Thursday, May 31, 2012

North Carolina Home Care Law

The senior care professionals of Always Best Care of Chapel Hill and Durham uphold the standards and expectations set by state and federal laws. These laws, largely enforced by the North Carolina Division of Health Service Regulation (NC DHSR), are important in maintaining certified, trusted, reliable, and quality caregivers. Access to such caregivers is integral to a healthy population of seniors who would like to continue aging in place. For this reason, elder care professionals in the state of North Carolina are subject to a variety of rules and regulations that maintain a high level of care.

The elder care professionals at Always Best Care are chosen for their dedication to their clients, their compassion, and their belief that they are providing an important service to men and women who mean the world to their families. As a result, our senior care providers in Chapel Hill uphold these regulations proudly in an effort to offer the best senior care possible.
Here are some of the ways in which senior care professionals ensure that their clients receive the attention, compassion, and personalized care that they deserve.

  1. All senior care providers in the state of North Carolina must be licensed. This licensure follows certification courses that teach basic and more thorough senior care practices and skills. The care that professionals are able to provide (skilled or non-medical) depends upon their education and licensure.
  2. Background checks are performed on all senior care providers before they are hired. This ensures that patients receive care from individuals they can trust.
  3. Home care agencies are insured to protect against any damage or other issue that may arise. This protects both the business and the clients, as working within seniors' homes can present unique challenges.
  4. Home care agencies must follow the rules set by the NC DHSR. These rules are created to keep both senior care providers and elderly individuals safe. The DHSR has the power to take administrative action against any home care agency or individual provider that does not uphold its standards.
The goal of the DHSR is to keep North Carolina's elderly citizens safe. Senior care providers who uphold this organization's rules contribute to this achievement.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Hoarding and How To Declutter

Hoarding is a surprisingly common issue that caregivers face while providing elder care. Senior care providers in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, have assisted countless elderly individuals in cleaning their homes and removing unnecessary and dangerous items. When the home of a senior becomes overrun with clutter, it can pose a threat to their wellbeing—physically, mentally, and emotionally. For this reason, many senior care providers in the Chapel Hill area assist elderly individuals in de-cluttering their homes to create a safer, more comfortable living space.

Why is Hoarding Dangerous?
Hoarding is dangerous because it creates an unsafe living environment. With too many items in a home, walkways can become obstructed and seniors may trip and fall. Additionally, hoarding may impede efforts to maintain a clean environment. Mold and other dangerous consequences may occur under the right conditions.

How to Help Your Senior De-Clutter
Senior care services are meant to create a safer living environment for elderly individuals who reside in their own homes. Through senior care services, caregivers provide the security that these elderly individuals need to maintain their independence. Part of this responsibility requires maintaining a clean, safe home.

  • Talk to your loved one about their hoarding habits. Approach the topic sensitively, as this is often an emotional habit and seniors frequently attach sentimental value to the items they collect.
  • When de-cluttering the home, take the project room by room. This will help keep your senior from becoming overwhelmed by the process.
  • Make three piles for each room: items that are to be kept, items that are to be thrown away, and items that are to be donated. Remove these piles as quickly as possible in order to keep your senior from having second thoughts about the items that are being removed from the house.
  • Finish each room before moving onto the next so that your elderly loved one can see the progress you are achieving. This may act as motivation to continue cleaning the rest of the house.
Hoarding is a problem that is more common than many people think. Senior care professionals in Chapel Hill know that de-cluttering the homes of elderly individuals is important in keeping them safe. If you need assistance with this task, senior care providers are available to help.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Managing Incontinence

Incontinence is a condition that can strike at any age, but it is true that elderly individuals suffer from this issue more often than other populations. As a result, senior care professionals must often help manage incontinence while providing elder care services. This task may seem very difficult to complete, as it is often embarrassing for both elderly individuals and their caregivers; however, it is possible to manage incontinence successfully. The key is open communication with your senior, which will help you determine the cause of the problem and how to best address it.

Jamie, who cares for her mother in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, has learned that managing incontinence is an easier task than she once imagined. Once her mother began having difficulties making it to the restroom in time, Jamie talked to her about the challenges she was facing. Here are some tips to help you speak to your elderly loved one about incontinence, and some suggestions for better managing this problem.
Open, Honest Communication

  • Remember that this is a sensitive topic, so approach the issue in a gentle manner. Do not accuse or blame your senior, simply ask if there are any specific problems keeping them from making it to the restroom.
  • Ask your elderly loved one if you can do anything to make it easier for them to get to the restroom in time.
  • If the issue is not easily managed, talk to your loved one about setting a doctor’s appointment to determine if a medical issue is causing the condition.
Managing Incontinence in the Home

  • Make sure that the bathroom is accessible to your elderly loved one. Clear any debris or furniture that may obstruct the path to the restroom.
  • If your elderly loved one has difficulties walking, rearrange furniture to make it less of a hassle for them to go. For example, move the couch from the far side of the living room closer to the bathroom so the distance is not as great.
  • Take advantage of safety items, such as raised toilets and toilet seats.
After speaking with her mother, Jamie has been able to manage her incontinence successfully. If you need some guidance in this matter, remember that senior care professionals are always available to help.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Choosing a Home Care Provider

As a caregiver to your elderly loved one, it is important that you make the right decisions pertaining to their health and safety. In many cases, the best course of action is to hire a home care agency that can assist with the care giving process. But how are you to know which home care agencies you can trust and which ones will best meet your senior’s needs?

Joe lives in Durham, North Carolina, where he takes care of his grandmother, Nellie. Joe has provided elder care for Nellie for several years, but she simply needs more care than he can provide. In order to keep his job and keep Nellie safe during the day, Joe has decided to hire a home care agency. Through this agency, he and Nellie will benefit from the personalized attention of trained and qualified elder care professionals.
While choosing which home care agency to hire, Joe had to consider several different factors. Here are some of the things he found helpful when picking Nellie’s home care provider:
  • All of the senior care professionals should be qualified. This means they should be properly educated, trained, certified, and experienced.
  • You want a home care agency that you can trust. Client and patient recommendations are a wonderful place to start your search for reliable professionals.
  • Clear communication is crucial in developing a great relationship with your elder care providers. Make sure that the agencies you are considering are forthcoming with information and able to quickly answer any and all of your questions.
  • Senior care is about more than simply maintaining a safe home—it is a form of companionship that will benefit your elderly loved one physically, mentally, and emotionally. For this reason, it is important that you choose an elder care provider who is cheerful and gets along well with your senior.
  • Trust your intuition and never choose based upon cost. Paying a bit more for a better level of service is worth it in the long run.
  • Consider the opinions of your elderly loved one when making this decision. Ensure that they are comfortable with the home care agency that is chosen.
Joe and Nellie are both much happier now that they benefit from home care professionals. These tips should help you choose the best senior care provider available.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

The Importance of Sleep

Getting a good night’s rest is crucial in waking up feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. This is particularly important for elderly individuals, as the benefits that sleep provides can actually improve some of the health conditions that seniors often face.
Many home care professionals will encourage seniors to get at least eight hours of sleep each night. The senior care professionals who provide their services to Maya in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, recommended that she get a solid night’s sleep after she began to feel tired and stressed. For two weeks, Maya worked on setting herself to a healthy sleep schedule and, by the time her body was used to the routine, she began to feel healthier, more relaxed, and more rested when she awoke each morning.
Here are some of the benefits that a good night’s sleep can provide:
  1. Physical Recovery: As you sleep, the cells of your body are able to recover from the damage they have sustained over the course of the day.
  2. Heart Health: Sleeping reduces inflammation and stress, which are linked to heart disease and even strokes. As a result, a good night’s sleep can assist in the management of blood pressure and cholesterol.
  3. Stress Reduction: Sleep can also help lower stress hormones and help you feel more relaxed.
  4. Improved Memory: When sleep deprived, you may feel a mental fog that makes it extremely difficult to remember things. For elderly individuals who suffer from memory loss, this side effect of insufficient sleep can prove extremely worrisome. By getting enough sleep, seniors allow their brains the time they need to organize their memories.
  5. Weight Management: Getting the proper amount of sleep each night allows your body to regulate the hormones that affect appetite and weight.
  6. Decrease in Risk of Diabetes: Without enough sleep, your body may start to process glucose improperly, which can lead to type 2 diabetes.
  7. Improved Mood Disorders: A great night’s sleep can ward off agitation and moodiness, as well as the depression and anxiety associated with insufficient sleep.
If your senior isn’t sleeping well, call on the expertise of elder care providers to assist in creating healthy sleep habits.

Monday, May 14, 2012

The Importance of Routines for Seniors

Sticking to a routine means having a set schedule each and every day. From the time you wake up to the time you go to sleep, a routine allows you to know what you have planned and what to expect. Some people may find that their busy lifestyles do not allow for a daily routine, but such a schedule is extremely important for elderly individuals. The seniors living in Durham, North Carolina, are looked after by elder care professionals who understand the benefits that routines provide to individuals who are aging in place.

A daily routine offers a level of stability that elderly individuals often enjoy, as it allows them to settle into a schedule that they understand. Many seniors do not like surprises, and having a routine allows them to anticipate and plan for what the day holds.

Stress-Free Environment
By setting a schedule, senior care professionals can alleviate the stresses associated with care giving for both themselves and elderly individuals. Changing a routine can be met with resistance, which can cause stress and, if severe, even mental or emotional damage to seniors. To reduce the chances of causing this high degree of stress, elder care professionals recommend setting a routine and sticking to it.

Memory Loss
Seniors who suffer from memory loss may constantly find themselves disoriented, wondering where they are and how they got there. This is particularly true of elderly individuals who suffer from Alzheimer’s disease. By creating a routine, you can create a secure environment in which they can feel safe. Although this will not bring their memory back, it is much easier to cope with memory loss in a steady atmosphere than a tumultuous one.

Staying Involved
Although a routine is wonderful, it is important to allow seniors to maintain a certain amount of control over their lives. For example, allowing them to pick a new restaurant, choose what they want to do with a block of free time, etc. can allow the routine to work for both caregivers and seniors.

Your elderly loved one will benefit from a routine because it will provide a stable environment; however, it is important to honor your senior’s independence and remember that you are there to help them live their life—not make every decision for them.