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Types of Nurses

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Nurses always seem to get lumped into one category, even though there are dozens of specialties and certifications which differentiate many of them. Registered nurses have graduated from nursing programs, obtained nursing licenses and must meet minimum practice hours and continue their education to maintain their registration. They perform duties many nurses do, but also may supervise lower level nurses.

A licensed practical nurse (LPN) usually undergoes about two years of training and must pass an exam. They perform basic duties like measuring and recording vital signs, giving injections, laboratory tests, and may help deliver infants. LPNs tend to be generalists and are able to work in many capacities like private offices, hospitals, or clinics. There are opportunities for LPNs to advance to the level of registered nurse.

A nurse practitioner (NP) is a step above an RN in that they have completed advanced coursework. They are qualified to diagnose and order treatments of medical issues, as well as manage the progress. Because of their advanced qualifications, NPs can provide primary healthcare to patients. A few of the classifications include: adult, acute care, gerontological, family, pediatric, neonatal.

A clinical nurse leader is a fairly recent nursing role introduced to help prepare highly skilled nurses to improve the quality of outcomes for patients. This new role is in response to the average of 44,000 to 98,000 estimated deaths of Americans due to medical errors. A CNL is a registered nurse with a masters in the field. They have completed coursework in finance management, pharmacology, leadership, and more. The first CNL exam was held in 2007 and since then thousands of CNLs have been certified.

A nurse midwife is an advanced practice registered nurse specializing in midwifery. They have become primary health care providers for women and help assist in births. They work closely with gynecologists and obstetricians. Some nurse midwives will even attend home births. To ceom a nurse midwife one must hold a master’s or doctorate degree in nursing as well as pass the NCLEX to become a registered nurse, then pass the American Midwifery Certification exam.

Of course this is just a small snippet of the different nursing careers available. There are nurses specialized in almost every facet of healthcare. At Just Like Family Home Care, we work with placing nurses and caregivers in homes of the elderly or those requiring special assistance. If you are interested in becoming a caregiver follow this link to apply! http://justlikefamilyhomecare.com/become-a-caregiver.html


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Websites for Seniors

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If you or an older loved one is computer savvy enough to surf the web, you should be checking out these senior-friendly websites. These sites have great tips geared just for older generations including health information, senior humor, jobs, finances, and more. So turn on that computer, fire up a browser, and start finding what’s available out there!

AARP 

This is probably the most well known group for older Americans around. The American Association of Retired Persons helps the plus 50 crowd with everything from healthcare, retirement planning, finances, and more. They are a nonprofit which advocates for older Americans in the private and public sector. Their website is full of almost anything you can think of relating to seniors.

Senior Match

Don’t give up on love just yet! The new wave of dating is taking place online. It’s making it much easier for single seniors to find each other. It’s available for anyone over 50 whether you are looking for a soulmate or a bridge partner. Make and account today and see who you can find.

Work Force 50  

Just because you’re older, doesn’t mean you have to stop working. Many of us can’t imagine not having meaningful work in our lives, while others dream about the days of sitting and doing nothing. If you are in the former category you will want to look at Work Force 50. This site helps those over 50 find work that fits their skills and experiences. They’ll help you prepare yourself for the new job market!

Elder Treks

If you still love to travel, you’ll want to check out Elder Treks. This company offers senior friendly, small group, exotic travel tours. Travel with others around your age and explore new lands and cultures with experienced guides. Explore Borneo, Brazil, even Antarctica! There’s a trip for everyone here.


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Get Up and Get Moving!

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It is tough growing older. As we age, the body starts to slow down in every way imaginable. Activities we once did with ease a few years ago are now a struggle. But it is important to get up and keep moving. It is vital to your health to spend at least a small part of the day up and about. Whether it’s walking, exercising, going to the store, or walking a pet.

Why do I need to keep moving?

The body functions best when it has a healthy balance of movement and rest. Constant movement will fatigue the body, and rest will help it recover. But too much rest and not enough movement can be detrimental to your health. Serious conditions can occur from resting in bed for too long. Bed sores are a common issue among the elderly who are unable to get up daily. If you are unable to get up on your own, it is important to have a family member or aide assist moving you at least a little each day. A more serious health concern is a pulmonary embolism. These are caused by lack of movement in the legs. A blood clot will form and if not treated soon, can reach the lungs where it becomes dangerous.

We are not trying to scare you! We want to do just the opposite: motivate. We hope the health concerns above will help motivate you to get moving each day. The risk of the issues above does grow with other underlying conditions, but it’s important not to let it get that far.

How do I keep moving?

Although you may not feel ready to get up and move about, it is important you do. Having a nurse or home health aide assist you once or twice a day to get up and walk around can dramatically reduce your risk for health issues. Your muscles will grow more and more weak as you continue to not use them. So it is necessary to move, stretch, and try to exercise if possible. If you are not very comfortable standing to exercise, a good alternative is to try pool exercise.

No matter how you do it, we want you to keep healthy and keep moving!


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Visiting the Doctor

 

The holidays have just passed, and you’ve made a New Year’s resolution to get and stay healthy. The first stop should be to see your doctor. He or she will be able to give you advice as to what to work on, watch out for, and what you can do to prevent certain health problems. For senior citizens it is recommended to visit your general doctor as well as the eye doctor to ensure your eyesight has not changed.

How to Get an Appointment

If you are familiar with the computer, many doctors now give you the ability to make an appointment on their website. Otherwise, call their office and inquire about the earliest chance to come in. You do not want to wait or procrastinate about going to the doctor. Your health is important and you want to take it seriously. Once your appointment day comes, be sure to get there 15 minutes early to ensure you do not miss your time. Usually the doctor is running late, but it is better to be early just in case. Bring a book or crossword puzzle to occupy your time.

What to Ask the Doctor

Be sure to come up with some questions you want to ask your doctor before your appointment. Maybe you are concerned about a specific issue such as lightheadedness upon standing or perhaps you have been feeling anxious. Do not feel afraid or embarrassed to bring up any of these issues. This is the best chance to do so, and the doctor will give you sound advice as to what you should be doing. An appointment like this is also a good chance to get a yearly physical. You can also have certain prescriptions updated if need be.

After the Appointment

If your doctor gave you new prescriptions, you will want to drop them off at the pharmacist on your way home. Write down any specific recommendations the doctor may have given you. Place them in a spot you will see them such as the refrigerator. Then put those recommendations into practice! He or she may have advised you to walk more, focus on your breathing, or any number of things. Track your results and follow up with the doctor. Call them if you have any new questions or concerns.