Elderly Caregiving. Choices & Challenges.

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Guest Post By Edward Francis and Foresthc.com

Medical advances and healthier lifestyles are major contributors to the increase in lifespan that many people now enjoy. This is combining with people generally having a baby later in life and creating a ‘sandwich’ generation. These are people who need to provide care for elderly parents whilst looking after their own children.

This can be an incredibly difficult and demanding task, and can be made even worse if the primary caregiver also needs to work themselves. With an increasing amount of older people, it is more and more likely that you will need to provide care for a relative at some point.

Most of us will become a caregiver

Anyone who provides physical and emotional support to someone else on an unpaid basis is a caregiver. The role can often start as a part time concern and then develop into a full time live-in role as the condition worsens. The type and amount of care are governed by the type of illness and the responsibility can be shared to make the role easier. It is common for the caregiver to be family members.

7 Actions Best in Class Employers Take To Assist Employees Who Are Family Caregivers

7 Actions working family caregivers can take. 
Guest Post provided by The Caregiver Space

By the numbers… working family caregivers:
  • 60% of family caregivers work full- or part-time. 
  • 35% of caregivers are between 18 and 49. It’s not just older workers who are providing unpaid care for family and friends.
  • 16% of all adults provided some level of unpaid care for an elderly relative this year. 14% of Americans in their 40s and 50s are juggling their careers along with caring for a parent. 
The problem is only going to become more pervasive, as the number of older Americans will more than double in the next 20 years. In addition, one in 4 working caregivers have contemplated changing jobs because of their caregiving responsibilities. They’ve cut their hours, avoided business trips, and even turned down job promotions. In the end, 16% quit their jobs and another 13% retire early.

Here are the 7 actions:

Health insurance

Nearly all employers take co-pays into consideration when choosing health insurance policies to offer their employees. Fewer consider whether or not insurance coverage provides adult day care and respite care. Some policies allow employees to add an adult family member to the policy and provide geriatric care management support. Caregivers can benefit from access to counseling and therapy to deal with stress and grief. Take a look at your current health insurance coverage options to see what’s there to support caregivers – and consider adding to it.

Additional paid time off

Five sick days is fine for a healthy worker, but those days quickly vanish for caregivers. Removing the distinction between vacation and sick days to provide a general block of paid time off (PTO) provides additional flexibility. Providing additional paid time off will allow caregivers to take care of their own health.

Flexible schedule

Giving your workers a flexible schedule is the biggest – and easiest – thing you can do to help working caregivers. Allowing your workers to adjust their hours, compress their work schedule, or work part-time temporary could very well save a staff member from being forced to quit. Allowing someone an exemption to mandatory overtime or providing them enough advance notice so they can make arrangements is also a huge help. These are steps that have been shown to improve employee satisfaction for all workers, not just family caregivers.

Remote working

Being away from home can be stressful for caregivers, especially for those with a significant commute. Working from home allows caregivers to provide assistance throughout the day while still being productive employees. Allowing caregivers to work from home allows them the peace of mind of knowing they’re there to handle anything that may come up.

Unpaid leave

Many caregivers are afraid that taking unpaid time off will jeopardize their jobs. In the US, companies with 50 or more employees are bound by the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), but some employees fear that taking leave will stall their career or even put their future in jeopardy.

Access to experts

Access to experts through an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) can be a huge perk. Some workplaces offer seminars and assistance filling out paperwork for FMLA, retirement planning, long-term care, living wills, estate planning, and other legal services. Others even provide courses on coping with the stress of informal caregiving and the resources available.


Regardless of our titles, we’re all people. Compassion can go a long way toward fostering mutual respect. Company-wide training for supervisors can help them understand and prevent potential conflicts. Work with your employees and HR to find ways that caregivers can take personal calls, attend doctor’s appointments, and manage stress while keeping up with work. Removing the stigma from working from home, setting a flexible schedule, and utilizing company-sponsored counseling will make for a happier, more productive workforce.

Other resources like The CareGiver Partnership can conveniently ship home health care supplies directly to the home of a loved one Learn more.

Further Reading: 

Caregiving Through the Ages and What the Future Holds
Help support this ad free blog by answering several questions about caregiving here. It will take just two minutes. 

Call us. We're here to help.
About The CareGiver Partnership. The CareGiver Partnership helps caregivers and their loved ones with answers to their caregiving questions, including information about home health care products and supplies, from our Wisconsin-based team of Product Specialists who are all current or former caregivers. The company’s Web site provides the largest online library of resources on subjects most important to caregivers — from arthritis to assisted living, and Parkinson’s to prostate cancer — as well as access to more than 3,000 home care products for incontinence, skin care, mobility, home safety and daily living aids. The CareGiver Partnership was founded in 2004 by Lynn Wilson of Neenah, Wisc. Visit http://www.caregiverpartnership.com to learn more or call 1-800-985-1353.

The Sandwich Generation

Guest Post by Benjamin Lamm, communication specialist and blogger 

Recently, I was introduced to the concept of the “Sandwich Generation”, as detailed by elder care authority Carol Abaya. Abaya divides the sandwich generation into the following three groups:

  • Traditional: Those people sandwiched between their children and elderly parents who need care.
  • Club Sandwich: Those in their 50s or 60s who are sandwiched between elderly parents above them, and adult children and/or grandchildren below them. There is also a small percent of younger people in their 30s and 40s, with parents, grandparents and young children to care for.
  • Open Faced: Everyone else involved in elder care.

Samples of Attends Incontinence Products- Try Before You Buy

Using Attends may be the right choice for your incontinence supplies.
How do you know which Attends incontinence product is best for you?

When Beth was first diagnosed with urinary incontinence she was overwhelmed by all of the decisions that needed to be made. While her doctor could guide her through treatment options she wondered how she could manage her incontinence and keep up with her daily activities. She knew choosing the right incontinence product would be crucial to helping her do this but when she saw all of the options she didn’t know where to begin! There seemed to be so many choices and she simply couldn’t afford to waste her money on incontinence supplies which wouldn’t help her with her specific needs. She wondered how she could possibly find the right incontinence products.

Beth’s struggle to find the right incontinence products is not unique. Consumers are very confused about which incontinence products will work best for them or a loved one. In a recent study, Kimberly-Clark, makers of Depend and Poise brands, discovered those buying incontinence products for the first time, waste $130 on average in trial and error mode. That’s about 10 bags of products which can’t be returned, once opened. This means consumers are often stuck with an incontinence product that doesn’t provide them with the highest levels of protection against leakage and accidents.

5 Great Gift Ideas for Moms in Assisted Living

Give the gift that helps Mom stay active, independent and healthy.
Mother’s Day is going to be here soon, so it’s time to think about how to make her day special. For moms in an assisted living environment, there may be special considerations and challenges, but there are gift options out there that can help. 

Although assisted living spaces are designed to accommodate mobility issues, they can’t account for every need. This May, give a gift that helps Mom stay active, independent and healthy.

Incontinence Products for the 5 Million Men With Incontinence. Briefs, Boxers, Guards, Shields and More

You are not alone. 
Incontinence… Its Not Just a ‘Women Thing’ 

When people think about incontinence they assume this is a “women's issue”. While the majority of people who experience incontinence are female this doesn’t mean men are exempt. Approximately 5 million American men are dealing with some form of incontinence. Many men find after prostate surgery they are experiencing incontinence. In addition, some men find they must deal with incontinence as a side effect from neurological diseases or spinal or head injury. Other men find the aging process or the medications they are taking can bring on incontinence symptoms. A small minority of men who are diagnosed do not have a clear cut reason as to why they are experiencing symptoms. However, if you are a man who is experiencing incontinence it is important to know you are not alone.

Not too long ago, both men and women had little to choose from when it came to incontinence products. Their choices were limited to one size fits all, unisex adult diapers. Today, manufacturers of incontinence supplies understand men have very different needs than women when it comes to incontinence products. To meet these needs a number of brands now offer specific incontinence products for men. This allows men who are looking for effective ways to manage their incontinence to find the right supplies to meet their needs. Here is a brief overview of the available incontinence supplies for men-

Do You Know How Your Mom's Being Treated? Don't Worry, We'll Let You Know

Let Penrose Senior Care Auditors
become your 'peace of mind partner'.
When my Mom suddenly couldn’t live on her own anymore I worried what I could do to help her? My own job had me traveling several days out of the month so bringing her to live with me just wasn’t an option. I worried if she was left alone that she could possibly fall and not even be found for days. She was also struggling to feed herself and I often worried about her diet and nutrition. 

However, after reading numerous stories about elder abuse and senior neglect in care centers, I was afraid to place her in an assisted living facility. I felt overwhelmed and alone until I discovered I didn’t have to be there everyday to in order to make sure Mom was doing alright. A new type of service called senior care auditing is developing around the country to precisely help alleviate concerns like mine. Apparently, there are many others like me in the same situation. They have become my eyes and ears when I’m not able to be there. They have become my ‘peace of mind partner’ and watch over the people who provide care to my mother. Their name is Penrose Senior Care Auditors.

Free Home Delivery Service of Incontinence Supplies

Consider free home delivery service of incontinence products.
Going to the store-again

Sara was exasperated to find she was once again out of her incontinence product. This meant getting in the car and making the 20 minute drive to the store in order to stock back up. She wondered if her incontinence supplies would even be stock or if she would have to choose something else to just get by.  Worse yet, she wondered who she would meet there with the tell tale incontinence supplies in her basket. Managing incontinence was a private matter to her and she didn’t want her neighbors knowing her business. She felt overwhelmed and wondered why there wasn’t an easier solution to this problem. If somehow she could find the right incontinence product, have it delivered discreetly to her home, and never run out it would make managing her incontinence so much easier.

With over 25 million Americans dealing with some form of incontinence Sara was not alone in her wishes. Many people find it difficult to leave their home to buy the needed incontinence supplies or don’t want to have to deal with the time, travel and hassle which can be involved. The answer to this problem can be home delivery. With home delivery there is no need to have to worry about the time, fear of embarrassment or any other factor involved in having to leave home and shop for incontinence products. Here are some of the reasons you should consider free home delivery service of incontinence supplies

How to Regain Your Confidence-- With Incontinence Products

Regain your confidence with incontinence products. 
Feeling Unsure About It All - Especially Away From Home

Julie was a very confident woman with an important and fast paced career. She had always taken on her life with confidence and determination. However, when she began to experience incontinence symptoms, she felt her confidence slipping away as she worried about leakage and accidents at work and other places outside of her home. She was unsure as to how she could possibly manage her incontinence and continuing working and doing all the things she loved. It was only when she found some information about how to effectively manage her incontinence was she able to return to the vibrant and confident woman she normally was.

Julie’s experience is not uncommon as many people report feeling less confident after experiencing incontinence symptoms. This problem can be isolating despite the fact there are millions of Americans who are dealing with and successfully managing their incontinence. The key to knowing what to do is to educate yourself about incontinence and the products which can help. This way you can find the right ones that will work for you. Here is what you need to know about how to regain your confidence with incontinence products.

Understanding Incontinence Products and Supplies

An incontinence diagnosis doesn't have to be overwhelming.
It Can Be Confusing-but it doesn’t have to be

Many people report when they are first diagnosed with incontinence they feel overwhelmed by many things. Diagnosis, treatment, and even management strategies can seem confusing and frustrating. However, when you are able to understand how incontinence products can help you to effectively manage your incontinence then you can begin to take control of this issue and successfully manage it. Today, there have never been as many options when it comes to incontinence supplies. While this is certainly good it can also be confusing. Understanding what incontinence products are and what they can and can’t do, can help you to manage your incontinence or that of someone in your care. Here is what you need to know about understanding incontinence products.

Incontinence at Work: Tips for Long Meetings and Business Lunches

4 tips for managing incontinence at work. 
The Longest Day...

Julie knew she had a long day ahead of her at work. Long meetings and then a business lunch with important clients. However, it wasn’t preparing for the meetings or even impressing her clients at lunch that worried her, it was how to manage her urinary incontinence. She was worried with such a busy day and sitting in long meetings and possibly a long lunch she wouldn’t be able to manage her urinary incontinence and she could end up embarrassing herself and even putting her job at risk! However, with a little research Julie was able to find the tips which helped her to sail through her day without missing a beat while impressing her clients and getting the deal!

When many people think about incontinence they assume this is only an issue for the elderly, ill and bedridden. However, you may be surprised to learn with nearly 25 million Americans experiencing some form of incontinence a majority of them are working, active and fairly young. This means if you are one of these working adults who must manage incontinence then it is crucial to gain some tips to help you do so. Here are 4 tips for long meetings and business lunches-

Urinary Incontinence in Women: You May Never Need to Wear Bladder Control Pads Again

Effectively manage your urinary incontinence. 
New Products Prevent Rather Than Absorb Leakage

There are a number of new products on the market, being tested in small cities or in clinical studies. These products aim to prevent rather than absorb leakage. Read about the future...

Further Reading

Poise Impressa bladder supports

Apex - stops bladder leakage

Pelviva Pelpon - exerciser for the bladder floor to help stop bladder leaks

Solace bladder control system clinical study - no more pads needed

Feeling overwhelmed and alone

When Marsha first began experiencing urinary incontinence she was shocked and embarrassed. Her symptoms seem to appear almost overnight and she wasn’t sure what she should do about them. A million questions ran through her mind. Could she keep working? Would she be able to remain active and take part in activities she liked? Would she have to change the clothes she wore? These questions and so many more kept Marsha feeling isolated and alone. However, when she ran across an article about managing urinary incontinence she began to see this was something she could deal with and still live her life to the fullest.

Top 10 Ways Seniors Can Stay Sharp

The R.O.S. Legacy Bundle is a multi-functional
modular activity set.
Need ideas for elderly games that combine fun and function? Here’s a great place to start!

As important as it is for people of all ages to keep learning and exercising their brains, it’s crucial for seniors who want to stay sharp, says Lynn Wilson, founder of The CareGiver Partnership, a national online retailer of incontinence products and other home health care supplies.

“From a modular activity set designed to stimulate memory and coordination, to fun family games anyone can play anywhere, there are endless ways to stay mentally active,” says Wilson. “Try one of more activities from this list or use the ideas to inspire your own games.”

95% of Nursing Home Residents Are Being Neglected

Don't let your senior loved one be a statistic. 
Neglect & Abuse

Statistics show 95% of nursing home residents report either senior neglect or abuse. This statistics is both overwhelming and frightening for those family members who cannot care for an elderly loved one and must turn to a long term care facility for help. Family members worry if they can’t be there daily to check on their loved one then the worst might happen. This fear often keeps families from making a needed decision which provides their loved one with the care they truly need. However, today there is no reason for this fear. Senior care auditing can provide a way for you to know if your loved is being taken care and is receiving the services which you paid for.

Penrose Senior Care AuditorsⓇ are a pioneer in this area of senior care. They will make sure your loved one is being taken care and the facility they are living in has the right equipment and staff to provide this care. Penrose Senior Care Auditors have created the auditors, audit and process which will allow you to have the peace of mind you need. By using a Penrose Senior Care Auditors, you can make sure your elderly loved one is being taken care of in the way you want. There are several reasons why you should consider using Penrose Senior Care Auditors. Here are 3 of them-

Adult Incontinence Pads and Boosters

Incontinence isn't just an elderly issue.
When You Need A Little Help

Sarah was shocked when she began having some light urine leakage shortly after her 50th birthday. Previously she hadn’t noticed any sort of incontinence happening but now she found she was having to change her undergarments 2-3 times a day, sometimes more in order to stay dry. While her leakage was annoying it was only minor so Sarah didn’t feel she needed to go to using a full incontinence undergarment. After doing some research she found out about urinary incontinence products included incontinence pads which she could use to stay dry. These incontinence pads fit securely and quickly wicked away moisture so both Sarah and her clothes stayed dry and comfortable.

When people think about incontinence they assume those who must deal with this issue are elderly, ill and even bedridden. The reality is individuals like Sarah find they must deal with light incontinence while still maintaining a job, social life and other activities. Many women like Sarah find years after pregnancy and childbirth, coupled with the hormonal changes that menopause can bring mean they can have incontinence issues which need to be managed. Using an incontinence pad can be an effective way to do just that. Here is what you need to know about adult incontinence pads and boosters. 

Why Do Sales of Depend Incontinence Products Keep Growing?

Depend offers a full line of quality incontinence products.
Trust, confidence and continual innovation

10,000 boomers turn 65 years old everyday and this will continue for the next 20 years! Because of the incidence of incontinence as we age this will continue to drive the demand for incontinence products.

Kimberly-Clark, makers of Depend incontinence supplies, are always looking to improve the quality and reliability of their incontinence products. In addition, they understand the need for incontinence supplies goes beyond incontinence undergarments. They recently introduced seat and bed protectors. This allows consumers to purchase a wide range of incontinence products to meet all their individual needs.

Device to Stop Bladder Leakage, Eliminating the Need for Women to Wear Pads

The product is inserted in the vagina to help train the pelvic floor
Apex Device to stop bladder leakage received FDA Clearance for sale over-the-counter, without a prescription–eliminating the need for women to buy pads.

The Apex Device strengthens the pelvic floor and decreases the involuntary loss of urine when laughing, coughing,sneezing or exercising for the millions of women living with Stress Urinary Incontinence

44% of Nursing Home Residents Have Been Abused

Penrose Senior Care Auditors is the solution to your worry.
56% is not good enough!

One of the main fears family members have when they are considering a nursing home for a loved one is whether or not they will receive quality of care. Statistics are grim when it comes to senior neglect and senior abuse. Studies show that up to 44% of nursing home residents report being abused. This only serves to spark families fears when a nursing home becomes the only option for their family member. The reality of 2 income families and large geographical distances between family members often leaves families frustrated and overwhelmed when considering a nursing home. They worry if they can’t be there daily then their family members won’t receive the care they need and deserve.

5 Innovations to Help You stay in Your Home

Aging in Place is an important,
emerging trend.
Builders, manufacturers and service providers are catering to the growing number of seniors who want to age in place in their own homes. 

Aging in place — the preferred lifestyle for older adults — requires tools and support that allow seniors to live in their own homes safely and independently. This concept is the foundation of The CareGiver Partnership.

According to a recent national survey, 85 percent of retirees prefer to receive extended care in their own homes if they ever need it. Many retirees have a lot of emotional value in their home, have family and friends who live nearby, don’t want to lose their independence and love their communities, according to a Feb. 26 USA TODAY article. The study, sponsored by Merrill Lynch in partnership with Age Wave, surveyed 3,600 respondents from all social and economic groups.

With 10,000 baby boomers turning 65 every day and a shortage of affordable long-term care facilities and trained caregivers, aging in place is an important and emerging trend. Builders, manufacturers, and service providers are adapting to this growing need for tools that allow seniors to safely and affordably remain in their homes as long as possible.

What Would You Do If Both Parents Were Diagnosed with Alzheimer's?

Jean Lee looks for sunshine streaming
through the clouds of Alzheimer's.
In Alzheimer’s Daughter readers journey with the author from her first suspicions that something is awry to a decade later as she is honored to hold Ed and Ibby’s hands as they draw their last breaths.

At the time of their diagnosis, Ed Church struggles to his feet, yelling, “How dare you use the A. word with me,” while Ibby wags her finger at the doctor scolding, “Shame on you.” They’d defend each other, Ibby by asserting, “We’re not leaving our home,” and Ed reassuring, “We’re just fine.” Ed states, “I’m an excellent driver, I’ve never had an accident.” When their daughter finds dings in Ed’s car, he dismisses, “Someone must have hit me.

At dinnertime Ibby makes excuses, “Let’s eat out. The stove won’t work.”

After moving them to assisted living, convinced they are on a second honeymoon, they break the news, “We’ve decided not to have more children.”

In the late stages, they shake their daughter’s hand, inquiring, “Now, who are you?”

Paula Takes The Weekend On with Depend Incontinence Products

Depend Silhouettes could help you take on
your busy life with comfort and confidence. 
Paula’s Super Busy Life

Paula often wondered how she could possibly manage the schedules and needs of 4 kids, while working part-time and taking care of her home. When she was diagnosed with stress urinary incontinence her feelings of being overwhelmed only got worse. She wondered how she could even leave her house when she was always worried about leakage and accidents. However, she didn’t want to miss any of her kids soccer games, dance recitals or other weekend activities. It was only when she did some research that she found the right incontinence product to meet her needs and allow her to take on the weekend(and every other day) with comfort and confidence!
After doing some research and sampling a few different types of incontinence supplies, Paula found Depend Silhouettes were the right choice for her because of their feminine shape and discreetness. She could use this incontinence product for women and still maintain her busy schedule without having to slow down to manage her stress urinary incontinence. There are many different reasons Depend underwear for women could be right for you or someone in your care, here are 3 of them. 

I Was Shocked When I Learned What My Mom's Caretaker Had Been Doing

Avoid a caregiver nightmare with Penrose Senior Care Auditors.
A nightmare for Mom and Me

It was one of the most difficult decisions I had ever made when I realized my Mom could not continue to live on her own. Not only was she not eating, but her mobility was steadily decreasing making her at risk for a fall. I worried she might fall and it could be hours if not days before someone found her. However, when my family and I researched nursing homes in her area we found one which seemed reputable and would provide the care she deserved. You can imagine my shock a few weeks later when I went to visit and found my Mom was eating less, the room she was in was a complete mess and worse yet, she looked uncared for and neglected. I wondered how we could have avoided this situation.

The answer to avoiding this situation lies with senior care auditing. Penrose Senior Care Auditors provides senior care auditors who will go to where your loved one is living and make an evaluation on how they are doing. They use a comprehensive 7-Factor AuditⓇ which covers over 150 points including but not limited to: how well the facility is maintained to how many staff are available and responsive to give the needed care. There are many different reasons to use Penrose Senior Care Auditors. Here are 3 of them:

Win a FREE Prize Package from Wellness, Heaven Scent and The CareGiver Partnership

Win a FREE Prize Package!
To help those with incontinence confidently get on with life, we’re giving away an entire case of super-absorbent Wellness Briefs and eight packs of Heaven Scent hygiene bags.

Each month, we highlight a family caregiver solution that one lucky participant wins — with no purchase necessary and no strings attached! Prizes are products and services that help seniors live more independently and gracefully in their homes.

This month, readers can enter for a chance to win both these prizes:

  • One case of Wellness Brief Superio Signature Series or pull-on Absorbent Underwear. Developed using the same principles as the maximum absorbency garments used by NASA, cost-effective Wellness products can be worn for eight hours, making them perfect for travel and overnight use. Wellness Brief Superio Signature Series absorbs up to 100 fl. oz.! Pull-on disposable underwear fit like regular underwear for discreet protection from bladder leaks. This prize is valued at up to $84.99.
  • Eight packs of versatile Heaven Scent hygiene bags. Powder-scented, opaque bags mask unpleasant odors, making them perfect for disposing of incontinence or feminine hygiene products, pet pick-up, baby diapers and more. Winner receives eight packs, each with 50 bags, together valued at more than $103.
Tell us why this prize package would be useful to you or a loved one, and you’ll have a chance to win it! Simply e-mail info@caregiverpartnership.com or snail-mail a short statement. We will accept entries for this prize through April 30, 2015, and will notify the drawing winner the first week of May. Visit the “Helping You Get On With Life” sweepstakes page for the mailing address and other details.

Help support this ad free blog by answering several questions about caregiving here. It will take just two minutes. 

Call us. We're here to help.
About The CareGiver Partnership. The CareGiver Partnership helps caregivers and their loved ones with answers to their caregiving questions, including information about home health care products and supplies, from our Wisconsin-based team of Product Specialists who are all current or former caregivers. The company’s Web site provides the largest online library of resources on subjects most important to caregivers — from arthritis to assisted living, and Parkinson’s to prostate cancer — as well as access to more than 3,000 home care products for incontinence, skin care, mobility, home safety and daily living aids. The CareGiver Partnership was founded in 2004 by Lynn Wilson of Neenah, Wisc. Visit http://www.caregiverpartnership.com to learn more or call 1-800-985-1353.