Medications


Take These Steps to Avoid Overmedication and Adverse Medication Reactions in Seniors

Taking too much or too little of a medication or taking it the wrong way can lead to adverse medication reactions in seniors.

The days of “take two aspirin and call me in the morning” have morphed into “take two of these…and two of these…and maybe one of those, too!” Nearly forty percent of seniors are taking at least five different prescription medications each day – not to mention vitamins, supplements, and OTC meds. It is easy to understand why overmedication and adverse medication reactions in seniors are extremely common.

Take these actions to avoid medication problems for someone you love:

Make a list, and check it twice. Create a list of every one of the medications – both over-the-counter and prescription – that the person is currently taking. Share the list with all of their healthcare providers, and … Read More »



Understanding Chemo Brain and Its Effects

Chemo brain can last for months or even years after treatment has ended.

Memory lapses, confusion, and difficulty concentrating—these symptoms could easily be attributed to Alzheimer’s, but for cancer survivors, there’s another likely culprit: chemotherapy. Referred to as chemotherapy induced cognitive impairment (CICI) or “chemo brain,” these effects can linger for months or even years after treatment concludes. It’s not exclusive to chemotherapy recipients, either; radiation, surgery, hormonal treatments, and even the cancer itself can contribute to cognitive challenges, complicating effective treatment.

Exploring the Complexity:

Dr. Kevin Liou from the Bendhaim Integrative Medicine Center at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center emphasizes that cancer-related cognitive impairment is a multifaceted issue with various contributing factors. This complexity means that chemo brain can manifest at any point during or after cancer treatment, presenting symptoms like difficulty multitasking, reading comprehension issues, word-finding … Read More »



How to Overcome Sleeping Problems in Dementia

Try these tips to help someone experiencing sleeping problems in dementia get a better night’s rest.

If it seems like a senior with dementia has completely rewritten the rules on when and how to sleep, you’re not dreaming. For reasons that aren’t yet fully understood, sleeping problems in dementia are quite common. Changes to the senior’s circadian rhythm lead to drowsy days and sleepless nights.

The development of the disease is one contributing factor. Damage to brain cells causes increased weakness, making everyday tasks and activities exhausting. Medication side effects from commonly-prescribed dementia treatments can further exacerbate the issue.

Why Is a Good Night’s Sleep Crucial for a Loved One with Alzheimer’s?

Decreased sleep quality in dementia may bring about an increase in restlessness and delusions, and can cause serious safety concerns, such as the potential for an … Read More »



What’s the Best Flu Vaccine for Older Adults?

Learn about the best flu vaccine for older adults and make sure the seniors you love are protected.

While COVID-19 continues to dominate our overall health concerns, it’s important to keep in mind that other illnesses can be equally as dangerous, especially for older adults. Flu season is upon us, and it’s time to make sure that the seniors you love are protected. This starts with knowing the best flu vaccine for older adults.



How to Tell the Difference Between Dementia and Medication Side Effects

With so many similarities, can you tell the difference between dementia and medication side effects?

Disorientation. Confusion. Memory loss. While these are certainly hallmark symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia, they may also come about from taking certain medications. Before automatically assuming an inevitable diagnosis of dementia, review the following list of prescribed medicines that can cause similar adverse effects in order to help tell the difference between dementia and medication side effects.



The Increase in Senior Falls From Medications and How You Can Prevent Them

Studies are showing an increase in senior falls from medications, making it imperative to know what to do to reduce fall risk.

We’ve known for a while that there are certain medications that raise the likelihood of falls for seniors. Twenty years ago, a little over half of seniors were impacted by that risk; yet today, that number has increased dramatically – to a staggering 94% of older adults who are now in danger of senior falls from medications. Additionally, deaths from such falls are happening at more than twice the earlier rate.

Researchers who observed this growing concern also discovered that between 1999 and 2017, senior prescriptions for medications that escalate fall risk were filled more than 7.8 billion times. This consists of a spike from 12 million antidepressants in 1999 to greater than 52 million in … Read More »



Warning: These Common Medications May Increase Dementia Risk

Certain medications may now be linked to an increased dementia risk.

They are currently recognized to cause various short-term side-effects, for example, memory issues and confusion, but new research links some of the stronger anticholinergic drugs (like those prescribed for Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy, depression, and overactive bladder) to a markedly higher dementia risk. 

The research involved two groups of seniors: 59,000 patients with dementia, and 225,000 without. Approximately 57% of those with dementia, and 51% without, were supplied a minimum of one (and up to six) potent anticholinergic medications. Considering other established dementia risk factors, the outcomes were an astounding 50% increased risk of dementia in individuals who were taking strong anticholinergics daily for three or more years, with the highest risk to people who received a dementia diagnosis before age 80.

It is critical to note that … Read More »



How to Empower Seniors to Take Control for Better Chronic Health Care

Seniors know best what they’re dealing with; empower them to take control of their chronic health care needs.

When it comes to chronic health care, seniors are the experts, hands down, with up to three out of four seniors affected by a number of conditions that are ongoing, necessitate long-term medical treatment, and place restrictions on activities. With the never-ending barrage of bloodwork as well as other tests, physicians’ appointments and procedures, and medications, managing chronic diseases usually takes both a physical and emotional toll, and may quickly become daunting.

Dr. Mary Tinetti, chief of geriatrics and internist at Yale School of Medicine, said, “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 … Read More »



How To Encourage Doctor Visits for Seniors

Learn how to help a reluctant senior follow through with doctors’ visits.

Let’s face it: a lot of us delay going to the doctor’s office. It could be somewhat uncomfortable, and downright distressing when something is wrong and we’re looking at the prospect of an unwanted diagnosis. Even so, we understand it’s wise to complete what’s best for our health and wellbeing and to be diligent about receiving necessary medical care. 



Health Risks Of Ibuprofen and Naproxen

As we grow older, most of us develop aches and pains. Sometimes we overlook the pain and get on with life, but other times soreness and pain interfere with our activities. But rather than simply swallowing a few pain pills from your medicine cabinet, you should know about recent FDA warnings about the health risks of ibuprofen and naproxen. 

These over-the-counter pain relievers, sold under various brand names, such as Advil, Motrin, and Aleve, can be quite helpful. But as with any medicines, prescription or over-the-counter, they must be taken with caution, particularly because the FDA has confirmed that these have a hidden danger.

Although the FDA has long warned that nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) may potentially boost the danger of heart disease and stroke, the wording of this warning has been modified to reflect a more serious nature, … Read More »






Contact Us to Learn More!

Want to find out more about our senior care in California and how it can improve safety, comfort, and independence at home? Contact us at (866) 940-4343 to request a free in-home consultation to learn more about our customized care solutions in Novato, Pleasanton, Santa Rosa, Napa, Sonoma, and the surrounding areas.


From Our Blog:

Click on any of the posts to the left to explore our blogposts. Thanks for visiting!

Ring the Bell for Maribel!

The Hired Hands Homecare team is proud to celebrate Maribel as our most recent Caregiver of the Month!

We have had the absolute pleasure of...

The Health Concerns That Could Be Causing Chronic Negativity in an Older Loved One

If you’re noticing chronic negativity in an older loved one, there may be a medical condition to blame.

We all have good...

Improve Memory With These Simple Strategies

Help improve memory for someone you love with dementia with these proven tactics.

Remember memorizing the order of the colors of the...