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Caring for Seniors with Parkinson’s Disease – Edmonton

The challenges that come with Parkinson’s Disease can impact many areas of seniors’ lives. Parkinson’s Disease is a degenerative neurological disease that is progressive in nature. Parkinson’s is more common in men than in women, and is also more common among older adults than younger ones. Genetics is also a risk factor when it comes to Parkinson’s, as individuals with a family member with Parkinson’s are more likely to develop the disease themselves. The impacts that Parkinson’s Disease can have upon a seniors’ life are widespread and significant. Navigating the many changes and challenges that come along with this disease can be emotionally taxing, so support from loved-ones and caregivers is essential for seniors as they adjust to their new realities with Parkinson’s.  Being Prepared When it comes to Parkinson’s Disease, becoming aware and prepared for the changes that are coming can make a significant difference to how the adjustment process plays out. Symptoms of Parkinson’s can vary from one person to another, so research and consultation with healthcare professionals is incredibly important so that seniors and their caregivers have a good base of knowledge and aren’t overly surprised by the things that might come up as the disease progresses.  Keeping Connected Making sure that you remain connected as you navigate the challenges that come with Parkinson’s Disease is important from a care perspective, but it is also important to hold on to strength of relationships. Some of the cognitive and speech changes that can come in later stages of Parkinson’s can make communication a little more challenging for some, but learning to adapt and keeping a healthy line...

Seniors and Stroke – Edmonton

Stroke is among the most common causes of serious injury or death among seniors. A Stroke, and the changes that may come as a result of this health event, can cause meaningful changes in seniors’ lives. Understanding what a Stroke is and what steps you can take to minimize your risk can be important, especially when moving up in age. Stroke? A Stroke takes place when a blockage of blood-flow to the brain occurs suddenly, and the impacts that a Stroke has upon the body are largely determined by which areas of the body receive blood from the blocked vessel. Risk Factors A Stroke is something that can happen to anyone at any time in their lives, but the risk does significantly increase with greater age (particularly after the age of 55). For this reason, seniors are generally at a higher risk of stroke simply because of their age, but there are also other lifestyle and health related risk factors that seniors should be aware of so that they can modify their lifestyles and tend to their wellbeing in ways that address these potential problems. High Blood Pressure Obesity ( and Poor Diet/Lack of Activity) Diabetes Smoking High Cholesterol What are the Signs? Getting medical attention immediately is essential when it comes to a Stroke. The following are some signs that you can look out for that signal a need for immediate medical attention: Droopy Face Inability to Raise Both Arms Slurred Speech Because the areas of the body impacted by the Stroke may vary depending on the blood vessel that has the blockage, there is variation in the...

Seniors and Celiac Disease – Edmonton

Celiac Disease can impact seniors’ lives in a number of ways. Celiac disease is something that has gained a great deal more attention over recent years, with the gluten-free diet becoming more common now than it ever has been before. While most of the attention and literature surrounding Celiac Disease is centered around children and young adults, seniors facing the symptoms of the disease, whether diagnosed or undiagnosed, can encounter various harmful health concerns. For this reason, developing an understanding of Celiac disease, its symptoms, and how to address associated concerns is important for seniors and their caregivers. What is Celiac Disease? Celiac Disease is a condition of digestion that causes an immune reaction within the small intestine whenever a person eats foods containing the protein gluten. This immune reaction causes damage to the inner surfaces of intestines and prevents them from absorbing important and vital nutrients. Some common gluten-containing foods are bread, pasta, pizza, baked-goods, and any other food containing wheat or certain other grains. Gluten is also present within a lot of processed food. Potential Signs of Celiac Disease There are a variety of symptoms associated with Celiac Disease that can cause problems. Seniors who are facing a combination of the following symptoms on a regular basis should consult their doctor to discuss possible causes and whether Celiac Disease may be the culprit. Abdominal Pain Muscle Cramping Diarrhea Joint Pain Tingling in Extremities Mood Changes (i.e. Irritability, Depression, etc.) Fatigue Anemia Vomiting Constipation Weight-Loss Atypical Stool  Diagnosing Celiac Disease Celiac Disease is not always easy to identify, and it may take a while to arrive at the...

Keeping Healthy Kidneys – Edmonton

Kidney health is important, but tending to our Kidney’s isn’t often on the top of our priorities list. With the many healthcare needs that come with advanced age, some important areas of the body can become neglected amidst all of the other things seniors have to take care of, but maintaining health Kidneys is important for overall wellbeing. What to Kidneys Do? Our Kidneys are responsible for a lot of filtration of toxins and waste out of the blood, and also play a role in balancing the amount of water in the body, and regulating blood-pressure. The functions that our Kidneys perform are important for maintaining overall health, so tending to the Kidneys themselves is truly important. Kidney Health Things such as medications, infections, illnesses, and other facets of health in older age can impact and slowly take a toll on Kidneys over time, so there is often a decline in Kidney function with age. The problem with damage to the Kidneys is that there are not often that many noticeable symptoms until things get dire and Kidney function is significantly impaired. It is, therefore, important to tend to Kidney health and keep them in good shape so that problems don’t arise and go unnoticed. Kidney Disease Kidney diseases are most often detected through bloodwork or urinalysis well before any noticeable symptoms become apparent. While Kidney damage is something that is usually sustained gradually over time, there are also instances in which the damage can occur quickly if certain factors intersect to create a problem. There are some warning signs that may indicate Kidney disease and should motivate seniors...

Detecting Substance Abuse in Seniors – Edmonton

Research has indicated that Substance Abuse is a growing and significant problems amongst the senior population. With the many changes and challenges that come along with growing older and entering the later stages of life, seniors may struggle to manage the emotions and feelings that come along with this time in their lives. As families change and move away, social circles get smaller and connections become lost, and normal aspects of life become more challenging than they once were, some seniors find themselves feeling lost for a way to deal with things and turn, instead, to something they feel can numb the pain. Substance abuse is a coping mechanism that we might not always notice in our senior loved ones if we aren’t tuned in to the behaviours and changes that come along with it, but with the more delicate state of health in which seniors find themselves, the impacts of a substance abuse problems can be incredibly severe. Older age makes the body more susceptible to the harmful impacts of these substances, and their interaction with other medications or health problems that seniors may be facing can be dangerous. In working towards the goal of improving seniors’ quality of life and ensuring that they are as healthy, happy, and well as can be, it is important to be aware of the possible signs of substance abuse so that support can be offered to help seniors discuss their struggles and better tend to their health as they continue to grow older and face life’s challenges. Some Signs It may be more difficult, in some cases, to detect signs of...

Keeping Busy in the Winter – Edmonton

Depending on the type of activities that they enjoy, some seniors may find it harder to find entertainment to keep them busy in the cold-weather months. There are so many things to do outside when the weather is warm, and seniors often find themselves more motivated to participate in activities out of the house when they don’t have to bundle up in layers of clothing just to get in the car. That being said, there are actually a whole host of reasons to enjoy the wintertime, despite the challenges it may present. The winter provides a nice excuse to get cozied up inside with blankets, a roaring fire, and a nice hot drink and also creates an opportunity for seniors to explore new games and hobbies to try inside. Indoor Activities for Seniors While the winter doesn’t strictly prevent seniors from spending time outside, it can make things a little more challenging in ways that motivate seniors to seek out more indoor activities, such as the following: Board and Card Games: Sitting at the kitchen table with friends or family playing a game of cards or a board game you all enjoy can be a great deal of fun. Just sitting around chatting, and playing a fun game can be a great social opportunity for seniors and can bring people together to enjoy an activity that is manageable for everyone in the winter. Bowling: Bowling can be a great activity to do with friends that allows for ample chatting time, some good physical activity, and an indoor setting that helps shut out the winter cold. Yoga: Yoga is a...