Posts made in April, 2015

Senior Safety: Tips For Designing The Perfect Bathroom For Elderly Loved Ones

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that at least one of every three senior citizens at least 65 years of age take part in a fall each year. In addition, it is these falls that are the primary cause of non-fatal and fatal injuries among older individuals. When you think about it, the bathroom is one of the most dangerous places in the home for older adults. If you have an elderly loved one who wants to maintain their independence at home, it is crucial that you take the steps to ensure their bathroom is senior-friendly. Here are a few tips:

Adequate Lighting

Older people don’t tend to sleep through the night. The bladder muscles weaken as you age, which can cause you to need to go to the bathroom more frequently, including at night. However, an elderly individual roaming around a dark house at night is an accident waiting to happen. Therefore, it is crucial that there is adequate lighting and that light switches are easy to reach. In addition, nightlights should be in the hallway to ensure that a loved one doesn’t fall on to the way to the bathroom.

Non-Slip Surfaces

The older you get, the less balance that you have. This already puts your loved one at a risk of falling, but when they have to deal with slippery surfaces, such as the bathtub, the risk is that much more. A non-slip mat should be placed in the shower to help with traction. In addition, a bath mat can be placed outside of the shower to step on afterward. This is particularly important for wood and tile floors.

Curbless Showers and Walk-In Tubs

One of the main issues with the traditional bathtub is that your loved one has to step up over the edge of the tub and down again to get into the tub. With a walk-in tub, the stepping is eliminated and you literally walk straight into the tub. There is a watertight door that ensures that water does not escape. For seniors who prefer showers over baths, a curbless shower adds convenience and accessibility in the bathroom. Instead of a foot or more, your loved one will only have to step over a three- or four-inch high lip.

Bidets

A bidet can be very beneficial for senior citizens. These work to eliminate any type of strain that you would normally need to turn to clean yourself after using the bathroom. Bidets have a warm water wash and a warm air dryer that takes care of the after-use hygiene. For those who do not want a separate bidet, there are toilet-mounted bidets that simply attach to the existing toilet. Some even feature heated seats.

These things are just a few the numerous items that can be added to the bathroom to ensure the safety of your loved ones. For more information, talk to companies like ComForcare Home Care – York, PA.

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Ripping Your Meniscus: Why It Hurts So Bad And New Procedures Which Can Speed Healing

When your doctor tells you that the injury to your knee is your meniscus, you may know that it is serious because it is a common sports injury. What you may not know is that you do not have to play sports to tear it or injure it, and that it is vital to the function of your knee. Without it, you cannot bend or flex your knee or rotate it in and out. If you are worried about how much pain surgery will inflict upon you, there are new techniques that will cause you less pain and help you heal faster.

Menisci Tears, Symptoms, and the Results of Avoiding Medical Treatment

Another fact that may surprise you is that you have more than one meniscus in each knee. This cartilage tissue connects your femur to your lower leg bones and holds your knee cap (or patella) onto the tops of these bones. Tearing one or more menisci causes your leg to pop in and out of place with each bend of the knee. Not only can you feel these “pops” but you can also hear them. If you ignore the pain and popping noises, eventually your knee cap begins to grind on the ends of the bones it sits over and you get arthritis, which is even more painful.

Traditional Arthroscopic Surgery and New Techniques

Arthroscopic surgery takes a small scope into the knee via an equally small incision. If the tear is not too bad, your surgeon can stitch the cartilage back together and retract the scope. If it is beyond repair, it is common to remove the damaged cartilage completely. Unfortunately, for patients that have badly damaged cartilage, it often means a complete knee replacement.

Newer surgical techniques allow surgeons to fix your knee without cutting through layers of tissue and removing your knee cap completely. The surgeon gently reshapes the knee cap, which can become worn and jagged, into a bone which glides easily and smoothly again. Because of smaller incisions, less tissue damage, and the fact that you can keep your natural knee, you can heal faster and be walking without pain within a month, on average.

Finding a Surgeon 

Whether you choose arthroscopic surgery for a simple meniscus repair or less invasive surgery to keep your knee and remove damaged cartilage, you still have to find a doctor. Newer techniques mean that it is more difficult to find someone with the training, and even more difficult to find a surgeon that takes your insurance. Contact your insurance provider to get the name and location of the nearest knee specialist like one from Framingham Orthopedic Associates.

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