Top Tips for Reducing Elderly Anxiety at NightTrying to reduce elderly anxiety at night for a loved one? Read our top tips for the best ways to minimize elderly anxiety at night and improve their sleep quality.Alt Text: An Elderly Man Reminiscing (Image Source)Do you have an elderly loved one who experiences anxiety at night? Unfortunately, anxiety can become more common and impactful as we age, causing sleep disturbances and other issues. However, there are strategies that caregivers can use to help reduce anxiety in the elderly at night. This article will discuss tips for reducing elderly anxiety at night, including creating a relaxing environment, engaging in relaxation techniques, and utilizing innovative technologies. Read on to learn about assisting your senior family member in coping with their anxiety at night and improving their sleep quality.Related: Three Things to Consider When Taking Care of Your ParentsUnderstanding Elderly Anxiety at NightTo fully grasp nighttime anxiety in older adults, we must examine its causes and symptoms.The Causes of Anxiety in the Elderly at NightThere are various causes of anxiety in the elderly at night, some of which include:Health Concerns - Older adults may have concerns about their health, chronic illnesses, pain, and other age-related issues that can cause anxiety and worry at night.Loss of Independence - Aging can cause a loss of independence, which can be emotionally distressing and lead to anxiety.Fear of Falling - Older adults are at an increased risk of falling, which can cause anxiety and fear, especially at night when it is dark, and visibility is low.Loneliness and Isolation - Many older adults live alone, which can lead to feelings of loneliness and isolation. These feelings can heighten at night with less social interaction and distractions.Financial Concerns - Older adults may worry about their financial stability, especially if they are retired and living on a fixed income.Medications - Certain medications can cause side effects such as insomnia, nightmares, and anxiety, which can be more pronounced at night.Cognitive Decline - As people age, Alzhermers, dementia, and cognitive decline can occur, which can cause confusion, disorientation, and anxiety at night.Past Traumatic Experiences - Older adults may have experienced traumatic events in their past, such as war, abuse, or loss of loved ones, which can cause anxiety and flashbacks at night.Click Here to see how teleCalm can stop late night calls!Identifying Anxiety Symptoms in Older AdultsAnxiety symptoms can manifest differently in older adults compared to younger individuals. Some common symptoms of anxiety in the elderly include:Excessive Worrying - Elderly individuals may excessively fret over health, finances, and various life aspects.Physical Symptoms - Anxiety may induce symptoms like increased heart rate, perspiration, trembling, and shortness of breath.Sleep Disturbances - Seniors with anxiety might struggle with falling asleep, maintaining sleep, or awakening too early.Irritability and Restlessness - Anxiety can lead to feelings of irritability, agitation, and restlessness in older adults.Avoidance Tendencies- Some seniors with anxiety might evade situations that exacerbate their anxious feelings, such as social gatherings or leaving the house.Memory Challenges - Anxiety can impact memory and focus, posing concerns for elderly individuals experiencing cognitive decline to some extent.Physical Complaints - Anxiety can cause physical complaints such as headaches, gastrointestinal problems, and muscle tension.Late-Night and Repeated Calling - It is important to note that according to WebMD, these symptoms can also indicate other medical conditions, and a proper evaluation by a healthcare professional is necessary to determine the underlying cause.Top Tips for Reducing Elderly Anxiety at NightHere are some tips that can help reduce elderly anxiety at night:1 Using teleCalm's Repeat Dialing FeatureWith just a few simple steps, you can customize your preferences in the teleCalm Caregiver App to stop compulsive and repeated calls.Features of teleCalm's Repeat Dialing include:Customizable Settings: Choose the number of calls (2-5 times) and the specified period of time (15-60 minutes) before repeat dialing is activated.NotificationsGentle Messages to Your Loved OneNo Additional CostAlt Text: An Elderly Woman In Her Room (Image Source)2. Using teleCalm's Quiet Hours FeatureThe teleCalm's Quiet Hours feature can block incoming and outgoing calls during specific times. Here's how the Quiet Hours feature works:Customizable Settings - You can customize Quiet Hours in the teleCalm Caregiver App to activate during specific times, such as Nighttime Quiet Hours from 10 pm to 7 am.Default or Personalized Messages - Your loved one will hear a default message during Quiet Hours. You can also record a personalized message in your voice to reassure them.Easy to Set Up - Activate Quiet Hours under the Settings screen in the teleCalm Caregiver App. Select the time ranges for Daytime and Nighttime Quiet Hours. You can also adjust or turn off Quiet Hours anytime in the app.3. Establishing a Regular Sleep RoutineA consistent sleep schedule can help improve sleep quality and reduce anxiety at night. Encourage the elderly to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day.4. Creating a Calming Sleep EnvironmentMake sure the bedroom is comfortable, quiet, and dark. Encourage the elderly to create a peaceful atmosphere by playing soothing music, using aromatherapy, or using a white noise machine.5. Limiting Caffeine and Alcohol IntakeEncourage the elderly to avoid caffeine and alcohol before bedtime, as these substances can interfere with sleep quality and contribute to anxiety.6. Developing a Relaxation RoutineMeditation, deep breathing, and progressive muscle relaxation can help reduce anxiety and promote relaxation before bedtime.7. Addressing Underlying Medical ConditionsAddress any underlying medical conditions contributing to anxiety at night, such as pain, urinary urgency, or respiratory distress.8. Talking to a Healthcare ProfessionalEncourage the elderly to seek professional help if their anxiety at night is severe or interfering with their daily activities. A mental health professional or physician can provide appropriate treatment options.Click Here to Contact teleCalm Today and Start Stress Free Phone Service!Alt Text: An Elderly Gentleman Holding a Colorful Ball (Image Source)Use a Mixed Approach to Help Combat Elderly Anxiety at NightElderly anxiety at night is a common issue that can significantly impact their quality of life. Fortunately, there are several strategies that caregivers can use to help alleviate anxiety in the elderly at night, such as establishing a regular sleep routine, creating a relaxing environment, engaging in relaxation techniques, and seeking professional help. Additionally, teleCalm offers solutions such as the Repeat Dialing feature, which can help reduce compulsive and repeated callsthe Quiet Hours feature, which blocks incoming and outgoing calls during specific times. With a mixed approach incorporating lifestyle changes and innovative technologies, caregivers can help their loved ones manage anxiety and improve their overall well-being.Related: My Mom is Calling at 3AM
Parkinsons Disease Early DetectionApril is Parkinsons Awareness Month. Parkinsons disease is the second most common neurodegenerative disease, after Alzheimers. Most people will develop symptoms of Parkinsons disease around age 60. At Healthcare Network, within our senior primary care services, we watch for signs and symptoms of Parkinsons disease as well as all potential illnesses that impact seniors.Early detection of Parkinsons disease, a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects more than 1 million Americans, is important to slowing disease progression. But many other illnesses share similar symptoms with Parkinsons disease, including slowness, stiffness, tremors and imbalance. Age can make people more prone to falls and certain diseases, even without Parkinsons disease.Sometimes, people dismiss early symptoms of Parkinsons as the effects of normal aging. Therefore, it is especially important for seniors to establish a relationship and health history with a primary care team who can detect potential health problems early before they become severe. About 85% of older adults have at least one chronic health condition. Sixty percent have at least two chronic conditions.Importance of a Primary Care Physician in Treating Parkinsons DiseaseSeveral healthcare professionals are needed to effectively manage Parkinsons disease and its impacts on quality of life, according to ParkinsonsDisease.net. For example, primary care providers focus on immediate and overall health needs while helping patients manage symptoms of the disease. Primary care providers often also coordinate care with other health professionals including neurologists and movement disorder specialists who assess disease progression and prescribe medications.Overall, primary care physicians (PCPs) play a key role in senior care because they know the patients history and background. The PCP is often the first point of contact for the patients and provides comprehensive care for chronic, preventive and acute conditions, according to ParkinsonsDisease.net.In addition, recent surveys have shown that strong patient-physician relationships result in healthier outcomes. Your PCP can connect the dots, spending less time on your past and more time on the future.Research has shown that people who live in states that have more primary care physicians have better health outcomes. This includes fewer deaths from cancer, heart disease or stroke. In a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, respondents with primary care received more high-value care compared with those without primary care. Enhanced treatment included filling prescriptions, routine preventive visits and screenings.According to Harvard Health, PCPs work in teams that keep the patient as the center of all diagnostic and treatment activities. The explosion of medical knowledge and treatment alternatives makes it important to have a primary care provider to interpret and advise on the best course of action.Senior Care Helps to Manage Multiple ConditionsParkinsons disease occurs when nerve cells around the brain that controls movement become impaired and/or die. As the disease progresses and changes, so do care needs. Establishing care with a PCP provides continuity and consistency in care that can help Parkinsons patients avoid using costly urgent care or emergency rooms for acute needs.In addition, many people with Parkinsons disease experience mood disorders because of their condition. Our integrated mental and behavioral health model, where medical and mental health professionals work side-by-side, allows these concerns to be addressed seamlessly during primary care visits.Another advantage of having a dedicated PCP when dealing with Parkinsons is they can watch for the impact of medication changes, infections, dehydration, sleep deprivation, stress and other medical conditions that can worsen Parkinsons disease symptoms. A PCP can consider other conditions and medications and adjust with the patients overall health in mind.People with Parkinsons can expect to live almost as long as those who do not have the disorder. Medications, as well as physical and occupational therapy, can improve a persons quality of life. Early detection and coordinated care are key to reducing complications. By being aware of the common chronic conditions associated with aging, your PCP can take steps to practice smart preventative care, manage complex chronic conditions like Parkinsons and improve health outcomes.Make an AppointmentTo make an appointment at one of our many locations with a care provider, call 239-658-3000. Already a patient of Healthcare Network? Visit our secure Patient Portal to access medical information, request appointments, and manage prescriptions 24/7. Learn more.About AuthorDr. Reiner Ramirez is a Healthcare Network family care provider who focuses on specific health concerns faced by seniors. Healthcare Network provides integrated health where medical and mental health professionals work side-by-side to address patients physical, mental and emotional health.
Non-contact boxing inspired classes can delay, reduce, and even reverse the symptoms of Parkinsons Disease.We are learning every day that there are ways in which people with Parkinsons disease can enhance their quality of life and even build strength, flexibility and speed! By exercising with coaches who know the ropes, you can fight your way out of the corner and start to feel and function better.These classes have proven that anyone, at any level of Parkinsons, can actually lessen their symptoms and lead a healthier and happier life.Why Boxing for Parkinsons?Various studies in the 1980s and 1990s supported the notion that rigorous exercise, emphasizing gross motor movement, balance, core strength, and rhythm, could favorably impact range of motion, flexibility, posture, gait, and activities of daily living. More recent studies, most notably at Cleveland Clinic, focus on the concept of intense forced exercise, and have begun to suggest that certain kinds of exercise may be neuro-protective, i.e., actually slowing disease progression. Discovery of a cure may be many years away but there is evidence that progress is made in all stages of the disease by those participating in the Rock Steady Boxing program.The Parkinsons ChallengeParkinsons disease is a degenerative movement disorder which can cause deterioration of motor skills, balance, speech and sensory function. Rock Steady Boxing is the first program in the country dedicated to the fight against Parkinsons. In our program, exercises are largely adapted from boxing drills. Boxers condition for optimal agility, speed, muscular endurance, accuracy, hand-eye coordination, footwork and overall strength to defend against and overcome opponents. At Rock Steady Boxing, Parkinsons disease is the opponent. Exercises vary in purpose and form but share one common trait: they are rigorous and intended to extend the perceived capabilities of the participant.Types of Rock Steady Boxing ClassesTraining classes include an exercise program that attacks Parkinsons at its vulnerable neurological points. While focusing on overall fitness, workouts include: focus mitts, heavy bags, speed bags, double-ended bags, water bags, core work, cognitive activities, voice activation and circuit weight training. No boxing experience is necessary and people of all ages are invited to participate. There are four levels of classes offered, depending on the participants level or Parkinsons and overall fitness. All classes at Rock Steady Boxing SRQ are mixed-level at this time.Medical Evidence Supporting Rock Steady BoxingThe value of exercise has been corroborated in several studies, including some at Lakehead University in Ontario and University of Utah in Salt Lake City. According to a Cleveland Clinic study, aerobic fitness can be improved in Parkinsons patients following forced and/or voluntary exercise. Studies are showing that exercise induces brain repair and accompanying behavioral recovery. Some suggest that continuous, intensive training may confer neuro-protection, and subsequently, slow, stop or reverse the progression of Parkinsons or promote neuro-restoration. (References to any studies are for informational purposes only and do not imply endorsement of Rock Steady Boxing by the researchers.)Because of the promising results seen through Rock Steady Boxing, the organization was selected to be a part of research to document the impact of boxing and rigorous exercise on the progression of Parkinsons. Rock Steady Boxing has also drawn the attention of university researchers who are in the process of quantifying and evaluating the results in people who have continued with Rock Steady Boxing.Can Anyone with Parkinsons Participate?Nearly everyone with Parkinsons disease can participate and receive benefit from Rock Steady Boxing. An intake evaluation process is conducted prior to the first class to determine the boxers ability and evaluate balance risks. Some participants will require a caregiver partner to assist in class. Individuals of all ages are benefiting from the Rock Steady Boxing program.We strongly encourage you to discuss Rock Steady Boxing participation with your physician prior to your first workout.Rock Steady SRQ Class FormatOur typical class has the following format:Warm-up including voice activation. We warm up our bodies and voices together.Glove up while coach Leslie goes through the boxing combos for the day.Go to bags and start punching. We normally stay at each bag for four rounds, consisting of two punching and two body-weight exercise rounds.Take off gloves, get some water and rest a few minutes.Strength workout consisting of gross motor movements, balance, cardio and core work with a fun station or two mixed in!We end class down on the floor with stretching and a short meditation for the last 15 minutes of class.Circle up together for our cheesy cheer and head out the door.Rock Steady Boxing HistoryRock Steady Boxing, the first boxing program of its kind in the country, was founded in 2006 by former Marion County (Indiana) Prosecutor, Scott C. Newman, who is living with Parkinsons. Rock Steady Boxing initially began through the friendship of two men, Scott Newman and Vince Perez, after Scott had been diagnosed with early-onset Parkinsons at the age of 40. Refusing to let his friend go down without a fight, Vince turned to his experience as a Golden Gloves boxer to design a program that attacks Parkinsons at its vulnerable neurological points. His intuitive insight is now proven to have merit through an increasing body of medical research. Realizing that their experience might be replicated for others, Scott and Vince founded Rock Steady Boxing as a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization. As word of this unique program spread and the demand for the classes increased, Rock Steady Boxing created classes to meet the fitness levels at all stages of Parkinsons from the newly diagnosed to those who had been living with it for decades plus.