6 Tips for New Caregivers During the COVID Pandemic

6 Tips for New Caregivers During the COVID Pandemic - AmeriBest Home Care

Stuck at home these days, many of us are finding ourselves having to take on new roles that we would otherwise pay someone else to fill. And this can be a little scary to do without positive guidance.

If you’ve suddenly found yourself having to act as a family caregiver, here are 6 tips and tricks of the trade.

Write things down.

When you’re caring for someone else, it’s important to stay organized. It’s all too easy to forget someone else’s schedule, so make things simple for yourself and write things down.

If you prefer typing that’s cool too.

Just having a mapped-out list of what needs to be done and when can easily knock down the stress levels a few notches.

Automate as much as possible.

Another easy way to keep track of everything is to set up daily reminders. There are a ton of apps out there that can help with medication scheduling, appointment tracking, as well as just general to-do list entries.

These apps will not only help remind you of what needs to be done, but also give you the extra push to get up and get going.

Don’t be afraid to ask for outside help.

One of the biggest mistakes new caregivers make is thinking that they have to take care of everything themselves.

But the truth is, there are plenty of people able and willing to help. If you’re getting overwhelmed, stressed, or just want some guidance- don’t be afraid to ask for outside help.

Call up friends, family, or professional home care aides. And, don’t let yourself get to a mental breaking point before you do so.

Asking for help demonstrates responsibility and caring.

Schedule family time.

It’s easy to get so wrapped up in the work of caregiving, that you start to ignore the fun of it.

Caregiving is a remarkable task that lets you care, bond, and connect with your senior. If you’re not enjoying the work you do, you’re missing out on the core of caregiving.

To rekindle the spark, schedule some fun family time. This could be watching some TV together in the evening, building a project together in the afternoons, or even just bonding over some old photos in the basement. The main idea is to find something you both enjoy and set aside quality time for each other.

Watch your health.

You’ve probably heard this before, but you can’t take care of others if you don’t take care of yourself.

Letting yourself get run down and weary is no way to treat yourself as a caregiver. If you want to give your senior the best care possible, then you have to be up for the challenge and in good spirits. And, in order to feel that way, you have to take care of your own health too.

This means, taking breaks when you need them, giving yourself some alone time to refresh, watching your diet and fitness, and being overall kind to yourself.

Which leads us to our last tip…

Speak to yourself with compassion.

If you missed something on your to-do list, or you just didn’t have time to get something done- don’t stress. The worst thing you can do is beat yourself up over something you’re only just getting the hang of. You wouldn’t do that to others, so don’t do that to yourself.

Instead, look at where you went wrong with a non-judgmental perspective. Understand what led you to make that mistake and learn from it. Then move on and give yourself some compassion.

You’re doing the best you can.

Employment Opportunities! Become a Paid Caregiver

Employment Opportunities! - AmeriBest Home Care

During these past months, unemployment rates have skyrocketed as millions of Americans apply for unemployment benefits.

It’s no stretch to say that these have been tough times to navigate through.

But, they are certainly not impossible.

If you’re one of the many Americans worried about the economy to come and your finances, we might just have the perfect idea for you:

Become a paid caregiver!

What’s in the job?

As a paid at-home caregiver, you’ll be helping elderly live their best lives in the comfort of their homes.

All caregiving is done in the patients’ own homes. You’ll head on over to your client (or multiple clients depending on the schedule you set for yourself) and help with activities such as:

  • Dressing
  • Bathing
  • Meal prep
  • Light housework
  • Companionship

Why become a caregiver?

The bottom line: caregiving is a stress-free job that pays well.

As a caregiver, you won’t have to worry about making intense deadlines or coming up with the next biggest idea. You just need to concentrate on the little things: being compassionate, courteous, and careful.

It’s as rewarding as it is manageable.

And that’s really the best combination for any job.

What’s the time commitment like?

As a paid caregiver, you get to be in control of your own time and create the schedule that works best for you. Whether full time, part time, or per diem, the time commitment is up to you.

We know that some of our caregivers use this job as a supplement for their regular income. Which is why we provide maximum flexibility. After all, caregiving is about helping others grow upward, not chaining them downward.

However, we also know that many of caregivers come to us for a fresh start. To begin a new career in a place they can truly belong. And, for those employees, we do everything in our power to help them succeed.

AmeriBest is Hiring!

AmeriBest Home Care is currently seeking caring and motivated individuals to become a part of our family of healthcare workers.

Whether you’re looking for a new career or a part time gig, this could be the opportunity for you. You don’t need any prior experience. Just a good attitude and a willingness to learn.

At AmeriBest Home Care, we’ll train you and set you on the path to great caregiving.

We’ll teach you the necessary skills to succeed in the home healthcare world. And, we’ll be with you every step of the way, guiding you through the field and supporting you as your caregiving career develops.

At AmeriBest Home Care, we care about our employees just as much as we care about our clients. Which is why, we offer full-time benefits such as medical, dental, vision, 401K and paid time off.

How to apply?

Simply fill out the online form at the bottom of the page here: https://www.ameribesthomecare.com/join-our-team/

Or, give us a call at 215-925-3313.

Come join AmeriBest, today!

We’re not just an agency, we’re a healthcare family.

7 Stay-at-Home Activities for Elderly and Caregivers

7 Stay-at-Home Activities for Elderly and Caregivers - AmeriBest Home Care

Don’t let the days slip away just because you’re indoors!
Here are 7 at-home activities for the elderly and caregivers:

Pick up a new book.

Or listen to a new podcast. Whether educational or fictional, stories are a great way to get you feeling happy and motivated. You can even get an online book club going. Check with your local library for a pre-existing book club. Or, start your own with friends and family.

Never underestimate the power of a good book.

Clean up and redecorate.

It’s easy to fall into a rut when you’re stuck at home, looking at the same scenery day after day. Luckily there’s an easy fix. Spring cleaning and redecorating! If you’re not into big house projects, sometimes just organizing a room or two can make a huge difference as well.

After all, new spaces make for new perspectives.

Take advantage of the internet.

With social distancing at the core of society right now, tons of companies and individuals have begun making their content available on the internet. And, many of them are free. If you’re looking for something to do at home, look online for Broadway shows, ballet productions, operas, e-sports, educational courses, exercise classes, museum tours, zoo tours, and more.

There’s so much happening on the web right now!

Sit down and chat.

We’re always so busy running to get things done, that we often miss just sitting and talking with our family and friends. But what’s truly more important than connecting with our loved ones?

Grab a cup of coffee, tea, water, whatever you want, and just sit down and chat. If you’re home alone, you can always do this over phone calls and video chats. It’s time to take a breath and slow down.

Soak in some sun.

If you have a backyard or porch, spend at least 15 minutes out in the fresh air. Meditate, think, stare out at the world, eat a snack, make some phone calls, draw. There are tons of things you can do outside in your own yard. If you don’t have a yard, just open a window. Breathing in the crisp air with the sun on your skin will keep you feeling relaxed and happy. Not to mention, help you sleep better at night.

Just don’t forget your sunscreen!

Try out some new recipes.

We eat three meals a day, with drinks and snacks in between. And when we eat so much, eating sometimes becomes a boring chore. But it doesn’t have to be. Spice things up with some new recipes. You can search on Pinterest and YouTube for some fresh meal ideas. Or, create your own!

And, don’t forget to take pictures. Your family and friends will love to see what you’ve come up with.

Produce your own content.

Now, while the world is homebound, people from all over are craving for online content. If you’ve ever wanted to start your own YouTube channel, TikTok account, podcast. Or, if you’ve ever wanted to write stories, give advice, provide tips, or just share your life story, now is your time to shine! It’s easy to start, and you’re sure to make some friends along the way.

Have fun and give back to the world in a way that only you can do.

9 Springtime Activities for Every Type of Senior

9 Springtime Activities for Every Type of Senior - AmeriBest Home Care

Welcome in the cheery spring weather with some new activities for your senior.

As spring is all about beginnings and renewals, what better way to enjoy the season than to explore some new hobbies.

Here’s a list of 9 springtime activities to help your loved seniors make the most of their time.

There is always something for everyone!

For active seniors:

Grow a vegetable garden.

Or flower, or fruit, or herb. It doesn’t matter what kind of garden your senior plants, as long as your senior is out in the fresh air and sunshine. This can be a great alone time activity. And, it can also be a great social activity if done with a gardening club.

Visit a nature reserve.

Nature walks are relaxing, alternative to hikes. Hiking can be strenuous for seniors, but walking around a nature reserve gives them the same amount of outdoor pleasure and exercise. Make it a trip and spend the day at a nearby nature reserve. Or, make it a quick activity and go for just an hour or two.

Start spring cleaning.

Like we mentioned before, spring is all about starting anew. And nothing says starting anew than a nice clean house. Kick off the springtime by throwing away old baggage and clearing a space for the new. Not to mention, a dust-free house makes for easier breathing.

For the meditative seniors:

Have a picnic.

If your senior is fond of simple relaxation, going for a picnic is a perfect way to get your senior soaking up the sun’s vitamin D and enjoying some crisp air. You can go to a nearby park. Or, you can stay in the comfort of your lawn.

Try outdoor yoga classes.

Outdoor yoga is another great way to get your senior outdoors. Yoga is perfect for seniors who love to meditate and unwind. And, it’s got plenty of health benefits to boot.

Go fishing.

If you’re looking for a quiet activity, away from others, fishing is a great escape. Your senior can enjoy buying a rod, trying new baits, and, best of all, catching some delicious dinner.

For the artsy seniors:

Take a walk along the beach.

Most people don’t go to the beach until the summer. Which makes going to the beach during springtime that much better, because you’ll have the whole beach to yourself. It may be too cold to actually swim, but walking along the shore, napping in the sun, and collecting seashells is always fun. And, the ocean air is great for healthy breathing.

Host a paint night.

Or even paint and sip. This could be a great night to bring the family together. Or, a time to bring over your senior’s friends. Whomever the company, it’s just important that your seniors socialize and have a good time.

For seniors at home:

Explore virtual reality.

Virtual reality headsets let you explore the world without going far. Your senior can fish, hike, walk, you name it. All from the comfort of their own home. Although slightly expensive, VR headsets are truly worthwhile experience for seniors stuck at home.

Senior Caregiver Health at Risk: Facts, Signs, and Solutions

Senior Caregiver Health at Risk - AmeriBest Home Care

When it comes to seniors and caregiving, attention is always placed on the seniors’ well-being.

Which makes sense.

However, there’s another important player in the caregiving cycle that deserves attention too. And, that another player is the one giving the care- the dutiful family member who spends the day in and day out helping to care for the loved senior, and who often gets overlooked or overworked.

In this article, we’ll go through the facts of caregiver health, the signs of an overworked caregiver, and some practical solutions.

The facts behind caregiver health.

As more and more baby boomers enter their senior age, more family members are being called upon to care for their parents, grandparents, uncles, and aunts.

While caregiving is amazing to work and truly exemplifies the meaning of family, it can also be quite a strenuous job. Especially, for those family members who also have their own spouses and children to take care of. Needless to say, the time commitment and workload of caregiving can be difficult to manage.

Unfortunately, this often leads to overworked or overwhelmed caregivers, which can result in poor health. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently reported that of the 18 million Americans who are informal caregivers (meaning, they are not paid for their caregiving services), about 1 in 5 are in roughly moderate or bad health.

Essentially, while caregivers are working to keep their loved seniors in good health, they are letting their own health slip away. A sad consequence that we, at AmeriBest, aim to prevent.

The signs of an overworked caregiver.

When it comes to determining someone’s health, direct questions don’t always work.

Because it is not uncommon for caregivers to brush off questions with “I’m fine” or “I have it under control.” And the problem is that these caregivers really might really be fine at the moment. But burn out can happen in an instant. Informal caregivers are fine until they’re not fine. At which point their physical and mental health may be at serious risk.

So, while open and honest communication is usually the best option, sometimes a little something else is required. Something called tactful observation. 

If you’re worried about a caregiver you love, look out for these tell-tale signs of burnout:

  1. Persistent tiredness
  2. Anxiety or sadness
  3. Forgetfulness
  4. Weak immune system (I.e. getting sick easily and often)
  5. Loss of weight

Obviously, everyone exhibits signs of burnout differently. But, if you notice any of these signs within yourself or a caregiver you love, consider that it might be time to intervene and help.

The option for help.

Whether it’s for you, a friend, or a loved one- don’t be afraid to call a home care agency for a bit of extra help.

Caregivers often avoid calling for help because they see it as a lack of responsibility on their part. They worry that by calling in someone else to do the job, they are casting off their beloved seniors.

But if you know what home care really is, you know that’s not the case.

With at-home care, family caregivers can come in and out as they please. There are no visiting times and no need to call in advance. Family caregivers can help monitor their seniors’ schedules and care, while also having a professional home care aide to lean on for support and advice.

With at-home care, seniors never feel alone and caregivers never feel overwhelmed.

AmeriBest skills lab kicks off Monday February 17, 2020

AmeriBest skills lab kicks off Monday February 17, 2020 - AmeriBest Home Care

Please note that the Skills Lab is going to be temporarily canceled due to Coronavirus! Stay tuned.

Have you heard what’s new at AmeriBest Home Care? “Skills Lab”!

AmeriBest is offering the opportunity for current Personal Care Assistants to receive hands-on skilled training in a safe environment in our fully equipped new skills lab. Our skills lab training opportunities follow a structured teaching concept and takes place under the supervision of the clinical department.

Call AmeriBest’s main number at 215-925-3313 and choose option #5 (Nursing Department) to register for any particular class.

 

FAQ

Q: Is skills lab paid training?
A: Skill lab is paid training at the state minimum wage rate; outside of the PCA schedule

 

Q: Is lunch provided?
A: Lunch is provided for some training classes; not all.

 

Q:  Will I become certified?
 A: The ONLY class that offers certification is the CPR training class.

 

Q:  Does the skills lab fulfill the annual in-service requirement?
A: No, PCAs will still be required to complete 12hrs of in-services each year in order to remain compliant with HR.


AmeriBest Home Care is dedicated to providing high-quality comprehensive home health and personal care services to valued members of our community.

Stay Up-To-Date on The Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Philadelphia, PA

Stay Up-To-Date on The Coronavirus - AmeriBest Home Care

Dear AmeriBest clients, caregivers and staff, here are the resources for you to stay updated on coronavirus (COVID-19).

What you need to know about coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) – CDC Brochure.

COVID-19 in Pennsylvania updates – Pennsylvania DOH Brochure.

For more updates by the CDC, please visit their website:
English
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WHAT IS Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)?

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a respiratory illness that can spread from person to person. The virus that causes COVID-19 is a novel coronavirus that was first identified during an investigation into an outbreak in Wuhan, China.

Coronavirus, a group of viruses that cause diseases in mammals and birds. In humans, the virus causes respiratory infections. 3D illustration.

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS of Coronavirus COVID-19?

Symptoms of the COVID-19 can include:
• Fever
• Cough
• Shortness of breath

The symptoms may appear in as few as two days or as long as 14 days after exposure. Reported illnesses have ranged from people with little to no symptoms to people being severely ill and dying.

WHAT CAN YOU DO To Protect Yourself and Your Loved Ones Against Coronavirus?

  • Cover any coughs or sneezes with your elbow, do not use your hands!
  • Clean surfaces frequently, such as countertops, light switches, cell phones and other frequently touched areas.
    Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.
  • Contain – if you are sick, stay home until you are feeling better.
Healthy lifestyle, hygiene, and prevention of viral and bacterial diseases.

Learn More American Heart Month This February

Learn More American Heart Month This February - AmeriBest Home Care

Humans are constantly worrying about dangers across the world, deep at sea, or high in the sky. We indulge our fantasies with far off worries, forgetting to look at what is actually nearby.

And in doing so, we miss the dangers lurking right outside our own doorsteps. Dangers that could otherwise be avoided. Dangers that need our full attention.

Which leads us to the topic of heart disease, one of the leading causes of death.

So this February, focus on the here and now, and help us honor American Heart Month.

What is American Heart Month?

Thousands of Americans suffer from heart diseases, heart attacks, and heart failures. Unfortunately, seniors and those around them often don’t recognize the symptoms of heart disease. This lets the problem sit unattended to and grow until it’s almost too late.

That’s why February’s American Hearth Month is so important. This is the time of year that Americans all over the country dedicate time and energy to bringing valuable, life-saving information to the attention of all.

Learn more about heart disease and help raise awareness.

Your knowledge just might save your loved one’s life.

What are some signs of heart disease?

There are many known types of heart disease. But what most of them have in common is that they are essentially a buildup of plaque around the arteries. The problem with this is that the plaque then takes up room in the arteries, narrowing the amount of space that the blood can move through. This means, that the heart has to work that much harder to pump blood through the body.

Because the heart is over worked and for less blood circulation, heart disease can often lead to heart attacks, strokes, or heart failure.

Of course, different heart diseases exhibit different symptoms.

However, here are some to be aware of:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Dizziness
  • Chest pain
  • Skin discoloration
  • Irregular heartbeat

What are ways to prevent heart disease?

Eat healthy.

Foods like fish, oatmeal, olive oil, and flaxseed are considered to be great foods for the heart.

Exercise regularly.

Getting in regular exercise is essential to having a healthy heart. It doesn’t have to be an intense workout, but walks and cardio workouts are great for getting the blood pumping and the oxygen in your body moving.

Avoid stress.

Too much stress, and for too long, can actually have physical ramifications for one’s heart. So take things step by step, avoiding too much stress.

What to do if you see someone having a heart attack?

If you notice your senior experiencing any symptoms of a heart attack, don’t panic. Call 911 immediately, even if you’re unsure. For the sake of your loved one, it’s better to make a mistake calling than not to call at all. And, trust us, the police will be forgiving.

If your senior is unconscious and help has not arrived yet, start CPR. A dispatcher from the police station should talk you through the motions. Or at least how to do basic chest compressions.

Stay alert and educated for American Heart Month.

10 Ways to Help Seniors Avoid Flu Season

10 Ways to Help Seniors Avoid Flu Season - AmeriBest Home Care

Keep the house warm.

This is one of the most basic things on the list, but one of the most vital. Seniors, like all of us, catch viruses more easily when they get chilled. For that reason, it’s important to keep the house warm. Turn up the heat at night, and always keep throw blankets on hand.

Exercise regularly.

Though it may seem counterintuitive to go outside, fresh air and sunlight are necessary for a healthy body. Not only does the sun give off crucial vitamins, it also increases serotonin levels in the body, which helps with a good night’s sleep. And, you can’t have a healthy body without deep restorative sleep.

Eat superfoods.

Super foods are nature’s gift to us. Foods like ginger, spinach, kale, turmeric, and garlic are natural immunity boosters. They’re easy to add to almost any meal, and taste good too.

Don’t skimp out on your super foods.

Drink lots of liquids.

As always, water is the best option. However, as long as your senior is getting in enough fluids- coffee, tea, and seltzer are good choices too.

Wash your hands.

This is a super easy way to prevent outside germs from spreading inside your home. It’s a great habit to develop sooner rather than later.

Wash your hands whenever you come back into the house. Use soap. And, make sure your senior does too.

Get a flu shot.

It’s important to get your flu shots before the flu season starts. Or, at least at the very beginning of it. Don’t wait until peak contagion time, because by then you or your senior may have already caught the flu.

Explore natural remedies.

If you’re not one for flu shots, look into natural preventative measures. Consult with your doctor about which vitamins and minerals your senior’s body may be lacking. Then, look to fill those missing nutrients with supplements.

Think positively.

Sometimes, ill health stems from ill thoughts.
In other words- mind over matter.

Keep your senior thinking positively to keep your senior healthy. If you feel your loved one is having trouble with this, try playing happy music around the house and make sure he or she is getting enough sunshine.

Keep the house clean.

Germs tend to grow more easily in unclean areas.
Not untidy, but unclean. This means that it’s important to clean regularly, and not let the dirt pile up. Wipe down countertops, soak the dishes, sweep the floors, and dust around the windowsills and corners.

Your lungs will thank you for the cleaning.

Don’t touch your face.

A good tip when you’re outside of the house is to never touch your face. Specifically, your mouth, nose, and eyes. Getting germs on your hands is bad enough, but it’s even worse when you give those germs direct access to your insides.

So, always be weary of where you put your hands.

The Truth Behind Caregiving: Stats and Prognosis

The Truth Behind Caregiving - AmeriBest Home Care

A Caregiver Defined

Before we jump into the technical details, let’s take a moment to define what a caregiver really is and does.

In its basic form, caregiving is simply caring for the needs and wellbeing of another. This could be for any age- children, young adults, or seniors. And so, a caregiver is someone who provides this caregiving service for another individual.

Now, within the caregiving world, caregivers are divided into two categories regardless of the age of their recipients: volunteer caregivers and paid caregivers.

Volunteer caregivers are generally those who care for a family member and thus do not get paid.

Paid caregivers, on the other hand, are often professional health aides who require a salary or stipend to work.

However, as we’ll explain further on, you can actually be a caregiver for your family and get paid. Stay tuned!

The Facts Uncovered

  • In a study done in 2015, Americans were placed at around 34.2 million for the number of unpaid caregivers that provided service to adults aged 50 and older. Which is basically saying, that caregiving is in high demand, and yet not many caregivers are receiving compensation.
  • In 2013, the economic value of volunteer caregivers was placed at 470 billion dollars. That means, that the amount of work volunteer caregivers complete, as well as the type of work they provide, is worth billions. And yet, many caregivers don’t know that they can actually be getting paid for the valuable services they provide.
  • Females make up most of the caregiving world. Although the number of male caregivers is on the rise, most of the work still currently lands on women’s shoulders. Women often spend more time caregiving for family and clients than men do. This means that women have less time to commit to themselves and/or a full-time job.

Family Members Turned Caregivers

Unfortunately, we are living through a time where there are simply not enough caregivers to go around. Many place this crisis on the fact that now most baby boomers are reaching an age where they need more at-home health care.

For this reason, many family members take up the role of primary caregiver for senior parents and loved ones, instead of hiring outside help. While caregiving is a wonderfully selfless job, if it’s done unpaid, it makes life a little harder on the caregiver.

When you’ve got a full-time job, kids, hobbies, and your own health to consider, it’s difficult to come home and give the rest of your energy to caregiving. Especially, if you’re pressed for money and time.

A simple solution to this: Get paid to be a caregiver.

Getting Paid to be a Caregiver with AmeriBest

It’s no secret- you can get paid to be a caregiver.

At AmeriBest, we’ll help you find the position that suits you best.

Then, we’ll train you!

No stress, no worry.

We want you to be the very best caregiver you can be. And we’ll give you all the tools, education, and experience necessary to accomplish that goal. But most importantly, we’ll get you the money you deserve.

With the AmeriBest training program, you’re not just learning any old task. You’re learning a career. And in doing so, you’re becoming a part of a caregiving family that has your best interests at heart.

When you’re ready to get paid for the work you do, give us a call at 1800-HOMECARE or 215-925-3313.