Find Your Community

Seniors Gardening

We don’t need science to tell us how important it is to belong someplace. There is no greater feeling than to be accepted by your friends, family, and neighbors. 

Sometimes, we might find ourselves in a new place and need to find our community.  Or the community we had is now changed, and we need to find a new community.   Temma Erhenfeld writes for Psychology Today, and she points out that friendships inspire us as we age, and that we will be happiest if we focus on high quality friendships.

 My mother now lives in Florida, and she has found her community there.  The neighborhood is a caring place where friends visit each other daily, share meals, and carpool to the grocery store.  They have a standing afternoon date to binge watch an hour of television, and then take a walk down to the water to see the birds and watch the boats.

 Recently, the annual Great American Downtown meeting of the Nashua Main Street community was held at the Nashua City Hall.  Store owners, aldermen and alderwomen, city staff, journalists, and volunteers gathered to recap the 2017 activities of the non-profit downtown organization.

The accomplishments were impressive, such as the Nashua Winter Holiday Stroll and the Taste of Downtown event.  Locals will find and appreciate the community when they attend a downtown event.  

Where will you find your community?

  • Senior Center
  • Retirement Community
  • Volunteer
  • YMCA
  • Knitting or Sewing Club
  • Athletic League
  • Cooking Circle
  • Book Club
  • Fraternity
  • Church
  • Tutor or Mentor Programs

Compression Therapy eases Tired, Achy Legs, and many Medical Conditions

Tired, achy legs benefit from compression therapy.  Wearing graduated socks or stockings will increase circulation, reduce swelling, and the feeling of tired, achy legs.  Compression therapy will reduce venous pressure within your legs, by applying external pressure to your legs.  If you have ever felt these symptoms, you can visit Charron Medical Services and talk to a knowledgeable staff member about compression socks:

  •  Heavy, tired & aching legs
  • Swollen ankles and legs
  • Cramping and tingling in the legs
  • Small varicose veins
  • Dull or sharp pain in the calf
  • Post-workout fatigue in your lower limbs

 Your body is designed to pump lymphatic fluid and protein-rich blood into your limbs and muscles.  This can promote healing, but it can also put pressure on nerves and cause pain.  Furthermore, prolonged inflammation can damage healthy tissue and even hinder the healing process.

 How do you know if compression socks or sleeves will help you? 

  • Breast cancer survivors are at a higher risk of lymphedema due to damaged lymph nodes. Compression sleeves are often prescribed and recommended.
  • Travel can cause fluid to build up in your legs. Wear compression socks or tights to prevent the discomfort and fatigue of edema.
  • Compression hosiery targets some of the discomfort of pregnancy
  • Post-workout compression can reduce soreness, improve circulation, and reduce swelling to promote recovery

 

If you are in a profession that involves a lot of sitting or standing, such as teaching or healthcare, you could benefit from daily use of compression wear.  Manufacturing workers who stand on concrete surfaces will find relief in daily use of compression socks.  Anyone who travels frequently will want to reduce swelling by wearing compression gear.

 Three tips to help prevent the discomfort of tired, achy legs and edema include:

  1. Wear compression socks or tights
  2. Stay active – walk, dance, swim, hike, exercise
  3. Drink fluids

 Replace your compression socks or sleeves every three to six months.

 

Check Your FSA Deadline: Order Diabetic Shoes and Compression Socks by December 15th

Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) can have different year end rules.  If you are planning to use 2017 FSA funds for Diabetic Shoes or Custom Compression Socks/Tights , please have your order in with us before Friday, December 15th, to be sure it arrives before year end.  Call today to schedule a fitting 603-889-7220.

FSA funds can be used for a variety of medical products.  United Healthcare provides this list of FSA qualified medical expenses.  Visit our local store at 222 Main Street, Nashua, New Hampshire, and our knowledgeable staff will help you find the products you need.  

Live and Thrive in Your Own Home:  Aging in Place

 

You want to stay in your home.  Of course you do.  It is your space, just the way you like it.  Your books, your furnishings, your clothes, your photographs, your dishes, and most importantly – your memories.

But staying in your house might require some extra help.  Today, aging at home is commonly called ‘Aging in Place’.  But it can be more than that, it can mean thriving in place too!  Many seniors can live and thrive in their own homes, with a little help.

Your friends, family, and neighbors are good resources for you.  It is widely known that having a strong social network is the key to wellness, and the key to aging well.  Sometimes, our family and friends are not local.  Or perhaps they can’t visit as often as we would like. 

Other resources, such as the National Aging in Place Council, can step in to help.  You may want to connect with your local Senior Center.   Some communities have formed special non-profit organizations, such as – Community Care Givers of Greater Derry, or Monadnock at Home – having the sole mission of helping you stay independent and in your home, in your local neighborhood.  Charron Medical Services can be your local source for products – take advantage of the knowledgeable sales and service staff.  ​​

You can also help yourself, by installing equipment and tools to make your home more accessible. 

  • Home Access: it could be your front door has too many steps, or your bedroom is on the second floor.  Maybe your laundry is on the basement level, and you need to get down the stairs.  Home access is a big issue for seniors.  Fortunately, there is equipment available to help.
    • Stairlifts – both indoor and outdoor stairlifts are safe and economical in helping you live in a multi-level home. In choosing a stairlift, be sure to look for a local installer.  You will want someone who can respond quickly if you need service or repair.
    • Ramps – when it comes to overcoming the climb up your front steps, EZ Access ramps are versatile. The ramps are configurable, making them a great choice for customizing the installation to your home.  The ramps are designed to work with wheelchairs, walkers, and rollators.  They can even ease the way for ambulatory seniors who have less range and flexibility because of aging.
  • Interior Comforts: these products will improve the way you get around inside your home.
    • Ramps are also available for smoothing the transition between different floor heights or tall thresholds.
    • Seat lifts Chairs (not to be confused with stair lifts) are powered lift chairs that make is easy to get up after relaxing with a book or watching television. Powered chair lifts, such as models made by Pride and Golden, are attractive and extremely comfortable.  There are different features so be sure to think about how you will use the chair, to help select the right fit for you.
  • Scooters: if you are considering a scooter to help you get around inside or outside your home, you will want to test drive a few models.
    • Power chairs: the Go-Chair by Pride Mobility has a tight-turn radius.  You can maneuver it inside your home.  To try a Go-Chair, visit your local medical supply store.  
    • Pride Scooters: there are several models of outdoor scooters available.  To learn about the different models, such as the Go-Go Elite, visit the store and test drive the different models.  If you are undecided, you can start by renting a scooter and see how it helps you get around.
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It might seem overwhelming at times, but before you give up the dream of staying in your home – Aging in Place – talk with others who have made the accommodations to their homes.  Call the National Aging in Place Council.  And visit your local medical supply store.  The Durable Medical Equipment (DME) industry is here to serve you.  The products are designed with you in mind.  Choose a local store, where you can try the products, and be assured of prompt, quality, in home service and repair.

GERD Symptoms and Head Elevation While Sleeping

Reflux, sometimes known as Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), is a disease involving the stomach and esophagus. Unlike occasional heartburn we all get from time-to-time, GERD is painful burning in the chest and can even reach your throat and mouth.  Often, it will disrupt your daily activities.  Though not life threatening, you may find that some foods triggers an acid reflux attack.  Some people with GERD have trouble sleeping, because lying down can allow the stomach acid to more easily enter the esophagus.  People with GERD often complain of not sleeping well, or frequently waking throughout the night.  Solving this nighttime problem can bring much needed relief.  One customer of Charron Medical purchased an electric hospital bed to improve her sleep.   

Understanding GERD is the first step on a treatment path.  After your doctor has diagnosed your condition, you will develop a treatment plan together.  It is extremely important that you pay attention to your own individual triggers.  Healthline recommends keeping a journal to record your symptoms and the triggers that might worsen or bring on a reflux event.  Some of the triggers people notice are:

  • Eating meals close to bedtime
  • Spicy foods
  • Wearing tight fitting clothes

Relieving the symptoms of GERD can bring peace and joy back to simple pleasures like enjoying a good night’s sleep.  If nighttime reflux is a problem for you, consider some of these activities to help relieve your GERD symptoms:

  • Don’t lie down after meals.  Stay upright or take a walk.
  • Finish your last meal 2-hours before bedtime
  • Elevate your head while sleeping.  Use a bed wedge or consider buying a hospital bed, to adjust the head up.

Elevating your head while sleeping may reduce esophageal acid exposure and regurgitation, which can happen if you are a nocturnal (nighttime) refluxer.

There is a lot of information on the internet about reflux and GERD.  The American Gastroenterological Association is a good resource.  And some hospitals, like Massachusetts General Hospital, are working every day to develop new and more effective treatments for GERD.

Charron Medical Services carries a variety of bed wedge sizes, to help keep your head elevated after eating and during sleep.  Hospital beds can also be purchased or rented monthly; electric controls allow you to select the right head height for you.  Please call 603-889-7220, if you have questions about our products.

 

Electric Hospital Bed