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Tasty Summer Drinks

Summer isn’t complete without a refreshing drink on a hot day. And nothing tastes better than a cup of something homemade. Maybe it’s lemonade or sweet tea, or something a little stronger. Take a look at these easy to make drink recipes to get you in the summer spirit (get it summer spirit?).

Easy Peach Tea
Passion For Savings has a great homemade tea recipe using delicious peaches, water sugar, and tea bags. Check out there site to see exactly how to make this sweet drink.

Orange Lemon Shake Ups
This tasty summer beverage comes from Love Grows Wild. Adding a twist of orange to your lemonade never taste so good.

Frozen Coconut Limeade
We found this frozen summer sip on Dessert Now Dinner Later (great name huh?). This drink will certainly keep you cool and refreshed.

Cucumber & Melon White Sangria
This adults- only drink is great for dinner outside, or spending time with friends. This comes to us from Eating Well.


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Helping Seniors Prepare for Hurricane Season

Hurricane season is already upon us, as you saw with Hurricane Arthur hitting the Atlantic coast earlier this month. Being in Southwest Florida, it is essential that we make sure to plan ahead and have supplies ready just in case another storm comes our way. What would you do without electricity, water or a way to communicate? While hurricanes affect each and every one of us, senior citizens in particular can be more vulnerable and may need extra help in planning. Many Seniors are in good health, but aren’t quite as agile as they once were. Some have hearing or vision problems, others use a cane or wheelchair. Whatever the limitation, we at Just Like Family Home Care want to make sure our all of our clients are prepared. Whether it’s ensuring they have a full supply of their medications or making sure their supply bag is not too heavy, it’s important to get all the essentials squared away ahead of time.

THE KIT

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What are some of the first things you think of when putting together a supply kit? Of course food, water, and medicine. But, how much do all of these items weigh? It is best to put these supplies and other necessities in a bag with wheels for added convenience. Ensure the bag has copies of personal documents, contact info cards, and even a cell phone with an extra battery or charger in case.  This bag can be used as a “go” bag in case you or your family member must evacuate.
Water: a rule of thumb for water is one gallon per person, per day, with a two week supply for home and a three day supply for evacuation.

Food: The same rule of thumb for water goes for food, but make sure your food doesn’t require cooking.

Prescription Medication: You should have, at least, a two week supply of all prescription medications along with a list that includes dosage and any allergies. If you or your loved one use any special medical aids like oxygen, catheters, or electric wheelchairs, you need to be sure to have extra supplies for each.

Tools, Flashlights & Cash: You never know when the power will go out so it’s always a good idea to have a multi-purpose tool, flashlight with extra batteries, and manual can opener readily available. We recommend that Seniors have a whistle that can be used to call for help in case of an emergency.

Cash: Consider having cash stashed away because the loss of power will disable ATMs.

Important Papers: put all important papers in a waterproof container. These documents include, but are not limited to your driver’s license, special medical information, medical insurance and Medicare cards, insurance policies, family and physician contact numbers and a list of the style and serial numbers of any medical devices, i.e. pacemaker.

MAKE A PLAN

Be sure to discuss evacuations plans with your family ahead of time. In case you cannot return home, plan an evacuation route and a meeting place. This is especially crucial if you or your loved one uses a wheelchair or is bed ridden. Make sure you assign an out-of-town contact person, because after a natural disaster, it is often easier to make a long-distance phone call, than a local call.

Seniors and those who are disabled will typically need special assistance in order to evacuate. Many cities offer evacuation shelters and it is a good idea to determine your families criteria for when to evacuate ahead of time, so you’re not making this important decision in the middle of the hurricane. You will want to have this conversation as soon as possible, to ensure proper transportation and accommodations. This may mean going to a shelter, hotel, or relative’s home out of town.

Just Like Family Home Care Checklist:

1. _____ Important medical, family contact and insurance information, safe and secure

2. _____ Water ( Two week supply at home, three day supply if evacuating |1 gallon per person, per day)

3. _____ Food (2-week supply of nonperishable food at home, 3-day supply if evacuating)

4. _____ Non-electric can-opener

5. _____ Battery powered radio

6. _____ Flashlights

7. _____ Extra batteries

8. _____ Two-week supply of prescription medication & list that includes dosages and allergies

9. _____ Mosquito repellant

10. _____ First Aid Kit

11. _____ Water purification kit (tablets, plain chlorine and iodine)

12. _____ Pre-moistened towelettes

13. _____ Antibacterial wipes and/or hand sanitizer

14. _____ Walker, wheelchair, and other medical equipment (talk to medical equipment company prior to determine needs for battery or electric powered devices, register with the power company if electricity required for Oxygen or special needs)

If you evacuate, also take:

15. _____ Bedding

16. _____ Extra clothing and shoes

17. _____ Eyeglasses

18. _____ Folding chair or cot

19. _____ Extra hearing aid batteries

20. _____ Walker, wheelchair, and other medical equipment

21. _____ Important papers (in a waterproof container)

a. _____Driver’s license

b. _____ Special medical information

c. _____ Medical insurance and Medicare cards

d. _____ Insurance policies

e. _____ Family and physician contact numbers

f. _____ List of style and serial numbers of medical devices, i.e. pacemaker

Precious commodities before and after a storm:

22. _____ Cash, Ice, Charcoal, Wooden Matches, Grill


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Staying Cool

It’s the dog days of summer, especially here in Florida.  We’ve gone over how to keep yourself safe in a hurricane if you’re elderly or infirm, so we thought it would be a good time to go over how to stay safe in the heat.  What to look out for, what to do, and what preventative measures you can take, straight from the Centers for Disease Control!

Elderly people (that is, people aged 65 years and older) are more prone to heat stress than younger people for several reasons:

  • Elderly people do not adjust as well as young people to sudden changes in temperature.
  • They are more likely to have a chronic medical condition that changes normal body responses to heat.
  • They are more likely to take prescription medicines that impair the body’s ability to regulate its temperature or that inhibit perspiration.

Heat Stroke

Heat stroke is the most serious heat-related illness. It occurs when the body becomes unable to control its temperature: the body’s temperature rises rapidly, the body loses its ability to sweat, and it is unable to cool down. Body temperatures rise to 106°F or higher within 10 to 15 minutes. Heat stroke can cause death or permanent disability if emergency treatment is not provided.

Signs and Symptoms of Heat Stroke

Warning signs vary but may include the following:

  • An extremely high body temperature (above 103°F)
  • Red, hot, and dry skin (no sweating)
  • Rapid, strong pulse
  • Throbbing headache
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea

Heat Exhaustion

Heat exhaustion is a milder form of heat-related illness that can develop after several days of exposure to high temperatures and inadequate or unbalanced replacement of fluids.

Signs and Symptoms of Heat Exhaustion

Warning signs vary but may include the following:

  • Heavy sweating
  • Paleness
  • Muscle Cramps
  • Tiredness
  • Weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Fainting
  • Skin: may be cool and moist
  • Pulse rate: fast and weak
  • Breathing: fast and shallow

What You Can Do to Protect Yourself

You can follow these prevention tips to protect yourself from heat-related stress:

  • Drink cool, nonalcoholic beverages. (If your doctor generally limits the amount of fluid you drink or has you on water pills, ask him how much you should drink when the weather is hot. Also, avoid extremely cold liquids because they can cause cramps.)
  • Rest.
  • Take a cool shower, bath, or sponge bath.
  • If possible, seek an air-conditioned environment. (If you don’t have air conditioning, consider visiting an air-conditioned shopping mall or public library to cool off.)
  • Wear lightweight clothing.
  • If possible, remain indoors in the heat of the day.
  • Do not engage in strenuous activities.

What You Can Do to Help Protect Elderly Relatives and Neighbors

If you have elderly relatives or neighbors, you can help them protect themselves from heat-related stress:

  • Visit older adults at risk at least twice a day and watch them for signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke.
  • Encourage them to increase their fluid intake by drinking cool, nonalcoholic beverages regardless of their activity level.
    Warning: If their doctor generally limits the amount of fluid they drink or they are on water pills, they will need to ask their doctor how much they should drink while the weather is hot.
  • Take them to air-conditioned locations if they have transportation problems.

What You Can Do for Someone With Heat Stress

If you see any signs of severe heat stress, you may be dealing with a life-threatening emergency. Have someone call for immediate medical assistance while you begin cooling the affected person. Do the following:

  • Get the person to a shady area.
  • Cool the person rapidly, using whatever methods you can. For example, immerse the person in a tub of cool water; place the person in a cool shower; spray the person with cool water from a garden hose; sponge the person with cool water; or if the humidity is low, wrap the person in a cool, wet sheet and fan him or her vigorously.
  • Monitor body temperature and continue cooling efforts until the body temperature drops to 101°–102°F
  • If emergency medical personnel are delayed, call the hospital emergency room for further instructions.
  • Do not give the person alcohol to drink.
  • Get medical assistance as soon as possible.