Home – What Does It Mean To You? (Video)

Home isn’t just a place – it evokes years of feelings and memories. What does home mean to you?

It is cliché but maybe the sooner we can all realize that we are all in this together is the day we can begin to understand life and the course that it really takes. But there is always one thing that we will all have in common… and that is we all want to feel safe and comfortable in our homes. Our shelter. Our safe place. Our love. View our video below and we hope you enjoy it. And if you do, please share with your friends, family and social media.

Stay home. Stay healthy. We are all in this together.

‘Where we love is home – home that our feet may leave, but not our hearts.’ ~ Oliver Wendell Holmes

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4 Ways to Lower Your Risk of Alzheimer’s Disease

LovingHomeCareServices-4-Ways-To-Lower-Your-Risk-of-Alzheimers-DiseaseNext to a diagnosis of cancer, perhaps the most feared diagnosis many people carry in the back of their minds is Alzheimer’s Disease. You may also know it as Alzheimer’s Dementia.

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, Alzheimer’s Disease affects 5.8 million Americans as of 2019.  This is across all age groups.  Approximately 200,000 are under the age of 65 with what is labelled as Early Onset Alzheimer’s disease.  From the original number of 5.8 million diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, an astounding 81% of them are aged 75 and up.

In comparison, people ages 65-74 only make up about 3% of the statistics.  The population of Americans reaching age 75 will increase from 55 million to 88 million by 2050. That makes for staggering numbers and a reasonable concern for your elder years.  However, some of the markers begin to show themselves in the brain as much as 20 years before diagnosis. Thus, taking steps to decrease your risk only makes sense.  A neurologist explains four ways to lower your risk of Alzheimer’s Disease.


Alzheimer’s has become almost synonymous with ageing that people may forget that it is not a normal part of ageing. Also, dementia is not the same as Alzheimer’s.  Dementia is a symptom of Alzheimer’s, or it can stand alone as its disease.

Alzheimer’s is a degenerative brain disease. Furthermore, it begins its battle on your brain upwards of 20 years or more before you have significant symptoms.  During that time, our brain can compensate for the gradual deterioration until the damage has become severe enough that symptoms such as lack of memory or language difficulties occur.


Our brain transfers information via neurons and branches of the neurons with synapses used to connect them all together.  The data is like a spark of static electricity from one neuron to another neuron.  This process is what allows for our memory, thoughts, sensations, skills, emotions, and motion.   With Alzheimer’s disease, two proteins attach themselves to the neurons.

Beta-amyloid plaques attach to the outside of the neurons.  They are believed to cause cell death by preventing the neurons from being able to communicate with each other at the synapses.

The second protein is called tau tangles, and it attaches to the inside of the neurons. It is believed to essentially create the starvation of the neurons by blocking the ability of nutrients and other molecules to get in.

As the beta-amyloid plaques increase to such a high level, they push the tau tangles to spread throughout the brain.  This then triggers the microglia in the brain.  Microglia are designed to rid the body of toxins and are the janitors of the dead cells.  An abundance of the two proteins become viewed as a toxin, creating inflammation as a response from the microglia attempting to decrease their numbers.  As the microglia is overwhelmed, more brain cells die off, and the brain begins to atrophy.  At the same time, the brain is unable to use glucose, which is its primary energy source, furthering the damage.

This decline continues as the plaques and tangles spread to include the various function of the brain.  It can affect the person’s personality, create confusion, noticeable memory loss, including time and place, depression, and eventually, in the final stages, semi-automated body functions begin to fail.


The symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease can be similar to normal ageing mental decline except to a much higher degree.  It is not unusual for anyone to forget where they placed something.  The difference is that an average person will be able to retrace their steps that day and find the lost item.  An Alzheimer’s patient will have no recollection of their day at all.  Here are some of the other symptoms of Alzheimer’s:


An individual with Alzheimer’s will have difficulty remembering new information, dates, events, or needing a constant repeat of other information that typically they were capable of handling.  You may find them write themselves notes. Or, they might need friends and family to remind them about normal daily things.


Problem-solving, working within a plan, or ability to work with numbers decrease. Suddenly they have problems paying bills, doing simple math, counting money, or figuring out how to double a recipe.


They begin to lose track of seasons, dates, or how much time has passed.  For example, they may go for a walk and not realize how much time has passed. Nor will they recall why they are where they are.  In fact, they may not even recognize where they are and become lost altogether.


They may have difficulty reading, identifying colours, and judging depth or distance.


They may be unable to find the right words often or substitute other phrases to represent an everyday item.  They may start a conversation and then forget what they were saying or stop talking as if they didn’t remember they were speaking.


More susceptible to buying sprees or telemarketers. They become forgetful about bathing, brushing, and flossing, or other self-care habits.


As they become more aware of their deficiencies, they begin to withdraw from family and friends.  They are no longer able to follow conversations, TV shows, and do their hobbies.


As their world becomes more of a scary place, they become overly suspicious, hostile, angry, and confused.


study recently published in “Alzheimer’s and Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association.” provides hope towards the potential improvement of brain functions and a decrease in Alzheimer’s symptoms within 18 months of following a specified plan.  This plan involves diet, exercise, and doing cognitive exercises.

The study was organized and written by Dr. Robert Issacson, a founder of the Alzheimer’s Prevention Clinic at NewYork-Presbyterian and Weill Cornell Medical Center. He and his research staff conducted a study by asking clients of his to volunteer.   They had 154 patients between the ages of 25-86 volunteer.

These patients were non-symptomatic but had a history of Alzheimer’s in their family. And, they already showed a decline in cognitive function on specific tests but not any clinical symptoms of dementia or Alzheimer’s.  Thirty-five of the volunteers displayed the beginning stages of Alzheimer’s or Mild Cognitive impairment.  MCI means they show strong signs of cognitive difficulties that have not reached a level of daily impairment.

All of the volunteers underwent a battery of family health questions,  medical, and cognitive testing to ascertain a total healthy picture as well as determine if they were displaying cognitive impairment leaning toward Alzheimer’s.  Those who did display cognitive impairment, in some degree, underwent further evaluations.

Researchers gave each of the members a personalized, specialized list of 21 activities to follow.  An emphasis was placed on nutrition and physical activity, yet that portion of the plan was designed specifically for each individual.  Some of the details on the list that the group monitored was:


The results were impressive.  The individuals diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment who followed at least 12 of the 21 activities demonstrated an improvement in memory and thinking skills 18 months later.

For those with MCI who did not follow at least 60% or 12 of the 21 activities, they showed no improvement and declined in memory and thinking.

The individuals who had a family predisposition to Alzheimer’s but were not displaying any symptoms also had marked improvement regardless if they did 60% or less of the list.

The medical field has already been doing studies to attempt to ascertain the role nutrient or diet and exercise may play on Alzheimer’s, but this is the first study to personalize the diet and exercise per the patient’s health needs or difficulties.   The other two factors which this study ruled as being critical toward the delay of Alzheimer’s are sleep and learning something new.

This study may not be a cure, but it does point to a method to decrease the cognitive decline during those 20 plus years before the sharp onset of symptoms.

Visit our Alzheimer’s Page to learn more about our Alzheimer’s Care Services.

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Original Content: https://www.powerofpositivity.com/alzheimers-disease-neurologist-explains-lowering-risk/

Cannabis For Seniors – What Does It Mean To You?

LovingHomeCareServices-Cannabis-For-SeniorsIt may surprise you to know that the fastest-growing demographic for medical cannabis use is for seniors. Since 2014, according to a publication by Schauer et al., in the American Journal Preventative Medicine in 2016, there has been about a 700% growth with adults over the age of 50 utilizing medical cannabis.

Cannabis has been legal for medical use in Canada since 2001 under different regulations.  Fast forward to 2017 and in a monumental moment on October 17th cannabis became federally legal for recreational consumption.  The history behind cannabis starts much earlier than most know of as far as about 5,000 years back it was being used as a medicine.  Commonly used in the 1800s and early 1900s, however, under the first federal marijuana law of 1937 in the United States the substance was prohibited and effectively banned the use of cannabis.

What Does It Do?

There are studies that show it can be effective to manage pain and spasticity along with people finding benefit to assist with sleep issues, appetite stimulation and to combat nausea (often from chemotherapy).

You have choices when using medical cannabis, there are products with THC (delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol) and products with CBD (cannabidiol).  Now you are wondering what the difference is between those two. We explain…


THCCannabinoid receptors are concentrated in certain areas of the brain associated with thinking, memory, pleasure, coordination and time perception. THC attaches to these receptors and activates them which can lead to elevated mood, relaxation, increased appetite, it can also help with pain, sleep and spasticity. THC is the primary molecule responsible for the “High” associated with cannabis.

CBDCannabidiol provides the user’s benefits without the feeling of euphoria or intoxication that some people feel from THC.  CBD has strong anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties, in addition to being neuroprotective and help with anxiety.

Both of these forms of cannabis can be consumed in different varieties.  The dried product can be vaporized, oils can be ingested via capsules or consuming the oil right from the dosed syringe. Cannabis for seniors is highly popular in capsules and tinctures form.

A recent study, published in the European Journal of Internal Medicine, found that the therapeutic use of cannabis is safe and efficacious for older persons who need relief from chronic pain, Parkinson’s disease, post-traumatic stress disorder, ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis and other disorders. 2,736 people aged 65 and older found that medical cannabis was a safe and effective treatment for pain with 93% of the study participants reporting improved quality of life following medical cannabis therapy.

“After monitoring patients 65 and older for six months, we found medical cannabis treatment significantly relieves pain and improves the quality of life for seniors with minimal side effects reported,” said internal medicine Prof. Victor Novack of BGU’s Faculty of Health Sciences and head of the Soroka Clinical Research Center.

Louise’s Story

Louise, 78 years old, has suffered for years from debilitating back pain due to spinal stenosis and arthritis.  After two failed spinal surgeries, she was seeking alternatives to the traditional pharmaceutical therapies she currently was taking.  She didn’t like the side effects of the medication and thought there could be a better option, something that was more holistic.

After doing her research (and working with her Pharmacist) she decided she wanted to try out CBD oil to help manage her daytime pain.  With some time invested, she has found her optimal dose and no longer needs any type of traditional pain medication to help her during the day.  Next on the list, help get a good restorative sleep.  Would this be with CBD? Short answer, no.  She needed a little bit of THC to help with sleep and pain management during the night.  Louise takes a small amount of THC oil just before bedtime and is now able to sleep comfortably throughout the night.  The mornings aren’t so painful getting out of bed and she is not feeling impaired at all when she wakes up.  Just well-rested.

Her outlook on life has changed because of her overall feeling of well-being, from morning to night.  Pain doesn’t control how Louise now lives her life, she can now be more involved with activities and within her social network.

This is just one account of how cannabis for seniors can assist in the daily life of an individual.  Check with your Pharmacist who is equipped to help support and manage your care to see if medical cannabis could be right for you.

Considering Medicinal Cannabis?

Are you seeking Medicinal Cannabis? Loving Home Care Services is pleased to be partnered with Apollo Cannabis & Spectrum Therapeutics – a medical division of Canopy Growth Corporation (TSX: WEED.TO) – as Canada’s first home health care provider to provide online access, education and support for ageing adults, seniors and immediate family members. If you or a loved one is interested in accessing medicinal cannabis, please visit lovinghomecareservices.com to learn more. Alternatively, click on the Apollo Cannabis Clinic logo on our home page to be forwarded on how-to steps and more!

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I Need Care! What Is Out There? Part 2

LovingHomeCareServices_I_Need_Care_What_Is_Out_There_2The Health Care System can be confusing and difficult to navigate.  When you suddenly find yourself or someone you know needing care, you may become flooded with questions and concerns about what should you do, what is available, what is the cost and what does it all mean? Should you move to an assisted living residence or stay to receive home care assistance where you are and get help in-home?  In this two-part series, we will describe the various options available to you so you can review them and discuss with your loved ones to find which option is the best fit for you.

Option 2 of 2

Staying In The Comforts of Home

If you decide to stay in your own home, these are the options available to you;

1. Subsidized Home CareProvides support for you and your caregivers in your daily living activities including bathing, dressing, exercising, medication administration and more. The goal of publicly subsidized home support services is to help you remain independent and safe in your own home as long as possible.  As with all home and community care services, the services you receive are based on your personal care needs. You must meet eligibility requirements for subsidized home support. These include;

  • Be 19 years of age and over
  • Have lived in British Columbia for three months
  • Be a Canadian citizen or have permanent resident status
  • Be unable to function independently because of chronic, health-related problems or have been diagnosed by a doctor with an end-stage illness
  • Be a landed immigrant, or are on a Minister’s permit approved by the Ministry of Health Services

You must be assessed by Home and Community Care, usually in your home, to determine your eligibility and the services needed.   There are clear guidelines and restrictions on the services provided by Home and Community Care. You will need to discuss these specifics with your case manager. Also, there is a cost for this service which is income-based.

2. Private Home Support – There are many private agencies and individuals that provide private care in your home. Private home support provides the same type of services as the subsidized system but has more flexibility and a much wider range of services they can provide and assist you with including transportation, shopping, errands, medical appointments – just to name a few. Also, you can request a consistent worker visit each day rather than a different worker each time service is provided as what occurs with the subsidized system. This consistency aids in the acceptance of the service and reduces the stress to the client and/or caregivers.

These agencies can be found in the yellow pages, newspaper, internet or through your local health unit. There are many individuals that can take advantage of a senior and prey on their trust, therefore it is imperative you find an agency, and or individual, that is reputable and reliable with bonded employees.

The cost of this service varies with each agency and is billed directly to the client and/or caregiver.

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I Need Care! What Is Out There? Part 1

LovingHomeCareServices_I_Need_Care_What_Is_Out_ThereThe Health Care System can be confusing and difficult to navigate.  When you suddenly find yourself or someone you know needing care, you may become flooded with questions and concerns about what should you do, what is available, what is the cost and what does it all mean? Should you move to an assisted living residence or stay to receive home care assistance where you are and get help in-home?  In this two-part series, we will describe the various options available to you so you can review them and discuss with your loved ones to find which option is the best fit for you. 

Option 1 of 2

Moving From Your Current Residence

If you decide to move from your present home there are these options available to you;

1. Non-Profit/Subsidized Independent Housing – This is affordable housing for seniors 55 years and older and the rent is income-based usually 30 % of income.  The majority of these residences are sponsored by a philanthropic group or foundation such as The Rotary Club, Lions Club, Kiwanis Club or BC Housing.  These are independent apartments without any services provided.

2. Supportive Housing – These residences are rental units rented at ‘market prices’.  Residents are independent for the most part but may require some assistance with meals, transportation, housekeeping and/or social activities.  Some of these residences are similar to staying in a luxury hotel and come with many amenities such as a hairdresser, gym and mini ‘spa’.  There is an Emergency Response system in each unit and non-medical staff available 9-5 which adds reassurance to the individual and family.  If you are considering such a residence, it is important to have a clear understanding as to what is available to you and what are the criteria for a continual stay.

3. Assisted Living – This rental option provides housing plus additional health services for an individual who is relatively independent but requires some assistance.  An individual must require assistance with personal care including bathing support, grooming, dressing and/or medication management to be eligible. An individual usually receives two full meals a day, weekly housekeeping, weekly laundry and 24-hour emergency support. Assisted Living Residences can either be private or subsidized by the local Health Authority.  If an individual would like to go to a subsidized Assisted Living residence, they must contact their local Health Authority for an assessment of eligibility.  The cost of subsidized is income-based. Private Assisted Living Residences vary in price.

Note – Some Supportive Housing Residences have ‘Assisted Living’ units within their complex so it is best to contact the residence to determine what services they offer.

4. Residential Care – These facilities are for individuals who can no longer care for themselves and require 24-hour medical supervision.  These facilities can either be private which vary in price or subsidized by the local Health Authority.  If an individual requires this level of care, they must be assessed by the local Health Authority for eligibility.  The cost of subsidized residential care is income-based.

In Non-Profit/Subsidized Housing, Supportive Housing and Assisted Living options an individual can receive additional home health services to what is provided in the Residence.  These services are an additional cost to the individual that can be provided by a private agency or from your local Health Authority.

Public and Private Home Care Assistance and Home Health Services will be discussed in Part Two.

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Heart Disease Causes – What To Watch For

LovingHomeCareServices-Heart-Disease-Causes-What-To-Watch-For-December-2019-BlogAs we age, the physiology of the heart may begin to change in significant ways. Though many syndromes and factors are genetic, those with healthier lifestyles are less at-risk. However, an average person should always be observant when it comes to the heart. Understanding the signs of heart disease causes, cardiac arrest, and heart failure can be crucial in preventing death, and spotting symptoms early can save lives. Let’s start off with the risk factors that play a big role in heart health:

  • Those diagnosed with diabetes or obesity are at higher risk for heart disease and heart attack.
  • High blood pressure and cholesterol could lead to heart attack and cardiac arrest.
  • Lack of exercise or physical activity can greatly increase one’s risk of heart disease.
  • Genetic history of heart problems may predispose someone to certain heart conditions.
  • Stress is an underestimated but very dangerous risk factor for heart attack.

Certain symptoms should be considered as warning signs for heart disease causes. If anyone of the following symptoms arises, they should be carefully observed, as they can warn of sudden attacks or even issues that may arise weeks from the starting point.

  • Shortness of breath
  • Irregular or fast heart-beating
  • Sudden or consistent spells of dizziness or weakness
  • Angina (a discomfort or pressure in the chest)

If more than one of these symptoms arise at any time or are consistently occurring, an examination should be prompted. These symptoms can be very dangerous when ignored, and many people make assumptions as to how the pain or symptoms arose. In these cases, it is always better to take the safe route and seek treatment or an examination.

The best way to fight off heart disease is to live a healthy lifestyle. Regular exercise and a healthy diet are often the best preventative medicine for heart issues. It doesn’t matter if the exercise is light or moderate; as long as the heart is pumping blood and the body is getting its fair share of activity, the risk-factors are significantly lessened with each step toward a less sedentary life.

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Dementia Symptoms – Mental Health Changes

Loving-Home-Care-Services-Dementia-Symptoms-Mental-Health-Changes-November-2019Dementia symptoms can be a difficult problem to approach. Sometimes, it’s hard to know exactly what to do in situations where a patient becomes volatile, distressed, or cognitively displaced. Since dementia is an umbrella term that covers a wide range of symptoms and behaviours, there are always many perspectives to consider when assisting those that suffer from it.

Dementia symptoms with patients can be behaviorally unstable, and knowing how to work with them is crucial in their care-taking. Here are some cases that you can learn to spot and work appropriately with.

Dementia Forgetfulness

Those with dementia might suffer from lapses in short-term and long-term memory. Depending on the severity of their case, they might often forget where they are (spatially) forget where they are in time (temporally) or have smaller lapses like slight and sudden disorientation. They may begin to ask questions like “Where am I?” or “When are we going home?”

When these questions arise, try not to overload the patient with excessive information. Small and quick explanations will help ease the situation and offers much more comfort. Long explanations and attempts to make them understand may only lead to more confusion and possibly aggression.

Another recovery method is to turn the patient’s attention to something else. Offer them a relaxing activity that gets their mind off their questions. By distracting their confusion with a new activity, you can ease them into a new subject and bring them to a more positive mental state.

Dementia Aggression

For those who aren’t accustomed to working with dementia symptoms and patients, aggression can be difficult to deal with. The first thing you have to understand is that the patient is not behaving aggressively on purpose. Aggression from dementia is often uncontrollable and comes from many places, including forgetfulness, disorientation, overwhelming stimuli, and physical pain. It can start up very suddenly and seemingly without reason. Though aggression can sometimes come from a lack of proper communication, in many cases you’re not to blame – and neither is the patient.

When approaching aggressive situations, communication and observation are key. Becoming upset or reacting with more aggression (especially restraining them) can make things much worse. As soon as aggressive behaviour begins, watch and listen carefully for anything that might have instigated their reaction. If it’s physical pain, try your best to accommodate them. If it’s coming from their environment, attempt to relocate them or quiet-loud noises. In speaking to them during these episodes, it’s crucial that you do so in a soft and calming tone as to not upset them more.

In any situation with a dementia patient, remember that they’re not at fault. Listen to them and be a careful observer and the proper reaction will often make itself clear. Remember to never get upset over it and always act as the anchor. Remaining calm will make the situation easier to handle and prevent things from getting worse.

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