It’s no problem at all for us to get plenty of exercise while we’re young; physical activity is just a natural part of our hectic, daily lives. As we grow older, however, it’s not uncommon for the pace of life to slow down, sometimes quite dramatically; and there are many people who assume that with aging comes a reduced need for physical activity, or maybe even that exercise for seniors could be dangerous.
The good news, however, is that these assumptions are completely false. Studies have shown that routine exercise for seniors offers both physical and psychological benefits in older adults, and that even just a small amount of exercise can go a long way. The Office of Aging in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services shares that an exercise plan can:
Lower the level of disability in older adults
Improve … Read More »
A body at rest remains at rest. If exercise hasn’t been a regular part of someone’s everyday routine, there are years of ingrained behavior that need to be overcome when attempting to make activity a part of a senior’s daily life. Making regular activity a part of an older person’s routine will make it easier for him or her to remember to exercise. Incorporate exercise at home into a daily routine for seniors to meet goals, keeping these tips in mind:
For someone with frailty, simply getting up and down out of a chair unassisted utilizes muscles that will benefit from movement.
First focus on individual goals, concerns, and any barriers standing in the way of exercise.
After enlisting the recommendations of the senior’s physician, even frail seniors should be able to exercise at home, following a plan to help them improve strength … Read More »
Getting into a routine exercise regimen is challenging at any age. Working out is tiring. We don’t want to invest the time. We’re feeling sore from yesterday’s exercising. We’ve all made excuses like these for not exercising; but frailty and advanced age make it even more difficult to stick to an exercise plan and maintain senior fitness.
Hired Hands Homecare wants to help seniors remain active with tips to overcome the following common senior fitness roadblocks:
Self-confidence: It’s normal for older adults to feel overwhelmed with the idea of meeting exercise goals. It can help to begin slowly with exercises that are easily accomplished and advance gradually; and, motivate the senior with frequent encouragement.
Attitude: Attitude is everything when it comes to physical fitness. If approached negatively, it will be much harder to maintain an effective exercise regimen. Choose activities that will be … Read More »
The benefits of exercise don’t diminish as we age, and it’s incredibly important for older adults to maintain as active a lifestyle as possible. Even those who are bedridden or wheelchair-bound have a full range of options available to strengthen, improve resistance and flexibility.
The first step is always to check with the physician to get a recommendation on the best exercises for seniors that fit with your loved one’s activity level and medical history. Initially, exercising even for as little as a few minutes a day, repeated several times throughout the day, can greatly enhance the senior’s health and wellbeing.
Following are several examples of the best exercises for seniors:
Aerobic Exercises: If whole body movements aren’t possible, exercises from a seated position are available to build cardio strength. When possible, good options include:
Swimming or water aerobics
Resistance Exercises: To build and … Read More »
Take a moment to close your eyes and picture yourself like this: You’ve spent most of your life taking care of and assisting others – as a mother or father, in your career, through volunteering in your community, and as a grandparent. After all those years of living independently and being in control of your life’s decisions, you’ve suddenly aged to the point that now you are the one in need of assistance with bathing and other care tasks. Imagine the sense of loss, vulnerability, and fear.
If you’re taking care of a senior loved one, it can help to put yourself in his or her shoes when facing challenges related to helping the person with personal care tasks. The struggles your older loved one is feeling are real, and a little empathy and patience can go a long way towards … Read More »
It’s not an aspect of elderly personal care that’s as commonly discussed as other tasks, but is crucial to keeping seniors healthy nonetheless. Aging skin care issues can cause a wide variety of distress for seniors, including discomfort, bruising, dryness, itching, and more.
The home care professionals at Hired Hands Homecare work hard to keep older adults safe and healthy from head to toe, and that includes healthy skin. We’ve outlined below some of the more common skin difficulties in aging, and some suggestions to help.
According to Medscape, an overwhelming majority of adults over age 65 are troubled by dry, flaky, itchy skin, which results from a reduction in sweat and oil glands.
How to help:
The senior should take less frequent showers or baths, using warm (not hot) water, gently dry the skin, and apply moisturizer
See if “dry bath” products work … Read More »
How could something that’s so comforting and soothing, like a nice, warm bath, be one of the biggest dangers to older adults? The truth is, combining smooth surfaces, slippery soap and hot water create the perfect storm for a fall danger – one of the most severe risks to aging adults.
January is designated as National Bath Safety Month, and it’s a great chance for both education and assessment to ensure the utmost bathroom safety for your senior loved ones.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission reports that about 370 people of all ages suffer bathtub or shower-related injuries each day in the United States. Because most falls in the house take place in the bathroom, AARP recommends taking the following precautions:
Install grab bars for the toilet, shower, and bathtub
Install non-skid tile or use non-skid bath mats
Set the temperature of the home’s hot … Read More »
What feels finer than sinking into a warm, relaxing bath at the conclusion of a long, busy day? While most of us relish the luxurious comfort that bathtime brings, for seniors, especially those struggling with the challenges of dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, it’s certainly not blissful.
For many different reasons, such as memory issues, feelings of vulnerability, or physical distress from the pressure or temperature of the water, helping a senior with the personal care tasks of bathing can feel a lot more like entering a battleground.
Hired Hands Homecare of California wants to help restore the joy of bathtime for both the senior and his or her caregiver with these ideas:
Ensure safety. Keeping the bath area free from hazards is critical. Make certain that:
Grab bars and mats that are slip-resistant are strategically placed in and around the tub
The water temperature is … Read More »
Mom and Dad have always been there, from your first breath to your first step to your first date, and have remained your biggest cheerleaders well into adulthood. But lately, there’s been a subtle shift in the relationship, as they begin to have more needs themselves due to the effects of aging. Of course you want to be there for them; and you’re far from alone.
National studies report that a little over one out of every four households (29 percent) is involved in providing care for a chronically ill, disabled or aged family member or friend. Since the population of people over 65 years is expected to increase at a 2.3 percent rate, the need for parent care solutions increases each year.
Providing home care for a parent, as fulfilling as it certainly can be, can result in a major upheaval … Read More »
The Holidays can be an especially difficult time for families. It is also a time that our Team can band together, and do some of our most important work. Below is a letter we just received, that truly honors the importance of not only What we do, but How we go upon it.
December 7, 2016
Staff at Hired Hands Homecare
10 Commercial BLVD, Ste 102
Novato, CA 94949
Dear Friends at Hired Hands,
Thank you so much for honoring the life of Rody with the planting of a tree in his name. That is a lovely way to be remembered, and will be appreciated by our family.
Each day I think of the fine people who were involved in Rody’s care. I think of the consistent and constant arrivals with a smile and a good morning … Read More »
While the holiday season is usually thought of as a joyous time, full of visiting loved ones and buying gifts, it’s important to remember that holidays for seniors can be anything but merry and bright. A combination of lost loved ones, memories of holidays past, health problems and more can impact seniors with feelings of loneliness and sadness.
At Hired Hands Homecare, we care deeply about helping seniors feel included in the festivities and to enjoy the holiday season to the fullest. These tips can help the whole family experience the joy and wonder of the holiday season together:
Create a cookbook with recipes from all family members. Compile all the recipes, and then make copies of your new “family cookbook.”
Take a drive to look at holiday lights. Perhaps you can visit an old neighborhood that your senior family member has memories … Read More »
The holidays are full of festivities, parties, gatherings, and celebrations. But, for an elderly loved one, holiday outings require a little advance planning. Follow these pointers from Hired Hands Homecare in an effort to enjoy fun and relaxed outings with loved ones of all ages this season.
Before leaving the home, consider:
The amount of walking involved, and if there is parking nearby
Whether the destination is flat or has hills or stairs to climb
If there is wheelchair access (if appropriate)
Whether there is cover and shade
Whether there are toilet facilities
Whether there are chairs or benches available in case the senior needs a rest
Be certain to be prepared for a wide range of possibilities:
Have all the medicines needed and take an extra supply, just in case the outing lasts longer or takes an unexpected turn
Have appropriate clothing as well as sun and rain protection
Bring … Read More »
New Year’s resolutions: we love to make them, and can’t help but break them. Perhaps you’ve been energized to eat better, lose those stubborn five pounds, quit a bad habit, or exercise more; but life has a way of interfering with our best intentions, and this is especially true for family members providing senior care for a loved one.
To make a real difference in quality of life for both yourself and the senior for whom you provide care, and to discover a New Year’s resolution you’ll actually want to adhere to in the months and years to come, try one of these suggestions, courtesy of Hired Hands Homecare:
Be thankful – to yourself. Recognize the tremendous selflessness required in caring for another, and make a point to treat yourself to regular, small rewards as a thank-you: a favorite treat from the … Read More »
In our previous blog post, we shared with you just a few of the many benefits of senior home care. In addition to those more tangible positives, being at home just feels best. Our memories have been made here, and it’s where we feel most comfortable and can be ourselves. Being at home also enhances independence for seniors, providing opportunities to make personal decisions throughout the day: what meals to eat and when to eat them, whether to read, take a walk, or invite a friend in to visit, when and where to rest and sleep, etc.
Once you’ve decided to look into home care options in California, the next step is choosing the best agency for your senior loved one. This can be quite an overwhelming step, however. You may find many in-home care options in your area, but how … Read More »
It’s a well-known fact: the vast majority of seniors dream of aging in place over an eventual move to a nursing home or assisted living facility. Who wouldn’t want to remain in the comfort of their own home throughout aging? Aging at home allows seniors an unparalleled sense of safety and security, in the home and community that are familiar. In order for this dream to become a reality, however, additional assistance at home might become necessary. Professional home care agencies, like Hired Hands Homecare, provide affordable solutions.
Here are 10 ways that home care truly makes a difference in a senior’s life:
Generally, in-home care leads to a higher satisfaction with life.
Professional home care allows dignity, independence and comfort for a senior.
Home care promotes healing. Studies have shown that patients heal more quickly at home versus in a hospital or nursing … Read More »
Chronic coughing. Shortness of breath. Wheezing. Think it might be an asthma attack? Before reaching for the inhaler or those over-the-counter cough drops, however, it might be time to consider if another culprit – COPD – could be a factor. As many as 12 million Americans are currently living with COPD (and another 12 million who are likely to have the disease but have not been diagnosed), so it’s important to figure out the real cause behind the cough.
Here are some of the major differences between asthma and COPD:
Environmental factors such as cigarette smoke, dust, and pet hair can trigger asthmatic symptoms like coughing and shortness of breath.
Usually displays in patients in childhood, often by age 5.
Thought to be caused by genetics.
Environmental triggers can exacerbate symptoms like coughing and difficulty breathing, but these symptoms are often present in a milder … Read More »
Sometimes, being diagnosed after struggling with debilitating symptoms can be a relief. Now, the condition has a name, and there’s a plan to treat it! This is certainly true with COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). If your senior loved one has been struggling through symptoms such as chronic coughing, wheezing, and fatigue, receiving a diagnosis of COPD could be the first step needed to improve her quality of life.
Here’s what you can expect from the doctor in determining if COPD is the culprit:
Assessment of the senior’s health and environment, to include smoking, exposure to pollutants, symptoms, and family health history
Testing such as spirometry (breathing into a machine to check lung functioning), x-rays and blood work
Creation of a treatment plan
COPD symptoms can vary from person to person, and as a result, treatment plans can differ as well. Here are some of … Read More »
Cindy and Jake of Hired Hands Sonoma
office recently attended Vineyard Commons Health Fair. Hired Hands Homecare had a table with health information and a 30 minute presentation on Super Foods was given by Cindy in the Commons Lounge.
Hired Hands also had a Super Foods gift basket to raffle for the residents there. It was a great event for the residents and was well attended.
Congrats to the winner of the gift basket!
Sonoma’s September Employee of the Month
Our latest Employee of the Month is Zufan Almedom! Zufan began working for Hired Hands Homecare in December of 2015. Zufan brings to the table years of CNA experience, a positive attitude and a willingness to jump in and help when needed. Thanks Zufan!!
“I called the house to check in and spoke with Katherine. She told me Zufan has been great with her husband and she asked that we send Zufan back to cover nights whenever she can. She’s really proactive!”
During our conversation, Becky told me that Zufan and the staff have been doing a wonderful job and Becky is glad we have her on their weekly team!
I called Sharon to check in, introduce myself and see how Zufan had done today. Sharon told me, “Zufan was wonderful! She helped Lee with a bed … Read More »
Looking Great and Having Fun! A great pic of Kirsten and Chris (AKA the King and Queen of Hearts!) representing at today’s Marin Senior Information Fair.
This year’s theme was “Thru the Looking Glass”, and the King and Queen of Hearts enjoyed holding court with all our community partners, providing great information and entertainment for Seniors and their families! Yes, it really does take a village!
And, an interesting fact to note… This was our TWENTY-SECOND consecutive Marin Senior Info Fair! So very nice to see so many familiar faces, and to get out in front of the community we’re so proud to serve!
…but not of the crimes you think you committed.
You think you’re guilty of not spending enough time with your loved ones. That you’re guilty of failing them because you are considering part-time in-home care or a full-time skilled nursing facility.
No. Here’s what you are probably guilty of instead:
Working too hard
Neglecting your own emotional and physical health
Judging yourself too harshly
Although immensely rewarding, caregiving for a cherished family member is one of the hardest things you will ever do, and the role of caregiver often comes at the busiest stage of one’s life. Caregivers in California often have full-time jobs on top of caregiving, plus children and spouses who need attention, too.
How do I know if I’m working too hard? The first thing you need to do is admit that you’re working too hard. Pull out a sheet of paper and make … Read More »
Here is Linda!
Linda Gasaway has been chosen as the Employee of the month for September.
She has been with Hired Hands Homecare a little over 3 years. Linda has been a rock star go-to caregiver for those hard to staff 3 hour shifts.
We can always rely on Linda to show up and do an outstanding job. Her clients love her and have only high praise feedback about her job performance.
Most of us are juggling a number of balls at any given time, and for caregivers, it often feels like they’re juggling knives and flaming swords on top of it. It’s common to feel overburdened and guilty when you’re a caregiver for a loved one, whether that person is your spouse or your parent.
Guilt can manifest in many ways. Maybe you feel like you’re spending too little time with your loved one. You may feel guilty about considering an assisted living facility for your loved one. You might feel guilty when your loved one’s dementia-fueled behaviors caused you to snap. Or you could feel guilty about neglecting your own children’s needs in order to care for your senior loved one.
The most important things to remember are: You are doing the best you can, and it’s okay to seek help.
Let’s take … Read More »
Gayle has been with Hired Hands since July 2012 and her favorite caregiver right now is Mary Martel. Gayle never had children or held an occupation. She and her late husband used to love hosting parties with friends and entertaining guests at their home in Santa Rosa. Gayle enjoys watching Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune; her favorite activities include walking in her neighborhood on nice days, conversing / reminiscing with her caregivers and weekly visits to the hair salon.
When Phyllis (Director of Santa Rosa office) and Jake (Santa Rosa Office Manager) arrived with cake and flowers, Gayle told them, “I’m so fortunate to have such wonderful people in my life. I am truly blessed!”
We face a number of critical crossroads in life, in which our decisions will have a long-reaching impact. Our career. Whether (and whom) to marry. Whether to have children. And once we’ve reached senior status, another major decision looms: should we consider a move to an assisted living facility or nursing home to ensure we have the care needed throughout the aging process, or is home care in California an option?
As with any crucial decision, it’s important to carefully consider the pros and cons of each choice. Hired Hands Homecare wants to help seniors and their families more clearly understand both options, in order to make the decision with which they’ll be most comfortable.
If you’re in the beginning stages of considering a move for your senior loved one, these questions are important to consider:
Is cost a factor? The U.S. Department … Read More »
Home is where the heart is, and so many seniors’ hearts are set on remaining at home throughout aging, instead of making a move to an assisted living facility or nursing home – close to 90% of them, according to research done by AARP. And who can blame them? The comfort of familiar surroundings, the independence to come and go as you please, the freedom to prepare the meals you want when you want them are all priceless commodities.
But although it sounds like the perfect plan for aging, there are some real concerns to be thought through as well:
Will the senior be safe?
How will he or she get around when driving, or even walking, becomes difficult?
What happens if the senior becomes ill or injured and no one’s nearby to help?
Thankfully, it’s now easier than ever for older adults to stay … Read More »
Assisting a senior you love with personal care needs – tasks like taking a bath, getting dressed, and helping with toilet needs – can be uncomfortable for both the senior and yourself. It requires the senior to set modesty aside and allow herself to be vulnerable. And when Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia is added to the mix, the senior’s feelings of distress may become overwhelming, resulting in an outburst.
The exact trigger behind these outbursts can vary from one person to another, but some of the more common reasons are:
Loss of control. A person’s sense of independence can feel as though it’s slipping away in a number of areas for older adults, and trying to remain in control over the most basic functions becomes even more important.
What can help: Help the senior to feel as much in control … Read More »
Have you tried Googling “Alzheimer’s disease” and attempted to sift through the millions of results that instantly pop up? As wonderful as the age of the Internet is, it can also be overwhelming to try to sort out the true facts from the overabundance of old wives’ tales.
At Hired Hands Homecare, our California dementia care specialists offer the following breakdown of some of the most common myths, and the truths behind them:
Myth: Mom remembers so many stories from when she was growing up, so she certainly can’t have Alzheimer’s disease.
Truth: Alzheimer’s disease affects short-term (more recent) memories first, meaning that those memories of the more distant past can linger much longer as the disease progresses. This explains why someone newly diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease can often remember stories from the past quite clearly. Additionally, someone with Alzheimer’s tends to have … Read More »
Picture how it would feel to wake up in an unfamiliar place, unable to remember how you got there or even what your name is. Complete confusion swiftly turns into fear and anger, and you may find yourself lashing out at the stranger standing beside your bed, speaking to you in a soft voice.
This scenario paints a bleak and sadly accurate picture of an Alzheimer’s patient’s reality. Now imagine standing in front of a person you love, and having that person look at you with no recognition whatsoever. Each day your heart breaks a little bit more, but you push through the pain and go on with your caregiving duties for your loved one with Alzheimer’s.
According to the latest report from Alzheimer’s Association, a whopping 17.7 billion hours of care are provided by family caregivers each year to those with … Read More »
Gina is July’s Caregiver of the Month for Hired Hands Homecare – Santa Rosa! Gina began working for Hired Hands Homecare in May of 2015. She has been reliable, hard working, positive and always stays calm and centered. She is also an extremely talented Caregiver, adept at assisting with all Activities of Daily Living, along with the skills and knowledge required to work with Alzheimer’s and Dementia clients.
“I called Deb to find out how Gina’s first shift had gone. She told me that Gina was great! Deb asked that we send her back whenever Dolores is not available.”
Joanne says she really LOVES Gina! “She’s pleasant and has been cooking up a storm!”
Thank you, Gina, for being AWESOME!!
Being able to get out of the house and go where we want on a whim is a freedom many of us have long enjoyed and may even take for granted. Driving represents much more than just a daily routine; it symbolizes both competence and independence. And, it can be an incredibly hard activity to give up.
The need for sustained concentration and quick reaction time tends to decline as we age, and for someone with Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia, this process accelerates dramatically, making it difficult for loved ones to know when it’s time for the senior to stop driving and find alternate transportation options.
The Warning Signs
Because Alzheimer’s disease has an impact on reasoning skills, your loved one may resist the idea of giving up driving, so it’s often up to family caregivers to determine when the … Read More »
Darlene MacDonald- Darlene has worked for Hired Hands Homecare for over 3 years. Darlene is a very hard worker. She goes above and beyond to get things done.
When Darlene was in her CNA class, she finished at the top of her class and scored a 100% on her final examination.
Darlene is an animal lover. She has two dogs Casey is a Yellow Lab and Sydney is a Chihuahua. She has a guinea pig named Rose that her and her family rescued at a local park and she feeds the local stray cats.
Darlene likes to read, bird watch and take hikes. Darlene’s favorite aspect of care giving is being able to brighten someone’s day and to help them be more independent.
Darlene, THANK YOU for ALL you do!
The Hired Hands Homecare Team~
Caught in ACTION!
I popped into Vintage Sonoma unannounced to do a visit with Julie Slaton’s client. Upon arrival they were in the lobby enjoying popcorn and having a great conversation. Julie was dressed in her Hired Hands Scrub and Badge. She interacted with the staff and client with great professionalism!
The Staff at Vintage Sonoma appreciate Julie’s attentiveness and professional appearance. She is always on time and keeps her client entertained and calm while in the lobby with other residents. They brought us on board to assist client for safety because she has tried multiple times to leave the building. Julie has been successful at keeping client in the building and participating in facility activities.
Julie, THANKS for Shining like a Star!
Melissa W, Homecare Manager
Every Month, we Congratulate a STELLAR Caregiver for how well they go about their job. This Month’s winner is……
Lisea!! Congratulations Lisea, you’re going home with our “Summer in the Fun on the Run” basket. Included are some great essentials to beat the heat like sun glasses and a water canteen, and some other fun items including a $25 visa gift card.
Lisea is halfway through the Hired Hands Inc Mentorship program. Even though she’s just beginning her career at Hired Hands, she is knocking it out of the park! She earned the most points last month by turning paperwork in early every week, and offering a helping hand whenever she could!
Lisea – You’re a Star!
The excuses are too numerous to count, but they all boil down to this: “What’s the point of getting immunizations now that I’m in the later years of life?” For every reason seniors can conjure up NOT to receive their vaccines, there’s a countering response encouraging them to adhere to immunization recommendations. Here are just a few of the top reasons why those over age 60 need to make it a priority to ensure they’re up to date on vaccinations:
For protection of loved ones. In particular, babies under 6 months of age, who are too young to be immunized against illnesses such as whooping cough and the flu, are susceptible to contracting the diseases from family members who aren’t up to date on vaccines.
For travel safety. If one of a senior’s bucket list items includes visiting a foreign country, a … Read More »
Addy is the Employee of the Month for the Santa Rosa Office! With her calm demeanor and a smile that lights up the room, Addy has a way of putting both clients and families at ease during even the most difficult times. She has become one of our most valued Hospice Team members, and has helped ease families and their loved ones through the Hospice experience. As one daughter said “My father loved Addy. Her kindness, gentleness, warmth, and the way she diligently cared for him, put him at absolute ease.”
Pneumonia: it’s one word we never want to hear in relation to our senior loved ones, but unfortunately, seniors are more susceptible to this extremely serious lung infection, for a variety of reasons: a weakened immune system, chronic conditions such as Parkinson’s disease and diabetes that put them at a higher risk, surgeries, and frailty.
Symptoms of pneumonia can include:
Fever and chills
Coughing that produces yellow or green discharge
Shortness of breath
Recovering from a recent cold/flu
With a fatality rate in seniors of between 30% and 40%, pneumonia kills more people worldwide than any other infectious disease. These alarming statistics on their own should prompt all of those over the age of 65 to seek out the pneumonia vaccine, but additionally, the pneumococcus bacterium that causes pneumonia can also cause further problems: ear infections, deadly blood infections, and meningitis.
Not surprisingly, the CDC unequivocally … Read More »
Melonie Timms has been chosen for the Employee of the Month for June 2016. Melonie has so much compassion for her clients. Melonie interacts so well with her clients too. When Melonie and a client are together you can see them both light up. Melonie has a few different clients with very different personalities and she is amazing dealing with them all.
Melonie is an artist as well, she bedazzles all types of shoes. When Melonie isn’t working, she spends her time with her beautiful daughter.
Linda Shaver was chosen for employee of the month of April. Linda is a perfect example of dedicated caregiver. She takes care of a client that be challenging at times, but she still goes above and beyond. Linda never says no when we need her to cover extra shifts with her client, she’s even willing run over in the evenings to check on him or give him dinner. Linda always has her clients best interested at heart, and it shows as the client only wants her. Linda is always willing to help when needed.
Jessica Martinez has been chosen for employee of the month for June because she an awesome caregiver. Jessica has been with Hired hands since August 2015. Jessica is caring, compassionate, and patient when dealing with her client. She’s always willing to pick up an extra shift or come in early or stay late. She is always team player. We are always receiving feedback from her client’s family on “how amazing she is” and “I wish I could clone her”.
Jessica enjoys taking care of client’s with Alzheimer, or that are developmentally disabled. Jessica was raised in a family of care givers, and truly enjoys taking care of others. On top going to school full time Jessica has a 1 year old she loves to spend time with. She also enjoys outdoor activities, like running, hiking, and swimming. Jessica is … Read More »
When it comes to odd disease names, the shingles virus tops the list. The name of the disease might cause you to picture someone with rows and rows of roofing materials layered over his skin. In actuality, shingles, also known as the herpes zoster virus, is a very painful rash caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox in younger people. If you’ve ever had the chickenpox, unfortunately you are now at risk for also contracting shingles. Shingles risk increases with age, with a full one-half of adults contracting the shingles virus by the age of 80.
To see what the shingles virus really looks like, take a look at this page of photos from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website. It is estimated that there are a million instances of shingles diagnosed in the U.S. each year. For that … Read More »
Phyllis manning the booth at The Alzheimer’s Conference
As summer winds down, parents are busy shopping for school supplies, checking last year’s clothing to see what still fits, scheduling appointments for physical and dental exams, and more often than not, subjecting their children to vaccinations. But fall isn’t just the time for school kids to roll up their sleeves for the dreaded shots. This time of year, even adults should get in on the act, including seniors over age 60.
According to this report from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), adults over the age of 60 should be up to date on the following vaccinations; and if your senior loved one needs a booster, our California senior care services can help!
Influenza – every year
Tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis – every ten years
Varicella (chickenpox) – two doses throughout one’s life
Herpes zoster (shingles) – one dose after the age of 60
Pneumococcal (PPSV23) … Read More »
Technology is amazing, and it’s not just for the younger generation to enjoy! Homebound seniors, in particular, can benefit from the social connections available through technology to allow them to remain actively involved in the world around them. Studies have shown that remaining social benefits our health in a plethora of ways: from reducing our risk of disability, to protecting the brain from mental decline, and even lowering pain and our likelihood of becoming depressed.
Hired Hands Homecare Santa Rosa is pleased to offer the following five ideas to help jumpstart your senior loved ones’ enjoyment of technology:
Social Media: Older adults age 74 and above are the fastest growing demographic among social networks, according to the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project. Social media offers older adults and their families an easy way to check in with each other, … Read More »
We all know that socializing with friends and family makes us feel better and more connected, but it’s also true that remaining social later in life can play a role in fighting dementia. Older adults who stay social have a 70 percent reduction in cognitive decline, as compared to their less social peers, per the results of a study by the Rush University Medical Center. But with fewer friends nearby, and increasing health concerns, it can be a struggle for older adults to keep from falling into an isolated lifestyle. There are, however, steps you can take to help the seniors in your life enhance their socialization.
Seek out volunteer opportunities in the community for your senior loved one.
Help him or her get involved with the local senior center.
Try to find (or start) a group for the senior that focuses … Read More »
Santa Rosa caught a caregiver in action! Renette has been a long time valued team member with Hired Hands. She is one of the most dedicated, compassionate, and hardworking caregivers we know. While doing a home visit with her client of over a year I was impressed with the rapport that she has developed with her client and the family. In fact, the client’s husband bragged that a Dr. had also been so impressed that he asked what company she was with so he could refer in the future. That speaks volumes in itself! That’s how Renette got caught “Caregiving in Action”
The world is certainly smaller now than ever before since the advent of the Internet, and it’s now so easy to stay connected with friends and family at a distance. For seniors who are experiencing periods of isolation, such as those who are homebound, accessing online resources like Facebook, Twitter, and Skype can make a world of difference in their social engagement, and can make a huge impact on their sense of self-worth and purpose. Here are just a few ways social media can change the lives of seniors:
Helps Keep Families Closer: Many older adults wish they heard more often from their loved ones. Facebook is a great way to keep up with family and friends on a more frequent basis. It also helps to deepen relationships by allowing seniors to engage in more frequent conversations with friends and family. … Read More »
Diana Perales was chosen for employee of the month, for her dedication to her clients. Diana goes above, and beyond for her clients and their families. She also works with our special needs clients, and they all fall in love with her. Diana is a team player, collaborating with hospice, and home healthcare to make sure all the protocols are followed daily. She’s always willing to help the office when she can.
Diana has 7 years of care giving experience. Diana is highly skilled in hospice, paralysis and dementia/alzheimer cases.
She’s a very easy-going, and enjoys working with all kinds of clients. Diana is an excellent cook her favorite foods to cook are: mexican, italian, american & Mediterranean. In her spare time she enjoys reading, shopping and traveling.
Diana has completed her First Aid, and CPR training, and Hired Hands Defensive Training course. … Read More »
Everyone needs a little time to get away from it all, to be alone with our thoughts or to settle in with a good book. But when that alone time is excessive, we become at risk for social isolation – an all too common occurrence as we age. And its effects are more detrimental than you may realize, with the potential to impact both physical and mental health in a variety of ways.
Studies have shown that socializing:
Reduces risk of disability
Reduces depression and pain
Protects the brain from mental decline
Increases the quality and length of life
In-home caregivers, such as those at Hired Hands Homecare, can help the older adults in your life stay social and protect their health by:
Encouraging attendance and serving as a personal escort to social outings such as club meetings, community events such as fairs, holiday celebrations and parades, … Read More »
Perhaps there’s nothing harder than walking beside a loved one battling cancer. One of the biggest challenges can be the troubling side effects experienced from treatments like chemotherapy, and you probably want nothing more than to relieve these symptoms and help your loved one recover. Although simply being there for your loved one is strong medicine in and of itself, there are other ways to help. Here are some common side effects and how you can help your loved one overcome them:
Skin Problems: Cancer patients often struggle with a number of treatment- and disease-related skin conditions. Loved ones can help by encouraging the use of sunscreen, helping to protect affected areas from trauma, and keeping skin clean and dry.
Hair Loss: If a cancer patient is concerned about the potential for hair loss, loved ones can help by assisting with the … Read More »
This is Phyllis Mesquita. She was caught looking great in her Hired Hands scrub top and name badge while on a home visit! Our Hired Hands caregivers always giving their best.
Thank you Phyllis!
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with cancer, you may feel as though your world has turned upside down. It’s hard to focus on all of the details, options and choices that need to be considered.
At Hired Hands Homecare, our California caregivers understand the challenges and struggles faced by those battling cancer and by those who love them, and want to help. To start, we thought it might be beneficial to provide some basic details about one of the most commonly recommended treatments – chemotherapy – and answer some of the most frequent questions about this treatment option.
Chemotherapy’s main purpose is to destroy cancer cells, stop cancer cells from spreading, and/or slow cancer cell growth. There are many different kinds of chemotherapy, and it can be given in the following forms:
An IV (intravenously)
A shot (injection) into a … Read More »
Here is a PRIME example of how Hired Hands Homecare operates day in and day out with our amazing Clients and outstanding Caregivers…
On Jun 16, 2016, at 10:15 AM, Erin Winter <Erin@HiredHandsHomecare.com> wrote:
Hi Linda and Emi,
I just wanted to throw out a huge thank you for doing such a great job with Mr. S. I spoke with Mrs. S yesterday and she said “Where have you been hiding these ladies? They were nothing short of perfect, wonderful in every way. Don loved them and enjoyed his time with them! I couldn’t have asked for more!” To get feedback like this is such a gift and we so appreciate your hard work and dedication. Whenever either of you are working with one of our clients, I know they are in the best hands!
Mrs. S has gone through bad experiences with caregivers … Read More »
Heidy Monasterio has been chosen for May’s employee of the month because she is an amazing caregiver. Heidy works full time with a client and they absolutely adore each other. Clients’ daughter is grateful for Heidy and says that she is a fantastic caregiver.
Heidy’s been a caregiver for over 9 years. Heidy is well versed in Hospice, Dementia and Stroke. Heidy especially likes working with mentally ill and developmentally disabled clients/patients.
When Heidy’s not working she enjoys spending time with her family, hiking and knitting.
Heidy loves to help others achieve their goals.
We all benefit from a healthy diet, but it’s especially important for those diagnosed with cancer. Good nutrition helps cancer patients regain strength, enabling them to endure chemotherapy treatments, defend against infections, eliminate breakdown of body tissue, and rebuild lost tissue. Good nutrition also helps patients cope with any cancer treatment side effects and may even be able to help them handle higher doses of certain drugs.
Nutrition recommendations for those with cancer may emphasize eating more higher calorie, higher protein foods. The doctor may recommend drinking more milk or eating foods like cheese and cooked eggs. Other suggestions might include increasing the use of sauces and gravies, or changing cooking methods to include more butter, margarine, or oil. Sometimes, nutrition recommendations for cancer patients suggest eating less of certain high-fiber foods which can aggravate problems such as diarrhea or a … Read More »
When someone you love has cancer, it’s natural to want to drop everything and help that person, but taking on the role of a caregiver is not without challenges. Cancer treatments and the resulting side effects can be especially difficult for both the patients themselves and their loved ones, and sometimes caregivers may feel overwhelmed.
As a caregiver, it’s crucial to know and accept your own limits, and to know that reaching those limits does not mean that you have failed. Having a support system in place is an important part of taking care of your loved one and yourself. Determine which tasks you will do yourself, and which ones you will need help with.
Try these tips, courtesy of Hired Hands Homecare, to help set yourself up for success as a caregiver:
Build your support system. Talk to friends, family members, members … Read More »
Hired Hands Homecare’s Santa Rosa office is PROUD to announce Cynthia A. as our most recent Caregiver of the Month!
Cynthia has worked for Hired Hands since November 2015 and has been an amazing addition to our team. She is always willing to take a last minute shift for us and help out with on-call. One of her most important traits is that Cynthia regularly communicates with the office, and updates us regularly on the clients she is working with, which helps us provide the best care possible. She is a team player and we are proud to have her as our April Caregiver of the Month!
Of course, we love Cynthia, and all of her talents that make a daily difference with our Clients. Recently, Linda P., Cynthia’s Client’s daughter noted “Cynthia has been a great help with my Mom over the … Read More »
You plan for a career. You plan to buy a house. You plan for a family. Life, however, often has other plans and can throw some unexpected curveballs. Caring for an older loved one is not often a job most people plan for, and many underestimate the financial burden, the amount of time it takes to provide care and the emotional toll it can take.
To help keep a healthy balance and avoid caregiver burnout, remember these tips:
Take time for a phone conversation or a visit with a friend or family member every now and then. Too often family caregivers throw themselves full force into caring for their loved one that they lose track of other healthy relationships, which can lead to feelings of isolation and depression. Remember to surround yourself with supportive friends and family.
Set personal limits. Don’t be afraid … Read More »
Even when you love your job, the workplace can be stressful. Now consider how stressful it can be for those who have a second fulltime job caring for an elderly or disabled loved one. For many family caregivers, it can be nearly impossible to find balance between work, caring for a family, and caring for a senior loved one, which can lead to extreme stress and anxiety, and that stress oftentimes carries over into the workplace.
Approximately one in four households is involved in the care of a chronically ill, disabled or aged family member, and just over 50 percent of family caregivers also work full time. There are some telltale signs of caregiving stress for which California employers should be on the lookout. If you notice the following behaviors in your employees, it might mean that they are experiencing caregiving … Read More »
Living far away from senior loved ones in Napa can make home care needs easier to overlook. In fact, many adult children of aging parents don’t realize that Mom and Dad need help until they come home for a visit or spend extended time together during the holidays. If you’re a family caregiver who lives at a distance from your older loved one, it becomes that much more important to have a plan in place for emergencies and care.
The Napa home care experts at Hired Hands Homecare have put together these helpful tips to assist in this endeavor.
When you can’t just drive across town to help out, it’s important to have family discussions about the “What Ifs” that could arise with your loved ones, including:
Living situation preferences depending on severity and who is involved—play out some scenarios for … Read More »
Do you have aging parents in need of care? Are you also trying to juggle caring for children and family at home? Then you are part of the sandwich generation – a generation of people, typically in their thirties or forties, who find themselves responsible for bringing up their own children and caring for their aging parents. The “to-do lists” of today’s sandwich generation are packed. Many family caregivers not only work full time, they are also shuttling children to and from school and after-school activities and maintaining a household on top of their caregiving duties. There are solutions to aid caregivers though, and the first step is getting educated on ways to make the situation more manageable.
At the risk of adding more to your plate, consider adding these items to your to-do list to help make caregiving more manageable:
Have … Read More »
Happy Cinco de Mayo!
Today is a day of festivity, of celebration, of color and of magic. Hired Hands Homecare is truly honored to work so closely with many, many members of the Latino Community, who make such a critically significant and important impact on the lives of the families we work with. While most of us honor and observe this day as a light and festive holiday, we recognize the immense importance of this day to the nation, history and culture of all Latinos. In the name of familia, of history and of independence, and honor… a happy Cinco de Mayo to all!
The Hired Hands Homecare Family
Become a Registered Home Care Aide In one of the fastest growing, most rewarding, industries in America.
Hired Hands Homecare is hiring for Full Time, Part Time, Overnight, and Weekend positions in Marin, Napa, Sonoma, and the Tri-Valley Areas.
Hired Hands Homecare is a family owned and operated California Licensed Home Care Organization that is celebrating our 22nd year serving Bay Area families! We are an Equal Opportunity Employer, and are looking for motivated individuals to join our dedicated Team, and help us improve the quality of life for our clients. “Team:” is a word we take very seriously in our company. No role is too small and everyone plays a crucial part when it comes to taking care of our seniors. Our Management Team works very closely with our Caregivers and clients’ families to assure the highest levels of Care and Customer … Read More »
Are you an Outstanding Caregiver, interested in joining the BEST Homecare Team in Sonoma County?
Hired Hands Homecare is a family owned and operated agency that has been providing the highest caliber Senior Care services in Petaluma, Santa Rosa, Healdsburg, and the rest of Sonoma County for over 22 years.
The plain and simple of it is that we are an outstanding Team, and we are growing quickly and seeking other like minded, outstanding Caregivers to join us. If you have what it takes, and are looking to join an amazing team, please visit us on either of our upcoming Open Houses. Meet our Management Team and fellow Caregivers, and find out what truly sets us apart from other agencies. Consistent hours, excellent pay, benefits, and recognition are just a few of the things our employees are accustomed to. We’d love to … Read More »
Taking a leisurely afternoon stroll in the park, the feel of your toes in the sand at the beach, dancing to your favorite song. The one thing these happy moments all have in common is that they require strong, healthy feet. One of the top concerns for diabetics, aside from managing the disease itself, is the damage that diabetes can cause to the feet. Because of the potential for nerve damage, restricted blood flow, and a weakened immune system, wounds, particularly on the feet, can be difficult to heal.
To stay a step ahead of diabetes-related foot problems, try these tips courtesy of the American Diabetes Association:
Keep your diabetes in check: Stay on top of your diabetes care overall with your health care team, keeping your blood glucose in the appropriate range.
Check your feet daily: Set aside time each day to … Read More »
Hired Hands Homecare’s Pleasanton office is proud to announce Alicia Chavez as the Caregiver of the Month for March of 2016!
Alicia is so great! She has been working steadily, five days per week with a gentleman with early stage dementia. Both the client and his family have had nothing but the highest praise for Alicia. She goes above and beyond the call of duty on a daily basis. Furthermore, she brings her wonderful smile everyday… and leaves one with the client she assists.
Thank you so much Alicia! Your hard work and compassion make a daily difference in the lives of seniors in Pleasanton, Livermore, and the Tri-valley area!
As we’ve noted in previous blogs, diabetes is a serious disease that requires constant management, but when that management is successful, senior diabetics can live long, healthy lives. When a senior’s diabetes is not properly cared for, however, he or she is at a higher risk for major complications such as heart disease and stroke, blindness, kidney disease, and even amputation. If you are concerned that your loved one may need help managing his or her diabetes care, home care can be an invaluable service that provides you with peace of mind and your loved one with the daily care, encouragement, and assistance that he or she needs.
Here are a few ways home care can help people in California with diabetes live healthier, happier lives at home:
A senior with reduced vision may not see a small foot sore that could quickly … Read More »
Our eyes are our windows to the world, but we often don’t see just how vital our vision is until it becomes compromised. Diabetes can affect almost all parts of the body, quite literally from head to toe, and diabetics are at an increased risk for both blindness and other minor vision impairments.
If you or a loved one is living with diabetes, keep an eye out for these top eye conditions that may affect diabetics, according to the American Diabetes Association:
Glaucoma: Since diabetics are at a 40% higher risk of contracting glaucoma, it’s imperative to be screened regularly. The risk also increases with age and with the length of time a person has had diabetes. There are medications available to reduce pressure in the eye, and surgical options as well.
Cataracts: As with glaucoma, the risk of cataracts is more common … Read More »
Senior care is an extremely rewarding but challenging field to be in. We’re dealing with all sorts of people on a daily basis. Our outstanding Management Team communicates constantly with our dedicated Caregivers. We work closely with the senior we are assisting, as well as their family, community partners, and medical team to make sure everything is going according to plan. We’re very proud of our reputation of closely managing our cases, but sometimes, things don’t go exactly the way they are supposed to.
With all those variables, occasionally we get thrown a curve ball or two. This week was a good example. Early in the week, we ran into a situation with a client where their medical supplies had not been properly delivered. That evening, after 9 pm, our On-Call Coordinator was notified that the Client did not have ample supplies on … Read More »
“No cake for you!” “You shouldn’t eat that bread either.” As the number of cases of diabetes in America continues to rise, so, sadly do the myths that surround the disease. For years, there have been many common misconceptions about diabetes, but the California senior care experts at Hired Hands Homecare want to help set the record straight. We’ve compiled a list of some common diabetes myths and the facts that go with them to help you make more informed choices about diabetes care.
Myth: Diabetes isn’t that serious.
Fact: Diabetes is a serious disease. Diabetes causes more deaths per year than breast cancer and AIDS combined. Two out of three people with diabetes die from heart disease or stroke. People with diabetes can often live relatively normal lives, but they must adhere to their doctors’ prescribed treatment for the disease which … Read More »
Do you know someone dealing with vision loss? Being a caregiver to someone losing his or her vision can leave you feelings helpless, but it doesn’t have to. Many people don’t realize one of the easiest ways to help someone with vision loss is to utilize contrasting colors. Rearranging parts of a home utilizing colors more effectively can make it safer and allow for greater independence.
Here are some simple rules to remember regarding color and contrast for those with low vision:
Generally, solid, bright colors such as red, orange, and yellow are easiest to see because of their ability to reflect life.
Place light colored objects against darker backgrounds. For example, a white sheet of paper is more visible against a brown desktop.
Place dark objects against lighter backgrounds. A dark chair will stand out better against cream-colored walls.
Distinguishing colors within each of … Read More »
People often think ‘vision loss’ is synonymous with ‘loss of independence’. When vision starts to decline, simple activities like driving and grocery shopping feel further out of reach. It’s true that a loss in vision can make it harder to go through day-to-day activities, but today there are many different technologies available specifically designed to make vision loss manageable.
Here are a few examples of innovative products to enhance the independence of the visually impaired:
Talking Color Identifier with Light Probe
This small device detects about 100 colors, which can be very helpful when dressing independently. It speaks clearly at three volumes and has an earphone jack.
Hi-Mark™ Tactile Pen
This pen produces a three-dimensional plastic liquid that makes raised lines, dots and shapes to identify clothing, canned goods, frozen foods, and mark the settings on appliances.
VOXCOM III Voice Labeling System
Record messages by pressing a … Read More »
Vision loss can be a scary experience. Suddenly, the world gets smaller, and you can’t do the simple things you once could. While many eye problems are treatable and often maintainable, there comes a time when you simply need help to do the day to day activities safely. However, it can be hard to admit help is needed. You may worry that others will see you differently, that you will lose your privacy, or that you will lose overall independence. These types of fears may keep seniors from admitting the vision problems they are experiencing.
This is why it is important to be able to recognize small changes in behavior and appearance that signal a need for a visit to the eye doctor or a little extra help. If you notice certain behaviors or coping techniques, you may be able to … Read More »
Join Hired Hands Homecare today, March 10 at the TENTH Annual Latinos in the Workplace Conference.
This great educational forum helps empower Latinos to become tomorrow’s workforce leaders, while helping employers to provide safe, productive, and enriching work environments for employees.
Speakers and Topics include:
Sonoma County Supervisor Shirlee Zane, 3rd District
Brett Martinez, President & CEO, Redwood Credit Union
Building Organizational Culture and Leadership from Within
David M. Lanier, Secretary of the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency
Juliann Sum, Chief of Cal/OSHA Division of Occupational Safety and Health
Providing a Safer Workplace in the 21st Century
Diana Ruiz, President and Founder of the Women’s Global Leadership Initiative
Effective Strategies to Recruit, Retain and Develop Latino Talent
Andre Arbelaez, President of the Hispanic IT Executive Council (HITEC) and SVP & Chief Strategy Officer for Softtek USA
The New American Reality
A panel discussion with businesses making a difference with panelists:
Maria Gonzalez, Human Resources Specialist, Fetzer … Read More »
Our vision allows us to move through life with an ease we sometimes take for granted. It allows us to see the wonders of the world, the smiles on our loved ones’ faces, and to move through our day to day activities without a second thought. Vision keeps us independent and self-sufficient, and the idea of losing that ability can be unnerving and saddening.
Because of this, it is important to approach someone experiencing vision loss with care and consideration. Going through the home and making small adjustments can make a senior’s life much easier and allow for continued independence. A general rule of thumb when making home modifications for seniors with impaired vision is to pay special attention to the basic concepts of lighting, color and contrast. Try making a few of these small adjustments:
Try to maintain continuous lighting levels … Read More »
Jim had his second stroke at the age of 61. It was devastating, but Jim was strong, was surrounded by family, and had a great sense of humor. Jim was determined to “dive into the deep end” if that was what it would take to get his life back!
Jim’s wife approached Hired Hands in the Spring of 2015. We would provide a broad range of services to assist Jim in his rehabilitation and recuperation. Not only did we provide home care services at his home in Santa Rosa, but also at the Santa Rosa Junior College, where he attended conditioning and swimming classes, and speech therapy. Quite a daily challenge, but Jim was determined… and making great progress!
Today, we received the following note. After an amazing amount of hard work, Jim has overcome his obstacles, and regained his independence. It has been … Read More »
If you have been diagnosed with heart disease or diabetes or simply high blood pressure, chances are your doctor has advised you to take weekly or daily blood pressure readings with a home blood pressure monitor. But how do we know these readings are accurate? And furthermore, what do those two numbers even mean?
For a quick definition, Harvard Health explains that the top number (systolic pressure) measures artery pressure at the instant the heart beats (when the heart contracts), while the bottom number (diastolic pressure) tracks the pressure between heartbeats (when the heart is resting). They also share the latest normal and high blood pressure guidelines from the Journal of the American Medical Association:
Among adults age 60 and older with high blood pressure, aim for a target blood pressure under 150/90
Among adults age 30 to 59 with high blood pressure, … Read More »
Nearly half of all Americans have one of the three key risk factors of heart disease: high blood pressure, high LDL cholesterol, and smoking. Too many people make poor lifestyle choices every day that negatively affect their heart. Poor diet, excessive alcohol intake, and physical inactivity are just a few things that can do permanent damage. It’s easy to forget to implement the basic ways to take care of our hearts, but it’s one of the most important things to remember. Go back to the basics and protect your heart with these tips provided by Hired Hands Homecare.
Avoid tobacco: If you smoke; quit. If someone in the household smokes, he or she should be encouraged to quit. It’s tough, but it’s tougher to recover from a heart attack or stroke or to live with chronic heart disease.
Be more active: Be … Read More »
“If She Were A Swan…” – Celebrate Women’s Heart Health Month with the Hired Hands Homecare Challenge
We all know the story about the ugly duckling who turned out to be a beautiful swan. The obvious moral of that story is that some things, upon first glance, are not what they appear to be. It is with that story in mind that Hired Hands Homecare invites you to celebrate Women’s Heart Health Month with the “IF She Were a SWAN…” Challenge.
As with men, a woman’s most common heart attack symptom is chest pain. But while some heart attacks are sudden and intense, most of them actually start slowly with mild discomfort. The National Institutes of Health notes that women often experience physical symptoms as long as a month or more before experiencing the actual heart attack. Additionally, women are somewhat more likely than men to experience and report some of the other less predictable symptoms. Use the … Read More »
When a loved-one experiences a heart attack or stroke, it seems logical to focus on a laundry list of steps that can be taken to ensure that the damaged heart heals and the person’s lifestyle choices that contributed to the heart attack are changed. Hired Hands Homecare receives calls from families throughout California, from Marin to Sonoma, requesting, as part of their in-home care, lists of actionable items – to-do lists for care and heart health. In a situation fraught with chaos, lists give caregivers a sense of control. They are the instruction manual for the caregivers’ new reality, helping them know what they should do to encourage healing and keep another heart attack from happening.
That information is available, and when combined with Hired Hands’ in-home care services, makes a tremendous difference in a patient’s outcome. However, there is another … Read More »
Once you’ve determined that in-home care is the best option to keep your senior loved one safe, healthy and socially engaged, you may run into a stumbling block when it’s time to bring your loved one fully on board with the idea. Many seniors balk at the thought of bringing a “stranger” into the home, or in having their routines disrupted.
At Hired Hands Homecare, we understand the trepidation that can occur when the idea of bringing a caregiver into the home is introduced, and are empathetic to seniors’ valid concerns. Following are five tips from the Family Caregiver Alliance that can help minimize objections to in-home care:
Begin slowly – and early. Don’t wait until the care need reaches the emergency crisis stage. As soon as you begin to notice small changes in your senior loved one’s daily living abilities, gradually … Read More »
As we shared in our last blog post, there are a variety of care options available to seniors and their families who are looking to avoid a costly and life-changing transition to a nursing home or assisted living facility. If you’ve determined that senior home care may be the right option for your senior loved one, the next step is to make sure you’re fully educated on the crucial differences between hiring a caregiver privately through a registry or newspaper ad, and utilizing the services of a professional home care agency like Hired Hands Homecare.
Registry/Private Hire vs. the Home Care Agency
Although hiring a caregiver privately or through a registry may seem more affordable than a professional agency at first glance, there are hidden costs and risks associated with the private hire and registry.
Tax Issues/Worker’s Compensation: A professional home care agency … Read More »
Hired Hands Homecare is proud to present Cathy Wadleigh. Ms. Wadleigh is an LVN, PAC Certified Trainer, and group facilitator specializing in grief recovery and family transition.
Informative sessions focusing on helping families and individuals adjusting to living with Alzheimer’s and Dementia will be held at the Hired Hands Homecare Pleasanton office on the first and third Tuesday of the month, with two sessions 11:30-1pm, and 4:30-6pm.
For more information, please contact Cathy at 925-413-2080, or email her at Cathy@AssistanceWithAging.com.
Most California seniors wholeheartedly agree: there’s no place like home as they age, and the thought of a potential need to move into a nursing home is a frightening one. But for concerned family members who notice a decline in their senior loved ones’ health, mobility, and abilities to perform the daily tasks of living, a nursing home or assisted living facility may seem inevitable.
Hired Hands Homecare, however, wants to offer some hope and encouragement to seniors and their families, through the option of professional in-home care. With varying levels of care, many seniors are able to remain safe and independent in the comfort of home throughout the process of aging. Here are four types of care that can be provided right at home:
Private Duty Home Care: Private duty home care services include companionship, housekeeping, transportation, personal care, dementia care, respite … Read More »
At Hired Hands Homecare, we understand that beginning the process of seeking home care in California for your senior loved one can be a daunting process. We’ve compiled the following list of questions to ask as you talk with potential home care agency candidates, to help make the task a little easier and enable you to make a well-informed decision:
Service listing. Do they offer services specific to your loved one’s listed, required needs? Is someone available to provide information on all services, eligibility requirements and funding sources? Is that information available online or can they send it to you?
Training and supervision. What formal training programs and certifications does the agency require of its direct care providers? What level of professional supervises the care? How often and how do the supervisors oversee the caregivers on location to ensure proper care is … Read More »
Everywhere you look this time of year, you’ll see portrayals of the joys of the holiday season. But for many seniors, the holidays can bring about a sense of sadness and loss, as they recall holidays past when perhaps their health was better or when loved ones who have passed away were still with them. To help your senior loved ones beat the holiday blues, try some of these colorful tips:
RED: In some cultures, red denotes purity, joy, and celebration. What better way to celebrate the joy of the season than to offer assistance in decorating an elderly family member’s house for the holidays? Don’t forget to also volunteer to help take down the decorations after the holidays!
ORANGE: Put some logs on the fire or light some candles and cozy up to reminisce about special times and people. Often, older … Read More »
As we discussed in our last blog, bringing the whole family together for an activity, such as creating a memory book, can provide a wonderful opportunity to connect seniors more closely with the younger generations. At Hired Hands Homecare, we believe it’s so important to strengthen family bonds, and work hard to help seniors participate in activities that foster togetherness with their loved ones, fighting off feelings of loneliness and isolation.
Sometimes, physical or cognitive limitations can make it difficult for seniors to fully feel a part of the festivities. And sometimes, younger family members can get so caught up in the hectic pace we’ve grown accustomed to that even with the best of intentions, older family members end up being left out.
To that end, we’d like to offer some additional suggestions that your family can try during the holiday season … Read More »
If your family is like many others, you’re finding a generational gap between seniors and younger family members that may be hard to bridge. Technology often takes priority over the more personal, face-to-face interactions that seniors grew up experiencing, and it can be challenging to set aside the iPhones and tablets and fully engage with each other.
At Hired Hands Homecare, we’ve discovered a tried and true activity that captures the attention and interest of all ages, especially during the holiday season: working together to create a memory book. Memory books capture the life and legacy of a beloved family matriarch or patriarch, and become cherished keepsakes for generations to come.
First, decide whether you’d like to record the memories in writing, as an audio recording or as a video (or some combination of each). Then gather the questions you’d like to … Read More »
Because those with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia thrive best on routine and predictability, the holiday season, with its influx of visitors, bright decorations, different foods and activities, etc., can cause some unsettled feelings and distress. At Hired Hands Homecare of California, we’re familiar with the overwhelming nature of the holidays for some seniors, and have put together the following ideas that have worked well to help the seniors in our care maintain a sense of calm and peace:
Stretch out the celebration. Rather than opening a pile of gifts at once, try just one or two at a time for a more low-key approach.
Keep it small. Host small get-together visits, stretched out over several days, instead of trying to incorporate someone with dementia into a large, noisy party.
Maintain routines. As much as possible, hold fast to the routines … Read More »
A heartfelt Happy Thanksgiving to the entire Hired Hands family. All the best to you and yours on this great day.
This holiday season, help yourself to an extra serving of turkey, potatoes, and pumpkin pie, but forego that heaping helping of stress! The best way to ensure all of the holiday to-dos get done, while caring for your senior loved one and keeping your sanity, is to create a plan that enlists the help of family members, friends and neighbors.
While many of us feel uncomfortable requesting help, the other side of the equation is that loved ones truly do want to lend a hand, but often are unsure how. By providing specific tasks to those who want to help, you’re allowing them the opportunity to provide meaningful assistance, and giving yourself some much needed stress relief.
Make a holiday task list of everything you have to accomplish (or think you have to accomplish). Include items like:
Sending holiday cards
Buying gifts for co-workers, … Read More »
It may be the most wonderful time of the year, but with all of the decorating, shopping, cleaning, gatherings to attend, travel plans to make…it can also be the most stressful time of the year! If you are doing all of these activities while also providing care for a senior loved one, you may find yourself officially overwhelmed.
These days, with nearly everyone cutting back on spending, the holidays have been naturally scaled-back in many ways. However, if you’re still finding yourself overscheduled or pressured to shop and entertain, here are a few tips and shortcuts that can help you maintain your sanity, care for your loved one, and have a jolly holiday:
Check in with your body. If you don’t feel well, don’t say yes to that party invite. Your health is paramount, so make it your priority every time.
Gather in … Read More »
For seniors with a lifetime of holiday memories, this time of year can bring about feelings of warm nostalgia, but can also trigger more negative emotions. Loss of loved ones and times gone by, stressful changes to routine, and perhaps confusion and anxiety if there are underlying physical, mental or emotional conditions at play can all lead to a full-blown case of the holiday blues.
Many seniors also face loneliness. Even if family members live in the same city, adult children often become so busy with their own lives and social obligations that they fail to recognize how much their parents or grandparents look forward to spending time with them during the holidays. Help an older person enjoy the holiday season by following these simple tips:
Stroll down memory lane. Older people whose memories are impaired may have difficulty remembering recent events, … Read More »
The Hired Hands Homecare Team in Pleasanton is thrilled to lend its support to the 2015 Tri-Valley Community Outreach Thanksgiving Dinner!
We are working collaboratively with many local businesses, churches and community organizations to make this a special holiday for families, seniors, military and singles. It is a special time of year for all, but can be difficult for those less fortunate. A warm meal and the congenial company of others can make a big difference for many. Please let us know if you are interested in participating or attending this wonderful event.
Details can be found on Thanksgiving Pleasanton flyer, or by visiting the website at http://www.tvc-thanksgiving.com.
The holiday season can be a whirlwind of fun, celebrating with family and friends, but it can also take a toll on an already overstressed family caregiver. Caring for another person often takes center stage over caring for yourself, but at Hired Hands Homecare in California, we want to provide you with some encouragement to make self-care a priority. After all, a relaxed, healthy caregiver is able to provide a higher quality of care than a frazzled one! Take these five recommendations to heart, and in doing so, help both yourself and those in your care:
Eat a well-balanced diet
When you’re stressed out, you may tend to overeat. When you’re exhausted, it’s easy to resort to whatever is handy; quick snack foods, tea and toast, cheese doodles and soda. You need high quality food to perform well.
Get regular exercise
Exercise is the … Read More »
If you are planning for long-term care, you know there are a plethora of things to think about. It can be an extremely confusing process if you try to go it alone, but never fear – Hired Hands Homecare is here to walk beside you each step of the way! Since more and more of us prefer to age at home, it is important to learn about the various types of in-home care options. Here are five types of home care in California that you should know about:
Full Service Private Duty/Private Pay Agencies are usually “non-medical” services and can range from companionship, housekeeping, transportation, personal care, and dementia care to 24-hour or respite care. A private duty home care agency, like Hired Hands Homecare, provides non-medical care by employees of the agency who are screened, trained, monitored and typically bonded … Read More »
Greetings! Join us today, Oct. 21 from 9am – 3pm at the Marin Senior Information Fair. Tons of great information for and about Seniors. Get your Flu vaccine, and make sure you stop by the Hired Hands Homecare booth to say hello. We’d love to answer any questions you may have about how we can help families and their senior loved ones!
Marin Exhibit Hall, 10 Avenue of the Flags, San Rafael. For more information, please visit http://www.marinseniorinformationfair.org.
Have you started the process of looking for home care services for yourself or a loved one? At Hired Hands Homecare, we know this is an important process. Finding quality care and knowing what level of care you or your loved needs can be overwhelming. We are here to help! We have broken down some of the main functions and ability levels that we take into account when recommending either part-time or full-time home care.
Minimal to Minor Care at Home:
Emergency Responsiveness: The individual is able to negotiate stairs, call for assistance or respond appropriately to someone helping him or her during an emergency.
Mobility: The individual is able to walk and transfer himself or herself from a bed or chair independently with infrequent falling.
Activities of Daily Living (bathing, dressing, feeding, etc.): The individual is able to accomplish most activities with little … Read More »
When is the right time to start thinking about future care? Though this thought may not be at the top of your to-do list, the answer is right now! The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that by 2050, 21.5% of the United States population will be over 65. By the year 2025, $260 billion will be spent on long-term care for the elderly (up from $102 billion in 2000). Many people are unaware that Medicare does not cover most long-term care services. Planning ahead allows greater dignity, control, and independence over how future needs are met.
This type of planning starts with looking into what the cost will be if care is needed from in-home assistance to nursing home or assisted living care. Also, talking with a spouse, adult children, friends, and siblings about whether they would want to or be able … Read More »
Do you have an aging loved one struggling to accept the fact that he or she needs some extra help at home? One of the greatest fears we have as we age is the loss of independence and the ability to live at home alone. Because of this fear, it may be very difficult to ask for or to accept the help we need. If you have an aging loved one who is struggling with the idea of allowing some extra help at home, Hired Hands Homecare in California has some helpful tips to try:
Introduce the senior to the caregiver before care begins in order to help establish a relationship so that the caregiver is not perceived as a stranger.
If the senior is afraid of having someone he or she doesn’t know in the home, consider having a family member … Read More »
Vitamins and minerals are a vital aspect of health for people of all ages. However, as we’ve noted in previous blog posts, nutrition needs change as we age, and it’s important for seniors to talk with their doctors to ensure that their particular nutritional needs are being met.
The National Institute on Aging highlights the following vitamins and minerals as being crucial for seniors in the right quantities:
Vitamin D: For those over age 70, a level of between 800 and 4,000 IU is recommended (up from the 600 – 4,000 IU recommended for ages 50 – 70). Good sources for vitamin D include milk, fish, fish oil and some cereals.
Vitamin B6: Found in liver and other organ meats, whole grains, and some cereals, women need 1.5 mg each day, while the need increases for men to 1.7 mg.
Vitamin B12: For those … Read More »
Hired Hands Homecare is proud to sponsor the upcoming Dublin Senior Info Fair!
Join us on Sat., October 3 from 10am – 2pm, at the Dublin Senior Center, 7600 Amador Valley BLVD.
A variety of agencies and organizations will be on hand to provide valuable information, referrals, and health services for adults 50 and older, their families, caregivers, and friends. Enjoy refreshments and drawings for prizes.
Hired Hands Homecare is proud to support seniors in the amazing city of Dublin, CA. For more information, please call the Dublin Senior Center at 925-556-4511, or click here for an informational informational flyer.
We hope to see you there!
Did you know that ONE out of every THREE seniors aged 65+ falls each year. The more tragic statistic is that EVERY 13 seconds, a senior is treated in the emergency room because of a fall! Let’s put needed focus and attention towards minimizing this enormous problem!
The Eighth Annual Fall Prevention Awareness Day will be celebrated on September 23, 2015 – the first day of fall. As such, we’d love to spread the word about all things Fall Prevention. A great information sheet is the NCOA-6-Steps-to-Prevent-a-Fall which includes 6 easy tips that can be used to avoid falls. This is great information, and are easy ways that we can become aware on how to stay safe, and reduce the likelihood of a fall.
Over in the East Bay, the Senior Support Program of the Tri-Valley presents “Take a Stand to Prevent Falls”. Please join … Read More »
While many of us struggle with how to eat less and lose weight, many older adults have the opposite problem. Age-related issues can make it difficult for seniors to eat enough to maintain proper health. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration provides some solutions to help seniors overcome common eating problems, such as:
Chewing problems: For seniors who cannot chew food well, meats and fresh fruits and vegetables can be a problem. The FDA suggests the following substitutions:
Instead of fresh fruit, try fruit juice, apple sauce, or canned peaches and pears.
Instead of raw vegetables, try vegetable juices or mashed and cooked vegetables.
Instead of large pieces of meat, try ground meat, eggs, milk, cheese, yogurt and other dairy products.
Instead of sliced bread, try cooked cereals, rice, bread pudding and soft cookies.
Upset stomach: Too much gas and other stomach problems may cause people … Read More »
In our previous blog post, we talked about how the new MyPlate for Older Adults nutritional model reflects the dietary needs of today’s seniors. MyPlate for Older Adults provides guidance on the types of foods that could provide nutritional benefits to adults 65 and over, but it’s also important for seniors to find a balance of meeting the same nutrient needs as when they were younger, yet consume fewer calories. The following are some tips to help seniors meet their nutrient needs, while staying within their caloric limits:
Drink low-fat milk: Low-fat milk is more nutrient-dense than higher fat milk. Its nutrient content is the same, but it has fewer calories because it has less fat.
Get steamy: Steaming is the best way to cook vegetables because it preserves nutrients. Boiling leaches nutrients from vegetables, but the leftover cooking water can be … Read More »
At Hired Hands, we truly take great pride in not only what we do, but equally important, HOW we do it. As time goes on, there will continue to be more and more options for senior care. We’re firmly committed to being among the best options in the communities that we serve.
This morning, we received the following accolade from a new client in the Tri-Valley area. As their family has been dealing with the challenges of caring for a loved one, they have run into several obstacles and less than ideal situations with different care providers. Needless to say, their compliment put a definite smile on our faces!
“First and foremost, Thank YOU. You and your team have brought faith back to this journey we are on. It didn’t just start with the last agency that let us down. It has not been pleasant … Read More »
Everyone knows that a healthy diet is essential for a healthy body. What many people don’t realize however is that, as you age, your dietary needs change. Researchers at Tufts University have developed the MyPlate formula, an upgrade on the old food pyramid, which provides updated and improved nutrition advice for people age 65 and over.
The MyPlate for Older Adults model emphasizes the importance of foods that are high in vitamins and minerals and low in fat, salt and sugar; however, it also includes guidance regarding recommended regular physical activities and fluid intake, components that are of particular concern for older adults.
Due to decreased activity, older adults tend to need fewer calories as they age, but their bodies still require the same or higher levels of nutrients and regular activity for optimal health. MyPlate for Older Adults recommends focusing nutrition … Read More »
When caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease, it’s natural to want to do everything for the person to minimize feelings of frustration – both for your loved one and for yourself. However, it’s in everyone’s best interest for the person with Alzheimer’s to maintain self-worth and dignity by managing tasks as independently as possible. Try these tips to enhance your loved one’s independence:
Allow extra time. Try not to let the issue of time guide the decision on whether or not to take over a task. If your loved one with Alzheimer’s has the ability to perform the task himself, allow the extra time needed and provide encouragement and positive reinforcement along the way.
Break it down. Taking a larger task and separating it into small, simple steps can change it from insurmountable to possible. For example, break down the … Read More »
Understanding the complexities of Alzheimer’s is challenging, to say the least. Since it impacts each person uniquely, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to providing care. However, there are some broad similarities that can be categorized into three stages:
This stage of the disease can last for years.
Your loved one may experience some changes in thinking and learning abilities, which may not be detectable to others without daily contact.
What you can do:
Be a care advocate for your loved one, providing emotional support and encouragement.
Help plan for the future:
Discuss care setting desires (home, assisted living, hospice) and identify care providers.
Research support groups.
Discuss end of life care requests.
Provide memory prompts and personal organization assistance when needed.
Provide assistance with money management or hire a professional to assist.
Establish a regular daily routine.
Help your loved one to stay healthy and engaged in what he or she loves … Read More »
In our last blog, we outlined the warning signs that could point to Alzheimer’s. It’s important to note, however, that a number of the symptoms of Alzheimer’s are strikingly similar to those of depression. In order to receive proper treatment, it’s crucial to accurately document which, if any, of the symptoms below are being exhibited by your loved one, and share that information with his or her physician:
It may start out as subtle little nuances that are barely noticeable – Mom begins experiencing slight memory lapses and forgetfulness, occasionally misplacing the keys or phone – but perhaps there’s enough of a change in her behavior to make you wonder: could it be Alzheimer’s? Here are ten red flags to be on the lookout for:
Hired Hands Receives third consecutive Prestigious “Best of Home Care” Award from Home Care Pulse
Quality is key – especially when it comes to family. In order to truly gauge the quality of our services, we contracted with Home Care Pulse, a national firm that closely measures Client and Employee Satisfaction in the caregiving industry. Our dedication to quality standards earned us their designation, Certified – Trusted Provider. Hundreds of our clients, their families, and our amazing caregivers have been contacted by Home Care Pulse to answer a brief survey regarding our quality of service.
Everyone approaches their finances in different ways – some people are frugal, others spend-thrifts, and most people are somewhere in between. But no matter how we manage our money, there’s always a possibility that we can go off track, make a bad decision, or start having difficulties in doing financial tasks, like paying bills.
For some seniors, finances may represent independence, and any suggestion that they may be having difficulty managing their money may make them fear a loss of that independence. As well, they are from a generation that was often taught that you don’t discuss money, that this is an intensely personal part of life. That being said, difficulty managing money can be a sign of cognitive decline, and an indication that in-home health services may be needed.
So how can you make sure your loved one is able to … Read More »
When we hear about “elder abuse,” our first reaction is likely to think about physical or psychological abuse. Sadly, there also exists financial abuse, and it’s more common than we may think. Elderly Americans are the victims of fraud adding up to more than $2.6 billion per year, according to statistics.
Fraud can occur in many ways, from online scams to people stealing directly from their victims. If you’re a caregiver to a senior, you may want to ensure that he or she is aware of the risks of being scammed and how to reduce that risk.
Techniques used by fraudsters
Telemarketing, computer “phishing,” and befriending lonely seniors are popular techniques among fraudsters. Telemarketing fraud occurs when people call seniors and convince them to buy something they don’t need (often with recurring payments), or to buy items or contribute to causes that don’t … Read More »
Do you think that someone you care for is compulsively hoarding? Is his or her situation becoming more and more difficult to manage? Are you worried?
Compulsive or pathological hoarding, officially called disposophobia, is more than just gathering or living with clutter. It’s an excessive gathering of objects, regardless of their value. The idea of giving away or throwing away any of the objects, even trash, causes great stress.
Hoarding causes several problems. Too many objects in a living space can cause problems with hygiene – both in the home and with personal hygiene if washing facilities are blocked. Extreme clutter can encourage social isolation, due to embarrassment about the state of the home and the inability to clean up well enough to go out. And the clutter also can be a safety hazard. Clutter can cause falls, destroy home foundations, and … Read More »
“I want to stay in my own home.” That is a frequently heard statement by many seniors, even if they may be having some difficulty managing on their own. And who can blame them? Their home is where they likely feel safest. They know where things are and they have their routines. They may have friends and family who live nearby, who add to their quality of life. But if you have concerns about your loved one’s ability to continue living at home, how will you know if he or she needs help, perhaps in the form of in-home health care services?
Here is a list of questions to ask yourself to help you determine if your loved one is as safe as possible and if he or she may need some extra help:
Has your loved one unintentionally lost … Read More »
Hired Hands is proud to announce Karen M as our June 2015 Caregiver of the Month in Sonoma County! Karen has been working closely with our Santa Rosa homecare team for over a year now, and has been a invaluable member of our Live-in team since Day One. Karen commits herself fully to every assignment she accepts – no matter how challenging the case may be! Some recent comments from families that Karen has worked with…
“During our conversation, Marcella told me that Karen has been absolutely great with her husband and she truly appreciates our flexibility to handle her scheduling requests.”
“Karen is just a joy to be around! She is very creative and fun to talk to. She is truly keeping me going. Karen is always doing these origami crafts while we sit and chat. It is very relaxing … Read More »
As our senior population grows, so does the already enormous problem of Elder Abuse. New cases arise daily regarding the abuse, neglect or exploitation of seniors. Unfortunately, we also know that the reported cases are only a small percentage of what is actually happening behind closed doors. It is estimated that only one in 23 actual elder abuse situations actually get reported.
This week, an article shed light on a recent case in our own back yard. Local bank staff, and social workers noticed some things that didn’t quite seem right, and notified the proper authorities. We’re fortunate to live in an area where the District Attorney’s Office takes these accusations very seriously. We’ll see where this case goes…
Hired Hands Homecare also takes this topic very seriously. Awareness and education go a long way in helping people understand the severity of this problem, as well as ways that … Read More »
We are honored to introduce Rossana as our May 2015 Caregiver of the Month in Pleasanton! Rossana brings a wealth of knowledge to work everyday, and specializes in working with our clients experiencing dementia. Outside of work, she enjoys traveling, soccer, and movies. On top of that, she is fluently bilingual in English and Spanish, and has a beautiful Siberian Husky.
Hmm… if there were only a movie about a Spanish speaking dog that plays soccer abroad!
Rossana, we tip our hat and Thank You for everything you do! We’re proud to have you on our Team!
Hired Hands Homecare – Marin is proud to award Maria C. our outstanding Caregiver of the Month for March 2015!
Maria has been a dedicated Hired Hands employee since 2006. Her devotion to her clients is her number 1 priority. Maria is an excellent communicator when it comes to keeping Hired Hands management aware of her clients various needs and change in condition. We want to congratulate Maria for doing an amazing job everyday and especially for being such a star!!
Maria – we tip our hat to you. Thanks so much for ALL you do!
The Hired Hands Homecare Marin Team
Hired Hands Homecare Sonoma is proud to announce that Di Anna H is our Caregiver of the Month for March 2015! We are honored to have had the joy of working with Di Anna since 2007! Di Anna is organized, thorough in her reporting and never fails to keep her scheduling commitments. Thank you, Di Anna, for your dedication to excellence!
Recently, some of the families that we work with commented that:
“I am very happy with everyone there, especially with Di Anna. Di Anna has kept herself available for fill-ins these past few weeks and has helped us keep schedule continuity for June, which is extremely important to our family.”
“Laura reports that her family ‘just loves’ Di Anna!”
“Mrs. C gives a resounding applause for Di Anna, saying she is a ‘perfect caregiver’!!!”
“I called Renee to ask how she thought things were going and she said everything is … Read More »
There are so many wonderful qualities about Jamie that Hired Hands Napa had no choice but to award her Caregiver of the Month for March 2015. She is always thoughtful and considerate towards her clients and the clients family alike. Most importantly, she understands the importance of continuity. Jamie stays committed to her schedule, arrives on time and comes ready to provide Napa’s best senior care! On top of that, Jamie has a bubbly outgoing personality that is contagious and works extremely well with her co-workers.
We are so happy and lucky to have her on our team. Congratulations Jamie for being our Caregiver of the Month for March 2015. Cheers to you for all you do!
Consider the facts…
Currently, over 5 million Americans are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease.
Every sixty-seven seconds, someone develops the disease.
Almost 2/3s of those with Alzheimer’s Disease are women.
Everyone knows someone who suffers from Dementia and/or Alzheimer’s Disease. We may not fully understand the disease, but we are fully aware of the challenges. Because of this, we were especially excited to read this recent report. Yesterday’s report out of Australia reports that huge strides have been made in laboratory tests, and that a team at the Queensland Brain Institute has come up with a possible advance that would successfully treat Alzheimer’s.
Hired Hands Homecare is very proud of our special Dementia/Alzheimer’s Team. This amazing group of Caregivers has received extensive specialized training, giving them the knowledge and tools to better assist families dealing with this difficult situation. If we may be of any … Read More »
Greetings! We are thrilled to say that we are extremely busy! Due, in no small part, to the excellence of our Team! We cannot thank you enough for all your dedication and hard work!
Hired Hands Homecare is pleased to announce our new Caregiving Academy – an amazing and innovative training platform that will be rolled out very soon. We will be utilizing the powers of the internet and interactive video to provide information, education, and valuable tools all specifically related to the art of caregiving.
Caregivers perform an amazing variety of tasks on a daily basis. Client’s needs and demands vary, and we very much appreciate your hard work. We understand that it keeps you very busy. So busy, that sometimes you may forget fundamental safety work practices. Thus, we wanted to provide some simple information especially for you so that you can refresh, learn and work safely each and every day.
Our latest Caregiver Extraordinaire is Estefania H!
Estefania has worked for Hired Hands Homecare now for about a year, and has been particularly helpful about accepting challenging cases on short notice. Thank you Estefania for your dedication and your ‘can-do’ attitude!! Recently, some of her clients said the following:
Wendy is super compassionate and really committed to Hired Hands and her clients. She has a history of making herself available when we need help at the last minute, which is extremely appreciated! She is very dedicated to her clients and revolves around their particular needs. Not only is she extremely flexible, but she has a wide variety of skills, and is particularly well versed at working with seniors in dementia and hospice settings.
It’s that time of year where a warm & tasty bowl of healthy soup just soothes the soul! This recipe is quick and easy, and can be adapted easily to suit particular tastes. On top of that… The Health Quotient is high, and the calorie count pretty low. Give it a try, and let us know what you think!
“I have a dream that one day, this nation will rise up and live our the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self -evident, that all men are created equal.’” ~ Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
In celebration of the great Dr. King, our offices will be closed on Monday, Jan. 19, 2015.
Need assistance with ADLs in Mill Valley? Need help with Dad and his dementia in Santa Rosa? Do you know a senior who needs care in Pleasanton? Even though our offices are closed on Monday, our On-call Coordinator can be reached at 707-799-3200.
Thanks, and Take Care!
The Hired Hands Homecare Team
Every day, hundreds of people throughout the Bay Area go hungry. This Holiday Season, we reached out to those around us, accepting gracious donations toward local Food Banks. After all, every little bit helps!
In Marin, our office connected with the SF/Marin Food Bank. More information can be found at www.sfmfoodbank.org. In Napa, our partner was the Napa Valley Food Bank. In Sonoma, we joined with the Redwood Empire Food Bank (www.refb.org). In the Pleasanton/Tri-Valley area, we worked with Open Heart Kitchen (www.OpenHeartKitchen.org).
A HUGE THANK YOU goes out to all of the amazing folks that were so generous in their contributions! Our collective donations far exceeded our expectations, and we’re proud to reach out and help others in our communities!
Much Thanks and Happy New Year!
The Hired Hands Homecare Team
Come One, Come All…
Come join us for some Holiday Cheer! Our offices will be holding our TWENTIETH Annual Holiday Open House parties… and would love to spend some time with our amazing Caregivers.
Marin and Sonoma offices: Friday, December 12th, from 11 – 3.
Napa and Pleasanton offices: Friday, December 19th, from 11-3.
We look forward to seeing you!
~ The Hired Hands Homecare Team
p.s. Please don’t forget to bring canned/packaged food items for our food drive for the Food Bank! We appreciate everyone’s generosity – it goes a long way to helping those in need! MUCH THANKS!
Here’s to Lucky 7! Gooooooo GIANTS!
Friday, August 17 was a very proud day for the Hired Hands Homecare team. Today, we had the honor of celebrating our First Anniversary of providing outstanding senior care in California to the communities of Pleasanton, Livermore and Danville. The afternoon was shared with a large, distinguished group of local business owners and professionals. We were honored to be joined by several clients, along with some of our amazing caregivers. On top of that… the Mayor of Pleasanton dropped by for a special Ribbon Cutting to help celebrate!
Erin Winter, Hired Hands VP of Operations and current Homecare Director for the Pleasanton office, summed it up best when she stated: “We are truly honored to be surrounded by so many amazing people. In one short year we have had the opportunity to support many families, develop an amazing growing team of … Read More »
When it comes to proving amazing caregiving in Napa… Kimberly knows a thing or two!
We’ve had the pleasure of working with Kimberly since 2011. She is amazing patient, reliable, and truly goes above and beyond to ensure the happiness and well-being of her clients. She’s always got a smile, and is such a joy to be around!
Congrats Kim, we appreciate all you do!
Napa Caregiver of the Month
A BIG thanks and Congrats to Jane! She is our Napa home care provider of the month.
We’ve had the opportunity to work with Jane for over a year now. A client recently noted that ” Jane is consistently calm, gentle and kind in nature.” Just what the Doctor ordered!
Jane, thanks so much for all you do!
Sheryl has been with Hired Hands since October 2013. She is always glowing with positivity and warmth, putting a smile on everyone’s face. She is a very confident, intuitive, detail oriented, compassionate, dedicated, and truly goes above and beyond for her clients.
Sheryl – Thanks so much for all you do!
~The Hired Hands Homecare Team
Darlene came on board with Hired Hands Pleasanton in September 2013. Since joining our team she has work ed with several of our clients. Most recently she has been working with a client who has Lewy Body Dementia. Darlene has made such an impact not only with the client but with the client’s family as well. The client’s daughter-in-law said “Darlene is great! She takes control and gets things done.”
Darlene you are really GREAT!
Thank you for all your hard work and dedication.
~The Hired Hands Homecare Team
“This is the best class at the Senior Center! I look forward to it all week.”
We’re proud of the enthusiastic attendance at the Hula Sessions being held at the Dublin Senior Center! The turnout and feedback have been overwhelmingly positive. The best is that we’re seeing people of all ages and walks of life, including those with walkers! Way to go Julia!
“This class is so wonderful – it makes me feel so happy!”
I just got off the phone with the family of one of our clients, Sylvia B, who passed away this past Saturday. They were overwhelmed by the quality of home care service we provided to Sylvia in her final days. The daughter said she had no idea people like this still exist in the world. “What beautiful blessing!” They asked me to extend their sincere and heartfelt gratitude to: Yoanne, Aisha, Maude, Jane, Mirna, Diana, Marcelina, Emily, and Phoenix for all the work you did to ease the pain, create security, and ease the anxiety for Sylvia. The family said you are all angels. They remembered each of your names specifically.
Thank you for making such a significant impact during such a difficult time.
April 16, 2014 was National Healthcare Decisions Day and I was fortunate enough to take part in an amazing event at the Kaiser Center in Oakland. In collaboration with several passionate volunteers and exhibitors from local hospices and healthcare industries, we broke down some of the stigmas and got to talking. Hundreds of people from all walks of life attended; many, sitting down to have The Conversation and complete their Advanced Healthcare Directive.
In our culture, it is taboo to discuss death; it is unsavory to discuss medical care; it is uncomfortable to talk with your friends and family about your wishes should you not be able to speak or act for yourself. But, it is a conversation that has the power to assure that all are put at ease should a serious illness or injury occur. Why aren’t we having … Read More »
Kelly G. is our April 2014 Employee of the Month for the Peace of Mind Program! Kelly has been with Hired Hands since December 2011, and has worked with all manner of clients but we always get the same reports: “We love Kelly!”. “Kelly is always looking for something to do.” Kelly has become an integral part of the Peace of Mind Team, and is always ready to lend a hand. Thank you for all your hard work and dedication!
Our latest ROCKSTAR is Les Peterson! Les has worked for Hired Hands since April of 2013, and has been known to go above and beyond in his commitment to the clients he serves. Les always has a smile on his face and has a knack for bringing folks out of their shells!
“During our conversation, Mrs. Brown told me Les was great and that he is welcome anytime!”
“John’s family loves Les and feels he is providing excellent care.”
“Nancy told me Les has been a HUGE help to her and her family and she has ‘no complaints whatsoever.’”
“Ethel and Jim just love Les! Rick could not say enough good things about him!”
Les, we very much thank you for the great positive effect you have with our clients and their families!
Congratulations to Pleasanton’s Caregiver of the Month for April 2014!
We’re honored to work with Julia. Recently Julia was working with 2 clients (father and daughter). As you can imagine this was a touching assignment and Julia always went in with compassion and grace. Julia brought a sense of relief to the clients’ wife and mother as she was going through a tremendous amount of stress and emotions. The client’s wife introduced Julia to their family as “she is my right hand, she is my left hand; she is my everything.”
Julia you truly are amazing and have the natural born caregiving gene. We are so lucky to have you on our TEAM!
Hired Hands is honored to announce Pat has been awarded Napa’s Caregiver of the Month for April 2014. Pat has been a dedicated caregiver with Hired Hands since May of 2010. Pat loves her job and greatly enjoys being a caregiver. She has worked with her current client for over 2 years, and they’re going strong! Recently, the family has told us they can always count on her and their mother sees Pat as a dear friend, much more than her caregiver.
Pat is very neutering and loving. She has stepped up to the plate many times and helped us out last minute for Emergency fill-ins. Her dedication to Hired Hands Homecare is very much appreciated! Pat is so outstanding that this is Pats SECOND time receiving Employee of the Month.
Pat – Thank YOU for all you do! You’re a Star!
We send a whole-hearted CONGRATS to Fermata, our outstanding Caregiver of the Month for April in Marin. Fermata has been working with Mrs P for over 2 years, providing around the clock home care and has done an AMAZING job. Her attention to detail in caring for Mrs. P is exemplary!
We are proud to have worked with Fermata for over 3 years now, as she has shined from day one. Fermata – a huge thanks for all you do!
Fermata has a can do attitude with a contagious smile on her face. The picture says it all!! Thank you Fermata!!
Hired Hands Homecare – Sonoma is proud to announce Audrey F. as their Caregiver of the Month for February 2014!
We have had the pleasure of working with Audrey since 2011. Below are just a few comments from the seniors she cares for, and their families:
“Carol told me that Audrey is AMAZING and that she was very pleased with her work!”
“During our home visit, Mrs. McC. told us that Audrey has been wonderful! She and Audrey were just about to take a walk to the pool and enjoy the sunshine when we arrived.”
“Gwen said that everything went fine with Audrey. ‘She’s very sweet, and we spent most of the time visiting. If my friend wasn’t paying for it, I don’t know if I would be getting the help, but for now I’m being pampered!’”
Audrey… THANKS so MUCH for taking such great … Read More »
Hired Hands Homecare is proud to announce that Jessica K. is our Employee of the Month for the Peace of Mind Program for February 2014!
Since starting with Hired Hands, Jessica has won over the hearts of our clients with her calm and easy going manner. She is always there to help out, and will go above and beyond the call of duty with every client. She has become an integral part of our facility team, and is looked on with great respect by co-workers and facility staff alike.
We think Jessica is one of the top caregivers in North Bay, CA. Thank you Jessica for all of your hard work! You’re a star!
Shirley has been with Hired Hands for over one year and brings with her Thirty Five years care giving experience! She always has a smile on her face and brings positive energy when she walks into a room. She really enjoys giving back to her clients and making them feel good about themselves. Shirley is an excellent cook and has shared her delicious home made cooking with many of her clients. Shirley is very compassionate as well as intuitive and stays tuned in to our clients needs and well being. Shirley was very excited to receive Employee of the Month Award and said it felt so good to know that she is appreciated.
We’re honored to announce Dony T. as Marin’ s Caregiver of the Month for March 2014! Dony has shined since day one back in 2012, when he first joined the Hired Hands Team. Dony has a real “go getter” attitude and truly focuses on compassion and detailed care when it comes to his work with our clients.
Hired Hands Homecare is proud to be a long time supporter of Senior Access. This stellar organization provides amazing day programs and respite for families dealing with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and memory loss. Recently, they commented that “Dony is one of the best Hired Hands Caregivers we’ve ever had. His willingness to help our members is greatly appreciated and all our members at Senior Access absolutely love working with him.”
Thank you Dony for providing such a high standard of care, and keep up the GREAT … Read More »
Marvin “Ken” J. started with Hired Hands Pleasanton November 2013. He is currently working with 2 clients and is remarkable!!! One client resides at an Alzheimer’s and Dementia Care Center and the staff there have noticed a great change in the client since Ken started. They recently said “We are so pleased to have Ken. He is a gem, and she is really happy. Thank you so much for sending him to us”.
Thank you Ken for all you do!
This week, an interesting story aired on NPR regarding how researchers are discovering how different types of light affect people. What’s most impressive is how they’re using their findings, and applying them to help seniors and people with Alzheimer’s and Dementia. Both the interview and the transcript can be found here.
Drum roll please…! This February, we are proud to tip our hats to Ms. Ann N!
Ann exemplifies dedication and devotion! We have had the honor of working with Ann for over 6 years, and during that time, she had been dedicated to the same client! Of course… the family absolutely adores Ann, and says that their mother would not be where she is without Ann, their “Mother Hen”. One of the most important components of Ann’s job with this particular client is helping her remain active in the community, escorting her to social gatherings, and to her daily pool exercises. Ann cares a great deal for the clients she works with – always putting their safety and well being first.
This is actually Ann’s second time wearing the honor of Employee of the Month… and she definitely deserves BOTH awards! Ann, … Read More »
On February 4, 2014 Erin Winter received an outstanding Certificate of Appreciation and Recognition from the City Council of Dublin, for the support Hired Hands Homecare provides to the amazing City of Dublin Senior Center.
Hired Hands is dedicated to involvement in the communities we serve and honored to have the opportunity to support the seniors of the Tri-Valley through sponsorship of the Dublin Senior Center. This senior center creates a warm environment and enriching activities and social interaction for approximately 200 seniors per day and is a shining example of community support and engagement of its senior population.
We’re so proud of our involvement in the community, and look very forward to the opportunity to support seniors and families throughout Dublin, Pleasanton, and the Tri-Valley area.
A BIG Congrats and Thank You goes out to Sofia, our Caregiver of the Month in our Pleasanton office for February 2014!
We have had the pleasure of working with Sofia since September 2013. She is currently working with 2 clients; one of which has Dementia and is currently on Hospice. The client’s daughter-in-law states “I feel like Sophia is my partner. She is just a GEM! Whenever something is going on with my mother-in-law, I ask Sofia her opinion and she is always spot on with mine. She is such a gift!”
Sofia, we are THRILLED to have you on our TEAM! Many Thanks for all you do! Your impact on our clients and their families is greatly appreciated!
Hired Hands Homecare has had the pleasure of working with Racy since 2002. In the past twelve plus years, she has done an outstanding job for so many of our clients. Racy is extremely compassionate, caring, carries a terrific up beat attitude, but most of all has a big heart. We thank you for all your hard and dedicated work. It is an Honor to have her on our Team!
Thanks everyone for all your donations and kindness in helping our countrymen.
Thanks Erin for coordinating this effort; thanks Michelle for being a herald to make this known and moving.
Since the very first time we’ve heard of this devastation, my friends and I have been praying for people like all of you to reach out to. My friends who personally visited and handed our donations in all forms (monetary and the like) could not control their tears/emotions for what they have seen. Our one time plan of them flying to Tacloban and vicinities was immediately changed to several trips. Our fund raising overflowed and assistance they were able to provide did not just end in distributing the donations but in personally cooking and feeding several families.
This is all because of kind-hearted people like you.
Again, thank you and God Bless.
As many of you know, we have the honor of working with many amazing people of Philippine descent on a regular basis. We hope and pray for their families well-being after the devastating typhoon. In hopes of helping, we have connected with an intricate network who are providing much needed resources where they are needed most. We are amazed and overwhelmed with everyone’s generosity in their donations thus far, and wanted everyone to know that every item is truly being put to good use. Below is a bit if recent dialog in regards to the needs, and the help that we together are contributing.
You are an angel! Thank you so much for your support, and your unending generosity and kindness.
I just got back from a trip last … Read More »
Hired Hands Homecare – Santa Rosa is proud to award Debra M. our Caregiver of the Month for January 2014! Recently, we made a surprise home visit during her shift with Gloria B. to present her award. Debra has worked for us since February of 2012. She is a natural leader and creates a special bond with the clients she cares for. Some recent comments about Debra, and the care she provides:
“Karen said that Debra was very pleasant and she feels Debra will be a great match for her parents.”
“You couldn’t have sent over a more perfect person to help Judy! I was amazed at how much she had gotten done in the short time that she’s been there. Debbie is a wonderful caregiver and is perfectly suited for helping Judy!”
“Thanks for sending such great caregivers! Debbie went … Read More »
Obed has been with Hired Hands Homecare since June 2013 and has been a phenomenal caregiver who has simply SHINED from day one, going above and beyond the call of duty. Obed simply never says …No! Thank you for all you do and especially for your constant compassion that you bring every day!
Alicia has been with Hired Hands Homecare since September 2013,and has recently been working with one of our Live-In Clients. A recent compliment she received from her current client is that “she completes me; if I stumble in a conversation or on word she knows exactly what I am trying to say”.
Alicia is very aware and makes sure to note any concerns right away and will even call the office when she is not on shift to check in and make sure her Client is doing well.
She deserves this award 10 fold! Alicia….We are so EXCITED to have you on our TEAM! Many Thanks for all you do!
“… I am grateful to you for being willing to continue the effortful process as needed. Like HHI taking care of taxes and benefits, it is a Hired Hands service that is important to me—an example of why I choose to arrange elder care through an agency. Since I work, I am already stretched to handle finances for my husband and myself plus administer my parents’ estate.
With gratitude, all the best wishes to you and the Winter family for the New Year 2014.”
January 09, 2014
Gladys has been with Hired Hands Homecare for over 3 years. Each and every client she has worked for has not only loved her, but considered her to be part of the family. A recent compliment she received from her current client is that “She walks on water”, and that “her smile lights up the room and brings my mother joy every day.”
Gladys is very dedicated to her clients. She is hard working and definitely deserves this award. Gladys… THANK YOU so much for all you do!
“I was using another agency and they were not able to provide the care that was required. Hired Hands was suggested by the Alzheimer’s facility where my mother-in-law was in.
The caregiver has a perfect personality to handle my mother. She is very calm and soothing and she is able to cope with my mother in-law. She is really good about observing my mom’s actions and how to calm her down before things get really bad.
They are providing all the care that was promised and that I asked for, and I have already recommended Hired Hands twice for home care.”
A BIG Thank You for everyone who came out in Napa on Oct. 5 to celebrate seniors and support quality senior care! A very good time had by all!
Our latest Employee of the Month is Joanna B! Joanna is a highly skilled caregiver who began working for us in April of 2013. She is calm, focused and proactive; a natural leader! Joanna has been our ‘go-to’ caregiver for challenging 24 hour live-in cases.
“I called Mrs. Green to check in and find out how Joanna has been working out. She told me Joanna has been great and that she has been doing an excellent job!”
“During our conversation, Jim told me, ‘Joanna is really on it! She is caring, proactive and works really well with Mom.’”
“Lynn told me her mother-in-law thought all of her caregivers so far have been great, but that Joanna was her favorite and made her feel the most safe and comfortable.”
Joanna – thanks so much for all you do!
The Hired Hands Team
The latest ROCKSTAR out of the Santa Rosa branch of Hired Hands is Tanya W! Tanya is a highly skilled CNA who began working for just a few short months ago. Since then, literally EVERY client she has worked with has asked for her to return, and one client was so impressed that they increased their hours of care! Tanya has a big heart, wonderful personality and her charm can put a smile on anyone’s face. Some recent feedback from clients:
“George-Ann called to say what a gem Tanya is! Tanya got done in one day what normally takes two. George-Ann LOVES Tanya and wants her back every time!”
“Tanya has been working very well with Olivia! She’s super!”
Tanya… we SALUTE you, and all you do!
California is facing two legislative issues that, if passed, stand to force dramatic changes to the way private-pay homecare services are delivered to the elderly and disabled. Under the guise of “consumer safety” and “employee protection,” special interests have put forth proposals that will create new expensive government bureaucracies and impose exorbitant fees on providers and homecare clients—including some of our society’s most vulnerable citizens.
We and the Homecare industry majority favor some form of government oversight to ensure quality care and access for all. The current legislative proposals, AB 241 & AB 1217, overreach and jeopardize access to care and threaten the jobs of thousands of caregivers. At Hired Hands Homecare, we feel it important to reach out and inform as many people as possible of the negative impacts if these proposals pass. Join our push for a better solution by following … Read More »
Lynn Winter, CEO
Lynn Winter founded Hired Hands Inc. in 1994 and is currently the CEO. Lynn is a Registered Nurse and has been in the Homecare industry since 1980, an amazing 31 years that flew by with lightening like speed. Prior to starting Hired Hands, she was the Senior Vice President of Business Development for an international home healthcare company, having been promoted from Nursing Director of a single branch office swiftly up through the corporate ranks.
Her life long desire was to create a homecare company where both employees and clients alike felt they were # 1 and that their goals and needs were of primary importance. She attributes the success of Hired Hands to her son and daughter’s intense involvement along with the amazing professional and dedicated team of internal staff members and caregivers who function every moment with … Read More »
Mark Winter, President
Mark grew up in the Midwest surrounded by two things: home health care, and marketing. With a mother running large national and international home healthcare agencies, and a father immersed in branding and marketing, it was only fitting that he would pursue and earn a degree in Business Administration. It was serendipitous that he returned to the States after some extensive international travels, just as his mother Lynn was jumping out of the corporate world to start her own senior care agency. A partnership was born!
Now, almost Twenty years later, Mark, Lynn and Erin continue working together day in and day out to provide not only the absolute best senior care services in our community, while also being the employer of choice for their amazing team of compassionate Caregivers. In his spare time, you’ll find him on his … Read More »
Some of Erin’s earliest childhood memories are of going on pro bono home health visits in rural North Carolina with her mom Lynn, then a home health RN. Erin learned the profound effects that an extra touch, attention, a smile and hug have on elderly home-bound patients. She also learned the wisdom they can impart to us when we take the time to listen.
Flash forward 20 years and Erin, Mark and Lynn are captaining their own homecare company and making a positive difference in people’s lives everyday, including our clients, their families, and our invaluable caregivers. Erin is honored to have assisted thousands of families in navigating the often complex and difficult journey of eldercare.
Learning from and helping each individual she encounters is Erin’s passion. She has stayed very involved in the local healthcare community: long time leader of the … Read More »
Hired Hands has chosen Elissa B as our Employee of the Month for our Peace of Mind program! Elissa is consistent in her duties, is outgoing and bubbly, she is always willing to take an extra shift when we’re in a pickle, and has even been a great caregiver for some of our traditional in-home clients. She takes her work seriously and does a great job following our protocol!
~Carol G commented- “Elissa is always cheerful and upbeat when ever I get to see her. I know that my mom enjoys her company when she is there too. She does what she is asked without any gripe!”
“I am a psychologist and I would have an issue if they weren’t as competent as they are. I just feel that they are fully attentive. I have a mother who has been aging in front of my eyes. I got very involved in the senior care community. I liked the representative from Hired Hands and the people who gave me the nod that they were very good. When they first showed up, I was very impressed. They are highly professional, friendly and personal. I have already recommended the agency. I made a call and they stepped in and made the whole process easy for me, was seamless!“ (MT, February 2013 HC Pulse report)
As we age, everyone gets forgetful now and then. Just the other day, I misplaced my keys. Sometimes, memory loss starts to become more frequent, disrupting life on a daily basis. This may be a sign of Alzheimer’s, or some sort of dementia, and these warning signs may be a good reason to check in with your doctor. The NorCal Alzheimer’s Association has a great set of tools at http://www.alz.org/alzheimers_disease_10_signs_of_alzheimers.asp.