Five Ways to Help Your Loved One with Alzheimer’s

Watching someone endure the ravages of Alzheimer’s disease is difficult. It is called “the long goodbye,” because it lingers and lingers, and we must watch as our loved ones slip deeper away. Even though they are physically in front of us, they are gone. They are not the same people we knew.

There are several ways to help someone with Alzheimer’s that will make life a little easier for both of you.

First, don’t argue with them. If they insist the sky is pink, you should agree and remark that it is a lovely shade of pink at that.


Five Steps to Preparing for your Colonoscopy

best-nursing-ColonoscopyThe AMA recommends colonoscopies for everyone beginning at age 50, and earlier if you are at a high risk or have symptoms. Colonoscopies should be repeated every 10 years unless there are polyps, cancer, or other irregularities found during your procedure. Your doctor will discuss the finding with you and inform you how long to wait before your next colonoscopy.

During the colonoscopy, your doctor will look at the entire rectum and colon. To do this, your intestines need to be clean so you must follow a prep, which is designed to eliminate everything from your bowels.There are several different preps for this procedure; each doctor has his/her own preferences. No matter which prep you both decide to follow, here are some tips to make it easier.


Five Signs You Might Have Fibromyalgia

best-nursing-FibromyalgiaFibromyalgia is an autoimmune disease. When you go to your doctor with your symptoms, he or she will undoubtedly draw blood for an ANA (AntiNuclear Antibodies) test, which is the usual test performed for autoimmune disease.

Fibromyalgia patients experience several symptoms. The five most common signs of fibromyalgia are:

1 - Confusion, which is often called “Fibro Fog.” Patients with Fibro Fog have a hard time concentrating, thinking straight, and understanding simple things.
2 - Depression and Anxiety. These often go hand in hand. When someone has the debilitating pain and discomfort of fibromyalgia, it’s easy to slip into depression and experience anxiety even over the littlest things. Sometimes patients cannot make a simple decision.


Five Signs You May Have Pancreatitis

best-nursing-PancreatisPancreatitis is a painful condition. According to WebMD, “In most cases, acute pancreatitis is caused by gallstone or heavy alcohol use. Other causes include medications, infections, trauma, metabolic disorders, and surgery. In up to 30% of people with acute pancreatitis, the cause is unknown.”

Many things can cause pancreatitis. Mine was caused by a prescribed medicine. Medicines are notorious for causing pancreatitis. I ended up in the ER after vomiting for 8 straight hours with no end in sight. Besides the vomiting, I felt as though Muhammad Ali had used my stomach as a punching bag.  Ad after ad on TV lists side effects of medications, and if you listen carefully plenty of them list stomach pain, nausea and vomiting, and pancreatitis. I tried a new prescription for a rheumatology ailment. As my gastroenterologist explained to me, “Rheumatology and Gastroenterology often butt heads.” Just being on this medication for one week landed me in the ER with pancreatitis.


Healthy living: Foods to keep your mind sharp

bestnursing-blog-amyocookMy grandma, Donna White, is an 86-year-old with a steel will and a sharp mind. A teacher for 30 years, she is highly educated and keeps her mind in top shape. She can tell you the events of any given day in the past 50 years, and her trivia skills rival that of Ken Jennings.
Her secret? Exercise, sleep and brain food.
Whether you are on the Paleo Diet or live a vegan lifestyle, these three foods from Mother Nature are appropriate for any diet and can help keep your mind active and alert.
One of the major causes of aging is … wait for it … inflammation. Inflammation occurs when unattached oxygen molecules, also called free radicals, attack your cells. Because your brain uses so much oxygen – 20 percent of your body’s total oxygen supply – it is easily damaged by these maverick molecules.
Blueberries take the fighting power out of these radicals and render them harmless because they are rich in antioxidants (anti-oxygen molecules).