Category Archives: Senior Health

Seniors enjoying a healthy meal.

Diet Recommendation for Seniors with Congestive Heart Failure

Congestive heart failure is a serious condition that makes the heart muscles weak and severely damaged in seniors. This, in turn, prevents the heart from supplying enough oxygen-rich blood to the body and leads to shortness of breath, fatigue, rapid heartbeat, frequent urges to urinate at night, swollen feet, weight gain, as well as many other complications. Seniors diagnosed with congestive heart failure need proper nutrition and support to cope with its symptoms effectively. That is why nutritionists at assisted living care facilities prepare a low-sodium diet plan for their senior residents. This helps to boost their heart health and allows them to enjoy their day-to-day activities in the senior living community. Below are a few diet recommendations for seniors who have congestive heart failure. Foods to Avoid in the Diet As the heart muscles in seniors with congestive heart failure become weakened, many kinds of foods can damage the heart further. That is why assisted living facilities prepare low-sodium meal plans for such seniors. Foods that have high sodium or salt can cause the body to retain more fluids and lead to increased blood pressure. This can be very dangerous for seniors with congestive heart failure. To steer clear of excessive sodium intake, seniors are advised to avoid consuming foods like frozen dinners, canned soups, smoked, cured, or canned meat, salted snacks and nuts, instant pudding, cottage cheese, salad dressing, and vegetable juice. Aside from that, foods rich in cholesterol and saturated fat should also be avoided to manage […]

Read More
Lonely senior resident in assisted living facility looks out the window solemnly as he sits in his wheelchair.

How to Combat Senior Isolation and Loneliness

The feelings of isolation and loneliness are prevalent in seniors and can lead to serious health consequences. For instance, social isolation can cause psychological problems like depression and increase the risks of physical conditions like heart disease and immunodeficiency. That is why family members need to help seniors in combating isolation and loneliness. Although living alone does not necessarily lead to seniors’ social isolation, it certainly is a prime factor. That is why assisted living communities encourage seniors to socialize with other residents to stay physically and mentally healthy. Getting seniors to engage in social activities is one of the best ways to ensure that seniors stay emotionally engaged and find more meaning in their life. Below are a few tips that will help you to fight senior isolation. Keep Them Engaged Seniors who have a hobby that interests them will have a sense of purpose and are less likely to give in to the negative thoughts of being alone. Aside from stirring a sense of purpose, many hobbies naturally encourage seniors to socialize with others. A group activity can be more beneficial in this regard and keep all the participants emotionally connected. That is why assisted living facilities plan many events and recreational activities to help their residents socialize and remain active in their hobbies and interests. Ensure Proper Transportation The inability to drive or travel as they used to is one of the main things that strikes the sense of loneliness and abandonment in seniors. By ensuring they […]

Read More
Male senior citizen holds his hands onto his chest in pain.

Managing Congestive Heart Failure in Seniors

Congestive heart failure (abbreviated CHF) is a type of chronic heart disease, which mostly affects seniors above the age of 65. The phrase “heart failure” does not mean that the heart of the person will stop functioning altogether. Instead, the condition weakens the heart’s muscles and affects how it pumps blood to the body. Heart failure can be of many different types; CHF refers to a specific kind of condition wherein seniors experience excessive fluid built-up in various parts of their body. Seniors with CHF generally have trouble with performing day-to-day tasks and cannot manage their heart condition adequately. This is why caregivers at assisted living facilities offer specialized care services to seniors with the congestive heart failure condition. With proper care, the risk of hospitalization due to worsening of the disease can be avoided. Below is how staffs at an assisted living community manage CHF in their residents. Providing Assistance with Daily Routines Congestive heart failure can lead to many health complications if not managed properly. The common symptoms of the condition include cough, shortness of breath, fatigue, chest pain, and irregular heartbeat. These symptoms make it very difficult for seniors to follow their regular daily routines. For instance, seniors experiencing shortness of breath and fatigue may not be able to walk around well or perform even simple tasks like taking a shower or getting dressed. Caregivers at the senior living facility will be there to assist them with all these tasks. Assisted living communities have experienced and trained […]

Read More
Senior aged man is drinking in a fully stocked bar.

Everything you Need to Know About Alcoholism in Seniors

Alcohol consumption in seniors is a long-debated topic. While some experts say that alcohol use in a regulated setting, like under the supervision of assisted living staff, can be safe for seniors, others say that it can increase the risk of many health conditions. A recent study in Research On Aging suggested that around 70% of seniors in assisted living communities consume alcohol, while around one-third of them consumed alcohol every day. There is no arguing the fact that seniors drinking alcohol can experience a lot of health complications, especially when they already have underlying conditions like dementia or heart disease. Alcohol consumption in such cases can affect the behavior and mental health of the senior as well as lead to a rapid decline in their overall quality of life. The West Virginia University School of Public Health reported that alcohol use could worsen the existing medical conditions in seniors as well and lead to many complications in their treatment. Their reports highlighted that conditions like diabetes, osteoporosis, and malnutrition can be aggravated by alcohol intake and even cause new conditions in some seniors. Generally, seniors in assisted living will be taking multiple medications, be it prescription or over-the-counter medicines. Combining alcohol with these medications can be very dangerous and it could lead to adverse drug interactions that may reduce the effect of the medicines and even cause substance abuse. In the worst cases, the reaction could be toxic and fatal as well. Moreover, alcohol use can also heighten the […]

Read More
Regularly exercising or maintaining physical activity can help senior citizens in assisted living facilities avoid boredom as well as reduce the risk of sedentary health problems.

Avoiding Sitting Disease in Seniors in Assisted Living Facility

Exercising is one of the key elements to ensure a healthy life, which is why assisted living communities encourage their residents to lead an active lifestyle. It is also seen that a lack of exercise can be very dangerous to the overall health of seniors and can cause a host of ailments. Sitting disease is one of those conditions, which can in turn lead to a lot of health problems like type II diabetes, heart diseases, decreased flexibility and mobility, and even certain types of cancer. A recent study by Northwestern University found that sedentary behavior could be a potential cause of future physical disability and can make it difficult to manage even basic daily activities like eating, bathing, and dressing. According to the study, “Every additional hour a day you spend sitting is linked to a 50% greater risk of being disabled regardless of how much moderate exercise you get.” Many other studies have also highlighted how prolonged sitting can heighten the risk of chronic kidney disease, circulatory problems, heart disorders, and musculoskeletal issues. Besides, inactivity for a long time can lead to a feeling of isolation in seniors and take a toll on their mental health as well. This makes it very important for seniors in an assisted living facility to follow a regular exercise schedule to stay fit and active.  Avoiding Sitting Disease in Seniors A study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine said that maintaining a high level of physical activity every day helped to […]

Read More
It's common for senior citizens to develop vision loss over time whether it's related to glaucoma, cataracts, or other health conditions.

Common Causes of Vision Loss in Seniors

Seniors often experience loss of vision as they age. Changes in sight are a common concern for the elderly and it requires them to wear eyeglasses to read or view the things ahead clearly. However, studies show that there are many other factors other than aging, which can affect the eyesight of seniors as well. Some of these risk factors can be avoided, which is why it is important to be aware of the warning signs and take preventative measures to avoid total vision loss.  24-Hour caregivers at your loved ones assisted living community will be able to determine the stage of vision loss and help provide them with the care they need. Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) Macular degeneration refers to the condition when a part of the retina, which is called the macula, is damaged. There are two different types of macular degeneration, and they both lead to the loss of central vision. In most cases though, the peripheral vision remains unchanged. While aging is a common risk factor for macular degeneration, there can be other underlying causes too that could lead to the vision problem. This includes being overweight, following a high-fat diet, smoking, and high blood pressure. As there are no early symptoms of the condition, it is recommended to see an eye doctor regularly for screening and timely intervention. Assisted living communities can also help to reduce the progression of the disease by offering a special combination of vitamins and minerals in the diet. Cataracts This […]

Read More

The Benefits of Hospice Care in an Assisted Living Community

Hospice care is a type of senior care that is designed for people who have an incurable health condition. As per the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization, “Hospice is defined as a model of care that emphasizes compassion and values quality of life for those facing life-limiting illness or injury. Hospice is unique in that it uses a team-oriented approach to provide quality medical care and pain management, as well as emotional and spiritual support specific to each patient.” Hospice care aims to help seniors with managing their symptoms and live their remaining days with dignity. Most people associate hospice care with providing care at the home. Yet seniors can also benefit from hospice care services at an assisted living community. In fact, it is reported that around one-third of assisted living residents receive hospice care in their community. The caregivers take the necessary steps to provide additional care when a senior resident at the assisted living facility becomes terminally ill. Hospice care is covered by Medicare and most of the health insurance policies, so it usually does not incur any additional expenses. Sometimes, assisted living facilities collaborate with a specialized hospice care provider to make sure that their residents receive quality care in the community during their last months of life. It is seen that the early adoption of hospice care at an assisted living facility can help seniors in many ways. Hospice healthcare professionals can help seniors as well as their family members to prioritize their goals […]

Read More

Understanding Potential Signs of Dementia in Senior Citizens

It is normal for senior citizens to start forgetting things occasionally due to the age-related changes in the body. However, if the instances of memory loss are more frequent or become quite severe, then it could be more than usual forgetfulness and indicate dementia. Below is how you can differentiate between normal age-related memory problems and dementia in seniors. This way, you can make sure that your loved one gets the right type of care services in the assisted living facility. Memory Loss Symptoms in Seniors Poor memory due to aging is not that serious and not a cause of concern at all. The typical memory-loss symptoms in seniors include transience and absent-mindedness. According to Harvard Medical School, these two conditions are common signs of aging. Transience refers to a condition where seniors cannot remember old things due to decreased accessibility of memory. Studies say that this is the brain’s unique mechanism to remove old memories so that there can be enough space for new ones. Absent-mindedness, on the other hand, refers to a condition where seniors start showing inattentive or forgetful behavior. This happens due to the reduced focus of the brain, which is a common side effect of aging. There could be many other factors too, which cause absent-mindedness in seniors, such as boredom, sleepiness, or focusing on personal thoughts instead of paying attention to the external surroundings. The National Institute on Aging says that there could be many health conditions as well, which lead to memory loss […]

Read More

Everything you Need to Know about Heart Health in Seniors

Heart attacks, strokes, coronary heart diseases, and other kinds of heart-related problems are more common in seniors than in younger people. The National Institute on Aging of the US Department of Health and Human Services says that heart diseases are one of the major causes of death in the country. If not fatal, heart problems in seniors often lead to disability and take a toll on their overall quality of life. That is why it is very important to educate a senior about maintaining good heart health. The Common Aging-Related Heart Problems Seniors experience many changes in their bodies due to aging, and this includes their heart and blood vessels too. For instance, their heart becomes unable to beat as fast as it did when they were younger, especially during physical activity or when under stress. This limits the flow of blood and oxygen to the body parts, which further leads to many health complications. Below are some of the most common heart issues that are associated with aging. Arteriosclerosis: Aging causes hardening or stiffness of the large arteries, leading to high blood pressure or hypertension. This can be very serious if fatty deposits start building up inside or on the walls of the arteries. Atherosclerosis: Increased blood pressure due to aging can elevate the risk of developing atherosclerosis. This condition refers to the accumulation of fats, cholesterol, and other substances in and around the artery walls. This hardens and narrows the arteries, leading to a limited oxygen-rich blood supply […]

Read More