Author Archives: Choice Health Management Blogger

What to Do When Your Parent Exhibits Aggressive Behavior As a Result of Alzheimer’s

At Choice Health Management, we cater to a wide variety of aging-related needs. Because of this, we’ve seen our fair share of behaviors caused by Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. Among them is the sudden aggression or anger that seems to arise from nowhere. Today, we’re going to give you tips on what to do when your elderly parent exhibits such behavior:

  • Understand that they’re not acting this way on purpose. Remind yourself of this several times if you need to.
  • Don’t become emotional. This can be difficult to do, but the best way to respond is to speak in a soft, slow tone.
  • Address the immediate cause. Is there something that triggered the behavior? Physical discomfort can often cause it, but sometimes an unfamiliar surrounding or situation can do that as well.
  • Avoid environments where they will be surrounded by too many people, loud noises or excessive clutter. This can overwhelm a person with Alzheimer’s and cause them to react violently.
  • Divert their attention away from the activity or situation that may have caused the outburst.
  • Don’t give complicated directions or instructions, or ask too many questions. Those with Alzheimer’s can be easily confused, and this confusion can lead to an outburst.
  • Reasoning with your parent might not be the best option. Instead, say what you need to in order to make them feel safe or reassured. So, if they are demanding to go home, don’t tell them they already are home. Instead, explain that they can’t leave right at that moment because the weather or traffic is bad.
  • If your parent is in a safe place, it might be best for you to walk away for a little while.

 

It’s not easy to watch your parents grapple with a disease like Alzheimer’s, and even harder to know how to react when your parent exhibits bad behavior. Keep these tips in mind the next time you visit mom or dad, and hopefully you can steer the visit into a positive one!

4 Ways To Observe Men’s Health Month

June is Men’s Health Month and Choice Health Management is bringing you pertinent information about men’s health and what you can do to improve your health during this month. Get moving this month to work towards a healthier lifestyle.

  1. Schedule a Doctor’s Appointment– As age increases, so does your risk for different chronic diseases. A yearly checkup is important to lowering your risk for health problems.
  2. Limit Stress– Stress can heighten your risk for many health issues, so if you can find a way to tame the stress, your health will be better off. Find ways to cope with your stress, whether it’s through exercise or meditation, taming your stress can keep you healthy.
  3. Sleep Better– What’s better than a good night’s sleep? Getting enough sleep is important to your overall health because it provides energy for the next day. Insufficient amount of sleep is directly correlated with a number of chronic diseases, including some cancers. If you have trouble sleeping, it could be a sign of Obstructive Sleep Apnea. Schedule an appointment with your doctor if you suspect you have this condition.
  4. Exercise More– Performing exercises on a daily basis doesn’t have to happen at the gym. Any physical activity is good to getting your blood pumping and metabolism moving. Jog around the neighborhood, play fetch with your canine friend or do some yard work for physical activity. Aim to get in at least 30 minutes of physical activity each day. If you can get to the gym for exercise, great. If not, plan physical activity into your daily routines to keep your health moving.

Choice Health Management wishes you a happy Men’s Health Month and we encourage you to find motivation to become a better you! Contact us today for more information or assistance on healthier and safer living.

FAQ: How Assisted Living Can Benefit Your Loved One

With each year, there are new opportunities to create treasured memories with the people that are close to your heart. However, the passage of time can also bring obstacles for your aging loved ones. The possibility of injuries, accidents, and isolation present potential threats to their well-being and overall health. To combat these key concerns, Choice Health Management is ready to break down the myths of assisted living so that you can get the best possible care for the people that matter most.

Q: Would assisted living prevent my loved one from getting personal attention?

Not only does assisted living provide the security you need for your loved ones but it also includes an abundant opportunity for them to socialize with new friends and participate in activities. With professional assistance available in case of potential problems and nearby recreational events, it literally presents the best of both worlds by allowing your family member the chance to maintain their independence and increase their overall well-being.

Q: Does if offer enough privacy?

With assistant living, your aging loved one can receive the care they need when they need it in a homey setting. As an affordable and more private alternative to nursing homes, this allows them to participate in events when they would like and easily take a break if they begin to feel overwhelmed. This also is useful for family visits and activities so that they can have the ability to socialize with their new group of friends when desired and still be able to share quiet moments together in the peace of their own room.

Q: How can it improve my loved one’s quality of life?

Due to a readily available source of assistance from high-quality profession caregivers, residents can receive daily help with activities such as bathing, dressing and eating so that you can get the peace of mind needed to rest easier. In the event of a maintenance issue in the home, our staff will be ready to fix any potential issue so that they will not have to worry about basic home repairs. From this, they can decrease their stress and achieve an optimum level of health.

Although moving into an assisted living home can present a new change for your aging loved ones, it also provides needed security and support so that they can stay active. At Choice Health Management, our team puts your family first. Contact our staff today to learn more about our assisted living program and how it can help you.

3 Keys to Fighting Elderly Depression

With the arrival of World Health Day every April, taking the time to reflect on vital issues can be a key step in improving your overall quality of life. In the past, this important holiday has helped spread awareness of diseases such as diabetes, blood pressure, and food-based illnesses by sharing knowledge and advocating preventative actions. However, this year we are taking a step back to understand that not all conditions can be evident to the outside eye. Each year, more than 16 million American adults suffer from depression, making it one of the most common mental illnesses in the nation. From this, 7 million of those affected are over the age of 65. In honor of the World Health Day’s ‘Let’s Talk’ campaign, which seeks to spread awareness of this vital issue, Choice Health Management offers these essential management guidelines so that you can find the help you need to live a full life:

Know the Symptoms

Allowing depression to go untreated can dramatically decrease your well-being. Although it can be easy, dismissing warning signs and treating them as common mood swings can have severe future consequences. To ensure you get the help necessary to live your days to the fullest, recognize the symptoms. Although feeling sadness, hopeless, cranky, nervous and disengaged are the most publicized effects, they are not the only indicators. If you are feeling fatigue, have consistent headaches, abdominal cramps, digestive issues, an increase or decrease in your appetite and experience insomnia, these can also be important signs of a more serious problem.

Speak Out

If you experience these symptoms, don’t keep it inside. Speaking to family, friends and medical professionals is a key component of managing the effects of the disease. If you are not yet comfortable in seeking personal support, contacting an advocacy group such as the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance can be an important first step in coming to terms with the condition. No matter which option you take, by breaking the barrier and seeking help you can find the treatment that’s effective for your unique needs and have a core team that will provide vital support with the transition.

Stay Healthy

A key tool in the fight against depression is keeping active. With the arrival of spring, it’s the perfect time to enjoy walks and other outdoor events. Spending the day in a park can also help increase relaxation and prevent possible anxiety. If you are struggling to make it outside, start small. Make it a point to walk each day to the end of your driveway and back. Additionally, try to incorporate more healthy foods into your diet and eliminate caffeine, alcohol, and cigarettes. To help stay active, you can also join community clubs and groups or simply ask a friend to accompany you on a daily stroll. Even the smallest steps can make a major impact in improving your overall well-being.

Although depression is an ongoing fight, with support and healthy habits, you can continue to overcome the obstacles. If you need professional assistance to help manage the symptoms, Choice Health Management offers both independent and assisted living so that you get the professional aid needed to live a full life. Contact our friendly team today to find out how we can help you.

How to Bring Spring Home for Your Assisted Living Loved Ones

With the arrival of spring, it’s the perfect time to enjoy outdoor family activities.  However, for aging loved ones, it can be increasingly difficult to experience the extent of the fun. To help your family members in assisted living, Choice Health Management Services offers these easy tips for bringing the new season’s merriment inside.

Create a Sensory Basket

If your loved ones are not able to go outside, bring it to them with a sensory basket!  By including different types of their favorite flowers, pinecones, and leaves into a fun basket, they can experience the sights and fragrances of spring without additional stress.  To personalize the experience, include individual touches. For example, if your family member was a farmer, adding soybeans, corn, or soil can make them feel connected to their passion and serve as a reminder of the joys of nature.

Help Them Assemble Vases

When your family comes to visit your loved ones, try doing spring activities with them like creating vases of flowers.  By letting them decorate their own vase and picking some of the flowers you brought along, they can make themselves a beautiful bouquet.  Since this is a family-friendly activity, it is the perfect opportunity to include the grandkids. Not only can they help, but together your family can even make bouquets for other residents to help bring a little spring to their doorstep.

Optimize Their View

If your family member has a window in their room, place a bird feeder or bath outside of it to brighten the atmosphere.  Additionally, placing potted plants outdoors or on their windowsill can help get them into the seasonal mood.  If looking out the window isn’t an option, placing nature scene posters on their walls can transform their room into a spring oasis.

Take Them for a Walk

Fresh air is the best way to experience this time of year with your aging loved ones.  Sitting on a bench, people watching, or feeding geese are the perfect way to connect with your family member.  While on your walk, pick some flowers to bring back to their room so they can take a piece of their excursion with them.

Spring offers a wonderful time for creating treasured memories with your family and friends.  Although it may come with obstacles, experiencing the outdoors together can help you reconnect. If you have questions about how you can make the most of the season for your assisted living loved ones, contact the team at Choice Health Management today.

3 Tips to Keeping Healthy During National Nutrition Month

As the years go by, it can become increasingly difficult to stay healthy. However, by falling into basic routines and habits, you may be limiting your fitness potential and increasing the risk of illness. To help you stay fit, Choice Health Management Services offers these tips for healthy and happy aging.

  1. Stay Active

Staying energetic can help relieve chronic pain, maintain strength, improve mental function, lower blood pressure, and reduce health risks.  Additionally, increasing muscle mass allows drugs to metabolize quicker so medicine can be cleared from your body more effectively. By incorporating a new hobby or workout routine, such as gardening or yoga, you can keep your edge and avoid future complications.

  1. Load Up on High Fiber Foods

Since your digestive system slows as you age, eating fiber is a way to combat this common problem.  Try eating beans, peas, seeds, nuts, meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and grains to give your body needed energy.  Fiber also helps prevent heart disease, diabetes, weight gain, and some cancers. To avoid uncomfortable side effects, introduce fiber slowly into your diet. Additionally, be sure to drink plenty of water to help your body digest the new foods.

  1. Try Variations of Things You Like

Games are an important tool to help keep the mind sharp.  Try doing different kinds of puzzles and finding challenging crosswords. Another way to exercise your brain is by using your non-dominant hand.  If you write with your right hand, try eating or brushing your teeth with your left to help improve brain function.  You could even try learning about a new topic or different language.  By challenging your mind, you can decrease your risk of Alzheimer’s and improve cognition.

National Nutrition Month serves as an important reminder to reflect on our habits. However, essential health and interaction are important year-round.  If you need help caring for your aging loved one, Choice Health Management Services offers a variety of services such as skilled nursing services to assisted or independent livingContact us today to learn more about how we can help.

What You Can Do To Help Prevent Memory Loss

With each passing year, there is new opportunities to make treasured memories with your family. However, if your loved one is having difficultly remembering past events and names, it may be a sign of a larger problem. Last year, an estimated 5.4 million Americans suffered from Alzheimer’s disease. From this, 5.2 million cases were in adults age 65 or older. Although there are no guarantees or cures for Alzheimer’s, certain activities may help improve memory. At Choice Health Management, we take the health of your family to heart. To help slow the effects of memory loss and improve overall health, we offer these key guidelines for your aging loved ones.

Stay Social

According to research done by the MacArthur Foundation, social support can improve the mental performance of seniors as well as increase self-esteem. Joining groups, especially ones that include learning new skills or hobbies, is a way to cultivate a sense of meaning and counter the effects of stress-related disease. Additionally, participating in activities that challenge your brain can aid in sharpening the memory. To start, ask your loved one what activities they are interested in and research local groups or clubs that can help provide assistance. This can be as easy as doing a jigsaw puzzle daily or joining in a local bingo game. All of these efforts may seem small but, by giving purpose and relying on a strong social team, you can help improve both memory and their quality of life.

Keep it Healthy

By placing an emphasis on healthy living, your loved one can improve their physical fitness and brain cognition by receiving vital nutrients. Fruits and vegetables offer sufficient sources of antioxidants and healthy fats from fish, nuts, and whole grains help protect the body from deterioration and reduces the risk of stroke. Additionally, regular exercise is another key practice to staying mentally sharp. This does not have to be extraneous or intense to be effective. Participating in daily walks, yoga, swimming or even gardening can reap vital physical benefits.  By combining proper diet, daily exercises and a consistent sleep schedule, the risk of diabetes, high cholesterol and blood pressure dramatically decreases. From this, you give your loved ones the best possible tools to stay healthy.

Seek Help

Although steps such as a strong diet and proper sleep can aid in increasing fitness and prevent disease, it is not always enough. If you are concerned that your loved one needs additional assistance, Choice Health Management is here to help make the process as easy as possible. Contact our staff today to learn more about our assisted living and memory care services.

3 Keys to a Happy Heart

While Valentine’s Day brings plenty of room for romance, this year it’s time to wear red for a different reason. February marks the beginning of American Heart Month, a period dedicated to recognizing the number one health concern in the nation. To protect your loved ones, Choice Health Management offers these keys to maintaining healthy heart:

  1. Know the Symptoms

In the event of a heart attack, time is one of the most precious variables in limiting damage. If chest pains or feelings such as squeezing or fullness persist, it is not a time to be cautionary. Although this can be as simple as acid reflux, it is important to seek professional assistance in order to rule out the possibility of heart complications, particularly if is paired with back or jaw pain. Similarly, shortness of breath, anxiety, cold sweat, dizziness, fainting, fatigue and nausea are also important triggers.

  1. Keep it Healthy

Nearly 70 percent of American adults are either overweight or obese, putting them at a high risk of heart disease. By exercising regularly and maintaining a healthy diet, you can help prevent heart attacks as well as improve overall health. To help make this possible, be sure to keep your goals realistic. Avoid crazy diet fads and stick with the basics by decreasing your red meat consumption in place of grilled chicken, cutting the potato chips for veggies and finding an exercise routine that fits your lifestyle. Above all, avoid smoking or exposure to second-hand smoke.

  1. Limit Stress

To preserve health and maintain peace of mind, reducing stress is an important element for your fitness. Find time during the day for meditation or reflection. Look for opportunities to volunteer at events that are close to your heart and commit to getting a full sleep schedule. Hobbies are another way to find outlets to relive potential stress. Taking up journaling, yoga or gardening can help ease strenuous thoughts and maintain your quality of life.

Although American Heart Month is only twenty-eight days long, the impact of developing these important habits can benefit you year-round. By incorporating these tips into your daily routine, you can help avoid heart disease and improve overall health. If your loved one needs professional assistance, Choice Health Management offers a variety of services to keep them safe. From skilled nursing services to assisted or independent living, we take your family’s health personally. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help.

What You Can Do During National Bath Safety Month

With the arrival of January comes the beginning of National Bath Safety Month. More than one in three seniors over the age of 65 fall each year and, from this, 80 percent of those falls occur in the bathroom. Due to the multitude and instability of bathroom surfaces, it is important for the security of your loved ones to properly outfit these problematic areas. With these helpful guidelines form Choice Health Management, you can ensure your family will avoid potential injury.

Update Problematic Areas

To guarantee safety in and out of the bathtub, install reachable safety handles by the bathtub, toilet and shower. This should be specialty designed items that will support their weight, as opposed to a towel rack or bar which can cause further injury if used as a grab bar. For stable footing, install non-slip strips or mats in the bottom of the bathtub as well as a stable mat in the entry/exit of the shower. Additionally, make sure a portable phone is always available in the bathroom in the event of an emergency.

Stay Safe in the Shower

According to the CDC, approximately 1.6 million older adults seek emergency care every year for fall-related injuries, fractures, or head traumas. Showers are one of the most at-risk areas to experience such an injury. To combat this, transfer benches and shower chairs offer additional support to avoid potentially dangerous situations.

Keep It Clean

Since bathrooms are at high risk for falls, don’t put anything to chance. Make sure all spills are cleaned promptly and the bathroom floor is clean. Additionally, don’t let décor ideas stand in your way. Clear away any unnecessary items so that there is plenty of space to move around. For added precaution, cover sharp edges of counters and faucets with towels while the bathroom is in use.

Although bathrooms offer a potential increase in injury, these tips can help keep your loved ones safe. However, if you require additional assistance, Choice Health Management offers several services such as assisted living and nursing services to provide maximize care. To learn more about how we can help your family, contact our team today.

Stay Active this Winter with these 3 Indoor Exercises

With the winter weather looming outside, it can be difficult to do more than curl up with a book and wait until spring. However, limiting your activity this season can be detrimental to your physical fitness and cause a potential decrease in heath. To stay fit, Choice Health Management offers these indoor exercises to keep you active year-round:

  • Yoga
    If inclement weather has you staying indoors during the winter months, yoga is a low impact exercise that can be easily adjusted to fit any physical restrictions. Not only does it increase flexibility and endurance, but it can also be a way to reduce stress and increase relaxation. Many yoga poses come with alternatives to take pressure off of potential hot spots such as the wrists and knees. These poses can be done at home or through classes at your local community center.

 

  • Swimming

It can be tempting to skip a trip to the indoor pool, however, swimming is one of the most beneficial ways you can keep in shape. Since it is low impact, it gives you the chance to increase your endurance and flexibility without a heightened risk of injury. If the effort or weather risks of traveling outdoors intimidates you, finding a swimming partner can help increase your commitment. Many physical therapy practices offer aquatic exercise programs, so look into finding one that fits your specific needs.

 

  • Weightlifting
    The idea of weightlifting can seem intimidating, however, it can be an effective exercise to proactively prevent broken or fractured bones. When performed properly, weightlifting can also increase strength, balance and agility. All of this helps limit risk of future falls and injuries. This exercise also provides relief from arthritis pain by strengthening muscles, tendons and ligaments around the joints. Before you begin, speak with your doctor about what exercises are best suited for your personal health to avoid potential injury.

Utilizing these important exercises this winter can not only help you stay social but it will contribute to a better sleep schedule and increased overall health. At Choice Health Management, we are here to help with on-site fitness centers for our assisted living residents and transportation services for our independent living residents. Find out more by speaking with our friendly staff today.