Spending time with grandchildren can easily be one of the greatest joys in life but we all know that a nobody has the energy of a 3 year old. Here are some great ideas for activities that your grandkids will enjoy without requiring you to chase them around the house.

What other activities do you love to do with your grandkids?

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With the ever-increasing use of smart phones and tablets, even older adults are getting in on the latest technology. My grandpa can use his iPad just as well as my 2 year old cousin can – and she even knows how to turn off the child-proof settings. As seniors spend more time with their devices, are they spending less time being active?

According to the CDC, regular physical activity is one of the best things senior adults can do for their health. (See more senior adult exercise information here.) Even 10 minute mini-exercises spread throughout the day can be highly beneficial. We’ve compiled some great senior work out videos that can be done standing, sitting, or are easily adapted to fit the mobility needs of each individual. Nothing like combining screen time with staying physically fit, right?

 

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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 3 seniors falls each year. (CDC) Additionally, the CDC says that “Among older adults, falls are the leading cause of both fatal and nonfatal injuries.” Which means that fall prevention is important.

One of the easiest places for anyone to slip and fall is in the shower. The surfaces are often wet, and usually pretty slippery. An older adult with lower mobility may have a harder time staying safe in the shower. Here at Stander, we’re big supporters of Living Independently. Having the ability to shower on their own is definitely something that can increase the confidence and sense of independence of the senior adult in your care.

Here are some simple ways to create a safe shower environment for seniors with limited mobility:

  • Install grab bars.Our Curve Grab Bar is rust-resistant and pivots and locks against the wall when not in use.  Our Security Pole & Curve Grab Baris tension mounted so it can be placed anywhere in the home – no screws or bolts required. Place it right next to the bath or shower.
  • Buy a slip-proof mat. Bathtub and shower mats are easy to find at any store. These help to increase traction and prevent slipping on the wet floor.
  • Put your walker to good use! Use the walker to get to, and inside, the bathroom. Our EZ Fold-N-Go Walker has an organizer pouch that can be used to transport anything needed in the bathroom and it folds up nice and small so it can be placed out of the way in the corder of the bathroom during the shower.
  • Check the temperature. Make sure your water heater is set to an ideal temperature. Falls can be prevented by avoiding scolding hot water that may surprise (or even burn) the shower user.
  • Keep it clean. Keeping the bathroom free from unnecessary items and clutter can make it easier to move around. Not all falls are caused by wet floors.

What other tips do you have for keeping the shower and bathroom a safe place for independent seniors?

Posted in Bath Safety, Bathroom Safety, Caregiving, Fall Prevention, Improve Mobility, Live Independent, Mobility Aids, Mobility Tips | Leave a comment

It can be easy to get so caught up in caregiving and those you are taking care of that you forget to take care of your own personal needs. When your basic personal needs are met, it’s much easier for you to give your time to others. Self-care should be a priority for every caregiver. Some basic tips for taking care of yourself are making sure you get enough rest, eat well, exercise regularly, and visit the doctor for your needs as well as the needs of those in your care. Here are a few ways to help make your self-care a priority without taking away from your care for others:

Reduce stress:
- Rest, rest, rest. Make sure you get enough sleep to function well.
- Take some time for yourself! When those you care for are napping or are able to be left on their own for a while, do something you love. Take a bath, do a little solo shopping, whatever will help you feel refreshed.
- Relax. Let yourself believe that you’re doing a good job. Nobody is perfect and you’re likely doing a much better job than you think you are.
- Ask for help. If you need a break, send someone else to the grocery store this week – or have it delivered! Ask another sibling to take your parents for the day. It’s okay to ask for help.

Set goals:
- We’ve all heard that writing down goals helps to accomplish what you need to do – it’s true! So, do it.
- Making a list of the things you want to accomplish can help you prioritize all the things you need to do. Did you plan a trip to the zoo? Maybe you can skip the zoo this week and save it for a less busy week.
- Write down possible solutions. Think outside the box and maybe you’ll come up with a new idea that will help simplify your life.

Be grateful:
- When all else fails, shift your focus to what is good in your life. Times can be tough, but look for the good and you’ll find it.
- Taking time to make a gratitude list with those you care for can help you both to feel better about life.

 

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The EZ Adjust Bed Rail is one of our most popular bed rails! It is the only bed rail on the market that extends in length after installation for Full-Fall Protection. It can be used as a half-bed rail to get in-and out of bed – and extends to a full-size bed rail at night for full fall protection. It easily adjusts from 26” – 42” inches with the push of a button – and folds down and out of the way when not in use. It also comes with a convenient organizer pouch to keep handy items close by – and like all of our bed rails, it blends in with your bedroom (like another piece of furniture) so you can maintain the comforting feeling of your home.

Here’s what others are saying about their experience with the Stander EZ Adjust Bed Rail:

“I had a stroke and do not have mobility in my left side. This product has helped me stay safe when in bed and also when getting out of bed. Thank you!” – Ramond from Washington

“I bought the EZ Adjust Bed Rail for my elderly father. He has difficulty walking and getting out of the bed. Even with an adjustable bed that rises he has difficulty getting up. The EZ Adjust Bed Rail helps a lot. He has something to grab. What I like is how you can raise the rail up and raise it down. That way when he goes to bed the rail is not in the way because it is folded down. I previously was using the Stander BedCane, but the EZ Adjust Bed Rail is much, much better. Again, the difference is the rail can be folded down when you don’t use it so it does not get in the way when you go to bed. I would recommend this product to others.” – Philip from California

“My husband has fallen out of bed numerous times in the past two years. Fortunately, he has never gotten really hurt, but we figured it was just a matter of time before he did. He is quite heavy, and the last time it happened, we had to call for help to get him up (at 2:00 in the morning). Now we can both sleep better knowing he is safe. He is able to release the side on his own to go to the bathroom in the night, so he doesn’t need to wake me. This product is very well made, and secure, so we would recommend it to others who need assistance in their home. I priced a similar product at a local medical supply store, and it was nearly half again the price of this product. We are very happy with this railing.” – Stephany from Iowa

Ready to check it out for yourself? Check it out on the product page, here!

Posted in Bed Rails, Bedroom Safety, Caregiving, Elderly Bed Rails, Fall Prevention | 1 Comment

It’s important to be aware of specific nutrition needs for individual seniors. There are some general rules that apply to most senior adults. Learn more about special senior dietary needs here. Senior adults often suffer from vitamin deficiencies. When preparing meals for seniors, focus on foods that will help increase nutrients, decrease blood pressure, and help provide the energy needed for their daily tasks.

Bonus tip: Have them help you prepare the meal! Some seniors may be interested in helping plan their own menu or even cooking the food. Our mobility products can be very helpful in increasing mobility (and safety!) around the kitchen.

Here are some basic recipes to get you started planning nutritious meals for you and your loved one:

Greek Yogurt Parfait

5-a-Day Salad

Poppy Seed Fruit Salad

Lightened-Up Stuffed Peppers

Grilled Fish Tacos with Peach Salsa

 

 

 

Posted in Blog, Caregiving, Fun, Healthy Facts, Improve Mobility, Kitchen Safety, Senior Health, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Osteoporosis can make bones brittle and easy to break. But that’s only one reason for preventing falls. Falls can not only break and injure bones, but they can lead to hospitalization or injury death. Here at Stander, we place a high importance on living independently. Increased mobility helps seniors to feel independent and confident. Preventing falls helps their mobility, can keep them feeling more healthy and strong, and keeps them active and out of the hospital.

During the summer, it’s fun to spend more time outdoors. The downside to this is that depending on where you go, you have less control over your surroundings and potential stumbling hazards. Using mobility aids can help to reduce the risk of falling outdoors and so can these tips:

  • Be cautious walking on grass. If the sprinklers have been on recently, grass can be especially slippery! Choose to walk on the sidewalk or a drier spot of grass instead.
  • Using a cane or walker can greatly increase mobility and confidence.
  • Use a bag or purse that has a shoulder strap, back straps, or even consider a fanny pack to keep your hands free.
  • Wear proper prescription lenses – increased vision can be a great help in decreasing falls.
  • Take the steps a little bit slower. Outdoor staircases can be uneven or slippery, take them slowly to ensure stable footing.
Posted in Fall Prevention, Improve Mobility, Mobility Aids, Mobility Tips, Senior Health, Stair Safety, Travel | Leave a comment

1. Stay Active
Regular exercise has so many benefits. It helps you to maintain your muscle mass and flexibility, it can help you sleep better, and it’s empowering to be able to still get around independently. If you have movement restrictions, consider adaptive exercises and/or mobility aids to help you out.

2. Be Creative
Learning a new craft or hobby can help you stay mentally active and engaged. It’s never too late to learn something new or break out those old calligraphy pens. Creating new things can help you feel valuable. Bonus: get your grandchildren involved!

3. Get Some Rest
Relaxing can really help keep your stress levels down. A little stress can be good for you, but make sure you take time to kick back and let that stress balance out to a healthy level. Don’t forget that you still need a good night’s rest at night. Maintain a good sleeping routine to make your time awake more enjoyable!

4. Eat Well
Make sure you’re getting the proper vitamins and nutrients you need in your diet. Reduce the risk of diseases by eating a diet rich in veggies, fruits, and foods that are rich in omega-3s. Find healthy foods that you enjoy and treat yourself to them regularly!

5. Enjoy!
Last, but not least, enjoy your age! Who ever said that aging has to be a depressing thing. There are wonderful aspects of every age. Don’t waste your days wishing you were still young, embrace where you’re at in life and enjoy every minute. Focus on things you love and you can become happier as you age.

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Losing a loved one or friend can be a tough thing for anyone to go through. For senior adults, loss can be an especially tough thing to handle. Aging can bring a time of many losses: loss of independence, loss of physical strength, loss of memory, and often, the loss of many friends in a short period of time. As peers, spouses, friends, and even children start to pass away, senior adults can feel as though they’ve lost their emotional support system as well – this can make handling further loss especially tough.

Grief is a natural human process that can occur for many reasons, but is often associated with loss and death. It takes time to heal and go through the grieving process. Additionally, people tend to handle grief in different ways and for different amounts of time. We realize there is no one-size-fits-all answer for helping someone you love through these tough times, but we’ve collected some general tips for helping a senior adult in your care heal and recover from loss.

  • Give them a support system. Ensure that you are there to help them and are willing to listen. Help them stay in touch with other close family and friends who can be an emotional support at this tough time.
  • Help them to consider their own physical and emotional needs. Grieving can cause distress and disrupt sleep schedules. Help them to maintain a healthy diet, sleep well, and keep their immune system functioning well.
  • Be understanding. You can help them to maintain a routine that will help them to feel positive about their life, but be understanding when they aren’t feeling up to attending certain social events or activities. Give them alone time when they need it.
  • Be genuinely caring. Try to offer heartfelt sentiments and talk to them about their friend or loved one in a caring way instead of offering trite sayings or sentiments. Sometimes it means more to feel sorrow with them than to be positive all the time.
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Getting a good night’s rest is essential for your health no matter your age. Changing to sleeping patterns are a normal part of the aging process. Physicians often use a person’s sleeping patterns as a gauge of how their health is doing. Not sleeping well can often be a sign of illness or depression. Additionally, daytime and nighttime drowsiness increases the chance of falls and related injuries. There are so many reasons to improve your sleeping abilities.

Here are some general tips for improving your sleep that can apply to any age.

Noise keeping you up/waking you? Does someone in your house snore? Maybe there are little ones up at odd hours or a noisy heater that kicks on at 3 AM. Sleeping with earplugs can greatly improve your sleeping. A white-noise machine or switching rooms can also help to eliminate those noises that are disrupting your sleep. You can even download a white-noise app for your phone at a much lower cost than a white-noise machine.

Lights On/Lights Off During the day, exposing yourself to sunlight helps to regulate your melatonin levels. At night, artificial lights can lower your melatonin levels and prevent you from feeling sleepy. Getting an appropriate amount of sunlight during the day and using low-wattage bulbs at night can help to balance that melatonin and improve your natural sleep cycle. Limiting “screen time” before bed can also help with this. Additionally, using an eye mask or room darkening curtains can help to keep your bedtime surroundings dark and keep you from stirring in the middle of your REM cycle.

Create a routine and stick with it. Our bodies work on circadian rhythms. When we throw off that rhythm, we have a harder time sleeping. Once you pick a bedtime, try to get to bed at that that time every night – and make sure you’re waking up at the same time in the mornings too. Helping to regulate your body’s clock can greatly improve your sleep. Make relaxing before your bed time a part of this routine. Take time to wind down, avoid phones and television, and let yourself let go of your stresses from the day.

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