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How To Prevent Falls In The Elderly

Over the years, our bodies become more prone to injuries and accidents. As we age, we lose some sense of coordination, flexibility and balance. Although we all hope to maintain our young physiques forever, our bodies will start to show signs of wear, making us more susceptible to physical accidents.

Our environment may prove to be a hazard if our vision becomes blurred and our bodies fail to perform as we could in the past. Additionally, more than 80% of seniors suffer from one or more chronic conditions, which — combined with prescriptions and medications — could lead to falls and injury.

Not only do falls present an immediate health concern to the elderly, but they also increase the risk of long-term consequences. Just one incident could spark a chain reaction of complications, which often affect more than just the injured party. Caregivers and family are often responsible for the care and healing of elderly victims, which could put jobs and obligations on hold.

Because of the ripples that a fall may cause, it’s important to equip our elderly loved ones with senior fall prevention measures and emergency plans to avoid catastrophe. If you want to learn how to prevent falls in the elderly, consider these tips.

Create a Fall-Proof Home Environment

More than 50% of injury-related hospitalizations are for people older than 65. Furthermore, the average hospital visit due to a fall can last up to 15 days, depending on the injury. The first step to avoiding an emergency room visit is to reflect on the condition of the home.

Here are some ways to help your loved one maintain independence while promoting fall prevention in the elderly:

  1. Clear clutter. Tripping over an object could cause a senior to fall on furniture or tip furniture over, which could make a fall even more devastating. Make sure the floors are clear and clutter is gone.
  2. Reinforce handrails. Make sure the screws are tightened on any wiggly rails in and outside the house. Consider installing a handrail on both sides of any stairway.
  3. Prioritize the bathroom. The moisture and wet surfaces in the bathroom are dangerous for seniors who don’t have the balance or reaction times needed to keep from falling. Consider installing walk-in tubs or showers, taller toilets, or other senior-friendly accessories.
  4. Rethink high shelves. Reaching for something on the top shelf can cause someone to lose his or her balance. Put items on a lower shelf or invest in a quality grabber tool.
  5. Check the lighting. A dim or ill-lighted room could impact a person’s ability to see obstacles. Install accessible lamps or move light switches so they’re within reach.
  6. Secure the flooring. Loose floorboards, slippery rugs or slick surfaces increase the chances of a fall. Secure any unstable boards or loose carpet corners.

More Ways to Ensure Safety

Even with a home atmosphere optimized for safety, the risk or trauma of falling might still be present. For someone who has experienced a prior fall, it may lead to dependence on others, confusion, immobilization, social isolation or an unwillingness to participate in daily activities. Falling once often doubles the likelihood of falling again.

Here are more ways to promote safety for yourself or a loved one:

  • Wear appropriate footwear. Slippers, high heels and socks might not be a sensible choice. Replace these with shoes that have a sturdy, nonslip sole.
  • Promote physical activity. By implementing regular activity, such as stretching, walking or light weightlifting, you can help improve balance, coordination and strength.
  • Get used to mobility aids. A wheelchair, walker, cane or motorized scooter could be a solution to many balance-related issues, depending on the person’s needs.
  • Visit the doctor regularly. Eye exams and regular check-ups are important to make sure chronic illnesses are managed and health is monitored professionally.

Although many seniors want to maintain their independence and live a normal life, there are benefits to having a little help. A home care specialist would allow a senior to remain comfortable in his or her home and ensure he or she has adequate care.

WellSprings Home Care’s home services include live-in assistance, overnight care and specialized support for veterans or those suffering from dementia. Contact us for a consultation today to learn more.

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What Is The Difference Between Palliative Care And Hospice?

If you or a loved one is facing a serious illness, finding proper support is crucial to maintain quality of life. Not only do you want relief from pain, but there are also a host of emotional, physical and spiritual needs that may need to be addressed as well.

This is when caregiving options such as palliative care and hospice come into play. Both help the patient deal with ramifications of a serious illness — but what is the difference between palliative care and hospice? What does palliative care involve that hospice doesn’t, and vice versa? How do you know which type of care to retain?

To help answer these questions, here’s a look at these important types of care.

Is Palliative Care the Same as Hospice?

The simple answer is no, but they do have a lot in common. The main difference between palliative care and hospice is timing. While they both emphasize improving the patient’s quality of life, the growing field of palliative care caters to individuals at any point in their diagnosis, easing the burdens associated with an illness. Palliative care patients may still have a long life-expectancy but need more dedicated care for a period of time. For example, a person receiving palliative care could need help with insomnia or education on lifestyle changes.

Hospice, on the other hand, only comes into play specifically when a patient is at the end of life, no longer responding to medical treatment and no longer pursuing curative help. This is why hospice is also referred to as end-of-life care.

Why Would a Patient Choose Either Type?

Any patient facing a serious illness and looking for complex symptom relief and/or reduced stress can benefit from compassionate comfort care.

What Are the Goals of These Types of Care?

In palliative care, the goal is to relieve symptoms and stress as a person faces a serious illness; it can take place at diagnosis, during treatment, alongside recovery or at the end of life. In hospice care, the goal is to provide better quality of life as a person is dying.

Who Is Eligible for Hospice or Palliative Care?

To be eligible for hospice, a patient typically needs to have been diagnosed by two physicians as having less than six months to live; it is paid by Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance. Palliative care is more flexible and may be started at any stage of an illness, at the discretion of the patient and physician; it is typically paid for by insurance or through self-pay, depending on various factors.

Whether because of illness or injury, there are many times when receiving additional support from trained caregivers can be life changing. If you or someone you love is in need of senior home care services, Wellsprings Home Care offers compassionate, high-quality, non-medical support to individuals in Chester County, Montgomery County and Delaware County. From mobility assistance to live-in and overnight care, we provide aid to help patients stay in their homes, where they can be as comfortable as possible.

Reach out to us anytime, and we can come up with a plan to best fit your needs. Schedule a free consultation anytime.

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How Much Does Live-In Care Cost?

Are you, or someone you love, considering hiring someone to provide live-in care? The decision to do so is not made lightly, but many seniors would prefer to live at home, even if they have limitations. These include vision problems or cognitive issues which prevent them from living safely at home without assistance. Here’s a closer look at what you can expect to spend on live-in care for you or someone you love.

There are many advantages to live-in care. Having a live-in caregiver means that you or the person in question gets to stay in familiar surroundings and sacrifices less freedom than if he or she moved to a care facility. A live-in caretaker provides companionship, helps with day-to-day chores, assists with caring for the person’s health and personal hygiene, and helps the person maintain greater independence than if he or she had to move to a care facility. However, how much is home care? Can you afford it? You may be surprised by the costs of caring for a loved one at home versus receiving residential care in a facility. Read on to learn more about how much does live-in care cost.

How Much Does Private Home Care Cost?

How much you’ll spend on care for a senior at home depends on a variety of factors. This includes the type of services needed, how much time is spent providing those services and what types of supplies are necessary to provide those services. The average amount you’ll spend also depends on the state where you live but recent stats suggest that you can expect to spend about $4,000/month. Some states average a higher per-hour rate for in-home care, including North Dakota and Alaska while states such as Louisiana, West Virginia and Alabama average lower per-hour rates.

Paying for Live-In Home Care

Once you’ve answered the question of how much is home health care, the question of how to pay for it arises. People use different methods to pay for in-home care. Many families pay for the service themselves; you may also have health insurance or managed care plans that contribute to the cost. In some cases, third-party payors, such as Medicare, Medicaid or the Veteran’s Administration, may help cover the expense.

If you’re looking for in-home care for yourself or a loved one, WellSprings Home Care provides compassionate caregiving to people who need it. For a free consultation, contact us today.

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What Are The Four Levels Of Hospice Care?

Hospice, also known as comfort care, concentrates on managing pain levels for a terminally ill patient. For those who’ve been diagnosed as having six months or less to live, hospice focuses on providing as much quality of life as possible for the time left. To qualify for hospice care, the patient needs a doctor to officially diagnose the severity of the condition. From there, according to Medicare, there are four available levels of hospice care.

What are the four levels of hospice care and how do they apply to a patient? Here’s a look at the basics:

  1. At-Home/Routine Care: The most basic kind of hospice care, routine home care can involve anything from skilled nursing service to various kinds of therapy. Typical services include pain management, symptom management, counseling for the patient and family, nutritional services, help with daily tasks, and therapies. This service is for homebound individuals with Medicare part A and B whose doctor has ordered the needed services.
  2. Continuous Home Care: In situations where a patient needs more intense support, continuous home care offers a higher level of caregiving, for at least eight hours each day. This may be in response to a medical crisis or because a patient requires more involved management. In continuous home care, the hospice personnel focus on managing acute medical symptoms. A patient might be dealing with severe vomiting, shortness of breath, panic attacks or some other unrelieved pain. Whatever the case, at least half the care in this type of hospice must be provided by a trained nurse.
  3. General Inpatient Care: Sometimes a patient’s needs cannot be adequately managed in the home environment. In these situations, various inpatient facilities provide a setting for continuous hospice care, from a nursing home to an inpatient unit of a hospital to a facility owned and operated by a hospice company. Here, patients can have round-the-clock care from nurses to provide medication, treatment and support as needed. Typically, the goal is to return the patient to enough stability to go home, if possible.
  4. Respite Care: Some patients have family members or other loved ones providing the bulk of their care, but those caregivers need a break for one reason or another. In these situations, respite care can provide an invaluable temporary substitute, for up to five days.

Whether you have a dying loved one who needs more support or you’re a caregiver wanting a respite for a few days, hospice care can make a world of difference. The end-of-life journey is a sacred one, deserving of respectful care and support.

At Wellsprings Home Care, that is exactly what we provide — through respite care and in-home caregiving. Come to us for compassionate, professional, non-medical home care services. To learn more about the different levels of hospice care we are able to provide, schedule a free consultation anytime.

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What is 24 Hour Home Care?

There comes a time when it’s necessary for aging individuals in the Delaware, Chester, and Montgomery County areas to receive more intensive, regular care.

So, when you think your loved ones would benefit from hands-on support, it’s important to choose the compassion of an experienced caregiver.

Luckily, the team of live-in care managers at WellSprings Home Care is here to provide your elderly family members with customized assistance, even in the middle of the night.

With our 24-hour home care program, you’ll be able to relax with the knowledge that your relatives are getting customized, professional care. But what is 24-hour home care and what does it entail? We’re here to help you learn all about our comprehensive program. Let’s get started.

What is 24 Hour Home Care for Seniors?

Let’s begin by first defining what 24-hour home care is. 24-hour home care provides elderly individuals with assistance during the day and night. Usually, this type of care requires two or more caregivers rotating shifts throughout a 24-hour period.

With this approach, the professionals tending to your loved ones will be well-rested and alert. As a result, your senior will have the necessary support to feel safe and secure at any hour of the day or night.

This type of assistance is perfect for those who need around-the-clock supervision. Whether your aging family member is recovering from a recent surgery or suffers from dementia, you and your elders can enjoy the security and confidence of continued, in-home care.

Signs That Your Senior Needs 24 Hour Home Care

To help you determine if your elderly loved one could benefit from 24-hour home care, we’ve outlined a few of the most common indicators. Take a look:

Dementia

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, about 5.8 million Americans aged 65 years and older live with Alzheimer’s in 2020.1 Due to the high rates of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia, it’s essential that seniors suffering from this condition have constant, hands-on care.

If your aging relative shows signs of dementia or has already been diagnosed, 24-hour care is the best option to ensure their safety and well-being.

By opting for a trained professional to oversee your senior, you can trust that they’ll have someone by their side to help them if they awaken in the middle of the night or misplace an important item.

Transportation

As seniors age, it becomes increasingly more important that they have reliable, safe transportation for their activities and errands. 24-hour home care allows seniors to keep up with their social lives without requiring them to drive themselves.

Not only does this give your loved ones the transportation that they need, but it also prevents loneliness associated with being unable to drive.

Depression

The transition into senior life can result in feelings of anxiety and depression in those who live alone and those who live with a spouse. Unfortunately, nursing homes may not provide the type of personalized, intensive care that your loved ones need to feel upbeat.

That’s why 24-hour, at-home care stands as a viable option for your aging family members. With the customized assistance offered by the professionals at WellSprings, they’ll have a team of dedicated caregivers who can adapt to their preferences, schedules, and unique personalities.

Mobility Issues

When the possibility of frequent falls poses a risk to your family members, whether due to a chronic condition or a recent injury, intensive supervision is required. Luckily, the presence of a 24-hour caregiver adds comfort to uncertain situations in which you may not be around to monitor your loved one’s activities.

Thanks to our skilled, in-home caregivers, your aging parents won’t run the risk of falling or otherwise injuring themselves while walking through their homes at night. Plus, each of our certified direct care workers takes specialized courses in fall prevention.

That means that, should your elder need assistance in getting around, our care aides are there to prevent sudden accidents. As a result, your relatives’ well-being will be preserved and you can feel confident and reassured that they’re receiving the high-quality care that they truly deserve.

Find out more about some of the signs that your loved one needs home care by checking out our blog post.

How to Choose 24 Hour Home Care for Your Senior

Now that you’re more familiar with some of the most common signs that indicate that your seniors could benefit from 24-hour home care, it’s time to learn about how to choose the right caregiver.

First and foremost, you’ll want to find a senior home care agency that offers the option for 24-hour care. Fortunately, the team at WellSprings provides extensive experience in matching elderly individuals with caregivers who fit their needs. That way, you’ll be sure that your aging family members have the right type of support at any hour of the day or night.

From there, you and your senior should spend some time interviewing several 24-hour caregivers so that you can choose a few who can handle whatever conditions that your elder may be dealing with. In addition, you’ll want to make it a priority to give potential care aides a list of the activities that your loved one might need assistance with throughout the day, such as:

  • Meal preparation
  • Medication reminders
  • Grooming assistance
  • Grocery shopping
  • Transportation and more

By carefully detailing the tasks that will be required during their shift, you’ll ensure that the 24-hour caregivers that you ultimately choose will know exactly what to expect.

During your interview with potential care managers, remember to ask them questions about their experience and certifications. For instance, our caregivers are all certified direct care workers, and they all receive our in-house competency testing.

On top of that, some of our home care managers undergo specialized courses and training in other areas of senior care. Ultimately, this helps you have peace-of-mind that your family members are in good hands.

Once you’ve finalized your list of 24-hour home care candidates, all you have to do is sit down with your senior and select the individuals that best fit your requirements. Then, you can set up a shift schedule so that your aging parent always has a highly trained professional by their side.

Learn more about the steps for choosing the best 24-hour home care by reading our informative guide today!

Find Out More About Our 24 Hour Home Care Program Today!

At WellSprings Home Care, we believe that every senior in the Delaware, Chester, and Montgomery County areas is entitled to high-quality care within their own homes. By choosing our team, you’ll enjoy the peace-of-mind that comes with giving your aging loved the 24-hour home supervision that they deserve.

To learn more about our 24-hour home care program or to get the process started, give our team a call at (610) 463-0880 or schedule your free consultation today!

  1. https://www.alz.org/alzheimers-dementia/facts-figures#:~:text=An%20estimated%205.8%20million%20Americans,Americans%20with%20Alzheimer’s%20are%20women
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Hospital Recovery Care for Seniors

Recovery care

If your loved one has had a recent hospital stay, our caregivers at WellSprings Home Care can help! From live-in assistance, to respite care from time to time, we provide plenty of services to seniors in the Delaware County, Chester County, and Montgomery County areas.

After your loved one has spent time in the hospital, perhaps for an injury or surgery, he or she will more than likely want to recover in their comfort of his or her own home, which is where we can step in. Read on to find out more!

Home Care Services

Hospital recovery can require extra care and attention, and having an in-home caregiver may be just the right solution. Our caregivers provide services such as:

• Live-in care, for those who need around-the-clock assistance
• Personal care, such as bathing and dressing, along with dental care
• Respite care, for those times when you might need a break for a few days
• Mobility assistance, especially if your loved one is recovering from a recent fall, or is required to walk around as part of rehabilitation
• Medication reminders and light housework, such as laundry, meal preparation, or some errands

Services like these can allow you to rest assured that your loved one is receiving the right care he or she needs after time spent in the hospital. Our team at WellSprings Home Care provides extensive training for our caregivers in all of these areas, so that your loved one is receiving only the highest quality of care.

Finding the Right Caregiver

Finding the right caregiver starts even before your loved one is discharged. You’ll want to check with his or her doctor to first see if home care is the right option. If so, you’ll then need to discuss which services your loved one will need from a caregiver – most importantly, if he or she will need medical or non-medical services.

Then, you’ll want to find an agency that provides such services. Be sure to ask the agencies a number of questions, such as:

• If they’re licensed by the state
• If they’re certified by Medicare or Medicaid
• What type of training their caregivers undergo
• How they conduct their hiring process
• If they keep up with employee screenings
• If they can provide references upon request

Asking these questions ahead of time can eliminate problems in the future, and you can have peace of mind that your loved one is receiving compassionate, proper care.

How to Get Started with Senior Hospital Recovery Care

If you think that in-home care may be the right solution for your loved one’s recovery from a hospital stay, our team at WellSprings Home Care Services can help. When you contact us, we’ll assess your loved one’s needs, and match him or her with the right caregiver.

You’ll then have the opportunity to interview this caregiver in person, and see for yourself if you think he or she is a good fit. Then, you can decide on which services you think your loved one will benefit from together.

To get started, simply give us a call at (610) 463-0880 today!

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