Health


Avoid a Hospital Visit for the Seniors You Love This Holiday Season With These Tips

While we may envision a Norman Rockwell-worthy Thanksgiving celebration, with the whole family enjoying quality time together and Grandma’s traditional feast, the reality for many families includes something unexpected: a hospital visit. In fact, statistics show that E/R visits for the elderly jump an astounding 10 – 20% during the holidays.

While pinpointing the exact reasoning behind this increase is difficult, it stands to reason that one factor could be family members who haven’t spent time with an elderly relative in the months prior to the holiday season, only to discover then that his or her condition has deteriorated.

Dr. Tamara Kuittinen of Lenox Hill Hospital explains, “It’s an issue of out of sight, out of mind for many people. If you haven’t seen your mom in six months, you may not be fully aware of the aging … Read More »



The Power Foods That Combat Stress During the Holidays – And How Home Care Can Help

As much joy as the holiday season brings, there’s also often an overwhelming level of stress, particularly for busy family caregivers who are already stretched thin. The additional responsibilities of shopping, baking, attending parties and events, and so much more can make it difficult to feel that all is calm and bright!

At Hired Hands Homecare, the top providers of elder care in Marin and the surrounding areas, it’s our goal to partner with families to provide the dependable, professional care services that help restore a healthy life balance – even (and especially!) during the hectic pace of the holidays. One of the many ways we can help is through planning and preparing nutritious meals for seniors, and when stress levels are elevated, including these types of foods has been shown to help.

Whole grains. A great source of serotonin … Read More »



5 Tips from the Marina, CA Home Care Specialists on Managing Diabetes During the Holidays

The holidays are the perfect time to reconnect with family and friends, but let’s be honest: it’s often also a time for overindulgence in unhealthy food choices. With a variety of rich, fatty, and sugary delicacies offered at every turn, it’s difficult to follow a healthy diet, which can result in significant health concerns for individuals with diabetes.



New Guidelines and Recommendations for Diabetes Management

Important new diabetes management guidelines for seniors from the Endocrine Society.

The latest guidelines from the Endocrine Society concerning diabetes management and the elderly are unexpected, to say the least: lower blood sugar isn’t always best. And for individuals who’ve been maintaining a routine of finger pricks, insulin injections, and keeping careful track of food intake, this alteration may be a bit hard to swallow.

Known as de-intensification, geriatricians are now often taking the strategy with older adults that the benefits to be attained by aiming for rigid blood sugar control are not outweighing the health risks inherent with aging and illness. When A1c and blood sugar levels are held at low levels in the elderly, for instance, it may possibly result in an increased frequency of hypoglycemia and also kidney failure.

With up to one in … Read More »



Tips for Seniors: Embracing Life in Spite of a Chronic Disease Diagnosis

A chronic disease diagnosis doesn’t mean an end to finding joy in life.

Have you ever gotten out of bed and said, “It’s probably going to be one of those days!” Perhaps your alarm didn’t go off, the hot water heater decided to stop working, and the dog chewed up one of your favorite shoes overnight. Then imagine if every day were “one of those days!” For an individual living with a chronic disease (and that’s much of the elderly population), routine struggles and challenges can be a given.

However, there are many steps that older adults can take to realize and maintain a life of joy, even in the face of a chronic disease diagnosis. For instance:

Follow passions. Discovering purpose and meaning in each day is essential – and possible. Many seniors find gratification in assisting … Read More »



Napa Senior Living: Setting Personal Medical Care Goals When Facing Chronic Conditions

Setting medical care goals is beneficial when facing chronic conditions.

When it comes to chronic diseases, the elderly are usually the experts, hands down, with as many as three out of four older persons impacted by several conditions that are ongoing, necessitate extensive medical treatment, and put limits on activities. With the continuous barrage of bloodwork as well as other tests, doctors’ appointments and procedures, and medications, managing chronic conditions usually takes both a physical and emotional toll, and may very quickly become overwhelming.

Dr. Mary Tinetti, chief of geriatrics and internist at Yale School of Medicine, states, “Once you get three, four, or five and six diseases, several things happen: Number one, almost guaranteed, trying to get one of these diseases under control is going to make one of the other diseases worse. Number two: The more … Read More »



Accepting a Chronic Disease Diagnosis Is Beneficial for Seniors and Their Family Members

Facing a chronic disease diagnosis head-on does not mean giving up.

In Isaac Asimov’s opinion, “The easiest way to solve a problem is to deny it exists.” It’s a standard feeling for many family caregivers when their loved one is faced with a chronic disease diagnosis, such as dementia. Even though this can instill some measure of comfort in thinking that life can carry on like it always has, if only we don’t acknowledge this new reality, the truth is that acknowledgement is extremely important in order to get the necessary support.

It is understandable for a family member to wish to deliver all of the care a senior loved one needs. Nevertheless, frequently in the crux of denial are feelings of guilt, helplessness, and in some cases incompetence in the ability to “fix things.” And you will … Read More »



6 Tips to Try When Chemotherapy Affects Appetite

Chemotherapy can impact a person’s appetite, but these tips can help.

Eating healthy is especially crucial for those undergoing chemotherapy or another type of cancer treatment, but one of the major side effects preventing patients from eating well is a change in how foods taste. It’s important to overcome this and other obstacles to healthy eating in order to maintain the strength needed for chemotherapy treatments and protect against infections. Eating a balanced diet may even help cancer patients better manage higher doses of certain types of medications.

When experiencing challenges with taste changes that interfere with adhering to a recommended dietary plan during cancer treatment, the following cancer nutrition tips from Hired Hands Homecare, providers of the the best senior care Santa Rosa, CA seniors need, can help:

Experiment with different food temperatures. For some people … Read More »



Snake Venom Could Open New Treatments for Cancer

Posted on October 22nd, by Mark Winter in Aging, Cancer, Health, Medical News, Senior Health, Senior Independence, Technology. No Comments

Learn how snake venom could possible provide treatment for cancer patients.

Besides helping to manage our mouse and rodent population, it may be hard to think of anything beneficial about snakes – especially poisonous ones. Yet there may be a surprising silver lining to slithery serpents: innovative new treatments for cancer.

Just ask Steve MacKessy of the University of Northern Colorado. He’s been collecting and studying snake venom for decades, freeze-drying the venom to retain its properties. He still works with samples gathered as many as 40 years ago, sharing, “A lot of other protein drugs are inherently unstable, but venoms in particular are designed to be stable under bad conditions.”

Because the toxins in the venom bind very specifically to the receptors of its prey, they have the potential to target only the cancer cells themselves, unlike … Read More »



The Best Cancer Care: Being There

Sometimes, the best cancer care is knowing how to be a good friend.

Receiving a diagnosis of cancer is life-altering, and having a strong support system is crucial. When a friend or loved one is undergoing cancer care, you may feel at a loss as to how to provide the best support, without overstepping boundaries or causing the person any undue stress. These steps, courtesy of Hired Hands Homecare, the best elderly care Napa has to offer, are a great place to start.

Be present. Find out the best times to visit the person with cancer, and then simply be there, to listen, talk, and even laugh together when appropriate, which can bring a breath of fresh air to someone looking to maintain a sense of normalcy.
Bring a treat. The effects of chemotherapy and radiation can cause exhaustion, making it … Read More »