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How Can Live-in Home Care Help With Osteoporosis?

Live-in home care can help with osteoporosis by:

  • Encouraging a vitamin and mineral-rich diet for healthy, strong bones
  • Organising days out to maintain mobility levels
  • Creating a safe environment to prevent trips or falls
  • Assisting with physical tasks, such as gardening

Osteoporosis is a silent condition that attacks the integrity of bones, making them weak, brittle and liable to fractures or breaks. Women are affected by the condition more frequently than men, but anyone over the age of 60 has the potential to develop osteoporosis.

There are no early warning signs to indicate that someone’s bones are affected, meaning that the first indication that something is wrong usually occurs when an older person experiences a broken or fractured bone.

What causes osteoporosis?

Some people will inherit genes that predispose them to osteoporosis, but there are several other factors that can also affect a person’s likelihood to develop the condition.

Women are more likely than men to develop osteoporosis and tend to experience symptoms at an earlier age, which is likely to be linked to hormonal changes which take place during the menopause - as the levels of estrogen in the body fall, bones tend to become weaker. Women’s bones also tend to be inherently weaker than those of men, making it more likely that they will develop the condition at an earlier age. However, men over the age of 70 can also be prone to developing osteoporosis.

There are several other risk factors which increase a person’s likelihood of developing the condition, including being excessively overweight or underweight, drinking excess amounts of alcohol, smoking, lack of exercise and a poor diet lacking in essential vitamins and minerals.

Osteoporosis prevention and treatment

Once osteoporosis has affected a person’s bones the damage is irreversible, but with careful treatment, the condition can be halted, which is why early detection is so important. If you suspect that your elderly loved one may be susceptible to developing osteoporosis, then you should encourage them to undergo a bone density scan. This is a specialist type of X-ray which detects whether someone’s bones are becoming porous and fragile. Early detection is key to preventing the condition from progressing further, so a bone density scan is an important diagnostic tool.

Quitting smoking and reducing alcohol intake are extremely important if further deterioration of the bones is to be prevented. At the same time, the sufferer’s diet needs to be adjusted to include foods high in Vitamin D and calcium, along with a carefully considered exercise program to maintain current bone density levels.

The importance of live-in care at home

Older people with osteoporosis dread the thought of a fall, which can result in painful fractures and breaks, with the hips, spine, and wrists being particularly vulnerable. The fear of hurting themselves often leads to them adopting a sedentary lifestyle to minimise the risk of falls, but this is counter-productive as it causes increased stiffness, loss of balance and an increased likelihood of losing balance and falling.

A well-trained live-in caregiver will ensure that your loved one is offered a diet rich in the vitamins and minerals required to ensure healthy, strong bones. They will encourage your loved one to engage in beneficial activities such as weight-bearing exercise, to preserve their bone density. They will also organise stimulating days out, which ensures that your loved one gets sufficient fresh air and exercise to maintain their mobility levels.

Dulcie’s Care Story

In this short video, Mary and Colin explain how Dulcie’s live-in Elder carer, Sarah, has become part of the family.

They discuss how live-in care has allowed Dulcie to stay independent in her own home, while making a new friend at the same time.

The benefits of a live-in caregiver

Live-in elderly care is becoming an increasingly popular option, as more and more elderly people look for alternatives to the more traditional residential care home. But it’s not just the preserve of dementia care, or for elderly people who require a high degree of nursing care. Caregivers can also provide important companion care services, offering a helping hand in the home whenever it is needed, whether that means undertaking housework or gardening duties or more complex tasks such as personal care.

One of the principal benefits of choosing a live-in caregiver for your elderly loved one is that it gives you complete peace of mind. You can rest assured that they’re well looked after at every hour of the day and night, by a single dedicated carer.

Even in the best run care homes, it is impossible to maintain staffing levels at a 1:1 ratio, and changing shift patterns mean that the care home is unable to provide the constant levels of attention that a home carer can provide.

In-home care service providers such as Elder go to great lengths to see that carers are carefully matched with care recipients, to ensure that both parties are completely compatible. This ensures that your loved one and their carer will have plenty of common ground, enabling them to form a friendship, which is imperative when they are sharing the same living space.

Your loved one can remain in their much-loved home, surrounded by a lifetime’s possessions and memories. Meanwhile, you can relax in the knowledge that your loved one is safe, happy, secure, and in the capable hands of a compassionate and experienced live-in carer.

Call us for expert live-in care advice
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