Bright Star Care - September 2018


SEPT 2018


Care Is Nothing Without Companionship


M eal prepping, driving to doctor’s appointments, and cleaning are critical aspects of home care, but without companionship, our services become hollow. When you reach a certain age, you need to have something in your life that makes you want to get out of bed in the morning. Most people think of retirement as the ultimate release after decades of hard work and sacrifice. When retirees envision it, the picture resembles something closer to a sandy beach than an institution. But calamities happen, and life doesn’t always go the way we dream it will. Retirement is sometimes spent in a care facility or at home with the assistance of family and friends. I can’t think of anyone who looks at taking care of family as a burden. Most relatives feel empathy for their loved ones, but that doesn’t make the situation any easier. Time spent caring for family means less time for the activities that make you whole. Maybe you’re taking care of your husband, which means you can’t go to your yoga class. Or maybe you’re supporting Mom and Dad, which prevents you from spending time with your own family as much as you need to. Not everyone can be a support structure for a family member, and that’s where we step in.

the individual where they're at in all aspects of life. Most facilities try to be everything to everyone, and while that’s admirable, it's often unrealistic. We want to be alongside clients in their most difficult time and find the best

lifestyle for them. From there, we can work together to discover what ideal care looks like and build a customized plan to help them live a fulfilled and engaged life.

The biggest challenges our caregivers encounter happen when a patient doesn’t feel they are worth a personalized home care plan. Most baby boomers are of the mind that a care plan designed to meet their needs is too much of an investment, and they don’t want to burden others with it. But everyone deserves to have a personalized care solution that addresses their specific needs, especially in retirement.


I remember my grandfather always called himself a “grouchy old fart.” But if you found out what motivated him or presented a discussion on a topic he was passionate about, he’d light up. He loved classic car shows, so I always tried to engage him on his level and talk with him about it. Our caregivers strive to create this same environment of engagement and companionship for our patients every day. It’s not just cooking and cleaning; it’s developing a personalized relationship based on mutuality and genuine care. There is no one care plan that works for everyone. There are as many care plans as there are people who need help. No app, gadget, or formula can ever replace that.

Our caregivers and nurse case managers are focused on collaborating with loved ones to meet

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The food you eat plays a major role in how your body functions on the cellular level. Some foods can wreak havoc on your body, while others canmake you feel great. This is especially true when it comes to that all-too-common ailment, inflammation.

Here are a few examples of foods that lead to inflammation:

Sugar: One of the biggest culprits behind inflammation, sugar is far worse than eating fatty foods. It’s best to skip foods that have added sugar (and this includes sugar of any kind, including corn syrup, fructose, and sucrose). Many manufacturers now label food withmore specific kinds of sugar to hide the fact that they added sugar to their product. Be sure to read labels carefully!

Refined carbs: Basically anythingmade fromwhite flour falls into this category, including bread, pasta, baked goods, and cereals. Research suggests that refined carbs may be a bigger contributing factor than fat in obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. Alcohol: Toomuch alcohol puts a burden on your liver, an organ that helps flush toxins out of the body. You know all of those detox diets? They don’t work. In fact, the only way to detox is to let your liver do its job. When you consume alcohol, it’s harder for the liver to

Success Story

Have You Heard the Good News?

or bladder accidents and until the job is done and done well.

Madeline is one of the best caregivers I've encountered in my years of home health medical work. I am a medical speech pathologist with Home Health Agency and have bumped into many, many caregivers in my work from all different agencies. Madeline stands out. She is empathetic; compassionate but firm when it is in the veteran's best interest; and patient and flexible. I have seen her be creative and innovative to figure out unique ways to solve problems that others have given up on. She has learned how to help [her patient] without injuring their dignity. She attends to them and responds quickly. She has allowed them to make their own choices and has continued to provide the best care that she can. She is emotionally tough, physically fit, and able to do the hard work needed. She has the grit to continue with patience, dignity, and respect after her clients' uncontrolled bowel

She fixes simple and nutritious homemade meals for the VA home health patients with enough to enjoy a second meal, and she wraps them so that he can enjoy them later. I've seen her fix T-bone steak, seasoned baked chicken legs, beets, cooked vegetables, and baked potatoes. It occurred to me that Madeline makes BrightStar Care look awesome. Madeline's care of our mutual patient makes me feel that BrightStar Care hires the best, and I think your agency should consider allowing her to train new caregivers.

Luke 16:10-11— Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted withmuch, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest withmuch. So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches? Jeremiah 17:7— But blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. Ephesians 4:26— In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.


—Elizabeth Stoffel M.S. CCC-SLP.




The Benefits of Ride-Sharing for Older Adults

pump out the toxins in your body. When it can’t do its job properly, the result is inflammation.

Now, for the good stuff. Eat these foods to reduce inflammation:

Blueberries: Many studies call blueberries one of the best fruits you can eat to ease symptoms of inflammation. These blue orbs of goodness are packed with antioxidants, vitamin C, polyphenols, and somuchmore. Eat a handful every day! Salmon: As a source of healthy fats and omega-3 fatty acids, salmon is one of the best protein choices for people with inflammatory conditions, or for those who want to keep inflammation at bay.

According to the Community Transportation Association, 26 million older adults rely on others for transportation. Between the lack of autonomy and the fear of being a burden, this dependency often leads to a decreased quality of life. Most seniors don’t want to call a loved one every time they need a ride, and public transportation is often a hassle at best. Recently, ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft have offered older adults an alternative way to get where they want to go. If you’ve never tried ride-sharing before, here’s how it works. Using an app on your phone, you set a pick-up and drop-off location. In just a matter of minutes, a driver is at your door, ready to travel to your destination. Payment is automatically linked to your phone, so you don’t need to worry about having cash on hand. If you need help setting up the app, reach out to a tech-savvy friend or family member. Odds are they’ve used these services themselves. If you need help getting in and out of the vehicle, Uber even offers a special service called uberASSIST. Drivers in this program have special training and offer door-to-door assistance. Newer companies designed specifically for seniors, like SilverRide and Lift Hero, are expanding into new regions all the time. Ride-sharing offers a number of benefits to older adults who don’t want to rely on a friend or loved one for transportation. Have a medical appointment? Getting there has never been easier. Looking to take a walk somewhere that requires a short drive? You can ride-share there and back. Going out for a bite to eat? With the touch of a button, you’ll soon be on your way. Ride-sharing offers increased independence, security, and efficiency, which far outweighs most other transportation alternatives. You might think of mobile technology as an industry aimed largely at younger generations who live their lives on their phones. Ride-sharing services, however, can offer just as much benefit to you as to those rowdy 20-somethings. If you need a quick, affordable ride, give these apps a shot.

Broccoli: One of the most nutritious and easily accessible vegetables around, the little green buds that cover the tops of broccoli are loaded with anti- inflammatory compounds.


Inspired by Bon Appétit Magazine


1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

• •

12 oz. rigatoni pasta 1 bunch Tuscan kale, rinsed 1 15-oz. can cannellini (white kidney) beans 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided

• •

Juice of 1 lemon

Salt, for pasta water and to taste 2 oz. fresh grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (optional)


1. In a large stock pot, boil 6 quarts of liberally salted water. On another burner, heat a large skillet to medium-low. 2. Add pasta to boiling water and cook for 3 minutes less than the package recommends. 3. While pasta is cooking, add beans, red pepper, and 1 tablespoon of oil to skillet. Cook until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. 4. Add cooked pasta, kale, and 1 cup pasta water to skillet. Toss vigorously as kale cooks, about 4 minutes. 5. Transfer to bowls, top with a squeeze of lemon, sprinkle with cheese or salt, and serve.

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Companionship in Care 1

The Best and Worst Foods for Inflammation Hear What People Are Saying About Us! 2 Beans and Greens Rigatoni The Benefits of Ride-Sharing for Older Adults 3 What Have You Always Wanted to Do? 4

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NEW AND REDISCOVERED PASSIONS IN LATER LIFE Retirement Means Doing What You Have Fun Doing

Aside from financial concerns, the No. 1 question that most impending and recent retirees struggle to answer is how they will fill up all their time. While spending time with family and relaxing are priorities for most folks entering the post-career chapter of their lives, these aren’t enough to fill up the bulk of your newly acquired free time. Cultivating a hobby is a great use of your time at any age, but especially during retirement. As Dick Van Dyke once said, “Tome, retirement means doing what you have fun doing.” Here are three questions to help you discover a hobby that’s right for you. Do you have a dormant passion? Work has a tendency to put our other interests on the back burner. Maybe you painted for pleasure during college but put the canvas away to focus on your career. Perhaps you were once a chess fanatic, and today you find your board gathering dust from lack of use. Now is the perfect time to rediscover those once-beloved activities.

What have you always wanted to do? Discovering new hobbies is just as rewarding as rekindling old ones. Have you ever heard about a pastime and thought, “I’d love to do that, if only I had the time”? Former NFL quarterback Drew Bledsoe opened a winery after retiring from football. While you probably don’t have the financial resources of a professional athlete, there’s nothing stopping you frompursuing a newfound passion at the same velocity as the footballs Bledsoe threw. Is there a cause youwant to support? Volunteer work can be incredibly fulfilling, especially when you have the time and energy to devote to it. Many older adults find that giving back to the community adds meaning and purpose to their lives. The best way to figure out how to donate your time is to think about a cause dear to your heart. From there, find a reputable organization that supports said cause, and see what you can do to help.

Retirement is the perfect opportunity to throw yourself head-first into something you’re passionate about. So what are you waiting for?



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