Home Care News

Answers to Your Top Senior Home Care Services Questions from the Beaumont, TX Senior Care Team

You’re concerned that Mom may be in need of some help at home, and so naturally, you know exactly where to turn for assistance, right? No? Rest assured – you’re not alone. Millions of people in the U.S. are facing the same dilemma, and most people don’t know much about senior home care services until the need for care occurs.

If you’re in the initial stages of considering home care options, it’s helpful to have some insight into what exactly senior home care is and how it works. To help you through this process, the professional Beaumont, TX senior care team at Montebello Home Care has put together some frequently asked questions pertaining to home care, along with the appropriate answers to help you make better, more informed care decisions for a senior loved one.

Q:        Can Medicare pay for long-term in-home care?

A:         No. While it’s true that Medicare may help in paying for some home health care costs within very specific parameters, it was never meant to cover long-term in-home care.

Q:        Is it more cost-effective to hire a caregiver privately than utilizing a professional senior home care agency?

A:         No. While initially it may seem that hiring an independent caregiver is more affordable than hiring a caregiver through a professional home care agency, there are many unrevealed expenses when hiring a private caregiver. For example, with a privately hired caregiver, you are the person’s employer, meaning it’s your duty to cover taxes, worker’s compensation, and more. When working through a senior home care agency, you do not have to worry about or cover the cost for any of these items.

Q:        Is home care an appropriate choice for a senior with Alzheimer’s or dementia?

A:         Yes. Montebello Home Care provides highly skilled, compassionate Alzheimer’s and dementia care in Beaumont, TX and the surrounding area. Our caregivers are provided with ongoing training on how to provide the highest quality services to seniors, offering families much-needed breaks from care and peace of mind.

Q:        What do ADL and IADL mean?

A:         ADL refers to Activities of Daily Living, or activities that occur on a daily basis, such as showering, dressing, moving from the bed to a chair, walking, etc. IADL refers to Instrumental Activities of Daily Living, and addresses such activities as managing household expenses, shopping, using the phone, etc. ADLs and IADLs are assessed when determining which level of care is most appropriate for an older adult.

Montebello Home Care can help seniors with both ADLs and IADLs, leading to safer, more comfortable, and more independent lives at home.

We know you likely have some additional questions about senior home care services, and we’re always here to provide the answers you need. Contact us any time at 409-276-7576 to learn more about our exceptional Beaumont, TX senior care services.

Beaumont, TX Home Care Tips: How Help at Home Improves Life for Seniors

As we grow older, it’s common to begin to experience difficulties with everyday activities, such as bathing, dressing, preparing meals, or even driving a vehicle, which can bring on concerns that these challenges mean that we’ll need to give up not only our freedom, but our home as well. But there is good news for seniors: help at home with professional home care services, such as those provided by Montebello Home Care, can actually enhance self-reliance for older adults and help them continue to live at home where they are most comfortable.

And the truth is, these days, the majority of older individuals are deciding to receive the care they need in the comfort of home. To help you better understand just what home care is, our Beaumont, TX home care experts have compiled the following information on in-home senior care:

  • In-home senior care services are provided on an individual basis, resulting in more personal attention than in a nursing home or assisted living facility. There is no need to have to wait your turn when care is needed.
  • A caregiver providing help at home can encourage a healthier lifestyle. In-home caregivers are competent in preparing healthy and delicious meals that are appetizing to the individual and can also help track the amount of food consumed.
  • A personalized, ongoing exercise plan can be put in place and followed through with the help of an in-home caregiver, offering the extra safety measure of a qualified professional being on hand during exercising.
  • Home care improves dignity and freedom, vital factors for a contented life. Home care (particularly private pay home care) assures personalized care specific to the requirements of the family and senior on any given day, whether the need is as simple as companionship, or more complex, such as assistance with personal care needs.
  • The extra benefit of accompanied transportation to and from doctors’ appointments, social events or running errands means that families have the chance for more quality time together.

We welcome the opportunity to talk with you and your family more about the advantages of professional help at home for seniors. Contact Montebello Home Care today at 409-276-7576 to learn more about our professional Beaumont, TX home care services for older adults, and to see if our services are available in your area.

The Importance of a Good Diet for Chemo Patients

Diet for Chemo Patients

For more tips on diet for chemo patients, call on Montebello Home Care!

Maintaining a healthy diet is particularly important for those undergoing chemotherapy or another type of cancer treatment, but one of the leading side effects preventing patients from eating well is a change in how food tastes. It’s necessary to alleviate this and other obstacles to healthy eating in order to preserve the strength needed for chemo treatments and guard against infections. A well-balanced diet for chemo patients may perhaps even help cancer patients better cope with increasing levels of certain types of medications.

When suffering from challenges with changes in taste that prevent adhering to a suggested dietary plan throughout cancer treatment, the following cancer nutrition tips from Montebello Home Care can help:

  • Try varying food temperatures. For some people undergoing cancer treatment, cold food is more palatable, providing less fragrance than hot foods, which might increase feelings of nausea.
  • Experiment with a variety of seasonings. Marinades, herbs, and spices can make food more enticing. Several options to try include mint, garlic, rosemary, lemon, dill and basil.
  • Focus on oral health. Taste buds can become inflamed by chemotherapy, and bacteria amounts may become out of balance. Cleaning the teeth with a soft toothbrush and mild toothpaste a few times throughout each day, along with visiting the dentist for further suggestions, can be helpful.
  • Consume smaller portions. Smaller, more frequent meals are generally easier to digest. Be sure to include plenty of fluids, both during and between meals, as well.
  • Try gum and mints. Sugar-free gum and mints, or other flavored hard candy, can help decrease the metallic or bitter tastes in the mouth that can occur from chemo treatments. They can also stimulate production of saliva to relieve a dry mouth.
  • Partner with a dietitian. A professional dietitian who has expertise in cancer nutrition can help with advising food choices specific to the person’s particular difficulties. The dietitian can also recommend applicable vitamin supplements, high-nutrition liquid shakes, etc.

For more tips to overcome changes in taste or other side effects of chemotherapy, contact the Montebello Home Care team. Our Beaumont home health care services can help those going through cancer treatment in numerous ways, such as planning, shopping for, and preparing healthy and delicious meals, supplying accompanied transportation to medical appointments and procedures, and serving as a comforting companion. Contact our team of caregivers at 409-276-7576 to discover more about our professional in-home care services and to request an assessment in the comfort of home. To learn more about all of the areas we serve in Texas, please visit our Service Area page.

What May Be the Best Treatment Option for Hot Flashes for Breast Cancer Survivors

Best Treatment Option for Hot Flashes

At Montebello Home Care, we offer a full range of ways to help breast cancer survivors.

For so many survivors of breast cancer, the irritation of ongoing hot flashes – sometimes as often as multiple times each day – makes day-to-day life a struggle. And even though there are various treatment methods available, one surprising treatment is starting to gain acceptance: acupuncture.

In a recent study, 120 women were given a variety of treatments, reporting the frequency and intensity of their hot flashes over periods of 8, 16 and 24 weeks. Not only did acupuncture surpass medications in its ability to give sustainable relief, but even a “mock” version of the acupuncture scored almost as high.

Right now, it’s unclear whether acupuncture is recommended (and effective) for menopausal hot flashes. The symptoms are usually more severe in breast cancer survivors, who also do not have the alternative of hormone replacement therapy that other women may be able to use. Anyone considering acupuncture for relief from hot flashes should first check with her physician on whether or not it could be the best treatment option for hot flashes.

At Montebello Home Care, providers of the best Nederland, TX home care services, our care team is knowledgeable and experienced in bringing relief in a full range of ways to breast cancer survivors, and anyone else who’s recuperating from an operation or experiencing difficulties from the effects of a chronic illness or aging. Just a handful of examples of how home care services can help include:

  • Transitional care from hospital to home
  • Assistance with personal care needs, such as bathing/showering, getting dressed, and using the toilet
  • Planning and preparing healthy meals
  • Medication reminders
  • Safe transfers and ambulation assistance
  • Household chores and laundry
  • Companionship
  • And many others

Contact the in-home care experts at Montebello Home Care for an assessment, right in the comfort of your home, to discover how our caregivers can best help with your particular circumstances. Call us any time at 409-276-7576. To learn more about all of the other areas we serve in Texas, please visit our Service Area page.

Dementia Caregiving: Get the Help You Need at Home

Although scores of older adults are dealing with the challenges of Alzheimer’s disease, a far greater number of family members are struggling with taking care of them. Surprisingly, nearly 75% of family care providers are managing their senior loved ones’ dementia caregiving needs by themselves, with only 26% reaching out for professional care services.

Naturally, families want to do all they possibly can to fulfill their loved ones’ needs, but dementia caregiving can bring about an incredibly high level of both mental and physical stress. This takes a toll on the caretakers’ own health and wellness in the long run, especially once the disease progresses. And a lot of family members think there’s an all-or-nothing strategy: either oversee their loved one’s needs in the home, or confront moving the senior into residential care.

Montebello Home Care, fortunately, has an alternative that is good for seniors with dementia in addition to their family caregivers: a knowledgeable in-home dementia caregiver to give as much or as little respite care as necessary. Here is why we believe that professional dementia care in the home is the best:

  • Highly skilled care. Because our caregivers are both trained and experienced in the many intricate aspects of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia, they are in a position to proactively cope with and more easily manage even the most challenging of behaviors, like wandering, aggression, sundowning, and much more.
  • Improved safety. The possibility of accidents is heightened for those with dementia. Even something that appears as uncomplicated as helping your senior loved one into the shower or onto the toilet can add a dangerous fall risk. Professional care providers know exactly how to watch out for and avoid falls, keeping both you and your family member safe from injury.
  • Sustainable aging in place. Oftentimes, family caregivers become so stressed with wanting to meet every one of a senior loved one’s needs in tandem with their own that a transfer to a residential dementia care facility appears inevitable. However, working with a professional dementia caregiver opens up the possibility of long-term, effective care at home.
  • Peace of mind. Knowing your loved one is in competent hands means that you can take a breath, relax, and step away from the challenges of caregiving for the essential breaks that decrease stress along with the prospect of caregiver burnout and depression.

It is a good idea to investigate in-home respite care in Beaumont, TX as early in the disease as you can, to allow for a more seamless transition and to be sure that your loved one has the most beneficial care from the very beginning. Contact us at 409-276-7576 to ask about a consultation in the comfort of home, where we can design a highly customized plan of care that will improve quality of life for your senior loved one today, and as needs change in the days to come.

What You Need to Know About the Current Alzheimer’s Treatment Options

The most up-to-date Alzheimer’s statistics are worrying. The illness has become the sixth leading cause of death, overtaking both breast cancer and prostate cancer combined. And even though deaths from several chronic conditions, like cardiovascular illnesses, are decreasing, those from Alzheimer’s have increased in excess of 100%. The toll the disease takes on family caregivers is equally astonishing, with over 16 million Americans delivering over 18 billion hours of caregiving for a loved one with Alzheimer’s.

Though we have yet to find an end to Alzheimer’s disease, there are a couple of distinct kinds of Alzheimer’s treatment options that may help ease a few of the more prevalent symptoms. If your parent happens to be identified as having Alzheimer’s, there are a few options your doctor may propose:

  1. Cholinesterase inhibitors: By blocking the breakdown of acetylcholine, a chemical required for memory, attention, learning and muscle activity, these treatments can offer some benefit in the mild to moderate stages of Alzheimer’s for many patients. Dr. Zaldy Tan, medical director of the UCLA Alzheimer’s and Dementia Care Program, cautions, however, to be aware that results are going to be modest at best. “The best-case scenario is that the patient’s memory and cognitive function may improve slightly to what it was six months to a year ago – it’s not going to turn back time,” he makes clear. Included in this class of medications are galantamine (Razadyne), donepezil (Aricept) and rivastigmine (Exelon).
  2. Memantine: In the moderate to severe periods of the disease, the physician may recommend memantine (Namenda), which takes a unique approach in comparison to cholinesterase inhibitors, preventing the overstimulation of glutamate NMDA receptors which in turn often helps regain limited memory functionality. Doctors will frequently add memantine to a patient’s care plan combined with a cholinesterase inhibitor when the disease progresses.

Determining the effectiveness of these treatments calls for patience, as both take 4 – 6 weeks before benefits may be realized. And, it is imperative to weigh the benefits versus any adverse side effects, which may involve confusion and constipation in memantine, and nausea, vomiting and a reduced heart rate with cholinesterase inhibitors.

One of the most effective ways to support individuals diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in living life to the fullest is by employing the services of a specially trained caregiver who understands the disease and who will help manage the varied struggles of dementia. Contact the dementia care Beaumont experts at Montebello Home Care for more information about our highly trained, compassionate Alzheimer’s care services for seniors.

Beaumont Home Health Care: Fall Prevention Exercises for Seniors

The CDC shares that upwards of 1/3 of all older adults fall every year, and surprisingly, fewer than half of them discuss those falls with their doctors. When an older adult falls, even if it does not result in serious injury, he or she can develop an increased fear of falling, which can lead to limited activities, reduced mobility, reduced physical fitness, and eventually, an enhanced risk of another fall.

In our previous blog post, we outlined some home alterations you can make to give senior safety a boost and lower the risk of a fall. Additionally, there are certain exercises that older adults can do regularly that will increase muscle strength and improve balance, not only helping to reduce the risk of falls, but also providing the senior with more confidence and overall improved wellbeing. Check with your loved one’s doctor first, and then try the following fall prevention exercises, as suggested by the in-home care team at Montebello Home Care:

  • Leg Lifts: Raise the knee as high as your hip (if possible), using a sturdy object such as a chair to maintain balance. Hold the leg up for three seconds or more.
  • Flex and Point: In a sitting position, point the toes and then flex them. Repeat with both feet.
  • Toe Taps: While seated, simply tap the toes, repeating with alternating feet.
  • Sit-to-Stand: Use a chair for support to stand and then return to a seated position. Attempt to gradually decrease reliance on the support as legs are strengthened.
  • Calf Muscle Strengthening: Hold onto a wall, chair or the kitchen counter, and then repeatedly raise up and down on tiptoes. As strength increases, try to go higher up on the toes and eventually attempt the movement on one foot at a time.
  • Shin Muscle Strengthening: Stand and lean against a wall with heels placed 7 – 8” from the wall. Lift the toes of both of feet off the ground as high as possible.
  • One-legged Stand: Holding onto a secure object, raise one leg off the ground and maintain balance on the standing leg.

A fall at home can be devastating for an older adult. Contact Montebello Home Care, the Beaumont home health care experts, to learn more about how to help a senior you love decrease fall risk and improve safety. Call us any time at 409-276-7576 or complete our simple online contact form to get started and learn more about our top-rated home health care services in Beaumont and the surrounding communities.

Beaumont Home Health Care Services: Tips for Reducing the Risk of Senior Falls

Falling down can be painful, but for an older adult, falling can have devastating effects, including a fractured hip, which can lead to a wide range of additional health concerns. A full one-fourth of all seniors who experience a fractured hip die within six months of the fracture; a disturbing, yet preventable fact.

Making a few simple alterations to the senior’s home can help foster a safer environment and help prevent dangerous senior falls. Following are some easy home modification suggestions from the Beaumont home health team at Montebello Home Care to help reduce the risk of senior falls.

  • Lights:
    • Replace all light bulbs on a regular basis to ensure there is plenty of lighting in the senior’s home
    • Use nightlights or motion detector lights for enhanced visibility at night
    • Be sure there are no electrical cords stretched across walking areas
  • Floors:
    • Use low pile carpet or slip-proof tile
    • Remove all throw rugs, or secure them with non-slip tape
    • Utilize contrasting colors with paint, furniture and carpeting to designate changes in surface types or levels
    • Do not use floor polish
  • Bathroom:
    • Add grab bars to walls around the tub and beside the toilet, sturdy enough to support an adult’s full weight
    • Add slip-proof strips or mats in and around the bathtub
    • Use a wall-mounted liquid soap dispenser on the shower wall
    • Utilize a portable, hand-held shower head
    • Add a padded shower or bath seat

In addition to these ideas, there are plenty of products available to help with preventing senior falls at home, such as:

  • Door Alarms: If your loved one has a propensity to wander, particularly at night, door alarms can alert you or the senior’s caregiver that he or she is moving about and could be in danger of falling.
  • Monitoring Systems: Monitoring systems are a popular and efficient way to keep track of a senior’s movements in the home. Sensors can be positioned throughout the home, and some even include calling capabilities for the senior to alert a caregiver if a fall or other emergency is experienced.
  • Fall Management Footwear: These products feature rubber grips on the bottom to help prevent slipping, and are suitable for seniors who are at a heightened risk for falling. There are even water-proof, slip-resistant socks that can be worn in the bath or shower.
  • Bedrails: Many elderly falls happen during the night as seniors move about in their sleep or get up to go to a different room in the house. Bedrails can keep older adults from falling out of bed and provide something to grab onto when standing up to get out of bed.

With so many older adults deciding to age in place at home rather than moving into a nursing home, it’s imperative to ensure the home is as safe as can be. The professional home care team at Montebello Home Care can help families evaluate the risk of senior falls in the home, make home alteration recommendations, and provide the skilled, compassionate care seniors need. Contact us today to learn more about our top-rated Beaumont home health care services at 409-276-7576.

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