During Fall Prevention month, be a watchdog for your senior loved one. Tracy Marcom at Cascade In-Home Care asks: What is a family’s role to check in with their loved ones? Some are hands-off, and may not realize how their love ones are declining. If Mom or Dad don’t live nearby, they can put on a good front because they don’t want to burden their children. Have a service that can come in, even in the beginning, as an in-home care agency before you really need it, is a peace of mind both to your loved one and your family.
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*The following is the output of transcribing from an audio recording. Although the transcription is largely accurate, in some cases it is incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors.
The following is a podcast from a qualified senior care provider, hurt, on the answers for elders radio show. Welcome back to answers for elders radio everyone. I am here again with Tracy more come from cascade in home care and I’m so glad you came back. Tracy. Thanks for having me back. I you know, one of the things this is we’re coming into fall and fall is an interesting time of year for seniors because obviously rains more after sometimes this hasn’t rained for a long time. There’s little things that have gone on in the summer months and things like that, where they’ve been in and out of the House and then all of a sudden it’s like false sets in the pavement, slippery that, you know, different things that happen in colder weather, etc. And so obviously families, if you have a senior loved one, there’s things to think about as you’re as you’re stepping in, and we talked in an earlier segment about, you know, preventing falls, but obviously in the month of October we’re talking about falls. It’s like how what is a family’s role in kind of helping to check in with their loved one. Families play a huge role with their family members and whether they need care or not. Some, I think, adult children are hands off and they don’t realize how mom or dad may be declining and what help is out there. Quite frank you know, quite often we get the frantic call of I was just informed my mom can be discharged, but I have to have this I don’t know where to begin. So I always try to encourage people learn before you need so important. Right. WELLEN IE, education, I think to Tracy, which is when we’re saying checking in. Oftentimes, if if son or daughter don’t live where mom or dad live and they don’t see them every day, mom or dad can sometimes put on a real good front with your your child, saying oh, everything’s fine, because they don’t want to they don’t want to burden their children. Right and so having the ability to have some sort of a service or somebody that comes in even in the beginning. You know, and this is one of the things I’m going to get to in a second, but I’m always a proponent to set up a relationship with an incomb in home care agency before you need it. Absolutely because if you have a little bit of concern. Maybe mom, you don’t need it now. Mom may not need it now, but let’s say mom all of a sudden sprains her ankle one day, or if mom, you know, doesn’t feel good and has a bad flu or something like that, she just needs some help for something. It’s such a piece of mind to both your parent and for you to pick up the phone with a real you know, with an agency that you already have a relationship with. And that’s the thing I think that families are missing that they don’t do it call until there’s a crisis. And yet there’s a lot of ways in which seniors can kind of mask things and I’ve seen it. You know, ultimately, you know, I mean, what is your experience and all that. Well, I agree, and quite often when these adult children get the call, they’re in a panic mode and so they’re really not understanding and digesting everything that has been thrown at them. Their understandably overwhelmed. Where do I start? Where do I begin? How do I do this? So you also have parents who can be kind of sneaky and they may do a check in call every day, but it’s over the phone. It’s not personal. Personally, they’re not seeing mom just burnt another pan. Why did MOM burn a Pan? Because she forgot. So there’s things when an adult child goes in and can check on but seniors don’t want to be parented by their child. No, and that’s one of the huge roadblocks we find. So we always say it’s easy for us to come in and do an assessment because we’re their employee. Well, and we’ve been hired. You bring up such so many good points in this, because how often do we go to our parents house and we don’t check the refrigerator right? You know, if you just open the refrigerator you’re going to find out a lot of things. What’s going on with your loved one? Number One, is there a lot of spoiled food in there? Number two is are they eating? Do they have proper nutrition in their house? The other thing is, you know, to see are they drinking in of water right. All of those things are important. Just the nutrition factor alone is key. Seeing bill’s pilot, that’s another red flag that maybe things aren’t, you know, as kosher is as you think mom or dad might think right. So to start, if you know, if you can start to ingratiate yourself, to understand a little bit more about the daily routine of your loved one, of your senior loved one, understanding how you can assist in that, you know, in that dialog, and then get some services in place. And I I think the first thing, if you have a senior that’s in there s, it’s not too early to establish a good relationship with home care agency, and I think that’s really what’s important. Yeah, and we you know, companionship MMM can be an easy one that we go in and do because maybe the adult children live on the east coast or they’re in the service or they live in another country. Sure, and so they come to visit and that’s when they also might see, oh my gosh, I had no idea dad was living this way. So then it’s again that panic mode. But we come in and can help. I always say that we customize. MMM. Not every case is the same. So once and we provide free assessments, but once an assessment is done we can customize that care plan to fit that individual. MMM. What is it that they need? Do they want somebody just to build a puzzle? Do they need help getting to a doctor’s appointment? Do they need to be taken to physical therapy? Are we just going in to cook meals so they’re actually eating something healthy. Sure, sure. So lots of ways to customize. So we’re talking to Tracy Markham and Tracy is with cascade in home care and you guys service Snow Home Ash, souths gadget and North King County. Is that correct? Yes, that is. That is Nymano Island, Oh, in Kamano. Well, that’s a good thing. That’s a good thing. So and and a little bit about you know, you guys started through basically your independently operated. Is that correct? Tells a little bit about your organization. So John and Linda Sen are the owners. They began John had a passion for helping a doctor be able to keep his parents at home and he said this is my calling, this is what I want to do. So they started. He was there, he was their marketer, their caregiver, the owner operator. Linda was on board. They started in their home and now we have an office and Arlington and caregivers and an office staff and growing, growing some homis county. It’s crazy, isn’t it? So you know, you guys. I’m obviously when we’re talking about checking in, you guys work a probably a lot with the family members and helping to find some balance for a loved one. How do you work with families like overall? Overall, we try to encourage all family participation as much as possible. We also offer a service called the family learning guide, where they can go on and read courses about what maybe going on with their parent and really help educate themselves. We also have the family living the family room, where all of their care is logged in. Every client has a care plan and so, with authorization, the family members can go in and see what was performed, what tasks were completed and what the care is is happening with their family and their loved one. Uh Huh. So they can live in a different state but still be completely in touch and kept in the loop well, and it’s it’s good for family members to all have that kind of a portal because, like you said, it’s one thing if daughter says, you know, mom’s not eating well and it’s like, Oh, you’re just exaggerating. This is what families do right, and so to have a neutral party that goes in and writes like, you know, need to increase protein or not doing this or not doing that, it gives a little bit more attention, I think, overview and a baseline for families actually to come together. Wouldn’t you agree with that? Yes, and a simple thing as water, people don’t realize it’s if you’re so as a drink water, that can have you know, you could be dehydrated and you can have walking issues. Forget the UTI and all of that component, but it people don’t realize. Lack of water headaches, confusion, big, big, yes, and and seniors tend to not drink enough water correct and it’s just because they don’t want to get up, you know, and it just and that’s brings up nice say they don’t want to get up. One of the things I think that you guys will be very good for for a senior is keeping a senior active. It’s let’s go to the store, let’s go places, instead of just sitting home alone, which is not the most healthy situation for a senior, right. Or if they’re at home alone, maybe they’re afraid to get up so often exactly. So in their mind, at safer they just stay seated, they’re watching TV. Well, anybody who has got that stagnant type of daily living, sure you’re going to have problems. Right, right, and then obviously that you know, just as things progress, it’s having that professional person that maybe comes in once or twice a week to start and eventually increases. You guys have more of a professional observation, like you said, assessment of wow, you know, I’m watching mom walk from the living room to the back bathroom and she’s hanging on to this chair and that chair, so there might be some mobility issues. So you guys can kind of catch those things early that maybe before a fall happens or something like that, you can actually get them some physical therapy or occupational therapy to kind of help them with issues before they get too critical. Isn’t that the case? Yeah, we can reach out to the child or if they’re taking him to appointments, it can be mentioned it also so we have to care full time care managers, so they oversee the client and the caregivers that are assigned to that client, and so with the daily checkens you would see any kind of changes, and so those reports can be made that way well. And you know, and as a family member, you know, I took care of my mother. I remember the days of taking care of her when she was still living independently. I wasn’t really that involved at that time, but as she got needed more care and I think I got more involved. But I think one of the things that really was, I think is important for families, and I’m just going to say probably one of the most important, is go with a license, bonded, ensured, local own agency. And you know, just talking about it from a sphere of somebody that made some wrong choices. Earlier we had a family that decided, my mother wanted to invite or hire this this person because she knew her, and it turned out to be a disaster. Yes, and and that’s the thing. The other thing is you don’t even know if your caregiver gets sick with the flu, you don’t have a backup. That’s the other thing. Even in the worst you know the best case scenario. So making sure that you’re with that. That’s a good thing. So, Tracy, how do we reach you? We can be reached by calling, for to five three hundred and six one, zero, zero four four, where you could visit our website at cascade in home carecom thanks so much for getting on the program. Thank you for having me answers for elders radio show with Susan Newman hopes you found this podcast useful in your journey of navigating senior care. Check out more podcast like this to help you find qualified senior care experts and areas of financial, legal, health and wellness and living options. 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Suzanne Newman, host of the Answers for Elders radio show and podcast, proclaims often, “Caring for my mom was the hardest thing I ever have done, but it was also my greatest privilege.” Following a career of over 25 years in sales, media, and marketing management, Suzanne embarked on a 6-year-journey caring for her mother. Her trials and tribulations as a family caregiver inspired an impassioned life mission outside of the corporate world to revolutionize the journey that so many other American families also find themselves on. Answers for Elders provides education, help, and support to families, caregivers, and seniors across the country who are experiencing their own unique journey within the complicated world of Eldercare. Each week, Suzanne is joined by vetted professional experts in over 65 categories including health & wellness, life changes, living options, money, law, and more. Suzanne lives in Edmonds, Washington with her husband, Keith, and their two doodle dogs, Whidbey and Skagit.