15 day self care challenge

Licensed professionals and others alike will often mention the term “self care.” What we don’t always realize is how important self care is to our lives. We brush it off as nonsense, or too time consuming. The truth is, we need self care in order to be the best version of ourselves.

Let us present to you a 15 day self care challenge. All of these activities are FREE and attainable if effort is put forth. Try and tackle 1 item each day (in no particular order) and explore how you feel before, during, and after.

  1. Make a cup of coffee, tea, or hot chocolate and relax while drinking it.
  2. Take a bath (bubbles are encouraged for an enhanced atmosphere!)
  3. Pray
  4. Take a walk
  5. Listen to the radio
  6. Call a friend or family member to say hello 
  7. Draw a picture or color in a coloring book
  8. Take 10 minutes to stretch your body
  9. Meditate
  10. Write a poem
  11. Do a word search or crossword puzzle
  12. Read a book or a magazine
  13. Visit your library and attend a workshop or class
  14. Organize your clothes closet or drawers to feel more organized
  15. Write down 10 things you are grateful for

Note: You can also try these in moments of anxiety or depression to help clear your mind.

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March is Brain Injury Awareness Month

As a provider of home care services to individuals with brain injuries, it’s important for us to inform and educate our communities on ABIs.  On day 1, we’re beginning with the facts.

Here are some stats brought to you by the Brain Injury Association of America.

Brain Injury facts (3)

The Therapeutic Benefits of Crocheting

Crocheting.

I know this may seem like unusual subject matter for a home care blog, but in fact, it’s quite appropriate. Crocheting is the new trend (ok so maybe it never went out of style) and it’s proving to be a strategy of self-care for individuals seeking zen in their lives.

According to a recent study presented by the University of Wollongong in Australia, crocheting is responsible for positively affecting your health and well-being. It aids with anxiety, insomnia, and keeps your fine motor skills on point.

 

Of the 8,000 participants involved in this study 90% find that crocheting made them feel calmer and 82% were happier when engaged in the craft. 77% of these individuals crochet on some level every single day.

If you are a caregiver or simply looking for a new way to relax and express creativity, this is an inexpensive approach to self-care. Whether you keep the items for yourself, gift them, or make a donation to a charity in need, overall, it’s a win-win! So get your hook and yarn ready and be prepared to chill out and make some cool things. Check out some great stuff here: Crochet Ideas

Note: If you’re not sure where to even start, there are instruction books in the library and many step by step tutorials on YouTube and other internet sources.

edited-crochet-feature-imageCrochet Ideas

Why Home Care?

The healthcare industry is flourishing throughout the United States mainly due to the aging baby boomer population requiring increased medical and non-medical attention. Where we are in Connecticut, assisted living facilities are popping up at a rapid rate. We see crews working on weekends to complete these monstrosities that will soon be filled with elders and others seeking long-term medical support. We also see an increased number of families looking for alternative, less expensive options, like home care.

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So, why home care? What makes home care a more viable option for short or long-term health care? Well, the answer is not black and white. Every family doing their research on this matter should consider their loved ones needs and preferences prior to making final determination in either direction.

Congregate with your loved one and other family members to decide what that individual needs on a daily/weekly/monthly basis. Additionally, it’s important to determine how involved family members want to be on a regular basis. You might find after you compile this information that the answer is crystal clear. Either way, it’s smart to weigh the pros and cons of home care and assisted living solutions.

Here is a brief analysis of the pros and cons of home care and assisted living.

Home Care Pros

  • Each individual remains in a space that’s comfortable for them. Eases any anxiety a disruption in environment might cause.
  • Individual receives continuous care from 1 or 2 caregivers instead of many different caregivers.
  • Depending on the level of care required, it’s usually more effective to receive in home care.
  • Care plans take on a personalized approach so the individual is receiving exactly what they need.

Assisted Living Pros

  • Individuals are living with other residents giving them a less socially isolating environment.
  • Families are not responsible for scheduling caregivers.
  • Activities are always planned, encouraging active lifestyle.

Home Care Cons

  • Back up care giving involves a lot of planning.
  • The home may need modifications for safety and/or accessibility purposes.
  • Social isolation can lead to other health issues, it’s something to monitor if an individual receives minimal support at home.

Assisted Living Cons

  • Work force has a high turnover rate
  • Quality of care isn’t always as good as in home options
  • Individuals might find a change in environment as depressing and not adjust well to living in a facility which could decrease their quality of life.

 Do your research. Talk to companies. Set up appointments to meet in person.

In summary, you can do all the best research there is but it’s truly important to know what will please your loved one receiving the care.

Holidays are not Always Happy Days

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While the idea of Thanksgiving and the bright lights of the December holidays can bring about sentiments of merriment for some, there is the underlying pressure on people to enjoy themselves during the holidays. The reality is that many people feel increasingly isolated and unhappy during this season, and elders are no exception.

As people age, things that were once familiar, constant, and comfortable in life might abruptly change. People move away, pass away, and inevitably, this can affect even the healthiest and strongest individuals.

If you believe that your parent, friend, or neighbor may be depressed, there is a wide array of options. From small acts of kindness to more permanent solutions, we are offering 5 tips to make a change of positive impact.

5 Tips Towards Improving the Holidays for Elders

  1.  Let’s start with what we think is the MOST important thing you can do during the holidays with elders. Spend time with them. Listen to what they have to say and be the listening ears they need.
  2. If you sense that your loved one is depressed you can reach out to their religious affiliated organization or local spiritual groups that might have arranged social service programs in place for elders in their communities.
  3. Invite them to holiday gatherings. Even if they can’t go, it’s nice to be remembered.
  4. Arrange a time to get together and make a holiday inspired craft. This gives elders a chance to exercise both fine & gross motor skills plus it stimulates the brain and leaves everyone with a keepsake! (We have suggestions on our pinterest page)
  5. If you sense that someone needs a higher level of care in their home, look in your area for home care companies that can provide companionship, homemaking, transportation services, etc. all year round. This can elongate someone’s life span and improve their quality of life.

Do what you can to help your aging loved one feel involved and get into the holiday spirit!