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Resources for Families / Resources for Seniors

“I thought he was having a stroke.”

That’s how Debbie Hilt, a consultant with the Trail Ridge Home Care’s partner HomeCare Advocacy Network (HCAN) describes her 95-year-old dad’s scary bout with dehydration.

“I called to check in and noticed right away that he wasn’t himself,” Hilt said. “He was very confused and slurring his words, so I immediately hung up and called 9-1-1. After an ambulance ride and lot of tests, doctors determined that he was dehydrated.”

According to the National Council on Aging, older people are at a greater risk for dehydration, because they naturally have a lower volume of water in their bodies. Chronic medical conditions and some medications may also increase the risk. Continue reading Drink Up: The Importance of Hydration

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News / Resources for Families / Resources for Seniors

We know music is good for the soul, but did you know it’s also good for the mind?

Studies show that music brings our senses to life and stimulates many parts of the brain at the same time, including those that affect language, mood and movement. Through research at the University of California, Davis, experts have even pinpointed the region of the brain which stores memories by linking them to familiar songs and the emotions associated with those memories.

“We’ve seen the reaction from our own family members as well as clients who have some form of dementia – a visible change often takes place when they hear music,” said Austin Blilie, Chief Operating Officer at Trail Ridge Home Care’s parent organization, ABHM. “If they hear a familiar song, they might sing, dance or clap their hands. It makes them happy and, in many cases, it can lessen aggressive behavior.” Continue reading The Benefits of Music Therapy

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Resources for Families / Resources for Seniors

Are you feeling overwhelmed or worried?

Have you lost interest in activities you used to enjoy?

Are you sleeping too much or too little?

“Caring for an aging loved one can be incredibly rewarding, but it can also be very challenging – especially if your loved one has dementia,” said Austin Blilie, Chief Operating Officer at Trail Ridge Home Care’s parent organization, ABHM. “When you’re taking care of someone else, it’s easy to forget about your own health and wellbeing – but neglecting your own needs could lead to caregiver burnout.” Continue reading 10 Signs of Caregiver Burnout

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Resources for Families / Resources for Seniors

Your aging mom is failing. She doesn’t need skilled nursing or assisted living yet – just a little help with things like light housekeeping, meal prep and getting in and out of the shower. You’ve heard a lady from your mom’s church sometimes works as an independent caregiver, but is that the best option?

“Private caregivers make up what we call the ‘gray market’ – providers who are unrelated to the client, not working for a regulated agency and potentially uninsured  and untrained,” said Austin Blilie, Chief Operating Officer at Trail Ridge Home Care’s parent organization, ABHM. “While hiring one of these independent caregivers might seem like a good idea, families should be aware of the risks.” Continue reading Choosing the Right Caregiver

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Resources for Families / Resources for Seniors

If you’re caring for someone who has Alzheimer’s or a related dementia, you know that encouraging them to eat nutritious meals can be a daily challenge – especially during the middle and late stages of the disease.

“We work with many families who are experiencing this challenge,” said Austin Blilie, Chief Operating Officer at Trail Ridge Home Care’s parent organization, ABHM. “Refusal to eat can be caused by a number of things – there could be a medical condition, they may not recognize that food is something to eat, they may have lost the sense of hunger and thirst or they might get distracted at mealtime. Whatever the reason, it’s important to find ways to ensure they get the nutrition they need.”

To make mealtimes easier, Blilie suggest that you: Continue reading Ten Tips to Make Mealtimes Easier for People with Dementia

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Resources for Families / Resources for Seniors

Are aging loved ones traveling with you on this summer’s family vacation?

While it’s a wonderful opportunity for quality family time, traveling with older loved ones can be challenging, especially if they have Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia.

“Lots of great memories are made on summer vacations, so it’s wonderful when grandma and grandpa are able to travel with the rest of the family,” said Austin Blilie, Chief Operating Officer at Trail Ridge Home Care’s parent organization, ABHM. “If your senior has health issues, limited mobility or dementia, travel may be challenging – but it’s not impossible. Taking a few extra steps before you hit the road can help you avoid potential problems”

When traveling with senior loved ones who have dementia, Blilie recommends that you: Continue reading Travel Tips for People Who Have Dementia

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News / Resources for Families / Resources for Seniors

Your mom seems to have trouble focusing while reading or watching her favorite television program.

Does she simply need new glasses or could it be something more serious?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 3 million Americans have some form of glaucoma – a group of diseases that damage the eye’s optic nerve. When left untreated, it can cause vision loss and even blindness. Continue reading Understanding Glaucoma

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Resources for Families / Resources for Seniors

If you’re caring for someone who has dementia, you know that they often need help completing, what used to be, simple tasks.

“Many of us at the Trail Ridge Home Care have personal experience with dementia, so we understand many of the challenges that come with the disease,” said Austin Blilie, Chief Operating Officer at Trail Ridges Home Care’s parent organization, ABHM. “While most people with early-stage dementia can continue to live independently, we know that daily tasks will eventually become more difficult. However, with a few simple tools, life can be easier for everyone.”

Blilie recommends: Continue reading Tools That Can Make Life Easier for People Who Have Dementia

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News / Resources for Families / Resources for Seniors

Did you know stroke is the third leading cause of death among women and kills more women than men?

Surprised? If so, you’re not alone. Many women are not aware of their risk or the fact that symptoms can present differently in women.

“In recognition of American Stroke Month, we’re joining with other organizations across the country to raise awareness about symptoms and prevention,” said Austin Blilie, Chief Operating Officer at Trail Ridge Home Care’s parent organization, ABHM.

“Knowing the facts about stroke can help women take steps to protect their health and, if needed, seek treatment.” Continue reading Women and Stroke – What You Need to Know

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News / Resources for Families / Resources for Seniors

When it comes to healthy aging, a little exercise goes a long way – especially when it comes to Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.

Experts with the Alzheimer’s Society, analyzed data from 16 studies into exercise and dementia. They found that regular exercise can reduce the risk of developing dementia by about 28%. For Alzheimer’s disease specifically, the risk was reduced by 45%.

“This kind of research is very important” said Austin Blilie, Chief Operating Officer at Trail Ridge Home Care’s parent organization, ABHM.  “We’re hopeful that one day there will be a cure for dementia, but until then we need to do whatever we can to prevent it.” Continue reading Physical Exercise and Cognitive Decline

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