5 Ways To Determine Your Aging Loved Ones’ Living Status

Written by Gina Saxton, RN

5 Ways To Determine Your Aging Loved Ones’ Living Status Taking Notice During Family Holiday Gatherings Can Prevent a Crisis Later On By Gina Saxton, RN

We live in a very mobile society where families don’t always live inrepparttar same town or even state for that matter. Unlikerepparttar 132434 “old days”, entire families throughout America don’t haverepparttar 132435 opportunity to come together every week for a Saturday BBQ or Sunday dinner. Which is whyrepparttar 132436 upcoming holiday season is such a busy travel time - families still cherish togetherness andrepparttar 132437 holiday season is oftenrepparttar 132438 only time ofrepparttar 132439 year they can do so.

It is not uncommon forrepparttar 132440 adult children of seniors to have some concerns about how their parents are doing. This year while you’re enjoyingrepparttar 132441 companionship of your family and catching up on lost time, make good use of your visit to review your aging parents’ and loved ones’ living status.

Many holiday traditions tempt your five senses. These five senses can also be used to evaluaterepparttar 132442 status of elderly family members. Families often overlook a variety of warning signs such as forgetfulness, lack of house cleaning or a decrease in physical appearance by writing them off to “old age”. Below is a checklist using each of your five senses that lists key indicators or warning signs to help determine if your family members are in need of additional care or assistance:

SIGHT - Looking atrepparttar 132443 senior’s appearance can be a sign that they are being limited either physically or mentally from completing otherwise normal daily tasks. Are they wearing clothing with food stains? Is their hair completely combed?

Do their teeth appear clean?

Does she continue to wear makeup?

How do their shoes look?

Isrepparttar 132444 house orderly and clean?

SOUND – Listening to what and how seniors speak can tell you a lot about their current mental status. Don’t assume that “old age” is causing these problems; doing so can sometimes cause their mental state to decrease further. Do they call you by name?

Are they speaking normally?

Are they up onrepparttar 132445 news?

Have they continued their outside activities?

Do they have future plans or goals?

If not, could they be depressed?

SMELL – Using your nose as an indicator can help you determine if your family member is bathing properly, participating in otherwise normal activities (cleaning their house), or whether or not they are eating regularly (if they have spoiled food in their kitchen).

Does their living environment possess any unpleasant odors?

Doesrepparttar 132446 refrigerator or cupboards smell?

Arerepparttar 132447 plants thriving?

Is there an unusual amount of garbage, clutter, dust, or dirt?

TASTE – Tasting their food and sorting through their medications can help you determine if they are eating healthy or even worse, taking expired medicine.

Do they have fresh and stocked pantry items?

Look atrepparttar 132448 expiration dates. How doesrepparttar 132449 food taste?

Doesrepparttar 132450 person appear to move aroundrepparttar 132451 kitchen safely?

Are there many different prescriptions?

Dorepparttar 132452 medications come from different doctors or pharmacies?

What aboutrepparttar 132453 expiration dates onrepparttar 132454 medications?

TOUCH – A simple hug could tell you that your family member is fragile, losing weight and putting him or herself in jeopardy of injury or even malnourishment from not eating properly.

Do they appear healthy?

Touch their skin - is it soft, supple and isrepparttar 132455 color normal?

Do they have unusual tearing or bruising ofrepparttar 132456 skin?

Are they losing weight?

How are their sight, hearing and taste? If you sense a problem based onrepparttar 132457 above indictors, you and other family members should waste no time in takingrepparttar 132458 appropriate next steps. As difficult asrepparttar 132459 process might be, keep reminding yourself that by being proactive, as a result of your observations, you will not only provide safety for your family member, but will also keep them happy and healthy for years to come.

The Human-Animal Connection: A Guide for Non-Pet Owners

Written by M.L. Scott

While images of agitated activists hurling paint at fur-clad celebrities may not present animal lovers in their best light,repparttar relationship between humans and animals has many fascinating aspects that even non-pet owners may find intriguing. More than little fur balls requiring intermittent petting; animals make numerous contributions torepparttar 132432 human world and reveal compelling insights about our humanity. Enlightening and sometimes disturbing,repparttar 132433 human-animal connection has significance that reaches far beyondrepparttar 132434 kennel torepparttar 132435 realm ofrepparttar 132436 psychiatric community, Congress and evenrepparttar 132437 FBI.

Though many are familiar withrepparttar 132438 roles of guide dogs, assistance animals enrich human lives in ways that almost defy imagination. Their contributions are vast and varied. Therapy animals have been documented as lowering blood pressure, anxiety and distress in humans. They have frequently been used in hospitals, nursing homes, even mental institutions. They are also used in disaster situations. Inrepparttar 132439 September 11 tragedy, many victims and rescue workers atrepparttar 132440 World Trade Center found comfort and solace in therapy dogs that were sometimes able to connect with humans more directly than human counselors. The duties they performed at Ground Zero put a new perspective on this type of therapy.

Such animals work with abused and traumatized children or helprepparttar 132441 disabled learn motor skills everyday. Sometimesrepparttar 132442 therapy is induced byrepparttar 132443 simple petting or companionship that an animal can offer, but other forms are more specific. Equitherapy is a form of therapy assisted by horses that means “treatment withrepparttar 132444 help of a horse.” In equitherapy,repparttar 132445 horse helpsrepparttar 132446 rider rather thanrepparttar 132447 traditional activity in whichrepparttar 132448 rider controlsrepparttar 132449 movements ofrepparttar 132450 horse. The freedom of being on a horse can simply help by inspiring confidence withrepparttar 132451 control such movement can induce. The rhythmic and repetitive motion of a horse’s gait provides other sensory benefits. The Therapeutic Riding Center of Israel has an indoor riding arena of 2000 square meters and a professional staff that includes physiotherapists and certified, experienced riding instructors. Professional doctors, psychologists, physiotherapists, and educational advisors superviserepparttar 132452 staff. More information on their program can be found at http://www.trci.org.il. Even capuchin monkeys have been trained to assist quadriplegic individuals. Quadriplegics have limited or no control over their arms and legs. These monkeys not only help such individuals relieverepparttar 132453 loneliness such a predicament can produce, but they can perform simple tasks such as turning on and off lights or getting something to eat. Helping Hands is an incredible organization at http://www.helpinghandsmonkeys.org/ which charges no fees for performing such services. On a darker note, while one would be foolish to makerepparttar 132454 claim that a dislike of animals is a reflection of a criminal mind, psychologists have noted a disturbing link between animal cruelty and violence against humans. In fact,repparttar 132455 standard diagnostic and treatment manual for psychiatric and emotional disorders used by psychiatrists and psychologists lists cruelty to animals as a diagnostic criterion for conduct disorders. A recent scientific study actually documentsrepparttar 132456 link between animal cruelty and human violence and concludes that offenders of violent crimes are significantly more likely to have abused pets and stray animals in their childhood than non-violent criminals. University of South Florida professor Kathleen Heide and animal welfare expert Linda Merz-Perez came to this conclusion after an examination of a random sample of approximately 100 male violent and non-violent inmates at a maximum-security facility.

Certainly, “animal abuse” and “cruelty” are open to interpretation. They may include behaviors such as neglect, intentional abuse, torture or killing. Instances of neglect are not always a symptom of a personality disorder and may even occur unintentionally. Education is a practical means of addressing some instances of neglect. In fact, that is one ofrepparttar 132457 purposes of such sites as Adoring Pets at www.AdoringPets.com. By familiarizingrepparttar 132458 public withrepparttar 132459 proper care of animals and their contributions, Adoring Pets hopes not only to educate people aboutrepparttar 132460 ways in which they can benefit animals, but about how animals benefit humans every day.

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