Tips for Senior Gardeners

Tips for Senior Gardeners


If you are a family caregiver for an elderly adult that enjoys gardening, you should be pleased that they have a fun hobby that keeps them active and outdoors. Gardening can also reduce stress and boost self-esteem in seniors, plus it gives them a sense of purpose and accomplishment. Of course, the benefit of fresh fruit, vegetables, and flowers is appealing as well. There’s no doubt that gardening is an ideal hobby for elderly adults.

Usually, family caregivers don’t think of gardening as dangerous or unsafe, but when it comes to elderly adults, there are a few things about gardening that can cause them some harm. Because of physical challenges, many seniors need to make modifications to their garden and their gardening habits as they age. When you and your elderly loved one follow these safety and health tips for senior gardeners, they’ll be able to enjoy their hobby for years to come.

Here are some tips for senior gardeners that family caregivers and elderly care providers should implement to keep them happy and healthy:

  • Build raised beds that let elderly gardeners plant, weed and harvest without bending, stooping or kneeling.
  • Set up a container garden in a variety of large pots and baskets set on their porch and patio for seniors in wheelchairs and walkers.
  • Purchase garden tools with large grips and thick foam handles so senior gardeners with arthritis can maintain a firm grip.
  • Provide a garden stool or bench so the elderly person can remain comfortable and stable as they work.
  • Ask elderly care providers to put sunscreen on the elderly gardener, plus lightweight long sleeves, sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat to prevent sunburn.
  • Keep several pairs of gardening gloves around to protect the elderly person’s hands and thinning skin from cuts and scrapes.
  • Instruct elderly care providers to keep the aging adult hydrated as they garden so they don’t suffer from heatstroke.
  • Allow the senior gardener to be outside in the early morning or late afternoon to avoid the worst of the UV rays and hot temperatures.
  • Scale back the size of the garden to best fit the elderly adult’s abilities and needs. Too much garden can be overwhelming and frustrating.
  • Let elderly care providers do the heavy lifting of pots, equipment and more so the elderly gardener doesn’t overexert themselves.
  • Keep a watchful eye out for uneven paths and other obstacles that could cause a slip and fall accident.


When it comes to gardening, seniors can do as much as they want when they and family caregivers implement a few modifications. Over time, it may be more necessary to scale back the size and scope of the garden to fit into their ability. It’s in an elderly gardener’s best interest to keep going as long as they want to because gardening is good for both the body and the mind.


If you or an aging loved-one are considering Senior Care in Inverness, IL, please contact the caring staff at Inspired Care Home Health today. Call and talk to our friendly caring staff at 847-787-7572.




Pay Attention to These Three Warning Signs of Self-Neglect in Seniors

Pay Attention to These Three Warning Signs of Self-Neglect in Seniors

Self-neglect is one of those things you’d never expect to happen to your parents. They’ve always been on top of everything. Your mom has always loved to cook and offered multiple vegetables and fiber-rich sides at every meal. Your dad insisted on being shaved, showered, and dressed in clean, stain-free clothing even on days there were no plans to do anything.

As they age, their attention to personal needs diminish. Arthritis pain can make it hard to keep up with daily chores. Decreasing cognitive skills may be interfering with daily activities of living.

Are your parents at risk of self-neglect? Watch for these three warning signs. If you’ve noticed any of these issues, your parents may argue and refuse to change. It’s important to start a discussion about getting help to keep your parents safe.


Grooming and Personal Care Get Ignored

Your dad takes off his socks and his toenails are so long they’re starting to curl. This is out of character as he was always cutting his nails and carrying nail clippers in his pocket. That’s one sign of self-neglect.

Your mom and dad are skipping showers. Your mom stopped shaving her legs and armpits, which is out of character. You’ve noticed body odor from time to time. Skin is dry and flaky. Your parent hasn’t had a haircut in years. These are all signs that your parent is neglecting his or her needs.


Clothing is Worn for Days Without Washing

Your mom has worn the same pair of jeans for weeks. They’re threadbare and dirty. You buy her new jeans, and she’ll wear those for weeks. She’s wearing the same shirts and sweaters. You haven’t seen your parents do laundry in weeks. They become frustrated when you offer to help.


They Stick to Freezer Meals and Takeout

Your parents stopped cooking meals. They fill the freezer with microwavable dinners. Most of the time, you find fast food bags or takeout packaging in their trash. There’s nothing healthy in their fridge. It seems the only food they’re eating is quick, easy-to-prepare items that are loaded with preservatives, sugar, fat, and salt.

When self-neglect is obvious, it may not be easy to get your parents to admit they need help. They may refuse to discuss it and shut down all conversation. You might have to enlist the help of a family doctor or respected friend.

Make sure you don’t use an accusing tone. Express your concern and say it would make you feel proud if you could help your parents. Once you have them at a point where they’re willing to accept help, look into elder care services.
They may resist at first, but as they get accustomed to having caregivers help with laundry, cleaning, and meals, they’ll start to enjoy having less to worry about. Call an elder care agency for more tips on getting your parent ready to have senior care services that reduce the risk of self-neglect.


If you or an aging loved-one are considering Elder Care in Arlington Heights, IL, please contact the caring staff at Inspired Care Home Health today. Call and talk to our friendly caring staff at 847-787-7572.


What Should Be In Your Aging Parent’s Emergency Kit?

What Should Be In Your Aging Parent’s Emergency Kit?

One of the most important steps that you can take to prepare your aging parent during emergencies such as hurricanes is to create a supply kit. An emergency supply kit should be equipped with the items your parent would need to help them through the emergency situation in the best way possible. These items will keep them safe and comfortable, and allow them to fulfill their basic needs even during challenging times such as power outages.

Some items that should be in your aging parent’s emergency kit include:

  • Non-perishable food. Make sure that your parent has enough high nutrition, non-perishable food in their kit to last for at least three days, and more if there is adequate space. This food should be easy to prepare and not require heat or special tools other than a can opener. Include enough food for anyone else who might be in the home with your parents, such as a home care provider or you.
  • Potable water. When emergencies strike, running water is often compromised. It is vital that your parent has enough potable water in their kit for at least seven days. Also, include potable water for hygiene needs including brushing teeth and bathing.
  • First aid kit. Minor health issues are common during emergencies. Include a first aid kit that has what your parent would need to address a minor injury or illness such as over-the-counter medications, bandages, antiseptic wipes, and others.
  • Hygiene items. Your parent will be more comfortable if they can maintain their personal hygiene as much as possible even during an emergency. Wipes, waterless toothbrushes, and other such items can be invaluable for this.
  • Entertainment. Weather emergencies often mean long stretches without power. This can mean boredom. Make these stretches easier by including simple entertainment such as books, adult coloring books, puzzles, and games.
  • Light. Do not use candles during an emergency. Include flashlights and extra batteries, making sure that there are enough for your parent and others who might be in the home with them.
  • Communication. A battery or crank-operated radio, a mobile device, and an emergency battery are basic needs that will allow your parent to remain in communication with others and stay informed about what is happening.
  • Comfort. Clean, versatile clothing, a dry pair of shoes, blankets, a pillow, and towels can all make a tremendous difference in your parent’s comfort during an emergency, especially if they have to evacuate their home. Be sure items are clearly labeled.

Starting home care for your aging parents
can be a fantastic way to help them enjoy a higher quality of life as they age in place. The highly personalized services provided by an in-home senior care services provider can allow your parent to pursue a lifestyle that is more independent, active, and fulfilling while also ensuring they have the support and care necessary to manage their individual challenges and limitations.

Even if your aging parent is largely independent and has only mild to moderate needs, the personalized support and attention from a home care provider can be valuable. This assistance can help your parent to stay more active, enjoy more time out of the house, save time and energy, and experience more physical, mental, and social activity throughout their later years. As their family caregiver, this can give you peace of mind knowing that they will be in good hands both when you are able to be with them, and when you are not.


If you or an aging loved-one are considering Home Care Services in Des Plaines, IL, please contact the caring staff at Inspired Care Home Health today. Call and talk to our friendly caring staff at 847-787-7572.


Why Is it So Difficult to Stop Worrying as a Caregiver?

Why Is it So Difficult to Stop Worrying as a Caregiver?

Lots of caregivers find themselves trapped in a cycle of worrying about their aging adult and her health. The problem is that worrying doesn’t actually get you anywhere. But it will burn a lot of your mental energy, which you need for other caregiving duties.

You Might Subconsciously Feel the Worrying Serves a Purpose

Worrying doesn’t really do anything, but it’s really easy to fall into the belief that it really does do something. It becomes a superstition for some people, in fact. They start to believe that as long as they’re worrying about something really bad happening, that action is what is working so hard to keep that really bad situation from coming true. But the reality is that no matter whether you’re worrying or not, if something bad is going to happen to your elderly family member, it still might.

You Feel Out of Control and Worrying Is Something to Do

Much about being a caregiver feels out of control, especially if your elderly family member is experiencing serious health problems. When your brain takes off on a worrying tangent, you might mistakenly feel as if you’re really doing something. You’re not accomplishing anything at all, but it feels as if you are to your brain.

It’s a Distraction from What’s Happening

Speaking of your brain, worrying can serve as a marvelous distraction from what’s going on. Your brain can become so occupied with worrying that you literally cannot focus on anything else. This isn’t a good situation to be in, because there is probably plenty that you really do need to be focused on that you can do something about.

Talk to Someone Who Can Help

Kicking the worrying habit is admittedly not easy. If you’ve been doing this for a long time in other situations, your brain is used to going through these gyrations and it will keep you locked in the worry cycle. Working with a therapist you can trust can give you tools that you can use to break that habit and to learn to replace worrying with a different coping mechanism. As you become more used to leaving worrying behind, you can start to see how much that habit was holding you back.

Even though worrying isn’t all that productive, it’s an easy habit to fall back into. Do what you can to put some practices in place that help you to avoid worrying when you start to feel the urge to do so.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering Elderly Care in Park Ridge, IL, please contact the caring staff at Inspired Care Home Health today. Call and talk to our friendly caring staff at 847-787-7572.


What Should Someone with Parkinson’s Disease Eat?

What Should Someone with Parkinson’s Disease Eat?

Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a condition that affects around one million people in the United States.

It’s a mysterious disease that can affect people differently. The more family caregivers know about PD, the more confident they can be in caring for an older adult with PD. April is the perfect time to learn about PD because it’s National Parkinson’s Awareness Month. One of the things that people often have questions about is what kind of diet a person with PD should follow.


How Parkinson’s Affects Eating

Because PD affects the way a person moves, they can have difficulty eating. It can be hard for them to control their movements, making it hard to keep food from falling off the fork or for the hand to get to the mouth. People with PD may have other symptoms that affect eating, too. They might become constipated easily. They may also have difficulty swallowing, or medications may make them feel sick to their stomach. All these things can affect the types of food the older adult can eat or the way the foods need to be prepared.


Eating with Parkinson’s

There isn’t a specific diet for people with PD. Instead, doctors recommend that PD patients eat an overall balanced diet. Eating well can improve the senior’s general health. It can also help the medications and treatments for PD to work better. Here are some tips for helping a senior with PD to eat well:

-Include plenty of fruits and vegetables, which provide important nutrients and help the senior feel more energetic.

-Foods that contain plenty of fiber can prevent constipation. They can also help regulate blood pressure.

-Some foods can cause medication side effects. Talk to the doctor about the medications your aging relative is taking, and which foods may cause problems.

-Find out if the medications the senior is taking will work better if meals are timed a certain way or if they contain certain foods.

-Make sure the older adult drinks lots of water so they stay hydrated.

-Don’t serve beverages with foods as they can increase the risk of choking.

-Serve room temperature or cool foods if the smell of warm foods causes nausea.

Elder care can assist people with PD to eat better. An elder care provider can prepare nutritious foods according to the doctor’s recommendations. An elder care provider can also make sure the senior gets enough fluids to avoid dehydration and constipation. If the older adult has difficulty eating on their own, an elder care provider can assist them by steadying their hand as they eat or by holding the fork themselves.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering Homecare in Des Plaines, IL, please contact the caring staff at Inspired Care Home Health today. Call and talk to our friendly caring staff at 847-787-7572.



Let Home Care Assistants Help After Traumatic Brain Injury in Elderly Adults

Let Home Care Assistants Help After Traumatic Brain Injury in Elderly Adults

Many family members across the country suddenly find themselves in a caregiver status to an elderly relative has an accident that results in traumatic brain injury (TBI). Adults over the age of 75 have some of the highest rates of TBI and the majority are due to falls. Most elderly adults will need part-time or full-time care due to the long-lasting effects of their injury.


Causes and Symptoms of Traumatic Brain Injury

The leading cause of TBI in the elderly is due to slip and fall accidents, but motor vehicle accidents and violence are also contributors. Studies also show that older seniors lead the way when it comes to hospitalization and fatalities for traumatic brain injuries. These kinds of injuries are quite complex to diagnose, and many different symptoms may manifest. In all cases, however, TBI causes a range of physical and emotional impairments and disabilities.

The results of a TBI can be mild or serious. In mild cases, elderly adults may experience dizziness, lack of focus, poor memory and mood swings. In more serious injuries, they may suffer from poor cognitive ability, seizures, loss of coordination and balance, loss of body function control and communication problems. Often after being in the hospital for initial treatment, doctors recommend that elderly adults with a TBI go to a rehabilitation center for continued treatment. Depending on the severity of the injury and the progress made there, many seniors can then return home.


Home Care Assistance for Elderly Adults With Traumatic Brain Injuries

Caring for an elderly person with a TBI is hard, especially when family members have other responsibilities in their own life. That’s why so many families turn to home care agencies for assistance with personal care. So, in addition to making some changes to the home, such as installing grab bars in the bathroom, family members can hire a home care assistant to be there for the recovering senior.

A home care agency provides trained professionals to work with elderly adults of all abilities to assist them with daily tasks that they cannot otherwise do themselves. This can include duties such as bathing, dressing, grooming, hygiene, cleaning, meal preparation, driving and household maintenance. For seniors with a TBI, the home care aides can be there as often as they need to. As the needs of the elderly adult change, family members can make adjustments for more services or less.

When families must handle the unexpected and life-changing effects that a sudden injury to the brain causes, they want what’s best for their aging relative. Home care assistance provides a professional and trained approach to senior care that ensures the elderly adult continues down the path of recovery. Instead of living in a long-term care facility, the aging senior gets all the help they need with daily personal care tasks at home, where they are more comfortable and content.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering Senior Care in Lake Zurich, IL, please contact the caring staff at Inspired Care Home Health today. Call and talk to our friendly caring staff at 847-787-7572.



Shouldn’t Seniors Avoid Exercise?

Shouldn’t Seniors Avoid Exercise?

Too many people are under the impression that exercise and activity aren’t appropriate as part of an elderly adult’s daily routine.

The truth is that unless exercise has been prohibited by a doctor, seniors can benefit just as much as younger people when it comes to a more active lifestyle. Not only does exercise boost overall health and wellness, it can help reduce the risk for numerous health issues related to old age.


Family caregivers can play a big part in helping their elderly loved ones get excited about exercising. In many cases, senior care assistants can also help aging adults get moving for their health.


Exercising is for Everyone, Including Seniors

It’s easy to understand why many elderly adults and their family members have some concerns when it comes to exercising in old age. The body changes, which makes it harder to stay active. It’s common for elderly adults to struggle with chronic illnesses, reduced heart and lung capacity, more balance issues and less muscle mass. Seniors are also less flexible and may feel more fatigue during the day. All these reasons and more are why many elderly adults and their families believe that exercise should be avoided.

Exercise for seniors doesn’t have to mean running marathons or joining a gym. There are plenty of age-appropriate activities and exercises that can suit every senior’s ability. From tai chi and water aerobics to a peaceful daily walk through the park, exercise comes in many forms. Elderly adults can even do chair aerobics, wheelchair exercises and stretches with the help of a senior care assistant. Age should never stop someone from getting fit and staying active.


Benefits of Exercise for Seniors

Exercise and physical activity are good for just about everyone, including older adults. If an elderly person is having a hard time feeling motivated to get up and get moving, they can rely on a senior care assistant to be their coach and cheerleader. Some of the health benefits of exercise for the elderly include stronger muscles to reduce the risk of falling, better balance, lower risk of heart attacks and strokes, stronger bones, and weight loss. Some studies even link regular exercise to a lowered risk of developing dementia.

Elderly adults usually do better with shorter and more frequent exercise increments. For example, a senior care aide can arrange for 10- to 15-minute exercise sessions a few times per day. This could incorporate things like a walk, a senior aerobics class, or even a stationary bike. No matter how old or what their ability, aging adults can build strength and get healthy with a senior care assistant that encourages them to stay active.

It’s all too common for aging adults to embrace a lifestyle where they take it easy due to their age. The truth is, they will be happier and healthier and even add some years to their life if they exercise. Family members and senior care assistants can lend the support and encouragement that seniors need to embrace a more active lifestyle.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering Homecare in Palatine, IL, please contact the caring staff at Inspired Care Home Health today. Call and talk to our friendly caring staff at 847-787-7572.





Is Falling Really a Risk for Your Senior?

Is Falling Really a Risk for Your Senior?

Whether you’ve been caring for your parent for years or you are just getting started on your family caregiver journey, one issue that you have likely heard a considerable amount about is a fall risk. The potential dangers of falling for seniors is heavily emphasized in the senior community, and this may make you wonder how big a risk falls actually are, and if you should be concerned about your elderly parents experiencing it such an accident.


Some things that you should know about fall risk for elderly adults include:

-Each year throughout the United States that there are more than 29 million falls among older adults

-Approximately 7 million older adults are seriously injured in falls each year

-Seniors who have suffered falls spend approximately twice as long in the hospital as those who have been admitted for other causes

-The older your senior gets, the higher the risk that they will suffer a fall

-Senior women are at higher risk of suffering falls and serious injuries associated with these falls than men

-Approximately 30% of all seniors over the age of 64 in the United States experience of fall each year

-More than 60% of those seniors who fall will experience a subsequent fall within 6 months

-Approximately 9,500 older adults die as a result of a fall in the United States each year

-Among those older adults between the ages of 65 and 69, one out of every 200 falls results in a hip fracture

-Among those older adults 85 years and older, one out of every ten falls results in a hip fracture

-Approximately 25% of seniors who break a hip while falling will die within 6 months of the injury


For many elderly adults, the most pressing and serious effect of falling is a diminished quality of life and functioning following injury associated with a fall

Starting elderly care can be a fantastic way to help your parent maintain their quality of life, manage their needs and challenges, and find meaning and fulfillment in their later years. This elderly home care services provider can be with your parent on a customized schedule to ensure that they are with your senior when it is right for them according to not just to their needs and challenges, but also to the amount of care that you are already able to provide. This means that your parent will always have access to the care, support, and assistance that will help them to stay happy, healthy, safe, and comfortable. These highly personalized services can also help your parent to pursue a greater level of independence, engagement, and fulfillment throughout their later years.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering a Home Care Service in Palatine, IL, please contact the caring staff at Inspired Care Home Health today. Call and talk to our friendly caring staff at 847-787-7572.


Discover How Crime Solving is Improving Cognitive Function and Socialization in Seniors

Discover How Crime Solving is Improving Cognitive Function and Socialization in Seniors

Mystery dinner theater has been a popular event for decades. Some senior centers are discovering that murder mystery dinners benefit seniors in three big ways. First, it gets seniors out of their homes and socializing with others. Second, the crime-solving aspect can help exercise the brain. Third, seniors eat a full, nutrition-packed meal. Here’s what you need to know.


What is a Murder Mystery Dinner?

Murder mystery dinners are often held in restaurants, community centers, or conference rooms in inns or hotels. Participants enjoy a multi-course meal typically a soup or salad, the entree, non-alcoholic beverages, and a dessert. As they eat or in between courses, a murder takes place. Diners then get to talk to others, including the actors who are the key participants in the murder. During these talks, they take notes, pick out the clues, and try to solve the crime.


What Kind of Performances Take Place?

The scripts used in a murder mystery dinner vary. It’s rare that you’ll find a mystery you’ve heard or read before. Here are some of the murder shows that have taken place at senior centers.

At a senior center in New Hampshire, seniors gathered for a mystery dinner involving a murder at a mafia don’s speakeasy. Dinner began with a salad. From there, seniors chose from a menu or baked ziti, stuffed shells, or chicken cacciatore. Beverages and a cash bar were available.

The Dinner Detective hosts murder mystery dinners around the country. The shows blend comedy with the murder, and diners can even become prime suspects. Passed starters are followed by a salad. From there, diners enjoy a choice of things like grilled cod, bruschetta chicken, or vegetarian lasagna. Non-alcoholic beverages are included, and there is a cash bar available.


What Does It Cost?

You pay one flat fee for the theatrical performance and the meal. Prices depend on the restaurant and performers, but it’s rare that you’ll pay more than $50. Considering the meal, social opportunity, and crime solving aspect, it’s a great price for a night of fun.


Make Socialization and Cognitive Exercise Part of the Daily Routine

If you’re worried about your mom or dad’s cognitive function, seek a medical opinion. A doctor who specializes in memory decline can help your parent stay as active as possible through memory exercises and prescription medications.

Home care services lend a helping hand to ensure your parent can age at home. With services ranging from meal preparation to laundry, your mom or dad has help without giving up independence.


If you or an aging loved-one are considering Home Care in Inverness, IL, please contact the caring staff at Inspired Care Home Health today. Call and talk to our friendly caring staff at 847-787-7572.


What Sorts of Treatment Do Bruises Require?

What Sorts of Treatment Do Bruises Require?


What Sorts of Treatment Do Bruises Require?

Whether or not your senior needs additional treatment for bruising depends on quite a few factors. If the bruises are not very common and fade fairly quickly, her doctor may tell you not to worry about them.


Most of the Time, Bruises Are Fine on Their Own

For the most part, bruises are something that your elderly family member’s body can handle on its own. If her body is struggling with other health conditions or she’s temporarily weakened, bruises can take a longer time to heal. Getting enough sleep, proper nutrition, and generally being healthy often means that there’s not much you can do to help bruises heal faster. If your senior is bruising a lot, though, she needs to talk with her doctor.


Learn What Causes Bruises on Your Senior

Your elderly family member’s doctor can help you to determine what is causing bruises to form. She may be taking medications that are making it easier for her to bruise or she may have an underlying health condition that contributes. Once you know what is going on, you can find ways to help avoid bruising if at all possible.


Try Cold Compresses Right Away

Some bruises might heal faster if you are able to use an ice pack right away on the area. Just a few minutes is often enough to slow down the bruising and reduce any swelling or pain in the area. Be sure to ask your senior’s doctor if this is something that she can do in the event that she bumps herself and realizes that it’s starting to bruise.


Do What You Can to Avoid Bruises

Rearranging the furniture and adding grab bars around your senior’s home may be enough to help her to avoid bumping into things that could bruise her. You may also want to check to see that her shoes are sturdy and fit her well so that she has stable footing. Look for other ways to help her to avoid bumping into anything that might cause a bruise.

Make sure that you let other family members and senior care providers know what the routine is if your senior does get a new bruise. The faster that they can help her to manage a new bruise, hopefully, the less painful it will be for her.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering Caregivers in Barrington, IL, please contact the caring staff at Inspired Care Home Health today. Call and talk to our friendly caring staff at 847-787-7572.