Thankful for Caregivers
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Looking after a loved one as they age is often seen as a milestone in life. Carefully helping your family member to be independent even as their health fails is seen as a wonderful way to preserve a family bond. And while caregiving for an ailing senior is a beautiful task, it can also be a taxing experience. 

Frequently, the focus of family caregiving scenarios falls on the seniors being aided. Rarely do we, as a society, consider the well-being of the caregivers. It’s a stressful, consuming, and sometimes thankless job to care for a loved one, but caregiving for someone else should never come at the expense of your own health.

A recent University of Eastern Finland study found that psychological stress was prevalent in caregivers. This stress exacerbated any previously experienced health conditions, especially depression. The stress of caregiving increased when caregivers tended to loved ones who had Alzheimer’s disease. Untreated, psychological stress could lead to mental or physical collapse.

So, what should a caregiver do if they feel themselves succumbing to the pressure of tending a loved one? Provide care for themselves.

Caregivers should always make their mental and physical health a priority. They should realize that feeling stressed is neither a sign of weakness nor an uncommon occurrence. If a caregiver is having trouble coping with stress or is feeling overwhelmed, it may be time to seek help.

Capital City Nurses is a home-care company and can offer full or part-time care for your loved one, alleviating the ongoing pressure caregivers often encounter. Help can be in the form of a few hours to yourself, or a few days of care covered each week. Work out a schedule that allows you to take care of both your loved one and yourself.

At Capital City Nurses, we know that caregiving can be one of the most beautiful ways to bond with a loved one—but only if you’re also taking care of yourself.

Massage therapy is an excellent way to recharge and could be a delightful gift for your caregivers this holiday season!
Aromatherapy can be a very soothing and calming experience that your caregiver can enjoy and share with you.

Are You Finding it
Difficult to Swallow?

contributed by Susan I. Wranik, MS, MA, CCC-SLP
Speech-Language Pathologist
President, Susan I. Wranik Associates, L.L.C.
Eating is one of life’s great pleasures!  No one should suffer in the process. As we age, we may not eat as much for a variety of reasons:  our  taste buds may not be as sharp; medication can change the taste in the mouth rendering food unappealing; and sometimes it’s difficult to swallow.

Signs of trouble swallowing include:
  • coughing
  • wet voice
  • throat clearing
  • watery eyes when eating
If you or someone you know is experiencing discomfort or pain when swallowing, see an otolaryngologist.  Difficulty with swallowing can be the first sign of something more serious, like Parkinson’s. And it may be something easily treated.  

Did you know?
  • That you should put your chin down when you swallow – never up – for greater airway protection. It really does make it easier to swallow.
  • Coughing is the body’s way of removing a foreign body from the airway.  The best thing to do when someone is coughing is to let them finish.  Do not hit them on the back.
  • You stop breathing when you swallow, which is why frail people become fatigued and it takes them longer to eat and those who eat quickly are out of breath.
  • Dehydration can cause symptoms similar to dementia: forgetfulness and confusion.
  • When someone loses weight, bone density, or body mass, that loss is also reflected in the gums, so dentures may no longer fit as well.  For some, it’s more comfortable to eat without them.
  • First on last off:  the things we learn to do first in life (smile, eat, names of mother and father) are the last things we lose in life.  So it is not uncommon for people to eat with their hands. We use those before silverware.
  • People eat better if you keep them company and eat with them.
  • If you are feeding someone, be seated.  Do not feed them while you are standing.
  • Puree and thickened liquids are a solution to a problem.  Be sure you know what the problem is before making changes in consistency and texture.  Such changes may not be appropriate.
  • The potential for aspiration pneumonia is highest among those who are fed by someone else and In the presence of poor oral hygiene.  So brush your teeth regularly and keep your mouth clean.
  • Bacteria is what causes aspiration pneumonia.  
Swallowing and End of Life:
People don’t die because they stop eating; people stop eating because they are preparing to die.

People at end of life who stop eating do not starve to death.  They do not feel pain.  Their bodies are shutting down and the body has a marvelous way of protecting itself from pain.  The body chemistry adjusts and puts the body into a state of euphoria, a dream state so they do not suffer or feel pain from not eating.

Atropine is used in hospice care to control secretions, however It dries up the salivary glands and makes it difficult for the person to initiate a swallow which can be very frightening.  You have the right to refuse medications.  

A speech-language pathologist may be able to help you strengthen swallow function with simple exercises. (Look for the CCC-SLP to be sure they are board certified).  Remember, eating is one of life’s great pleasures.  No one should suffer in the process!

Diabetes Awareness Month

The American Diabetes Association wants to show how easy and joyful healthy eating can be, and are sharing recipes selected by noted chefs and cookbook authors for every meal of the day on their website.

End Alzheimer's Walk

The Capital City Nurses team walked to End Alzheimer's on Saturday Oct. 24th. Lots of awareness and money was raised as well as fun, face painting and exercise too! Thank you to all who attended! See more pictures on our Facebook page
We provide the best care available to clients and families with varying needs. Our team of nurses, nursing assistants, and care providers offers the following services:Care Assessment
  • ADL (Activities of daily living)
  • Elder Care
  • Post-Operative Care
  • Short & Sweet
  • Medication Management
  • “Daughter Down the Street/Son Stopping By” Companion Service
Any question, any time, no matter where you are in your journey, one of our experienced care coordinators is available to listen and provide answers.

We’re available 24/7

The Cottage at Curry Manor
Refined Residential Living
for Seniors

Please call us 301-652-4344
Click here for a virtual tour

Click here for the Cottage at Curry Manor newsletter

Service Area

Capital City Nurses serves the greater Washington, Baltimore and Annapolis areas including the Eastern Shore of Maryland, and Delaware. We work with your schedule and come to you, wherever you are.

For more information, or to schedule a caregiver, call the Capital City
Nurses toll-free hotline at: 1-866-687-7307

Coastal Home Care Services (Eastern & Western shores)
1323 Mt. Herman Rd.,
Suite 5B
Salisbury, MD 21804


Coastal Home Care now has its own monthly newsletter! Click here to read it

Office in Delaware
20771 Professional Park Boulevard
Georgetown, Delaware, 19947


Office in Severna Park, MD (Annapolis)
2485 Ritchie Highway
Suite 206 A
Severna Park, MD 21146


Copyright © 2015 Capital City Nurses, All rights reserved.

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