Thursday, March 31, 2016

Thanks to our First Responders

I was fortunate this week to be a part of a celebratory breakfast honoring first responders.  The definition of a first responder is someone designated or trained to respond to an emergency.  Let’s think about that for a minute.  There are many different types of people in this world and we all would react differently in the event of an emergency.  Some of us will be frozen in where we stand, some of us will turn away, some of us will ignore it and hope someone else will step up to help.  Then there are the chosen few who are called to run in help those in danger or crisis. 

They run into burning buildings when everyone else is running out.  They assist those trapped in burning or wrecked cars without the thought of the imminent danger to themselves.  They comfort the badly injured and those who are traumatized.  They even play mediator and counselor for domestic issues in families and tend to some of our frail and lonely elderly. It takes a special kind of person to perform these actions under enormous amounts of pressure.

These men and women are members of our fire departments, police departments, sheriff’s departments, and paramedic teams.  They work all hours of the day and night.  They help all kinds of people from the very wealthy, the middle class and the poorest of the poor.  All the while, they think not of themselves but of only helping others.

Maybe it’s a certain type of person who does this job, maybe it’s a calling.  Either way, I am glad they are here.  Take some time to reflect on what these first responders do for our lives.  Even if you have never had the misfortune to need one, you will be glad to know they are there if you do.  If you see a first responder while going about your day, thank them for the service they provide. 
Touching Hearts Senior Care has provided Dementia Training for our first responders.  The training helps them understand the disease, recognize the symptoms and how to respond appropriately.  For more information about Touching Hearts Senior Care, visit our website   

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Facing the Crisis of Our Caregiving Daughters

There are currently 44 million unpaid eldercare providers in the United States according to the U.S. Census Bureau and the majority are women. And yet there are very few support programs in place to support these family caregivers, many of whom are struggling at work and at home. Working daughters often find they need to switch to a less demanding job, take time off, or quit work altogether in order to make time for their caregiving duties. As a result, they suffer loss of wages and risk losing job-related benefits such as health insurance, retirement savings, and Social Security benefits.

This impact to a woman’s career is significant. Caregiving tends to hit women in their mid-40s, just around the time their earning potential starts to wane and dangerously close to the age when they may not be able to reenter the workforce if they leave.

These same women are expected to live well into their mid-80s, and outlive (by about two years) the average man. How will they afford their own care later in life if they can’t save for it at midlife while they are caring for someone else?

There is a national dialogue about the need for affordable childcare and paid parental leave. Elder caregivers are all but absent from the conversation. Sure, paid family leave is starting to be framed as both a childcare and eldercare issue, but many policies only address the working parent, not the worker with parents. New research reveals the majority of Americans feel caring for two elderly adults would be more difficult than caring for two toddlers.

Caring for an aging parent is a much more significant life passage than we give it credit for being. When you are caring for a child, it doesn’t threaten your identity. Because that’s what parents do. But when you are a daughter, you are cared for. You turn to your parents for refuge. When they seek refuge from you it shakes your identity.

Are you an unpaid caregiver struggling with the demands of work life, home life and caring for aging parents?  Touching Hearts Senior Care is here to provide you with information, resources and education to help you manage the stress of being an overworked caregiver.  Visit our website and learn more about what we can do to help.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Your Body on Lack of Sleep


If you regularly miss the 7-hour mark, morning crankiness is the least of your worries.  Her are six good reasons to put away the tablet/iphone/whatever is keeping you up and hit the sheets.

Weight Gain—Sleeping fewer than 6 hours ups obesity risk by 30%.  One study found that women who slept fewer than 5 hours ate 330 more calories the next day.

Poor Immunity—People who sleep fewer than seven hours are nearly 3 times more likely to catch a cold.

Diabetes—Skimping on deep sleep can reduce the body’s sensitivity to insulin, upping your risk of type 2 diabetes.

Brain Fog—Missing out on as few as 1 ½ hours of sleep can reduce daytime alertness by up to 32%.  (But you knew that one already)

Lousy Heart Health—Getting 6 or fewer hours of shut eye over the long term increases your risk of developing or dying of heart disease by 48%.

Blood Pressure Problems—Snoozing just 6 hours a night makes you 20% more likely to develop high blood pressure.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Why You Need a Certified Senior Advisor

Why You Need a Certified Senior Advisor

Here are 5 reasons why you need a Certified Senior Advisor (CSA) to help you and your family:

1.      You are emotional—Making difficult decisions on behalf of a loved one who is ill or unable to speak for themselves can be extremely stressful.  It is no secret that we don’t always make our best decisions when we are stressed, angry or frustrated.  A CSA can assist you and your family by providing  unbiased solutions to whatever situation you are facing.

2.     A Certified Senior Advisor is a local expert—Your local CSA has built many trusting relationships with professionals, programs and services that serve the senior community.  They can give important and reliable referrals for the services you may need.

3.     A CSA can save you time—It can be overwhelming to try and sift through all the companies and services that are available.  A CSA can point you in the right direction by recommending services that are pertinent to your specific needs.

4.     You get personalized assistance—Once your CSA assesses your family’s needs and wants, they can continue to answer your questions, keep in touch with you about your progress and follow up with you to make sure all is going well.

5.     A CSA has comprehensive training and experience—There may be questions you haven’t even considered that are relevant to your situation.  The CSA knows to ask these questions so that you may receive the quality, comprehensive care you deserve.


Gina Germany, owner of Touching Hearts Senior Care, is a Certified Senior Advisor who is available to help you with any senior care questions you may have.  Contact us at 251-445-4204 and she will be happy to help.  You may also visit our website for more info.