

SYNERGY Homecare is a workplace and community of people that serve and care. We love that many of our owners are current and former members of the military and we pride ourselves in caring for our veterans who deserve extra time and attention. Our veterans vary in age as well as physical and psychological well-being. Our staff is devoted to helping improve the quality of life for our clients and to help them get the resources that they need, including financial resources that they have earned that can help pay for the service and care they receive in their own homes.

We know that your words can make a difference, lift a spirit, create an experience and rekindle a sense of pride in the service veterans in your community have offered.

Many veterans struggle with memory problems like Alzheimer’s and Dementia. For them, writing and reading can help improve memory, provide them an opportunity to remember feelings of gratitude and an outlet to express emotion. Emotions can be difficult territory for some of our seniors who often feel confused and angry. The “Senior Letters To Vets” is a positive approach to feelings of gratitude that our seniors can write down and truly feel at the same time, benefitting both the senior and the veteran.

Seniors often struggle with loneliness and withdrawal. Social events are not a common part of all of our seniors’ lives so for them to be able to write to someone and share their day-to-day activities and thoughts can be a huge benefit. We recognize that for seniors, feeling a connection to other people can change the course of their health and overall quality of life, and although the purpose of this event is to provide support and encouragement to our veterans, we can see the mutual benefits from this event.

For the veterans who receive the letters, we hope this brings them feelings of encouragement, support, and friendship. Many deployed veterans don’t receive a lot of contact outside of the military and we want these letters to be a gift that helps uplift and motivate. These letters can build friendships and create a connection and bond that many veterans miss while they are away. We want to give our vets a piece of home and a reminder of how much their service is valued.

“Senior Letters to Vets” offers many benefits to many different lives. While SYNERGY Homecare works to serve and care for the people in our communities, we always want to be mindful of the veterans that have served and continue to serve and care for our country and our home. We are grateful to be able to host such an incredible event and look forward to it every year. We encourage all of our friends and neighbors to participate in this event with us and download the “Senior Letters to Vets” letterhead today.

Contact your local office to find out when they are hosting a “Senior Letter to Vets” event in your area or to get free “Senior Letters to Vets” stationary. Call 877-432-2692 for more information.


 

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Mon, 05 Nov 2018 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2018/november/don-t-miss-senior-letters-to-vets-events-in-your-area/
Ten Ways To Help Disabled Children Have Fun On Halloween - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2018/october/ten-ways-to-help-disabled-children-have-fun-on-halloween/

Even though most children enjoy Halloween, the holiday can be a struggle for many kids. Children with physical and mental disabilities are often more affected by the holiday than other children. Kids with physical disabilities are usually slowed down by impairments and can’t keep up with the other children. Kids with mental disabilities may not understand the holiday and what is happening. But there are many different ways you can help a child with a disability have a fun and safe Halloween.

Sometimes you have to think outside of the box. An excellent resource for parents during the holidays is in-home care. Not only can in-home services help relieve you of added stress during the holidays, but they can also offer some helpful tips and suggestions that have come from experience. Here are ten ways you can help your disabled child enjoy the season and have a Happy Halloween!

  1. Avoid Crowds But Still Have A Good Time – Crowds aren’t everybody’s favorite or ideal situation. For kids with special needs, crowds are loud and overwhelming. Noisy, unfamiliar events can cause melt-downs and other major behavioral problems that can be difficult for families to handle. Here are some alternative ideas:
    1. Instead of participating in Trunk-Or-Treats or other heavy traffic trick-or-treating areas, go trick-or-treating at less busy areas of your town or start a little bit earlier than the rest of the kids.
    2. Search for Sensory Friendly events. If your location doesn’t have them, think about starting your own and invite other special needs kids along.
    3. Avoid the crowds and instead stay home and watch fun Halloween movies and make Halloween themed desserts.
    4. Help your child get into the spirit of Halloween by passing out the candy to kids from home; this will help your child get some social time in without overwhelming them.
  2. Try Not To Fit All Events Into A Short Amount Of Time – Too many events, or events that are long, can affect can be incredibly overwhelming for special needs children. Think about ways you can enjoy the holiday without over stimulating them.
    1. Avoid haunted houses and instead visit corn mazes or hayrides. For kids that are overstimulated easy, taking them to visit a Halloween store might be a better option. Go at a less busy time of day to avoid crowds.
    2. Don’t make plans to attend any Halloween parties. If your child seems excited and ready to interact, take them to the party early and give yourself time to leave early in case the party becomes too much for your child to stand.

  1. Be Patient With Your Child And Yourself – Sometimes special needs children won’t enjoy dressing up and participating in the event. Be patient with them and come up with alternative costume options or start new traditions that are more comfortable for your child.
    1. As much as you want them to participate, remember that Halloween may not be the most fun event for them. Keep your child comfortable by allowing them to have a voice and tell you what they like or don’t like.
    2. Try to find good ways to connect with your child. If something about the event might spark some interest for a short amount of time, it might be easier for you to enjoy the event with them.
    3. It doesn’t all have to go the way you think it does. Having a special needs child doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy the holiday, you just have to come up with different ways to enjoy it with your child in a way that is comfortable to them.

Don’t forget that there is additional support for you. There are resources for special needs children and in-home help that can help you establish a new tradition, incorporate new ideas, and understand how your child is thinking. Remember to take time for yourself and don’t push yourself to host the party, take care of the kids, manage a holiday event and end up not enjoying your holiday because you are overwhelmed. Remember to have a fun and safe Halloween for both you and your child. Create memories that will last for both of you.

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Tue, 30 Oct 2018 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2018/october/ten-ways-to-help-disabled-children-have-fun-on-halloween/
In-Home Care for Parents with Special Needs Children - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2018/october/in-home-care-for-parents-with-special-needs-children/

Parenting is not the easiest task in the world, but it definitely is rewarding. As parents, we spend most of our time trying to take care of our children. Feeding and bathing them, dropping off and picking up from school, and helping with homework are just a handful of tasks that parents do on a daily basis. The list of tasks is endless, and as the laundry is finished, dinner is made, and dishes cleaned up each night, parents are already exhausted thinking about the next day.

When you are parenting a special needs child the daily list of tasks change and often increases. There are more doctor visits, therapy appointments, and health problems that brings constant worry and stress. Many parents do not realize that they can ask for help and support from outside services, but they can! 

In-home care is an option for parents who need an extra hand or respite during emotional and physically overwhelming times. Taking care of a child with special needs can quickly take its toll on a parent who does not have time for themselves. In-come care for children with disabilities also allows parents to better focus on other children and family members as well as providing extra time and help to complete tasks that need to get done.

What Does In-Home Care Offer To Parents Of Children With Special Needs?

In-home care providers are available for you during your time of need. They are not nurses and do not perform medical services, but they do provide assistance that can help parents ease tension and stress that can be damaging to their own health. To keep caregivers of children with special needs healthy, in-home caregivers can provide support so that caregivers do not fall ill themselves and maintain the ability physically and mentally to care for their children.

In-home Services Can Include:

  • Respite Care – Respite care isn’t just for the gravely ill. In-home care providers can come into your home for a scheduled amount of time and allow parents to take some time to themselves or other family members. Parents can spend some time on a hobby, get a massage, or go grocery shopping. The point is to give the permanent caregiver a break so that they can continue to support their loved ones with special needs.
  • Housekeeping – In-home providers provide light-housekeeping services. They can offer help with laundry, cleaning dishes, vacuuming, dusting, and more.
  • Errand Running – Having another hand that can run errands is immensely beneficial to parents of children with special needs. No need to pack up the kids to pick up prescriptions at the pharmacy or groceries for dinner, in-home care providers can do that!

Asking for help isn’t always easy. Especially when you are trying to be a good parent and take care of all your many responsibilities, but taking care of your family includes taking care of yourself. If you are a parent of a child with special needs, remember help will be there when you ask for it. Be honest about what your needs are and ask. Some insurance companies will help cover the cost of in-home services depending on the type of disability of the child. You don’t have to struggle to keep up with the demands of parenthood. If you need help, just ask. To schedule a free in-home assessment and discuss options call SYNERGY HomeCare today!


 

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Wed, 17 Oct 2018 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2018/october/in-home-care-for-parents-with-special-needs-children/
SYNERGY HomeCare Magazine Fall 2018 Puzzle Answers - caterinca.infohttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2018/october/synergy-homecare-magazine-fall-2018-puzzle-answers/

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Tue, 16 Oct 2018 00:00:00 GMThttp://caterinca.info/blog/posts/2018/october/synergy-homecare-magazine-fall-2018-puzzle-answers/