Atrial fibrillation (A-fib) and heart failure are increasing in prevalence worldwide and often associated with poor outcomes. However, some people are not aware they have atrial fibrillation until it is detected when a doctor is listening to the heart with a stethoscope. If you have difficulty breathing, or have chest pains lasting more than a few minutes, it is recommended to seek medical help. Someone with A-fib can still live a long and active life with treatment from their doctor and self-management.Treatment may include medications, therapy, surgery, or catheter procedures, in order to reset the heart rhythm, control heart rate, and prevent blood clots that can lead to strokes.Self-management includes following a heart-healthy lifestyle with changes such as:Eating heart-healthy foodsExercising regularlyQuit smokingMaintain a healthy weightLimit alcoholKeep blood pressure and cholesterol under controlGet follow-up careLearn more:Atrial fibrillation [Internet] Mayo Clinic. Available from: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/atrial-fibrillation/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20350630
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
When it comes to health, theres a lot of misleading or outdated information. You really dont need a miracle diet; some magic beans, or snake oil to make an impact on your overall well-being. Many people think that taking medication will fix the problem - but it doesnt. Heart disease is an issue that causes death in 1 of 4 men and women in the United States. The good news is that heart disease is preventable through healthy diet choices and making healthy lifestyle choices (like exercising).Often even if youve had years of unhealthy eating under your belt, making some lifestyle changes, getting exercise, reducing stress and fatigue, drinking tons of water and making healthy eating choices make the biggest difference. The best part? These are all things you can do yourself, no prescription required! Making Lifestyle ChangesSometimes, making lifestyle changes can be tough because some habits have been built up for long periods of time. Some lifestyle changes that can have an immediate effect on your heart health include:-Stop smoking now stops the growth of plaque buildup and hardening arteries-Cut back on drinking alcoholic beverages-Maintain a healthy weight by eating right and exercising-Exercise or doing a hobby outdoors instead of watching TV (research from Harvard School of Public Health suggests that watching more than two hours of TV per day causes an increased risk of heart disease) Getting ExerciseGetting moving is the trademark of a healthy lifestyle! It doesnt have to be super strenuous - like running a mile; just get some exercise! Some good exercises for seniors include:-A brisk walk through the park-Gardening-Walking the dog or taking the dog to the park-Balance exercises for seniors like walking heel to toe or marching in place-Wall push-ups and other strength exercises for seniors Reducing Stress and FatigueHave you ever gotten worked up and then had a fast pulse or felt on edge? Thats because stress directly raises your risk for heart disease. An AHA (American Heart Association) study found that doing a few meditation activities can actually reduce your risk of heart attacks significantly (compared to people that dont meditate to moderate stress). Heres an example of meditation exercises that you can do in 5 minutes: -Focus on an interesting painting or nature scene -Take several deep breaths -Focus on the moment rather than focusing on negativity -Distract yourself with a calming task -Listen to music Drink Tons of WaterDid you know that your body is 60% water? Its constantly depleting this amount too - so doctors suggest drinking at least 64 ounces of water a day. Thats because it has a ton of positive benefits. Water:-Improves heart and brain function, while improving memory-Prevents issues like constipation, kidney stones, and headaches; reducing stress -Makes it easier to lose weight and improves metabolism-Reduces the risk of heart attack and improves sleep quality if you drink a glass of water before bed (but dont drink too much!) Making Healthy Eating Choices - the TRUE Heart Healthy DietYouve probably heard that you are what you eat, and in a lot of ways its very true. If you eat unhealthily, you often feel lethargic, tired, and slow (think about how you feel after a big meal). Thats because the body is struggling to digest and break down unhealthy foods. And when we crave unhealthy foods, its often best to find other, healthier alternatives. Thats why at Legend Senior Living we always stress: -Low sugar diets over low calorie diets-Managing your sugar or eliminating your sugar intake entirely-Cutting down on carbohydrates such as bread, pasta, and starchy foods to lower blood sugar levels-Eating one fruit product a day to beat sugar craving causes naturally-Eating plenty of proteins, cheeses and milk-Getting dietary fiber through leafy greens and other healthy vegetables (sweet potatoes, asparagus and other low GI (glycemic index) foods like peppers and green veggies. You can always reference glycemic reference food charts to better follow low glycemic index diets as well Everyone Needs Some Help Sometimes - Plus its Heart Health Month! Legend Senior Living focuses on heart health this time of year; especially after holidays full of junk food and sugar. We help teach our clients how to better prepare lunches and breakfasts. We schedule professional dietitians and cardiologists to better explain how exercise, dieting, and reducing stress improve your heart health. Learn more about preventing heart disease for your loved ones today - give us a call to schedule a visit!