Senior Care – How to Provide Elderly Independence

Healing An Ingrown Toenail On Your Own

Posted by on 6:19 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Healing An Ingrown Toenail On Your Own

While ingrown toenails are a fairly common condition, they can quickly become very painful and can even cause walking difficulties. The good news is that there are several things that can be done to treat an ingrown toenail in the comfort of your own home. Soak in Warm Water One very effective method to aid in healing an ingrown toenail is to soak your foot in warm water. This can be done several times throughout the day to relieve swelling and tenderness in the toe. You may also choose to sprinkle Epsom salt in the water as it can also help with swelling. Epsom salt contains Magnesium Sulfate and can be found in almost all drug stores. Take Pain Relievers Many over-the-counter pain medications can offer some relief from ingrown toenails. Both Acetaminophen and Ibuprofen can be taken to relieve pain; however, Ibuprofen is more effective at reducing swelling. If you plan to take pain medications regularly, be sure to alternate between Acetaminophen and Ibuprofen as they are metabolized differently and this will prevent you from taking too much of one or the other. Use Antibiotic Cream There are many kinds of antibiotic cream that are available over-the-counter.  Applying one of these creams to the area can be very effective in preventing infection in the toe. Once the cream is applied, wrap the toe in a bandage so that the cream will stay on the area and not cause a mess. Prop the Edge of the Toenail Up To help the nail grow properly above the skin, you may find it helpful to prop the ingrown edge up. This should be done with clean pieces of cotton or dental floss. Do not place anything sharp under the edge of the nail as this may cause further irritation. Wear Open Shoes If possible, you should wear shoes with an open toe. This will prevent the toenail from growing further into the skin. If it is not possible to wear open-toed shoes, be sure that you wear shoes that fit properly or are even a bit loose in the toe area. Ill-fitting footwear is one of the most common causes of ingrown toenails.  When to Seek Medical Attention After trying these remedies and if you do not notice improvement, you should ask a doctor or foot specialist, such as those at Lincoln Park Podiatry. You should also seek their advice if you notice any worsening of symptoms or at the first sign of infection. If you have diabetes, you should speak to a doctor right away as your condition places you at higher risk for complications.  While ingrown toenails can be very uncomfortable, remember that they are relatively easy to treat even without a doctors...

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Tips For Dealing With Lower Back Pain

Posted by on 4:37 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Tips For Dealing With Lower Back Pain

Lower back pain is fairly common because it can result from twisting your back while lifting or from doing strenuous activity that strains your back. Pain from a muscle strain can take weeks to go away, and that can make you wonder if the pain is from something else such as a compressed nerve or a bad disc. Lower back pain has many causes and different treatments. Here are some tips for dealing with this condition. Uncover The Cause The first thing you should do is find out why you’re having pain. A visit to the doctor is in order if your pain is very bad and it comes on suddenly. You should also visit the doctor if the pain is mild but lingers for several weeks. Your doctor can tell from your description of the pain and by taking diagnostic tests what is going on. Things to rule out are nerve compressions that cause pain to radiate down your legs, a degenerated disc in your spine, muscle strain, and organ problems such as a kidney infection. Once the cause is known, specific treatment can be undertaken. Begin With Lifestyle Changes You’ll probably need to make a few changes to be more comfortable with your back pain. It may be aggravated by sitting too long or standing too long. You’ll need to change your habits at work and at home. Take a step stool to work so you can alternate standing with one foot elevated to relieve back pressure. If you do a lot of lifting at work, have your doctor or physical therapist teach you the best way to lift and bend so your back is protected. If you sit all day in an office, adapt your chair so it is ergonomic and supports your back. Be sure the chair fits your body so your feet rest flat on the floor. Alternate standing and sitting as often as possible throughout the day. Exercise To Strengthen Your Back While you’ll initially want to rest to allow your injury to heal, you should stay active when you have back pain so your back doesn’t get stiff and sore. When you’re dealing with an episode of acute back pain, your doctor may refer you to a physical therapist so you can begin a program of progressive exercises that stretch and strengthen the muscles in your back. Strong muscles support your spine and help prevent further injuries while you work and play. Stretching exercises help your spine stay flexible. Doing exercises the right way is important so you don’t cause further damage. Supervision from a health professional or trainer is a good idea. Learn How To Relax When you’re tense or depressed, you can hold the tension and pain in your muscles, including the ones in your lower back. Releasing the tension through gentle massage can help. Also taking yoga classes and learning to meditate may benefit your back pain because they relax you overall. In a relaxed state, you are better able to manage pain and may even experience less pain than when you are sad or anxious. Try Physical Treatments Pain from a muscle strain can be intense, especially when your muscles spasm. Place a heating pad or hot water bag on your back to increase blood flow and reduce...

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Three Surprising Threats To Your Cardiovascular Health

Posted by on 4:06 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Three Surprising Threats To Your Cardiovascular Health

When people discuss ways of managing cardiovascular health, you would think it’s all about eating right and exercising. It’s true that these are some of the best paths to a healthy heart, but they are not enough. There are other threats to your heart that you should be aware of and avoid. Some of the surprising ones are discussed below: Noise Apparently, loud noises aren’t just bad for your ears – they can affect your heart too. It seems that the effect is there because noise leads to stress. Your body then produces abundant stress hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline. Too much of these hormones can lead to stroke, heart failure and hypertension. One surprising thing is that though the effect is felt both during the day and at night, it is worse at nighttime. What’s more, your heart is still affected by the noise even after you have become accustomed to the noise and no longer hear it. Therefore, the next time you are moving house, opt for one in a quieter neighborhood. Inadequate Sleep Apart from noise, inadequate sleep is another surprising thing that can lead to heart health deterioration. According to the National Sleep Foundation, the effect is there regardless of your smoking or exercise habits. In particular, sleeping less than six hours every night doubles your risk of stroke and heart attack as compared to those who sleep for between six to eight hours. The exact cause of the effect is not known, but there are several theories. One of these is that the lack of sleep interferes with your heart’s biological processes such as metabolism. It also worsens existing heart conditions such as inflammation. Sitting Sitting for prolonged periods is also bad for your heart; it increases your risk of developing a heart attack. Surprisingly, the effect is there even if you do exercise regularly. Those who sit for more than 11 hours daily are the most affected. Aga One hypothesis attributes the effect to the level of fats and sugars in your blood. Apparently, your muscles do not burn as much fat when sitting as it does when you are upright. It is also possible that the reduced blood flow that comes with sitting for extended periods may also contribute to the problem. These are just three examples of things that may affect your heart’s health. It just goes to show that you shouldn’t assume that you are healthy just because you are eating well and exercising. This underscores the need for following your doctor’s advice to the letter; they have the latest information to keep you healthy. For more information, check with companies like Cardiology Associates Of Schenectady...

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How Vision Therapy Can Help Binocular Vision Disorder

Posted by on 11:24 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How Vision Therapy Can Help Binocular Vision Disorder

Binocular vision disorder is when a person is not able to sustain the movements and focus of the eye that are needed to look for details at a long distance for an extended period of time. This can be a problem because it is not able to be fully treated with glasses, since it is primarily a muscle problem. It will be just as difficult to look at a long distance for more than a few seconds with glasses as it is without. One way to treat binocular vision disorder is to utilize vision therapy. There are a few different ways that vision therapy can help treat vision binocular vision disorder. 1. Strengthens the Muscles in the Eye The first way that vision therapy can help binocular vision disorder is by helping the person suffering strengthen the muscles in his or her eye. There are a number of ways to get this to happen. One is to cover the eye that is strong and force the person to rely on the eye that is weak, causing the eye to get stronger with more frequent use. Another option is to have the person hold long distance vision for as long as possible and try to make that time longer each day. 2. Improves Depth Perception A person that is suffering from binocular vision disorder will often have a difficult time being able to appropriately determine depth. This can lead to problems with eye hand coordination, a lack of ability to play sports or even video games, and a general inability for a person to navigate the world around him or her. This person will go into a vision therapist’s office once or twice a week in order for the doctor to help them increase their depth perception through practice. As a person’s eye strengthens, he or she will start to notice depth markers that he or she may have never seen before. The doctor will be able to help that person identify these markers and practice using this information practically through exercises where he or she guesses the where an object is located spatially and then checks to see how close he or she was.  Vision therapy for binocular vision disorder ordinarily takes a minimum of 10 to 12 hours of the person being in the office receiving therapeutic treatment. For more information about how you can make the most out of this time visit a website...

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How Can You Restore The Youthful Appearance Of Your Hands?

Posted by on 12:04 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How Can You Restore The Youthful Appearance Of Your Hands?

Most anti-aging beauty products are targeted for use on your face and neck, claiming to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles or eliminate discoloration or age spots. However, your hands are often neglected by cosmetic companies — and even if the skin on your face and neck looks great due to years of cremes and masks, your hands may begin to give away your true age. What can you do to restore a more youthful appearance to one of the most used parts of your body? Read on for several treatments that may be able to help you turn back the clock. Sclerotherapy If you have spider veins or thick varicose veins on the backs of your hands, you may benefit from sclerotherapy. As you age, the collagen fibers that plump up your skin to give it a youthful appearance begin to degrade, causing skin to become thinner and saggier. This, combined with weaknesses in the vein walls that can lead to lumpiness, can result in extremely prominent spider veins on hands, visibly aging your entire appearance. Sclerotherapy is performed by injecting a salty solution into the offending veins. This solution irritates the cells lining these veins, causing them to form scar tissue that will block blood flow. (This is harmless — there are so many blood vessels in your hands that eliminating some surface veins won’t affect circulation.) As blood flow to and through the vein is phased out, the vein will “die,” receding back into your body and eventually being eliminated as waste. When a vein is treated with sclerotherapy, it’s gone permanently, so although you may develop additional spider veins in the future, your treated veins won’t recur. Laser treatment for age spots Everyone is born with a certain amount of melanin (or coloring pigment) in their skin. Over time, particularly with sun exposure, the cells that make up your top layer of skin become less dense, and melanin is more prone to pooling in one section of your skin rather than evenly distributing itself. This can cause the mild discolorations you may refer to as “age spots” or “liver spots.” Fortunately, this discoloration is now easily treated by a quick laser procedure. During laser treatment, a technician will aim a concentrated beam of light toward the spots you wish to remove. This light targets the excess melanin, disintegrating it and restoring a smooth, natural appearance to your skin. This procedure is relatively painless, and many have described the sensation as having rubber bands snapped against their...

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How To Prevent Psoriasis Flareups

Posted by on 10:55 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Prevent Psoriasis Flareups

Psoriasis is a skin condition that is categorized by scaly, red and itchy patches. These patches are not just unsightly to look at; they can also be quite painful. Although there is no cure for this condition, it can be managed. Here are some helpful tips on preventing psoriasis flare-ups. Use a Humidifier A humidifier adds moisture to the air, so it is great for people with psoriasis. If you put a humidifier in the middle of your bedroom, it can keep your skin moist, which will reduce psoriasis flare-ups. Be Careful in the Sun If you have psoriasis, you have to be even more careful about exposing your skin to the sun. If you get a sunburn, it can make your psoriasis a lot worse. Before you step foot outdoors, do not forget to put sunscreen on your skin.  Reduce Stress Since stress can trigger psoriasis symptoms, it is important to relieve your anxiety. Some of the best ways to reduce stress include taking a hot bath, engaging in yoga, meditating and going for a long walk.  Do not Pick at Your Skin When you itch, it can be tempting to pick at your skin. However, scratching your skin can make your psoriasis worse and may even cause an infection. When your skin itches, try applying a moisturizer to the area. Avoid Junk Food Junk food is not just bad for your waistline; it can also lead to psoriasis flare-ups. Unhealthy foods, such as pizza, chips and burgers, contain a lot of saturated fats, sugars and starches, which can all lead to inflammation of the skin. If you eat more wholesome foods, like vegetables, chicken, brown rice and fish, your psoriasis symptoms may improve.  Moisturize Your Skin When you have psoriasis, it is even important to moisturize your skin regularly. If your skin becomes too dry, it can lead to flareups. Do not forget to apply a thick and creamy moisturizer to your skin every day. It is best to apply this moisturizer after you have taken a bath or shower. Psoriasis is not always easy to live with, but you can manage it. If you follow these helpful tips, your skin will look and feel better. However, if you still get flare-ups all the time, you should make an appointment to see your doctor right away. A clinician can help determine why your psoriasis symptoms keep getting...

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Three Reasons The Treadmill Is The Perfect Post-Injury Machine

Posted by on 11:31 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Three Reasons The Treadmill Is The Perfect Post-Injury Machine

So, you’re ready to run again after a lengthy battle with an injury. Before hitting the pavement, you may want to consider the benefits of hopping on the treadmill instead. It’s easy to regulate your pace After you’ve been away from the sport for a few weeks or months, it may be tempting to dive back in at your pre-injury intensity levels. It takes hard work and dedication to build speed, and it can be hard to stomach even the smallest of setbacks. However, time off does cause a drop in fitness levels. It can take six weeks to recover the fitness lost during just two to four weeks off running. Treadmills offer an effective way to run at speeds your body can handle. Set the pace on machine to a speed that feels easy, and go. Outside, it’s all too common to look at your watch and realize you’re running much faster than intended. The treadmill, on the other hand, is going to keep you at your desired pace. You can run for a set length of time Depending on how long you’ve been away from running, you might be unsure of how much mileage your body can realistically handle. To help reduce the risk of re-injuring yourself, you may want to set a time limit for your first few runs back, instead of focusing on mileage. Instead of running four miles, maybe just try to run for 30 minutes. Many treadmills allow you to select your goal time. Once you hit that time, the machine automatically transitions to cool down mode. This can be especially beneficial if you’re prone to spacing out during your runs, or if you just don’t feel like babysitting the clock. You can stop when needed When you’re coming back from an injury, it’s incredibly important to stop if you feel any injury-related pain. Say you’re ready to start running again after a bout with Achilles tendonitis. Two miles into your run, however, you feel that familiar twinge of pain in your ankle– you’re not as recovered as you thought you were. Unfortunately, you’re now two miles from your starting point. Continuing to run might cause more damage to the Achilles tendon, but you have to get home somehow, right? On the treadmill, if you feel pain you can simply stop. There’s no need to worry about walking or running home, because you’re already there. During those first few post-injury runs, just knowing you can stop whenever you need to can be a huge relief. Treadmills are a great option for anyone recovering from an injury. If you are interested in owning a treadmill of your own, contact a business such as Gym Outfitters...

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Brew Cafe-Quality Coffee With A Water Filter

Posted by on 10:14 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Brew Cafe-Quality Coffee With A Water Filter

You love coffee — especially good coffee. Every morning, you grind beans fresh, carefully arrange them in your gold-plated pour-over filter and gently pour 200-degree boiling water over them from the spout of a gooseneck kettle. Even with all this care, though, you can’t replicate the same quality that you get at your local cafe. For true cafe-quality coffee, you need to use filtered water: Minerals are in Your Water Without a home water filter, minerals in your tap water will interfere with the flavors and aromatics of your coffee. Citing a U.S. Geological Survey, the Chicago Tribune reports that 85 percent of U.S. homes have hard water. Unless you’re one of the lucky 15 percent, you have minerals in your water that will interfere with brewing coffee. Even if you one of the few people who have soft water, your water is likely treated with fluoride. Although you might not be able to pick out the impurities in your coffee, they can affect its flavor. Coffee is complex, containing over 1,000 aromatic compounds according to the Royal Society of Chemistry. Even a trace amount of a mineral could interfere with your coffee’s flavor. Water Filters Treat Your Water The easiest way to remove minerals from your tap water is by installing a whole-house water filter. A water filter that’s specifically designed for your part of the country will eliminate the minerals that make your water hard. A whole-house filter is preferable to one that attaches to your kitchen sink, because whole-house models filter out more than smaller filters that rely on activated carbon cartridges. As FluorideAlert.org explains, only reverse osmosis, deionizing and activated alumina filters remove fluoride. Whole-House Filters are Better than Bottles Of course, you could use bottled water that has no minerals or fluoride in it. Over time, though, this will prove more expensive than installing a water filter. HomeAdvisor’s data shows that the average cost of installing a whole-house water filter is $4,200. Alternatively, a single bottle of water averaged $1.21 in 2013, according to the International Bottled Water Association. In the course of a year, relying on bottled water would cost $441.65. Within 10 years, you would spend more on bottled water than a water filter. For coffee worthy of being served in a cafe, you need the same equipment that coffee shops use. If you already have all the coffee gear, the only thing holding you back from making truly exceptional coffee may be a water filter. Consider investing in a whole-house filter, and enjoy the many fine cups that will follow. To learn more, contact a company like Hague Quality Water of Kansas City Inc. with your...

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A Parent’s Guide To Understanding Pediatric Facial Scar Revision

Posted by on 4:02 am in Uncategorized | 0 comments

The face that you child has may be precious no matter what, but if an injury or illness leaves them with an unsightly scar, it can cause a great deal of concern for their future outlook and their self confidence. Even though small scars will usually diminish in visibility as your child grows, large scars may require facial scar revision to correct. If this is a form of facial plastic surgery that is recommended to you for your child, there is no question that you will have some concerns. Here is your guide to understanding pediatric facial scar revision. Is facial surgery the only form of treatment that can help diminish the sight of a large scar for a child? Facial surgery is considered a last resort when it comes to scar revision at any time, especially with children. This is because surgery will involve anesthesia, which can always create more risks. Some of the other forms of scar revision may include: Dermabrasion therapy to remove small layers of the scar at a time Injected medications to decrease the size of a scar Laser removal of the affected skin cells Will a skin graft be necessary? The child’s skin is usually much more supple and elastic than an adult. Therefore, it is possible that enough skin can be stretched over the surgical site without having to rely on grafted skin from other parts of the body. However, in extreme cases when the scar is quite large and removal would leave a large opening, a skin graft may be necessary. How painful is surgical facial scar revision? There will be some pain associated with the facial scar revision surgery. The severity will depend heavily on the type of surgery performed and whether skin grafts were part of the procedure. You should expect to see some swelling, redness, and bruising immediately after surgery. The pain can be eased with cold compresses and ice, but medications should only be given if you have consulted with a physician. Once your child has gone through the surgical procedure, following the doctor’s orders will be crucial to proper recovery, but also helping to alleviate pain. This can be a challenge with little ones who do not understand why they are being forced to take it easy. Your child’s facial appearance is something that they will have to deal with for the rest of their life. As a parent, you always want to ensure that your child has the ability to put their best face forward and with scar revision surgery, you can rest assured that this is possible. Be sure to talk with the specialist like Hecht Aesthetic Center about any further questions you...

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3 Exercises That Can Help Seniors Stay Safe

Posted by on 3:20 am in Uncategorized | 0 comments

If you have a senior citizen in your life that you care about, you may be familiar with the concept of aging in place. More and more, seniors are choosing to remain in their homes as long as possible, instead of moving into nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Home health care agencies and assistive technologies can help seniors remain at home, but you may still have concerns about your loved one’s safety because of the limited mobility and balance that comes with age. These simple exercises can help your senior stay safe in their homes. Chair Aerobics Chair aerobics is the perfect choice for a senior who already has limited ability. If your loved one uses a wheelchair, he or she needs their upper body strength to balance and transfer from bed to chair and from the chair to the toilet. Chair aerobics can improve both strength and balance. Start by attaching a lightweight elastic resistance band to the senior’s chair or to a solid object like the bed or the couch. The senior can perform chest presses, pulling the band tightly to the chest for a second or two and then letting go. It’s best if you or your home health worker supervises this exercise. Chair Yoga Yoga is great for improving balance and relieving stress. Many simple yoga poses can be modified to allow seniors to perform them in a chair. Your loved one should start with simple neck rolls – these can be done by gazing up at the ceiling and slowly bringing the left ear down to the left shoulder, then the chin to the chest, then the right ear to the right shoulder. This can help relieve tension. After that, the senior can move on to stretches that involve the back and shoulders, like the seated mountain pose and the seated eagle arm pose. These movements help with balance and breathing and stretch the arms, wrist, and back. These positions are safe for many seniors to perform without assistance. Swimming If your senior loved one has access to a pool, either at home or in the community, swimming can be an excellent way for seniors to get exercise. The buoyancy of the water allows even seniors with arthritis to stretch and move without joint pain, which can help them remain limber and less likely to fall or strain their muscles. If you have a senior loved one who’s determined to age in place, encouraging them to exercise and making sure that they have regular visits from a home health care worker are some of the best ways to keep them safe and comfortable at home. For more information, speak with senior care in your...

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