Senior Independence


Overcome These Common Obstacles to Family Caregivers and Seniors Using Technology

Seniors and their family seem to want to use care technology solutions. Find out why they typically are not.

Today’s older adults are overrun with an explosion of hi-tech products focused on bettering their independence and safety and providing life enhancement. With the touch of a button or two, older adults can automatically visit “in person” with friends and family through Skype, wear a pendant that takes action with emergency help and support when necessary, and even remain safe from getting lost with specialized receptors attached to clothes or shoes. 

The issue becomes how to encourage older adults (and family members who care for them) to shift from a low-tech frame of mind to embracing all that’s available to them, something that is continually top of mind for us at Hired Hands Homecare. AARP reports that only 7% … Read More »



Seniors and Technology: The Perfect Match for These 5 Common Concerns

Seniors and technology are the perfect match when facing these issues.

Whether you are looking to tune a guitar, study a new language, or just add cats’ ears to a selfie, there is an app for that! And when it comes to seniors and technology, specifically when older adults choose to age in place at home, high-tech tools are often an extremely important component in increasing safety, comfort, and overall quality of life.

Take Amazon’s Alexa, as an example. Whereas its current benefits for seniors are numerous, such as the ability to track sugar levels, make doctor appointments, and research information related to a specific health issue, it’s actually poised to dig even further into the medical care arena – possibly even detecting heart attacks and helping doctors obtain precise diagnoses.

Here are a few additional technology … Read More »



Teaching Seniors Technology: Make Sure It’s Part of Any High-Tech Gift!

Teaching seniors technology is as important as giving high-tech care enhancing gifts.

More and more older adults are receiving high-tech gadgets as holiday gifts, for good reason: there are so many incredible benefits to enhance safety, socialization, and enjoyment. In fact, of those seniors who report using the Internet, a full 71 percent go online every day or most days, and another 11 percent are online between three and five times per week, per recent research from the Pew Research Center. And that same report revealed that seniors are more likely to own a tablet or e-reader than a smartphone.

Whether you give an older loved one a tablet, e-reader, or AARP’s new RealPad (made especially for older adults, with larger icons, fonts and around-the-clock live customer service), smart devices such as these are meant to make … Read More »



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 »



Post-Holiday Loneliness Can Be Devastating. Find Help for Lonely Seniors Here.

The holiday season can be filled with a whirlwind of activity for the seniors we love, with family gatherings, holiday parties, faith-based events and services, determining the ideal gifts for the ones they love, etc. However, after the holiday decorations are packed away and family members have resumed the everyday busyness of life, many seniors struggle with a prevalent but little-discussed concern: post-holiday loneliness.

Although naturally those who live alone are most susceptible to feelings of isolation and sadness when the holiday festivities are complete, all aging adults are susceptible to a case of the blues, as they look to the approaching year while reminiscing over years past. It’s crucial for family members to find help for lonely seniors that will encourage a positive transition. Give some thought to the following suggestions:

Start planning for the next gathering. Set a … 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.



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 chronic illness. For instance:

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