Tag Archives: senior care



Flu (Influenza) is an acute respiratory disease of viral etiology, occurring with symptoms of general intoxication and damage of respiratory tract. The influenza virus is very easily passed. The most common route of infection – airborne. Another route of virus transmission is also possible (although much rarer) and that is infection through various articles of daily use.

Flu is a severe viral infection that affects people regardless of sex or age. This is an acute disease that is characterized by an acute toxicosis, catarrhal symptoms in the form of rhinitis, stuffiness in nose and cough with bronchi lesion.

Flu in elderly patients causes the largest number of complications, and it is quite difficult to cure it, because the immune system of people after 59 years is significantly weakened.
The regular flu can turn into a tragedy for an elderly person who is suffering from chronic diseases.

What is different about the flu in elderly patients against the flu in people of other age categories?

Peculiarities of influenza in seniors

- The majority of people of this age group have not one, but a whole bunch of chronic diseases, therefore, the flu in such patients will proceed particularly hard with possible hospitalization.

- The frequency of complications after the recent flu in this age category is many times higher than the permissible percentage (up to 70% of flu cases have serious complications on the cardiovascular system, lungs, kidneys, acute exacerbation of chronic diseases).

- The risk of death in a case of severe influenza among the elderly is several times larger than that of middle-aged people, frequently visiting the areas with large concentrations of people. This means that a person of the age 35-40 years with a chronic disease and always using subway services, is less likely to get sick during the seasonal flu period than the older man, who came in a regular store to buy some bread, and the risk of getting a severe complication is significantly higher for an older person.

- Elderly people at the age of 65 and over, especially living alone, seriously suffer from flu, because they have to take care of themselves, and therefore, during the first 3-4 days there is a high risk of dehydration and increasing stress on heart.

- Unlike young people, seniors get sick with flu faster, stay sick longer, and often do not seek medical advice, engaging in self-treatment, or come absolutely sick to a clinic, becoming a source of infection for other people, and exposing themselves to a risk of complications, incompatible with life.

- Seniors have an extremely weakened immune system, so the flu will progress rapidly, causing complications.

- Elderly people impaired cough reflex, which leads to stagnation of bronchial mucus, which in its turn causes complications connected with the respiratory system of the sick person, provokes heart failure and may cause death.

- The presence of chronic diseases with a large number of medicines do not always allow vaccinating an elderly person.

How does the flu manifest itself in elderly patients?

The flu manifests itself approximately the same as that of other people, but older people suffer through the flu much harder – organism can no longer serve them as truly as before, the work of many organs, including the immune ones, is partially impaired.

Flu symptoms:

• Fever
• Total weakening of the whole body
• Chills
• Headache and muscle aches
• Severe fatigue that lasts up to three weeks
• The pressure in the chest, cough, runny nose
• Dry throat and nose
• Difficulty in breathing
• Sometimes gastrointestinal disorders may appear in seniors with flu: nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. However, these symptoms are more characteristic of childhood.

Possible flu complications in seniors

These complications can manifest themselves not immediately but that doesn’t make them less serious. Sometimes, in particularly difficult cases, there are several complications, for example, bronchitis and tonsillitis. Also, the symptoms of long-standing chronic diseases may aggravate, which a person previously disturbed a person, and now resumed after or with the onset of flu.

• Dehydration of the whole body
• Tonsillitis of different species
• Pneumonia
• Bronchitis
• Tracheitis
• Laryngitis
• Rhinitis

Therefore, when having any of flu complications one should immediately seek medical attention. The earlier the treatment is started, the greater is the chance to avoid more serious complications.

How to prevent flu in elderly people?

A young person can easily cope with flu in a week, but for an elderly person this disease can be fatal. Or it is rather difficult to cure. Every day of life of our beloved ones is very valuable to us, and we do not want them to suffer. Therefore it is very important to help seniors to protect themselves from the flu.

The best protection against the flu is annual vaccination.
Practice shows that vaccinations that are properly selected and are done at the right time, reduce the risk of flu by 80%. Studies show that vaccination in the elderly can reduce mortality rate due to influenza in nearly 90% of cases, and the possibility of hospitalization – up to 70%. These are very large numbers. Behind them – a lot of lives.

How to treat the flu properly in seniors?

Flu treatment in elderly patients is not limited to pharmacy drugs. To eliminate dehydration and remove toxins it is necessary to drink plenty of warm fluids (not soda). It can be fruit drinks, brews, teas, mineral water without gas.

Also, you need to protect yourself from stress – for a weakened organism, it is destructive, moreover, it disrupts the nervous and immune systems.

In old age, almost all people are taking some medicines. Therefore, you must make sure that these drugs can be combined with preparations for the prevention of influenza or its treatment. Your doctor should consult you on this question.

The usual medication for the elderly, eliminating the symptoms of flu at the initial stage is Relenza (zanamivir) or Tamiflu (oseltamivir). If you take these medications (one of them) for two days after noticing flu symptoms, the disease will significantly reduce its course and will be suffered through much easier than without treatment. Flu in seniors can be prevented if they would take good care of their health. But if you are already sick, see a doctor immediately, because in this case, timing is critical.

Seek medical advice immediately if the following symptoms occur:
- If you start feeling difficulty in breathing
- Flu symptoms do not improve, but worsen after 3 or 4 days
- After the flu symptoms improved, and then suddenly the symptoms of a more serious illness started developing: nausea, vomiting, high fever, chest pain or expectoration of yellow-green mucus.

Take care of your beloved ones and stay healthy!

Hypertension. Causes, symptoms and treatment.

Hypertension is permanent or occasional elevation of blood pressure. It’s an insidious disease. High blood pressure often doesn’t have any symptoms, but it slowly affects the heart, brain, kidneys. The disease informs about its presence by headache, dizziness, tinnitus, short term heartache and rapid heartbeat. Also the following symptoms became possible: faintness, shortness of breath, rapid fatigability, unprovoked nose bleeding.

Normal blood pressure is considered to be 120/80 mmHg. Identification of hypertension is possible only by regular blood pressure measurement, because there can be just single jumps in pressure, for example, during physical activities, emotional experiences or after alcohol ingestion. It is important to know not only the blood pressure readings, but also how quick the blood pressure comes back to normal.

After age 40 the vasoconstriction happens, the vessel wall elasticity decreases, which contributes to hypertension. At a young age the increase in arterial blood pressure is possible on the background of diseases of endocrine glands, lungs and kidneys, as well as during the pregnancy period. The risk of hypertension increases if your immediate family members or you suffer from diabetes. Permanent neuropsychic overstrain, stresses and lack of sleep facilitate the hypertension development. Excessively salty and fatty food, smoking and alcohol abuse also raise the blood pressure. Overweight people and people with sedentary lifestyle often suffer from hypertension.

You should pay a close heed to the changes in the state of your organism, and it is recommended to measure the blood pressure at the first signs of the disease. If you noted a repeated rise of pressure, doctor’s appointment is plainly required for you, as the selection of preparations is strictly individual, and is performed on the basis of a complete diagnostics of your body.

There are some risk factors, which may cause the complications in the work of cardio-vascular system.

The following risk factors are emphasized:

1. Age. Men older than 55, and women older than 65 years.
2. The cholesterol content – total cholesterol above 6,5 mmol per liter.
3. Cardiovascular diseases in the patient’s relatives.
4. Diabetes.
5. Smoking.
6. Sedentary lifestyle.
7. Corpulence.

The risk factors are divided into two groups. The first group comprises the risk factors, which can be eliminated with doctor’s help or by your own efforts. These include diabetes, increased cholesterol, smoking, etc. The second group comprises age, genetic predisposition.

Long-lasting hypertension aggravates the cardiac performance, heartbeat increases, pulse quickens, the heart enlarges.

Besides hypertension, the increase of blood pressure may be caused by kidneys disease, malfunction of thyroid gland, structural heart defects, constriction of aorta (coarctation), etc.
Symptoms of Hypertension
Principal symptoms:

· headache;

Headache occurs more often in the occipital region, but also in temporal and parietal regions. The pain increases with mental and physical activity. Particularly severe pain accompanies the hypertensive crises.

· pain in the region of heart;

Constricting pain, long-lasting dull pain or sometimes short-term lancinating pain in the region of heart are possible in the people with hypertension.

· palpitation;

· tinnitus;

· seeing spots;

· dizziness.

Hypertensive crisis

Hypertensive crisis is a sudden short-term manifestation of hypertensive disease. The reason of hypertensive crisis is the interruption of arterial pressure regulation mechanisms, accompanied by an increase in arterial blood pressure and disorder of blood circulation in internal organs. It originates from the alteration of psychoemotional state, using a significant amount of salt in food, abrupt change of weather conditions. Hypertensive crises are often a result of the absence of hypertension due treatment. The danger of hypertensive crisis lies in the fact that it can exacerbate the existing heart and brain diseases.

Symptoms of hypertensive crisis:

· headache;
· precordialgia shooting up the arm and scapula;
· dizziness;
· faintness.

Complications of hypertensive crisis:

· myocardial infarction,
· acute cerebrovascular disorder,
· pulmonary edema,
· cerebral edema,
· lethal outcome.

Hypertensive crises are much more common in women.

Treatment of hypertension

The treatment of hypertension is mainly focused on normalization of blood pressure. The disease treatment is a complex one. One group of preparations is oriented to reduce the blood pressure. Vasodilating and diuretic preparations are also used. Sedative (obtundent) medical preparations are due in no small part to treatment. The selection of medication is strictly individual and will depend on the patient’s condition. The special diets focused on decrease of salt and liquid consumption are selected for people with hypertension. Alcohol is forbidden for people with hypertension disease as well.

Leeches are also used for hypertension treatment – hirudotherapy.

Vascular Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease: What’s the difference?

Alzheimers_text_640Very often these both diseases are mistaken for each other, this happens because both vascular dementia and Alzheimer’s disease are the forms of dementia. It is very important for family members to distinguish the difference between them.

· Alzheimer’s disease is more common that vascular dementia. The cause of Alzheimer’s disease is still unknown, and the cause of vascular dementia is a stroke or lack of normal blood supply to the brain. Doctors believe that the risk of vascular dementia can be reduced by preventing a stroke: monitoring cholesterol level, blood pressure help a lot in preventing strokes.

· The symptoms of the forms of dementia are different. The symptoms of vascular dementia are observed on an earlier stage because they are really severe and sudden. Seniors with vascular dementia experience problems with walking and movements earlier than seniors with Alzheimer’s disease.

· The difference is also can be found in the progression of the diseases. Seniors who suffer from Alzheimer’s disease experience slow cognitive decline, but patients with vascular dementia experience sudden changes one day and then have a period when these changes remain the same and then they experience another sudden changes.

· The prognosis for both diseases is also different. People who suffer from Alzheimer’s disease usually live longer because the disease progresses slower than vascular dementia. it is also harder to diagnose the survival time with vascular dementia because the main word for describing this disease is “sudden”. Please, keep in mind that statistics is only statistics and proper treatment and care can help patients to live longer.

· Both of the diseases may be difficult for family members to handle both emotionally and physically. Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia cause unpleasant changes in people and it is very important for every family member to be positive.

Social Isolation and Ways to Stop It


First of all, we need to realize that loneliness and isolation has a negative impact on health.

Recent researches and studies have shown that social isolation of elderly people has directly connected to health problems and earlier death. 59% of adults at the age of 60 and older, who consider themselves to be lonely, show significant disabilities to carry out everyday activities.

Another study that can be found in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry states the fact that elderly people who suffer from isolation and loneliness double the chances for developing dementia within three years.

Some other researches have shown the connection of loneliness with early death. Social isolation and loneliness are strong predictors for an early death, strong as alcoholism and smoking. All these results should be taken seriously and the life of seniors should be changed, they should stay connected and be socially active.

What are the ways of helping your aging parents to overcome these problems and ease the sense of loneliness and isolation?

One of the possibilities is to move into an adult family home with lots of possibilities for communication.

Social isolation can be also caused by transportation difficulties. You need to resolve this problem for your aging parents. There are different transportation options provided in most cities, you just need to contact a local agency on aging, who will provide all the needed information.

Different activities and classes can be a good answer to loneliness. Local libraries, colleges, community centers provide numerous classes, clubs, social activities, etc. it would be great if you take these classes together with your loved ones.

If you’ve noticed more serious problems than just loneliness, it’s time to talk to the doctor and at the same time it’s time to join a support group. These support groups provide important information, as well as encouragement and understanding.

Memory Loss: Important Tips to Improve Your Memory

Can’t remember? Can’t find? Forget everything? Here are simple, but important steps that will help to sharpen your memory. Sometimes these steps help to realize that your or your aged parents need help for memory loss.

Be mentally active
Mentally stimulating activities are very important at any age, but for your parents especially. Work crossword puzzles. Ask your parents to read an article and then retell it. If they still drive, encourage them to take different routes. Learning to play a musical instrument or improving of the computer skills can help to sharpen their memory.
Socialize a lot
Social inclusion helps to fight depression and stress. Experts say that stress and depression can lead to memory loss. Use every opportunity to include your loved ones in different social activities, meetings, clubs, etc.
Stay Organized
Very often we forget because our house, our life and our mind is cluttered. It’s time to straighten things up. Give your elderly parents a special notebook, calendar or teach them how to use an electronic planner. Encourage them to write down everything they want to do, where they want to go, etc.
Good Sleep
Getting enough sleep should be a priority not only to elderly people, but for them it is twice important.
Eat Healthy
Healthy food is good not only for your physical body, but also for your brain and your spiritual well-being. Whole grains, fruits and vegetables should be found in every kitchen. It is also important to choose for your parents such products as fish, lean meat and poultry. Encourage them to drink enough water.
Stay Physically Active
Physical exercises increase blood flow not only in the brain, but in the whole body. Take your parents for a walk as often as possible, spend time outside, travel with them.
Remember that you need to consult a doctor if memory loss doesn’t allow your parents to complete usual daily tasks.

Elderly People and Social Media


Social networks are considered to be a wonderful way for getting news and for entertaining. At the same time social media are great for keeping in touch with family and friends. They can play an important role in the life of elderly people who live on their own or at adult family homes.
Why? Here is the list of benefits…
First of all, these people have the possibility to stay in touch with their family, relatives and friends. For seniors, it’s an additional reminder that they are loved and cared. Social media keep them on the same page with their families, and elderly people feel that they are still included into the family life.
The next thing social networks give to seniors is the possibility to share videos or photos. Your loved ones enjoy the pictures of grandchildren and other members of the family. Sometimes it is better to see once than to hear million times.
The activity of different members of the family on social networks gives the sense of peace to elderly people. They see the posts or pictures that have been liked and they understand that everything is fine. Peace is in their mind and in their heart.
Results from a new study on seniors’ use of social networking sites suggest that older adults who use Facebook may experience an improvement in cognitive abilities. Experts agree that social networking helps to improve their cognitive performance and make them feel more socially connected. Social media sites are beneficial to our parents socially and cognitively, it is important that they understand how to use the technology properly, so they can keep their private information secure.
Encourage your parents who live alone to join social media. Be ready that their first answer will be NO! Many of them are afraid of computers, gadgets, etc. Explain to them, teach them, and give them tasks to complete. Try to convince them that social networks are bridges to the family and friends. It would be nice if grandchildren take their time and demonstrate how social networks work.


Is Seniors’ Adapting to Disability Possible?


Lots of studies and researches that are dedicated to adapting possibilities to disability have been conducted in US. Recent studies of University of Michigan Institute for Social Research have shown that only about one third of Americans at the age of 65 and older utterly and completely can care of themselves. These people can leave independently and do not need any kind of assistance.

This new study also proved that there are different ways seniors adapt to different kinds of disabilities in their lives.

A research professor at the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research has stated that such studies help to develop policies concerning public heath and the quality of life of older Americans.

Researches analyzed data of 8,077 men and women at the age of 65 and older.

The main results of the study included:

  1. About ¼ were able to succeed in accomplishing daily tasks using assistance devices, such as walkers, scooters, bath-shower seats, etc.
  2. 6% of respondents felt much better about their disabilities when the number of daily activities was reduced, for example going outside less often.
  3. 21% said that they would feel much better if they receive help from other people.

It should be said that this study was the first one that estimated the ways of adapting to limitations in daily routine of older Americans.

The group of respondents, who use assistance devices and try to lead an independent life, seems to enjoy their life on the same level as those who can utterly and completely take care of themselves.

Researches analyzed data about such daily activities as going outside, getting out of bed, eating, getting around the house, using the bathroom, getting out of bed, dressing, etc.

The respondents were also asked whether they have encountered or experienced any kinds of difficulties in using assistance devices or whether they have been helped by other people over last year.

The results also showed that the proportion of seniors to perform daily activities varies by age and by activity.

For example, 90% of seniors are able to eat by themselves, but only 54% of respondents said that they are fully able to bathe.

As for the age…45% of respondents at the age of 65-69 are able to function independently, but only 4% can do it at the age of 90 and older.

Women tend to use assistance devices and to live independently more eagerly than men, 26% of women compared to 23% of men.

At the same time older adults with low incomes are less likely to be accommodated to the limitations and declines in their abilities to function.

The results of the study prove that we need to be very sensitive to the needs of older adults. Our team at Day View Adult Home will gladly help those who have difficulties with adjusting to the limitations in functional abilities. We are here to be near you all the time.

How to Find a Great Adult Family Home

how-to-find-good-adult-family-homeAdult Family Homes recently have taken one of the leading places in the senior care field. How to find the best adult family home for the people you care about? Today, experts from Day View will help us to get outside of this question.
Find a location
It is very important to find a location that you will really like. The new home should be as close as possible to your house, so that you can visit your relatives as often as possible. Internet may help a lot in finding the best location. You can also ask friends or relatives for referrals.
Visit every home you’ve chosen
Once you find the desired homes, it is very important to visit them. First of all, drive by every home and see how good the house is. Is this house in good shape? Is a garden well-kept? And is a backyard well-groomed? Take into consideration even small details.
Experts recommend visiting these homes for several times. If you want to observe the details, try to come during mealtime and observe the quality of the services provided. While visiting, try to answer such questions as:
Do staff and residents go along with each other?
Does the house look and smell clean and fresh?
What activities are provided to the residents?
Observe while visiting, ask questions…
Ask for the documents and qualification certificates
Of course, if you want, you can ask for the certificates, the most recent state inspection reports, etc.
Check negative feedbacks and reviews in the Internet.
If it is too much that you can handle, you may contact an eldercare referral agency that will help you find a good home that will suit your requirements.
If you have questions, feel free to contact us, we will be glad to help you!

Adult Family Homes: Pros and Cons


No one will deny that a decision to place a parent or a relative into an Adult Family home is not an easy one. Just on the contrary, this is one of the toughest decisions a person could make. People are afraid of the sense of guilt, frustration and emotional stress.

First of all, in this first article, lets’ try to understand what an Adult Family home is.

There are special characteristics and requirements to such types of homes. They provide personal care services up to six adults. Usually adult family homes are located in private houses in residential neighborhoods. Such homes can be run by a family or a single person, who may live in the same building; or they can be run by special employees who work in shifts.

Experts from Day View Adult Family Home are sure that living in an Adult Family home has more pros than cons.

Sometimes people think that they can provide much better care themselves, but they do not take into consideration that they won’t be able to be with their loved one every minute.

Psychologists say that there should not be any sense of guilt or frustration, because giving your loved ones in the hand of professionals is much better than leave them out in the cold.
So, here is a list of pros and cons to Adult Family homes


1. Relatives and loved ones will have 24/7 care from professionals.

2. They will surely have better diet that can be prescribed by a doctor.

3. Adult Family homes are better equipped and have professionals that work with adults and elderly people. Such homes provide all residents the warmest, compassionate and qualified care in a safe, respectful, home like environment.

4. Living in a traditional house under supervision of the professionals is much better than living alone.

5. There are only 6 people that live in Adult Family home; every person receives enough attention and care.


1. The biggest problem with choosing an Adult Family home is to find the closest one. And in most cases it is difficult to do.

2. You will not be able to see your relatives whenever you want, especially if you have lived close to each other.

3. The most unpleasant thing in this situation is the fact that your loved ones think that they are not loved or welcomed anymore. They feel lost and forgotten. This problem may cause more serious problems such as mental health diseases. But it is very important to communicate with each other and discuss why you want to place your loved ones in an Adult Family home.

So, at the end, we would like to say that Adult Family homes have more pros than cons… But the decision is yours.

If you are interested in Day View Adult Family Home or you have questions, please contact us anytime and we will gladly help you.