Tag Archives: Home care

How Caregivers Can Keep Cancer Patients Safe at Home

The Purple Jacket is pleased to welcome back guest writer, Kayla Matthews!

The cancer diagnosis is just the beginning of a long and difficult road for those with the disease. Many treatment plans include rounds of chemotherapy, a method used by doctors to kill cancer cells throughout the body. Along with that comes a slew of side effects, of which they and their caretaker should be made aware.

Indeed, it will be the caretaker’s job to ensure the chemotherapy patient stays safe when they’re not at their treatments. In the hospital, nurses know how to handle their patients carefully and keep everything sanitary. Once the patient goes home, though, it’s up to their caretaker to keep everything clean and safe for both the person fighting cancer and those around them. Here’s what to do if you’re stepping up for someone you know in chemo:

1. Know Chemo’s Side Effects

Depending on the way chemo is administered, a person can experience a range of side effects. Many people feel nauseous, or they vomit after receiving the medication. Of course, this all depends on the dosage and type of chemotherapy a person gets. As a caregiver, you should be aware of the typical side effects you can expect.

Plus, you should know that chemotherapy drugs stay around in a patient’s bodily fluids for up to seven days post-treatment. Everything from vomit to urine to blood will have traces of the drug, and those not on chemotherapy should avoid contact.

2. Clean up Properly

You’ll have to learn how to sanitize your home in the week following a chemotherapy treatment. Once a patient has a spill of any bodily fluid, start by putting on a pair of disposable gloves and wiping it up with a cloth. Double-bag the used material before throwing it into the trashcan to be extra safe. If the spill splashed onto a floor, use soap and water or naturally disinfect it with vinegar to clean up the spot after it has been wiped up with the aforementioned cloth.

If the same spills occur on a bed sheet or pillowcase, you can salvage them after a long wash on either a hot or cold cycle. Make sure the chemo patient puts the lid down before flushing the toilet, and invest in a bucket you’ll use during nauseous moments mid-chemo. Once the treatment’s over, dispose of the bucket.

3. Follow the Treatment Plan

Your chemo patient will have an in-depth treatment plan, which includes the drugs they receive from their doctor directly and the medications they supplement at home. You should make yourself familiar with this plan too, so you know your loved one gets what they need when they need it. Be sure to check the medication’s storage requirements as well so the treatment doesn’t lose any of its efficacy with improper placement. The drugs have to go somewhere safe where kids or pets cannot accidentally ingest them.

4. Remember the Good to Come

No matter how happy-go-lucky a person may be, a cancer diagnosis — and the subsequent treatment — can be draining. As a caregiver, it’s up to you to also be a cheerleader. Remind your loved one what life will be like afterward, especially focusing on the joy that will come with survival. It’s the beginning of a tough road, but it’s not the end, and you should remind them of this as often as possible.

As you can see, the job of a caregiver is equal parts medical and emotional. Yes, you have to ensure they take their medicine on time and keep their living quarters sanitary, but you also have to serve as a support system in one of life’s most trying times. However, if you signed up for the role, it means you have the heart to do it — and now, you know the practical requirements of the job, too.

Kayla Matthews:  Kaylaematthews@gmail.com

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Tips on Effectively Balancing your Professional Life and Caring for Your Aging Parents

Today I am pleased to welcome a guest blogger on ‘The Purple Jacket’ , Fiona Jameson.

Tips on Effectively Balancing your Professional Life and Caring for Your Aging Parents

There comes a time in life when you will need to help care for your aging parents. While many aging people prefer to maintain their independence as much as possible, most will welcome the help. It will be hard with your busy professional life and family of your own, but with a little help and a few tips the balancing act will be easier to accomplish. When the aid that your aging parents needs is more than you are able to provide, respite care may be the best answer.

blog1Move your Parents into your Home

In some cases, it is easier to help your parents and maintain their independence as much as possible is to move them in with you. This may mean purchasing a new house, making a few renovations or updating a few things to make it comfortable for them. When aging parents live with their children and their families, someone is around a good amount of the time to help them with their needs.

Schedule Meal Deliveries

Several meal delivery services and private chefs can be accessed to ensure that your aging parents eat balanced meals. If you do not have a work schedule that coincides with their eating schedule, having meals delivered to them daily, or even weekly, will provide them with that nutrition. All they will have to do is warm up the items in the microwave or in the oven and it is ready to eat.

blog2Consider Assisted Living Situations

In order to help your parents maintain a good amount of their independence, ask them to consider moving to an assisted living community. Here they will have access to medical staff in case of an emergency and can get assistance with cleaning, laundry and other items if needed. These communities are safe areas with many having security cameras and entrance gates. Within these communities are other aging persons that your parents can bond with.

Visiting your parents can be done anytime you’d like, since the living areas are like them having an apartment of their own. It is one of the easier ways to manage their care and be able to help them with things like getting to doctor’s appointments, grocery shopping and picking up medication. It will be less stressful for you since worrying about their well-being will be less of a burden.

Look into Hiring a Caregiver

If you have spoken with your parents and they refuse to move into your home or consider an assisted living situation, offer to help find a caregiver that can come daily, or a few times per week. This can be someone to come in and clean, cook meals or just provide companionship. A caregiver can also drive your parents to appointments, activities, entertainment, grocery shopping and anywhere else they need or want to go. It helps both you and your parents. The weekends, of course, should be the time when you take time away from work to spend with your parents helping them with maintenance, talking and whatever else they might want to do.

blog3Spend Weekends Helping Them

When your professional life doesn’t leave time for you to visit and help your aging parents as much as you’d like, be sure to set time aside on the weekends for them. If they are still living in their own home, cut the grass in the summer months and help maintain flower beds, vegetable gardens and their home. While it may seem like having a second job, a few hours a day on the weekends makes all the difference in the world. They spent their lives raising you and your siblings, it’s now the job of the children to help take care of them. It shows a great appreciation for your parents and can add to the longevity of their lives.

 Consider Respite Care

If in-home care and assisted living situations are absolutely out of the question, a respite situation may be needed. As parents age, they can become ill, frail and unable to take care of themselves. This may also be something that is far beyond what you are able to provide. A respite situation ensures that your parents will be well cared for. They will have exercise, balanced meals, companionship and their medications distributed at specific times daily. Many respite facilities also have activities, crafts and social events for residents to partake in. This helps keep them feeling like there is a purpose to fight and stay stubborn.

blog4Get Other Family Members Involved

Even with a busy professional life, there are other members in the family that can help care for your aging parents. Your children can be taken to visit for a few hours during the week to share what is going on in school and listen to stories told by your parents. Siblings and spouses can also do their part to help out by taking turns going to help out for a little bit each day after their days are done. When some of the tasks are taken off of your shoulders, balancing your career and caring for your parents is absolutely possible.

 Parental care is something that every family has to face at some point. It is up to the members of the family to work out a schedule to help them. You can balance your career and take on all of the responsibilities yourself if you wish. Use the tips above to make balancing your professional life and caring for your parents easier.

  •  Fiona Jameson is a Psychology major. Since her college, she has actively taken part in a lot of social service programs which further enhanced her urge to help out the elderly and disabled. Over the years, she has closely worked as a consultant with several philanthropic organizations, guiding those who need her help.


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That’s What Caregivers Do!

Presidential Proclamation — November is National Family Caregivers Month!

 I am proud to be one of the over 60 million Caregivers in the United States today.  Being a Caregiver can be, and often is challenging… But also so very  rewarding.  I believe that to be entrusted with the care of another human being is one of the greatest honors that can be bestowed on another person.  Those long sleepless nights, those challenging trips to the doctor and hospitals, those times when you have to intercede, educated and advocate come full circle when your Caree looks at you and  simply says…”Thank You for what you do for me.”  

I am also mindful of those family Caregivers who are never thanked, never appreciated and overworked.  If it means anything to you, from one Caregiver to another, I offer my thanks and appreciation to you because… That’s what Caregivers do! 

Caregiving is not a role that is often chosen and Caregiving is not for everyone.  Caregivers come in many different shapes, sizes, philosophies and cultures:  Caregiving and Caregivers are diverse. While our Caregiving  journeys might be different, Caregivers have this innate ability to understand each other,  to care for each other, to be there for each other, because…  That’s What Caregivers do!

Through the wonders of the internet, my Caregiving journey has been enriched by the countless number of people I have met along the way.  Each one of you have inspired me, supported me and have been there for me because… That’s what Caregivers do! 

A special ‘thank you’ to Author, Caregiving Coach, Speaker and owner at Caregiving.com Denise Brown and my extended family at  Caregiving.com  for your support. You opened up your ‘home’ to us and made us feel welcome from the start because…  That’s what Caregivers do!

We know that our current Caregiving journey is going to be filled with a few bumps and bruises along the way; Cancer has a way of doing that.  Yet we know those bumps and bruises will be a tad softer because of our extended Caregiving family we’ve met along the way because…That’s what Caregivers do!.  


Caregivers: Thank You for all you do from Bernard Richard Schiffer…’The Little One’

To all Caregivers, I share this simple smile from a very special fellow whose courage is unbounded, as a way of thanking you for all that you do, because…That’s what Caregivers do! 


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Caregivers: Learn to Unfrazzle!



Wednesday September 4th, at 8:00 pm (EST) I welcome Rajiv Mehta, creator and developer of ‘Unfrazzle’ to ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’ on ‘Blog Talk Radio. You can listen to the show live by simply clicking here! 

‘Unfazzle’ is a Caregivers  App which helps Caregivers not only sort out their Caregiving days, this App allows Caregivers to share information with those who are on the Caregiving team.


Raj Metha

Caregivers you are going to want to Unfrazzle!

 OH and did I mention that Unfrazzle is a FREE APP! 

Click here to listen to our show live! 

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Creating A Caregiving Team with Lisa Kendall on ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’

On Tuesday July 9th at 1:00 pm (EST) I am pleased to welcome from Crossroads Counseling and The Eden Alternative, Lisa Kendall, LCSW-R, CSW-G to ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’ on Blog Talk Radio.  To listen to our show live, simply click here! 

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Lisa Kendall

Lisa Kendall possesses over 30 years of experience working specializing in the areas of aging, senior care, grief and loss.  Lisa’s blog, “Reflections from the Crossroads” promotes change in how society views aging while promoting  self-care for all members of the care partner team. 


Creating a Caregiving team is essential to the health and well-being of not only your Caree, but for the Caregiver as well.   But how do we go about selecting people to be on your Caregiving team?  Our conversation on Tuesday will surround why it is important to have a Care Team and how we as Caregivers can create one.  Through our conversation with Lisa, we will all learn how to Be A Healthy Caregiver!’ 

Visit Lisa’s website by clicking here!

Visit Lisa on Facebook by clicking here!

To listen to our show live click here! 

Now On Tuesday’s and Thursday’s!

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Can’t listen live…NO Worries!!! All our episodes of ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’ are archived for your listening convenience by clicking here! 


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Caregivers: Sometimes You Just Have To Ask!


Tuesday on ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’,  I had the pleasure to visit with author and Caregiving expert, Dr. Amy D’Aprix.  During our conversation, Dr. Amy recanted a story about a taxi driver who was able to help her out with a simple request for an envelope.  Not knowing why she even asked the taxi driver for an envelope, she in turned learned a great lesson from the taxi driver when he said to her, “when you need something in life, you need to ASK, ASK, ASK!”

David AllenAs Caregivers, we can fall into the trap thinking that “we can do it all”, yet when it is time for a break or time for  respite, sometimes we don’t know how to ask for help.  Having the ability to ask for help is one of the first ways to help  ease Caregiver stress.

The main Caregiver in a family is usually the lead when it relates to disseminating information to family, friends and neighbors. Sometimes those family, friends and neighbors are just a conversation away from being in a position to help.  Help is not always assumed, and sometimes in order to get what you want, you just have to ASK, ASK, ASK!”

I am asking  you today is to simply listen to an archived version of Tuesday’s show, because I am confident that you’ll find some soothing words of wisdom from Dr. Amy because we all want to ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’

To listen to an archived version of our show, simply click here! 


Dr. Amy D'Aprix

Dr. Amy D’Aprix

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Dr. Amy D’Aprix Featured On ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’



On Tuesday, July 2nd at 1:00 pm (est) I am pleased to welcome Dr. Amy D’Aprix to ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’ on Blog Talk Radio! To listen to our show live, simply click here!


Dr. Amy D'Aprix

Dr. D’Aprix is an aging, retirement and Caregiving expert and the developer of the free Home Instead Senior Care Alzheimer’s Care Training Program for family Caregivers. An accomplished author and educator, Dr. D’Aprix passion for Caregiving is driven both from her professional background, as well as her own 10 years of Caregiving experience for her parents.

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Our conversation on Tuesday will not only focus on Dr. D’Aprix excellent work, we’ll chat about how Caregivers can take better care of themselves while caring for a chronically ill, aged or disabled senior. Through our conversation with Dr. D’Aprix, we will all learn how to ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver!’


To listen to our show live, simply click here!

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Can’t listen live…NO WORRIES! All of our episodes of ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’ are archived for your listening convenience by clicking here!



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‘Granny Suites’…How Cool Is That!



Tuesday on ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’, I had the pleasure to visit with Hank and Henry Moseley from Home Care Suites.   To listen to our show, simply click here!


A recent PEWS survey indicated that almost half of the adults in the United States feel that at some time in their life, they will be caring for a parent or an adult member of their family.  When you take into consideration that there are over 44 million working family caregivers in the country, it goes without saying that we spend quite a bit of time caring!

Home Care Suites offers a unique option for Senior living by building custom tailored ‘Granny’ Suites ( I just love that description) right in the convenience of your own back yard.  The homes are cost and energy-efficient, while offering a technology package which provides safety and security for the entire family.

What attracted me to Home Care Suites was not only their quality product, or their excellent reputation, it was their ability to take a concept and make it work that is practical for everyone in a family!  Home Care Suites provides an excellent option for senior living which allows for autonomy, safety and cost efficiency.    And to top that off, you get the  personal attention from a Father/Son team that is not only experienced and knowledgeable, they understand what it means to ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver!’

Be sure to visit Home Care Suites on-line and check out all the wonderful options they offer in Senior living by simply clicking here! 

Listen to:

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 Every Tuesday on Blog Talk Radio! 

To access all our episodes, simply click here! 


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Home Care Suites Featured on ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’


On Tuesday  June 25 at 1:00 pm (est) I am pleased to welcome Henry and Hank Moseley from Home Care Suites  to my show,  Be A Healthy Caregiver’ on Blog Talk Radio. To listen to our show live, simply click here! 


Home Care Suites offer a unique and affordable solutions when it comes to senior housing. The Home Care Suite or ‘granny flat’ is a custom assembled structure placed on a caretaker’s home property.  Home Care Suites units are built for senior living with a focus on accessibility.  As an option to an expensive retirement home or living alone,  Home Care Suites keep families close and independent, while providing a financial solution for quality senior living!  Through our conversation with Henry and Hank, we will all learn how to ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’


Henry Moseley, Jr


Henry Moseley, III

To visit Home Care Suites website, simply click here! 

To listen to our show live on Tuesday, simply click here!

Can’t listen live to our show on Tuesday…NO Worries!!! All our shows are archived for your listening convenience by simply clicking here! 

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Tuesday on ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver:’ Caring Is Not Enough

be-healthyOn Tuesday, April 30th at 1:00 pm (est) we welcome author Terry Ann Black, RN to our ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver show on Blog Talk Radio.  To access the show live on Tuesday, simply click here!


Terry Ann Black, RN

As a  registered nurse for 47 years, Terry has  worked with many people in times of crisis. However her life changing experience came when Terry’s father-in-law died in an auto accident, leaving  her family with limited knowledge on where to find all his important documents.

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Now in its 5th edition, Terry’s book Caring Is Not Enough provides her readers with a clear and concise information on how individuals and families can get their affairs in order. Through our conversation on Tuesday, Terry will demonstrate to us how we can ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’

Visit Terry’s  website and buy her book by simply click here! 

Visit Terry’s Blog by simply clicking here! 

To listen to Tuesday’s show live, simply click here! 

Cannot listen live on Tuesday...NO Worries!!!  

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Our shows are archived for your listening convenience.  You can access all our episodes of ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver by simply clicking here!


Always remember… “It’s Our Hope That Lets Us Withstand ProblemsIt’s Our Dreams That Let’s Us Find solutions! 

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