Caregiver Stress Relief Photo of the Week

Caregivers employed with senior care companies know the realities of caregiver stress. Caregiverlist invites all family caregivers and professional caregivers to take a moment for relaxation with our photo of the week and inspirational quote. This week's photo was taken at Land's End in Cornwall, England and shows us some of the majesty of the world around us. Feel free to share this photo with your loved ones. Thank you caregivers and certified nursing aides for caring for our seniors and please refer your friends to apply for part-time and full-time job positions on Caregiverlist.com and visit our career center for additional career tools.

 

"Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things."  -Robert Brault

Word Search + App Provides Themed Puzzles for Cognitive Exercise: Caregiverlist Senior Care App Review

Senior caregivers and their clients may find that they tire of playing the same games over and over again to keep up cognitive activity. The Word Search + app provides a fun way for seniors to exercise their brains while completing themed puzzles.

Intellectual activity stimulates the brain and keeps it functioning in top shape. Just like physical activity is required to keep the body in shape, mental exercise is required for seniors to maintain a fit brain as they age. The Word Search + app provides 16 free categories of word searches with options to play on Easy, Medium or Hard levels. Categories range from Dog Breeds to Classical Composers to Ancient Civilizations and range from puzzles with six words to 12 words depending on the level of difficulty.

Words can be displayed horizontally, vertically or diagonally within the block of text. When a user finds a word from the bank below in the puzzle, they simply select it in the puzzle by sliding their finger along the letters of the word in the puzzle to highlight it. A timer also keeps track of how quickly a user completes the quiz, in case they would like to attempt to beat their own time in the future. 

In addition to simply finding the words, caregivers and their senior clients could learn from the words in the given categories. If seniors choose a specific category for the puzzle such as Artists, as they complete the search they will look for names of famous painters which could remind them of a favorite work or peak their curiosity about an artist that they've never heard of before. After finishing the puzzle, caregivers can help their senior clients look up any topics or people generated by the quiz that they would like to learn more about. 

 

The Word Search + app is available for Apple platforms.

Senior caregivers, let us know your feedback on this app and keep us posted if you discover additional apps that assist with caregiving duties and help relieve caregiver stress. You may also refer-a-friend to a senior caregiving job and win prizes weekly and monthly on Caregiverlist. 

-Paige Krzysko

When Seniors Live at Home, It's Safety First

Seniors in America, by and large, prefer to age in place, at home. In fact, according to AARP, over 80 percent of seniors want to stay in their own homes as they age. However, many seniors need help with ADLs or activities of daily living, such as eating, dressing, bathing, toileting, shopping and medication management. Family caregivers many times find themselves stretched to a breaking point. Between work, caring for their own children, and other day-to-day demands on their time, caring for a senior may be a burden too great to bear.

Assisted living and nursing homes are options when family believes their loved-one can no longer live safely at home alone. But if 24-hour care isn’t needed, the autonomy, independence, and comfort-level of aging at home is preferential for most seniors. The biggest concern for seniors aging in place, at home, and many times alone, is safety.

A safe home is especially important in later years, as seniors begin to experience reduced eyesight, poorer balance, reduced flexibility, etc. AARP has identified the following primary living space concerns:

  • Safety features such as non-slip floor surfaces.
  • Bathroom aides such as grab bars.
  • A personal alert system that allows people to call for help in emergencies.
  • Entrance without steps.
  • Wider doorways.
  • Lever-handled doorknobs.
  • Higher electrical outlets.
  • Lower electrical switches.

In-home caregivers need to be chosen with safety in mind. Adrienne Sierra addresses the home care provider choice in her recent U-T San Diego Healthy Aging column, Feel Safe and Secure with In-Home Care. In it she discusses the precautions and safeguards that go into choosing a professional caregiver and keeping a safe home environment a priority.

Caregiverlist recommends working with a quality home care agency in order to assure that the caregiver has received qualified caregiver training such as the training and certification offered by Caregiverlist Training University’s Basic Caregiver Training. Home care agencies also routinely perform background checks and drug testing prior to employment.

Safety and security should be the number one priority for seniors and their families. With proper precautions, seniors should be able to remain in the comfort and familiarity of their own homes and lead independent lives longer.

West Virginia Caregiver Wins Caregiver Job Refer-A-Friend Weekly Prize

Congratulations to this weeks winner of the Caregiverlist Refer-A-Friend and Win Program- Caregiver Sydney Stone from West Virginia

Sydney referred her friends and family for caregiving jobs that are available on Caregiverlist.com, and she won a free 8-hour Training from Caregiverlist Training University. Every weekly winner will receive a free training. Read Sydney's story to find out what lead her to her caregiving career, and then refer your friends, family, and coworkers to professional caregiving jobs near you.
 
Meet Sydney to learn more about the benefits of becoming a professional senior caregiver.
 
 
-What led you to begin a career in caregiving?
I love helping people no matter what their age is.
 
-What is one of your most memorable caregiving experiences?
Dinner time was always fun and I was constantly laughing.
 
-How many years have you been a caregiver?
Two years.
 
What has being a caregiver taught you?
Be PATIENT.
 
How do you manage the stress that comes with caregiving?
I take a break and call my mom
 
Senior care companies hire Professional Caregivers, C.N.A's and C.H.H.A's weekly from Caregiverlist, the only Caregiver Career Center customized for the senior care industry. Build your profession caregiver resume, and apply for multiple caregiving positions near you online.
 
Refer-A-Friend to Caregiverlist and get entered to win a free 8-hour online caregiver training program. A new winner is drawn weekly. One month GRAND PRIZE WINNER receives a Scrub of the Month (tops, bottoms, and shoes) courtesy of Scrubs Magazine. 
 
 

 

Rainbow in Wales Caregiver Stress Relief Photo of the Week

Caregivers employed with senior care companies know the realities of caregiver stress. Caregiverlist invites all family caregivers and professional caregivers to take a moment for relaxation with our photo of the week and inspirational quote. This week's photo was taken at Caernarfon Castle in Wales.  Nature gives us magical moments that we sometimes just have to stop and savor, even on a rainy day. Feel free to share this photo with your loved ones. Thank you caregivers and certified nursing aides for caring for our seniors and please refer your friends to apply for part-time and full-time job positions on Caregiverlist.com and visit our career center for additional career tools.

 

"Sometimes it's important to work for that pot of gold. But other times it's essential to take time off and to make sure that your most important decision in the day simply consists of choosing which color to slide down on the rainbow." ~Douglas Pagels, These Are the Gifts I'd Like to Give to You

Argus App Builds Overall Health Snapshot: Caregiverlist Senior Care App Review

Building a healthy lifestyle for senior caregivers and their clients comes from eating well, exercising and adjusting daily habits. The Argus app builds an overall daily health snapshot to help users see how their lifestyle serves their overall health. Over time, users can compare data from different days to see trends in their behavior and decide if they can alter it to live a more healthy lifestyle. 

Upon downloading the Argus app, users needs to walk about 30 steps to activate the app initially. The movement tunes the app into how users walk so that it can accurately record the number of steps taken throughout the day, like a pedometer. Once the app is activated, the user sets their target goal for how many steps they would like to take in a day. 

On the main timeline, users can log everything from physical activity to food and water consumption and heart rate (using a companion app). The app also includes a basal calorie calculator. Caregivers can plug in height, weight, birthday and gender and the app will calculate the number of calories burned throughout the day based on metabolic rate. If users also log physical activity, the app will add it to the day's total as active calories. 

The physical activity log includes a GPS option, meaning that if users go for an outdoor jog, the app can effectively track the distance and time run and convert it to calories burned. While the app doesn't explicitly track calories consumed, it does keep track of liquid intake visually on the timeline and it also offers users the chance to take photos of their meals to visually look back at their eating habits. 

 

The Argus app is available for free for Apple platforms.

Senior caregivers, let us know your feedback on this app and keep us posted if you discover additional apps that assist with caregiving duties and help relieve caregiver stress. You may also refer-a-friend to a senior caregiving job and win prizes weekly and monthly on Caregiverlist. 

-Paige Krzysko

Seniors Live Longer by Building Muscle

Living a longer and fuller life has always been a goal for the aging. And while time on the treadmill keeps you heart-healthy and hours on the yoga mat makes you more flexible, studies now show that lifting weights can actually help you live longer.

A recent study published in the American Journal of Medicine conducted by Drs. Preethi Srikanthan and Arun S. Karlamangla of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, indicates that building muscle mass reduces metabolic syndrome risk factors, which include high blood pressure, obesity, high cholesterol, and insulin resistance.

Senior obesity and Body Mass Index (BMI) were the senior mortality focus in previous studies. “Our study indicates that clinicians need to be focusing on ways to improve body composition, rather than on BMI alone, when counseling older adults on preventative health behaviors," said Dr. Srikanthan.

The average American loses ½-1 pound of muscle per year according to the Princeton Longevity Center. By age 65, many adults have lost half the muscle mass they had at 25. After age 60, it becomes increasingly difficult to rebuild lost muscle mass.

"The greater your muscle mass, the lower your risk of death," said study co-author Dr. Arun Karlamangla, "Thus, rather than worrying about weight or body mass index, we should be trying to maximize and maintain muscle mass."

Paired with brain-enhancing exercises like those provided by applications such as the recently-reviewed Lumosity, building physical strength can help seniors live longer and more productive lives, helping to stave off the frailty that we’ve come to associate with aging.

Seniors rely on their caregivers to help them live their best possible lives. Caregiverlist Basic Training, powered by Caregiver Training University, provides easy-to-access online caregiver training for professional and family caregivers. The 8-hour training course meets senior caregiver orientation training requirements for many states and provides information on how to best care for your senior client or loved one.

Flowers for Caregivers Help Relieve Stress

Caregivers employed with senior care companies know the realities of caregiver stress. Caregiverlist invites all family caregivers and professional caregivers to take a moment for relaxation with our photo of the week and inspirational quote. Spring finally officially arrives this week, and we have a photo that shows us some of the beautiful things nature creates for us. This photo was taken in Portobello Road in London, and hopefully the flowers will brighten your day.  Feel free to share this photo with your loved ones. Thank you caregivers and certified nursing aides for caring for our seniors and please refer your friends to apply for part-time and full-time job positions on Caregiverlist.com and visit our career center for additional career tools.

 

"The beautiful spring came; and when Nature resumes her loveliness, the human soul is apt to revive also. "

 -Harriet Ann Jacobs

Nutrition Quiz App Dispels Common Food Myths: Caregiverlist Senior Care App Review

When it comes to eating healthy, knowing what exactly constitutes a healthy diet and which food products truly provide nutritional benefits can be tricky. Sometimes it seems like no matter where you look, a new food item is being declared healthy or unhealthy. Senior caregivers can use the Nutrition Quiz app to learn hidden truths and identify the myths of eating a nutritionally sound diet. 

The app features various tips categories, where users can learn new facts about nutrition and how various foods affect the body. The tips categories include Men & Women, which focuses on health differences between genders; Sugar & Spices, which shares lesser known facts about components added to your food; and Functional Food, which shows how various foods can be used for other health benefits. Other categories can be unlocked in the paid version of the app.

Once users finish brushing up on their facts, they can enter the quiz mode of the app. The quiz will present a statement and users must choose whether it's a myth or a truth. Once an answer is selected, the app will display a brief explanation of why the user's answer was wrong or correct. Caregivers can play the quiz mode with their senior clients as a collaborative effort to learn more about nutrition and how various food affect mental and physical health. A sample fact learned from the app is that sugar masquerades under several different names on nutrition labels, such as sucrose. Just because the word sugar isn't explicitly listed doesn't mean that there's no sugar in the food- it may just have a different name. 

 

The Nutrition Quiz app is available for free for Apple platforms.

Senior caregivers, let us know your feedback on this app and keep us posted if you discover additional apps that assist with caregiving duties and help relieve caregiver stress. You may also refer-a-friend to a senior caregiving job and win prizes weekly and monthly on Caregiverlist. 

-Paige Krzysko

Healthy Eating: Seniors and Nutrition

Seniors looking to live a long life would do well to eat three large meals a day, (get plenty of sleep), and enjoy a monthly sushi dinner according to Misao Okawa who, at 116 years old, is the oldest living person in the world. While raw fish might not be my elderly mother’s first choice for supper, a healthy, well-balanced diet is certainly one of the keys to longevity.

March is National Nutrition Month sponsored by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The campaign is “designed to focus attention on the importance of making informed food choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits.” The elderly face their own challenges when it comes to healthy eating. Physiological and psychological changes that occur as we age can make preparing and eating nutritious meals difficult. However, if there’s a group who can most benefit from a healthy diet, it’s the elderly.

Why don’t seniors eat properly?

Challenge: Sensory Changes — Taste and smell can diminish with age, so food just doesn’t taste as good anymore.
Possible Fix: Now’s the time to experiment with herbs, oils and spices. Although it’s tempting, don’t load up on added salt or sugar to increase the taste of foods.

Challenge: Medications — Certain medications can change the taste of food or dull the appetite.
Possible Fix: Talk to a doctor about medication substitution or best ways to counteract any side effects.

Challenge: Physical Challenges — Perhaps chewing is difficult because of dental issues. Digestion is more difficult and often seniors often complain of heartburn, constipation, and diarrhea.
Possible Fix: Softer foods like yogurt and quinoa are packed full of vitamins and are easy on the teeth and the digestive system. Fiber can help with digestion. As always, discuss the matter with the doctor.

Challenge: Lack of Mobility — Some seniors can no longer drive or have difficulty getting to the grocery store.
Possible Fix: Services like Peapod deliver groceries to your door. Non-profits like Store To Door of Minneapolis/St. Paul, shops for and delivers groceries and prescriptions to aging and homebound seniors.

Challenge: Financial Challenges — People think they can’t eat well on a limited budget.
Possible Fix: Buy local and in season. Whole foods cost less than processed foods. Clipping coupons can extend your grocery budget and help you eat well on the cheap.

Challenge: Loneliness and Depression — Many seniors are eating solo when a spouse passes on and friends are no longer available. Many balk at cooking for one.
Possible Fix: Caregivers should sit and eat with their senior clients (if that’s what the senior would like.) Senior programs like Meals on Wheels deliver meals for those who’d prefer not to cook and cooking clubs through senior social groups are readily available for those who would.

There are many benefits to eating well, especially for seniors. Eating well can reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, bone loss, anemia, and type 2 diabetes. Healthy eating can also help you reduce high blood pressure and lower cholesterol. Nutritional eating keeps you healthy by providing needed nutrients to your whole body. Vitamins and nutrients can also help promote brain function.

Tufts University’s Modified MyPyramid for Older Adults emphasizes nutrient-dense food choices and the importance of fluid balance. They recommend the following for whole-body nutrition:

  • Whole, enriched, and fortified grains and cereals such as brown rice and 100% whole wheat bread.
  • Bright-colored vegetables such as carrots and broccoli.
  • Deep-colored fruit such as berries and melon.
  • Low- and non-fat dairy products such as yogurt and low-lactose milk.
  • Dry beans and nuts, fish, poultry, lean meat and eggs. Liquid vegetable oils and soft spreads low in saturated and trans fat.
  • Fluid intake.
  • Physical activity such as walking, house work and yard work.

 

Food Pyramid for Older Adults by Tufts University

Senior caregivers can sign up for Caregiverlist's newsletter, The Caregiver's Gist, delivered to your email inbox every week. In addition to various senior issues, we share a weekly recipe for a tasty, healthy meal you can prepare for yourself or your senior client.

Seniors nationwide may turn to their local Area Agency on Aging to learn about community senior care services including nutrition and meal programs. Some may even offer meal delivery.

Caregiverlist knows senior caregivers are on the front lines of helping the elderly to eat right as a component of healthy aging. You can learn additional crucial caregiving skills by taking an 8-hour online Caregiver Certification training course provided by Caregiverlist Training University.

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