How To Find The Best Home Health Care Help For Your Loved One

How To Find The Best Home Health Care Help For Your Loved One

Taking care of a loved one is never an easy job, and when they become ill or unable to care for themselves at all, it’s physically, emotionally, and mentally demanding. It can become overwhelming, and many people who take on the role of caregiver choose to have in-home health care help. However, even that task can be difficult, because finding the right helper for your needs is important, and there are many things to consider, such as the financial end of things and whether health insurance will assist in paying for help, as well as how to keep yourself healthy and happy.

There are many facets to taking care of a loved one, so it’s important to do some research and figure out the best option for you and your family before making any decisions.

Here are a few of the best tips on how to get started.

Find out what insurance covers

If your loved one has been hospitalized or suffered an injury, they likely qualify under Medicare or another insurance plan for a licensed nurse or speech therapist to come into the home for a short period of time to help with rehabilitation and healthcare, as well as someone to come and help with daily activities, such as bathing and preparing meals. However, most insurance companies won’t pay for these personal helpers if that is the only care your loved one needs. It varies from state to state, so check local guidelines to see if your loved one qualifies for assistance.

Housekeeping

If you’re spending most of your time taking care of your loved one and find that you’re falling behind when it comes to household chores, consider hiring a housekeeper. Having someone come in to help with housekeeping once or twice a week could really free up some of your time and allow you to focus on your loved one’s needs rather than worrying about getting the dishes clean or the laundry done.

Plan ahead

Because your time is valuable, it’s important to plan ahead as much as possible. This means making sure your loved one will never be left alone in the event that you have an emergency to attend to, and also gathering any paperwork that is pertinent to your loved one’s care and wellbeing. Keep everything–medical forms, notes from the doctor, a list of medications, a contact list of doctors and personal caregivers–together in one folder so it can be easily accessed by both you and anyone who would be coming in to help you.

Take big changes seriously

If your loved one is having trouble sleeping or eating, it could be more than something physical causing the problem. It’s important to watch for big changes and engage a counselor or therapist who could come to the home and speak with your loved one if necessary.

“When ill people stop caring about eating, it’s often because their self-esteem is waning — they no longer think they’re worth being fed and cared for. Another huge appetite-killer is depression, something 50 percent of elders struggle with,” says aging expert James Huysman.

Take care of yourself

Because you’re the primary caregiver for your loved one, it’s important to make sure your needs are met as well. You won’t be able to make sure they’re taken care of if you’re unwell or stressed out, and because caregiving is such a demanding job that takes a toll on a person both physically and emotionally, experiencing anxiety or stress is not uncommon. Find things that relax you and leave you feeling good about yourself so that you can combat those issues effectively.

Remember that there are many resources for the elderly; do some research online to find out what your state or city offers in the way of assistance.

Author

Kelli is part of DeployCare, which offers support to service members and their families.

How Air Duct Cleaning Can Improve Your Indoor Air Quality

In today’s world technology is constantly expanding. Some of the technology can be seen in the latest phones and some of this technology can even been seen in home products. Today’s homes and home products are built so much different than what they used to be. This basically means that homes are sealed tighter than they ever have been before. However, with these airtight homes this can lead to concerns with indoor air quality. Due to this revelation, more and more people are considering air duct cleaning services to improve indoor air quality.

Every home regardless of how clean it is will contain a certain amount of dust. Dust can be a major contributor to allergies. Every time the heating and air unit comes on it causes this dust to be circulated throughout the home. Your unit sucks and blows air, so most of this dust is sucked back into your vents where it will be stored unit the unit kicks back on again. Of course, the filter catches a lot of this dust, but the truth is that it can’t catch all of it. This is where a duct cleaning services can come in handy.

Exploring Other Indoor Air Quality Products

When air duct cleaners come out to your home and clean your ducts, this is not the end of the process. Sure, a home air duct cleaning will improve the indoor air quality, but How Air Duct Cleaning Can Improve Your Indoor Air Qualitythere might be other steps that you need to take. For instance, if your home is particularly dirty or dusty then you might need to do an overhaul on the home or the vent cleaning will just be a huge waste of time. Air duct cleaning companies also offer a wide variety of other products like UV light and MERV filters that can be installed on your system to greatly improve the indoor air quality.

Vent Cleaning Service

When you hire professional air duct cleaners to perform a vent cleaning service, you will need to inquire about how the task is completed. Vent cleaners will gladly sit down with you to go over this process, which involves utilizing powerful vacuums and rotary brushes. The rotary brushes utilized air in duct cleaning services will break the debris loose from the interior walls of the ductwork. The vacuum will then suction up the debris and place it into a collection container. The home air duct cleaning team will dispose of the debris in the proper manner when they return back to company.

Improves Air Quality

Duct cleaning services is a necessity for improving indoor air quality. This process will remove all the debris out of the air duct system and eradicate fungus and bacteria. Once the vent cleaning process is complete, you will immediately notice a difference in the indoor air quality. You may also notice that you home smells better because bacteria and fungus emits a pendant odor that is very noticeable. Poor indoor air quality will lead to upper respiratory ailments, which is something that you will want to avoid at all cost.

Improves Air Quality

Removes Dirt and Debris

Air duct cleaning services can undeniably improve your home’s air quality. This is the case because this specific service will remove dirt and debris from your duct system. If you leave the dirt and debris in the ducts, it will be blown into your home when the HVAC unit turns on. Venting cleaning is capable of removing the dirt and debris. Once these contaminants are removed, they cannot be pushed into your home’s atmosphere. Home air duct cleaning can be an excellent way to maintain immaculate air quality and also decrease your allergy outbreaks.

How Air Duct Cleaning Can Improve Your Indoor Air Quality

A Professional Will Seal Off Rooms

If air vent cleaning is not performed correctly, it will actually create more problems. It is absolutely essential to choose vent cleaners that will take additional steps and prevent the dust and debris from spreading during the cleaning process. Professional air duct cleaning companies should use tape and plastic to seal off the vents in most rooms so the dirt and debris will not enter the atmosphere. This will give the air duct cleaners the ability to clean the duct system, without contaminating your home.

When attempting to invest in a vent cleaning service, you should make sure you choose a company that takes these precautions.

Additional Benefits

It is undeniably true that air vent cleaning can improve your home’s air quality. Of course, this isn’t the only thing that vent cleaners can do for you. When you agree to pay for home air vent cleaning, you will be able to improve your health, decrease your electricity bill, eliminate clogs, and prolong the lifespan of your HVAC unit. It is true that air duct cleaning companies will be able to help you maintain pristine air quality. However, you should never overlook the other benefits that they’ll be able to provide.

Pure AirwaysAuthor Bio

Pure Airways is a leading provider of air duct cleaning services. The company has been in business for countless years and has truly revolutionized the art of duct cleaning.

Hot Tub Happiness: 3 Tips for Installing and Caring for Your Own Spa

Hot Tub Happiness 3 Tips For Installing And Caring For Your Own Spa

Hot tubs provide both relaxation and medical benefits. Hot tubs can reduce blood sugar levels and raise body temperatures so that blood flow is increased. It can also help those with injuries that prevent them from doing so on land exercise as the water provides buoyancy. However, before installing a hot tub in your home, there are things you need to know.

Installation of a Hot Tub

Install your hot tub in an area that is easily accessible. You want enough room that you can perform maintenance and keep the tub clean. The surface must be level and be able to support the weight of the tub. Some spas require 220-volt electricity which could mean running new electrical service to the spa. Even those that can be plugged into 110-volt outlets may require additional circuits. Keep in mind that a great deal of heat and moisture are released from hot tubs, so if you plan to install it inside, you will need proper ventilation to avoid mold and mildew growth. Hot tubs can be installed both inside and outside. Some benefits to installing the tub outside include:

Under a shelter, an outside hot tub can be used year round

There is no risk of chemical odors inside the home

No mold and mildew build up if the hot tub is in an open area

Fewer space limitations

It is also important to remember that spas can pose a drowning danger. Even if the cover is very heavy, small children have been known to crawl under them. One of the best options is to add a locking cover if small children will be near the hot tub at any time.

hot tub

Regular Maintenance

A 600-gallon hot tub with five people in it will accumulate an equal amount of oil and dirt as a standard swimming pool with 250 people. Keep a skimmer handy to remove any stray debris and brush the sides of the tub each week to prevent algae growth. Drain the water at least every three months and clean the surface thoroughly. Change or clean the filter often as this is your first line of defense in keeping your spa clean. The manual that came with your hot tub should explain how to clean or replace the filter. Always keep your hot tub covered when not in use to conserve heat and reduce evaporation as well as for safety reasons.

Testing and Treating

Just like a swimming pool, you need to chemically treat the water to prevent bacterial growth. You will need to test the hot tub chemicals for pH in the water as high levels of pH can irritate skin as can pH levels that are too low. You must test for calcium to avoid scaly deposits as well. Chlorine is the most common chemical treatment for hot tubs, but it can sometimes cause skin irritation and damage clothing. Bromine or natural treatments are available that cause less skin irritation and don’t leave the odor of chlorine on clothing or skin. Some new tubs are available with saltwater systems that keep the water clean. Some newer hot tubs are also equipped with an ozone generator which produces ozone in the water. This can help reduce the number of chemicals you need to use but will not replace them completely. In addition, ozone can be a dangerous gas. If your hot tub will be inside, you may want to avoid an ozone generator in your hot tub. Failure to properly treat your hot tub can lead to illness which can include:

Gastrointestinal Problems

Skin rashes

Ear infections

Respiratory infections

Legionella

Staphylococcus infections

A hot tub can provide many hours of fun and relaxation. However, it is critical to follow these three steps in order to keep your friends and family safe when they use your spa.

Carpets: A Source of Pollution in Our Homes?

Your home feels like home because it is safe and secure—you trust it and feel confident that it is a healthy, protected environment for you and your family.

But what if your home is making your family sick because of invisible toxins in your carpets that you’re not aware of?

Carpets act like giant sponges, absorbing all of the toxins, pollutants, and bacteria that we track in from the outside. They soak up the invisible pollutants that are found inside our house as well, like the ones found in mold or cleaning solutions. Because carpets are designed to hide things like dirt and grime and look cleaner than they actually are, we usually don’t realize all the harmful things they contain.

Not only do they soak up what we track onto them, but carpets themselves (especially new ones) often contain toxic chemicals. Very few carpets today are made using natural products or by natural processes. The adhesive glue, the carpet cleaners and shampoos, the loose fibers—they all contain harmful chemicals that can lead to health problems for your family.

Keep your family safe by keeping your carpets clean and toxin-free. Check out this infographic that illustrates how pollutants are spread to your carpets and shows you how to maintain them so that your family is kept healthy and safe from the harmful things that collect on your floors.

Carpets: A Source of Pollution in Our Homes?

About the Author:

Emily Childers is an author for West Coast Restoration & Cleaning—a family-owned and operated company, located in the heart of San Diego. They have years of experience and research dealing with the elimination of harmful chemicals and toxins that pollute homes and threaten the health and safety of families.

Cost-Efficient Solutions for Bacteria-Free Water at Home

Cost-Efficient Solutions for Bacteria-Free Water at Home

Having in mind the fact that 1 in 10 people in the world lacks access to safe water, it’s no wonder that this so-called water crisis is a number one global risk based on the impact on society. Of course, it’s a more common problem in the developing countries but actually, everyone’s affected. That’s why inventors and engineers are trying so hard to find efficient yet affordable solutions for purifying water. Here are some of the cost-efficient solutions you can use in your own home.

Trusting carbon

Activated carbon or charcoal is treated with oxygen to open up a bunch of pores between the carbon atoms increasing the surface of the carbon and allowing it to absorb many chemicals and particles. In short, that’s how carbon filters work. It’s a process called adsorption and it’s effective for removing sediments, VOCs, taste and odor from water. Once the pores are full, the filters need to be replaced since filtering will stop. It’s quite environmentally-friendly and cost-efficient, not to mention the low maintenance it entails.

Using solar energy

The oldest solution for bacteria-free water is to boil it over the fire but you can do the same by using solar energy. By simply leaving the bottle of water in the sun long enough, you’ll get the same effect. UV radiation will kill the microbes and your water will be safe to drink. In other versions, dirt and contaminants are eliminated through the process of evaporation. This method was presented after the big earthquake in Haiti in 2010 but now you can even purchase a device carefully designed for this solution.

Cost-Efficient Solutions for Bacteria-Free Water at Home

Relying on the UV radiation

Since not everyone has the option to use solar energy on a daily basis, engineers have come up with a UV filter for disinfecting the water in your home. It works with strong lamps that produce UV rays. A UV water filter with sterilizer is easy to maintain and doesn’t produce harmful chemicals. Not a single microbe can survive the UV radiation so you’ll be sure you’re protected. Another advantage to this method is that it won’t change the taste of your water, unlike some chemicals – chlorine for instance. Simply put a UV filter under your sink and don’t worry about it – until the next annual service.

Going with ceramic

In 2008, Cambodia was provided with ceramic water filters. Because of that, UNICEF was awarded by the International Water Association. Those filters are made of clay mixed with combustible materials, such as rice husks or sawdust. After that, the filters are shaped to look like flowerpots and fired in a kiln. Combustible material burns in this process, leaving tiny pores in ceramics which serve as a water filtration system. It’s a quite simple system but it removes most of the bacteria from the water. Cambodia, for example, has reduced diarrheal illnesses by 50 percent since they got the ceramic filters.

Disinfecting water with chlorine

Chlorine is widely used in pool sanitation as well as for disinfecting the tap water. In a process called water chlorination, chlorine or hypochlorite is added to the water. It can prevent waterborne diseases so you can thank chlorine for not having cholera, dysentery, or typhoid. Chlorine is a strong oxidizing agent so it kills the microbes via the oxidation. It’s usually used in community water supply so the water is already clean before it comes to your household.

Safe water is a major problem all over the world, but nowadays there are so many cheap solutions for every home. Try some of these methods and see what works best for your household – either one will provide you with the drinks of all drinks – pure water.

 

Dog Friendly Offices

Having a dog friendly office is beneficial to employers and employees in a number of advantageous ways. This infographic shows how having a dog in your work office can increase productivity, help employee retention and lower the number of sick days staff take.

For dog lovers, dog-friendly offices are welcome – why leave your pet at home when he can sit beside you while you work? When you become stressed, reach down and stroke your dog and the love hormone Oxytocin will be released into your bloodstream  helping to lower blood pressure and de-stress you.

Dogs in the work place can also help improve employee morale and attract a younger workforce, as nearly 50% of people who completed the survey stated that they would be more likely to apply for a job if they could take their dog to work with them.

Large employers, including Google, Amazon and Ben and Jerrys are taking the lead, so to speak, by having dog-friendly office events and days. While all employers are encouraged by events such as Bring Your Dog To Work Day to raise money for charities that are dedicated to dog welfare.

The benefits of having a dog-friendly office are highlighted in the guide, along with ways to make an office more dog-friendly.

”Making
Making your Office Dog Friendly by Euroffice.

 

HOW TO GET RID OF THE INVISIBLE TOXINS IN YOUR HOME?

Did you know that air in your home can be 5 times more polluted than the air outside? Perhaps, this sounds unbelievable, but our important tips will make you avoid all the risks that may impair your health, and you will instantly breathe easier!

pollution

Although you try to keep your home clean and safe on regular basis, there is a big threat to your well-being that isn’t visible to the naked eye. Pollution in your home can sometimes be 2-5 times higher than outdoors since the air in the house can be saturated with pollen, mold, pet dander, and pollutants from household cleaning products. During winter, the situation doesn’t get any better – weatherproofing combined with heated, dry air can boost indoor pollution levels even higher with airborne toxins, lowering levels of humidity. The combination of the two can cause severe allergies, asthma, respiratory difficulties and even heart attacks.

Since we spend 60% of our time in our homes, it’s time to clear the air and breathe freely!

  1. Crack the window

Every time you think of the opened window when it’s cold outside, it makes your skin crawl! But you should know that sealing a house too tightly doesn’t allow the entry of fresh oxygen or the escape of carbon dioxide that you inhale. As a result, your body doesn’t get the amount of oxygen it needs and it’s no wonder if you feel constantly tired or lethargic.

Since oxygen levels can be especially low in a sealed bedroom after a night sleep, make sure that your bedroom windows be opened in the morning (at least 5-10 minutes), and again before you go to bed at night. This time will be enough to let the sufficient amount of oxygen in and carbon dioxide out and not to chill the rest of the house.

  1. Turn off ventilation fans

Running powerful fans for an extended period of time can redirect exhaust gasses that may include carbon monoxide fumes back into the house, instead of up and out of flue.

Turn exhaust fans off when they’ve done their job or consider setting a manual switch with a timer to limit unnecessary use.

  1. Change filters

Mold from damp basements and lingering spores in air-conditioning systems can become airborne, if the windows are closed. Mold can irritate your eyes, cause allergies and respiratory problems.

Replace filthy heating system filters regularly, recommend air quality experts from Ottawa, since filters lock pollutants that feed mold (human skin cells, pollen, pet dander…). Have your heating system checked annually, and if there are any problems, fix them before you need the heat.

  1. Clean the basement / attic

All different stuff that you stack in the basement stirs up dust triggering allergy symptoms such as: sensitive eyes, wheezing or congestion.

Take the boxes outside to wipe the dust off them. Wash all the blankets, linen or clothes before you use them. It would be a good thing to put on a respiratory mask before you enter the attic or basement to protect yourself from airborne particles that cause irritations and allergies.

  1. Forget about romantic candles

Scented candles that many people enjoy give off more than fragrance – studies show that they can inflame respiratory tract and aggravate asthma, especially if you don’t do the regular dusting. Dust simply loves to ride on particulates that candles give off and enter deep into the lungs to obstruct breathing.

Candles in large jars really look stunning, but it’s time to say good bye to them, since they tend to send even more particulates into the air than the regular ones. If you can’t imagine your home without the soft, candle light glow, choose unscented, taper candles and place them far from vents and other air sources.

 

Stopping the Invasion: 4 Ways to Remove Pests from Your Home

Stopping the Invasion: 4 Ways to Remove Pests from Your Home

Paranoia. We all get it after a home invasion. You may start seeing quick blurs of gray in your peripheral vision, hearing what could have been a scratch or a squeak. Pests are certainly a nuisance, but they can also be dangerous. Rat droppings and various pest excretions can make your family sick. And summer time is the time you need to be on the lookout. According to a company offering pest control in Jenks, Oklahoma, the increased moisture and warm temperatures are perfect breeding conditions for the least desirable creepy-crawlies. To keep your home safe and worry free, not to mention cleaner, consider these four ways to reclaim your habitat.

1) Traps

If you are battling mice or rats, various traps can be your first line of defense. You’ll probably want to start with the typical, old-school, metal mousetrap. Just bait the trap and place it in common traffic areas for the critters. If you can’t handle sadistically waiting for the rat to come across your instant doom trap, there are more humane sticky traps that capture the animal alive. Once immobilized, you can then transfer it to a land far, far away.

2) Baits

If you’re battling smaller, less furry creatures like roaches and ants, baits are a great option. Place them in dark corners and along walls where insects like to hide. The poison not only kills the bugs, but draws them in. This helps get rid of the ones you don’t see. For ants, place the bait near their trail. The ants will carry the bait home to their queen which kills the whole colony.

3) Sprays and Bombs

You may find yourself desperately battling fleas or lice, especially if you have pets in your home. The best way to deal with these tiny, vicious beasts is by spraying your home with poisons like Raid. These sprays should be safe for pets and kids once they dry and can work up to six weeks. Check the bottle for safety information.

You’ll also want to fumigate your home with “bug bombs” if you have the chance. Make sure everyone has somewhere to go for a few hours. Remove your pets from your home. Follow all safety instructions. When you come home, you’ll want to wash dishes, bedding, and any surfaces that were exposed.

4) Combine Efforts

Combining multiple methods is your most effective option, especially in insect infestations. Spray around your walls, doorways, and windows where pests enter your home and put out baits. Though sprays can last for weeks or more, it’s okay to spray as needed to keep your home pest free.

When you’ve exhausted all inexpensive efforts, it’s time to call an exterminator. Your health and peace of mind is worth it!

4 Home Health Hazards You’re Probably Not Aware Of

plumbing

Water and indoor air quality at home can be affected by more than a contaminated water supply or stray pollen finding its way inside. Misinformation about some of the unseen health risks is a major hazard. Here are four home health risks you may want to check your home for.

  1. Hidden Mold and Fungus Spores

Old carpet and rugs exposed to water are breeding grounds for mold and fungus colonies. Dry rugs not cleaned often can harbor the tell-tale musty odor of these respiratory irritants. Rubber or vinyl bath mats are another place mold and fungus will grow underneath virtually undetected without consistent cleaning. Clean and disinfect on top and underneath regularly.

  1. Toxic Gases

Radon is an odorless and tasteless radioactive gas that causes lung cancer. This natural substance is found in soil and rock underneath the home, in some building materials and ground water wells. When the harmful gas is discharged, it can seep inside homes through cracks in the foundation and small openings in walls. Homes that are tightly constructed or have poor ventilation are especially vulnerable. The only way to detect it is through testing. Having your indoor air tested for radon and mitigated, if necessary, may benefit your health.

  1. Bad Pipes

Experiencing low water pressure? Older homes built before the 1900’s, and some as late as the 1950’s, may be serviced by bad pipes that are corroding and crumbling. A Bailey Plumbing recommends making leaky pipes a priority in order to avoid unnecessarily high water bills. Waiting until a faulty pipe bursts–and it eventually will–could rain double trouble including your financial health.

  1. Damaged Flue Pipes or Chimneys

Most masonry chimneys used to vent woodstoves, furnaces or fireplaces have sections of clay flue tile stacked to form the flue liner. Gaps and cracks formed over time can let poisonous gases and compounds escape into your home, and make you sick. Creosote build-up outside the flue increases risk in the event of fire. Have your chimney and flue inspected regularly, and perform maintenance as needed to avoid health hazards and minimize loss of heat efficiency.

Much of your home maintenance can be done yourself. However, unless you are trained for maintaining more complicated elements, hire licensed professionals to perform complicated procedures. By giving your home the attention it deserves you may see an improvement in your own health.

Tips On How To Improve Indoor Air Quality

indoor air quality

Keeping your home clean and healthy is not an easy thing to do as harmful bacteria, viruses and toxins are lurking from each corner. Therefore, you need to clean it on a regular basis to prevent any issues that might occur due to various pollutants. Cleaning surfaces is not nearly enough to keep your home toxin-free. It’s important to pay attention to the quality of the air you’re breathing if you want to make your home truly safe and healthy.

There are several ways to ensure a good ventilation and high quality air in your home. If you want to do everything you can in order to breathe healthy, read these essential tips on how to improve indoor air quality.

One of the best methods to remove pollutants from the indoor air is duct cleaning. There are many reasons to clean the ducts, but the most important one is the fact that dust mites live inside the heating and cooling ducts from which they enter your home and travel to carpets, mattresses and air, causing respiratory issues and allergies.

How frequently should you clean the ducts? It should be done once per year, but whenever you notice mold on heating and cooling components, you should do it immediately. A proper cleaning includes cleaning all of the components and the inside of the heating and ventilating system and applying disinfectant.

Having your air ducts cleaned won’t endanger your health if it’s done properly. So, if you don’t have experience in duct cleaning and you don’t have the necessary tools, it would be probably best to call the professionals who will get everything out of your ducts: harmful microbes, mould, dead insects and small animals, dust mites and debris.

Here’s another good tip: minimize the use of dangerous chemicals. Cleaning products are full of ingredients that can harm your skin and lungs. Always choose low-emitting, green and safe products that have been labeled with Green Seal. If possible, make your own cleaning products, based on lavender, lemon and vinegar.

Dust mites are attracted to warm and humid air, so make sure that you keep your home dry. Relative humidity levels should be lower than 50 percent (somewhere between 30 and 50). If you live in extremely humid climate, think about using dehumidifiers to control moisture and allergens. Make sure that there are no water leaks and open windows after you take a bath.

essential oilsWe all love when our homes smell nice. However, using synthetic fragrances is never a good idea. Chemicals that can be found in air fresheners are far from safe and they are rarely listed on the labels. Avoid risks of using synthetic scents and use only 100 percent organic, natural fresheners or perfume the air in your home with essential oils or slices of lemon or orange.

The last, but not the least important tip (and certainly the easiest one): always open the windows (at least 15 minutes per day) and let fresh air into all rooms. Also, don’t smoke in your home. Smoking cigarettes will surely decrease the quality of indoor air as cigarette smoke contains over 4,000 harmful chemicals!

 

 

 

 

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