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Caregiver

Is that too loud for you?

Submitted by Mariela Miranda on 14:21

noise pollution We are constantly worrying about air, land and water pollution and how much they are not only killing the planet, but also affecting our health.  There’s a particular form of pollution however that we tend to oversee that just like the ones mentioned above it is as hazardous and potentially incapacitating: Noise Pollution. Seniors and small children are the population most at risk from noise pollution yet this menace is bad for all of us. The human body has a “fight or flight” reaction to loud, unwanted noises and this makes it very dangerous for vulnerable people. The nervous system is directly crippled by a series of physiological changes along with the vascular and even hormonal system. When someone is exposed to constant noise at high levels some of the following conditions may be triggered:

Washing your hands of caring for someone with C diff

Submitted by Pablo Retana on 11:58

washing handsThat does not mean that you should leave a person infected with Clostridium difficile (C. diff) to their own devices. What it means is that all employees must wash hands, starting with the caregiver. Speaking of hands, on the one hand elderly individuals, people with certain medical conditions, and people with weakened immune systems are at an increased risk of getting C. diff – that is, people who are most likely already under the supervision of a caregiver. On the other hand, this germ is transmitted from one person to another when Person A does not wash his or her hands after touching a feces-contaminated surface (toilets, bed pans, commode chairs, bed rails, rectal thermometers) and then touches an object that comes in contact with Person B’s mouth.

Caring for someone with congestive heart failure (CHF)

Submitted by Pablo Retana on 13:24

heart failureThere is no ‘I’ in caring for someone with congestive heart failure. Actually there are many, but the point is that this condition affects directly one person, but when all is said and done there will be many broken hearts. One heart must be stronger than all, though, and it’s the caregiver’s. Hopefully the following will help you and your loved one with CHF endure the hardships that come with this disease.

Good COPD/Bad COPD: Caring for someone with COPD

Submitted by Pablo Retana on 11:28

copdCaring for someone with COPD has its good days and its bad days, depending on whether the person with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is having a good day or bad day. There will be plenty of both, though the latter might seem to outnumber the former. On a day when COPD is really acting up, the patient is likely to take it out on you. A way to deal with this is to take some time to yourself – ideally an hour – to allow cooler heads to prevail and be able to talk things over later when both caregiver and care receiver have calmed down. During that time you may or may not listen to some music to soothe themselves – we recommend Fuel’s Bad Day, Bad Day by R.E.M, or Daniel Powter’s Bad Day. But not the Justin Bieber one; that’s just depressing.

What MedicAlert Awareness Month means to caregivers

Submitted by Pablo Retana on 17:30

medic alertAugust is MedicAlert Awareness Month, during which the MedicAlert foundation graciously reminds us of the importance of medical bracelets. And indeed they are very important, not least for caregivers. As the National Institute on Aging recommends, having a care receiver wear a medical bracelet is high on the list of caregiver priorities (in fact as important as any other medical supplies for home care), especially if the person suffers from Alzheimer’s disease or any other form of dementia or mental illness. It is well known that people with cognitive decline tend to wander away and get lost. A medical bracelet allows bystanders to know the health status of the person – in case they behave erratically, as they are wont to do – as well as who to call to return the person to safety.

Caring for someone with breast cancer

Submitted by Pablo Retana on 12:23

Breast CancerWomen with breast cancer are in some ways like Amazons. For starters, there is a belief that Amazons cut out their right breasts (ostensibly to achieve better bow control), and there were no weighted leisure forms back then. But most of all, Amazons were brave fighters, courageous warriors, in one word, bad***. As fierce as they were, though, they still needed men – or at least that was the moral of Hercules and the Amazon Women. Similarly, women who have breast cancer also need to rely on someone special called a caregiver. Not that the caregiver must be of the male gender – that would be like saying that only females develop breast cancer. The point is that, as Bono said, you don’t have to go it alone. For the sake of argument, let’s say the patient is a woman and the caregiver is a man. Kind of like Love Story. You know, Love Story? ‘Love means never having to say you’re sorry’? Well, moving on.

Putting a price on priceless: Family caregiving costs

Submitted by Pablo Retana on 14:04

caregiverHours of care provided: 37 billion. Estimated worth of care given: $470 billion. Caring for a sick and/or disabled loved one: Priceless? In an alternate universe – which we might call the ‘Caregiverse’ – family caregiving would be one of the leading industries in the world, whose economic value is just a little under that of Walmart yearly sales and surpasses the annual sales of Apple, Hewlett Packard, IBM, and Microsoft put together. Caregivers would be an elite group to the point that Ethan Hawke would borrow Jude Law’s DNA just so he could fulfill his dream of becoming one.

Occupational Therapy for seniors

Submitted by Mariela Miranda on 13:01

Ocupational TherapyOccupational Therapy has turned into one of the best tools to help individuals learn or regain independence. It can be applied to children, adolescents, adults and seniors. This type of therapy incorporates a meaningful process that gets the person in a participation mood for daily activities in a focused and more controlled way.  Overall, occupational therapy leads to an improvement in social skills and quality of life.

Caring for someone with borderline personality disorder

Submitted by Pablo Retana on 17:46

borderline personalityPeople who care for a loved one with borderline personality disorder (BPD) often feel like they’re walking across a minefield. The slightest false move – a word, an action, a look – could set off a bomb and send the caregiver flying through the air. It truly is no wonder that people with relatives who have BPD either go all in like troops landing in Normandy in Saving Private Ryan, or entirely refuse to leave the trenches like the French soldiers in Paths of Glory. Curiously, they are emulating one of the symptoms of BPD; seeing everything as absolutely good or absolutely bad, with no gray areas. However, you neither have to sacrifice every inch of your being for your loved one, nor leave them completely to their own devices.

Caring for someone with brain cancer: Not like in movies

Submitted by Pablo Retana on 12:29

Caring for someone with brain cancer has nothing to do with super intelligence or telekinesis, like Phenomenon made it seem – though it may feel as endless as that 1996 movie. In it, John Travolta had an astrocytoma brain tumor, which supposedly stimulated his brain function and enabled him to stay up all night reading books, come up with revolutionary theories, and conduct groundbreaking research. In real life, however, someone with an astrocytoma tumor in the brain is more likely to go on a shooting spree from the University of Texas at Austin Tower, as Charles Whitman did in 1966. Actually, one example is not only fictional but also implausible, and the other is real but on the extreme side of the spectrum. So what is caring for someone with a brain tumor really like?

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