Benefits to Encouraging Internet Use in Seniors

August 26th, 2014

The latest Pew Research study showed that seniors over 65-years-old are using the Internet more than ever nowadays. In fact, almost 60% of those over 65 now use the Internet for one reason or another. And, more often than not, the results of seniors getting and staying connected is a positive thing; one that family caregivers and home health care aides alike should get behind.

For one, it allows seniors who live at home, or far away from friends and family, to connect via the various social media on the Internet. For instance, seniors with a Facebook account can share pictures of past memories, or follow along as their children and grandchildren grow up. They can even start conversations on Facebook and talk with friends and family more often.

Also, staying connected can help avoid problems like social isolation, that can have serious impacts on our mental and physical health. When seniors use the Internet, they have all the world’s news and events at their fingertips, and a number of areas built for connecting socially and sharing and discussing the day’s events.

In other words, Internet use not only helps seniors connect with their current social circles more frequently, but also allows them the opportunity to build and grow new ones.

Finally, and possibly one of the more simple, but positive benefits to using the Internet as a senior is the simple fact that reading the news, discovering new hobbies, or connecting socially with friends and family are all activities that help keep senior minds sharp and active; which is important in helping to keep the mind as healthy as possible.

So for the family caregivers, and home health care aides out there, if those you love or are assisting show interest in learning about the Internet, or a desire in increasing their social activeness, there’s a number of reasons to encourage them to log on and get connected.

 

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Person-Centered Care Tips: Creating a “Personhood” Profile

August 22nd, 2014

When a friend or loved one has a dementia-related illness, like Alzheimer’s disease, it can sometimes become difficult to see past the condition. Over time, memories and communication can begin to fade, which is why it is important for family and home health caregivers alike to communicate and learn the most they can about an individual they are assisting as early as possible.

After all, in person-centered care, the more one knows about the friend or loved one, the more the help can be tailored around their unique and individual passions and loves.

We stumbled upon a great tip the other day about creating a “personhood profile” that can be useful for sharing with family and friends assisting a loved one. Think of it as a great tool to speak about who that person is, and what they love, if it becomes difficult for them to communicate.

Essentially, a “this is me”, or “personhood” profile communicates what those with dementia-related illnesses sometimes cannot: An in-depth look into your friend or loved one’s past careers, passions, hobbies, and important and relevant information to their mental and physical care wants and needs. Some relevant information you would want to include in these profiles are: Name, name they liked to be called, a photo, the area they live in, background information (friends, family, loved ones, a brief bio), past careers and hobbies, friend or family contact info, and things that upset them or make them happy.

All of this information can be very beneficial in person-centered care plans, like our Nostalgia Program here at Alliance, by allowing a home health care aide to learn the most about their helping, and thus, create the best care plan possible. Additionally, a quick profile allows new and unfamiliar assistants to become more comfortable with those they’re helping more quickly, and vice-versa.

As always, if you would like to learn more about our person-centered care philosophies, or just want to talk to a trained Care Advisor to learn more about creating profiles, feel free to call us at 317-581-1100, or visit alliancehomehealthcare.net.

 

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