What are some of the routine medical tests for seniors?

A wide range of screening and
preventive measures are available and recommended for people over the age of
65. These guidelines follow the recommendations by the U.S. Preventive Services
Task Force (USPSTF) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and are based on
extensive clinical data. 
The following lists some of the
important preventive and screening measures for seniors.
  • Influenza vaccination
  • Pneumonia vaccination
  • Vaccination against shingles (60 and older; some
    doctors recommend starting at age 50)
  • Colon
    cancer screening for adults between ages 50 and 75 (younger
    starting age in high risk groups)
  • Breast
    cancer screening with yearly mammogram
    for females between 40 and 75 (younger starting age for high risk groups)
  • Prostate cancer
    screening with annual rectal exam and PSA (prostate sensitive antigen) in
    males above age 50
  • Osteoporosis screening with bone
    density scan in women above age of 65
  • Lipid disorder screening yearly for men above 35 and
    women above 45
  • Diabetes screening in people with high blood pressure,
    high cholesterol, obesity,
    or previous high blood sugar levels with or without symptoms of diabetes
  • Blood pressure screening at least once a year
  • Smoking cessation counseling
Other screening tests may be
recommended by doctors are:
  • vision and hearing exams
  • skin cancer screening
  • cardiac stress
    tests
  • thyroid function tests
  • mental status exam
  • peripheral vascular disease screening
It is worth noting that even though
these are general health maintenance guidelines, primary care doctors may draft
an individualized plan for each person based on their personal history. 
Many of these tests are recommended
to be performed periodically. As people get older, the benefits of detecting
certain diseases may diminish, obviating the need for further screening.
Accordingly, the patient’s primary physician may help guide patients with their
decisions regarding recommended health screening tests. 
Sometimes the possible risks
associated with certain tests may outweigh the potential benefits. Therefore,
there are times when the right decision for an individual is to not have
further testing for certain conditions. 
Source:
www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=22405

To
reach one of our Advanced Senior Solution’s team members, either go to
the Contact Us tab or call 727-443-2273. We’re here to help with all of
your elder care questions, care needs, and much more! Call us today for a
free no-obligation care consultation via phone or in person.

Is exercise important in health of the elderly?

Benefits of exercise in disease prevention
and progression cannot be overemphasized. 
Regular physical activity and
exercise can help manage or even prevent a variety of health problems in the
elderly. 
Heart disease, high cholesterol,
diabetes, osteoporosis, muscle weakness, certain cancers, depression, and stroke
are some the common medical conditions which routine physical activity and
effective exercising may greatly benefit the patient. 
Some of the numerous health benefits
of exercise for seniors include:
  • Weight maintenance and burning excess calories
  • Improving the ratio of good cholesterol to bad
    cholesterol
  • Building up physical endurance
  • Optimizing health of the heart, lung, and vascular
    system
  • Better delivery of oxygen and nutrients to tissues
  • Maintaining bone and muscle health
  • Reducing fall risks and arthritis
  • Mood enhancement
  • Better sleep quality and duration
Regular exercise 3-5 times a week
for at least 30 minutes is strongly advised for seniors. An effective exercise
is one which would increase the heart rate adequately to about 75% of maximum
heart rate. A person’s maximum heart rate is roughly calculated by subtracting
age from the number 220.
Walking, swimming, and exercise
machines are generally safe and can help achieve these goals. Balance
exercises, flexibility exercises, and resistance exercises (weight lifting) can also be beneficial.
As a general precaution, if symptoms
such as chest pain
or tightness, shortness of breath, or fainting or dizziness
occur during or after exercising, it is important for the individual to stop
the exercise and notify their physician promptly.
Source:
www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=22405

To
reach one of our Advanced Senior Solution’s team members, either go to
the Contact Us tab or call 727-443-2273. We’re here to help with all of
your elder care questions, care needs, and much more! Call us today for a
free no-obligation care consultation via phone or in person.

What role does diet play in senior health?

A good and healthy diet has numerous
potential benefits in the health of seniors.
Heart disease, vascular disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, strokes,
memory problems, osteoporosis, certain cancers, skin, hair and nail diseases,
and visual problems are examples of conditions which can be impacted by diet. 
Proteins, carbohydrates, fats,
vitamins, minerals, and water are all essential nutrients that make up most
cells and tissues in human body. Thus, these essential components need to be
provided in moderation through the diet for maintenance of good health. 
A balanced diet consisting of fruits
and vegetables, whole grains, and fiber is generally
recommended to provide these necessary nutrients. Avoidance of saturated fats
(animal fat), supplementation with minerals and vitamins, and consumption of
plenty of fluids are considered an important component of a healthy diet. 
Although the quality of food is
important, its quantity should not be overlooked. A large portion of a very
healthy diet can still lead to a high caloric intake. Moderate portion sizes to
achieve daily caloric goals of 1500 to 2000 are generally advised. Avoiding
empty calories are also important. These are foods which lack good nutritional
value but are high in calories. Examples include sodas, chips, cookies, donuts,
and alcohol.
Special dietary restrictions for
certain conditions are also important to follow. Restricted salt and fluid
intake for people with heart failure
or kidney disease, or carbohydrate controlled diet for people with diabetes are
general examples of such guidelines.
Source:
www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=22405

To
reach one of our Advanced Senior Solution’s team members, either go to
the Contact Us tab or call 727-443-2273. We’re here to help with all of
your elder care questions, care needs, and much more! Call us today for a
free no-obligation care consultation via phone or in person.

Medication Tips for the Caregiver

The average senior takes two to seven medications daily. As
we age our bodies change, affecting the way medications and foods are absorbed,
distributed, metabolized, and excreted.
All of these can create a greater risk of drug interactions
and side effects. The more medications the care-receiver takes daily, the
easier it is to lose track of how many to take and when they should be taken.
Caregivers should use a medication organizer for their care-receiver.
Consider these tips:
        1.      
Make sure all of the care-receiver’s doctors and
specialists are aware of what the other is prescribing.
        2.      
Make sure you understand how and when the
care-receiver is to take all of the medications.
        3.      
Select over-the-counter products to treat only
symptoms you have. Follow-up with the pharmacist to make sure there will not be
a reaction with other medications you are taking.
        4.      
Make sure all medications are clearly labeled.
        5.      
Keep medications in their original containers.
        6.      
Never take medication in the dark or in poor
lighting.
        7.      
Know what your medications look like. If it does
not look right or same, contact the pharmacist before taking.
        8.      
Only take the amount prescribed for you.
        9.      
Never take someone else’s medication.
        10.  
Follow the directions on the container. Do not
stop taking medications just because you feel better.
        11.  
Use a medication organizer.
        12.  
Don’t store medications in sunlight or direct
heat.
        13.  
Never store medications in the bathroom. There
is too much moisture.
        14.  
Use whatever means you can to help your loved
one take medication properly.
        15.  
Don’t carry medicines next to your body. That can
raise the temperature and cause some medications to break down.
        16.  
Always get your prescription filled on time so
you don’t run out. Missing even one day can make a difference in the
effectiveness of many medications.
        17.  
Use one pharmacy for all of your medicines. This
will help ensure that you don’t take conflicting medications.
        18.  
If you have any questions about your pills, make
sure you ask your doctor or pharmacist.
        19.  
Tell your doctor of you have any side effects.
        20.  
Be sure to tell your doctor or pharmacist of any
herbal supplements you are taking. Some herbal supplements can interact with
prescribed medications and cause them to be less effective.
        21.  
Know the names and doses of the medicines you
are taking.
        22.  
Keep all medicines out of the reach of children.
        23.  
Throw away any medicines that aren’t currently
prescribed to you.
        24.  
Ask your pharmacist’s advice before crushing or
splitting tablets. Some should only be swallowed    whole.
Did you know that drug misuse is one of the
top problems that doctors see in seniors? Did you know that about 320,000 questionable
prescriptions are written for seniors yearly?
Almost 40% if all drug reactions each year involve
seniors. Be responsible. If you have any medication questions be sure to ask
your pharmacist.
Source:
www.seniorslist.com/inner.php?aid-4338
To reach one of our Advanced Senior Solution’s team members, either go to the Contact Us tab or call 727-443-2273. We’re here to help with all of your elder care questions, care needs, and much more! Call us today for a free no-obligation care consultation via phone or in person.

Healthy Aging and Physical Limitations

Anyone
who has a physical limitation may have to work harder to age well and stay
healthy, but your elder must not let his or her spirit wane or look at himself
or herself as a victim.
Elders
often know their own bodies, and what they need. Having a membership to a
health club is not what gets you healthy; you actually have to do the exercise.
Whether your elder does an exercise regime on his or her own or follows a DVD
or TV workout program, it is crucial that your elder moves around on a regular
basis to stay energized, firm, and alive.
Before
starting any exercise program, consult your elder’s primary care physician for
a baseline assessment of the ideal level of physical activity. Remember to keep
it enjoyable or your elder won’t stick with it for very long. The activity must
be something that becomes a fun part of the daily routine, whether it is
walking, biking, or practicing yoga. Also make sure your elder is getting
outside for some sunshine every day and getting adequate sleep every night.
Another
proactive healthy aging tactic is to eat right and keep hydrated. This will
take planning and effort. Suggest that your elder make a list of preferred
foods that are healthy and go purchase t hem. Make sure fresh fruits and
vegetables, as well as lean sources of protein are in the home at all times.
To age
successfully, it also helps to stay closely connected to family, friends, and
to some sort of spiritual life, if you desire. Finding a place to volunteer
your time and expertise also helps. Encourage your elder to pursue anything
that makes them feel like they are a part of their community and universe at
large.
Finally,
It’s important to settle old grudges and hurts. Wipe your emotional slate clean
every day before you go to bed. Sometimes this requires an email, a phone call,
or just coming to terms with the conflict in your own mind. Be grateful for
being alive so that you can live life to the fullest.

Source:
www.seniorslist.com/inner.php?aid=4347

To reach one of our Advanced Senior Solution’s team members, either go to the Contact Us tab or call 727-443-2273. We’re here to help with all of your elder care questions, care needs, and much more! Call us today for a free no-obligation care consultation via phone or in person.

How to Cope with Your Parents Aging

How do you cope
with your parents aging? It depends if you are ready for your parents aging and
if you are close enough to help with the issues of your parents aging. It also
depends on what age your parents are, what they are going through, and how much
financial help you are able to give.
Parents Aging Needs
How you cope
with your parents aging depends on your situation. Are your parents elderly and
have experience health/medical issues for some time? Or have your parents
health declined rapidly? That will decide how you cope with your parents aging.
It comes down to how you emotionally handle your aging parents to how you will
cope.
How do you cope with Your Parents
Aging Needs?
Your aging
parents will have care needs that sometimes you are not able to care for. That is
why nursing homes and agencies like us, Advanced Senior Solutions are able to
step in and help with nursing care. If you are also busy with working a
full-time job then you will be lacking in time, but you will still be able to
provide support in other ways.
If your
parent is no longer able to care for their day-to-day living needs then maybe
you will be able to organize an assessment team to enter the home and decide
what type of home care needs your parents qualify for.
What about
the fact that your parents are no longer able to be the parent figure? There
will be a stage in your life when you will become the parent and your parents
almost become the child. Are you ready for that stage of life? How do you cope
with your parents aging needs? You will need a good support system behind you,
offering you a shoulder to lean on so that your own health will be looked
after.
Parents Do Age
All parents
age. It is a matter of when, a matter of how, and a matter of how you will
cope. If you do your research and know what options are available then you will
be emotionally and physically ready for when your parents do age. Remember you
are only human and will need a break at times from the situation of your aging
parents, and need to look after yourself before you look after another person.
Resource:
www.seniorslist.com/inner.php?aid=4381

To reach one of our Advanced Senior Solution’s team members, either go to the Contact Us tab or call 727-443-2273. We’re here to help with all of your elder care questions, care needs, and much more! Call us today for a free no-obligation care consultation via phone or in person.

6 Types of Normal Memory Loss

      1.   Absentmindedness
Where did you leave your keys? Or why
did you walk into the living room? Both of these are very common lapses that
usually stem from lack of attention or focus.
Memory
Tip:

Focus on what you are doing or thinking in any given moment, and you will stop
a lot of these lapses. If you find yourself in the middle of one, retracing
your steps, mentally or actually, can help.
      2.    
Blocking
This is the frustrating
tip-of-the-tongue moment. You know the word you are trying to say, but you
can’t quite retrieve it from memory.
Memory
Tip:

Review mentally or even write down the elements or facts of a story or event
before you talk about them. If you find yourself stuck in the moment, try to
remember other details about the event, name or place, which often will trigger
the memory you are searching for.
      3.    
Scrambling
This is when you accurately remember
most of an event or other chunk of information, but confuse certain key
details. Example: A friend tells you over dinner at a restaurant that she is
taking out a second mortgage on her home. Later, you recall the gist of her
news but think she told you during a phone conversation.
Memory
Tip:
Draw on mental cues from an experience or event to trigger
an accurate recollection. Focus on piecing together specific details of the
memory such as the time. Place, the people you saw, the reason for the event,
topics of conversation.
      4.    
Fade
Out
The brain is always sweeping out old
memories to make room for new ones, the more time that passes between an
experience and when you want to recall it, the more likely you are to have
forgotten much of it. So while it is typically fairly easy to remember what you
did over the past several hours, recalling the same events and activities a
month, or a year ago is more difficult. This is the basic “use-it-or-lose-it”
feature of memory known as transience is normal at all ages.
Memory
Tip:
Studies show that events we discuss, ponder over, record
or rehearse are recalled in the most detail and for longest periods of time. So
one of the best ways to remember events and experiences whether every day or
life changing is to talk or think about them.
      5.    
Retrieval
You were introduced to someone and
seconds later you can’t recall his/her name. Aging changes the strengths of the
connections between neurons in the brain. New information can bump out other
items from short-term memory unless it is used over and over again.
Memory
Tip:
This type of short-term memory loss can be avoided by
focusing in any given moment and eliminating distractions.
      6.    
Muddled
Multitasking
This is when the number of things you
can do effectively at one time diminishes. For example, maybe you can’t watch
the news and talk on the phone at the same time anymore.
Studies show that the older we get, the
more the brain has to exert effort to maintain focus. Further, it takes longer
to get back to an original task after an interruption.
Memory
Tip:
Avoid interruptions and concentrate on one task at a
time.  According to a 2009 Stanford
University study, this advice holds true at any age because most multitaskers
are not truly focused. “People who are regularly bombarded with several streams
of electronic information do not pay attention, control their memory or switch
from one job to another as well as those who prefer to complete one task at a
time,’ the researchers concluded.

To reach one of our Advanced Senior Solution’s team members, either go
to the Contact Us tab or call 727-443-2273.
We’re here to help with all of your elder care questions, care needs, and much
more! Call us today for a free no-obligation care consultation via phone or in
pe

Vitamin E May Slow the Progression of Alzheimer’s

There isn’t a cure for Alzheimer’s or a drug that reverses the disease, but researchers have found a treatment to slow the disease that is simple, cheap, and safe.
Among more than 600 patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease, a daily high-dose of vitamin E slowed the decline in the ability of patients to perform everyday tasks such as dress or bathe independently by about 6 months.  And, those taking vitamin E needed two hours a day less help from caregivers.
The study, which appeared in the January 1 issue of JAMA, didn’t find any improvement in the memory or thinking ability of the patients. Those taking the Alzheimer’s medication memantine or a combination of vitamin E and mematine didn’t do any better than those taking a placebo.

Source: blog.aarp.org/2014/01/03/vitamin-e-may-slow-alzheimers-progression

To reach one of our Advanced Senior Solution’s team members, either go to the Contact Us tab or call 727-443-2273. We’re here to help with all of your elder care questions, care needs, and much more! Call us today for a free no-obligation care consultation via phone or in person.

5 Ways to Fight against Breast Cancer

Almost a quarter of a million women will be diagnosed with breast
cancer this year. And while early detection and more effective treatments have
dramatically reduced the number of those who will die from the disease,
researchers are still searching for ways to prevent it altogether.
Here is the latest cutting-edge thinking from researchers.
1.       Get enough sleep
Postmenopausal women with breast cancer who
routinely sleep less than six hours a night may be twice as likely to have more
aggressive breast cancers compared with those who sleep longer hours, a new
study has found.
“Cancer is a disease of mistakes in our DNA.
Sufficient sleep is responsible for maintaining our circadian rhythm, which
regulates our body’s natural DNA repair. If that process is frequently
disrupted, so is DNA correction,” explains lead author Cheryl Thompson, Ph.D.,
of Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland.
2.       Lose weight
While the link between obesity and breast
cancer is well-known, a recent study finds that just being overweight, but not
obese, can also be detrimental for those who have already been diagnosed. The
study of more than 4,000 women shows that being obese raised a woman’s risk of
recurrence by 30% and her risk of death by 50%, despite optimal treatments such
as chemotherapy and hormonal therapy. And the risk of recurrence also increased
with increasing BMI, even in women in the overweight range. The results
pertained to women with hormone receptor-positive breast cancer, the most
common type, which accounts for about 65% of cases.
“Breast cancer is linked to increased
levels of estrogen, and fat tissue produces excess amounts of it,” says lead
author Joseph A. Sparano, M.D, of Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx, NY.
3.       Eat more cabbage
 A recent study conducted at the Harvard
School of Public Health found that women who ate about four servings of vegetables
a day minimized their chances of developing hormone receptor-negative breast
cancer by 18%.
Other research presented at the American
Association for Cancer Research Annual Meeting on April 2012 revealed that
women with breast cancer who ate the highest amount of cruciferous vegetables
per day had a 62% reduced risk of breast cancer mortality and a 35% reduced
risk of recurrence.
“Cruciferous vegetables, such as
cauliflower, cabbage, bok choy, turnip greens, and broccoli contain high amounts
of isothiocyanates and indoles, phytochemicals that appear to have a protective
effect against some types of cancer,” says researcher Seingyoun Jung, ScD, of
Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.”
4.       Drink alcohol sparingly
That would be no more than one drink per
day, according to the American Cancer Society guidelines on nutrition and
physical activity for cancer prevention. One analysis of more than 40 studies
found that just two drinks a day may raise your odds by 21%. If you already
have the disease, one recent study showed that regular alcohol consumption
(half a drink or more per day) increased recurrence in postmenopausal women by
19%.
“A possible reason is that alcohol consumption
has been shown to elevate circulating estrogen levels in postmenopausal women,”
says lead author Marilyn Kwan, PhD, a research scientist at Kaiser Permanente
Northern California in Oakland. “ If you are breast cancer survivor,  talk to your doctor and consider limiting
your intake to no more than a half drink per day or no more than three to four
drinks per week,” says Kwan.
5.       Get up and go!
Walk. Garden. Vacuum. The latest research
shows that any physical activity protects against breast cancer. And news that
tops that: It is never too late to start. A new study finds that even women who
didn’t start exercising until after menopause showed diminished risk.
“This is particularly encouraging given the
late age of onset for the disease,” says study author Lauren McCullough, of the
University of North Carolina. Women who exercised at any intensity for 10 to 19
hours per week reaped the greatest benefit; they had about 30% reduced risk. That
breaks down to about 90 minutes a day, which seems like a lot, until you
realize that all activity counts.
Source:
www.aarp.prg/health/conditions-treatments/info-10-2013/breast-cancer-prevention.html

To reach one of our Advanced Senior Solution’s team members, either go to the Contact Us tab or call 727-443-2273. We’re here to help with all of your elder care questions, care needs, and much more! Call us today for a free no-obligation care consultation via phone or in person.

7 Things You Need to Know about Osteoarthritis

To reduce your risks, halt the progression of the disease or
ease the painful symptoms, here are seven things you need to know about
osteoarthritis.
1.      
Osteoarthritis is not inevitable
Age is a risk factor in developing
osteoarthritis, but pain from osteoarthritis is not an inevitable consequence
of aging.
The thinking about osteoarthritis has also
changed, from simply a “wear and tear” disease triggered by the breakdown of
cartilage as we get older, to a condition that affects the entire joint, not
just the cartilage. This shift in thinking may help doctors diagnose
osteoarthritis before significant cartilage damage sets on, by looking for
other signs of the disease, including morning stiffness, gelling (stiffness
after rest and inactivity) and locking or buckling in the joint.
2.      
Early detection tests are in the works
Despite the prevalence of osteoarthritis,
the disease often goes undiagnosed until it is in advanced stages.
There is no Food and Drug Administration
approved diagnostic test for osteoarthritis, which means it can’t be diagnosed
with a blood test.
While it is possible to see cartilage on an
MRI or ultrasound, subtle changes to the soft tissue that occur in earlier stages
of the disease are hard to detect.
3.      
Technology to halt disease progression is on the
horizon
While osteoarthritis has been long thought
to be a disease of the cartilage, researchers at Johns Hopkins University
discovered that the bone underneath the cartilage reacts to damage by forming
new bone. This new, unwanted bone growth further stretches the cartilage,
speeding its decline.
The research, published online May 19,
2013, in the journal Nature Medicine,
found that injecting a beta inhibitor called growth factor- Type I receptor
into the bone could halt its abnormal growth.
Researchers are developing a clinical trial
and are expected to begin recruiting patient participants in 2014.
4.      
Exercise is one of the best treatment options
For people who suffer from osteoarthritis,
the idea of using exercise to reduce pain is often met with skepticism. Many of
them have experienced greater osteoarthritis pain when they’ve upped their
levels of activity.
Rebecca Manno, M.D., assistant professor of
medicine in the division of rheumatology at John Hopkins says, “When you rest
the joint, you tend to feel less pain, but the inactivity can ultimately lead
to more discomfort.”
Exercise, on the other hand strengthens the
muscles around the joint, which ultimately helps reduce pain.
Exercise also releases endorphins, which
moderate pain, and helps overweight patients lose weight and reduce the stress
on their joints.
Low-impact exercises like swimming, water
aerobics, walking, and biking will put the least strain on the joints. Yoga has
also proved beneficial for decreasing osteoarthritis pain and improving
patients’ quality of life.
5.      
Extra pounds can make things worse
Excess weight only puts extra pressure on
the joints and may also trigger inflammation and other changes that increase
pain and stiffness, said the authors of a March study in the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.
The researchers estimate that half the
cases of osteoarthritis of the knee in the U.S. could be avoided if obese Americans could
reduce their weight.
6.      
Some treatments may be a waste of money
After evaluating the evidence for a variety
of treatments for knee osteoarthritis, the American Academy of Orthopaedic
Surgeons said there was “strong evidence against” these remedies: acupuncture,
taking the supplements glucosamine and chondroitin, getting injections of
hyaluronic acid in the knee, and “knee scraping” surgery to wash and smooth the
joint.
David Jevsevar, M.D., an orthopaedic
surgeon and the chair of the clinical practice guidelines work group for the
AAOS, noted that a lot of these are “legacy treatments” that doctors continue
to suggest because they have been used for a long time, despite a dearth of evidence.
7.      
You can do something about the pain
Although osteoarthritis is a progressive
disease and there are no treatments to restore cartilage or reverse joint
damage, there are effective treatments to improve joint functioning and reduce
pain.
Over the counter medications like acetaminophen
and ibuprofen, along with topical application of anti-inflammatory gels can
offer relief, says Manno.
For more severe symptoms, doctors may suggest
cortisone inject ions.
For advanced osteoarthritis, where the pain
is disrupting sleep and normal daily activities, your doctor may recommend
joint replacement surgery.
“There are treatments we can use that could
make a difference in daily functioning and pain management,” Manno says. “You
don’t have to resign yourself to living with painful joints.”
Source:
www.aarp.org/health/comditions-treatments/info-09-2013/osteoarthritis-what-you-need-to-know.html

To reach one of our Advanced Senior Solution’s team members, either go to the Contact Us tab or call 727-443-2273. We’re here to help with all of your elder care questions, care needs, and much more! Call us today for a free no-obligation care consultation via phone or in person.