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Senior Home Care Services in Waterloo, Kitchener, Cambridge519-208-2000

Healthy Practices for Managing Arthritis – Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge

Arthritis is a blanket term, used to describe over 100 strains of the disease, that is typified by inflammation of the joints or other parts of the body. Inflammation generally causes pain, swelling, and stiffness, and can lead to other more serious health problems. Arthritis is currently the most prevalent chronic health condition in Canada, affecting about 20% of the population, and unfortunately there is no cure for it. Many people are of the impression that arthritis only affects the elderly, however the ailment can develop at any age. People that work in jobs that require repetitive physical tasks are more prone to the disease. This includes office jobs where the majority of the day is spent at the computer. Even children can develop arthritis, as it currently affects just under 25,000 youngsters in Canada. As widespread as the condition is now, it is project by experts that by 2040 roughly 50% of the total population in Canada will suffer from arthritis. As it currently stands, about 50% of the people over 65 in Canada are battling with the ailment. Women are more susceptible to arthritis, and it is estimated that 60% of females over 65 will have arthritis in the next 20 years. Tips for Living with Arthritis Arthritis can be a debilitating disease that can have a detrimental impact on independent living. The joint pain and stiffness that come with the condition can make it difficult and painful to perform regular daily tasks and activities. There are several lifestyle practices that can help manage and alleviate the unpleasant symptoms of the disease. Some suggestions for coping with...

Why is Communication in Health Care so Important? – Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge

Effective and open communication is extremely important for patients, caregivers, and other health care professionals. Good communication is necessary for any group or collaborative situation, but it is critical when it comes to health and wellbeing. Lack of communication can lead to all sorts of problems or complications, such as:       Unattended symptoms Incorrect diagnoses Conflicting or improper medications Chronic illness Unsatisfied patients The Canadian health care system is notorious for poor communication. The lack of comprehensive and updated digital records is one of the main culprits. While steps are currently being taken to correct this problem, the solution is still a long way from being realized. The conversion of paper records to digital files is a long and intensive process. It will likely take many years before the system is sufficiently updated. So, what can you do in the meantime to improve communication in your own health care situation? Optimizing Health Care through Communication To get the most out of your health care situation, it is important to establish clear objectives and then discuss them with your health care team. Your health care team may consist of family caregivers, professional caregivers, nurses, doctors, physiotherapists, and specialists. Making sure everyone is on the same page is not always the easiest task to accomplish. Tips for improving Communication with your Health Care Team Some ways to get information exchange moving in an effective manner, is to: Make a list of your goals and objectives Contact team members to arrange a meeting Determine communication styles and methods Prepare for appointments Goals and Objectives The first thing you should do,...

What Should I Bring to the Hospital? – Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge

The anticipation of a trip to the hospital is enough to put anyone’s nerves on edge. Making a list and planning ahead for what you need to bring to the hospital can help remove some of the stress and worry. For seniors with chronic health issues, it is a good idea to have this list on hand, and maybe even a bag ready to go, just in case of an emergency. What items are recommended for a hospital visit? There are some things that are mandatory to bring, while other suggested items can just help make your check-in and stay a little smoother and more comfortable. Compulsory Items Some items, like previous health care records and medical documents will be necessary for check-in. Some of the documents and information you will need, includes: Valid photo ID Valid government issued health card POA (Power of Attorney for Personal Care) Living will Any other advance health care directives Reports or relevant information you have received from your doctor Including description of diagnoses A list of all medications and supplements you are currently taking This includes prescriptions, over the counter meds, vitamin supplements Personal health record This includes information about: Existing health conditions Allergies Dietary restrictions Physical exam or test results Immunization records Insurance details Emergency contact numbers These documents and records are required to get you checked in and ready for your procedure. A suggested tip would be to keep all these documents in a special folder, box, or drawer at home, so you know where they are at all times. Comfort Items Now that the mandatory items are taken care...

Why is Pneumonia More Dangerous for Seniors? – Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge

What is Pneumonia? Pneumonia is a type of lung infection that causes inflammation in the air sacs of one or both lungs. This inflammation results in the air sacs filling up with pus or fluid. This build up of fluid can make breathing more difficult as the lungs struggle to function effectively. When the lungs aren’t working properly it means the blood is not getting enough oxygen to provide adequate nutrients to the body’s cells. This is a major problem that can have dire consequences for seniors if not treated. What are the Symptoms of Pneumonia? The symptoms of pneumonia can vary considerably from case to case, making it a tough one to recognize right away. The symptoms of pneumonia may depend on age, overall health, and root cause of the illness. Seniors concerned about the possibility of pneumonia should watch for: Chest pain Phlegm-producing cough Fatigue Fever or chills Low body temp Loss of breath Vomiting or diarrhea What causes pneumonia? Pneumonia is most commonly caused by a bacterial or viral infection in the lungs. Bacterial Pneumonia A bacterial infection is a common cause of pneumonia in seniors. The most common type of bacteria resulting in pneumonia is called Streptococcus pneumoniae, which can affect just one lobe or the lungs in general. This type of pneumonia can develop during or after a cold or flu. Viral Pneumonia Viral pneumonia can also develop in the wake of a cold or flu and is typically a milder version of the disease. Fungal Pneumonia Fungal pneumonia is more prevalent in seniors with chronic illness or compromised immune systems. Why is pneumonia...

Which Vaccinations are Important for Seniors? – Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge

A lot of people think that vaccines are mainly for children, but there are certain vaccinations that are critical to seniors’ health and well being. In fact, it is estimated that somewhere around 50,000 adults across Canada and the United States die every year from illnesses and diseases that could have been prevented with vaccination. There are several known illnesses and diseases that can be prevented with vaccination. If not prevented, these illnesses can result in severe health complications and can even be fatal. So, what do seniors need to know about vaccinations? Vaccination & Immunization Are vaccination and immunization the same thing? Well, not exactly, but they are certainly connected. A vaccination is when a vaccine treatment is administered to help the immune system build up protection against a particular disease or illness. Vaccines are beaten or weakened versions of the illness that encourage the production of antibodies that help the body develop an immunity to that illness. Immunization occurs once the vaccine has done its intended job and the body is now immune to the targeted disease. Why are vaccines necessary for seniors? As we get older, our immune systems begin to weaken and are no longer quite as effective at protecting the body from illness and infection. This makes seniors more susceptible to contracting illnesses, and then also more likely to develop further health complications as a result. For example, even getting the flu can mean it turning into a more serious health issue. Also, seniors may not have been vaccinated when they were children, so should take the time to do it now. Even if...

5 Myths About Aging – Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge

It’s important for us to know the different between what is normal aging and what is a troublesome symptom. The assumption used to be that aging equaled a steady and predictable decline in our physical and mental abilities, but we have found that this isn’t true. Aging does not inevitably come with a slow and steady decline in our physical and mental abilities.  We are more likely to develop certain health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, or arthritis, but geriatricians emphasize that not all changes are age related; some changes may be from treatable conditions. Here are 5 myths about aging that should send you to your doctor. Myth 1: Forgetfulness There are going to be times when you misplace your glasses, or it takes longer to remember someone’s name; experts tell us that these changes are normal due in part because your brain contains more information as you age. Only 6-8% of people over 65 have memory challenges due to dementia, so don’t go jumping to conclusions. If you notice you are having many “senior moments” or are experiencing confusion along with more serious memory loss this may come from a treatable condition. A variety of conditions such as vitamin deficiencies, depression, sleep problems, chronic pain, changes in medication, urinary tract infections and metabolic disorders can all cause forgetfulness or confusion. See your doctor to discuss your memory challenges and your pharmacist to review your prescription medications and over-the-counter medications. Myth 2: Tooth loss Good oral care and regular check ups play an important role in maintaining good oral health amongst seniors. Compared to the oral health...
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