High cholesterol is one of those things that easily sneak up on you. There’s just something about human nature that makes us want to bury our heads in the sand rather than receive bad news – as if it can’t hurt us if we don’t know about it.
When it comes to our health, a large part of the problem is the lack of information available, and much of the information we do have access to is conflicting. But knowledge is power, so here are 8 things you need to know about cholesterol to help you and any loved ones you may be caring for.
1) There are no symptoms that come along with having high cholesterol until it’s too late, which is why it’s vital to get your levels checked regularly.
2) When you do get your cholesterol checked, make sure you get your HDL (high-density lipoprotein) and LDL (low-density lipoprotein) levels measured, not just your total cholesterol, which doesn’t tell you much of anything. Your cholesterol numbers might be slightly higher than the average, but if it’s mostly HDL and low LDL, you have nothing to worry about. On the other hand, if your overall cholesterol is low, but it’s mostly LDL with low levels of HDL, that’s something you should be concerned about. Also keep an eye on your triglyceride numbers, which you want to be lowest of all.
3) The body makes most of its own cholesterol – only about ¼ of the cholesterol in our body comes from the food we eat. Because of the specific form cholesterol takes in most of our foods, most of it doesn’t get absorbed, so you don’t actually need to worry about foods that are high in cholesterol, especially since they are often among the most nutritious foods available to us.
4) That said, genetics do play a factor. Some people are genetically predisposed to make more cholesterol than others, and in some cases, the ratio of HDL to LDL might be less than favorable. Diet and exercise both play a role, but it’s always a good idea to check your family history and be sure to remain vigilant about getting your levels checked.
5) While we tend to focus on high cholesterol, it’s important to remember that there is such a thing as cholesterol levels that are too low. Cholesterol is vital to maintaining our health – it helps carry nutrients around the body and HDL actually helps keep our arteries clean. So don’t get too focused on getting your cholesterol as low as possible – if it’s in the healthy range and you have a good ration of HDL to LDL, you’re fine and you don’t need to worry about it.
6) Cholesterol levels tend to rise as we age and women in particular tend to experience higher triglyceride levels after menopause, so be on the lookout for all of those warning signs.
7) The National Cholesterol Education Program recommends adults over 20 get their cholesterol levels checked every 5 years, but those who are at risk (especially people over the age of 45) might need to get their levels checked more frequently.
8) High blood pressure and smoking are also both associated with higher levels of cholesterol, so if you have a loved one who smokes and you know they have high blood pressure, try to be extra vigilant about making sure they get their cholesterol checked regularly and keep their diet and exercise regimen as healthy as possible.
Maintaining healthy cholesterol levels is not only good for helping to prevent heart attacks and stroke, but also dementia and a whole host of other potential health problems. It’s just one more reason to educate yourself on the facts of cholesterol so you can protect yourself and those you are caring for.
At Stillwater Senior Living, we do everything we can to answer the questions of our seniors in our community, as well as help them manage their health. If we do not have the answer, we will find someone that does.
CONTACT US TODAY for more information and a tour of our beautiful state-of-the-art community.
Making the choice to put a loved one into an assisted living facility can be one of the most difficult choices we have to make as adults. It can be a painful process that’s often met with resistance from those who are most in need of assistance with day-to-day chores and activities, but you must remain firm. In order to do that, it helps to know for sure that it really is time for your loved one to go to an assisted living facility.
You’re Afraid To Leave Them Alone
Even the most capable of us have times when we forget to turn off the oven or unplug the iron, but if it happens regularly, it might be time to consider an assisted living facility. Many people can continue taking care of themselves well into their golden years, but if your loved one appears to be slipping in even the most basic aspects of self-care, you should probably start looking for an assisted living facility for them.
Changes in Housekeeping
Failing to maintain their normal level of cleanliness around the house and/or hoarding can both be signs that their ability to care for themselves is declining and they need help.
The Level Of Care They Need Continues To Rise
Many people try to take care of their senior friends and family members themselves by having them live with them. This can be a great way to make sure they remain an active part of the family, but if the amount of care they need rises too high, it can become a problem for all of you. There’s only so much friends and family can do, and when the level of care needed by the senior citizen starts to rise above and beyond what you can provide, it’s time to start looking for professional help.
Wandering can be one of the earliest signs of cognitive decline if your loved one tries to go to a store that no longer exists or insists on shopping at odd hours. When that starts to happen, their confusion could potentially put them in dangerous situations. You can do your best to keep an eye on them, but you cannot possibly watch them 24/7. What you’ll need instead is an assisted living facility with the resources necessary to care for your loved one and make sure they don’t wander off.
Paranoia can take all sorts of forms, from hiding money in various places around the house to outright accusing friends and family members of trying to harm or trick them. It’s a common sign of aging, as well as cognitive decline from a variety of sources (Alzheimer’s, stroke, etc.). It can be especially difficult to convince a paranoid senior to move into an assisted living facility, but it’s more necessary than ever. Paranoid individuals can often end up hurting themselves by accident and no one wants to take that risk with their loved ones.
Here at Stillwater Senior Living, we treat our residents like family. Our apartments include studio, one bedroom, and two bedroom suites. They are designed with security features, maximum accessibility, and include walk-out patois with a full range of amenities for the entire family.
CONTACT US today for more information and a tour of our beautiful state-of-the-art community.
What’s the most important factor in a business? Location, location, location. We’ve all heard it, but how much does it play a role when choosing the right assisted living facility for you or a loved one?
As important as location is, it remains just one factor to consider, although it usually has an impact on other considerations, such as price. Below are some reasons seniors might choose to live somewhere other than their top choice city:
1) There’s no adequate assisted living facility in their hometown.
Like most of us, seniors generally want to stay in their communities, whenever possible. It’s where all their friends are and often they’ve spent years putting down roots in that neighborhood. But if it’s a small, rural town, there might not be an assisted living facility nearby, or if there is one, it’s less likely to have all the amenities they need. In that case, they might be better off moving to a nearby city with a better-equipped assisted living facility.
2) Proximity to medical facilities.
Assisted living facilities and nursing homes can provide significant medical care to their residents, but they have their limitations. While doctors may visit their patients in assisted living facilities, most facilities don’t have a doctor in the building 24/7, and as we age, we’re more likely to need professional medical treatment. Those with chronic conditions are especially likely to need to stay close to a medical facility, which means even an affordable assisted living facility in their home town might not be the right choice if it’s too far from the nearest hospital.
3) Proximity to loved ones.
Assisted living facilities can provide seniors with everything they need on a day-to-day basis, but nothing can replace the care and attention of close friends and family. Even if the senior’s children or grandchildren can’t take care of them in their home full time, just having them nearby to be available for visits and check-ins can mean a lot. Social isolation is one of the biggest challenges seniors face, but that can be abated by having someone nearby who cares for them and is readily available.
While some seniors might want to stay close to home, others are just as likely to want to move away, depending on the circumstances. If they live in the Midwest, for example, they might want to relocate to a warmer climate. Enough seniors choose to do this that seeing all their friends move south might create an incentive for them to follow. That way they’ll have a ready-made community when they get down there, and as a bonus, warmer climates have been known to help ease chronic conditions like arthritis, in which case their doctor might even recommend the relocation.
At Stillwater Senior Living, we do everything we can to accommodate the needs of our seniors in our community. We are conveniently located to a variety of other medical providers, and will help our seniors stay in touch with their family in any way that we can if their family lives far away.
CONTACT US TODAY for more information and a tour of our beautiful state-of-the-art community.