Ask Sarah: 3 Ways Stairlifts Benefit Mom and Dad

Dear Sarah,

Both of my parents have recently had trouble getting up and down the stairs to the second floor of their house where their bedroom is located. I have read some recent articles about stairlifts on the internet and I think installing a stairlift in their home would help them to get around, but I’m not sure how to approach my parents on the topic. I know they want to regain their mobility and independence, which is why I think the installation of a stairlift may be a good idea. Do you have any advice on how to get my parents to consider the addition of a stairlift? 

Carol, Coldwater, OH

 

Hi Carol,

It sounds like the addition of a stairlift would be the perfect fit for both your mom and your dad! I know that sometimes as our parents age, they do worry about their independence. And while they may see a stairlift (at first) as a hindrance of their freedom, in reality, the addition of a stairlift to one’s home is a great benefit. We need to help our parents embrace the idea because it will allow them to continue to do the things they have always done so well on their own, but easier this time!

Try asking your parents if the following factors are important to them as they age and struggle with their mobility:

  1. The ability to carry everyday items and move between floors safely, reducing the possibility of injury.
  2. Remaining in the comfort of their own home.
  3. Maintaining their confidence and independence no matter what their age.

Installing a stairlift can help your parents maintain all of the above benefits, and much, much more. Likewise, I have had several customers who were surprised at how cost-friendly the installation of a stairlift was. While one may think the installation is extremely out-of-budget, they typically soon realize (after having the discussion) that installing a stairlift is much more budget-friendly than the addition of other in-home elevators and other lift devices.

At New Visions, we want you and your parents to know that we care about the safety and well-being of all of our current, potential and future customers. Together, we work with you to find the best fit for your needs. If you and/or your parents have any questions at all about the benefits of our stairlifts or any other products we offer, please feel free to give me, Sarah, a call personally at 419.678.4979.

I hope my answers give you and your parents a little more insight on the importance of finding the right stairlift in order to ensure the proper safety and desired independence levels for your mom and dad.

Thank you.

Sarah at New Visions

Ask Sarah Headshot

 

Do you have a question you would like to ask me? Please feel free to email me at info@newvisionsmedical.com and I would be happy to help!

Medicare’s Role in Adjustable Beds

One of the first things you may find yourself asking is, “Wait. What is the difference between adjustable beds, regular beds and hospital beds?” Well, we have the answer for you! Below we outline the difference between regular, adjustable and hospital beds, as well as which are covered under Medicare and which are not.

  • Regular beds – These are your everyday beds which don’t allow for any adjustment on overall height of the bed or the head/foot areas. Regular beds are commonly purchased by those who do not have any health/medical concerns.
  • Adjustable beds – Today’s more modern adjustable bed allows the user to elevate both the head and foot areas of the bed in order to find the optimal position for comfort regarding a variety of health considerations. Users can benefit from therapeutic features as well, including pillow top and memory foam mattress additions! These “luxury” beds are considered to be the most comfortable beds on the market.
  • Hospital beds -These beds are designed for individuals with more serious medical issues and their caregivers. Not only can these beds adjust at the head and foot, but they can also be raised toward the ceiling or lowered toward the floor, helping ease back pain caregivers may commonly experience.

Discovering the Right Bed for Your Needs

Now, which is the right one for YOU?

  1. Adjustable beds -If you are not worried about falling out of bed at night and are looking for something that looks like a traditional bed—and comes in multiple mattress size options, allowing you and your spouse to continue to share a bed—an adjustable bed may be the make for you. An adjustable bed can allow you to benefit from the therapeutic features of adjustability without the negative stigma associated with hospital beds. Have a headboard and/or footboard you love and don’t want to get rid of it? No problem! Simply attach it to the base for a seamless transition to your new bed. Likewise, your bed has the ability to come with wired or wireless hand controls, depending on the model chosen. This bed is the perfect solution if you are looking for the health and comfort benefits of adjustability and easy rest. Adjustable beds are not covered by Medicare, but are made to be extremely affordable.
  2. Hospital beds -If you or a loved one suffers from severe medical issues requiring a bed that can be easily moved or adjusted up and down, a hospital bed may be the correct choice. However, be aware that because these bed types are designed for industrial use, you will notice they have a much bulkier frame, come with side rails and are available ONLY in twin sizes, which does not allow a patient to sleep with their partner. Likewise, the heavy frame makes it extremely difficult to disguise a hospital bed as a traditional flat bed. A plus is that this bed is typically covered under Medicare.

We hope this information helped you get a better idea of which type of bed is the right fit for you. If you are looking to purchase or try an adjustable bed, give the professionals at New Visions Medical Equipment a call at 419.678.4979 or email us at info@newvisionsmedical.com today

 

Ask Sarah: Helping Mom Get in and Out of the Shower Safely

Dear Sarah,

A few months back my mom started having trouble getting in and out of the shower. It started slowly, but as the weeks go by she seems to be having more and more trouble. It has now gotten to the point where either one of my siblings or myself has to be there for her at all times in case she falls trying to get into the tub/shower area. Are there any solutions to help mom regain her independence, while ensuring her safety at the same time?

Thanks for your help.

Sincerely,

Carla, St. Marys, OH

 

Hi Carla,

That is a great question, and a very common issue among older adults. Aging parents often begin to worry about being able to lift their legs high enough to clear the tub when getting in, or falling and or slipping once they are actually in the shower. Although this fear is a common occurrence, I know first-hand how stressful this can become for you and your siblings. In reality, you just don’t have the time to spend each waking minute at your parents’ house to ensure their safety, especially if you are caring for your own family.

Fortunately, there are several options you can consider to help your mother regain her independence and, in return, take some of the stress off of your own back. For example, one thing that would be a great addition to your mother’s bath area is a transfer bench, which would allow your mom a chance to sit down and then slide over into the tub.

She could even use the chair during the shower, should she become weak and fear that she may fall down. Likewise, a grab bar, which comes in many different lengths and styles will give your mother something secure to hold onto, helping her to regain her independence while decreasing her fear of falling when getting in and out of the shower area. If you are mostly worried about her ability to get in and out of the shower, consider looking into a new bathtub element known as the Safeway Step. This addition will provide your mother with much easier access into the bathtub, allowing her to walk right into the shower, rather than having to lift her leg up and over the tub. Plus, there is no need to buy a new tub –additions can be made to the current tub you have!

And remember, there is no shame in looking into hiring a professional caregiver to spend time with your mom throughout the day or help her with activities that she may not be able to do on her own anymore. If you are unsure of where to start looking for a part-time care provider, reach out to her doctor for advice.

I hope these suggestions help and that you and your siblings are able to find the best safety option to fit your mother’s needs. If you have further questions, feel free to reach out to me at 419.678.4979 or stop by New Visions Medical to test out some of our bath safety products.

Ask Sarah HeadshotGood Luck!

Sarah at New Visions

Do you have a question you would like to ask me? Please feel free to email me at info@newvisionsmedical.com and I would be happy to help!

Check Out Our New Line of Therapeutic Shoes to Help Keep You Active!

You may find yourself asking, “What are therapeutic shoes and why should I even consider them?” Therapeutic shoes are intended to reduce the risk of skin breakdown in diabetics with co-existing foot disease. The primary goal of these shoes is to prevent complications such as strain, ulcers, calluses and/or even amputations for those with poor circulation or diabetes. Therapeutic shoes offer a multitude of benefits to help you to avoid foot injuries and improve your mobility today!

Top 4 Benefits of Therapeutic Shoes

  1. They provide both support and comfort wear. Often therapeutic shoes and inserts can be tailored to decreased pain as well as many foot-related conditions such as plantar fasciitis, diabetic neuropathy and bunions.
  2. Approximately 60%-70% of diabetics have peripheral neuropathy which is often felt as pain, tingling or numbness. With therapeutic shoes, you can often decrease the pain and nerve sensation in a short period of time.
  3. Therapeutic shoes offer excellent stability, giving your feet the proper support that they need. The extra stability will help distribute the weight of your body throughout the entire foot to decrease pain and tension.
  4. The often seamless design of therapeutic shoes helps prevent irritation to sensitive areas on your feet. They also have the ability to prevent foot ulcers by increasing overall circulation to the feet.

Be proactive and talk to your doctor today about how you can work to prevent diabetic foot disease with the use of therapeutic shoes.

Head on over to New Visions Medical Equipment and check out our BRAND NEW line of therapeutic shoes today! Talk to Karla, a Certified Therapeutic Shoe Fitter, and get a $10.00 gift certificate to use at Specialty Shoes and More- located inside of New Visions! Or if you would like to discuss how therapeutic shoes can further assist you, feel free to give Karla a call at 419.852.3121 or email her at specialtyshoesandmore@hotmail.com.

P.S. We even have therapeutic socks to try with your shoes. Hurry in today!

Remodeling Your Bathroom? 3 Things You Should Consider Installing

Remodeling a bathroom can be a lot of work. And when you’re first getting started, you want to make sure you are including EVERYTHING you may need in your new bathroom in order to prevent a costly rework in the future. Below we outline the top 3 items you should consider installing in your newly renovated bathroom.

 

3 Items to Include in Your Bathroom Remodeling Project

  1. Grab Bar. Mobility issues can be one of the most difficult problems to overcome in a bathroom. If you or a family member need help with mobility, or perhaps foresee yourself needing help in the future, a grab bar is a great solution. Not only do these items come in many different lengths, but they also come in various finishes in order to match both your needs and your bathroom decor!
  2. Safeway Step. This item, friendly for all ages, is often overlooked when remodeling a bathroom. Heck, you may not even know such an item exists! The Safeway Step is one-of-a-kind and designed to provide an economical renovation option for individuals and facilities looking to provide both high quality and easier access into the bathtub area. This step can be used to retrofit your bathtub into a walk-in shower! If you often find yourself experiencing leg pain, have trouble lifting your feet over the edge of the tub or just want something that is EASY, you should look into the Safeway Step feature!
  3. Shower Chair. There are a multitude of reasons to include a shower chair in your newly renovated bathroom (or you will wish you had one if you didn’t consider it in the first place!). Are you getting exhausted from daily tasks more frequently as you age? Did you recently have to undergo an unexpected surgery? Or maybe your active child tore their ACL in sports and is struggling to stand for long periods of time? A shower chair can serve a wide range of individuals for a variety of different reasons. Be proactive and include a shower chair in your bathroom renovation today!

 

Remember, these are only the top 3 items you should consider putting into your newly renovated bathroom. The list of other beneficial products goes on and on! You can view more bathroom safety and remodel products here.

 

If you are looking to renovate your bathroom but don’t know where to get started or what to include, give the professionals at New Visions Medical Equipment a call at 419.678.4979 or email us at info@newvisionsmedical.com today!

Intergenerational Vacations Can Be Fun!

You’ve decided it is time for a family vacation and you want to take everyone (including your mom and dad) on the trip. But how do you begin the planning to make it fun for your children and your parents? Here are some quick tips to make vacationing with your parents both fun and easy!

4 Tips for Family Fun on Vacation

 

  1. Remember there are laws that assist you.

When you are traveling, remember that the American Disabilities Act requires that you get assistance when you are traveling with parents or kids with special needs. This includes access to ALL facilities you travel to and free wheelchairs upon arrival to your destination. However, you can travel with your own mobility device and that is just as easy. Remember to follow all directions to keep your mobility device in top condition when traveling.

 

  1. Consider hiring a health care aid.

Depending on your budget, you can hire a health care specialist to help eliminate stress while you are vacationing. This is a great way to make sure you have extra hands and eyes on your aging parents so you can be attentive to their needs and make sure everyone is enjoying the vacation together.

 

  1. Trip insurance can be helpful.

Intergenerational trips can be a blast for everyone, but don’t get caught up in the anxiety that plans could change. Do your due diligence with research about trip insurance in case there is an emergency and the travel plans change. Also look at healthcare insurance for traveling. There are many options and your current plan might have travel insurance as well. Having proper insurance when you travel alleviates a lot of headaches and makes the trip more enjoyable for everyone.

 

  1. Communication makes the day fun!

The goal of a family trip is to make sure everyone enjoys the trip and each other. This means you need to communicate honestly with your parents about their limitations and what they feel comfortable doing. Having the conversation before the trip is best so no one is put on the spot or feels bad if they cannot participate in an activity.

 

Creating a trip this summer with your parents and kids can be a fun experience and create many long-lasting memories. With proper planning you can make sure mom and dad can get around and enjoy the tip with you and their grandchildren!

 

Are you looking for mobility devices to help make your intergenerational vacation more care free and easy? We can help! Give us a call at 419.678.4979 or stop in to New Visions Medical Equipment today!

Does Your Neck Kill? 6 Tips to a Healthy Neck

If you find yourself constantly having neck pain, consider trying these 6 quick and simple suggestions to have a happy, healthy neck again.

  1. Correct your sleep posture. Do not sleep on your stomach. If you still experience neck pain after switching sleeping positions, try using a feather pillow –which more easily allows for the pillow to conform to the shape of your neck.
  2. Sit up when you watch television. I know, I know. It’s not as comfortable to watch television sitting up as it is lying down, but unfortunately this bad habit can be particularly devastating to your neck muscles. Sit in an upright position FACING the television so that you do not have to strain your neck to turn and watch your favorite show. Believe me, your neck will thank you!
  3. Wear purses, briefcases or other bags across the body. Avoid carrying purses or other bags on just one shoulder, as it can cause extensive strain on the natural slope of your shoulder. To reduce stress and allow for equal distribution of the weight of your purse or bag, wear carrying cases across the body.
  4. Stretch your neck properly. It is important that you take the time to properly stretch your neck in order to avoid neck pain. Not only can stretching help to relieve neck pain, but it can also help to strengthen the muscles in your neck and reduce your chance of stiff joints and tight muscles in the future.
  5. Use a headset instead of a phone. Women are probably more apt to this than men, but never (and I repeat NEVER) hold your phone between your head and shoulder. I know this may be convenient as you are trying to juggle multiple tasks at once in your busy life, but this can cause extensive strain on the muscles in your neck. If you use the phone frequently, try purchasing a headset or Bluetooth device to alleviate the stress on your neck muscles.
  6. Customize your chair and adjust your posture. If you work at a desk most of the day, make sure the height of your chair is accurate so that your feet are placed firmly on the ground. Sit up straight with your shoulders back, avoiding “slumping” forward (even when you’re tired!). The head of the neck is subject to the curvature of the spine below it, therefore making it vital that you practice good posture at all times. Spend less time with a forward head posture to avoid developing neck and shoulder problems.

 

And always, seek medical attention if your neck pain is recurring. Our tips above are not meant to replace medical treatment, so if you continue to experience discomfort or pain, please reach out to your healthcare provider as soon as possible.

 

Here at New Visions, we strive to make sure you are comfortable, happy and as healthy as you can be. We offer many pain products specific to your needs. Give us a call at 419.678.4979 or contact us today to learn how we can help get your joints back to feeling healthy and happy again!

 

Resources:

http://blogs.msdn.com/b/tiptalk/archive/2006/01/10/510256.aspx

http://www.health.harvard.edu/pain/say-good-night-to-neck-pain

http://www.everydayhealth.com/columns/daniel-baumstark-physical-injury-and-rehab/5-tips-to-prevent-neck-pain/

Save BIG at New Visions’ Exclusive Get Up and Go Event!

Whether you are a senior using a scooter or power chair to get around and keep up with your exciting and active lifestyle or a young athlete looking for sports and pain management products—or even someone in between—the Get Up and Go event is right for you! Welcoming individuals of all ages, this event won’t disappoint! Food, fun, prizes, savings and nice weather—what more could a person want?!

Event Details

This event will be hosted by yours truly at our store: New Visions Medical Equipment, located in Coldwater, Ohio.

  • Who? YOU! This exclusive event is open to the general public and we invite those in all stages of life. Come one, come all!
  • What? Get Up and Go Event featuring food, fun and prizes! See below for details.
  • Where? New Visions Medical Equipment
    4108 State Route 118
    Coldwater, OH 45828
  • When? Saturday, June 13th
    9 AM to 1 PM

The Perks

  • $100 off all new scooters
  • FREE spring cleanings and diagnostic checks for current scooters or mobility devices
    • This includes cleaning, battery checks, making sure the tires are properly inflated, and overall inspection to make sure the mobility device is in proper working order)
  • FREE food (hot dogs, chips, homemade cookies and drinks)
  • Door prizes
    • Mobility accessories (cup holders and accessory bags)
    • Automatic blood pressure monitor
    • T-shirts
    • Bio-Freeze
    • Inspirational wall art
    • Visa gift cards
    • More prizes arriving daily!

Grand opening and a new product!

See what’s NEW at New Visions! Specialty Shoes & More will be celebrating their Grand Opening during our event! Located inside of New Visions, Specialty Shoes & More offers therapeutic shoes for diabetics, plantar fasciitis and much more! Stop by and talk to Karla, a certified therapeutic shoe fitter, and receive a $10 gift certificate to use towards Specialty Shoes & More!

At New Visions, we pride ourselves in offering the highest quality of mobility, bath safety and pain management products for individuals at all stages of life. To learn more about our event and how it can benefit you, please email info@newvisionsmedical.com or give us a call us at 419.678.4979.

Top 5 Features to Consider When Buying a Scooter

Is it seemingly getting more and more difficult to get around your home? What about getting in and out of the grocery store? Aging can sometimes make it hard for us to admit we need help with our mobility. Don’t be embarrassed! Mobility scooters are popular because they help you maintain your independence and get around—with ease, might I add—in your everyday life.

Purchasing a scooter can seem like a tedious task. How do you do it? Where do you start? Where do you go? It doesn’t have to be that way! That is why the team members at New Visions Medical have put together the top 5 things you should consider when purchasing a scooter.

5 Considerations When Purchasing a Scooter

  1. Maximum weight capacity. We never want to talk about weight, but it’s essential when it comes to buying a mobility scooter. If you weigh over 250 lbs., then you may need to purchase a more durable scooter to help you get around most efficiently. Every mobility scooter has a maximum weight capacity for optimum performance. You need to make sure you find the right one for you.
  2. Ease of maneuverability. Where do you plan to use the scooter? If you plan to use the scooter in a supermarket or home, you may need a scooter that has a tighter turning radius. A 3-wheeled scooter is known for having the best turning radius; however, you still want to make sure it fits your other needs, too. When purchasing a scooter, ask the provider to demonstrate the turning capability so you can make sure it fits your needs for your everyday tasks.
  3. Flexibility and comfortability of arms and seat. If you will be getting in and out of your scooter on a regular basis, you will want arms that rotate back and allow you to get on and off the scooter with ease. In regards to the seat, if you are getting on and off the scooter frequently, the standard seat is should be suitable for your needs. But if you plan to spend the majority of your time on your scooter, consider looking into a more comfortable seat that has extra padding. If you are going to be on your scooter most of your time throughout your day, the last thing you want is to be uncomfortable!
  4. How easy it will transport. A commonly overlooked factor when purchasing a scooter is how easy it will be to transport. This is a very important element to your scooter purchase and should not be overlooked. How can you transport your scooter with ease? If you plan to travel with your scooter, you want one that can be dismantled easily or one that you can load and take with you without a hassle. This can often be a challenge because you really don’t know how easy it will be to load it into your car until you try! Practice with a scooter at the store before you make your purchase in order to ensure you are getting what you need.
  5. Where it will be used. Think about how you live day to day. Will you use your scooter in your home or outside more? These are important factors to consider when selecting your scooter. If you will be using over a rough terrain, you should consider a 4-wheeled scooter. But if your scooter will be used mostly indoors or tight spaces in your home, consider looking at the various options for 3-wheeled scooters. These factors all play an important role in the type of scooter you will want to make your day-to-day tasks much simpler.

We know that selecting a mobility scooter is not an easy task, but is one that needs careful consideration in order to properly meet your daily needs. If you think a scooter might be the right choice for you or your loved one, be sure to check out our products page, or give us a call us at 419.678.4979 to discover how New Visions Medical can help you find the right scooter for your needs!

Superfoods to Keep You Healthy

As you age, you want to make sure you are keeping your overall health at the top of your list of things to do, and that starts with focusing on feeding your body the proper vitamins and nutrients to keep it in tip-top shape. Below we discuss the top 5 superfoods you should be eating.

 

5 Superfoods for Optimal Health as You Age

  1. Avocado This yummy item is filled with lots of nutrients and healthy fats, including Omega-6, folate, omega-3, potassium and vitamin B6. Not only does this super fruit lower your cholesterol and blood pressure, but it also aids in fighting against cancer.
  2. Pomegranate Looking to reduce joint pain, fight viruses, prevent strokes or do all three?! Look no further! Pomegranates are very advantageous in helping you build a healthier lifestyle. With fiber, folate, potassium and vitamins C and K, you can’t go wrong!
  3. Blueberries Keep your vision top-notch with this healthy superfood. Filled with manganese, lots of fiber, vitamins C and K, and anthocyanin, blueberries are powerful agents in protecting your heart, benefiting eyesight and memory, and even helping combat cancer and diabetes!
  4. Salmon Build muscle (which will keep you lean and strong)! This superhero food will also help you avoid obesity, reduce inflammation and pain and combat autoimmune disorders. Need more Vitamin B3, B12 and D, and omega-3 in your life? Salmon is your answer! Pair it with ginger–which contains multiple anti-inflammatory properties–to amplify pain relief and provide for a delicious meal!
  5. Soy and flaxseed. One of the most important organs you should be taking care of as you age is your heart. If you want to pack “double punches” when it comes to heart protection, be sure to incorporate plenty of soy and flaxseed into your daily diet routine. For example, drink soy milk, eat edamame, tofu, and other soy-based products to lower cholesterol and increase the amount of heart healthy fiber in your body! In addition, these heart healthy superfoods provide plenty of fiber and omega-3’s to reduce your risk of heart disease tremendously. Add flaxseed to almost any recipe (without being able to tell) for a multitude of added benefits!

 

You only get one body, so it’s important that you keep it healthy and protect it as you age. Eating more of this good stuff and cutting out junk foods can not only prevent cancer and protect your heart, but did you know that it can even help you to extend your lifespan? Who doesn’t want more time to spend being active with their grandkids?! Always remember, what you eat not only affects the way you look on the outside, but it also affects the way you look on the inside. You are what you eat, so treat your body the way it should be treated!

 

Eating right is a great start to reducing pain, but if you are already experiencing excruciating pain, maybe it’s time to explore other options. Check out our products page, or give us a call us at 419.678.4979 to discover how New Visions Medical can help you fight pain and start living a more active, independent and healthy lifestyle.

 

 

 

Resources:

http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=1669

http://www.readersdigest.ca/food/healthy-food/5-winter-superfoods-keep-you-healthy?id=4#0RwK8GQFOYB60lcM.97

http://www.prevention.com/food/healthy-eating-tips/10-powerful-superfoods?slide=1

http://www.eatingwell.com/nutrition_health/nutrition_news_information/10_everyday_superfoods?page=4