Parkinson’s disease is a long-term degenerative disorder of the central nervous system and it is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder after Alzheimer’s disease. Symptoms include tremor, weakness, rigidity, slowness of movement, and unsteadyness and difficulty with walking.
Thinking and behavioural problems may also occur and dementia and increasing paralysis become common in the advanced stages of the disease.
We can help someone cope with a diagnosis of Parkingson’s disease with a combination of interventions depending on the symptoms that present themselves, such as pain relief, psychological and physical support, adapted cutlery, thickened, soft or pureed diet, extending to the management of feeding people using a feeding tube if necessary.
We have made adjustment of the environment within our homes to make moving around as easy as possible, including installation of hand rails, flat floors etc.
We can also offer the input of a 24 hour caring staff team who are enthusiastic and skilled in management of these challenges.
Arthritis is a term often used to mean any disorder that affects joints. There are many types of arthritis- the most common are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, but gout, lupus and fibromyalgia are also well known. Joint pain can also be secondary to some illnesses such as coeliac disease, hepatitis and IBS.
The main symptoms of arthritis are joint pain, stiffness, redness, swelling and heat. Other symptoms include reduced mobility, fatigue, poor sleep, aching muscles and increased risk of depression. Treatment consists of the management of symptoms, and also management of weight loss if required
We help sufferers of arthritis with emotional support, pain relief and aids, such as adapted cutlery for example. Assistance as needed is given with all of the activities of daily life, including eating, drinking, dressing, bathing, reading and going to the toilet, along with help with medication, physio, OT, healthy diet and hydration. One of our main aims is also to help the person maintain as much movement and independence as possible.
Dementia is a broad category of brain diseases that cause a long-term and often gradual decrease in the ability to think and remember that is great enough to affect a person’s daily functioning. Other common symptoms include emotional problems, problems with language, and a decrease in motivation.
The most common type of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease, which makes up 50% to 70% of cases. Other common types include vascular dementia (25%), Lewy body dementia (15%), and frontotemporal dementia. More than one type of dementia may exist in the same person.
There is no known cure for dementia, however there are many measures that can improve the quality of life of people with dementia. Symptoms vary and can include balance problems, speech and language difficulty, trouble eating or swallowing, memory distortions (believing that a memory has already happened when it has not, thinking an old memory is a new one, combining two memories, or confusing the people in a memory), wandering or restlessness, perception and visual problems, agitation, depression, anxiety, repetition and changes in sleep or appetite.
To date there is unfortunately no cure for dementia, and treatment consists of managing symptoms as they arise. All of our staff have specialised training in the management dementia type illnesses, and many of our staff love the speciality of caring for dementia sufferers. Interventions include a high level of emotional support, assistance with personal cares and all activities of daily life, 24-hour supervision and a locked door policy where necessary to ensure personal safety. We also offer specially adapted diets, including pureed diets, thickened liquids, and assistance with eating and drinking.
Kidney disease and kidney failure is a medical condition in which the kidneys no longer work properly. Kidneys filter waste products from the blood. When kidneys fail to filter properly, toxins build up in the blood and the body.
Symptoms may include leg swelling, shortness of breath, feeling tired, vomiting, loss of appetite or a bad taste in the mouth, itching and confusion.
Our staff team can offer help and support with the symptoms of all of the above diseases as they arise and also with all of the daily activities of life, including assistance with medication, good diet and physical and emotional support. We can also help with the administration of oxygen and intervention with pain relief.
Palliative care is specialized care for people with life-limiting illnesses. It focuses on providing relief from the symptoms, pain, physical stress, and mental stress of a terminal disease. The goal is to improve quality of life for both the person and their family where a condition is not able to be cured.
Palliative care is provided by a team of people consisting of care staff, physicians, nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapists and other health professionals who work together to offer medication, symptom control, emotional and physical support and physical comfort.
Symptoms can be very varied but may include pain, anxiety, nausea, depression, fatigue, drowsiness, and poor appetite, sometimes with the addition of shortness of breath. We will help a person to plan out and then deliver their wishes and goals including surrogate decision making, and wishes for or against CPR.
Unfortunately it is common for older people to have more than one thing wrong with them, for example, a person suffering from Parkinson’s disease may also have arthritis. A person with dementia may also have cancer. It can take a high level of skill to determine how to treat such people to reach an acceptable outcome.
Our staff team is a 24 hour team that are enthusiastic, well trained and good at problem solving whilst being keen to fulfil our residents’ wishes as they wish them to be. With two of our company directors being qualified nurses we are ready and able to accept the challenge of caring for people with complex conditions.
Help with taking medication can be an important part of caring for an older person, especially a person suffering from complex or debilitating illness. Continuous assessment of which medication is required, how well it is working and reduction of medication where appropriate is offered by our well trained and experienced staff team, along with intervention of other members of the multi-disciplinary team where required.
Osteoporosis is an age-related disease of bone that has no symptoms in itself however it leads to an increased risk of fracture. In serious cases a fracture can occur spontaneously, even without any injury happening to the person. If a fracture occurs in the spine or hip, the consequences can be great for the sufferer. The spine may also collapse, causing pain and possible compression of the spinal cord.
Treatment consists of fall prevention which we achieve by supervision, adjustment of the environment by removal of trip hazards, a buzzer system throughout the home with signage encouraging all residents to ‘call, don’t fall’, good lighting and help with use of aids such as walking frames etc. We provide a good well balanced diet and encourage people to take exercise which can help prevent further bone loss once a diagnoses of osteoporosis has been made. Help is offered with taking any medication that may be prescribed.
Stroke is a medical condition in which poor blood flow to the brain results in the death of part of the brain and in 2015, stroke was the second most frequent cause of death after coronary artery disease. It’s also known as CVA (Cerebro vascular accident) or more recently ‘brain attack’
There are two main types of stroke: ischaemic, due to lack of blood flow, and hemorrhagic, due to bleeding into the brain or into the space between the brain’s membranes. Both types of stroke result in part of the brain not functioning properly. The symptoms depend on which area of the brain has been affected and the more extensive the area of the brain affected, the more functions that are likely to be lost.
Symptoms may include an inability to move or feel on one side of the body, inability to balance, altered smell, taste, hearing, or vision problems understanding or speaking, feeling like the world is spinning or loss of vision to one side. The sufferer may be unable to swallow properly or to read and write, and may have lack of insight into their condition or be left with cognitive impairment and/or depression. The sufferer may also laugh or cry for no reason or inappropriately or be left with dementia or loss of memory
To date there is unfortunately little in the way of treatment for a stroke, the focus being on how it is managed. The care that we are able to offer includes emotional support, help with taking medication, pain management, skin care, including prevention of pressure sores, feeding, hydration, assistance with rehabilitation/OT/speech therapy/physio, help with aids such as wheelchairs, walking frames and special cutlery. Provision of a tasty and nutritious specialised modified diet with or without use of thickeners as prescribed and working with the SALT team as necessary. We can help with all of the person’s activities of daily life, including eating, drinking, dressing, bathing, reading, going to the toilet and management of incontinence.
Pressure sores, also known as pressure ulcers, pressure injuries, bedsores, and decubitus ulcers, are localized damage to the skin and/or underlying tissue that usually occur over a bony prominence as a result of pressure, or pressure in combination with shear and/or friction. The most common sites are the sacrum, coccyx, heels or the hips, but other sites such as the elbows, knees, ankles, back of shoulders, ears or the back of the head can be affected. Pressure ulcers most commonly develop in individuals who are not moving about, such as those being bedridden or confined to a wheelchair.
The best way to deal with pressure sores is to prevent them happening in the first instance. Our staff give careful specialised handling and have specialised training in detection of the effects of pressure on the skin before it progresses to the stage of a pressure sore. We can help people who are already suffering with a pressure ulcer by working with the multi disciplinary team, offering good nutrition, especially adequate protein intake, keeping skin clean and dry to help skin to heal and to prevent infection, help with dressings as prescribed by the tissue viability services, re-positioning (sometimes as often as every half hour through both the day and the night) and use of special equipment.
Respiratory disease is a medical term that includes conditions of the upper respiratory tract, trachea, and all the organs of the chest. Respiratory diseases range from mild and self-limiting, such as the common cold, to life-threatening conditions such as bacterial pneumonia, pulmonary embolism, acute asthma and lung cancer.
Chronic respiratory diseases are diseases of the airways and other structures of the chest. Some of the most common are asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and acute respiratory distress syndrome. Chronic respiratory diseases are not curable, however various forms of treatment that help dilate major air passages and improve shortness of breath can help control symptoms and increase the quality of a person’s life.
Symptoms can vary depending on which illness is affecting the person but can include wheezing, shortness of breath, cough, pain, anxiety, weight loss and difficulty with managing all of the daily activities of life.
Treatment includes help with finding the most effective medication or combination of medication and help with taking medication such as oxygen, nebulisers and inhalers. Assistance is offered as needed with the activities of daily life, help with diet (calorie control and provision of an ‘easy to eat’ diet if needed) and help with posture to help breathing
Heart, or cardiovascular disease is a class of diseases that involve the heart or blood vessels and includes angina and myocardial infarction (commonly known as a heart attack). Heart failure, often referred to as congestive heart failure, occurs when the heart is unable to pump sufficiently to maintain blood flow to meet the body’s needs. Heart failure is not the same as myocardial infarction (in which part of the heart muscle dies) or cardiac arrest (in which blood flow stops altogether)
Heart failure signs and symptoms commonly include chest pain, shortness of breath, cough, excessive tiredness, and leg swelling.
The liver is a vital organ and supports almost every other organ in the body. It removes toxins, synthesizes proteins, and produces chemicals necessary for digestion, one of which is bile, which is used for breaking down fat in the diet. Its other roles include the decomposition of red blood cells and the production of hormones and also heat. Liver failure may be caused by many things, two well known causes being cirrhosis or hepatitis.
Symptoms can include fatigue, fever, nausea, loss of appetite, jaundice and abdominal discomfort.
Pain is defined as a symptom of an underlying condition, however sometimes pain arises in the absence of any detectable damage or disease. Pain is the most common reason for people to go to their GP and it can interfere with a person’s quality of life, sometimes to a huge degree. We believe that the relief of pain is a basic human right.
The first challenge in pain management can be determining what hurts and why, which can be tricky if the person is suffering from dementia or has had a stroke which may make communication difficult. Pain can be relieved by medication, distraction, positioning, warmth or cold and often relieved by reassurance and the management of worry and anxiety.
We have a well trained and sympathetic staff team, along with pain assessment tools, access to the multi-disciplinary team, medication and pain relieving devices and support from the hospice when required.
Staff are trained and experienced in recognising pain in people who cannot speak or who are suffering from dementia type illnesses. Such signs can be subtle, such as aggression, being withdrawn or a change in behaviour or facial expression.
Frailty is a condition associated with ageing, and also with some diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, kidney problems and other diseases in which inflammation is prominent.
Symptoms can include loss of muscle, weakness, slowing down, lack of energy or even total exhaustion, lower levels of activity, and unintended weight loss.
Frailty decreases a person’s natural resilience and increases the risk of falls and susceptibility to other illnesses and can be a sign that a person is approaching the end of their life.
If a person is diagnosed as frail, using one of our assessment tools, it enables us to plan interventions, including symptom control and preparation for end of life care.
Diabetes is a group of metabolic disorders in which the body is unable to maintain the correct level of blood sugar. Diabetes is a chronic disease and may be treated with medications, one of which may be insulin.
Diabetes needs careful management because if it is left uncontrolled it can lead to serious side effects which can include collapse or long term side effects such as blindness, coronary artery disease, kidney damage and diabetes related foot problems such as ulcers which can be difficult to treat.
The way that we manage diabetes is to help the person to eat a healthy diet, lose weight if needed, take exercise, measure their blood sugar levels, take medication if prescribed and take good care of their skin, especially on their feet. Our well trained and experienced staff will be aware if a person’s diabetes is becoming unstable and we will intervene quickly and appropriately to help them to manage their illness.