Beehive Blog

February - American Heart Month!

Posted by paula worley on Monday, February 02, 2015

During the month of February, Americans see the human heart as the symbol of love. February is also American Heart Month, a time to not only show your loved ones some love, but to show yourself some love too!

Cardiovascular disease, including heart disease, stroke, and high blood pressure, is the number 1 killer of women and men in the United States. Try out these strategies for better heart health. You'll be surprised how many of them can become lifelong habits!

  • Monitor your blood pressure.
  • Get your cholesterol checked.
  • Eat a healthy diet and Exercise.
  • Take your medicine.
  • Limit alcohol use.
  • Manage your diabetes.

This is a great time to celebrate your heart and recognize how hard it works for you. Show your heart some love with these fun, simple, and healthy tips:

  • Be sweet - Heart healthy treats are filled with natural antioxidants that can help keep your arteries open. We recommend trying blueberries or strawberries.

  • Move to the beat - Any activity that gets you moving — like dancing or walking — can help increase blood circulation, reduce stress, and protect your heart.

  • Do your thing - Activities and hobbies like painting, writing, yoga, and meditation can help slow your heart and breathing rates and lower your blood pressure.

Sources:

http://www.cdc.gov/features/heartmonth/

http://share.kaiserpermanente.org/article/seniors-be-good-to-your-heart-on-valentines-day-and-all-year-long/#sthash.ijXsSy0P.dpuf

Don't Forget Your Flu Shot!

Posted by paula worley on Monday, December 01, 2014

As you age, your immune system weakens. Seniors 65 years and older are at greater risk of serious complications from the flu compared with young, healthy adults. The best way to prevent the flu is with a flu vaccine. We recommend getting a seasonal flu vaccine soon after it becomes available in your community. Seniors 65 years and older have two flu shots available to choose from - a regular dose flu vaccine and a newer flu vaccine designed for people 65 and older with a higher dose. The high dose vaccine is associated with a stronger immune response to vaccination (higher antibody production). Always consult with your doctor before choosing a flu vaccine.

Ways to help prevent getting the flu:

  • Get your flu shot – Get vaccinated every year.  Immunity sets in about two weeks after vaccination.
  • Practice good health habits – including covering coughs, washing hands often, and avoiding people who are sick.
  • Seek medical advice quickly if you develop flu like symptoms.
Flu symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. Some people may also have vomiting and diarrhea. People may be infected with the flu and have respiratory symptoms without a fever.

SLC Locations for non-appointment flu vaccinations:

  • Salt Lake City Public Health Center - 610 South 200 East SLC, UT 84111      # 385.468.4225
  • Ellis R. Ship Public Health Center - 4535 South 5600 West WVC, UT 84121     # 385.468.3700
  • South Main Public Health Center - 3690 South Main Street SLC, UT 84114      # 385.468.4000
  • South East Public Health Center - 9340 South 700 East Sandy, UT 84070      # 385.468.4330
  • Walgreens, Rite Aid, and CVS pharmacies

Thanksgiving with Seniors!

Posted by paula worley on Tuesday, November 11, 2014

         It’s Thanksgiving time again! Many families across the country are preparing themselves for turkey, stuffing, gravy, casseroles, and not to mention the desserts! Every year it’s the same routine that we all know and love. That is until something or someone throws us for a loop. One very common change is the aging of a loved one, who is no longer as independent, lucid, or physically capable of your normal routine.  Thanksgiving can be fun and festive for some, and emotionally and physically challenging for others. Since seniors are especially vulnerable to certain holiday-related health pitfalls, some people believe being prepared is best.

         Beehive Senior Care is here to help relieve that stress of the upcoming holidays. In addition to providing hands on care in the home, we are also here to help provide some great advice. There are some things to remember when preparing meals for seniors. Sometimes seniors don’t metabolize foods in the same way, or their taste buds might not be as sensitive to flavors as they once were. Don’t be surprise if their tastes have changed over the years or more recently. Here are a few tips:

  • Make food that is easy to chew and swallow
  • Use less salt
  • Add more seasoning (or less is they have become more sensitive)
  • Use recipes rich with nutrition
  • Remember medications- this is really important when traveling with seniors.

    Remember to ask questions. Take a moment to ask your loved one what they enjoy about the holidays. Many seniors are still able to express their likes and dislikes; not just about food, but also about traveling and who they would like to visit with.  Over the holidays, seniors with dementia may be a bit more work than you might have been expecting. Just remember, it is just as hard for them this time of year.  Try to stick with the familiar and maintain routines as much as possible. Keep your gatherings small, so as not to confuse your loved one. Focus on old memories. Short-term memories are usually the most affected by Alzheimer’s and dementia patients. Ask them questions about their childhood traditions. They might just surprise you with what they remember and you might learn something new about your loved one.




Benefits of Eating Well

Posted by paula worley on Friday, October 31, 2014

Many seniors live active and healthy lives, as well as living longer than ever before.  But as we age, our bodies and minds change. There are things you can do to stay healthy and active as you age.

  • Eat a balanced diet
  • Don’t smoke
  • Get regular check ups
  • Keep your mind and body active
  • Avoid accident and prevent falls

Eating well gives you the nutrients needed to keep your muscles, organs, bones and other parts of your body healthy. Eating well also helps to keep up your energy levels. Extra weight in seniors is a big concern for developing type 2 diabetes and heart conditions. Try choosing nutrient-dense foods for your diet. The top ten nutrient-dense foods: salmon, kale, seaweed, garlic, shellfish, potatoes, liver, sardines, blueberries, and egg yolks.

Food choices can also affect your digestion. We recommend eating more whole-grain foods with fiber, fruits, vegetables, and drinking more water.

Make one change at a time and always check with your doctor before making any big changes to your diet. Be sure to ask about any medical condition you may have that could be affected by changing your diet. Also, remember that it is never too late to start making positive lifestyle changes.

Source:  http://nihseniorhealth.gov/eatingwellasyougetolder/benifitsofeathingwell 


Simple Tips to Prevent Falls

Posted by paula worley on Thursday, October 23, 2014

Simple Tips to Prevent Falls

Each year, millions of adults over age 65 fall.  Fortunately, falls are largely preventable. One out of three older adults fall each year. Of those adults, less than half talk to their healthcare providers.  Caregivers with Beehive Senior care are always looking for ways to improve our client’s health and safety. There are many ways to help prevent falls. As you get older, physical changes and health conditions, and sometimes the medications used to treat those conditions, make falls more likely.  Begin your fall prevention plan by first making an appointment with your doctor. Some questions your doctor may ask:

  • What medications are you taking?
  • Have you fallen before?
  • Could your health conditions cause a fall?

Physical activity can go a long way toward fall prevention. Remember to always check with your doctor before starting a new exercise routine. Your doctor can provide information about activities that reduce the risk of falls by improving strength, balance, coordination and flexibility. Also, wearing sensible shoes and non-skid socks can help immensely. 

Removing Home hazards to make your home safer is a big step in fall prevention. Some of the things you should look for are:

  • Remove boxes, newspaper, electrical cords and phone cords form walkways.
  • Move coffee tables, magazine racks and plant stands from high traffic areas.
  • Secure loose rugs with double-sided tape, tacks or slip-resistant backing.
  • Repair loose, wooden floorboards, and carpeting right away.
  • Store clothing, dishes, food and other necessities within easy reach.
  • Immediately clean spilled liquids, grease or food.
  • Use nonslip mats in your bathtub or shower.

Lighten up your living spaces. You can avoid tripping on objects that are hard to see by keeping your home brightly lit.

  • Place night lights in your bedroom, bathroom and hallways.
  • Place a lamp within reach of your bed for middle of the night needs.
  • Make a clear path to light switches, or consider changing to switches that glow in the dark.
  • Turn on the lights before going up or down the stairs.
  • Store flashlights in easy-to-find places in case of power outages.

Assistive devices can also be used or recommended by your doctor. Assistive devices include:

  • Cane or walker to keep you steady.
  • Hand rails for both sides of stairways.
  • Nonslip treads for bare wood steps.
  • A raised toilet seat or armrests.
  • Grab bars for the shower or tub.
  • A sturdy plastic seat for the shower or tub.

Some solutions are easily installed and relatively inexpensive. If all else fails, you can always ask your doctor for a referral to an occupational therapist, to help you brainstorm other fall prevention strategies.

Sources:
http://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreationalsafety/falls/adultfalls.html
http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/healthy-aging/in-depth/fall-prevention/art-20047358
Beehive Senior Care, Home Safety Evaluation 


10 Low Impact Exercises for Seniors

Posted by paula worley on Friday, October 10, 2014

10 Low Impact Exercises for Seniors

Benefits of a low-impact exercises can range from stretching and strengthening muscles, reducing stress, preventing injury and even helping to lower your blood pressure. Seniors are no exception to exercising for good health. You should always talk to your doctor before starting any new exercise regimens.  Low-impact exercises fall into four categories: Endurance, strength, flexibility, and balance. You should always incorporate all four categories into your weekly routine.

10. Walking:
  • Focus on posture while walking, keeping your back straight and shoulders rolled back
  • Start with shorter distances and increase your walks by a few minutes each time. 30 to 60 minutes is ideal.

9. Swimming:

  • Improving endurance and flexibility, swimming is a very beneficial low-impact exercise.
  • Forgetting to stay hydrated is still very important while swimming.  Working out in water does not mean you can get away with drinking less.

8. Cycling:

  •  Cycling in very easy on the joints. Your body absorbs minimal shock from pedaling
  •  If an upright bicycle is too hard on your back, neck, or shoulders, try a recumbent bike instead
  •  Cycling can improve health by easing arthritis pain, assisting with high blood pressure, and improving your mood.

7. Stretching:

  • Flexibility and range of motion is important in daily activities. Stretching can be especially beneficial for seniors.
  • Stretch before exercising, as well as, some general stretches in the morning and evening.
  • Take it slow, and never push yourself to the point of pain

6. Lifting Weights:

  • Weight-lifting exercises are actually an excellent low-impact way to build muscle and improve overall health
  •  30 minutes of strength training is beneficial for each muscle group twice a week, taking at least one day off in between working the same group
  •  “No pain is good pain” if an exercise causes you pain, back off an try a lighter weight         

5. Water Aerobics:

  • Taking advantage of the waters resistance to strengthening your muscles combines both cardiovascular exercise with strength training for a low-impact full body workout.
  • Water takes the stress off of your joints and allows you to build strength and endurance.

4. Yoga:

  • Yoga combines endurance with stretches, strength training and balance
  • Seniors don’t need to be left out of yoga benefits. A good instructor will offer alternative positions to poses that you have trouble with.

3. Gardening:

  • Spending time in the garden is not only enjoyable to some, it is also a beneficial way to get in your daily exercise.
  • Bending and squatting may be too much for some seniors. A gardening stool and the right tools can go a long way.

2. Tai Chi:

  •   Meditative exercise that flows slowly from pose to pose. Very much like yoga, tai chi is low-impact and it improves balance, strength and flexibility.
  •   Since Tai Chi is gentle it is excellent for seniors who are overweight or have knee, hip or ankle pain.

1. Golf:

  •  Health benefits for seniors that golf includes; increased flexibility, strength, and endurance training.
  • If you are not able to walk the whole course you can gradually add more walking each time you play.
  • Golfing for health is not all about the score.  It is about having fun and getting exercise at the same time.

 Sources:
http://health.howstuffworks.com/wellness/aging/senior-health-lifestyle/10-low-impact-exercises-for-seniors.htm