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Healthy Summer Snacks to Help Keep You Hydrated, Cool and Slim


Summer is right around the corner. Many people associate summer with cold beers and hanging out by the pool to keep cool. However, the foods you eat can have a large effect on how you feel in the heat Read more

Natural Ways to Fight Depression This May


Depression is the most common form of mental illness. As much as 26% of the adult population in the United States suffers from depression. Since 1949, Mental Health America has observed that May as Mental Health Awareness Month. Mental Read more

The Benefits of Exercise and an Active Lifestyle


May is National Sports and Physical Fitness month. Now is a great time to spread awareness of the many benefits provided by engaging in an active lifestyle. Many Americans don't get enough exercise in their day to day lives. Read more

7 Ways Gardening Can Extend Your Life


In honor of April being National Garden Month, and this beautiful spring weather, we’d like to share some of the amazing health benefits gardening can bring into your life. Gardening is so healthy that it could, in fact, add Read more

Natural Ways to Fight Depression This May

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Depression is the most common form of mental illness. As much as 26% of the adult population in the United States suffers from depression. Since 1949, Mental Health America has observed that May as Mental Health Awareness Month. Mental Health America is focusing this month on risky behaviors that can increase the risk of, or exacerbate depression and mental health. Here are a few ways natural ways to fight the risks and effects of mental illness.

Avoid Risky Behaviors

According to Mental Health America, engaging in certain risky behaviors can increases the chances of developing or worsening a mental health illness, such as depression. Some of these risky behaviors include prescription medication abuse, internet addiction, and even marijuana use. Avoid engaging in certain risky behaviors if you are at risk or suffer from mental illness. Consult your doctor and follow strict instructions for prescription medication use. Strictly manage time and content viewed on the internet. Avoid internet use right before bed. Although medical marijuana is becoming more popular and accessible, it is not for everyone. Consult your doctor and avoid marijuana use if you are at risk or suffer from depression.

Exercise and Proper Sleep

Make sure to get plenty of good sleep and engage in exercise on a regular basis to naturally combat the effects of depression and mental illness. A mental illness can make it hard to sleep, but a lack of sleep can make symptoms worse. Getting enough exercise can help you sleep better by tiring your body out. Exercise can also help endorphin production in your brain, which is a chemical that helps promote good moods.

Have a Routine

Mental illness can wreak havoc on the structure in your life. It is very helpful to have a daily routine to follow. Setting small goals to accomplish is also very helpful. They don’t have to be big goals. Set small and simple goals and accomplish them one at time and go from there.

Have Responsibilities

Depression, and other mental ailments can make you want to give up on responsibilities at home and work. Don’t give into the illness. Consciously take on more responsibilities to help provide that sense of accomplishment and routine. Again, starting simple and small is just fine.

If you’re one of the lucky ones who doesn’t suffer from a form of mental illness, you may know someone close in your life who does. Phoenix home health care is here to help. For more information on our services, experience, or rates, call (602) 396-5742 or fill out our contact form. We look forward to serving you.


8 Ways Pets Improve Our Health

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If you ask any pet owner who their best friend is, they just might name one or several furry little friends. Scientists, doctors, and therapists all agree that having a pet is beneficial to both your physical and mental health. Not only do pets help keep us on our toes, entertain us, bring laughter and unconditional love into our lives, but they’re also really great at providing measurable health benefits.

In honor of April being both National Pets are Wonderful and Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, the folks at MD Home Health have chosen to list a few of our favorite reasons why having a pet greatly enriches life, and helps improve health.

According to the CDC, and additional research studies, owning a pet provides several health benefits such as:


• Lowers anxiety and stress
• Lowers depression
• Lowers triglyceride levels
• Lowers blood pressure
• Lowers cholesterol
• Lowers feelings of loneliness
• Increases activity and exercise
• Increases socialization

Those who need home care or companionship could greatly benefit from owning a pet. Pets are so beneficial to our health, they can become certified as assistance or therapy animals, and allowed to accompany their owners just about anywhere. Even if a pet owner is not able to exercise, or move as freely as they would like, a pet can help improve health, and assistance for pet care, or assistance from a service animal, is available through licensed Phoenix home health professionals. You may even request an assistance pet to come to your home and help with your day to day tasks.

If you’d like to celebrate the powerful healing benefits of animals this April, you may join in with attending a pet awareness event, adopting a pet, or donating to a charitable cause that either helps rescue animals, or works toward preventing cruelty to animals. You may also choose to honor the pets that you have with some special attention this much, such as trips to a park or beach, and making sure to give your pet healthy pet food. You may also want to check up on the health of your pet by making your annual veterinary visit for a check-up. Investing in your pet’s overall health and happiness will pay off in the long-run with increased health and happiness in your life as well.

If you’re interested in having someone come to your home for some companionship or assistance, or are wondering if it’s time for a home caregiver, we would be happy to help. We can have someone come to your home and give you a free consultation to identify your needs. For more information, or a detailed quote, call (619) 291-8181 or fill out our contact form. We look forward to hearing from you.

 


8 Ways to Beat the Heat and Stay Active this Summer

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People young and senior in water gymnastics physiotherapy with dumbbells

All adults and children should be as active as their level of fitness permits, because physical activities impart health benefits and help to stave off the negative effects of inactivity. Whether you happen to be the beneficiary of Phoenix home health care, or you are a professional who provides that care, you will benefit by being active and enjoying the companionship of others while doing so.

In the summertime however, the heat and humidity are sometimes enough to bother anyone, so that outdoor activities are less appealing than they might normally be. This doesn’t mean you should sacrifice activity altogether, it just means you need to be a little more creative about choosing Phoenix home health care activities to get involved with. Here are some ways you can beat the heat in summer and still stay active.

Go Swimming

Swimming is still the best way to cool off, and almost every neighborhood has a public pool or at least a private center where free swim time is regularly scheduled. Even if you can’t swim, just walking around in the water or splashing your feet over the side can be extremely refreshing – and it gets you moving.

Indoor Aerobics

If you have air-conditioning on the premises, or at least a good fan, aerobics are a great way to get in some good exercise even during summer. You can even avoid the real heat of the day by planning workouts in the morning, or later in the evening.

Have an Indoor Picnic

You can stay inside with the air conditioning for this one, but it will get you involved with meal planning and preparation while enjoying your Phoenix home health care.

Make Yourself a Cool Drink

Making smoothies can be fun for everyone, because you have to pick out the fruits and flavors to be used, and mix them altogether, before enjoying that sweet, cool, nutritious treat. If smoothies aren’t your thing, go out into your garden and pick some fresh mint leaves, then add a twist of lemon, some ice, and cold water – instant refreshment!

Take a Walk in the Mall

All malls are air-conditioned these days, and many have walk paths around the premises. This can be a great way to stay cool while checking out the summer sales, and when you get tired, there are always rest benches so you can catch your breath.

Enjoy some Ice Cream

If there’s a nearby store, walk to it and enjoy the exercise. If no stores are nearby, why not make your own, and cool off with your favorite flavor?

Visit the Pet Shop

Make sure it’s a store with air conditioning, so you can walk about and check out all the cute little pets with fur and wings, just waiting to entertain you.

Low-Impact Exercising

Without working up a big sweat, you can still get in some valuable exercise by practicing some simple yoga techniques or spending time stretching. Both will provide physical benefits as well as contribute to your emotional state of well-being.

Even when the sun beats down on the Southwest unmercifully in the summer time, there are still Phoenix home health care activities which can keep you moving, while also minimizing the powerful effects of the summer heat. MD Home Health, your Phoenix home health care experts, recommend that you stay active by putting some of these heat-busting ideas into practice.

For more information on our services, experience, or rates, call (602) 396-5742, or fill out our contact form. We look forward to serving you.

 


5 Ways to Stay Active and Healthy as a We Age

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Senior Couple In Fitness Clothing Running Along Beach

Just about everyone is aware of the importance of staying active as a we age, as it is so important to our overall health and well-being. One of the difficulties associated with that however, is that the body itself is constantly slowing down as we age, which means staying active requires a real effort to get up and about; overcoming the natural tendency to relax.

Here are five tried-and-true components of active, healthy living, using examples that everyone, even seniors, can easily manage and derive great benefit from. If there are some aspects of these suggestions which you just aren’t up to, some home health care assistance may even be an option for filling in some of the gaps.

Light cardiovascular

There’s a tremendous value in cardiovascular workouts, because they increase the heart rate and blood flow,  strengthen the heart muscle, and improves respiratory processes. If you have access to a swimming pool, swimming or water aerobics are great ways to use all the muscles in the body, and if not, a brisk walk in the morning can get your heart pumping. Depending on how fit you are, you might also try hiking, biking, golf, or tennis; all of which are excellent cardiovascular activities.

Regular stretching

Because flexibility decreases significantly as we age, muscles need regular stretching in order to retain some degree of flexibility. There are a great many terrific exercises for stretching legs, back muscles, and torso, to keep muscles from contracting and stiffening, and these should be done as often as possible to maintain and promote flexibility.

Balance training

It’s very important to incorporate even some light balance training into your active senior lifestyle, because this can be extremely helpful in avoiding falls and potentially serious injuries. Disciplines like Pilates, Yoga, and Tai Chi provide this kind of balance training, and classes like this are offered at many local fitness centers and by community organizations. If you need transportation, this could be provided through MD Home Assist.

Strength training

Strength training doesn’t have to be anything like body-building in the traditional athletic sense, but some moderate strengthening of your muscles can help you perform simple household chores much more easily, and it helps to strengthen your bones. You also don’t need any gym equipment or expensive gadgets to help you with strength training – you can use simple elastic resistance bands, ordinary pieces of furniture, and even the walls of your home to provide the resistance you need for some beneficial exercise.

Indoor/Outdoor chores and activities

Staying active and fit can happen as a by-product of doing regular household chores, both indoors and outdoors. Mowing the lawn is good walking exercise, and provides resistance to some extent. You can get great benefits from scrubbing some part of the house, cleaning out a shed, doing laundry, or re-organizing the basement.

When you have chores done for the day, why not hook up with peers for dancing, walking, bocce ball, or some organized activities? If you can keep your active lifestyle full of enjoyable and fun things to do, there is a much greater chance that you’ll continue the activities regularly, and make it a built-in part of your healthy lifestyle.

Assistance with your active lifestyle

Sometimes a little assistance is all that’s needed in order for you to maintain an active lifestyle, and you require some home health care, such as that provided by MD Home Health/Home Assist. Services such as medication reminders, feeding, light housekeeping, healthy grocery shopping, companionship, and transportation services can add motivation, and ease the burden on you, so contact us today, and we’d love to assist in your energies to staying active and healthy.

 


5 Signals You May Want to Consider Home Assistance

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It’s never easy to make the decision to seek assistance with your everyday living tasks. This is understandable whether you recently became disabled or were born with a disability. As a Phoenix home health care provider, we understand your concerns and are here to help.

Pay Attention to These Specific Problems

One thing that may make it easier for you to determine if it’s time to sign up for home care in Phoenix is to consider the following categories of possible issues:

  • Personal Care: Do you have difficulty keeping up with grooming tasks such as showering, shaving, brushing your teeth, and washing your hair? If so, you can get as much or as little assistance as you need from a non-medical healthcare aide.
  • Household Management: It is easy for anyone to feel overwhelmed with caring for the home, with or without a disability. If chores like grocery shopping and yard maintenance are becoming too taxing, having assistance in this and other areas of household management could be a great stress reliever.
  • Financial Difficulties: Has the utility company sent a shut-off because you forgot to pay the bill? Do you have trouble figuring out how much money is in your checking, savings, or other banking accounts? These are common situations that could indicate the need to consider home care in Phoenix. You remain in control of your bank accounts while receiving the help you need to manage them.
  • Signs of Cognitive Impairment or Physical Frailty: Do you feel alarmed at how easy you seem to forget important details in your life? Maybe walking is becoming increasingly difficult or you fatigue easily from all that you have to do. A little extra help can increase your quality of life when either of these issues is a problem.
  • Driving is No Longer Safe: Do you often get lost when trying to drive somewhere? Perhaps driving intimidates you or you have been in several fender benders lately. Having someone else do the driving ensures you get to work, appointments, and leisure activities on time and without the added stress of getting behind the wheel.

    Home Health Care May Be the Answer You Seek

Non-medical assistance at home could be the ideal option for you if you struggle with the effects of a moderate to severe disability. The loving and experienced staff at MD Home Health/Home Assist can help you with personal care, assist with homemaker tasks, and perform a variety of medical and non-medical assistance. We encourage you to contact us today to learn more about the wide range of services we can offer you.


5 Ways to Brighten up the Holiday Season for your Loved Ones

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Woman hands in winter gloves Heart symbol shaped LifestyleWith the holiday season fast approaching, thoughts about loved ones become more and more prominent in people’s minds, and this is especially true of those family members who might require home nursing care or physical therapy. Of course in most cases, probably the most desired gift for a person in such circumstances would be to have family with them, sharing the season and enjoying the warmth of family ties.

But what about a Christmas present? It is often difficult to come up with a gift idea that really has meaning, and can truly brighten the holiday season. This being so, it makes more sense to consider ideas for Phoenix patients and loved ones that cost little or nothing, and are still truly appreciated.

A surprise ‘hair salon’ session

A female client or loved one might really appreciate a surprise session where she is pampered with an entirely new hairstyle, starting with a shampoo and finishing with a smiling face in the mirror, flashing a brand new look. Why not arrange for your loved one to have a hair salon day at home, and let her feel special for a few hours? She will probably love the whole experience, and every time she is complimented by someone afterward, it will be a reminder of the unique and thoughtful gift she was given.

Donate time/money to a charitable institution

The Phoenix holiday season is a time for giving to others, and it might perk up your loved one if you spend time with her at a charitable organization, helping those less fortunate. The Phoenix Children’s Hospital Foundation provides a wonderful service to young people in the area, and St. Mary’s Foodbank Alliance serves almost all of Arizona’s 15 counties in offering food and shelter to those who especially need it during the holiday season.

Out for a drive

If your loved one or client spends almost all of his/her time confined to the home setting, it might be nice to arrange for a drive around town to enjoy the sights and sounds of seasonal preparations. This can not only impart a sense of the Phoenix holiday season in your family member, but also provide welcome relief from the life of a shut-in.

Decorating the residence

Cheery decorations are often one of the best triggers of holiday spirit in the home or living space, and they provide constant reminders of the joyous season at hand. Even if your loved one has limited mobility, it will be worth the effort to do a little decorating to brighten up the living area, and enjoy the feeling of being involved and participating in holiday activities.

Reading togetherCare Assistant Reading Book

Homebound patients, especially seniors, may have difficulty reading on their own, but might really appreciate reading a good story with someone. The pleasant sound of another voice is often a very welcoming prospect in itself, and some light discussion about the story might serve to involve your loved one and increase her appreciation for the time you spent together.

MD Home Health can brighten the season for loved ones

Loving home care in Phoenix is provided by MD Home Health/MD Home Assist. Show your loved ones you care by hiring someone to come and clean their home for them, tuck them in at night, cook, run errands or even just give companionship. No one should have to be alone and feeling sad this holiday season, and we will treat your loved ones like family of our own.


5 Ways to Beat the Holiday Blues

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Depressed or sad woman walking down a barren path in winter

The holiday season is popularly depicted as a time full of light and joy…but beneath that attractive surface, many people are plagued with stress and sadness. Whether they come from family troubles, unpleasant memories, or the anxiety of always having something to do and somewhere to be, these seasonal doldrums are something almost everyone will experience at some point in their lives. Use these five ways to beat the holiday blues and make it to January with your head held high.

1. Take time to breathe.

If your life during the holidays seems like a whirlwind of activity, those conditions are basically a pressure cooker of stress. Try to keep everything in perspective: the world won’t stop turning if you take fifteen minutes every morning or afternoon to stop and relax. Learn some gentle yoga moves or practice mindful breathing to help yourself feel centered and calm.

2. Don’t neglect physical activity.

Too many people wait until their New Year’s resolutions kick in before they hit the gym. But why miss out on all those positive exercise endorphins during the month when you probably need them the most? You don’t need to bench press 200 pounds or run a marathon, but raising your heartbeat for 30 minutes a day will help you feel better in both body and mind.

3. If things go wrong, do your best to let them go.

A gift doesn’t ship in time for Christmas? Family drama gets out of hand? First batch of decorated cookies burn? It’s just life. Don’t allow yourself to get sucked into resentment or frustration over any of it. Being intentional about maintaining a good attitude is one of the most important things you can do to beat the holiday blues.

4. Take nutritional supplements.

The same hormonal imbalances that cause Seasonal Affective Disorder can rear their heads during the holidays. Fortunately, there are plenty of vitamins and herbs that can help perk up your mood. Take vitamin D supplements to make up for the wintertime reduction in sun exposure, B vitamins, and fish oil. Many people report that St. John’s Wort has a positive impact on depressive moods when taken regularly, and valerian root can mitigate anxiety.

5. Don’t isolate yourself

Even if you feel like crawling into bed and hibernating all winter, isolation can end up making you feel even worse. Whether that means meeting up with friends, having a trained home companion, participating in a candlelight service or holiday event, or unburdening yourself to a therapist, spending time with people you trust can have a major effect on well being.

No matter which holiday ailments may plague you this season, remember that it’s well within your power to beat the holiday blues. Just remember, it’ll all be over soon, so do your best to enjoy it while you can. Should you need some extra help or companionship around your home this season, we’re just a phone call away.

 


5 Ways to Keep your Cool While Caring for your Spouse

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Anyone who finds themselves suddenly thrust into the role of primary caregiver for an ailing spouse can be overwhelmed by the constant attention and care necessary on a daily basis in caring for your mate. This is particularly true for disabled spouses who can do little or nothing for themselves, and require help for even basic functions like washing, eating, and bathroom needs.

In such cases, it often happens that the care-giving spouse has little or no time to himself or herself, and this can quickly lead to frustration, resentment, and over a period of time, even burnout. Before that stage is reached, it is advisable to build practices into the daily routine that can be used to maintain sanity – after all, a burned-out care-giver can’t really be much help to anyone.

Try to maintain a positive attitude

An upbeat attitude for yourself and the person you’re caring for are of utmost importance. While this is admittedly difficult to maintain, even under stress-free circumstances, it is something that should be adopted to the greatest extent possible to prevent an overall negative attitude from creeping in when caring for your loved one.

Include down time

Taking time out for yourself is extremely important, even if this only amounts to a few minutes each day. There are always times this can be scheduled, for instance when your spouse takes a nap, or is engaged watching television or reading a book. When it does happen, use this time to best advantage – clear your head and think about anything else but care-giving. Some possibilities might be taking a walk, reading a book, listening to music, or even meditating.

Get help from friends and relatives

Soliciting help from friends and relatives is nothing to be embarrassed about, and is a wise strategy for helping to avoid fatigue in caring for your spouse. Perhaps on specific days sons, daughters, or others can assist in care-giving to lessen your personal burden. Lacking any of these options, support groups may be another possibility for providing at least temporary assistance, and a broadening of the support network.

Take care of yourself too

Never allow your own health to suffer while you are tending to the health of your spouse. This means making sure your diet is a healthy one, that you get enough exercise to stay healthy and reduce stress, and that you sleep well at night so you don’t start the next day frazzled.

Emotional closeness

Try to remain receptive to emotional intimacy when caring for your spouse, since that might be one of their greatest needs. Think about which aspects of daily care cause you to be frustrated, indifferent, or even angry, and recognize them for the emotional triggers they are. Manage these so they don’t interfere with care-giving, and so that you can maintain a positive relationship with your loved one.

Home care in Phoenix

Providing constant care for a loved one is not easy, but it doesn’t have to signal the end of your own active, personal life. Home health care in Phoenix is here if you’re in need of any extra assistance, even if for those tasks that trigger the Hulk inside you. We provide a variety of non-medical and medical services which can be combined into a custom care plan for you. Give us a call, and we can send someone to your home for a free consultation. In the meantime, check out the caring.com wellness center.


4 Tips to Beat the Summer Heat

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Senior relaxing at the seaside summer holidays concept

Who doesn’t look forward to taking in the warm, summer sun? You spend months going through the cooler winter temps only to be scorched by the sun during those three prime months of summer. Regardless of how old you are, you need to exercise caution when it comes to being out in the heat. Too much heat is a bad thing. To help you stay cool during the extreme temperatures, follow these simple tips:

Turn the lights off in rooms you aren’t using.

While you might not realize it, lights actually produce a significant amount of heat. Have you ever tried to touch a lightbulb after having it on for a little while? That is a surefire way to get yourself burned. The best thing you can do is to leave the lights off when a room isn’t in use.

Drink ample amounts of water.

The warmer the temperature is outside, the more water you need to drink. If you skip out on the fluids, you will find yourself dehydrated and in the hospital. Your body is composed mainly of water, so it makes sense that you need to put water back into it to make sure you stay healthy all year round. Aim for at least eight cups of water per day, if not more.

Dress based on the weather.

If the weather is going to be 90 degrees outside, one should dress accordingly, wear light fabrics that are breathable and in cool colors. When in doubt, pay attention to what the weather forecast says and plan your wardrobe accordingly. It doesn’t make sense to overheat yourself due to clothing attire that isn’t weather appropriate.

Block the heat.

If the weather outside is extremely warm, keep your windows, doors, blinds and curtains closed to prevent the heat from entering your home. Keeping the area shaded will help to maintain the cooler temperature inside of your environment. Once it cools down outside, you can open everything up and let the nice breeze make its way through your space.

Would you like a little extra help taking care of your loved one this summer and making sure they stay nice and cool? Thanks to MD Home Health/Home Assist, you can put your worries behind you and rest assured that there is someone who is going to be there when you need them the most. Phoenix home health care has never been as convenient and rewarding as it is now.


The Benefits of Outsourcing Grocery Shopping and Errands to a Caregiver

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Young woman helping elderly woman with grocery shopping

Every day chores loom large for many seniors who struggle to accomplish basic tasks around the house. Getting to the store and running other errands can become complicated and time consuming.

But these everyday chores need to be done regularly if the senior wants to stay in her own home. She needs nutritious food and the ability to get to the bank, the library and other services.

This is where the benefits of outsourcing grocery shopping and other errands to a caregiver become clear. It can be a positive step to help the elderly live functional lives in their own homes.

It Takes Time

According to a workshop summary called Providing Healthy and Safe Foods As We Age, about one-third of most grocery trips last less than 30 minutes. But the time spent getting to the store and back can double that. And if a senior needs to take the bus, a single trip can take two or more hours.

If he has trouble walking or with his balance, an elderly person can find trips outside the home fraught. The additional struggle to get in and out of a bus while carrying bags can lead to falls and fatigue.

Taking a taxi is a good alternative because it provides direct transportation, but it takes time to arrange and there is the problem of making sure the taxi is available for the trip home.

Getting a ride from family, friends or neighbors is probably the ideal scenario, but it can be very hard for working adults with families to make time for this type of help.

It Takes Energy

Trips outside the home can challenge a senior’s physical endurance and ability to walk easily. In addition, minor aches, regular colds or other ailments that would have caused little if any difficulty a decade earlier can with time cut significantly into her energy levels.

This makes it hard to be consistent with regular trips to the store and other places to handle errands. But consistency is what is needed in order to stay in her own home.

According to the National Resource Center on Nutrition, Physical Activity & Aging, “good nutrition plays a crucial role in keeping older people healthy and functioning,” but many simply aren’t eating well. One of the major reasons is how hard it is to get to the grocery store.

Outsourcing Errands

The answer to this dilemma can be as simple and direct as paying someone to run the errands for the senior. Hiring a caregiver to do the grocery shopping removes it as a barrier to staying healthy.

The senior doesn’t have to worry about begging a ride from family or neighbors. She doesn’t have to worry about finding a taxi at the right time. She won’t have to navigate buses and worry about carrying the groceries.

He won’t be overtaxed by a trip out of the house and up and down the aisles choosing the right food. He can use his physical energy for other activities like a get together with friends, which provides a more direct chance for socializing.

Taking the simple step of outsourcing errands like grocery shopping to a caregiver can keep a senior safer, better fed and more in control of daily care. For more information, contact MD Home Health/ Home Assist.