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Kansas City Home Care Blog

The Warning Signs of Stroke

The faster you’re treated after a stroke, the more likely you are to survive. Early detection and treatment can also minimize brain damage and lower your risk of long-term disability. So it’s important to recognize stroke symptoms when you see them. Here are the common symptoms of stroke. Since you need to act quickly in the event of a stroke, the acronym FAST can help you remember them: FACE. When smiling, does one side of the face droop? ARMS. After lifting both hands, does one drop back down? SPEECH. Is speech slurred or otherwise odd? TIME. If the answer to any of the above questions is yes, it’s TIME to call for help. Remember, every minute counts. So you’ll want to dial 911 instead of taking […]
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It’s Time For Your Annual Flu Shot

If you haven’t already, you’ll probably soon begin seeing signs advertising flu shots at Kansas City area drug stores. Although the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends flu shots for anyone over the age of six months, it’s especially important for seniors to get vaccinated for the flu. And if you’re caring for someone who has Alzheimer’s or other type of dementia, or anyone older than 65, everyone in your home who’s over the age of 6 months should get a flu vaccine. Including the person who has Alzheimer’s. When to Get Your Flu Shot The CDC says you can get a flu shot as soon as it becomes available at Kansas City area pharmacies. Although it’s best to get it by October 31, […]
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Caring for Someone Who’s Not Very Nice

It’s tough being a Kansas City caregiver. Even harder to take care of someone who doesn’t seem to appreciate what you do for them, criticizes you, and/or is verbally or physically abusive. Sometimes, people who require 24-hour senior care become angry and frustrated by their limitations, which causes them to lash out. People who have Alzheimer’s (or other form of dementia) tend to become verbally or physically aggressive, particularly during the later stages of illness. And some people are just plain mean to begin with. Here are some tips that can help smooth things over: Be patient. Try to determine the source of the anger. Is it frustration? Fear? Instead of fighting back, ask questions to see if you can determine why your loved one […]
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8 ways to relieve pain from osteoarthritis

Around 27 million Americans  are suffering from osteoarthrosis, a chronic condition that causes joint pain. If you’re one of them, you know just how painful osteoarthritis can be. Your Kansas City rheumatologist or primary care physician can prescribe medications to help with the pain, but there also lifestyle changes you can make to ease your discomfort. Here are some suggestions: Exercise. Exercising while you’re in pain may seem counterproductive at first, but it will definitely pay off in the long run. Exercise will strengthen your bones and your muscles, which will relieves stress on your joints and improve your flexibility. Eat healthy foods. A balanced diet can help reduce osteoarthritis pain. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables and whole grains. Lean meats (e.g., chicken, turkey), fish that’s […]
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Avoid Heart Attacks by Managing Your Heart Disease

If you have heart disease, you probably already know you’re at risk for a heart attack. Especially if you have other heart attack risk factors, such as: Age >65 Male gender Family history of heart attack High cholesterol High blood pressure Diabetes Obesity Stress Even if you do have other heart attack risk factors, certain lifestyle changes can greatly reduce your risk for heart attack. Here are some examples: Eat right. Choose foods that are low in sodium and low in saturated and trans fats. Eat lean meats, low-fat dairy products, lots of fruit and vegetables, and whole grains. Limit portion sizes. Avoid sugary drinks (e.g., soda). Exercise. Aerobic exercise (e.g., walking, swimming, riding a bicycle) can help you lose weight, reduce blood sugar, improve your cholesterol, […]
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Are You at Risk for Diabetes?

There are currently 30 million people in the U.S. who have diabetes. And 25% of those people don’t even know they have it. Could you be one of them? If not, is there a chance you’re at risk? Types of Diabetes and Risk Factors There are two main types of diabetes: Type 1 diabetes: Thought to be an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system attacks the cells that produce insulin. Risk factors for Type 1 diabetes may include: Family history of Type 1 diabetes Certain viruses Environmental factors Type 2 diabetes:  A condition in which your body doesn’t produce insulin or doesn’t use insulin effectively. Risk factors for Type 2 diabetes may include: Obesity Age (>45) Sedentary lifestyle Family history of diabetes A history of […]
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Keeping Your Balance as You Age: How to Avoid Falls

If your exercise program doesn’t include balance exercises, you’re still at risk for falls. Balance exercises improve your strength and flexibility. They also sharpen the sensory perception needed to keep your balance. Adding some simple balance exercises to your current workout routine can help you maintain or regain your balance, thereby reducing your risk for falls. Here are some examples, most of which can be done from your Kansas City home: Stand on one leg. Stand on one leg for 30 seconds; then switch to the other. If necessary, find something to hold onto at first while attempting this exercise. Once you’ve gotten to where you can do this on both sides multiple times without wobbling, try doing it with your eyes closed. Walk heel-to-toe. […]
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Planning for Cataract Surgery in Kansas City

If you’ve been looking through clouded lenses, it may be time to start thinking about cataract surgery so you can see clearly again. And Kansas City is a good place to be if you need cataract surgery. It’s boasts some top notch eye surgeons. Need help getting started? Follow this simple plan: Step 1: See your ophthalmologist. Not all cataracts require surgery, so you’ll want to make sure you and your eye doctor are on the same page. Surgery is usually recommended when cataracts begin to interfere with your everyday life. Your eye doctor may (or may not) refer you to another Kansas City specialist for surgery. Or you can get recommendations from friends and family. Step 2. Ask questions. Here are some things you may […]
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5 Tips for Managing COPD

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), is a lifelong medical problem. However, there are medical treatments, and also lifestyle changes, that can help improve your quality of life if you have COPD (e.g., chronic bronchitis, emphysema). Here are some things you can try. Avoid pollutants. COPD is most often caused by smoking cigarettes, but you can also get it from long-term exposure to secondhand smoke, air pollution, or chemical fumes. If you’re still smoking, it’s time to quit. Your Kansas City primary care physician (PCP) can help. If you work in a place where you’re exposed to chemical fumes or other types of air pollution (e.g., dust, lead, asbestos), ask your supervisor about respiratory protective equipment. See your Kansas City pulmonologist on a regular basis. If you don’t […]
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Managing Bladder Control Problems

Bladder control problems (also known as urinary incontinence) are common in older adults. Many people view them as a normal sign of aging and figure they just have to live with them. But that may not necessarily be the case. There are three common types of urinary incontinence: Urge incontinence: When you have frequent urges to run to the bathroom, but don’t always get there in time Stress incontinence: Leakage of urine when you laugh or sneeze Overflow incontinence: Frequent (or constant) leakage of urine There are ways to manage (or even eliminate) all of these bladder control problems. So if you find your incontinence has confined you to your Kansas City home, or has otherwise interfered with your normal activities, it’s time to go […]
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