Is It Time to Stop Driving?

Signs that it may be time for an older driver to quit

(HealthDay News) — As cognitive function, coordination, eyesight and other skills decline in old age, it may be time for an elderly person to quit driving.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration mentions these warning signs that seniors may no longer be able to drive safely:

• Becoming lost when taking a familiar route.

• Appearance of new scratches and dents on the car.

• Getting ticketed for a driving violation.

• Getting into a car accident, or having a near-miss.

• Receiving a recommendation from a doctor to stop or reduce driving, having health problems that impact driving, or taking medications that affect driving.

• Finding that road signs and road markings are suddenly overwhelming.

• Driving too fast or too slowly for no apparent reason.

If you have found yourself or a loved one in this position and need assistance give VEW for Independence a call to assist you with all your transportation and errand needs.

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Avoiding Caregiver Burnout

Caring for an aging parent or older adult can take a toll, especially when you have a lot going on.
You may feel pulled in many directions and forced to make compromises and sacrifices.
It’s easy to become so focused on other people’s needs that you stop taking care of yourself.
That’s called caregiver burnout, and it can affect your health and your quality of life.
Below are some of the signs of a caregiver burnout.
If your not sure if your experiencing a caregiver burnout or see these signs in a friend or family member that is caring for a loved one take the caregiver burnout quiz below.

Some signs of caregiver burnout include:

Irritability

You snap at people for small things; you lose patience easily.

Withdrawal

You don’t stay in touch with friends or pursue activities that you enjoyed in the past.

Fatigue

You are constantly feeling tired and overwhelmed.

Insomnia

You have a hard time getting to sleep, staying asleep or you sleep restlessly.

Apathy


You feel numb and must force yourself to do routine tasks.

Guilt

You think you are not doing enough or you feel resentment over the amount of work you are doing.

Anxiety

You constantly wonder if you are making the best decisions for your loved one. You may also be under a lot of stress in dealing with other family member’s conflicting ideas of the best care for your loved one.

Quiz: Are You Heading for Caregiver Burnout?

Use this quiz to assess your risk, and then learn strategies every caregiver needs.

By Paula Spencer, Caring.com senior editor

Caregiving can bring many positives into your life — but it’s also hard work, physically and emotionally.
If you don’t take enough self-care to replenish yourself, then caregiver stress, anxiety, and depression can build.
And that puts you on the path for caregiver burnout, a syndrome of mental, emotional, and physical depletion.
“Caregiving requires a certain amount of selflessness, but it’s important for caregivers to know their limits,” says Caring.com senior medical editor Ken Robbins, a geriatric psychiatrist at the University of Wisconsin who’s also board certified in internal medicine.
“Caregivers can become so focused on the person they’re assisting that they neglect their own needs.”
Caregiver burnout interferes with your ability to function.
Burnout also raises your risk of chronic depression and other mental and physical ailments, from hypertension and flu to diabetes, stroke, or even premature death.

Caregiver burnout is also a leading cause of nursing home placement, when run-down caregivers become too depleted to manage caregiving demands.

“It’s important for caregivers to be aware of this phenomenon and to find ways to either prevent or minimize it when they realize it’s happening,” Robbins says.

What’s your caregiver burnout index?

Answer the following 12 questions, add up your score (A = 4 points, B = 3 points, C = 2 points, D = 1 point), and learn lifesaving strategies for managing the unique stress of caregiving.

1. How often do you get a good night’s sleep (seven or more hours)?

a. Every day
b. Often
c. Sometimes
d. Seldom or never

2. How often do you keep up with leisure activities that you enjoyed before caregiving?

a. Every day
b. Often
c. Sometimes
d. Seldom or never

3. How often do you feel irritable or lose your temper with others?

a. Seldom or never
b. Sometimes
c. Often
d. Every day

4. How often do you feel happy?

a. Every day
b. Often
c. Sometimes
d. Seldom or never

5. How often do you find it difficult to concentrate?

a. Seldom or never
b. Sometimes
c. Often
d. Every day

6. How often do you need a cigarette(s) or more than two cups of coffee to make it through the day?

a. Seldom or never
b. Sometimes
c. Often
d. Every day

7. How often do you lack the energy to cook, clean, and take care of everyday basics?

a. Seldom or never
b. Sometimes
c. Often
d. Every day

8. How often do you feel hopeless about the future?

a. Seldom or never
b. Sometimes
c. Often
d. Every day

9. How often are you able to relax without the use of alcohol or prescription sedatives?

a. Every day
b. Often
c. Sometimes
d. Seldom or never

10. How often do you feel overwhelmed by all you have to do?

a. Seldom or never
b. Sometimes
c. Often
d. Every day

11. How often has someone criticized your caregiving or suggested you’re burning out?

a. Seldom or never
b. Sometimes
c. Often
d. Every day

12. How often do you feel that someone is looking after or caring for you?

a. Every day
b. Often
c. Sometimes
d. Seldom or never

How did you score?

This self-test isn’t a scientific or diagnostic measure; it’s meant to help you identify whether your stress level warrants taking steps toward better protecting yourself.

Add up your score. Each A = 4 points, B = 3 points, C = 2 points, D = 1 point.

48-42: Keeping your cool (low burnout risk)

Your heart and head are both in the right place, and your stress-busting reservoirs are full, which helps you to give with grace and good humor. That said, caregiver stress often creeps up without a caregiver realizing it. Protecting your healthful habits is paramount.

What to do:

Keep yourself well fueled for caring by making time for yourself every day — at minimum, aim for several five-minute pick-me-ups for caregiver stress. If you’re in a relationship, know that a healthy marriage or other close relationship can be a source of strength; learn how caregiving couples can make it work.

30-41: Feverish (elevated burnout risk)

You’re likely managing caregiver stress reasonably well but falling into a common caregiver trap: Letting yourself sink lower on the daily priority list than is healthy for you. Everyone has an occasional crazy-busy day, but too many of them results in chronic stress — which erodes well-being and places you at risk for depression, colds, and other illnesses.

What to do:

Protect your time for self-care by learning seven ways to find more “me” time. On days when you’re feeling stressed, try these five ten-minute pick-me-ups.

18-29: Too hot to handle (high burnout risk)

Your stress level is probably sky-high. You may already be experiencing symptoms of anxiety, depression, compromised immunity, and physical exhaustion that can lead to or complicate chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, and chronic depression. It’s critical that you take steps immediately to lower your stress level, ideally through a combination of better self-care, a shared workload, and outlets for your complicated emotions, including talk therapy and support groups.

What to do:

In addition to the suggestions in the sections above, learn the five real reasons you’re stressed and how to tame them. Look into respite care options — they’re an important way to give yourself the break you need.

12-17: Toast (already burned out)

It’s a wonder — and a blessing — that you were able to find and take this quiz. You’re running on empty, or is it more like barely running? Although you want to do your best for the person you’re caring for, realize that your own health is at stake — and if you don’t look out for Number One, you won’t be able to help the person or persons in your care.

What to do:

You need immediate help. Learn how to tell the difference between the normal stress of caregiving and depression and consult with someone you trust — a doctor, clergyperson, counselor, or therapist, for counseling — and seek out medical assistance. At minimum, you need a physical checkup. You may also benefit from other therapies or from a break from caregiving that’s as short-term as a vacation or as permanent as a relocation of the person in your care.

One way to prevent or minimize caregiver burnout is by hiring a company such as VEW for Independence to provide respite and in home care assistance. A care provider can provide assistance on an hourly or even daily basis to allow oneself a much needed vacation or just a helping hand. Giving yourself or a loved one a break by hiring outside help can be an assuring way to guarantee yourself and your loved one are well taken care of. VEW for Independence offers in home care, respite, transportation assistance, senior moving, liquidation, after surgery assistance, companionship, and more. Click on the link below to read more on the services provided and contact information on the VEW for Independence website.

Works cited: http://whatissolutionsforcaregivers.com/solutions_for_caregivers/_pdf/Stay-Happy-Article.pdf

http://www.caring.com/articles/caregiver-burnout-quiz

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RECOGNIZING & TREATING BED SORES

Pressure or bed sores occur when pressure on the bony parts of the body reduces the blood supply to a particular area. Circulating blood carries nutrients to the cells and carries out waste products. When the blood supply is reduced, the cells are susceptible to damage and eventual death.
People who use wheelchairs or those who must stay in bed due to illness or injury are subject to bed sores. Conditions that affect blood circulation like diabetes and hardening of the arteries make pressure sores more difficult to heal.

Symptoms of Bed Sores

Bed sores may hurt and may make it difficult for your loved one to sit or sleep comfortably.
Damaged skin may turn purple or red and may feel warm to touch.
Bed sores may be visible after a full-body examination of your loved one. You may see bed sores on the heels and hip bones and other bony areas of the body. The base of the spine, the shoulder blades, the knees, and the back of the head may also be affected. Bed sores are usually found on weight-bearing areas of the body, or bony areas of the body such as hips or ankles.

Preventing Bed Sores –The Two-Hour Rule

Bed sores can occur in a very short time on a loved one who is confined to a chair or a bed. If left untreated, the skin can progress from red spots to open wounds. Serious, painful infections may occur.
Bed sores are a serious injury and they need to be properly cared for. If you notice a bed sore on your loved one, please consult your health care professional immediately.
While preventing bed sores may be difficult for someone who is bedridden, there are steps you can take to decrease the risk. The most important step is to avoid prolonged pressure on any one part of the body. Help your loved one move at least every two hours. Avoid putting pressure on existing sores. And use soft pillows to prop your loved one up in bed, under their buttocks while sitting up in bed, or under their knees to elevate their legs a bit.

Other tips include:

Keep Skin Dry

Keeping skin clean and dry may help prevent bed sores and other infections. Use mild soap and apply moisturizer to prevent the skin from becoming dry and irritated. Use a cornstarch-based powder after bathing to help keep areas dry without dehydrating the skin. Examine your loved one’s body every day and look for discolored skin or other signs of sores.

Use Supports to Relieve Pressure

Use pillows and other props to relieve pressure. For example, a pillow under the knees or feet will shift the pressure. A rolled towel may be used to form a bridge under your loved one’s bones or to lift the bed sheets off his feet. Special pillows, mattresses, mattress covers, foam wedges, seat cushions, and other equipment may be available at medical equipment stores. Ask your local pharmacist or other health care professional for ideas on where to locate these types of products.

Sit in a Chair

Sitting up straight, rather than always lying down, may help reduce the pressure of the “sit bones” and allow your loved one to move more easily. Changing positions every two hours (see the “Two-Hour rule” above), if possible, may also help prevent bed sores. Massaging your loved ones back and other weight-bearing areas to stimulate circulation may also help.

Treating Pressure Sores

Bed sores are a serious injury and they need to be properly cared for. If you notice a bed sore on your loved one, please consult your health care professional immediately.
Before treating a bed sore, you should obtain advice from your physician or other health care professional. Do not attempt to diagnose a bed sore yourself unless you are a certified professional. However, some helpful tips for keeping sores clean may be applicable.
Changing the dressings (bandages) and keeping sores clean is important. Ask a health professional to show you how to clean the sore and remove loose material, since changing dressings and removing dead tissue may be painful and requires particular care. Work with your loved one to determine the best time of day for both of you to change the dressing. If it is too painful, ask the doctor if your loved one can take a pain reliever 30 minutes before you work on the sore.

Infected Pressure Sores

Infected sores heal slowly and the infection can spread to other parts of the body.
Fever or chills, mental confusion, difficulty concentrating, rapid heartbeat, and general weakness are signs that an infection may have spread. Check for signs of infection each day.

More specific signs of infection include the following:

• Yellow or green pus
• Odor emanating from the sore
• Redness, or warmth around the sore
• Swelling or tenderness around the area

If you notice any of these symptoms, contact your physician immediately.

Article by: Elizabeth Eby

Her Biography

Elizabeth Eby is the admissions coordinator at Friendship Terrace Retirement Community in Washington, D.C.
She works with seniors while they are shopping for retirement housing and then after they move in. “I enjoy working with people, hearing their stories and watching, seeing who will adapt to retirement living and how they do it.”
Ms. Eby studied painting at Washington University in St. Louis, and at Roosevelt University in Chicago. Earlier in her career, she taught art in D.C. elementary schools. Ms. Eby draws on her experience at Friendship Terrace and as caregiver to her parents and then to her husband, who died following several years of paralysis caused by a neurological condition.
“My husband’s experience opened my eyes to the roles a family plays in caring for a loved one. My children were the true caregivers, and I supported them.”

Find this article and more at: http://www.strengthforcaring.com/daily-care/bathing-and-skincare-skin-conditions/recognizing-and-treating-bed-sores/

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Check Your Medicines: Tips for Using Medicines Safely

Use this checklist to help avoid medication errors. Simple checks could save your life!

Bring a list or a bag with all your medicines when you go to your doctor’s office, the pharmacy, or the hospital.

Include all prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements that you use. If your doctor prescribes a new medicine, ask if it is safe to use with your other medicines. Remind your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to any medicines.

Ask questions about your medicines.

Ask questions and make sure you understand the answers. Choose a pharmacist and doctor you feel comfortable talking with about your health and medicines. Take a relative or friend with you to ask questions and remind you about the answers later. Write down the answers.

Make sure your medicine is what the doctor ordered.

Does the medicine seem different than what your doctor wrote on the prescription or look different than what you expected? Does a refill look like it is a different shape, color, or size than what you were given before? If something seems wrong, ask the pharmacist to double check it. Most errors are first found by patients.

Ask how to use the medicine correctly.

Read the directions on the label and other information you get with your medicine. Have the pharmacist or doctor explain anything you do not understand. Are there other medicines, foods, or activities (such as driving, drinking alcohol, or using tobacco) that you should avoid while using the medicine? Ask if you need lab tests to check how the medicine is working or to make sure it doesn’t cause harmful side effects.

Ask about possible side effects.

Side effects can occur with many medicines. Ask your doctor or pharmacist what side effects to expect and which ones are serious. Some side effects may bother you but will get better after you have been using the medicine for a while. Call your doctor right away if you have a serious side effect or if a side effect does not get better. A change in the medicine or the dose may be needed.

Simple checks could save your life!

For more information, visit: http://www.ahrq.gov/consumer/ and http://www.fda.gov/usemedicinesafely/.

Check Your Medicines: Tips for Taking Medicines Safely

A DVD on this topic, combined with Next Steps after Your Diagnosis: Finding Information and Support, is available on DVD. The combined DVD, AHRQ Publication Number 07-M025-DVD, includes these two programs:

Check Your Medicines: Tips for Taking Medicines Safely: This short DVD provides patients with five simple steps for taking their medications safely and correctly, thus avoiding medication errors. Experts featured include, Carolyn Clancy,M.D., Robert Muscalus, M.D., Gregg Meyer, and David Bates, M.D.

Next Steps After Your Diagnosis: Finding Information and Support : DVD features information from AHRQ to help patients who have been diagnosed with an illness to learn more about their condition and treatment options. It aims to help patients not only find information and resources but deal with the various physical and emotional aspects of a diagnosis. The short program provides individuals with important questions they should ask their doctor when they receive a diagnosis, and information to help them understand their disease or condition, how it might be treated, and what they need to know before making treatment decisions.

Experts featured include, Carolyn Clancy, M.D., Gregg Meyer, M.D. and Christine Kovner, M.D.
Contact the AHRQ Clearinghouse for your free copy of the combined DVD by sending an e-mail to ahrqpubs@ahrq.hhs.gov requesting AHRQ Publication Number 07-M025-DVD.

AHRQ Publication No. 10-M052-C
(Replaces AHRQ Publication No. 08-M044-A)
Current as of September 2010

Check Your Medicines: Tips for Using Medicines Safely. AHRQ Pub. No. 10-M052-C, September 2010. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/consumer/checkmeds.htm

________________________________________

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Five Steps to Ensure a Health Crisis Doesn’t Mean Financial Ruin

(ARA) – A serious long-term illness or disability can have a devastating, often irreversible, affect on a family’s financial well-being. In fact, health care expenses are among the most common cause of bankruptcies, according to findings published in the “American Journal of Medicine” last year.

Most people are not financially prepared to have their employment interrupted, even briefly. For example, studies find more than 60 percent of workers live paycheck to paycheck. The U.S. Department of Commerce reports that the personal savings rate in March was just 2.7 percent of after-tax income.

So, what can you do to ease the financial risks if you are one of the millions who must stop working each year because of a serious health condition?

“First, have hope, because there are things you can do to take control,” says Paul Gada, personal finance director for the Allsup Disability Life Planning Center. Allsup is a nationwide provider of Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) representation and Medicare plan selection services.

According to Gada, seeking help is essential. “Many people are afraid and overwhelmed. Asking for help is a sign of strength and being your own best advocate can help you feel more in control.”

Among the first steps people with serious health conditions or their caregivers should take quickly are:

Create a financial plan.

The plan should focus on establishing a budget and making certain you are spending down your assets in the least harmful way. Generally, this means using your savings or other resources before withdrawing from retirement accounts that could trigger a penalty or using high interest-rate credit, which could have you paying off interest for years.

Unfortunately, approximately 15 percent of people awaiting SSDI report raiding their retirement savings. Additionally, 17 percent are relying on their credit cards and 7 percent on home equity lines of credit to meet financial needs until they receive their SSDI benefits, according to the Allsup Disability Finance online poll. The poll was conducted online this spring with 138 respondents.

Contact your mortgage company or landlord.

As part of this, identify housing assistance programs. For example, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has programs to assist with mortgage modifications, as well as rental assistance that can lower housing costs drastically. However, there are waiting lists, so it’s important to sign up as soon as possible.

“People are often reluctant to reach out to their mortgage company or their landlord, they start missing payments, and the foreclosure or eviction process starts before they finally explain the situation,” says Gada. “By that time, it may be too late.”

Seek assistance with utilities, food and other necessities.

Conserve your resources by finding assistance to help you cope. Hundreds of federal, local and private resources are available in most communities. These can range from neighborhood food pantries to federally funded programs, such as Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Local phone companies provide reduced-rate support for home phone service. Associations such as the American Cancer Society and the National Family Caregiver Association also offer guidance.

Many more people indicate they are considering assistance than are actually securing this assistance, according to an Allsup poll. They may not understand how to apply or they may not meet the income thresholds initially, but could later on as they spend down their assets.

“It can be overwhelming and people too often give up,” explains Gada, adding that Allsup offers links to many of these resources from its website.

Secure health care coverage.

Continuing medical treatment is vital. Among the options are COBRA through your former employer, a spouse’s plan or other private coverage, such as through the health insurance exchanges being established as part of the health care legislation enacted earlier this year. Compare plans closely to make sure you are getting the coverage needed and that you understand the costs. Additionally, if you must take expensive prescription drugs, check if the pharmaceutical company offers a prescription-drug assistance program.

Pursue income sources, including SSDI.

If you have paid into the Social Security Disability Insurance program, you may be eligible for benefits. If you are eligible, it’s essential to apply quickly as it can take up to two years or more to be approved. Gada advises seeking help with your SSDI application to speed the process. For example, people with disabilities represented by Allsup are significantly more likely to receive SSDI benefits at the initial level.

“It’s heartbreaking to hear of people with serious illnesses and disabilities unable to work and struggling month after month to pay for food or medical costs until they’re financially wiped out,” says Gada. “It shouldn’t be that way. There are steps people can take, but they need to ask for help and know how to get it.”

More information on financial assistance is available at www.Allsup.com or (800) 279-4357.

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6 Tips for Buying Safe Toys

Tis the season when millions of parents swarm toy stores, looking for the latest game or gizmo to give to the little ones they love. Entertaining and educational often top a parent’s wish list, but safe should be No. 1. About 230,000 toy-related injuries are treated in hospital emergency rooms every year, according to the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC).
Here are some shopping tips:

Pay attention to the age on the box.

There’s a reason Barbie accessories, some Lego sets and Hungry, Hungry Hippos are not recommended for children under 3. They contain small parts that kids like to stick in their mouths, putting them at high risk for choking. Watch out for toys with button-size batteries and small magnets as well.

Test out noisemakers.

Some musical instruments, toy sirens or squeaky playthings emit 90 decibels of sound — that’s as loud as a lawn mower. Hold it close to your ear (as many kids do), and it’s more like 120 dB, enough to hurt your hearing. Listen to the toy in the store; if it’s too loud for you, find something quieter.

Pass on “weapons.”

Toy guns, slingshots or anything that flies or shoots can lead to serious eye injuries, even blindness. Skip these types of toys for younger kids; for older ones, make sure arrows or darts, for example, have soft cork tips, rubber suction cups or other protective points.

Measure strings and straps.

Cords longer than 7 inches can be a strangulation hazard.

Be sure to get ride-on protection.

Scooters, skateboards and other riding toys are associated with more injuries than any other toy category. Proper-fitting helmets and pads are a must.

Skip the antiques.

Though recent federal safety rules impose stricter regulations on lead content in toys, collectibles and older hand-me-downs, as well as some imported toys, can put kids at risk for lead exposure.

Check for recalls.

The CPSC keeps an updated list of toy recalls; visit cpsc.gov.

www.usaweekend.com DECEMBER 12, 2010

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Increase your chances for having a healthy heart

Fact:

Making a few lifestyle changes can prevent heart disease, and yet it remains the No. 1 killer in the United States. The American Heart Association wants to improve the cardiovascular health of all Americans by 20% as well as reduce heart-related deaths and stroke by 20% — all by 2020. It’s possible, they say, if adults don’t smoke, maintain a healthy weight, eat right, work out and keep cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar in check.

New research shows adopting those strategies can cut your risk of premature death in half.

Start with these simple steps:

Eat more fruits and vegetables.

An analysis of studies showed that eating more than five servings of fruits and vegetables every day can lower heart disease risk by 20% compared with eating fewer than three a day.

Also important:

Include three or more daily servings of whole grains in your diet and eat at least two servings of fish a week.

Cut down on sugary drinks.

A 12-ounce glass of cranberry juice cocktail contains 200 calories and 12 teaspoons of sugar; the same amount of soda has 150 calories and 10 teaspoons of sugar. No surprise that studies show overconsumption of such beverages is linked to higher body weight; it also has led to more diabetes and heart disease over the past decade.

Lift weights.

It can help reduce blood pressure as much as 20%, which is as good or better than taking medication, a recent study at Appalachian State University shows. Resistance training also leads to a longer-lasting decrease in blood pressure than aerobic exercise. That’s not to say you should skip cardio workouts: Walking for 15 minutes twice a day can raise levels of “good” HDL cholesterol, lower “bad” LDL cholesterol and help manage your weight.

FEBRUARY 27, 2011, www.usaweekend.com, The Doctors

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Heart attack: Know the signs

You’re a little nauseated and lightheaded. Your back hurts. What do you think? You’re coming down with something, what you ate for breakfast didn’t settle, you carried too much laundry up the stairs? All plausible explanations. Here’s another: You’re having a heart attack.

In an American Heart Association survey, only about half of women were aware of certain warning signs; of others, even less. A heart attack occurs when a blockage stops blood flow (and oxygen) to your heart. Some cases are what you picture: intense chest pain, difficulty breathing. But most heart attacks start much less dramatically, with mild pain or discomfort. Some signs:

Chest pain.

It’s uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain in the center of your chest that lasts more than a few minutes or goes away and comes back. If you have chest pain, especially with another of these symptoms, don’t wait more than five minutes to call 911.

Upper-body discomfort.

It can be in one or both arms, your back, neck, jaw or stomach.

Shortness of breath.

This can be with or without chest pain.

Other signs.

Breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.

FIRST-AID UPDATE:

Heart attack victims may go into cardiac arrest and require cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Given immediately, CPR can double or triple a person’s chance of survival.

The American Heart Association now recommends chest compressions only for most adults and skipping the mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Studies show it’s just as effective. Learn how to do it at handsonlycpr.org.

THE DOCTORS • FEBRUARY 20, 2011 www.usaweekend.com

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Household hints from the good old days

Yearning to get back to basics in these fast-moving, high-tech times? The editors of Yankee Magazine have culled their cache of vintage books and magazines for the best advice from the good old days. The result? 1,001 Old-Time Household Hints, which cover housecleaning, cooking, gardening, home repair, pets and body care, including:

Make your garden happy.

The editors recommend growing the perennial herb comfrey and adding it to your compost mix. Comfrey has loads of fertilizer-friendly nutrients that will benefit your garden.

Highlight hair naturally.

A magazine from 1894 suggests women wash their hair with baking soda to bring out the natural lighter tones. Add about a teaspoon of baking soda to your shampoo, massage it into your hair and rinse as usual.

Give your gingerbread zing.

Advice from a 1930 cookbook (and it works even if you’re using a gingerbread mix): Add a grated orange rind to the batter.

Make a no-moth zone.

When stowing away your sweaters for the season, sprinkle whole cloves over them. Cloves are a good moth repellent, and they will roll right off when you unpack your clothes for next year.

Priscilla Totten • February 13, 2011 www.usaweekend.com

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Look Within Yourself to be a Better Parent

Parents hold high hopes for their children. They want their children to grow into people who can thrive. Harvard psychologist Richard Bromfield, author of How to Unspoil Your Child Fast, offers ways to reassess and adjust your parenting. Among his expert tips:

Prioritize.

If you’re like most loving parents, raising your children well is a high priority. Ask yourself: Does my parenting reflect that priority?

Look into the future.

Imagine your children grown to teens or adults. What do you want their lives to look like? What qualities and traits do you believe will help them get to that place?

Look in the mirror.


Albert Schweitzer said it best: “Adults teach children in three important ways: the first is by example, the second is by example, the third is by example.” What kind of model do you set?

Think and plan.


No endeavor is more important than raising children, yet many parents simply try to get through it. Set aside time to think and plan the big and little ways to reach your parenting goals.

Commit.

Little that is worthwhile comes easy. Give your parenting the conviction, effort and purpose it deserves.

From: USA Weekend Feb. 11-13, 2011

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