Important News on Vaccination: Updates & Benefits

The likelihood of severe complications for any caregiver who gets the virus — along with the public health consequences of the pandemic continuing its course.

Stopping a pandemic is of really high importance today. Still, it requires us to use all the tools we have available.

FACT! Wearing masks, using sanitizers, and social distancing help reduce your chance of being exposed to the virus or spreading it to others. Meanwhile, these measures are far from enough.

In that case, getting a vaccine is the only way to combat the virus. Vaccines work with your immune system, so it will be ready to fight the virus if you are exposed.

IMPORTANT! All caregivers who are not vaccinated till October 1st won’t be able to continue working on cases.

Vaccination Insensitive Backed Up by New York Authorities

Currently, NYC authorities are trying to sweeten the vaccine deal by offering cash and other benefits for everyone who will get vaccinated. Here are some of the most beneficial offers you can opt for right away.

 $100 OR Other Benefits from The NYC

If you get your first vaccine dose at a New York City-run vaccine location or through the City’s in-home vaccination program, you will be eligible to choose one of these incentives:

  1. $100 prepaid debit card
  2. New York City Football Club tickets
  3. Brooklyn Cyclones tickets
  4. NYC Ferry 10-Ride Pass
  5. Statue of Liberty and accompanying ferry ticket
  6. NYC Public Markets gift cards ($25)
  7. Public Theater annual membership
  8. Two-week membership to Citibike
  9. Snug Harbor family membership
  10. Family fun wristband and free ride on the Cyclone at Luna Park in Coney Island

Click here for details or here to schedule an appointment.

Up to $150 from “Flex for Checks” Program

The National Minority Health Association offers $75 for every COVID-19 vaccine shot ($150 for two shots). To receive the money, please do the following:

  1. Click this link https://worker.flexforchecks.com/?id=NMHA-NY0002 
  2. Register and remember/write down your login information
  3. Take your COVID-19 vaccine shot
  4. Log in to your account and upload proof of vaccination
  5. Repeat #3-4 for the second vaccination shot

Transportation Assistance

New York City is the first major U.S. city to require anyone to dine indoors at a restaurant, work out at a gym, or grab a cocktail at a bar to prove they’ve been inoculated from COVID-19. Source

Call All Heart Homecare Agency at 718-627-0300 if you have any questions.

Note: All Heart Homecare Agency is not an organizer of any of the incentives listed above. We will not be responsible for any delays, payment problems, or service quality issues.

3 Fun Ways to Celebrate Senior Citizens’ Day

The elderly population in the United States continues to grow annually. If we pay attention to the global population trend, the number of older adults over 65 will reach 1 billion people by 2025.

Meanwhile, seniors can boast unique life experiences, knowledge, and understanding of life. Luckily, August 21 is Senior Citizens’ Day – a national holiday held in the United States and designed to express gratitude to the elderly family members and all the seniors in our life.

A Few Interesting Facts

  • President Ronald Reagan founded the holiday in 1988
  • On average, the number of seniors in the United States is 40.3 million
  • More than 28% of people over 65 are still independent and active
  • More than 16% of older people still work

Here are some exciting ideas for how you can celebrate Senior Citizens’ Day with your family members or patients.

#1 Make This Day Special for Them

Everyday life is hectic. Therefore, we often do not pay attention to the little things that can please our loved ones. Even a short walk in the park can cheer up older adults and positively impact their mental health.

It’s no secret that older people often experience depression and cognitive decline due to the constant stay at their homes. If your patient has difficulty getting around, stay at home and share life stories over a cup of tea. It will make their day!

#2 Become a Volunteer in Projects Devoted to Improving the Lives of Seniors

Even if your elderly relatives are too far away, you can still do your bit to help the elderly in your area. Take part in various programs where volunteers help older people carry out daily tasks that they can no longer do independently.

These are elementary ones, such as helping to buy groceries or delivering medicines from the pharmacy.

#3 Have a Festive Dinner or Family BBQ

Celebrating Senior Citizens’ Day at a festive table couldn’t be easier. Remember that a holiday can help seniors feel special and needed.

These things are truly capable of doing wonders and boosting an older person’s self-esteem. You can also invite your friends to make the holiday even more fun and interesting. Remember that the primary purpose of the holiday is to honor the elderly population.

Cook the older person’s favorite meals, play their favorite music or watch a classic family comedy. Such moments will help them feel needed and surrounded with care.

Tips for the Perfect Doctor Visit with A Patient

If you have been caring for a patient for a long time, then you probably know that you may encounter various challenges when heading to a doctor’s appointment. Most often, this applies to numerous questions about the health of an older adult.

We interviewed dozens of experienced caregivers and learned essential tips on visiting the doctor as comfortable and practical as possible both – for you and your patient.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • Bring the patient’s insurance card with you
  • Study your patient health history
  • Make a list of all medicines the senior take
  • Take notes

Prepare Doctor’s Visit in Advance

Recent studies have shown that caregivers who prepared for a doctor’s appointment witnessed that their patients received more attention and answers to questions.

The whole point is that if you write down your patient’s medical problems in advance and the dosage of medications that an older adult takes, then a doctor’s appointment will be much more effective.

You can also copy the patient’s health notes and give them to the treating doctor on your next visit. This will help a doctor complete the medical record and consider the patient’s current health status.

Tell More About Your Patient Health Observations

As a caregiver, you know better than anyone else how your patient is doing. Such information is vital for the attending physician, who needs to track the dynamics of changes in an older person’s health.

The doctor will most likely ask you the following questions:

  • Have you noticed sudden changes in your patient’s appetite?
  • Does the patient have sleep problems?
  • Where does the patient feel pain?
  • What is the nature of the pain?
  • Do you make sure the patient is hydrated throughout the day?

Don’t Try to Hold It All in Memory

If your patient is taking many medications, it is best to write down their names on a separate sheet and show them to the doctor. Also, do not forget to indicate the dosage and frequency of medication.

NOTE! Do not forget to mention if your patient is allergic to any medicinal components.

Don’t Miss Out on Details

Try to tell the doctor even the slightest changes that have occurred to the patient since the last visit. It’s not just about changes in behavior. Try to remember if the patient’s eating habits have changed, maybe there has been an increase in body temperature, or the patient has experienced headaches – it all matters!

At first glance, it may seem that these nuances are not at all significant. However, the doctor assesses the health condition according to various factors – even the most minor details can be vital.

Feel Free to Ask Any Questions

If you are concerned about your patient’s health, then feel free to ask a doctor about it. Suppose you are worried that a senior cannot sleep for a long time. Share your observations and ask how you could help the patient.

The more answers you get – the better the treatment will be!

How to Get a Senior to Drink More Water

Preventing dehydration is very important, especially for older patients. Water imbalance can cause serious health problems and become one of the leading causes of hospitalization in older people over 65.

If you want to keep your patient’s water balance at the proper level, we are ready to share creative tips on motivating your patient to drink more water.

Various Sources of Fluids

If dehydration is a severe problem for your patient, then you may need to make a compromise. One of the easiest ways is to allow older people to consume less healthy options like sugary drinks or diet soda.

This method works well, especially for cases where an older adult deliberately avoids drinking liquids or does not realize the fundamental importance of maintaining water balance.

Be sure to consult with the patient’s doctor not to harm the health of an older person. This way, you will know for sure that the disadvantages of drinks with sweeteners do not exceed the benefits.

Always Keep Water Nearby

Sometimes seniors do not want to use the help of others and prefer to drink water on their own. To make this easier, just place a small jug of water and a cup near the place where your patient spends most of the time.

Make sure that the pot of water is comfortable and light. In this case, you can also monitor the amount of water that an older adult consumes during the day.

Use Smart Apps

Caregivers often have to deal with too many daily tasks. Therefore, specialists can easily lose sight of minor details.

This concerns the amount of fluid that a patient consumes during the day. Do not try to memorize the number of cups or the amount of liquid that a senior drank.

Instead, you can download one of the thousands of mobile apps that track fluid intake. The app reminds you when you should ask a patient to drink some water. Don’t forget to analyze the results at the end of the day.

Experiment with Drinks of Different Temperatures

Do some experimentation and try to figure out which fluid temperature is more appropriate for your patient. Some older people prefer to drink water at room temperature. In contrast, others prefer cool drinks, especially in the summer. Try offering chilled tea or slightly warmed juice.

Make Fruit Ice Cream

Homemade popsicles are a great way to quench thirst and encourage your patient to consume more fluids.

Homemade popsicles are made from fruit juice diluted with a bit of water. Ask which fruits your patients like the most. Next, make popsicles based on their preferences.

Conclusions

Some older people do show unexplained resistance to drinking liquids. If you are faced with a similar situation, then try offering a patient such delicious variations as:

  • Chilled milkshake
  • Fruit smoothie
  • Iced tea and so on.

If your patient likes the taste and composition of a drink, you can easily take care of the correct water balance of the senior during the day.

The Perfect Barbecue for Seniors

Summer has already arrived, which means it’s finally time to get the grill going for the family gatherings! But how can we ensure that a BBQ is a good choice for someone like seniors who have an accommodating diet. Grilling meat and vegetables is an excellent occasion for the whole family to come together. More importantly, grilling is one of the healthiest ways to prepare food.

Here are some excellent tips to make your family barbecue even more fun and delicious!

Choosing the Right Meat

Almost every supermarket boasts a vast assortment of different meat products. However, not every type of meat can be useful even after minimal thermal processing.

Therefore, nutritionists recommend giving preference to:

  • Fish
  • Chicken
  • Turkey

When it comes to chicken or turkey, the breast should be skinned before frying. Grilled fish is also one of the best ways to prepare wholesome foods loaded with healthy fats.

To preserve all the beneficial properties of grilled fish and make it juicy, you will need to:

  • Wrap marinated fish fillet in a foil
  • Grill until tender

NOTE: If you plan to grill red meat, then opt for low-fat beef or pork loins.

Eat Small Portions

Overeating very often becomes one of the leading causes of problems with the gastrointestinal tract. According to nutritionists, the optimal meat portion is 3 to 6 ounces.

Some of you may say that these portions are too small. In this case, you can add tasty vegetables that have also been grilled or other side dishes.

The Marinade

The marinade is one of the most critical ingredients in grilling meat and vegetables. Marinade and savory spices can give fish or meat a fantastic aroma and taste. Use no more than 1/2 cup of the marinade or one tablespoon of seasoning for every pound of meat.

If you prefer to use dry marinades, then you can mix the following spice components:

  • Allspice
  • Chili powder
  • Cinnamon
  • Caraway
  • Garlic Powder
  • Pepper
  • Rosemary

Use as Many Vegetables as Possible

Almost all the vegetables you eat in your daily diet can be used for grilling. The combination of fried vegetables and meat is delicious and brings a huge benefit to the body. For example, onions are great for helping your stomach cope with the digestion of meat.

In any case, we recommend that you chop the vegetables into large pieces, brush them with olive oil and fry them on both sides.

Here’s a list of the most delicious vegetables to use for grilling:

  • Asparagus
  • Avocado
  • Bell pepper
  • Corn
  • Zucchini
  • Onion
  • Potatoes
  • Mushrooms

What About Dessert?

Almost all fruits are rich in such a component as fructose. It is an excellent sugar substitute. When grilling fruit, the natural sugar caramelizes and gives any dessert an amazing taste and unforgettable aroma.

The most common fruits for grilling are:

  • Apples
  • Bananas
  • pineapples
  • Pears
  • Nectarine
  • Fig

Keep Grill Clean

Without a doubt, cleaning the grill is not the most enjoyable part of a family barbecue. However, keeping the grill clean is a must. Leaving burnt pieces of meat or vegetables on the wire rack can make your food bitter next time. Use special brushes to clean the grill – the process will take no more than 10 minutes.

Eat right and have a good grill!

The Reality of Caring for A Patient with Terminal Illness

It is a well-known fact that the job of a caregiver is not an easy walk. Sometimes home care professionals have to deal with cases when their patient has a terminal illness. In such cases, caregivers may have increased concerns about timely medication intake, treatment options, end-of-life-care level, and so on.

As the physical state of health deteriorates, a patient becomes more dependent on a caregiver. This imposes a certain level of stress as the specialist struggles to provide a patient with care and at the same time helps to cope with the daily tasks.

Some might argue that timely support from family and friends can be the most effective way to relieve stress in the workplace. However, this is not the case. Therefore, we have compiled the most commonly used approaches that have helped caregivers perform their duties efficiently, caring for a patient with a terminal illness.

Keep Sense of Control

It is usual for each person to react differently to the news of a terminal illness. However, almost every patient faced with a similar situation can become closed from the outside world and feel depressed.

As a caregiver, try to maintain a sense of control and provide ongoing emotional support for a senior. You can also ask the patient’s family members to spend as much time as possible with the older person to help cope with the heavy burden.

Try to Be Sincere and Open

Try to be open and honest in everything you discuss with your patient. Involve an older person in conversations on a variety of topics and discussions. Don’t worry if your patient stays closed at first.

Over time, your conversations will take on a whole new level, and you’ll begin to share your thoughts and feelings. Ask about the patient’s deepest desire.

FACT, the feedback and reaction of an older person will largely depend on his/her health condition.

Stick to the Daily Plan

Organize your workplace responsibilities and adhere to a plan for all your daily tasks. This will help a patient better understand your daily routine and feel more comfortable at home. Handling all the responsibilities on time will surely improve your patient’s self-esteem.

Maintain Spiritual Condition of a Senior

We all have our own beliefs and faith. Perhaps religion is a vital aspect for your patient. Note, the spiritual element can bring a particular meaning to the concept of life and death.

Depending on what their need is, you can support seniors accordingly. For example, a patient might ask you to turn on religious songs and listen to an audio recording of the Holy Scriptures.

In fact, practical advice on dealing with a patient with a terminal illness differs from case to case. Do not be afraid to show patience and kindness to please a senior’s slightest desire and lighten such an unbearable burden.

4 Ways to Prevent Back Pain and Injuries On the Job

Often, caregivers are primarily concerned with the safety and health of their patients. For this reason, their own health and well-being are very often left in the background.

It’s no secret that working as a caregiver is associated with a lot of stress and physical activity. Therefore, it is no wonder that lots of home care specialists face injuries and back pain.

Your spine and back health are crucial to your overall health. We’re giving tips on how you can protect your back to protect your health.  Moreover, we will check the proven technique for lifting patients so that you can save your back in daily activities.

# 1 Tip: Stretch It Out

Get in the habit of doing a little workout of your back muscles a few minutes before you start caring for the patient. Smooth and thoughtful stretching techniques help maintain muscle flexibility and improve endurance.

Most importantly, stretching helps reduce back pain and potential injury. Also, remember to stretch your back throughout the day to keep your muscles toned.

# 2 Tip: Maintain Correct Posture

Try analyzing your posture while sitting or standing. Often, we do not pay attention to the position of our spine, which can lead to a weakening of the back muscles and the occurrence of injuries.

Try to avoid positions in which the head and shoulders are tilted forward. If you spend most of your day in a seated position, try to choose a chair with good back support and place your feet on the floor.

Choosing and buying the right footwear is also a crucial step for proper posture. Basically, you need a model with good arch support and cushioning.

Keep in mind that the constant wearing of shoes with heels can also provoke pain in the lower back.

# 3 Tip: Consume Vitamins

The constant stress associated with caring for a patient can directly affect your eating habits and damage muscle elasticity and bone hardness.

You may think that a quick snack is the preferred form of eating. However, if you stick to the wrong diet for a long time, it can lead to disastrous results.

Ideally, you need to eat nutrient-dense foods and also combine them with vitamin supplements. If you really want to take care of your health, consult with your doctor about what supplements you can take to improve the condition of muscles, bones, and joints.

# 4 Tip: Use The Right Lifting Technique

If you often have to lift a patient, the correct mechanics will protect your back, shoulders, and neck from potential injuries.

Use the following tips to safely lift a patient:

  1. Ensure that your feet are on a firm surface and are as close to a senior as possible.
  2. After that, you need to stand face to face with the person you plan to lift and bend your knees. Try to keep your abdominal and back muscles straight – this will help you increase your lift power and keep your muscles safe from increased stress.
  3. Try to lift the patient in a gentle motion by pushing the leg muscles upward.

Remember that if you frequently have to roll over the patient or lift heavy objects, using a back brace to support the muscles may be the only right solution. A back brace will help you strengthen your lower back and significantly reduce the risk of injury.

How to Deal with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

How do you know if you have faced post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)? If you have experienced some stressful events, then your nervous system may react with the fight-or-flight response.

If this happens, you may feel a rapid heartbeat, increased blood pressure, or muscle tension. Moreover, in such moments your strength and reaction speed increases significantly.

However, once the danger has passed, your nervous system will gradually begin to calm your body and lower your heart rate. The same goes for blood pressure, which will also return to normal.

Unfortunately, a person cannot control the occurrence of PTSD. This condition can occur every time you face danger.

The good news is that the nervous system can be brought back to its normal state. Basically, you need to find techniques to relax the nervous system, heal and move on from the trauma.

Main Signs and Symptoms of PTSD

PTSD can occur after completely different stressful situations. Meanwhile, there are 4 main symptoms of how to recognize this condition:

  1. Memories, nightmares, or reliving a traumatic event.
  2. Loss of interest in life or avoidance of anything reminiscent of the trauma.
  3. Hypersensitivity, uncontrolled outbursts of anger, irritability, or increased feelings of nervousness.
  4. Self-blame and negative thoughts that trigger depression or feelings of hopelessness.

PTSD Self-Healing Tip # 1: Get Rid of Helplessness Feeling

Try to regain your inner strength by helping others. Experts recommend:

  • Devote more time to loved ones
  • Donate blood
  • Donate funds to a charitable organization
  • Help those in need

A series of positive actions aimed at helping others can help cope with feelings of helplessness, which is one of the main symptoms of PTSD.

Tip # 2: Do More Exercises

Exercises are a powerful trigger that helps your nervous system to restart and reach a point of relaxation. Basically, you need to find a way out of stress, which immobilizes you mentally and physically.

Practice rhythmic exercises that involve your arms and legs. This can be:

  • Active walking
  • Run
  • Swimming
  • Dancing

Don’t focus on negative thoughts, and try to focus on the sensations of your body. Try to feel the tips of your toes touching the ground as you walk, or listen to the rhythm of your breathing.

Camping is an equally effective way to get rid of PTSD. Pursuing outdoor activities, including kayaking, rafting, or biking, are very effective ways to get rid of PTSD and return to a fulfilling life.

Tip # 3: Seek Professional Support

PTSD can make you feel lonely and disconnected from others. You may be tempted to give up communication with other people and even loved ones. Finding and hiring professionals to help restore mental health is also an effective way to eliminate PTSD symptoms.

Effective Exercises for Seniors + What to Avoid

Proper physical exercises and a balanced diet are among the main components of a healthy lifestyle for people of all ages.

As we age, our needs for healthy food and regular exercise gradually change. Still, a growing body of research indicates that regular exercise is vital for older adults. An active lifestyle can positively influence not only the maintenance but also the restoration of health.

This article is devoted to the National Senior Health Fitness Day. Today, you’ll learn which exercises you can advise your patients and which activities can be dangerous for an older adult’s health.

Exercise Ball

Recently, this mild form of exercise has been gaining more and more popularity among the older generation. Correct execution of the exercise can improve muscle strength, greater mobility, balance, and flexibility. The exercise is relatively simple to complete. Unlike traditional forms of yoga, this exercise provides light stress on muscles and joints.

Some sources claim that the exercise ball or chair yoga has a positive effect on the mental health of older people. Also, seniors who do this exercise regularly boast better sleep quality and inner lightness throughout.

Training with Resistance Bands

Resistance bands or expanders are elastic rubber bands  that can positively affect various muscle groups during the corresponding exercises.

Training with an expander is convenient and one of the simplest forms of exercise that are especially popular with the elderly. Moreover, these exercises can be performed both indoors and outdoors. They are perfect for improving posture as well as increasing muscle and joint mobility.

Walking

With the onset of May, many of us start taking evening walks. Walking is one of the minor stressful types of exercise available for people of all ages.

Sometimes walking is more difficult for an older person due to complications with a musculoskeletal medication. However, if your patient’s health allows some short walks, be sure to include this exercise in your daily tasks.

Daily walking benefits include strengthening muscle groups, reducing the risk of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. It is also a great way to have a good time with your patient outdoors.

Exercise That Is Harmful to Elderly People

Not every exercise is suitable for seniors. It makes no sense to apply the most popular training programs that are suitable for young people.

Caregivers should understand that an older adult’s body may experience increased stress even with the simplest exercises designed to strengthen the muscles of the core, help gain or lose weight.

Here are some exercises that are not suitable for your patient:

  • Bench press
  • Leg press
  • Long-distance running
  • Deadlift
  • High-intensity training
  • Power clean

Remember that even a minimal intake of daily exercise can be effective in improving your patient’s health. However, before recommending any activity, be sure to check with family members or a healthcare provider for possible restrictions.

For More information on how you can keep you and your senior healthy and in shape, contact us today for more tips.

5 Experts’ Recommendations on Caring for Patients with Arthritis

If your patient is suffering from arthritis, it certainly does not hurt you to know a few suggestions from medical professionals’ experience of providing proper care.

Arthritis has a detrimental effect on the musculoskeletal system and can become an insurmountable obstacle, even with fine motor skills. Keep in mind that your main task is to help the elderly person remain independent and reduce internal tension due to a complex physical condition.

 Understand Senior’s Condition

Try to learn more about the type of arthritis and other features of the condition to better understand your patient. For example, a person may suffer from rheumatoid arthritis. This adversely affects the movement of the arms and upper limbs of the body. You may need to help with even minor tasks such as taking medication or opening a bottle of juice.

Try to Maintain a Conversation More Often

Don’t focus on talking about arthritis or a patient’s severe condition. Try to distract an older person with an informative story from your life. Nothing prevents you from learning exciting facts from the patient’s life or asking advice on an important issue.

Feel free to share your feelings. In this way, you provide care and attention to a person who is in dire need of emotional support.

 Don’t Be Too Persistent

Some arthritic patients struggle to prove their independence and refuse the help of their caregivers. You may find that helping with walking or other tasks would be appropriate. However, this is not always the case.

Therefore, try to find out what tasks an elderly person can solve independently and remain functional and independent, and where your help will be indispensable.

Help Control Medication

In some cases, arthritis treatment involves the systematic administration of medication. If your patient has difficulty adhering to the dosage or timing of medication, then the medication reminders are on you. Remember that experienced caregivers always keep track of the patient’s medication and follow a precise schedule.

Use Effective Exercise Complex

Some exercises are great for people with arthritis. Smooth movements not only help lubricate joints but can also strengthen various muscle groups. This is an excellent opportunity to improve the functionality of an elderly person with arthritis.

Finally, remember that there are times when your care and help are genuinely irreplaceable and times when seniors want to act on their own. Be flexible in your daily home care and provide emotional support for your patients.