“My mother has been complaining about blurry vision, and I am concerned she might be developing cataracts. I don’t know how she is going to adjust if she loses her sight! Is there anything that we can do, or is it too late to save her vision?” – Sylvia from Woodstock

If your loved one has cataracts, she is in good company, but it doesn’t mean her sight is gone forever. By the time people reach 80, at least half of the elderly population will either have cataracts or have had surgery to remove them. Usually, you can tell if your loved one has a cataract, […]

“My sister and I both live in different cities far from our elderly father, and neither of us can visit as often as we like. We both worry we aren’t doing enough to help him. Should we try to move him to be near us, or can long-distance caregiving work for our family?” Stephen from Franklin, Tennessee

When you live out of town, you may not be able to act as your senior’s primary caregiver. That does not mean you do not have a vital role in your loved one’s care. What you lack in physical proximity you can make up for in organization and coordination. The key to successful long-distance caregiving […]

“My father has been limited to his room at the assisted living facility since the COVID-19 stay-at-home orders began, and I am worried about the toll this seclusion is taking on him. Is there anything I can do for him if I cannot visit? How are other families navigating social isolation and seniors?” – Jeff from Noonday

As painful as it is to not be able to visit your loved one at a nursing home or assisted living facility, the situation on the inside may be even more troubling. While most of us are physically distancing from others, wearing masks in public, washing hands frequently, and relying on video chatting for work […]

“My mother resides in an assisted living facility, and I am so anxious about her health. What should I know about caregivers and COVID-19? How do I know that my mom is getting the care she needs if I am not allowed to visit her? Do you have any advice for adult children like me who are worried about our loved ones?” –Andrea from Wickford

These are strange days indeed, and the concern about containing the spread of this invisible enemy, COVID-19, is the most important thing we can do today and in the coming weeks to keep everyone, especially our beloved elderly population, safe. Because seniors are at the highest risk for complications, it’s imperative that we all follow […]

“Am I right to assume you don’t hear much about seniors with high blood pressure? My father was just diagnosed, and I didn’t realize it was a big deal at his age. Why should we be concerned about hypertension in the elderly?”—Joseph in Dunwoody

I understand your point; it does seem that people are usually younger when first diagnosed, but according to the American Heart Association, the risk for developing high blood pressure does increase with age. It’s also seen more often in men until women reach menopause; at around 55-64, men and women have the same risk of […]

“Every year I want to make resolutions to improve myself, but being a caregiver always gets in the way. Is there any hope that I can make a change this time without feeling guilty?”—Wendy from Smyrna

  I’m not a huge fan of resolutions because people tend to put too much pressure on themselves to set huge and often unattainable goals. Life as a caregiver is hard enough as it is without making yourself feel like you are not good enough or deserving of happiness. That being said, there are several […]

“My mother has always had a sweet tooth, but lately, I can’t seem to get her to eat anything but sugary snacks. I am worried this sugar addiction could lead to diabetes. Can that happen, and if so, is there anything I can do to prevent it?” – Margaret from Suwanee

You are right to be concerned about your mother’s sweet tooth; in fact, many seniors do tend to prefer sweets over more savory foods, thanks to a loss of sense of smell and taste as we age. The preference for sweets, if unchecked, could potentially lead to a prediabetic condition or type II diabetes. According […]

“The older my father gets, the more unsteady he is. If he falls, I don’t think I could get him up by myself. I wish I knew how to help him improve his balance, so he stays on his feet!” – Jarrod from Country Lake

Preventing falls is a priority for caregivers and families, and you make a good point about the importance of balance. Healthcare providers tend to focus on the falls, but sometimes overlook improving balance as a part of the equation. And because falls are one of the leading causes of injury and death in seniors, it […]

“My best friends’ mother was just diagnosed with macular degeneration, and now I’m worried my mother may be next. Is there anything we can do to keep Mom from going blind?” – Candy in Holly Springs

I can understand why you would be concerned about your loved one developing macular degeneration; after all, it is the leading cause of vision loss in people over 50. According to The National Eye Institute, the number of people diagnosed with MD is expected to exceed five million by 2050. Those staggering statistics mean that […]

“Even when it’s as hot as an oven, my mother keeps the windows closed and bundles up in a sweater, and then she complains about feeling sweaty and clammy. Help! I don’t have the patience to deal with her, and I am worried she is going to get overheated.” – Dawn in Kennesaw

  With the temperatures hovering in the 80’s and 90’s for days on end, it’s no wonder that you are concerned about your mother’s safety. Seniors are at risk for heat-related illnesses such as dehydration, heat exhaustion, heat syncope (fainting), and heat stroke. Why is it such a big concern?  The elderly are disproportionately affected […]