Providing care for aging parents and children at the same time

caring for both children and parents

If you're one of the millions of people caring for both your children and your aging parents, you are part of the so-called "sandwich generation."

Caring for children and parents simultaneously can leave you drained, depressed -- and unhealthy. Empower yourself with knowledge and good health to make the best of a difficult situation:

Plan for the future. Although difficult to address, it's important to discuss such things as living wills, medical power of attorney and even estate planning.

Talk with your children. Discuss the changes taking place and ask for their help and understanding. Reassure them that you are not abandoning them, but you have new responsibilities that may require more of your time and resources.

Take a break every day. Avoid burnout by spending at least a few minutes each day relaxing. Prayer, meditation, or even a short walk can help rejuvenate you.

Delegate. If someone offers to help, take them up on it. Also, hold a family meeting with siblings and extended family to cover topics such as time and financial issues.

Adjust your attitude. The way you perceive a situation will largely determine how stressful that situation is for you. By changing your attitude to a more positive perception, you often can reduce the amount of stress you feel. Set realistic expectations of yourself and your world.

SHOP Amazon's Top 100* Best Selling Vitamins & Nutritional Supplements
+ Free Shipping & Returns on Eligible Items.
(*Amazon's Top 100 list updated hourly.)

Learn to manage time efficiently and focus on improving your communication skills.

Talk with someone who has already been there or take a caregiver training class. You can learn everything from how to properly bathe someone with limited mobility to how to handle medical equipment.

Maintain your health. Eat a balanced diet and don't abandon your exercise routine. Plus, be sure to get at least 7.5 to 9 hours of sleep per night. This is especially important for care- givers who can be drained emotionally, physically and mentally.

Arm yourself with knowledge. A multitude of resources is available for caregivers.

  • Services -- The eldercare.gov web site can help you find local services.
  • Benefits -- At benefitscheckup.org you can find help with any federal, state and local program benefits your relative qualifies for.
  • Assistance programs -- The web site benefits.gov can help you find which government benefits you may be eligible for and provides information on how to apply for assistance.
  • Medicare -- You'll find publications, videos, answers on navigating Medicare and other resources at medicare.gov/caregivers.

In Canada, visit servicecanada.gc.ca for information on available assistance.

Above all, don't be afraid to ask for help. If you feel you are drowning in responsibility or are confused about which steps to take, share your concerns with friends, a therapist or clergyman. Recognize that asking for help is a sign of strength, not of weakness.

Sources include:
Caught Between Your Parents and Your Children, D. Wayne Matthews, Human Development Specialist, North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service.


Boise Tips for Healthy Living...

Medication mix ups and accidents are on the rise.
Here are tips for preventing dangerous medication mishaps.
medication mixups

Over the last decade, many adults and seniors have ended up in the hospital because the medications they expected to help them actually hurt them. Unfortunately, bad reactions to medications are on the rise, according to a report by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Between 1997 and 2008, hospital admissions doubled among Americans aged 45 and older for medication and drug-related conditions. These hospital admissions include the effects of prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) medicines as well as illegal drugs.

The AHRQ blames the increase on three types of medication and drug-related conditions:
  1. Drug-induced delirium, which is general confusion and agitation caused by drugs.
    Common causes are drugs for sleeping, nausea and pain. Elderly patients are more sensitive to medicines than younger adults.
  2. Poisoning or overdose from codeine and other narcotic medicines.
    Bad reactions from narcotic pain medicines are especially common in older adults.
  3. Withdrawal from prescribed medicines or illegal drugs.
    Drug withdrawal occurs when someone suddenly stops or takes much less of a drug after being on it for a long time.

You can lower your chance of problems with your medication. First, don't take medicine that is not prescribed for you. Also, remember that it is not safe to drink alcohol when you take medicine for sleeping, pain, anxiety or depression.

To reduce your chances of complications from medicine, the AHRQ offers this checklist:

  • Bring a list or a bag with all your medicines when you go to your doctor's office, the pharmacy or the hospital.
    Include all prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins and supplements. Remind your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to any medicines.
  • Ask questions.
    Ask your doctor or pharmacist to use plain language. It may also help to write down the answers or bring a friend or relative with you.
  • Make sure your medicine is what the doctor ordered.
    Many drugs look alike and have names that sound alike. Check with your doctor or pharmacist to be sure you have the right medicine.
  • Learn how to take your medicine correctly.
    Read the directions on the label and other paperwork you get with your medicine. Medicine labels can be hard to understand. Ask your pharmacist or doctor to explain anything you do not understand. Are there other medicines, foods or activities (such as driving, drinking alcohol or using tobacco) that you should avoid while using the medicine? For example, ask if "four doses daily" means taking a dose exactly every six hours or just during regular waking hours. Ask what "take as needed" really means.
  • Find out about possible side effects.
    Many drugs have side effects. Some side effects may bother you at first but will get better later. Others may be serious. If a side effect does not get better, talk to your doctor.

Make your medicines work for you, not against you. By taking steps to get the best results from your medicines, you can help prevent problems.


From the Research Desk...

A good mood may boost the brain function
mood and brain function

Columbus, OH - A good mood can help older adults improve their decision-making and working memory, say researchers from Ohio State University.

In the study, half the participants were given a thank you card and two bags of candy to help boost their mood; the other participants did not receive anything. All participants then completed tasks that tested their memory and decision-making. Those given gifts performed better on both tasks than those without gifts.

"Our findings show how simple methods to improve mood can help improve cognitive functioning and decision performance in older adults, just like they do in younger people," said study co-author Ellen Peters.

How TV affects children: Too much TV for kids could lead to psychological problems

Bristol, England - Kids who spend two or more hours watching TV or on the computer are more likely to have psychological problems than kids who don't, according to research from the Centre for Exercise, Nutrition and Health Sciences at the University of Bristol in England. how tv habits effect behaviorThis was true regardless of how much daily exercise the children got.

The study was based on the self-reported TV and computer usage of 1,000 children between the ages of 10 and 11. They also completed a questionnaire which rated their emotional, peer, conduct and hyperactivity problems.

Researchers say that they can't determine if media exposure causes the psychological problems or if troubled youth simply seek out screen time. Study authors suggest that limiting screen time may be important for ensuring children's future health and well-being.

As a side note, The American Academy of Pediatrics' position is to discourage any media time for children under the age of 2; it's better that they be involved in interactive activities. And, though it is likely to be met with resistance, the AAP also suggest limiting older children's TV, video game and computer time to no more than 2 hours per day. (A couple tips they suggest are to hide the remote and allow no TV in the childrens' bedrooms.) It is more beneficial for children, they believe, to be reading, talking or taking part in exercise or outdoor activities.

Low Prices on Best Selling VITAMINS &
SUPPLEMENTS

SHOP NOW AT AMAZON

spacer
Latest Boise health posts:
A Sampling of Today's Health News Headlines
NBC News Health
NBC News Health
NBC News Health
06/23/2017 04:21 PM
Fifth GOP Senator Comes Out Against Health Care Bill
Mitch McConnell intends to put his health care bill up for a full Senate vote next week but now five Republicans have come out against it in the current form.
06/23/2017 03:36 PM
Building Molds Send Toxins Right Into Air
Sick Building Syndrome: Fungi Can Squirt Toxins Directly Into Air, Study Finds
06/23/2017 01:13 PM
Why Medical Groups Hate the GOP Health Care Plans
Mainstream medical groups, from oncologists to pediatricians, are united in their opposition to the Republican health care plan.
06/23/2017 12:09 PM
Dietitian-Approved Frozen Treats Under 200 Calories
Because eyeballing a ½-cup scoop in a pint of ice cream is a serious exercise in willpower.
06/23/2017 09:29 AM
These Three Things May Be Best Hope for Delaying Memory Loss
Few things are really proven to delay memory loss. Here are the best bets.
06/23/2017 08:58 AM
The Surprising Perks of Being an Older Parent
A new study says older dads raise 'geekier' kids, plus five other perks of being an older parent.
06/23/2017 07:16 AM
Key Senate Conservatives Won't Support GOP Health Care Bill Yet
Four key Republican senators announced they will not vote for the GOP health care bill unless changes are made, putting passage of the bill at risk.
06/23/2017 02:58 AM
What Happens to People on Obamacare if a New Health Care Bill Passes?
Lawmakers are debating the future of health care.
CNN.com - RSS Channel - Health
CNN.com - RSS Channel - Health
CNN.com delivers up-to-the-minute news and information on the latest top stories, weather, entertainment, politics and more.
06/23/2017 03:55 PM
Saving the twins: Rehab and health scares for once-conjoined twins

03/17/2017 03:29 PM
Key moments inside the operating room
The surgical team labored for 27 painstaking hours to separate twins Jadon and Anias McDonald. The boys were born joined at the head. The surgery to separate them was rare and complicated.

11/22/2016 12:33 PM
Conjoined twins separated in marathon surgery
After 27 hours of surgery, twin boys Anias and Jadon McDonald -- born joined at the head 13 months ago -- began a new life apart on Friday.

02/07/2017 06:00 AM
How 3-D technology helped separate conjoined twins
On October 13, a surgical team stood over two 13-month old boys who were joined at the head and shared up to 2 inches of brain tissue.

06/23/2017 02:46 PM
Call the librarian: Unlikely heroes of US opioid crisis

06/21/2017 06:07 PM
Missouri files suit against opioid manufactures
Missouri has filed suit against three pharmaceutical companies for allegedly violating the state's Medicare fraud and consumer-protection statutes by "misrepresenting the truth" about opioids, Attorney General Josh Hawley said Wednesday.

06/22/2017 04:33 PM
Shop brews opportunity for people with disabilities
Coffee shops are cool, but in Wilmington, North Carolina, Bitty & Beau's Coffee is known for its warmth.

06/16/2017 04:31 PM
Texas water park takes accessibility to the next level
When the Morgan's Inspiration Island water park opens in San Antonio on Saturday, visitors won't find any wheelchair ramps at one of the park's main attractions: the riverboat adventure.

Health – TIME
Health – TIME
Current & Breaking News | National & World Updates
06/23/2017 04:42 PM
How the Trump Administration Is Reversing Progress on HIV Treatment
As an HIV researcher and clinician, I have seen firsthand the virus’s disproportionate devastation of sexual minorities, the poor and many people of color. Nevertheless, steady research progress during recent years has allowed us to envision and work toward the end of the epidemic. Until recently, our efforts were effectively guided by the first-ever National…
06/23/2017 03:32 PM
Do You Still Need to Worry About Zika?
Last summer, public health experts were on high alert due to the rapid spread of the Zika virus, which has now been proven to cause birth defects and other health problems in infants. Today, experts know far more about the virus than they did at the start of the outbreak. Here’s what you need to…
06/23/2017 02:23 PM
Health Care Bill Could Boot People With Addiction Out of Treatment
The health care bill released by Senate Republicans on Thursday is stoking outrage among mental health and addiction groups for its proposed steep cuts to Medicaid, the government’s largest health insurance program. Medicaid is the single largest payer for mental health services in the United States and provides coverage for millions of Americans with mental…
06/23/2017 01:30 PM
Why Your Bad Memory Can Be a Good Thing, According to Science
You know those people who always boast about having a perfect memory? Maybe they shouldn’t, because having total recall is totally overrated. That’s according to a new paper in the journal Neuron, which concludes that forgetting things is not just normal, it actually makes us smarter. In the new report, researchers Paul Frankland and Blake…
06/22/2017 05:23 PM
4 Ways the Senate Health Care Bill Would Hurt Women
Senate Republicans revealed new legislation—a much-anticipated follow-up to the American Health Care Act passed by the House of Representatives last month—intended to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. The Senate’s version of the bill, called the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017, keeps much of the framework of the ACHA, with a few changes.…
06/22/2017 05:20 PM
Lone Star Tick Bites Are Making Some People Allergic to Red Meat
You already know that ticks pose a threat your health; these bugs, which thrive in the summer, can transmit Lyme disease, Powassan virus and even a rare condition called tick paralysis. If those illnesses aren’t enough to worry about, experts are sounding the alarm about another tick-borne condition that appears to be on the rise.…
06/22/2017 03:01 PM
4 Things to Know About the Senate’s Health Care Bill
The 'Better Care Reconciliation Act' was unveiled today.
06/22/2017 01:15 PM
This Week in Health: Summer Colds, Health Care and Yoga for Pain
It’s officially summer, but the warm weather doesn’t necessarily mean you’re in for three months of good health. This week’s health news revealed why getting a summer bug can feel even more awful than a winter one. There’s also, of course, plenty of health care news to catch up on. Here’s what else caught our…
 
feedback
[email protected]
Copyright 2017 BoiseHealth.com. All rights reserved. rss Subscribe to our RSS
Information provided here should not be relied on to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any condition, disease or illness. Please consult with your physician or health care professional for guidance on any health concern. BoiseHealth.com is a commercial website and is not affiliated with any government agency, university, or private medical center. COMPENSATION DISCLOSURE: This site may be compensated for products promoted here. Read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.