A Caregiving Journal has the Potential to Change Your Life for the Better

A Caregiving Journal has the Potential to Change Your Life for the Better

People are quite fond of diaries yet there is comparably little discussion pertaining to caregiving journals. A caregiving journal will lift your spirit, help you avoid a crippling depression and ultimately regain control, at least to a limited extent. If you were to read a caregiving journal from an altruistic Philadelphia care provider, you would find this journal is quite insightful, even if the daily entries were fairly short.

The Power of Caregiving Journals

Caregiving journals might not seem that important on the surface yet they are quite important for individuals who selflessly provide assistance to others. These journals detail daily challenges in the context of caregiving in Philadelphia, oftentimes delving into the frustrations that inevitably arise when providing care for those in need. Writing journal entries after providing care certainly takes time and effort yet doing so will make a meaningful difference in your mental health, boosting your spirit, and ultimately empowering you to continue to provide care as time progresses.

One Part Therapist, One Part Diary

If you were to ask care providers about the merits of writing a caregiving journal, the majority of them would testify their journal is an outlet to vent. Instead of detailing their challenges to friends and family and ultimately bringing them down while chewing up their limited time, caregivers who journal write down their thoughts. The process of venting through writing really is quite cathartic. In fact, plenty of professional care providers including some physicians journal on a daily basis. 

A Caregiving Journal has the Potential to Change Your Life for the Better

Caregiving journals are not limited to a private airing of grievances. Some such journals are more gratitude-oriented, meaning they serve as a medium to express one’s thankfulness for their health and ability to provide care to others in need. Jot down your challenges as well as your moments of joy, humorous experiences, and other events that occur on a daily basis and you will find you gravitate toward your journal. 

Write Rather Than Edit

The beauty of jotting down entries in a caregiving journal is no one else has to read it, meaning it can be written in your handwriting no matter how sloppy it is. This is your opportunity to write down your daily experiences without worrying about the rules of grammar or punctuation. Just be sure to read your journal entries every now and then so you can reflect on prior challenges and also your accomplishments. Ideally, you will wait a few weeks or even a month to read prior journal entries so you have some time to emotionally distance yourself from the experiences chronicled in your journal.

A Caregiving Journal has the Potential to Change Your Life for the Better

AmeriBest Home Care

If you know or suspect you or a loved one can benefit from home care services, reach out to AmeriBest Home Care today. Our Philadelphia team is here to help you live a rewarding life for as long as possible in the comfort of your home. You can contact our team by phone at 215-925-3313. If you prefer to reach out to our team online, you can do so by completing our contact form or by sending an email message to info@ameribest.org.

Legal Matters in Caregiving

Though no one wants to discuss the legal aspect of caregiving and the end of life, this subject matter is quite important. The bottom line is it is only a matter of time until you and the senior citizen or adult son/daughter sit down to discuss the legal component of caregiving and death. It is important that these discussions zero in on the nuances of estate planning in Philadelphia. Let’s take a quick look at some key areas to highlight during this discussion. 

Estate Planning With a Will 

Though you or your loved one are certainly empowered to create a will in a DIY (do it yourself) manner, doing so has the potential to backfire in a big way. There is no reason to run the risk of your will being invalidated by a judge or challenged by a family member when a Philadelphia estate planning attorney is available to craft a detailed will suited to your nuanced financial picture and desires. 

This is the time to review your assets as well as your financial obligations with your estate planning attorney and loved ones. Determine how you would like your assets to be distributed, sign your will, and you will finally rest easy knowing your hard-earned money, home, vehicle, investments, and other assets are distributed to beneficiaries exactly as desired. Be sure to update your will as major life events unfold to ensure it is completely accurate.

Legal Matters in Caregiving

Plan for the Worst, Hope for the Best

The worst possible scenario is your health declining to the point that you are no longer capable of taking care of yourself and your property. You deserve better than a small room in a nursing home where you might be neglected or abused. Opt for home care services and you will have the essential assistance you need to be provided by truly caring individuals in the comfort of your home. Do your research on Philadelphia home care service providers today and you will enjoy invaluable peace of mind knowing someone will be available to lend vitally important assistance when you need it the most.

Create a Durable Power of Attorney

A durable power of attorney is a document that provides legal powers to a specific individual on behalf of the senior citizen. This legal tool is effective as soon as it is signed. Furthermore, if you become physically disabled or mentally incompetent, the durable power of attorney will still be a valid legal document. This tool grants powers pertaining to the senior’s financial decisions, banking, real estate, government benefits, and other important matters to a family member or friend who can be trusted to make fair and logical decisions.

A Living Trust

Living trusts are legal documents that empower an individual, known as a trustor or grantor, to form a trust and subsequently name a trustee to manage the assets within the trust. This management occurs when the trustor is no longer capable of managing his or her finances. Trustees can be a person or a financial institution.

Legal Matters in Caregiving

Advance Directives

Advance directives are specific instructions pertaining to a senior’s preferences for medical care. Advance directives range from living wills to health care proxies, health care power of attorneys, and do not resuscitate directions. Advance directives should be prepared well ahead of the point at which you or your loved one need home care or nursing home care.

Contact Ameribest Today

Ameribest is proud to provide home care services, occupational therapy, physical therapy, skilled nursing, and additional services that make a meaningful difference for Philadelphia-area patients. If you or a loved one can benefit from home care or other Ameribest services, reach out to us today to learn more about our team. You can reach Ameribest by dialing 215-925-3313. If you prefer to contact us online, fill out our contact form or send an email to us at info@ameribest.org. 

Black History Month – Celebration of Achievements of African Americans in Healthcare

Black History Month is here. This is a time to celebrate the contributions of African Americans to society including the healthcare industry. Though the mainstream media ignored these contributions in decades past, African Americans are finally getting their due attention.

Diversity in Healthcare Matters

Racial diversity in the healthcare industry is important, especially in the context of home care services provided in the melting pot that is Philadelphia. As time progresses, more and more African Americans are entering the healthcare industry and receiving much-deserved recognition for their contributions.

Diverse caregivers with a wide range of perspectives and experiences really do make Philadelphia home care services that much more effective. Let’s take a look at a couple of examples of African Americans’ contributions to the healthcare industry.

Dr. Alexa Irene Canady

Dr. Canady was the first-ever African American female neurosurgeon in the country. She officially started working in this role in 1981. Dr. Canady’s passion for medicine stems back to a summer program centered on the study of genetics specifically created for racial minorities. Dr. Canady’s academic advisers discouraged her from pursuing a career as a neurosurgeon yet she beat the odds, broke through barriers, and became the first female African American neurosurgeon in the history of the United States.

Dr. James McCune Smith

Dr. Smith was the first African American to earn a medical degree. He earned his medical degree way back in 1837 at Scotland’s Glasgow University. Dr. Smith subsequently returned to the United States where he opened the country’s first pharmacy run by an African American.

The Father of the Blood Bank

Dr. Charles Richard Drew often referred to as the father of the blood bank, is worthy of our respect and admiration this February. Dr. Drew’s unique approach for storing blood products relied on the preservation of blood plasma for transfusion. This method has saved thousands of lives. Dr. Drew also worked as a medical scientist and surgeon. In fact, Dr. Drew was the first-ever African American to graduate with a medical doctorate from Columbia University.

Mary Eliza Mahoney

Mahoney was the first African American to become a licensed professional nurse. Mahoney’s nursing degree was awarded in 1879. This was quite the accomplishment as Mahoney was subjected to considerable racism throughout her career. In 1908, she went on to co-found NACGN, an acronym short for the National Association of Colored Graduate Nurses.

Aside from serving as a trailblazer in the nursing field, Mahoney also contributed to the women’s suffrage movement. In fact, Mahoney was one of the first women to register to vote following the 19th Amendment’s ratification in 1920.

Contact AmeriBest Home Care Agency Today

If you or a family member need home care, we are here to help. We provide the industry’s best home health services. Our full range of services is custom-tailored to each patient’s unique needs. Contact us today at 215-925-3313 or by email at info@ameribest.org to learn more about how we can help. You can also reach us by filling out our online contact form.

COVID-19 Vaccines: What You Need to Know

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When it comes to the subject of COVID-19 vaccines, there are plenty of mistruths, and even some bald-faced lies. If you don’t invest your time learning about the vaccines used to combat the coronavirus, you will end up underinformed or misinformed. It is time to separate fact from fiction.

COVID-19 Vaccines Are Worthy of Your Trust

There is a common misconception that vaccines developed to stop the spread of coronavirus are unsafe as they were rushed. Though the global scientific community certainly ramped up their efforts to develop vaccines as quickly as possible, this does not mean the end results are in any way unsafe. The bottom line is the world’s top scientists did not take shortcuts when developing coronavirus vaccines.

Though this is the first time messenger RNA or MRNA for short, is being used for a vaccine the general public will receive, this strategy has been carefully developed across the prior three decades with patient safety squarely in mind. So don’t believe those who insist the rush to create vaccines makes them inherently unsafe.

Those Who Have Already Contracted the Virus Should Still Take the Vaccine

It is quite possible natural immunity to the virus lasts a couple of weeks, a full month, several months, or even longer. However, our top scientists are unsure as to exactly how long natural immunity lasts. Sadly, it appears as though it is becoming increasingly common for people to contract the virus several times over. Medical experts in Philadelphia and beyond insist even those who have contracted the virus should still receive the vaccine to ensure they are fully protected.

AmeriBest Home Care - COVID-19 Vaccines: What You Need to Know

Masks and Social Distancing Must Continue After Receiving the Vaccine

One of the most pervasive myths about the vaccines being dispersed across the world is their implementation eliminates the need to continue social distancing and mask-wearing. The medical community is adamant that everyone who receives the vaccine should continue wearing a mask, practicing social distancing, washing their hands with regularity, and proceeding with caution.

Receiving the initial vaccine shot does not immediately make someone immune to coronavirus. It takes upwards of an entire week to 10 days for the human body to start developing antibodies. These antibodies gradually increase across the weeks to come, meaning masks and social distancing will be the norm in Philadelphia and elsewhere until herd immunity is achieved through the widespread dispersal of the vaccine.

Comprehensive Expert Reviews Indicate the Vaccines Are Safe

Though the Russian vaccine administered to its populace did not undergo a thorough review to ensure safety and efficacy, the vaccines provided to those in the United States have undergone comprehensive analysis. The experts who have studied these vaccines insist they are completely safe. As an example, nearly 44,000 people enrolled in Pfizer’s clinical vaccine trial. The results of the trial were studied in-depth by medical experts who concluded the Pfizer vaccine is safe.

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AmeriBest Home Care Philadelphia Is Here to Help During This Trying Time

Do you have a family member or friend in the greater Philadelphia area who could benefit from home care assistance? AmeriBest Home Care is available to help your loved one or friend enjoy a dignified and comfortable life. Reach out to AmeriBest Home Care today at (215) 925-3313 to learn more about our services and coordinate home care.

2021 Resolutions for Seniors and Their Caregivers

AmeriBest Home Care - 2021 Resolutions for Seniors and Their Caregivers

The new year has finally arrived. The transition to 2021 presents an opportunity to put a nightmarish 2020 in the rearview mirror and focus on a better future. Whether you are a senior citizen or a caregiver, this is the perfect time to establish one or several resolutions. Let’s take a look at some suggestions for 2021 resolutions for the elderly and those who care for them.

Welcome a Helping Hand

There is no shame in accepting assistance from others. Even if you championed self-reliance your entire life, the time has come to let others help you. Think of accepting the assistance of others in the form of home care as gratitude for all your hard work in years prior.

Reach Out to Old Friends

If you have not talked with a friend in years, make 2021 the year of change. Pick up the phone or write a letter to friends you have not spoken to in the past year(s). There is no reason to feel guilty about the prolonged silence as it is easy to lose touch with others. Have a phone conversation, interact through videoconferencing, or handwrite a letter to old friends, and you will feel that much better about yourself. Just as important is the fact that you will have something to look forward to in the new year as you await responses to your letters and rekindle friendships from years past.

Make an Effort to Learn Something New

Just because you are a senior citizen does not mean you have to stop learning. Seize the opportunity to learn something new in 2021. Learning how to use a tech device or starting a new hobby stimulates your brain and makes you a more interesting person. Furthermore, you might make a new friend or two during the learning process.

AmeriBest Home Care - 2021 Resolutions for Seniors and Their Caregivers

Get Your Paperwork in Order

Though no one wants to think about the paperwork such as wills, testaments, and power-of-attorney documents, it is in your interest to get this information in order. Gather and organize all the documents pertaining to your assets, insurance policies, financial information, will, testament, power of attorney, and so on. Once all the documents are created, signed, and filed, you will enjoy a truly invaluable peace of mind.

Philadelphia Caregivers: Provide Care Like Never Before

If you are a caregiver, this is a golden opportunity to provide care to others, especially senior citizens and those with disabilities. Go out of your way to make seniors comfortable, keep a smile on your face, and focus on the positive when interacting with those in need of assistance. Be the bright light that continues shining during these dark times, and you really will provide those around you with much-needed hope for the year ahead.

Patiently Teach Seniors the Ins and Outs of Technology

Teaching the subtleties of today’s computing technology to a senior citizen requires time, effort, and patience. Take your time when communicating how computers, the internet, and other technology is used.

Anticipate the senior you are guiding will make mistakes when learning the ins and outs of these complex tech devices. However, if you remain patient and reinforce the importance of making progress, you will eventually succeed in helping others learn how to use video chat, social media, email, or other digital socialization tools. These tools will help the seniors you care about to socialize with others as prolonged social distancing continues amidst the pandemic.

AmeriBest Home Care - 2021 Resolutions for Seniors and Their Caregivers

AmeriBest Home Care Philadelphia is Here to Help

You have the power to provide your loved one with care in their own home through AmeriBest. Reach out to us today to find out more about our in-home care service. You can contact us by dialing (215) 925-3313 or by emailing info@ameribest.org

All About Caregiving: Numbers, Facts, and Meaning

AmeriBest Home Care - All About Caregiving: Numbers, Facts, and Meaning

You’ve got questions and we’ve got answers!

Individuals with older parents, neighbors, friends, or family may be acting as unpaid caregivers without even knowing it. Read on to find out what caregiving is, what it means to be a caregiver, and what you can do about it.

All About Caregiving

Caregivers are individuals who care for others- friends, family, patients.

Caregiving is what they do.

Caregivers dedicate hours of their time and energy to help care for the medical, emotional, mental, and physical needs of older adults. Caregivers make it their mission to help elderly live their best lives, as happily and healthily as possible.

Caregiving is usually done in a facility or at home, with many seniors now opting for at-home services more and more.

Caregiving At-Home

At-home caregiving services have become increasingly popular over recent years. With at-home caregiving, seniors are able to age comfortably in the familiarity and calmness of their own homes. Whether with a family caregiver or a professional health aide, seniors are able to continue to live their “regular” schedules with just a bit of help.

Caregiving services include:

  • Light housekeeping
  • Meal prep
  • Oral hygiene
  • Showering
  • Dressing
  • Repositioning in bed

More medical at-home services include:

  • Skilled nursing
  • Physical therapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Medial social work

Caregiving Statistics

Although there is great meaning and reward to a job like this, it’s not all roses and rainbows for caregivers. Many caregivers work unpaid, simply helping friends and family. This means doing the work of a full-time job, without the pay. And, 24% of caregivers even care for more than one senior at a time.

Unfortunately, the time restraints and stresses of caregiving can have a real negative effect on health and wellbeing. In fact, 21% of family caregivers view their health as fair to the poor.

Over the past five years, the number of American citizens providing unpaid care for others has increased significantly. In 2015, stats showed that approximately 43.5 million Americans acted as family caregivers. Now, in 2020, the statistics show a mighty 53 million. That’s a 3% increase in just 5 years. Meaning, that around one in five Americans acts as some kind of family caregiver.

What this Means for You

For friends:

If you think one of your friends, neighbors, relatives, or acquaintances might fall under the category of unpaid caregivers in America- offer them support. You may think there’s not much for you do to, but as a friend, you can lend emotional and physical support. And, that support may just make the difference between a happy caregiver and an overwhelmed caregiver.

For seniors:

It can be hard to rely on others for help. But know: your family, friends, and aides are helping because they want to because they deeply care about you. So, say thank you, accept the help, and appreciate the time and effort they are putting into their relationship with you.

For caregivers:

If what you’ve read here rings true- you might be functioning as an unpaid caregiver. Ease the stress, and get paid for the work you’re already doing! Contact us today, with us you can get paid to be a caregiver. You’ll even get paid training, a flexible schedule, benefits, bonuses, and other great employment opportunities!

6 Ways Caregivers Can Safely Celebrate this Holiday Season, 2020

AmeriBest Home Care - Ways Caregivers Can Safely Celebrate this Holiday Season

Working closely with elderly and at-risk patients- caregivers this year have to be extremely cautious with their holiday plans.

However, that doesn’t mean that caregivers can’t still celebrate.

Here are 6 safe ways caregivers of the elderly can have fun and enjoy the holiday season this 2020:

1. Shop Online

Instead of fighting through crowds or waiting on extremely long socially-distanced lines, do your holiday shopping on the internet this year. Stores and brands have put almost all their sales online this season, so you won’t be missing out on savings. Not to mention, it’s easier to shop around for the best price when it’s all just on your computer. Write a cute message, send the gift straight to the recipient, and stay safe the all way through.

2. Participate in Mail-in Gift Exchanges

It’s extremely popular nowadays to do gift exchanges amongst friend groups and larger families. Unfortunately, in-person gift exchanges are not highly recommended this year. But, that doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the fun. Conduct your gift exchange this holiday season through the mail! Send your gift with a secret message, and see if your recipient can guess if it’s from you! Getting gifts in the mail is always something different and exciting.

3. Do a Drive-By

Close physical visits may not be so safe for your senior. However, appropriately distanced visits can be okay. A cute way to do this is with a drive-by! Stay in your car and drive by your senior’s house slowly. You can bring fun signs, balloons, costumes- be as creative as you want! A drive-by visit is a great way to show you care and make your senior feel a part of the holiday celebrations.

4. Make Your Parties Virtual

You may not be able to host a big holiday bash, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still celebrate with a party! Invite your friends and family to a virtual holiday party. Play games, chat, laugh and have a blast in a setting that’s safe for all. Simply be sure to set up the virtual call for your seniors ahead of time, because they may not be able to join the call by themselves.

5. Use Water on Your Envelopes

This tip is more to protect others than yourself. If you’re sending holiday cards, letters, money gifts- don’t lick the envelope closed. Instead, use a soft sponge and a bit of water to wet the envelope seal. Using water instead of saliva will help protect all those who come in contact with your letter. Just be sure not to put too much water on the envelope or it may have trouble staying sealed.

6. Order in a Holiday Dinner

If you’re eating by yourself this year, or you’re eating with others virtually- spice things up with a fancy restaurant dinner. Order your favorite holiday foods and drinks. You can even have the same foods delivered to your senior’s home and enjoy a quaint virtual dinner together.

Contact AmeriBest Home Care to learn more about what we offer. Many people feel good about our services because they make their loved ones happier!