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All Posts in Category: Health Basics


Dealing with Dementia and Alzheimer’s

At A to Z Home Health Care we encourage the use of music to encourage social interaction, brain stimulation, communication and verbal expression. When we make eye contact, we do get that eye to eye contact; music stimulates the brain and therefore creates positive feedback.

It is a known fact that music will bring that smile, that dance step, the “bopping” of the head, singing and various other engaged signs to the population with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Music has that power of healing, for those from the era of Count Basie, Louis Armstrong, Frank Sinatra and many more artists, the connection is incredible. As one’s mind deteriorates, music therapy brings comfort to those struggling with these diseases.

A to Z Home Health Care offers the most reliable home non-medical companions and senior care services in Los Angeles and surrounding areas. Our Home Care professionals provide hands-on care at all times; companions, home health aides and other skilled nursing services.

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Hand Washing Techniques

Keeping hands clean prevents illness at home, at school and at work. Hand hygiene practices are key prevention tools for everyone. To protect yourself from germs, thoroughly wash your hands.

Some viruses can live up to two hours or longer on surfaces like doorknobs, desks and tables. By frequently washing your hands, you get rid of germs that you have picked up from other people, surfaces or animals.

How should I wash my hands?

Wet your hands, apply solid (bar) soap or liquid. If using a bar of soap, be sure to place it on a rack and allow it to drain after use.
• Rub your hands vigorously together and scrub all surfaces of hands and wrists.
• Continue for 20 seconds, or about the time it takes to sing the “Happy Birthday” song twice.
• Rinse well and dry your hands.

The use of gloves does not eliminate the need for hand hygiene.

According to the Hand Hygiene Resource Center, nurses, doctors and other healthcare workers can contaminate their hands by doing simple tasks, including:

Taking a patient’s blood pressure or pulse
Assisting patients with mobility
Touching the patient’s gown or bed sheets
Touching equipment, including bedside rails, over-bed tables, IV pumps

So when should we wash our hands?

Your hands are visibly soiled (dirty)
Hands are visibly contaminated with blood or body fluids
Before eating
After using the restroom

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Senior Care – Tips for Improving Dental Health

As a person reaches their senior years, taking care of their aging teeth may become a daily challenge. Many older adults experience the loss of their natural teeth simply for the reason that they had lost the ability to take care of them properly. There are factors associated with age that make it increasingly difficult to do all the hygiene steps that are required for good dental health.

Age related difficulties in caring for teeth

Some of the main factors that make it hard for a senior to care for their own teeth are:

Arthritis and other similar conditions cause limited dexterity. This may hinder the aging adult’s ability to clean her own gums and teeth properly with a toothbrush.
Memory lapses associated with age, mild dementia or even Alzheimer’s disease may cause some people to simply forget about dental care, even if they had always been really good at establishing oral hygiene habits in the past.
When elderly people lose their natural teeth and are fitted with dentures in old age, sometimes the proper cleaning procedures may be neglected. This could be due to forgetting or just from inexperience.

Oral health for seniors

Your loved one’s senior care service provider can be a big help in assisting your elderly family member to take good care of her teeth and gums, regardless of whether she has her natural teeth or wears dentures. The caregiver can not only give reminders and encouragement to clean teeth after each meal, she can also assist in the oral hygiene.

Here are some tips that may be helpful:

Try using an electric toothbrush. This makes brushing a lot easier for people who have limited dexterity with their hands and fingers. The electric brush is great for removing plaque and also cleans and stimulates the gums.
For seniors with severe arthritis or finger immobility, try putting something big and easy to grasp on the handle of the electric toothbrush, for example a bicycle handle grip.
Always use only the recommended cleaners for dentures. Other household cleaners are too harsh and may irritate the mouth of the denture wearer.
Your loved one’s senior care service provider will be trained in helping with the oral health of someone with Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease etc.

It is important to note and report to the elderly adult’s doctor any changes in health, including oral health. Sometimes it could be a side effect of medication or a symptom of an illness, so don’t let oral health go unchecked.

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