artfulCARE

the art of caring for your aging loved one

Specific Medical Problems

Special Needs; Special Helpers

Your Aging Loved One may have a specific and serious condition or progressive disease.

Diabetes, Parkinson's Disease, heart condition or stroke, Alzheimer's or other dementia, difficulty swallowing (dysphagia,) incontinence, arthritis ... these are a few of many. He may already be in the care of a specialist or two.

A dietician is the best person to ask to help draw up a menu plan to accommodate special nutrition needs.

Incontinence

"Accidents" happen for a variety of reasons. To determine the cause and potential treatment, visit the GP.

Clothes become stained. The best way to clean the garments is to soak them in a mixture of 1 cup of borax and 10 cups of hot water for a few hours, then wash in the machine as usual.

Incontinent supplies (adult diapers) are readily available at pharmacies and other retail outlets.

Support Groups

There are support groups for almost anything you can name. A trip or a phone call to the pertinent office may yield brochures loaded with information and friendly, supportive people to answer your questions.

And you have added a phone number to the appropriate section of The File, correct? You're catching on.

Use your phone book for additional help or ask the GP. In many centers, there are volunteer drivers who take cancer patients to clinics, for example. There are support houses for out-of-town family visiting patients in hospitals. You will find willing and helpful hands when you ask.

Accept help with a smile. "Thank you. You are making life easier for Mom and for me."

Remember ... you are doing your charity stint right now.

A Giggle for you

"I didn't get old on purpose; it just happened. If you're lucky, it could happen to you."

- Andy Rooney