WHEN IS OVERNIGHT CARE NEEDED FOR SENIORS?
Overnight care becomes very important for seniors and their families when comprehensive care is needed. Many seniors require help with daily activities such as bathing, eating, and grocery shopping. However, a greater benefit is seen with seniors who suffer from progressive conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.
What is Overnight Care & Who Can Benefit
Overnight care is when a caregiver provides care through the night. For example, they help with using the restroom at night, provide fluids and snacks, and assists the senior with getting ready for bed. Some seniors receive help with transfer assistance and changing positions in bed throughout the night. Overnight caregivers also prepare breakfast and offer morning care such as personal hygiene and home care.
Overnight care is best for those seniors who have trouble sleeping at night or who wander due to dementia. Having a caregiver available at night gives them assurance, relieves anxiety and disorientation due to disrupted sleep.
Benefits of Overnight Care
Overnight care gives peace of mind to your family, as you can rest assured that a highly qualified individual is providing constant care to their loved one.
Many seniors can wander at night due to dementia or similar conditions as they tend to experience disrupted sleep and disorientation. Frequent wakefulness that leads to wandering at night and can be dangerous. Not only can the senior be at risk for falling, but in general, seniors with these conditions should not be alone at night. An overnight caregiver can monitor them and help as needed.
In the case that a senior has epilepsy or other medical conditions and needs constant supervision, an overnight caregiver who is qualified for the specific type of care needed can help them deal with any medical condition if it gets worse. Family members can rest assured that their loved one is getting the best care possible in the case that their condition flairs up, or they face an emergency.
Many seniors can wander at night due to dementia or similar cIf the senor must use the restroom at night, the overnight caregiver can help. This way the senior can get to the restroom safely with the help of the caregiver.
Dementia can cause a change in personality and emotional outbursts. Leaving a senior with dementia at home at night can be dangerous, so having an overnight caregiver can help prevent the seniors with these conditions from facing dangerous situations.
Forgetting to take medications is common behavior for the elderly, especially if they are alone. Some medications such as the ones for blood pressure, must be taken regularly to avoid bad consequences. An overnight caregiver can remind the senior to take the medication before bed.
For those seniors that are extremely forgetful, it can be very beneficial to have an overnight caregiver. Seniors who are forgetful can leave the stove on and even leave their doors open. A highly qualified overnight caregiver can monitor their environment and help keep them safe.
As seniors get older, they can have depressive thoughts. An overnight caregiver can help support them emotionally and provide companionship to help prevent them from harming themselves while they are in a depressed state.
Article submitted by Robbie McCullough with Assisting Hands Home Care | www.assistinghands.com/38/texas/prestonhollow/
Originally Posted September 15, 2023Long-term care facilities, also referred to as Nursing Homes Working to improve the quality of care for elderly residents, the Biden Administration has given CMS the authority to implement new regulations that mandate nursing homes participating in Medicare and Medicaid to maintain minimum staffing levels and promote transparency. Outlined in a report from The White House, the new regulations target the long-standing concerns of understaffing and the impact it has on the quality of life and care of vulnerable residents in nursing homes. In this blog, we will discuss implications of the new rules and their potential to make an impact on long term care in the United States. Understaffing ProblemFor years understaffing has been an ongoing issue in U.S. nursing homes, with consequences being inadequate care to elderly neglect and abuse. The COVID-19 pandemic called attention to the vulnerabilities our loved ones face in these facilities, over 200.000 lives were lost in long-term care facilities (npr.org), which prompted a call for systemic change. As nursing homes struggled to cope with the demands of the pandemic, the need for more personnel and better staffing ratios became glaringly evident. New Regulation FocusThe Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has introduced new regulations requiring nursing homes to meet minimum staffing requirements, in an ongoing effort to improve the quality of care for Medicaid and Medicaid recipients and are expected to have a profound impact on the industry. New Regulations Key Provisions Minimum Staffing Levels: Nursing homes are now required to maintain a minimum staffing level, ensuring there are enough nurses and other staff members to meet residents needs adequately. These levels will vary depending on the size and needs of the facility. Staffing Ratios: Facilities must now have an appropriate number of registered nurses (RNs) on staff 24/7 to provide skilled nursing care to residents. Transparency: Nursing homes must be transparent about their staffing levels and retention, making this information readily available to residents and their families. As staffing levels and turnover have shown to be directly correlated with quality of care1. CMS database of nursing home owners and operators.2. Improve transparency of facility ownership and finances.3. Enhance nursing home Care Compare rating website.4. Examine the role of private equity investors in the nursing home sector Accountability: CMS will enforce these regulations through regular inspections and assessments. Nursing homes failing to meet the requirements may face serious penalties of lose their eligibility to Medicare and Medicaid fundingPotential Impact There are several positive changes these new regulations are expected to make in the long-term care industry Improved Quality of Care: Appropriate staffing levels mean better care for residents, as their needs will be addressed more promptly. When a residents need is met in a timely manner it can lead to preventable medical complications and overall improvement in the residents quality of life. (PubMed) Improved Resident Safety: Incidents of neglect and abuse may decline with more staff members available, ensuring a safer environment. Better Staff Retention: CMS is investing $75 million in financial incentives, in things like tuition reimbursement to help improve retention at nursing homes. (npr.org) When a facility is staffed adequately it can reduce burnout and stress, leading to less staff turnover and hopefully as a result will attract more skilled professionals to the industry. Informed Choices and Transparency: Nursing Home Five-Star Rating System will aid families in making informed decisions when choosing a facility for their loved ones. Government Accountability: Oversight and government enforcement are critical in ensuring nursing homes are held accountable and lead to systemic positive changes.Challenges and ConcernsImplementation: Due to nationwide shortages in nursing and healthcare supportive staff, nursing homes participating in Medicare and Medicaid may struggle to meet the new regulations standards.Costs: Hiring additional staff equates to increased costs which are often passed on to the residents. The American Health Care Association believes that the proposal will worsen current conditions and cost nursing homes billions. (Associated Press)Monitoring and Enforcement: Effectiveness of the new regulations will rely on regular monitoring and enforcement by CMS. With 75% of nursing homes nationwide being impacted, this could potentially lead to closures and additional struggles, especially in remote areas. (Associated Press)Not Enough: Leader of Long-Term Care Community Coalition, Richard Mollot, called the measures completely inadequate. While admitting that the 24/7 nursing requirement may make small improvements in some of the worst facilities. (Associated Press)There is no question that we all want quality care in a safe environment for our elderly and loved ones. While there will be many challenges to overcome implementation, the benefits in enhanced quality care, resident safety, and transparency outweigh the concerns. Only time will tell if these new regulations will truly be able to aid nursing homes in making changes that yield positive long-term outcomes for residents. Families being able to make better and more informed choices as to where their loved ones receive care is a step in the right direction. After decades of caring for loved ones, there is nothing that can compare to having a family member or friend that checks in on their person regularly. Being present and knowing youre coming has a positive impact not only on the residents but the staff too. Long-term care is a team effort and taking an active role to be a positive part of that team can make a significant difference. 'Britt Hemsell | Senior Living Advisor & Blog ContributorResources:The Associated Press by Matt Sedensky: reader.dallasnews.com/infinity/article_popover_share.aspx?guid=87cfddf9-73c6-4259-a88b-e6e912921658The White House: FACT SHEET: Biden-Harris Administration Announces New Steps to Improve Quality of Nursing Homes | The White HouseNPR: Biden New Federal Standards for Nursing Home Care : NPRPubMed: The association between nurses' burnout and objective care quality indicators: a cross-sectional survey in long-term care wards - PubMed (nih.gov)
Dementia and OCD Lead to Compulsive ShoppingTavis SchrieferCEO @ teleCalm, Phone service for Alzheimers & dementia, both at home and in senior livingMarch 1, 2024Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental health condition that affects about 1.2% of U.S. adults. People with OCD experience unwanted and intrusive thoughts (obsessions) that cause them anxiety or distress. They also perform repetitive behaviors (compulsions) to try to reduce or neutralize their anxiety. For example, someone with OCD may have a fear of germs and compulsively wash their hands or even develop a compulsive shopping disorder.OCD can be a chronic and disabling condition that interferes with daily functioning and quality of life. Unfortunately, some people with OCD may also be at a higher risk of developing dementia, a group of brain disorders that affect memory, thinking, and behavior. Dementia is more common in older adults, especially those over 65 years old, and it can cause cognitive decline, confusion, and personality changes.How OCD is linked to dementiaAccording to a recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry , people with OCD are more likely to develop dementia than people without OCD. The study used data from a large insurance database in Taiwan and followed 1,347 people with OCD and 13,470 matched controls without OCD for an average of 11 years. The researchers found that:People with OCD had a higher risk of developing Alzheimers disease, vascular dementia, and unspecified dementia than people without OCD.People with OCD developed dementia about 6 years earlier than people without OCD (70.5 years versus 76.7 years).People with OCD had a higher rate of early-onset dementia (before age 65) than people without OCD (1.7% versus 0.1%).The exact reasons why OCD is associated with dementia are not clear, but some possible explanations are:OCD may share some genetic or environmental risk factors with dementia, such as the APOE gene or chronic inflammation.OCD may cause chronic stress or damage to the brain over time, which may increase the vulnerability to dementia.OCD may make it harder to detect or treat dementia symptoms, as some cognitive impairments or behavioral changes may be attributed to OCD rather than dementia.How OCD and dementia affect compulsive shoppingOne of the possible consequences of having both OCD and dementia is compulsive shopping, which is the uncontrollable urge to buy things that are not needed or wanted. Compulsive shopping can cause financial problems, family conflicts, and emotional distress for the person and their caregivers.Compulsive shopping can be triggered by different factors in people with OCD and dementia, such as:Obsessions: People with OCD may have obsessive thoughts about buying certain items or completing certain collections, which may drive them to shop compulsively.Compulsions: People with OCD may use shopping as a way to cope with their anxiety or to perform rituals related to their obsessions, such as buying multiples of the same item or checking prices repeatedly.Memory loss: People with dementia may forget what they have already bought or why they bought it, which may lead them to buy the same things again or buy things they dont need.Impulsivity: People with dementia may lose their ability to control their impulses or plan ahead, which may make them more prone to buy things on a whim or fall for marketing tricks.Boredom: People with dementia may feel bored or lonely due to their cognitive decline or social isolation, which may make them seek stimulation or comfort through shopping.Compulsive shopping can be especially problematic when it involves purchasing products from home shopping channels and other ads on TV. These sources of shopping may be more accessible, appealing, or persuasive for people with OCD and dementia, as they may:Provide constant exposure to new products and offers that may trigger obsessions or impulses.Use high-pressure tactics such as limited-time deals, scarcity cues, testimonials, or guarantees that may exploit cognitive biases or vulnerabilities.Offer easy payment methods such as credit cards, phone orders, or online transactions that may bypass rational decision-making or budgeting.Deliver products directly to the home without requiring transportation or social interaction that may deter or limit shopping.How teleCalm service can helpIf you have a loved one who suffers from both OCD and dementia and engages in compulsive shopping from home shopping channels and TV ads, you may feel frustrated, worried, or helpless. Fortunately, there is a service that can help you manage this issue: teleCalm.teleCalm is a phone service that is designed specifically for seniors with dementia and their caregivers. It works with any existing phone and phone number, and it offers several features that can prevent or reduce compulsive shopping, such as:Blocking unwanted outgoing calls to home shopping channels and TV adsBlocking ALL incoming calls from telemarketers, scammers, and any other numbers you choose.Allowing only trusted callers to reach your loved one, such as family, friends, doctors, or emergency services.Viewing your loved ones phone activity and alerting you of any suspicious or unusual calls, such as repeated calls to the same number or calls at odd hours.Providing you with a dashboard on an app where you can control and customize your loved ones phone settings, such as call blocking, call filtering, or call scheduling.By using teleCalm, you can protect your loved one from compulsive shopping and its negative consequences, while also preserving their dignity, independence, and connection. You can also reduce your own stress and worry, knowing that your loved one is safe and supported.If you are interested in learning more about teleCalm, please visit teleCalmProtects.com or call 1-888-701-0411.
Did you know there are financial assistance programs available to veterans who need assisted living care? Our veterans made numerous sacrifices to uphold the freedom we enjoy today while their families kept the home fires burning. They are entitled to many benefits in appreciation for all they endured for America.Veterans benefits for senior living are available for qualifying veterans and their surviving spouses, as long as the veteran served at least 90 days of active duty, including at least one day during a wartime period, and received an honorable or general discharge.Veterans Aid and Attendance for assisted living careOffered through the Department of Veterans Affairs, Aid and Attendance is a monthly pension benefit that can help cover the costs of assisted living care. It is available for wartime veterans and their spouses who have limited income and require the regular attendance of a caregiver.Aid and Attendance is designed for individuals who need assistance from another person to complete everyday activities such as bathing, dressing and assistance with other daily activities. A veterans need for this benefit does not need to be the result of their military service.Funds received from Aid and Attendance benefits can offer a monthly benefit to help pay for assisted living and long-term care for a qualifying veteran and their spouse. The actual monthly benefit is determined by the veterans assets, income and medical expenses and conditions.Contact your local county Veterans Services office with questions on how to apply by visiting www.benefits.va.gov/vso.MedicareMedicare will pay for short-term care at nursing and rehabilitation facilities for seniors who need these services after an illness or injury that requires hospitalization. Medicare does not cover the cost for assisted living, home care or other senior living services.Long-Term Care BenefitsThe Veterans Administration provides both short- and long-term care in skilled nursing settings for veterans who cannot care for themselves. This benefit does not cover assisted living or home care.Housebound BenefitsVeterans confined to their homes and requiring assisted living care may be best suited to receive Housebound benefits. This program provides an increased monthly pension amount for those confined to their home due to a permanent disability.Applying for BenefitsThe Veterans Administration has regional offices that provide Veteran Service Organization representatives who may be able to answer simple questions about assisted living benefits, as well as provide free, basic advice on the application process.Many veterans seeking advice on applying for assisted living benefits hire a qualified attorney accredited by the VA or an accredited claims agent, who has passed a written exam about VA laws and procedures.The application process for assisted living benefits is often very lengthy. It is important to be thorough when completing the application and have all required documentation gathered and ready to submit.There are additional financial options to pay for assisted living care for individuals who do not qualify for veterans benefit. Click to find out more about financial options for senior living.Country Meadows offers affordable assisted living or personal care on its nine campuses in Pennsylvania and one in Frederick, Maryland. Our friendly co-workers are always available to help! Contact us today for more information.
Assisting Hands Home Care emphasizes exceptional customer service and customized in-home care to their clients. Their vision of providing a better alternative for the elderly, disabled, and others needing assistance at home, has grown over the years to a multi-award winning and highly recognized home care franchise.Their exceptional home care enriches the lives of its clients and provides peace of mind for the families. Its mission is to offer personalized non-medical support services in the clients homes by caring the elderly, disabled, and others needing assistance to maintain quality of life. Assisting Hands has been recognized for setting a standard for providing quality caregivers. The application and interview processes for hiring caregivers are in-depth and include a comprehensive background check and training before providing care in the homes of someones loved one. Their caregivers assist with the day-to-day activities such as senior in-home care, elderly care services, personal care, companion services, coordination of care, and more. They also help the family select the best matched caregiver for their loved one from its pre-screened group of available assistants and can have qualified help placed in the home generally within 48 hours or less of the initial call.