Recognize Diabetes Alert Day by Knowing the Signs and Taking the Test

Knowledge is the first step to managing diabetes.

by Dianna Malkowski, Physician Assistant & Nutritionist

March 25 is the American Diabetes Association Alert Day, a one-day wake-up call asking the public to take the Diabetes Risk Test. I encourage everyone to take this test to find out if they’re at risk for developing type 2 diabetes.

Your Incontinence Supplies May Be Tax Deductible

A doctor's diagnosis is an important first step.

by Lynn Wilson, Founder of The CareGiver Partnership

As costs rise for incontinence products and other home health care supplies, savvy consumers look into any possible means of reimbursement. Options for partial or full reimbursement depend on medical condition, age, financial ability and local resources.

5 Ways to Make Food Healthy and Appetizing for the Elderly

Good nutrition is essential to wellness.

by Dianna Malkowski, Physician Assistant & Nutritionist

This year’s National Nutrition Month theme is “Enjoy the Taste of Eating Right,” and its focus is how to combine taste and nutrition to create healthy meals that follow the Dietary Guidelines recommendations. 

Kegel Exercise How To

Experts recommend doing Kegels while lying on your back. 
Urge incontinence is when an individual does not make it to the bathroom because of an overwhelming sensation to urinate that causes the pelvic floor muscles to release before reaching the toilet. Stress incontinence occurs when an individual leaks because of an increased pressure on the bladder, such as from laughing, shouting, coughing, jumping, etc. This is usually due to damage that has occurred to these muscles. The most common cause of this is pregnancy and childbirth which means women are in the majority when it comes to this problem. There can also be hormonal changes (especially at menopause), which can also cause stress incontinence to occur. It should be noted however, these conditions do not have to be present for anyone (male or female). There are things that can be done to reduce the symptoms of both urge and stress incontinence. 

Why Is My Diarrhea Oily?

3 common reasons you may be experiencing oily diarrhea. 
There are many different causes of oily diarrhea in both children and adults. Some may be more of a nuisance while others can indicate a serious condition. Educating yourself about the reasons this can happen will allow you to determine if you should seek out medical intervention. 

Oily bowel movements or diarrhea are indicated by oil droplets which float in the toilet water, stools that may have white or yellow fat in them or stools that float (this is caused by a large amount oil in the stool). Some people have even reported orange or waxy bowel movements. If you notice this is happening then it is important to be aware of the many causes so you can seek out medical help if necessary.

Bladder Control Problems, A Closer Look

A closer look at bladder control problems.
Incontinence and bladder control problems are fairly common, but are often under reported, and not talked about. Most thank incontinence issues only affect the very old and very sick. You may be surprised to learn problems with bladder control affect people of all ages, health status and both genders. However, this type of problem is one of the most under-reported health issues today, and one that is very treatable. Many people allow their embarrassment and fear of public discovery keep them from gaining the treatment and relief which they need. Most types of bladder control issues can be successfully treated and managed with a consult from a health care professional and a treatment plan. 

Will Bladder Training Work For You?

Living with incontinence is not the only option.
Living with incontinence is not the only option. Too many people are embarrassed by the condition, and because of that embarrassment are reluctant to tell other family members and even their doctor. However, it is crucial to understand urinary incontinence is a treatable problem with many different treatment options. The first thing anyone should do when they are having symptoms is to see their health care professional to gain an accurate diagnosis and form a treatment plan. 

Age In Place Home Design

If your loved one wants to age in place, look for resources to help.
Most seniors want to stay in their homes as they age. Not only is this more cost effective, it is more comfortable and familiar. However, aging presents challenges, and to be able to successfully age in place, these challenges need to be addressed so seniors can comfortably and safely remain independent. 

Aging in place may necessitate changes to the home itself, monitoring for safety, and an increased need for support in order to ensure health and quality of life while maintaining independence.

The CareGiver Partnership Announces This Month’s ‘Helping You Get On With Life’ Sweepstakes Prizes

It's easy to enter our monthly sweepstakes!

by Lynn Wilson, Founder of The CareGiver Partnership

An Assist-A-Tray by Stander and a package of Heaven Scent disposal bags will be given away next month to a senior who needs them. These items are part of our efforts to raise awareness of products and services that help seniors live independently while making caregivers’ jobs easier.

Long Live the Family Caregiver

Research tells us that family caregivers actually live longer. 
Guest post by LivHOME

As a caregiver charged with the task of caring for a senior loved o
ne, you intimately understand the mental and physical stresses that go along with the job. From the sleepless nights to the frequent heavy lifting, taking on the role of caregiver can truly take its toll. In fact, hundreds of studies show how senior caregivers commonly suffer from bouts of stress, depression, physical exhaustion and illness. These facts might lead you to think that senior caregivers face a shorter lifespan, but it’s actually quite the opposite. In fact, despite the high rate of stress and illness, research tells us that family caregivers actually live longer than non-caregivers. 


Introducing, Butterfly. A totally new kind of discreet protection for ABL.
Accidental Bowl Leakage, or ABL, is also often referred to as fecal incontinence. It is a condition where solid or liquid stool, or mucus, is accidentally passed from the rectum. In other words, the bowel accidentally leaks. 

ABL is both embarrassing and inconvenient. However, it is not uncommon. It affects both men and women. In fact, one in five women over the age of forty experience some level of ABL, although most only experience small or moderate leakage. 

Many factors can lead to ABL or contribute to it. For women, one of the leading factors is childbirth. Often, muscles are torn, and damage to the bowel occurs while giving birth. However, childbirth is not the only cause, nor the greatest risk factor. Medical conditions including chronic diarrhea and Irritable Bowel Syndrome are the most common causes leading to ABL.

Why Consider a Monitoring System For the Elderly

Consider a monitoring system for the elderly. 
Anyone who is a caregiver for a senior needs to be aware of the hazards that face seniors in their own home, and be able to find solutions to help minimize those hazards. You may be surprised to learn falls are the leading cause of accidents and serious injury in the homes of the elderly. Not only does a fall jeopardize the health of the senior, there are significant costs involved as well. Knowing the facts about falls can be the first step in helping the senior in your life become safer at home. 

Thresholds, Stairs and Memory Loss

Guest post by Elaine M. Decker, social artist and columnist

If you’re the caregiver for a senior loved one, you’ve probably noticed that memory loss is becoming a problem. They’ll frequently forget where they’re headed when they go from one room to another. Retirees face the same issue. You might think this is because retirees and seniors spend more time in their homes. Turns out, there’s a scientific reason for this memory gap.

The University of Notre Dame published a study some years ago that has only now come to my attention. The author is Professor Gabriel Radvansky, and his ND webpage tells us his research “is aimed at understanding… how younger and older adults differ on their use of mental models.” I’m sure this is a fascinating field, but I’m mostly interested in his paper: “Walking through doorways causes forgetting.”

Strengthening Pelvic Muscles with Kegel Exercises

Improve stress incontinence by doing Kegel exercises. 
Many women feel overwhelmed when they are first diagnosed with incontinence. They feel that this condition will only limit them in their daily lives and that there is nothing that can be done to help them. This is not true. It is important if you are a woman dealing with stress incontinence, or a caregiver for a woman with stress incontinence, that you understand that there are ways that you can both manage and improve the problem. One of the most often overlooked methods of improving stress incontinence is doing Kegel exercises. 

Night Time Elderly Care: What Caregivers Should Know

Be aware of what the problems and hazards are at night. 

There is no denying the job of caregivers for an elderly loved one can be taxing and at times overwhelming. Unfortunately, many times the challenges that are a part of taking care of a senior are magnified at night. Many caregivers make the mistake of thinking once the senior in their care is in bed they can let down their guard. The reality is many problems that occur with seniors happen at night. The best strategy for any caregiver is to be aware of what the problems and hazards are at night and prepare to deal with them. 

Does Your Mom or Dad Need Help?

Look for "red flags" that indicate the senior may need help.
One of the biggest challenges in aging is maintaining independence. Whether you are a senior, or the family member or caregiver for a senior, it can often be a delicate balancing act on how to help your senior maintain their independence. This is often compounded by the fact that many seniors want to age in their home. Because of their fear of being “placed in a home or care center” many seniors may hide their inability to care for themselves from family members. However, it is crucial that family members are aware of the real situation when it comes to the seniors in their lives and take the appropriate steps so that both the health and the safety of the senior can be maintained.