Healthy Options for Seniors Who Love Candy

Candy is not just for kids anymore. While some candies may be chock-full of sugar and artificial flavors, there are healthier options out there for seniors. Seniors love candy because it is good for satisfying a sweet tooth and can be incorporated into any part of their day. Perhaps it is an indulging treat after a meal, included in a relaxing moment or incorporated in a social activity. Maybe candy is associated with memories from a childhood of candy-filled festivities and holidays. Whatever their reason, seniors love candy and can include it, in moderation, as part of a healthy lifestyle. The following ingredients found in candies can provide various benefits to the health of a senior.

Dark Chocolate

More studies are finding that dark chocolate is healthy for you. Antioxidants found in cacao beans are associated with a lower risk for cardiovascular diseases. Eating dark chocolate as part of a healthy lifestyle can also lower your blood pressure and may even prevent diabetes. Seniors can get a healthy dose of dark chocolate by eating a cacao bar or, for even more health benefits, by consuming nuts and berries covered in dark chocolate.

Nuts or Nut Butter

Candies containing peanuts, almonds or peanut butter can be healthier than other candies because of the protein they contain. Protein is an essential part of a healthy diet because, among other things, it aids the immune system and provides energy. So make sure the senior in your life pops a peanut butter cup before their daily walk or exercise routine for that boost of energy.

Coconut

Coconut is linked with improved cardiovascular health and can slow down an increase in blood sugar levels. Coconut is also a good source of fiber, so eating candy containing coconut may aid in digestion and leave seniors feeling fuller for longer periods of time.

Peppermint

Peppermint is a known remedy for an upset stomach since it aids in digestion after eating. But did you know that the smell of peppermint has been linked to mental alertness? After eating lunch, a senior can combat that afternoon lull and drowsiness with a peppermint candy for a few hours of attentiveness and activity.

Ginger

Ginger contains potassium, magnesium, Vitamin D, and antioxidants. Ginger is known for treating nausea and fatigue, but it can also do other things. Studies suggest that ginger has anti-inflammatory elements that may lower cholesterol and even ease the nagging pain of arthritis. Seniors should be sure to keep a bag of ginger candies on hand for keeping arthritis at bay.

Seniors who love candy can continue to enjoy it in moderate amounts and reap health benefits at the same time. From improving attentiveness to easing the aches and pains of arthritis, candy can give delicious relief from life’s daily complaints. So go ahead, seniors, and pamper yourselves with the sweet, richness of dark chocolate, the creamy goodness of peanut butter, the flaky indulgence of coconut, the refreshing coolness of peppermint and the savory smoothness of ginger.

When to Become Concerned About Your Parent’s Health

As we age our bodies can become frail, our senses are not as sharp as they used to be, and our memories sometimes suffer. This is all part of the normal process of aging, but it may be a cause for concern if it negatively affects your parent’s lifestyle. Listed below are some health problems that may need your attention before they turn into a more serious issue.

Mobility

Diminished mobility in an older person can lead to falls and bedsores which can require extensive medical care and therapy. Sitting or laying down for long periods of time can cause painful bedsores that can lead to more serious health problems if they are left untreated. An older person who is inactive may easily lose his or her balance and fall when attempting to stand or walk. Falls in older people can lead to serious injury and sometimes even death when help is not received immediately.

Forgetfulness and/or Confusion

Occasional memory lapses are to be expected as we age, yet frequent confusion or forgetfulness can lead to medical and financial consequences. Forgetting to take medication or go to a doctor’s appointment may be detrimental and create further health problems. Older people may send payment to companies whose advertisements can easily be mistaken for a legitimate billing statement. Other instances of forgetfulness or confusion can be embarrassing or scary and have a significant effect on a person’s mental health and daily routine.

Diminished Senses

Hearing, sight, smell and taste all decline as we age. Not only can this be frustrating but it can also be dangerous to an older person who is not able to see mold on their food, read medication instructions, or hear a medical provider’s diagnosis and advice. If an older person is unable to see or hear well and is still driving it can even be dangerous to others. Lacking of one sense can even impair another sense. An older person who can’t hear well may end up with glasses that don’t correct his or her vision because they were not able to hear the instructions during the exam.

Mental Health

Humans are social creatures, and the need for interaction can have a direct impact on an older person’s mental health. While many older people may have a social support system through their church or community, you may want to pay attention to changing behaviors in your parent if he or she is home bound and does not have frequent interaction with friends or family. Older people are at a higher risk for depression and suicide, so it is important to be familiar with what is normal behavior for your parent.

If your parent exhibits any of the above signs, and it has a direct effect on his or her quality of life, you should pay attention and become involved as needed. You should be concerned if your parent has already experienced a major medical issue such as a stroke, as it will have a lasting effect on your parent’s ability to function day to day.

 

How to Pitch The Idea of Home Care to Your Loved One

There are times in life when elders and their families need extra care and support; however, having help come in to provide one on one care can make some elders uneasy. It’s important to present information to them in a way that shows the benefits of having at-home care, which are numerous and essential, and to lay out the benefits of day to day life as it enhances an elder’s life while providing the highest level of independence possible.

1. Peace of Mind

As parents get older, their ability to properly care for themselves can decrease. This can occur as a result of the natural aging process, but it can also occur from an exacerbating condition that gets in the way of being able to care for oneself. For instance, if an elder has problems with walking, getting to the restroom can be a difficult task. A caregiver’s assistance can help an elder walk to the bathroom, or other arrangements can be made to allow an elder the utmost independence possible.

2. Happy Seniors

What’s important is that an elder is happy and healthy. Some elders need more care than others. Being at home with a personal caregiver helps elders with the care they need while the elder leads a life of happiness. Amongst the care an elder can receive at home, a caregiver provides an excellent source of social interaction. Not only is an elder dealing with experienced and professional staff, but an elder will be in the comfort of their own home so that they can carry on with fun activities and their normal day-to-day life. A caregiver provides what is necessary and allows an elder to live a normal life.

3. Expectations

People are typically fearful of the unknown. Discuss with an elder what to expect when they receive care at home. This can be done through a consultation or it can be done privately at home. Explain to the elder what to expect, how friendly caregivers are and how their life will not change much. Discuss any worries they may have and take their needs into account. Ask them what they want in at-home care and what they want in general. They may wish to go out once a week to the movies or have additional privacy. Having someone new in the home can make people feel anxious. Plan a weekly schedule with them so that they know what to expect. The more details that are provided to an elder, the more comfortable they will be about receiving at-home care.

Despite the outward appearance of an elderly person, the personality does not change much. A person who has always been able to take care of themselves all their life may initially resist receiving care at home because of the notion of less privacy, freedom, dignity and independence. However, when an elder comes to understand all of the benefits of assistance in the areas of their life that they’re no longer able to take care of themselves so that they can engage in fun activities and enjoy life to the fullest, they see the numerous benefits of receiving care at home.

5 Reasons Why In-Home Care is sometimes more appropriate than Assisted Living Centers

Every day across America, senior adults find themselves struggling to meet their basic needs while living alone in their own home. Illness, injury or the aging process itself can make living alone full time a dangerous situation. It most often falls to family members to make the difficult decision to place their elderly loved one in an assisted living facility or arrange for in-home care. There are several important reasons that in-home care may be the very best decision for your elderly loved one.

1. Less Stressful Solution

Being removed from the home can be a highly stressful situation for an elderly person, and that’s not conducive to feelings of well-being. He or she may experience high anxiety levels and even fall into a depression from being separated from all that is familiar and loved. Choosing an in-home care option will allow your loved one to stay right in their own home where they have always been comfortable while still receiving the extra care that they require.

2. Care During the Day

You may choose how often and how long that the caregiver visits your elderly loved one each day. They are available as needed to prepare meals, provide companionship, make sure medicine is taken properly and on-time, assist with bathing and dressing, do the shopping, provide transportation to appointments, light housekeeping and assist with exercise.

3. Nightly Care

In many cases, a family member stays with their elderly loved one as much as possible. In these cases, a caregiver is often called on to stay overnight. This way, other family members can enjoy a night of rest knowing their loved one is being cared for. The caregiver may also make sure night medicine is taken correctly, assist with visits to the restroom to ensure there are no falls, provide late-night snacks and offer company when sleep evades their client.

4. 24-Hour Care Available

If you feel your elderly loved one should not be left alone at all, you can still enjoy the services of in-home care. Caregivers may be provided around-the-clock. You may choose a caregiver who will stay awake and alert all night or one to sleep over and wake up to help the client whenever needed.

5. Living Life to the Fullest

Every senior adult deserves to live out their life in the fullest and happiest way possible. The ability to remain in their own home provides them with the luxuries they are accustomed to such as a home full of pictures, visiting family and friends, their favorite television stations, their own yard and their most comfortable easy chair.

In-home care offers all of these services that are provided by highly-trained and caring professionals. You will be able to select any combination of care that you feel your loved one may need, and services can be changed as needed. Don’t hesitate to call your local in-home care professionals today, and have the peace of mind in knowing that your elderly relative is safe at home and in good hands.