Battling Infertility with Hope

Caring For Your Elderly Parents: Exploring Senior Care Options

Are your elderly parents struggling to care for themselves on a daily basis? If so, it may be time to start considering the senior care options that are available to help ensure your parents get the help they need throughout their golden years. Below you will learn more about each of these options so that you can choose the senior care services that are best suited to your parent’s specific needs.

Home Health Care Services

Do your parents struggle to complete household tasks, but still maintain a great deal of independence? If so, home health care services may be the right senior care option for them. These in-home services provide seniors with assistance with basic daily tasks such as the following:

  • bathing
  • dressing
  • cooking
  • cleaning

These services can also be used to help with mobility issues around the house and provide your parents with daily medication reminders to aid them in maintaining their good health.

While home health care services can provide a number of valuable benefits, these services are not designed to take the place of regular medical care. Consequently, these services may not be a good fit for individuals with serious medical conditions or who are recovering from a major illness or injury.

Nursing Homes

Do your parents require round the clock medical care, but do not wish to remain in the hospital for an extended period of time? If so, a nursing home will likely be the most appropriate setting for them. This is because nursing homes are staffed with medical professionals, such as registered nurses and physicians in order to provide their residents with the absolute highest level of care.

Since the primary focus of a nursing home is treating the medical ailments of their residents, the individuals who reside in these homes will not have the benefit of a private residence. Instead, they will simply be provided with a private room within the facility. Visiting hours may also be restricted in these facilities. Consequently, a nursing home will not be the right placement for seniors who still wish to maintain a great deal of independence.

Independent Living Communities

Do your parents require more assistance than home health care services can provide, but are not quite ready to move to a nursing home? If so, an independent living community may be able to provide the perfect balance of services and freedom.

Independent living facilities provide residents with their own private residence so that they can enjoy the privacy and independence that they deserve. However, these communities also offer a variety of onsite services, such as transportation assistance, in-home care, and urgent care clinics. These communities will also include a clubhouse or community center where residents can meet to enjoy a variety of social events.

While residents of an independent living community will have easier access to medical care, round-the-clock care is not typically provided. Consequently, these communities will not be suitable for seniors with serious medical conditions. Some seniors may also take issue with the fact that these communities require them to leave their long-time home.

For more information, contact a business such as ComForcare – North Middlesex.

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Problems With Hammertoe? Try These Home Treatments

The most suitable type of hammertoe correction for your condition depends on whether your toe is still flexible or not. In the early stages, your toe may develop calluses and be painful, but the joint is still able to move, so you can straighten out your toe. As the damage progresses, the joint eventually becomes stiff, and stays in a bent position. Then the only treatment that works is surgery. That’s why you don’t want to ignore your symptoms. Here are some of the treatments you can try while you’re still in the early stages.

Change Your Footwear

Choose footwear that gives your toes plenty of room inside. There should be no pressure on your toes at all. Choose shoes that are a little longer and wider than your feet, so you can walk comfortably without rubbing. Shoes with a wide toe usually work best. The heel height is important, too. Avoid high heels because these force pressure onto your toes. Sandals are a good option as long as they provide good arch support. Flat sandals, like flip-flops, can lead to other foot problems if you wear them too often, because they do not support your arch.

Try An Orthotic Device

You can buy shoe inserts at your drugstore, or you can go to a podiatrist for help in choosing the best kind. If you buy them at the store, be sure the label says the insert is for hammertoe correction. There are many different orthotic devices you can buy, and you want one that separates and stabilizes your toes with cushions or straps. You can even buy devices you wear like socks, so they’ll stay on when you take your shoes off. If you wear the proper device for an extended period of time, your toes may gradually go back into alignment, especially if you do toe exercises, too. You may also want to buy corn pads to wear as cushioning on your joints and callouses if they are tender.

Do Toe Exercises

Your condition might be caused by wearing shoes that don’t fit well. This is especially true if you are fond of wearing high heels. However, there could be other causes, too. One thing that causes your toe to turn at an angle is problems with the muscles. If the muscles on one side are stronger, they draw the toe to one side. Toe exercises may be helpful. Your podiatrist will explain the best ones to do. Some simple ones you can try are picking up a towel with your toes, walking on your tiptoes, and toe stretches.

These home treatments may be able to stop the progression of your condition. However, if you get to the point that pain interferes with your life, then it may be time to talk to your podiatrist like the one at about having surgery to straighten out your toe.

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Suspect Your Child Is On Drugs? What You Can Do

If your suspect your child is doing drugs, there are things you can do to help them. If your child’s grades are dropping, they are losing weight, and sleeping more than they normally do, these are some red flags that they are doing drugs. Below are some changes you can make around your home, such as locking up the liquor cabinet, preventing them from sneaking out, and checking their car for drug residue.

Start With Your Own Home

Your child may start getting their alcohol and/or prescription medication at home. If you have a liquor cabinet, remove some of the bottles and check them. One trick that children will do is to empty out the bottles, and then fill them back up with water. This works well for bottles that are tinted, or for clear liquor, such as vodka.

The same thing goes for your prescription medication, especially if you do not take it on a regular basis.  If you suspect your child is doing drugs, lock these up also. You should also check how many pills you have in each bottle, so you can check if there is any missing.

An easy way to keep these things secure is to purchase security sensors. You can find these at most electronic stores. Place a security sensor on your liquor cabinet and medication cabinet doors. If your child opens the cabinet or door, an alarm will send, and you will be notified via text or email.

Prevent Sneaking Out

If your child is doing drugs, they may try to sneak out at night. The best way to prevent this is to install an alarm system. If you do not want to do this, however, you can place a bell above the front and back door. When your child tries to open one of these doors the bell will sound. Make sure the bells are high enough and secure so your child could not easily take them down without making a lot of noise.  Nail down the window screens so your child cannot easily pop them off.

Check the Car

If your child has their own car, make sure you check it randomly, and always after a weekend, such as on a Sunday.

Do your research so you know what to look for, such as what a joint and roach look like. The roach is the end of a joint. Think of a cigarette after it has been smoked and the butt is left behind. Look for small seeds or green leaf like particles on the seats and floorboards.

Look for white powdery residue on the dashboard, mirrors, CDs and/or CD cases, and floorboards that they may be using to do drugs off of, such as snorting cocaine.

There are drug testing kits you can purchase to give your child a drug test at home. Talk to your doctor about your child’s substance abuse, and they can tell you where you can purchase drug testing kits..

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How Can I Talk To My Parents About Assisted Living?

Have you recently noticed that your parents aren’t really able to care for themselves anymore? Has their home simply gotten too big for them to handle on their own? It may be time to begin the discussion about moving into assisted living. While many people associate assisted living with moving into a nursing home, residents can actually live rather independent lives while receiving the little assistance that they do need. But how do you have the conversation about giving up their home and moving into assisted living?

Start the Conversation Early

If you know that your parents are still relatively independent, start the conversation before the situation gets out of hand. You want to give them time to think over their options before you find yourself in an emergency situation. Think about the things that they need help with. Can they still cook, manage their medications and get around independently, but the upkeep of the home is a problem? Or maybe they have problems with their bladder and need assistance with toileting. Either way, you want to know what you will be discussing with them and what type of assisted living options you will be looking for.

Research and Preparation

While you want to let your parents guide the decision making process, it is important that you are prepared when the conversation starts. Have some information regarding what assisted living consists of and how it is not a nursing home. You can also stop by different communities such as Twin Oaks Estate and pick up brochures to have on hand while discussing different options with your parents. Look at the different amenities and services provided by each community, and consider what your parents will deem important.

Things Not to Do

It can be easy to try to overtake the process of moving to assisted living in order to make things easier on your parents. But there are some things that you should just step back and allow them to do. Make sure that after you voice your concerns, you allow your parents to make the final decision. Also make sure that you offer to help with the packing, moving and selling of their home, but allow them to take the lead. Try not to make any negative comments about the move or the community they have chosen.

Having a conversation with a loved one where you’re trying to point out that they can’t live on their own anymore is never easy. But you can help the conversation go a little more smoothly by taking some time in advance to prepare. Once the conversation is over, give your parents some time to think, and be there when they need someone to lean on. Doing so can help strengthen your relationship and make the entire transition a better experience.

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5 Big Questions To Ask Your Obstetrics Doctor

Wondering how to ask an OB/GYN about the process for your pregnancy? Here are some fundamental questions that will help you get answers you need to anticipate what’s going to happen, from your first consultation to the final delivery.

Is This A High-Risk Pregnancy?

Numbers from the National Institutes of Health show that many women are identified with high-risk pregnancies each year; for example, 6-8% for hypertension and 2-10% for gestational diabetes. Obstetrics doctors need to let clients know from the very beginning whether they have any high-risk characteristics that will place them in this protected pregnancy status. Doctors do certain things for high-risk pregnancies, including more tests and more safeguards for the birthing process.

How Many Ultrasound Appointments Will I Get?

It’s a good idea to know about the pregnancy monitoring process, for example, how many times the doctor will do an ultrasound to see what the baby is doing inside. This resource from BabyCenter shows that many women get between 2 and 4 ultrasounds during a pregnancy, but this is a rough number and doctors may do more depending on what they see in initial tests.

When Do I Need to Give the Hospital the Birth Plan, and in What Format?

The birth plan is extremely important for expectant mothers. It documents what they need to feel supported in their pregnancy and delivery. Ask the OB/GYN when the hospital needs to have this plan in hand, and what format will be the most useful for labor and delivery nurses and other medical professionals who will be involved in the process.

Who’s My Backup Doctor?

Many of those women going into consultation about pregnancy start to feel comfortable with their regular obstetrics doctor, and they don’t really want anyone else to attend the pregnancy in his or her place. However, doctors are human too, and during weekends, holidays and other times, that preferred doctor may not be available.

Yes, the “backup doctor” situation happens in many of your pregnancies. Just like Katherine Heigl in Knocked Up, a significant number of new mothers spend the hours before delivery begging for their good old trusted obstetrics doctor to arrive. Having a backup plan will help you feel safer and more confident that you can accomplish the delivery with or without your regular OB/GYN.

Can I Take a Tour of the Labor Facility?

You can ask all kinds of questions about a labor and delivery department, but the best way to get all of those questions answered at once is to take a short tour and really get a feel for how things operate inside a labor ward. You’ll see how the rooms look, how medical staff interact, and what your general environment will be when you go in to actually give birth.

Expectant mothers can benefit from using all of these stock questions when talking to their obstetrician, such as Women’s Healthcare Associates LLC, in the initial hours of consultation.

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Breast Reconstruction Options

Following a mastectomy, one concern for many women is reconstructing the breast. There are several surgical options available to you for breast reconstruction, including using your own tissue flap. 

Implant Procedure

One possibility for breast reconstruction is undergoing an implant procedure. There are different choices for an implant, but the most commonly used is  a saline-filled implant. The implant consists of a shell which is full of saline solution, or salt water. 

Silicone gel is also an option. The gel has been in a concern in a past because there was fear that they could lead to immune system problems if a leak occurred. Newer silicone gels have not been linked to immune system problems and were even re-approved for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Some clinical trials that are experimenting with different types of substances within the implants are being conducted. If you are interested in finding a trial, talk to your surgeon. He or she can explain the possible results and risks associated with the experimental implants. 

If you are considering implants, there are some considerations to make before the procedure. Implants are not considered to be a lifetime solution. The implants might need replacement later. You will also need a MRI  every few years to check the condition of the implants. 

Tissue Flap Procedure

Another option for breast reconstruction is using tissue from other areas of your body to reconstruct the breast. The tissue is usually taken from the back, buttocks, tummy area, and thighs. 

An upside to the procedure is the surgeon does not have to rely on a foreign material to reconstruct your breast. However, the tissue removal can result in scars from the donor site. This is in addition to the scars that can occur on the reconstructed breast. The scars can fade though and not be as visible. 

The newly reconstructed breast will rely on good blood circulation to help it heal. It is because of this, certain women are not able to choose the tissue flap procedure. Potential blood circulation problems, such as having diabetes or vascular disease, can exclude you from being eligible for the procedure. 

Your surgeon, such as someone from Sam W Huddleston IV, MD, can assess your health and help you make the best decision for reconstructing your breast. He or she can even help you decide the best time to undergo the procedure. Ultimately, the decision of when to have it is up to you. 

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5 Ways To Keep Your Smile White

One of the most appealing physical attributes a person can have is a white smile. A bright and white smile looks gorgeous and can help you make a good impression with other people. If you maintain good oral hygiene and avoid certain foods, you can achieve a whiter smile. Here are five ways to keep your smile white.

Include Crunchy Foods in Your Diet

A simple way to maintain a white smile is to include crunchy foods, such as apples, pears, celery and carrots, in your diet. These foods are pretty abrasive, so they can scrub stains right off your teeth. Crunchy foods also increase saliva production, which help keep stains off your teeth.

Replace Your Toothbrush

When was the last time you replaced your toothbrush? If it has been more than three months, you definitely need to buy a new toothbrush. After a few months, the bristles can wear out and will not clean your teeth as thoroughly. 

Avoid Dark Foods and Beverages

If you want to keep your teeth as white as possible, you should try to avoid dark foods and beverages as much as possible. Foods and beverages with very dark pigments can leave deep stains on your teeth. Some dark foods and beverages you should limit include blueberries, curry sauce, coffee and red wine. If you do consume something dark, at least rinse your mouth out with water afterward. 

Add Baking Soda to Your Toothpaste

Another easy way you can maintain a white smile is to add baking soda to your toothpaste. Baking soda is abrasive and will help remove stains from your pearly whites. Just add a pinch of it to your toothpaste and brush your teeth like you always do.

Brush Your Tongue

If you are like most people, you probably do not even think about brushing your tongue. However, a lot of plaque and bacteria can build up on your tongue, which can eventually discolor your teeth. Use your toothbrush to brush your tongue in long strokes. It takes less than a minute and can help keep stains off your teeth.

Keeping your smile white and attractive does not have to be difficult. If you follow these helpful tips, you will have a smile that everyone will be envious of. However, if your teeth are still not as white as you want them to be, talk to your cosmetic dentist about professional whitening treatments. For more information, talk to someone like David Jackson, DDS.

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