Thursday, October 25, 2018

Is Your Loved One’s Care Headed in the Right Direction? Part 4

By Carrie Vittitoe
Illustration by Brittany Granville

The terminology surrounding senior care can be confusing. What’s the difference between assisted living and skilled nursing? What exactly is independent living? The industry happens to be in the midst of rebranding continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs) as life plan communities, which may further contribute to the general public’s confusion.

Is Your Loved One’s Care Headed in the Right Direction? Part 3

By Carrie Vittitoe
Illustration by Brittany Granville

The terminology surrounding senior care can be confusing. What’s the difference between assisted living and skilled nursing? What exactly is independent living? The industry happens to be in the midst of rebranding continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs) as life plan communities, which may further contribute to the general public’s confusion.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Taking the Edge Off of Paranoia

By Brittani Dick


Like any mental condition, paranoia is debilitating to both the person diagnosed, as well as their caregiver(s). If you suspect your loved one may be suffering from paranoia, there are several signs to look for, according to Dr. Laura Morton, director of the Division of Geriatric Medicine at UofL. “In a geriatric patient, the symptoms will be sudden and new,” she states. The patient may suddenly become suspicious of others. They might believe someone is stealing their money, hiding things from them, trying to hurt them, or trying to take advantage of them.

If your loved one is suffering from paranoia you might be wondering what caused this condition in the first place. Is this a condition that could have been avoided with a lifestyle change? Do genetics play a role?

According to Dr. Morton, mood disorders, cognitive impairment, and medication changes are a few potential causes of paranoia. She also mentions the importance of consulting the primary care physician (PCP) first to rule out any medical conditions, such as an infection, that could be contributing to paranoia. Major life stressors and changes can also cause a person to suffer from paranoia.

To get a patient’s paranoia under control, Dr. Morton stresses the importance of finding the cause and treating it first. Non-medicinal means of treatment are preferred, but pharmaceutical medications can be beneficial if the first route is not successful. If the patient is diagnosed with a mood disorder, such as depression, that is contributing to his/her paranoia, anti-depression medications can be prescribed. If the patient is diagnosed with schizophrenia, for example, antipsychotic medications can be prescribed.

 Dr. Morton offers a host of ideas outside of medication that may help the patient cope with paranoia. “Some patients enjoy stuffed animals and baby dolls,” she says. “Pictures of family members, schedules, and routines may also help.” Other ideas include: music, robotic pets, and limiting loud noises.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Making Holiday Meals Enjoyable for Your Loved One

By Rachel Reynolds

Holiday meals can be both wonderful and hectic. Honoring a loved one’s need for quiet as well as connection is key for success. “Sometimes the chaos of the day is too much for someone with physical or cognitive issues,” says Becky Beanblossom, president of Home Instead Senior Care. Often saying hello to everyone and eating amounts to a full day for a loved one, and it’s best to let them retreat or go home early if they need to, she says. Encouraging them to help plan the menu is also a way to ensure that there will be food available that they can digest. “Just remember, forcing someone to stay when they feel uncomfortable or anxious is just asking for hurt feelings or conflict,” Becky says.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Spend a Delightful Afternoon Dining Near the River

By Lucy Pritchett
Photos by Melissa Donald


Lunch Plus One is a simple outing to enjoy with a friend or visiting relatives or guests. What better way to celebrate autumn than dining while watching the Ohio River roll by and then taking a scenic drive along its banks.

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Three Places to Go that May Help You Live Longer

By Mark Kaelin

Social isolation increases your risk of Alzheimer’s, hypertension, cognitive decline, coronary artery diseases, and depression. Unfortunately, maintaining social connections as you age is challenging as mobility issues, caregiver responsibilities, changes in driving status, and economic issues can interfere. However, there are programs to help.

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Is Your Loved One’s Care Headed in the Right Direction? Part 2

By Carrie Vittitoe
Illustration by Brittany Granville


The terminology surrounding senior care can be confusing. What’s the difference between assisted living and skilled nursing? What exactly is independent living? The industry happens to be in the midst of rebranding continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs) as life plan communities, which may further contribute to the general public’s confusion.
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