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Tech Aids for Home-Based Caregiving

The next decade promises to bring challenges and opportunities for seniors and their caregivers. As Baby Boomers pass retirement age, they’re joining a growing demographic that will need assistance. The caregiving market is almost 300 billion dollars, and all signs point to it continuing to grow.

Caring for seniors at the home can be challenging. This is particularly the case for people who have restricted mobility or medical complications. However, assistive technology is rising to this challenge. There are more options on the market than ever before, and this tech can support both caregivers and seniors.

Ride Booking Services

Ride booking has become a vital service for people of all ages, and seniors are now joining this trend. These services are especially useful for people who live in the suburbs or countryside and don’t have their own car. It allows the senior or their caregivers to go for groceries, attend theater productions, meet up with friends, and more.

However, not every senior wants to use an app. Lyft and Uber, along with lesser-known companies like GoGoGrandparent, also offer ride booking via phone. It varies by the company, but some of them offer more than just driving services. For instance, some companies will text caregivers when the senior is picked up, with a follow-up text when they arrive at the destination. Options like these help seniors stay independent while also giving caregivers peace of mind.

Smart Home Sensors

These devices are tiny, inexpensive, and blend into the background. They’re also palm-sized powerhouses that quietly monitor and manage the home. You can find sensors that:

turn on the lights when someone enters the room
alert caregivers when the senior leaves the bed
automatically lock the doors at night
shut off stoves and burners
adjust the thermostat
record when the medicine cabinet is opened
alert the authorities if a fire alarm goes off

Most of these sensors can be controlled from a central hub. Once they’re properly set up, they’re easy to manage. The beauty of smart home sensors is that they automate many of the small tasks that fall on a caregiver. This relieves some of the mental weight of caregiving. With these small details handled, a caregiver can focus energy where it’s needed the most.

Medication Tracking Devices

At one end of the scale here are smart phone apps, that may beep when it’s time for medication. They may also have features like showing pictures of which pills are to be taken, which helps seniors who are managing their own medication. Certain apps may take things a step farther, for instance by updating calendars with medical appointments and monitoring blood glucose levels.

However, phone apps aren’t the only option available in this field. You can also find specialized pillboxes. These store and dispense medications and may track when they’re taken. This creates a record which can help doctors monitor how the senior is responding to the medicines.

Medical Alert Systems

There’s been a trend in recent years of consolidating technology into one device. That’s very apparent in medical and life alert systems. Despite the name, many of these devices are capable of much more than simply detecting a medical emergency. These systems can:

record falls
monitor activity levels
track movements via GPS
connect to a response team via two-way voice
remind the wearer to take medications

There are many such systems on the market, available at a wide variety of price points. It’s a good idea to check out medical alert system reviews before buying one. This will help you choose a reliable product with the right features for you.

Videoconferencing and Telemedicine

Going to the hospital for non-urgent tasks like medication updates can be an all-day ordeal. This is especially true for seniors nowadays, as Covid-19 potential puts them at greater risk.

Telemedicine through videoconferencing tech is becoming a widespread and accessible option in many hospital systems. Software like FaceTime, Skype, and Zoom can be used in virtual doctor’s visits. Here, the caregiver and senior can connect with a medical team in real time. It functions just like a visit to the hospital, but with all the convenience and comfort of home.

Virtual Assistants

Virtual assistants like Alexa and Siri act as great hands-free tools for both caregivers and seniors. The voiceactivated commands mean that a caregiver can easily multitask, putting in delivery orders or controlling door locks remotely while they work. Meanwhile, seniors can cue up audio books and music. They can also connect with loved ones through virtual assistants without having to fumble with small buttons.

Mesh Wi-Fi

Several of the assistive technologies listed above depend on a strong and steady Internet signal to function. This can be a tall order, particularly in rural homes and areas with spotty coverage. Mesh Wi-Fi systems use several routers that have been strategically placed around the house. This creates a strong signal in every room, a signal that often extends to the surrounding yard. Samsung, Google and Amazon all offer mesh systems that support a wide variety of assistive tech.

Caring for a senior can be a difficult job. However, there are tech aids on the market that can solve many of the problems that caregivers are juggling. Assistive technology can keep track of complex medication schedules, detect accidents, call for medical help and allow videoconferencing with doctors and more. This new wave of technology takes over some of the tasks of caregiving, freeing up time, energy and quality of life for both caregivers and seniors.

Are you looking for hand sanitizers? Check out Pure Bloom

 

Hand Sanitizer

I have to admit that I have hand sanitizers in all different sizes and scents all over my home and in my car. I feel like I am always squirting some sanitizer on my hands all the time, even when I am at home and have access to soap and water. These days I worry that soap and water might not be enough, even though I scrub my hands so much that they are dried out at this point.

There are so many different hand sanitizers on the market these days, but I have found that some are better than others.

I prefer hand sanitizers that have some moisturizing element to them, to help combat dryness on my skin. I have also found that I prefer spray bottles over squirt bottles. I find that spray bottles are much easier to use and less messy.

I was sent to review a bottle of spray hand sanitizer from a brand called Pure Bloom. Pure Bloom offers beauty and wellness products that contain CBD. If you are not familiar with CBD, it’s short for cannabinoids, which is extracted from cannabis. It does not contain TCH, while is the part of the plant that makes you “high.” CBD is perfectly legal and is used in a variety of ways.

I received one of the brands spray hand sanitizers in “blissful bloom” scent. This hand sanitizer contains 25 mg of organic CBD.

According to the brand;

Keep your hands clean and moisturized with our Organic CBD Hand Sanitizer & Moisturizing Spray.  This powerhouse spray combines the antiseptic power of 80% certified organic ethyl alcohol (hospital grade) with the skin hydrating benefits of full spectrum CBD and other skin-loving ingredients to leave your hands feeling soft and nourished after every use. The soothing floral scent provides calmness and balance during times of stress, uncertainty and anxiousness.

This hand sanitizing spray does leave your skin feeling smooth and soft. I have used mine many times and I have found that is DOES NOT dry out your skin, thankfully.

Initially I was not too keen on the scent (it’s a personal preference), but I have found that with repeated use the scent finally grew on me.

The bottle is small enough to fit in a purse, backpack, or pocket.

I tend to bring the bottle with me when ever I leave my home. Not only do I use it on my hands when I am out and about, but I also use it to spray surfaces I might touch, like shopping cart handles. Having a spray is much more convenient that trying to lug around a package of hand wipes.

Pure Bloom’s hand sanitizer is also available in a citrus scent.

The hand sanitizer spray is certified organic, scientifically formulated, 100% clean. vegan and made in the United States.

So far I am very pleased with this product, and I would consider purchasing it once my current bottle is empty.

Pure Bloom has other beauty and wellness products available, all of which contain CBD.

One product from the brand’s beauty collection are their Glow Getter Beauty Bites.

First-ever 100% natural CBD-Collagen bite for inner beauty.  These delicious CBD beauty bites are packed with bioactive ingredients to help hydrate skin and build collagen for a healthy glow while restoring inner balance. Each fruit-flavored bite contains 25 mg of THC-free CBD and 2000 mg of hydrolyzed collagen peptides.

I was sent a container of the beauty bites to try out.

The bites are available in 15 and 30 count packages.

The bites are gummies that are shaped like a hexagon. They have a fruity flavor. I think they were yummy. I looked forward to taking them each day (one per day).

As far as any noticeable difference with my skin, I didn’t notice much of a change. Perhaps you need to take them long than a month to notice a difference.

These are a bit pricey, but if you are looking for a way to boost your skins natural glow and build collagen, these bites would be ideal for you.

If you are interested in learning more about the hand sanitizer and/or Beauty Bites, visit GetPureBloom.com.

I found the brand on Facebook, but I was not able to find them on other social media platforms.

Kimberly

*I received free product samples to review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way. 

5 Ways You Can Alleviate Joint Less Pain

 

Your bones meet in your joints, and it allows you to move seamlessly. Joints mostly include knees, shoulders, elbows, hips, or anything that connects one bone to another. There can be soreness, aches, and discomfort caused by joint pain. These are not life-threatening, but it’s best to monitor any pain you experience in your joints, whenever it occurs as it can occur regularly or randomly. This can get worse if not appropriately monitored and might cause you to take maintenance medications for joint pain.

What are the Causes?

The common cause of joint pain is arthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and Osteoarthritis (OA) are the most common ones from different kinds of arthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis usually affects women more than men, and osteoarthritis is common in adults over 40 years old. These slowly develop and commonly affect the most used joints in our body, which are knees, hips, hands, and wrists.

Doctors have expressed that most joint pain is considered to be chronic, meaning it is regularly recurring. Joint pain is common and usually doesn’t require a hospital visit, and there are products for pain relief; you can easily buy and use at home. Here are some of the ways are to manage and alleviate joint pain:

1. Stay Active and Exercise

This one might be an odd suggestion given that joint pain inhibits an individual from moving freely and pain-free. However, lack of exercise, or any movement really, will worsen arthritis and muscle atrophy. This doesn’t have to be an intense workout; a moderate, low-impact exercise will do. This will help strengthen your muscles again, improve your balance, and make your joints a little more stable.

Some examples are walking, using a  slow stationary bike, doing yoga, or water aerobics. It’s best to follow a workout routine. If you feel you’re feeling less pain and discomfort, you can adjust your exercises accordingly for an intense physical activity.

It’s also critical to have a healthy weight. If you are on the heavier side, this can cause stress on your joints. It’s best to check your BMI from time to time.

2. Make Stretching A Habit

This isn’t just stretching before and after a workout, but also whenever you’re doing mundane things. This can help you maintain a range of motion in your joints. You can search for a range of motion (ROM) exercises to make a routine, or you can simply start with stretching while seated, and you can use pillows or rolled-up towels to adjust your range of motion.

3. Using CBD Infused Products

CBD, short for cannabidiol, is the ingredient found in the cannabis plant or also known as the hemp plant. Contrary to the controversy, CBD is non-psychoactive. This will not get you high, unlike the ones that contain THC, which is the one that causes euphoria. CBD has many health benefits for minor health problems and serious medical issues, pain relief being one of them.

CBD infused products can be ingested or applied to your skin, where your muscles and joints are painful; this can relieve any discomfort. Multiple studies have been conducted that show substantial evidence of CBD alleviating pain, inflammation, and swelling, you can look at this review to further know more about its benefits.

Also, if you feel stressed due to the discomfort you’re experiencing, there are CBD infused vitamins, foods, and drinks that can help in decreasing your stress levels. The most potent form of CBD products is the tinctures, you can just put a small drop of it under your tongue, and you’re good to go.

4. Topical Pain Relievers

Over the counter topical pain relievers, also known as topical NSAIDs, are also another choice; these are in the form of creams, patches, and gels. When looking for these products, ensure that diclofenac sodium, menthol, capsaicin, salicylate, or lidocaine are included in the product. It helps to alleviate the pain by preventing transmissions of nerve impulses, and it reduces the inflammation of the joints, stiffness, and swelling.

5. Oral Medication

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications can be prescribed by your doctor and are mostly available over the counter. Some examples are ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) or naproxen (Aleve). These reduce inflammation and alleviate pain, as well. On the other hand, cautiously take aspirin and Tylenol as they have a blood-thinning component and can lead to kidneys and liver complications.

Conclusion

If you are experiencing joint pain, there are numerous ways to alleviate the discomfort it brings. Options include regular exercise, stretching, using CBD infused products, topical creams and gels, and over-the-counter medications. If your problem persists and there is still extreme redness and swelling, it’s best to see a doctor to rule out what causes your joint pain.

CBD product sales increase due to the COVID-19 pandemic

 

When is this pandemic going to be over with once and for all? It’s gone on way too long. To think that there could be another outbreak in the fall makes me sick to my stomach.

I have left our home only a handful of times (literally) since March 12, 2020. That means for the past 12+ weeks (WEEKS!) I haven’t seen much except the four walls in our living room. Sigh… I do get outside, but only to sit on our balcony which overlooks the parking lot. It’s not exactly a spectacular view that anyone would be envy of.

At this point I only go outside for a few minutes of sun to get some Vitamin D. I’m not a fan of sun or heat, so as time goes on (summer) and the weather gets more hot and humid, I’ll just hide in our condo with the AC cranked and the curtains closed (exactly how it is as I write this).

The whole pandemic has brought stress levels (not just my own) to an all new high. Stress, anxiety, depression, loneliness, lack of exercise, unhealthy eating… the list goes on. Don’t get me wrong, there are some positive things that have happened due to the pandemic, such as appreciating nurses, doctors, first responders and teachers more. Our condo hasn’t been this clean and organized in “forever” since I have nothing else to do.

Did you know that the pandemic has increased the sales of CBD products?

According to a recent article;

If you would like to read more of the article, you can find it here.

All of the negative emotions that cause people to seek out CBD related products are the feelings that many people are feeling right now.

If you are not familiar with CBD, it’s short for cannabidiol, a chemical compound found in marijuana. It’s completely legal because it does not contain TCH, which is the compound that makes you get “high.” CBD does NOT make you “high” at all.

Some people swear by CBD products. I belong to a few groups on Facebook, and many times I have seen people posting positive experiences with CBD products. I don’t necessarily think they work for everyone, but for some they have positive results.

There are so many CBD companies and products popping up all the time. You have to find out how good their CBD products are. They can say they are 100% CBD products, but there is no way of knowing. That is why you need to seek out reputable brands.

I have tried several different brands over the past year or so. Most recently I was sent to review some CBD oil from Vitagenne. The brand sent me to review their CBD Hemp Oil (1500 mg).

Vitagenne CBD products are certifed by the U.S. Hemp Authority.

The U.S. Hemp Authority Certification Program is the hemp industry’s initiative to provide high standards, best practices and self-regulation, giving confidence to consumers, regulators and law enforcement that hemp-derived products are safe and legal.

According to the brand, their CBD Hemp Oil;

  • Helps Support Calmness for Greater Focus
  • Assists With Countering Everyday Stress
  • 99% Pure CBD Isolate
  • CO2 Extracted & 3rd Party Tested for Purity
  • Free of Harmful Chemicals or Compounds

Their CBD Hemp Oil is available in three different “strengths,” 500 mg, 1500 mg, and 3000 mg. The price ranges from $34.99, $74.99, and $129.99, respectively. 

I should mention that I have tried (and use) CBD products. I use them mostly to help my mind calm down at night so I can get to sleep (thinking too much about things keeps me up at night). I also use it to help take the edge off pain I have in my right shoulder (I need surgery, but it’s been put off for two months). I also suffer from diabetic neuropathy and some people have told me that taking CBD helps make the condition a bit more bearable. The jury is still out on that one (so far nothing has helped the neuropathy).

I prefer edibles and gummies over CBD oils. I’d have to say that about 75% of the CBD oils I’ve tried over the last year or so just taste gross and I am reluctant to use them. I have tried flavored ones, but they are no better.

Vitagenne sent me their oil to review. I was actually pleasantly surprised. The oil did not taste that bad. I didn’t dread taking it like other oils. It’s still an oil, but better than many others.

To use, simply place a dropper full under your tongue (sublingual) and hold it there for a few seconds (I try and hold it there for about 20 seconds, but you can hold it there more or less). Then you can swallow it.

So far I’d like to say that my experience with this products has been favorable. The taste is OK (it’s flavorless, which helps), and it does help to take the “edge” off, especially at night when I am trying to turn my mind off to relax so I can fall asleep. I haven’t noticed a difference in my shoulder pain or neuropathy. I do think it helps me feel calmer and less frazzled.

If CBD oil is not your thing, Vitagenne does sell capsules, gel capsules (for sleep), and a cream to help with sore muscles.

If you are interested in learning more about the Vitagenne brand and their products, visit Vitagenne.com. The brand is also on social media.  Those links are found on the bottom of their website.

Do you take a CBD product, or have you in the past? If so, what has been your experience? Feel free to comment and share your thoughts.

Kimberly

*I received a free product to review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way. 

Avoiding the Hidden Dangers of Cosmetic Surgery

 

Cosmetic surgeries are one of the most common surgical procedures in the world today. Cosmetic plastic surgeries are also one of the safest and complication-free operations done, provided they are carried out by qualified surgeons, at certified cosmetic surgery clinics.

Be sure to check to see if any of the surgeries are covered by insurance. For examples, check Aetna Medicare supplement plans 2021, or your current health issuance plans. Please know that cosmetic surgery is an not often covered by insurance.

However, these types of surgeries can become complicated and pose risks to your skin, appearance and general health if not handled by qualified professionals. The prevalent risk factors depend upon your health history and medical past, and on the type of cosmetic procedure you are getting.

Here are a few things that you absolutely be careful about before you decide to follow through with a cosmetic surgery. Both mental stress and anxiety and physical complications are associated with the common but hidden risks of cosmetic surgeries. These steps will be beneficial in minimizing both kinds of risks.

Choosing the Right Medical Team

There is quite a lot of pressure on you to choose the right surgeon and it can sometimes be difficult to find someone you can trust with the procedure. As your life and appearance lies in their hands, make sure your surgeon is experienced and have good reviews. It is best to know the details about the doctor who is going to operate you. Find what his exact medical training and surgical qualifications are.

One of the best ways to eliminate the confusion and tension of choosing the right medical team for your cosmetic surgery is to visit any reputed cosmetic surgery clinic in your city which is headed or founded by qualified cosmetic surgeons. A good clinic will have all the necessary back up in the unfortunate event of any complications. For example, if you are opting for an eyelid surgery in Perth, you can visit reliable cosmetic surgeons such as Absolute Cosmetics – an established and licensed clinic with over 20 years of experience and a team of highly qualified and experienced cosmetic surgeons.

Understand the Procedure in Detail

While doctors are the experts in this matter, it is equally important for you to understand the details and the subsequent consequences of the surgical procedure you are undergoing. This will eliminate the risk of any misunderstanding and building-up of undue expectations.

Condition Your Approach

You should keep in mind that though cosmetic plastic surgery is a great tool to enhance your appearance, any kind of surgery poses the same risks and trauma to the body. Approach cosmetic surgery in a way that you consider this as a serious, life-altering procedure. This is a great way to prepare yourself against any risks that might be missed otherwise.

Risks associated with cosmetic surgery often depend on the type of surgery you are opting for and your present health conditions. It is best to rely on the advice and services of reputed and qualified surgeons to eliminate the hidden dangers of cosmetic surgery.

Things that you’ll do differently post-pandemic?

 

Is your state already opening up during the pandemic as it winds down? I know some states have started to open up. Some more so than others. Here in New York, all but New York City has started on “phase one” of reopening.

I can only hope and pray that we can return to some kind of “normal.” I know that some things might change, but I hope that most things stay the same.

Is there something you will be doing differently post-pandemic?

I work in an after school program. Well… that is I DID work in an after school program. I am currently furloughed. I guess my job depends on what school will be like in the fall. Will there be more online classes? Will the school day hours be cut? I wish I had a “magic ball” so I could see into the future to see what school will be like in a few months. I can only guess that things will be different to some degree to keep children and their families safe from a second wave of the COVID-19 virus (I heard there could be a second one).

I think some teleconferences with doctors are appropriate, especially if it’s a follow up visit where no physical tests (such as blood tests) need to be taken. For initial visits I would think a face-to-face meeting would be best.

Meeting with a therapist or counselor online would seem appropriate, such you are more so talking than being physically examined. This is a great article in regards to online counseling and therapy – https://www.betterhelp.com/advice/counseling/is-telephone-counseling-therapy-appropriate/

I’m all for supporting small businesses, and I will continue to do so whenever possible. I would prefer to order ahead of time and continue with curbside pick-up, if possible. At least for a while until there is a vaccine available. I will also continue shopping online as well (I think me and Amazon are on a first name basis now… ha ha).

As much as I’d like to get a hair cut, I think I’ll hold off for a long time. I can trim my bangs when needed. When I am able to return to work, I’ll worry about a hair cut then. I’m also certain that hair salons will be extremely busy for the first month or two when they open. There are a lot of people in dire need of hair cuts, as well as those who took it upon themselves to cut their own hair and need it fixed. My son is one of those people who couldn’t leave well enough alone. He decide to trim his own hair and messed up. Now he has a funky looking Mohawk (no kidding!).

I don’t think I’ll be going to the mall anytime soon, will you? That to me sounds unsafe. Not only that, I’m not a fan of going to the mall. I only go there if I need something, or to go to the movies.

Going to the movies is another concern of mine. My husband and I usually go to matinees, which are less crowded. Maybe that won’t be so bad. I guess we’ll see about that one. There is only one movie I can think of that I really want to see, A Quiet Place 2. We don’t mind streaming movies on Netflix, Hulu, FandangoNow and Amazon Prime.

We’ve never been one to hit up popular tourist spots. We had planned on visiting the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island this summer, but we can wait until next summer if need be. It’s not like those places are going anywhere. We’ll be happy just to walk around Cold Spring, N.Y. and do some antiquing. We also don’t mind going hiking and strolling around local parks.

I’m very much looking forward to hanging out with family and friends. I’ve been dying to visit my relatives in Pennsylvania. My husband and I spent the night at my cousins house back in September and we had a blast. We played a card game called Cards Against Humanity (this is NOT a “family friendly” game), then watched a horror movie in the dark. It was a lot of fun.

I would think hanging out with family and close friends would be safe enough. I’d like to think they would be around others if they knew it was safe to do so.

What we wouldn’t do for a barbecue right now!

We’re still “on the fence” when it comes to masks. Even if they are no longer required, we might wear them a little longer. Hopefully others will too so that we don’t look dorky.

What about you? What things do you plan on doing differently post-pandemic? I would very much love to hear your thoughts on this. Please leave a comment and share your personal thoughts about this subject.

Kimberly

*I have partnered with BetterHelp to bring you this information. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way.