home-health-care-keeping-seniors-healthy-during-flu-season-2020

Keeping Seniors Healthy During Flu Season 2020

While we are all getting ready for and anticipating the spring season, this is also the time of year for something not so fun. Yes, it’s flu season 2020! During flu season, it is especially important for your senior loved one to be careful and take some extra measures to avoid getting sick. Seniors are much more likely to contract the flu already, thanks to their weaker immune systems. But by following our advice below, your senior can reduce the chances of getting the flu, and at the very least reduce the length and severity of the illness. 

Get Plenty of Exercise

What you really want to do is boost your senior’s immune system as much as possible! Exercise can help them get the job done. Regular exercise reduces the likelihood of your senior catching the cold or flu by a third. Exercise does not have to be strenuous; going for a walk once a day will work.

Wash Your Hands

Keep germs away from your senior by reminding them to wash their hands often with any regular soap! They should be rubbing their hands together vigorously for at least 20 seconds and scrubbing ALL over the hands – in between fingers, backs of the hands, the wrists, and under the fingernails. If they don’t have access to soap and water as much as they’d like, have them carry hand sanitizer with them, too.

Get the Flu Vaccine

To reduce your senior’s likelihood of catching the flu, encourage them to get the flu vaccine. If they do happen to contract the flu, the vaccine will help to reduce the duration and severity of the illness. It is recommended to get the flu vaccine in October or November, but experts say that any time of the year is better than not getting it at all.

Keep Your Environment Clean

As important as keeping seniors’ hands clean is keeping their home clean! Particularly the kitchen and bathroom where you’ll find the most germs. Be sure they’re using a good disinfectant and are paying special attention to cleaning doorknobs, light switches, and countertops! 

Drink Your Fluids

Be sure your senior is drinking their fluids! When they’re taking in water or hot tea, they’re actually keeping their nasal passages moist. This traps germs and prevents them from spreading!

To learn more about how to keep your senior healthy during flu season, or to hear more about our senior care services, call us here at Home Care Assistance and schedule your consultation!

the-benefits-of-reducing-caffeine

Top 3 Benefits of Reducing Caffeine In Seniors

If you had to give up caffeine right now, could you do it? If you think you’d struggle, we understand. Your senior loved one who’s been drinking coffee for years probably feels the same way! But reducing your senior’s caffeine intake will provide them with numerous worthwhile benefits! Below, we’ve listed a few of those benefits along with some tips that can help them kick the habit…or at least cut down.

Decrease Side Effects

Did you know? Seniors are much more sensitive to caffeine, all thanks to the aging process! Typical symptoms of too much caffeine include the jitters, feelings of anxiety, a racing heart, headaches, or feeling out of breath. For your senior, those symptoms are amplified and can be harmful to their bodies if they consume too much caffeine. It’s better to play it on the safe side and reduce their amount of caffeine to lessen or prevent these symptoms.

Less Stress

If your senior seems to stress out a lot, the solution could be very simple: less caffeine! The more caffeine we drink, the more our bodies produce and release cortisol, AKA the stress hormone. Cortisol is responsible for increasing a number of things, including heart rate, blood pressure, blood glucose, muscle tension, and respiration.

Tips to Cut the Caffeine

  • For seniors who suffer from sleep disorders, or who just don’t get enough rest, try cutting off their caffeine intake at least 4 hours prior to their bedtime. They can still consume caffeine, it will just be during they day so it doesn’t interrupt their sleep.
  • Help your senior learn to not rely on coffee or tea to stay hydrated! Instead, introduce them to healthier, non-caffeinated alternatives like fruit-infused water. It tastes great and is just as satisfying, without the caffeine!
    • Bonus! If your senior really doesn’t want anything besides their coffee, you can dilute the caffeine and increase hydration by watering it down a little bit. 

For further guidance on keeping your senior’s diet healthy and balanced, call Home Care Assistance and talk to our experts! We are here to help you with all of your senior care needs.