Diet and Brain Health

Most people know that to be healthy, it’s important to eat the right foods and get plenty of exercise. Food is how a body gets energy so that it can function, but eating the right foods will help the body run more optimally. There are even some foods that are more beneficial to the brain than others.

A person’s brain is always working. It keeps the rest of the body functioning, including the heart, lungs, digestive tract, and so forth. It can be likened to a machine, and ensuring that the machine is running in top condition means giving it the right fuel. Everyone, including those getting memory care in San Diego, can benefit from eating a brain-healthy diet. Below are some foods that are considered good for the brain and its function.

Fish

Deep-water fish such as salmon are loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, and these are essential for brain function. These fatty acids are also full of anti-inflammatory elements so they can help reduce pain associated with swelling in the body. In addition to salmon, herring and sardines are also full of these brain-healthy elements, and it’s recommended eating fish two to three times a week.

Blueberries

In some tests, it has been discovered that blueberries can protect the brain from oxidative stress and could potentially decrease the impacts from dementia or Alzheimer’s. Blueberries have also been found to improve the motor skills and learning capacity in rat subjects, but that could be beneficial for humans as well.

Avocados

Avocados function in much the same way as blueberries in promoting brain health, but they can also lower blood pressure. This is good for both heart and brain health because a good-flowing circulatory system gets the entire body the nutrients it needs to be active and healthy.

Seeds and Nuts

These foods are high in vitamin E, which has been shown to help with cognitive decline as people age. Eating sesame seeds, flax seeds, sunflower seeds, walnuts, Brazil nuts, almonds, peanuts, or unhydrogenated nut butters, among others, can be beneficial for those in memory care in San Diego.

Whole Grains

Oatmeal, brown rice, and whole-grain bread have the ability to reduce the risk of heart disease. Since every part of the body depends on the blood supplying nutrients and oxygen, this will keep the body running smoothly and efficiently and boost brain health.

Beans

Any type of bean will provide the brain with glucose, which is the fuel it needs to run. Eating at least half a cup daily will help keep the brain functioning properly.

Having a diet that is full of foods that promote brain health is important, especially for those in memory care in San Diego. Keeping the brain running effectively and efficiently is beneficial.

Seniors and Smartphone Safety

Getting a new phone can be an exciting prospect for anyone. As technology advances, it allows people to access the internet and stay in touch with family and friends from one small device. This can be beneficial, but it can also be challenging for older individuals.

For those who are in senior care in San Diego, a smartphone gives them a sense of independence and allows them to stay connected. There are some drawbacks, however, such as finding a phone that is easy for a person who may have arthritis to handle and one with a large enough screen for those with vision issues to see. If the person has any other problems that may make it difficult to use a smartphone, these are definitely things to keep in mind.

In addition to being able to see and operate the phone, seniors will also need to be warned about the potential hazards. They aren’t the only ones—these are good reminders for everyone! Keep these potential problems in mind when getting a smartphone.

Scam Calls

These types of calls can occur on a landline or a cell phone, and their goal is to get money out of unsuspecting victims. Reminding a person not to give personal information to people they don’t know will be helpful.

Scam Text Messages

Unlike a landline, smartphones have the ability to send and receive text messages, and scammers are apt to use this to get information out of people. Reminding people not to respond to numbers they don’t recognize will help, as will reminding them not to click on links that say they’ve won a prize. This could download a virus that could steal information on their phone and possibly their identity.

Password Use

Encouraging a person in senior care in San Diego to use a password on their phone will keep their information safer. If there’s a fear they won’t remember the password, get a phone that has fingerprint technology so they can still access their phone but no one else can.

Keep Personal Information Safe

Storing personal information in a smartphone might seem convenient, but if the phone gets stolen or lost, it could wind up in the wrong hands. Even with a password, it’s best not to store anything on a smartphone that could lead to an identity being stolen.

Be Careful with Apps

There are so many apps available right now. There are apps for fun and apps for storing medical information. Downloading these is easy, but it can also lead to information getting stolen or the phone being infected with viruses. If there are any questions about the safety of an app, be sure to help an individual out so they can stay safe on their smartphone.

How to be a Good Senior Advocate

There may come a time when a loved one is no longer able to advocate for themselves. They may get incredibly ill or be debilitated by dementia. If this happens, they’ll need someone to step in and help them.

The role of an advocate is to convey a person’s wishes to ensure that they are receiving the best care possible. This advocate can be a family member, a professional that specializes in these services, or they can be part of an organization that works with senior care services in San Diego.

When it comes to being an advocate, the role goes beyond talking a person to doctor’s appointments or picking up their prescriptions from the pharmacy. An advocate is responsible for making sure all of a person’ medical care is being taken care of properly. This can include the following:

  • Ensuring that a living will or power of attorney is in place (if needed)
  • Ensuring that medications are taken correctly and on time
  • If a hospital visit occurs, they will ensure that all information is correct
  • They have all information pertaining to Medicare, Medicaid, and other insurance coverage
  • They take the person to doctor’s visits and pick up their prescriptions

Being an advocate can be an incredibly stressful and exhausting job. It requires keeping track of a lot of information and conveying that information to the necessary people. If anything changes, that information must also be shared.

To be a good advocate, the most important aspect is to have the person’s best interest in mind. They are counting on the advocate to let their wishes be known to the medical community and others. Communication is also important so that everyone is on the same page with what should happen during an emergency. If the person is seriously ill, they won’t be able to convey their desires, so the advocate must know exactly what the person wants.

An advocate is also responsible for having a list of all medications that a person is taking and have their insurance information. They may need other documentation depending on the circumstances. They need to keep track of doctor’s appointments and have phone numbers for emergency contacts or for the offices that assist the senior with their healthcare needs.

Being an advocate can be a demanding job. While some family members are more than happy to take the responsibility, for those who aren’t, there are professionals and other resources that can be contacted. Some of these come with a fee and some are free—it depends on where the advocate comes from.

When it comes to health and age, having an advocate will ensure that all wishes are met and the person receives the care they want and need.

Benefits of Creating a Daily Routine for Dementia Patients

Dealing with dementia or Alzheimer’s can be incredibly difficult—both for patients and caregivers—but there are some things that can be done to make it less challenging for both the patient in memory care in National City and others, and that includes developing or continuing a routine.

Depending on the type of dementia a person has, it can attack the short-term memory first, making it hard for them to learn new things. However, they often retain long-term memories, and having consistent, established routines can be beneficial.

There are a different types of routines, including those that are done on a regular basis such as eating breakfast (and eating certain things for breakfast), spending time reading or watching the news, having a hair appointment on a specific day of the week, going for a walk at a certain time of the day, and so on.

A routine might also consist of completing tasks in a specific order. For example, when getting ready for the day, a person might lay out their clothes on the bed, go into the bathroom to wash their face and brush their teeth, do their hair, then come back out to get dressed.

Developing a routine for a person with dementia may include building off the tasks that they already have established or slowly introducing them to new things. The routine should consist of getting some type of physical exercise, such as walking, and adding some puzzles, word games, art, or music to the day to stimulate their brain.

The most important part of developing a routine is to remain consistent, and it has to be something that the caregiver can also accomplish. This will make the routine less stressful for both the patient and others.

Having a routine is beneficial to the patient because it helps them maintain brain function. If they continue to do these specific things day in and day out, including getting some exercise, it may be a memory they don’t lose. Having a routine also reduces anxiety because the person will know exactly what to expect, so that could give them more confidence and make them feel more comfortable.

A routine may also give a person in memory care in National City some independence. Since they know what to expect, are confident in their ability to accomplish the task, and it’s something they do regularly, this can be great for their self-esteem and confidence.

Dealing with dementia is a challenging time for both the patient and the caregivers. Having a routine can help reduce stress and help both parties get through their day will relative ease. If both people know what to expect, this may reduce the amount of challenging behaviors that arise and make everyone feel comfortable and confident.

Ways to Boost Memory

As humans age, they have a tendency to lose some of their brain function. This could have an impact on the brain and what a person remembers. While not all issues, including dementia, can be reversed, there are some ways to boost brain activity and help a person in memory care in San Diego remember things.

  1. Go for a walk

Physical activity not only benefits the brain, but it also helps the body. It helps lower the risk of many diseases that can have an impact on brain function, including diabetes, obesity, stroke, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. Getting out for 30 minutes a day does a body and mind good.

  1. Play mind games

Just like physical exercise is good for the body, mental exercises can be beneficial also. Reading, playing cards, doing crosswords, or doing word searches are all ways to engage the brain. A person could even put together a puzzle or download an app on their phone. Any activity that requires thinking will be beneficial for the brain.

  1. Be social

Being around people and engaging in conversation is a great way to help brain function in memory care in San Diego. This will also lower depression and make a person feel loved and accepted.

  1. Get enough sleep

Sleep is when the brain and body heal, and without getting proper rest, a person will be both physically and mentally exhausted. Getting enough sleep is imperative for a healthy body and mind, so make it a point to go to bed on time.

  1. Relax

Being stressed is bad for the brain, and it releases chemicals that make it difficult to access information from the past. Staying relaxed by participating in activities such as yoga or meditation are helpful, as is getting a massage.

  1. Eat a healthy diet

Eating the right foods benefits the entire body, but certain foods, such as fish, nuts, blueberries, and avocados, have been proven to be good for the brain. Incorporate these into a diet to hold off negative effects of memory loss.

  1. Be organized

If the living space is in disarray, the mind will be too. Keep all things in a specific place so that they are easy to find when needed, including car keys, wallet or purse, cell phone, and other items. Keep a calendar of events and write down anything of importance or make to-do lists so that information and tasks can be cemented in the mind.

The older a person gets, the more forgetful they may become. Finding ways to prolong brain function is beneficial, and it can be good for the brain and for the rest of the body.

How a Diet Can Help a Person Live Longer

Extending a person’s life can be as easy as eating the right foods. Everyone knows that the foods they put into their bodies will have an impact on how they feel, but they may not always make the best decisions when it comes to mealtime. This can be due to exhaustion, lack of access to healthy food, or no motivation to actually cook.

When it comes to the older generation getting senior care in San Diego, ensuring they are eating healthy will help them feel better and could possibly extend their life. Not only are certain foods important, but it’s also imperative to eat them in the right amounts. Below are some things to consider for a diet to help a person live longer.

It Should be Heart Healthy

Heart-healthy diets aren’t only good for the heart, they will also help a person control their weight. This is important because obesity can lead to diabetes, some cancers, and heart disease. A heart-healthy diet will consist of fruits and vegetables, nuts and beans, whole grains, poultry with no skin, fish, and low-fat dairy products.

It Should Benefit the Brain

A lack of vitamin B12 in a person’s diet could lead to memory loss. Eating foods such as meats, milk products, some breakfast cereals, and fish will help maintain brain function. Adding avocados and blueberries has also been shown to be beneficial for brain health.

It Should Help Build Muscles

Throughout a person’s life, their muscles will break down and need to be built up again. This happens when they eat a diet with enough protein, which can be found in yogurt, cheese, lean meats, fish, seafood, milk, and beans. Eggs are also another great source of protein, and they lack the saturated fats that can be found in some meats.

It Should Help Bones

As a person in senior care in San Diego ages, they might lose density in their bones, which could lead to osteoporosis or falls and breaks. Eating a diet rich in calcium will help combat this issue. These include foods such as milk, cheese, and yogurt.

It Should Help Control Weight

As mentioned previously, obesity can be a major problem as a person ages, so being able to control and maintain weight is important. Eating leafy greens can help with this goal because they are loaded with essential nutrients but are low in calories. Some even have cancer-fighting properties, including kale, bok choy, collard greens, and arugula.

Eating the right foods can promote health and prevent certain diseases. It can also help people maintain or lose weight. This can help a person live longer and be healthier as they age.

Moving a Loved One to Assisted Living Is a Good Decision

Making the decision to move a loved one into assisted living or other facility can be incredibly difficult. There are a lot of emotions involved with that decision, and one of them may be guilt. There are lots of reasons for this, but making the decision to get a loved one senior care services in San Diego is a good choice.

One reason a person might feel guilty is that they may feel like they have failed to care for their loved one. However, moving them into a place where they can get help isn’t a failure. It’s a good decision to get them the help they need that the caregiver may not be able to provide. They are continuing to take care of them because they have professionals and access to medical care that they might not have had if they stayed at home.

It’s also possible to continue to visit loved ones while they are being cared for by professionals. The former caregiver also has the ability to talk to the staff if they feel like their loved one isn’t being cared for properly or to ensure that everything is going well. Putting them where they can get help isn’t abandoning them. It’s doing what’s best for them.

A person may not feel like they are doing a good enough job to take care of their loved one and may compare themselves to others who seem to be doing it better. This is not fair because everyone’s situation is different. If others are making comments about the decision, it’s important to look at whether or not those people are doing anything to help (or have done anything in the past) and if they know exactly what is going on or if they are just offering an opinion (which can easily be ignored).

If the caregiver’s health is being compromised or the loved one needs more help than the caregiver can give, then for everyone’s well-being, it’s important to get senior care services in San Diego.

If the loved one’s health declines after being taken to a facility, the previous caregiver may feel guilty that it’s their fault for removing them from the home. This may or may not actually be the case. It’s more than possible that the person’s health was going to decline wherever they were, and being at a facility gives them better access to medical care than being at home would.

Making the decision to get senior care services in San Diego for a loved one is never easy. It’s an emotional time, and lots of things need to be considered. However, the health and well-being of everyone should be looked at and the decision should be made based on access to treatments and keeping everyone safe.

Things to Look for in a Retirement Community

Moving into a retirement community can be an incredibly exciting time in a person’s life. Before making a decision, it’s important to tour some different places and find the one that is right for the individual. When looking for senior care in San Diego, there are a few things to consider, and they are listed below.

Meals

Food is an important part of everyone’s day, and they’ll need to decide if they want to be served three square meals a day or if they want to be able to cook a few on their own. If they are served food, do they want something that’s a little more fancy or served like a cafeteria?

There are a variety of different places that serve food in different ways, and some of them may even allow residents to cook in the homes (some may not). This may seem like a minor decision, but it’s actually quite large. In addition, if there are health concerns or diet restrictions in place, they’ll need to find a community that can cater to those needs.

On-site Amenities and Services

Finding a retirement community that offers more than just a place to live can be beneficial and make life much easier. These amenities and services could include access to hair salons, libraries, laundry services, or gardens. Make a list of the things that are important and would make the community great, then see if there are any in the area that have some or all of the services desired.

Pets

For a lot of people, having pets keeps them young and healthy. If they want their fur babies to go with them into senior care in San Diego, they’ll need to find a place that allows them. Every community is different, so whether or not they allow pets could be a deciding factor in whether a person will want to live there.

Available Help

Not all individuals need help with daily activities, but some do. Finding a place that has on-site assistance when needed is important for peace of mind and to ensure health and safety. Finding a community with needed or wanted help is important.

Transportation

Some people will still have their cars and some won’t. If they are going to keep their vehicles, it will be important to find a place that has easy parking. If they aren’t going to keep their cars, they may need to find a place with a transportation service so that they don’t get stuck at home.

Moving into a retirement community or getting senior care in San Diego can be incredibly beneficial and exciting. It’s a great way to continue to be active and to enjoy life while staying safe.

The Benefits of Reading

There are many reasons to sit down and enjoy a good book. This can be a great pastime for people getting senior care services in San Diego, but there are also benefits included with reading. Below are some of the ways that reading is beneficial (not only for seniors, but for everyone!).

  1. Stress Reduction

Sitting down with a book is a great way for a person to relax and take their mind of their worries and struggles. They have the opportunity to be immersed in another world and let the characters deal with problems for a while. Their problems or worries may not go away, but after spending some time relaxing and reading, they may find a new way to approach their stress.

  1. Better Brain Function

The brain is a muscle, and like other muscles in the body, the more it’s used the stronger it becomes. Using the brain to read will help keep it strong and healthy. It’s never too late to start reading, and there are so many books in the world worth checking out.

  1. Increase Knowledge

It doesn’t matter what age a person is, they can always learn something new, and reading will accomplish that goal. Even if the person doesn’t remember everything they’ve ever read, part of that knowledge will still be deposited into an individual’s brain and give them the ability to overcome challenges.

  1. Increased Empathy

Reading fiction has been shown to increase a person’s ability to be empathetic—especially if they are invested in the characters and the storyline. This is beneficial in life if that person is exposed to new situations, ideas, or beliefs, and they’ll probably be more open-minded and receptive to another’s views.

  1. Sharpen Decision-Making Skills

As humans age, their ability to solve problems, also known as fluid intelligence, declines. Reading helps improve reasoning and analytical power so that seniors have the ability to make decisions and keep their fluid intelligence from slipping completely.

  1. Fall Asleep Faster

Reading a book right before bed helps the brain and body relax and shut down. This is more beneficial than watching TV or playing on a phone because it has been found that the blue light from these devices can impact circadian rhythms.

Reading while getting senior care services in San Diego is beneficial in so many ways, and it’s a task that can be accomplished anywhere. For individuals who have a hard time seeing, there are electronic devices that can change the font size or there are audiobooks available that can be listened to. With a variety of books available, it’s easy to find one (or several!) that will appeal to anyone’s tastes.

Resources for Families with Loved Ones Needing Care

recources-family-with-seniors-sizedCaring for an ailing loved one can be a daunting and overwhelming task, to say the least. Aside from the logistical arrangements of ensuring transportation to doctor’s appointments or rehabilitation activities, there is also the emotional roller coaster of sadness, frustration, tenderness, and nostalgia.

Rest assured, there are resources available to provide support for those caring for an older loved one. Here is a list of just a few of the top resources available to offer guidance, answers, and sometimes just a listening ear.

1) AARP

AARP is an invaluable resource for those entering their Golden Years and for those caring for an elderly loved one. Founded in 1958, AARP now lobbies in Washington on behalf of older Americans and has several affiliate organizations that serve a number of functions. The organization has an entire webpage dedicated to “family caregiving.” There are informational links on health, financial and legal concerns, and how to maintain balance when caring for a loved one, as well as a site with links to local resources, depending on where one is located. The AARP magazine and webpages are also a great resource for information on scams targeting older Americans, as well as up-to-the-minute coverage of political topics and news affecting this demographic.

2) Retirement Communities

Many retirement communities like those in San Diego, California, offer both luxury resort living accommodations and senior care services pertaining to injuries or memory loss. Facility websites include frequently asked questions sections with information not just on that particular facility, but also key things to consider when trying to decide if such a community is the right choice for the loved one in your care. Many facilities have a rich social media presence and are staffed with employees happy to answer questions and provide reassurance in times of uncertainty and decision-making.

3) Eldercare Directory

It’s interesting to note that each state in the U.S. has an Aging Services Division dedicated to providing home and community services to older Americans. These have the goal of allowing for maximum independence. Some offered might include help with household chores, meals delivered to one’s home, health aides, and even transportation to the grocery store and to medical appointments. Some agencies may also provide legal aid or access to mental healthcare and counseling.

4) PBS

It’s not just for Big Bird and Mister Rogers! The Public Broadcasting Service has long been known for national programming that ties in with local community outreach. PBS’s “Caring for Your Parents” programming and subsequent website pages offers a wealth of resources and support systems available, along with information straight from doctors and experts themselves.

 

Keyword: senior care services san diego