Heavenly Care Summertime News

July 8, 2023

The Importance of Taking Some Time Away

While it can be hard to step away from the seniors we love the most, sometimes taking a few days away during the summer can have some unexpected benefits. While the benefits of a relaxing vacation are self-explanatory, there are some benefits you might not even think of about stepping away from the home where you visit and care for them day in and day out.

Being out of the home for a few days can help bring to light some things that you might not notice every day as you walk in and out of the home, up and down the stairs, or sit in the family room with your favorite senior. Here are just a few of those things.

Have you gone nose blind to the smells in your senior’s home? Often we are with our seniors so much, taking care of them and spending time in their homes that they don’t realize it might have a funky smell. Day in and day out, you walk into the home, and the smell might not even phase you. But take a few days or a week away, and when you step back into the home, that smell is going to grip you and make you realize that maybe something needs to be done about it.

Are the railings in your senior’s home getting loose without even noticing? As you trudge up and down the stairs or follow along behind your senior loved one, you may not even notice that they’re getting loose. Instead, you are just used to how they feel.  Taking some time away can bring such problems to the forefront of your attention.

If you’ve gone somewhere really light and sunny, you might realize when you return to your favorite senior’s home that it’s kind of dark and dull inside. Maybe it’s time to open up the curtains or blinds to let the sunshine in. Just keep in mind that during the hottest parts of the day, you may want to close the blinds or shades back up again to keep the home cooler. Maybe it isn’t even the light of day that’s lacking in the home. Maybe it’s time to spruce up the home with some brighter colors or even some lights to brighten the place, even lighten spirits.

Is the same food in the refrigerator as was there when you left your senior loved one? You may not notice that they are eating less when you are with them each day. But seeing the same bunch of grapes or the untouched milk carton still in the refrigerator can bring to light the fact that your senior might be eating less. It also can alert you to foods they might not really enjoy. For example, without you setting zucchini in front of them to eat, they might not ever eat it because it just doesn’t appeal to them.  Use this as a chance to see which foods might disappear faster than others when they are choosing their own foods to eat at each meal.

Are things getting forgotten? Is the mail unopened? Or are vitamins going untaken? Use this time away to take stock of things your senior loved one might be forgetting. It can give you an indication of how they are doing overall.

Things to Celebrate

⭐  Meet Rosalind, our Caregiver Spotlight for July!  ⭐

In May of this year, Rosalind Trotter joined Heavenly Care as one of our amazing caregivers! Rosalind lives in Killeen and drives an hour to work with clients in Austin! She is always professional, dependable, and proactive in filling her schedule. The care we provide to our beloved clients here at Heavenly Care is exemplified by Rosalind, who represents everything we stand for and expect.

Congratulations to Rosalind! We are lucky to have her on our Heavenly Care team! ????

⭐  Meet Liliane, our Caregiver Spotlight for August!  ⭐

Over the past two years, Liliane has gone above and beyond for our organization! She has always been proactive in picking up shifts; she calls the office and informs us of her availability and willingness to take care of our clients, regardless of distance or time duration. Liliane exemplifies what you would expect from a caregiver.  Even though she is soft-spoken, she is a devoted advocate for her clients, and the families she supports send accolades to the staff.  Liliane provides warm, generous, and unwavering care to everyone she encounters every day. ????

Heat-Related Dangers for Older Adults

As we age, our ability to adequately respond to summer heat can become a serious problem. Older people are at a significantly increased risk of heat-related illnesses or hyperthermia. Hyperthermia can include heat stroke, heat edema (swelling in your ankles and feet when you get hot), heat syncope (sudden dizziness after exercising in the heat), heat cramps, and heat exhaustion.

Here are some health-related factors that may increase the risk of a heat-related illness:

  • Age-related changes to the skin, such as poor blood circulation and inefficient sweat glands
  • Heart, lung, and kidney diseases, as well as any illness that causes general weakness or fever
  • High blood pressure or other conditions that require changes in diet, such as salt-restricted diets
  • Some medications can make a person more sensitive to heat, such as:

Blood pressure medications such as diuretics and Beta-blockers (Toprol XL or Inderal), antihistamines, decongestants, anticholinergics for bladder treatment, some psychiatric medications such as Elavil, Pamelor, Thorazine or Sinemet, stimulant medications such as Adderall or Ritalin

  • Taking several drugs for various conditions
  • Being substantially overweight or underweight
  • Drinking excessive alcoholic beverages

Family Members and Caregivers can ensure that some interventions are in place to prevent a possible Heat Stroke, Heat Exhaustion, or other heat-related illnesses and/or dehydration.

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