Happy, Healthy Senior Living : Keeping Your Loved One’s Home Disease-Free

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HOW TO KEEP GERMS & DISEASE OUT OF YOUR PARENT'S HOME​

As our loved ones age, they become more susceptible to disease because their immune system has weakened over time. Because of this, they are more likely to develop dangerous health complications as a result of everyday illnesses. Prevention efforts are vital to ensuring our loved ones remain happy and healthy in their home.

Our parents’ health is a top priority.  As they age, there are many steps we can take to ensure that they are protected from disease while still able to remain independent in their home.

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Sanitization & DAILY ROUTINE​

The first line of defense in keeping our loved one’s home germ- and disease-free is a thorough cleaning schedule. 

  • Break down cleaning tasks that may need to be completed daily, weekly, and monthly. High-touch surfaces like counters, faucets, dishes, and remotes should be wiped down daily with disinfectant or bleach to keep germs at bay. However, chores like vacuuming, dusting, and mopping may only need to be completed weekly.
  • Create reminders for a loved one to complete necessary cleaning tasks
  • Consider investing in a hands-free faucet and soap dispenser to promote frequent hand washing.
  • Ensure a loved one has access to appropriate personal hygiene supplies and assistive devices necessary to shower and toilet daily. Access to a raised toilet seat, shower handles, or a shower chair may be required for them to wash properly. Additionally, an adjustable showerhead may help a loved one bathe themselves wholly and thoroughly.
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Health PROMOTION

Our loved ones may need more than just a rigorous cleaning schedule to keep their homes disease-free. Primary prevention efforts, such as changes to diet, exercise, and medical care, may be necessary to prevent sickness and ensure they can live a happy and healthy life.

  • Schedule a loved one for appropriate immunizations every year.
  • Help a parent with grocery shopping and meal preparation to create meals that are nutritious and well-balanced.
  • Work with a loved one to develop an exercise plan they’re excited to begin. Consider involving a variety of activities to keep them interested and engaged.

 

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Keeping Germs At bay

The best way to keep disease out of our loved one’s home is to avoid bringing it in in the first place. We should avoid visiting a parent if we are sick to prevent infecting them, no matter how excited we are to visit. Instead, try keeping them connected to others through the following:

  • Send over a healthy friend or family member to spend some quality time.
  • Reach out to a loved one by phone, text message, or video chat. Ensure they have the resources to reach out to you, too. A large button phone may assist with this.
  • Connect them with opportunities to engage with others through online volunteering and workouts.
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Emergency PREPAREDNESS

If disaster strikes, the best way we can help our loved ones is by giving them the skills and tools they need to remain independent in their home. We can make a plan with our loved ones on what we will do in an emergency, and we can ensure they know of all appropriate community contacts and resources. Ask the following:

  • Do they have a supply of clean drinking water?
  • Is there enough food in the house to last 3-6 days? Do they have the tools they need to prepare this food, such as an electric can opener or a bottle/lid opener?
  • Do they have a first aid kit in the home? An ample supply of their medications?
  • Do they have a list of their conditions, drugs, and allergies if emergency medical responders need to come to the home?
  • Are there flashlights or lanterns available in every room? What about batteries to operate them?
  • Will they have access to all the appropriate hygiene supplies to get them through this time?

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Routines of healthy living

I’m here to help keep a loved one’s home clean and help you support them in this process. Some of the practices we may feel tedious at first, but quickly may come part of a loved one’s daily routine. Such routines are not only good for one’s physical health and hygiene but also show mental health benefits as well. 

Living prepared while Preventing Disease

Disease prevention can be a daunting task. Fortunately, Beverly’s Daughter is here to make things easier for you and your loved one. To best assess the risks in your parent’s home, ask their Primary Care Physician for a list of recommended steps you can take to promote health and prevent disease. Send this list to me, and I will contact you within 48 hours with a customized action plan tailored to your loved one’s unique needs. Your loved ones are my priority.

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