It’s tempting to do DIY home renovations on a budget. 

But the question is, would you save money by doing things on your own? Or would it be better to hire a contractor in the long run? 

That’s the question we will answer today. 

So let’s go! 

Benefits of renovating your home for aging in place 

Over the last several years, nearly 90% of seniors wish to age in their own homes.

And it’s not even surprising. 

It’s deeply personal for seniors to stay in their own space—tied with meaningful memories.

It’s more comfortable. And it allows them to have autonomy and feel more independent compared to moving into facilities.

Instead of families transferring their loved ones to senior assisted living facilities, they can go for more affordable home renovation.

Read more about the challenges seniors face with aging in place.

But anyway we look at it, we must consider how we can make the home accessible for our aging loved ones. 

DIY Home renovations

Home renovation is a great option. But there are also some things we should consider.

A home renovation means turning an older home into a construction zone that can be overwhelming.

They might take longer than planned. And unexpected changes to the budget and even delays to your plans can be stressful.

And depending on the age of the house, it can also harbor some toxins. 

Lead, asbestos, and radon are some of the toxic materials often found in old homes. These can be health hazards, especially if they’re not correctly addressed.

So, having them professionally tested and removed can protect our seniors from suffering respiratory side effects.

Planning to have an aging-in-place renovation means choosing which areas to prioritize.

And for this one, an essential starting point is the bathroom. 

This is the primary sources of accidents such as falls and slips, especially in the shower area.  

Focusing on the kitchen area is also essential, as it can be one of the most dangerous places at home. 

Fire, burn injuries, and use of defective heating equipment are just some hazards our seniors face. As their caregivers, it’s important to check up on these things.

Check out some age-in-place guidelines here.

The bedroom is another area we should consider. 

Although it may be the highest of our priorities, it can also be a source of accidents. 

Seniors move around the bedroom and do many tasks, like getting ready for the day. 

At times, navigate in the dark may be necessary, which can be difficult, especially if there’s not enough clear space for them to walk around.

Read more about the guide to aging place here.

DIY home renovation on a budget: yea or nay?

One of the most significant decisions we make when renovating a home is whether to DIY or hire professionals.

The question that we always ask is: How much can we actually do?

Of course, planning the perfect aging-in-place home for our loved ones can be quite a handful. And it’s easy for the cost to stack up. 

Good thing home remodeling doesn’t have to involve massive renovation. 

Even the most minor changes can improve a loved one’s safety. And if you’re on a budget, then DIY home renovation is a great choice.

You can refer to endless resources to help DIY home renovation, like watching online how-to videos or reading manuals. 

The general rule is to do the DIY jobs you feel confident about and have the skills to finish your to-do list.

For example, some simple home modifications include swapping knobs for levers on furniture, cabinets, and doors. 

renovations

Lever handles provide more grip and are much easier to operate. It can make it easier for seniors with limited dexterity functions to access items and rooms around the house.

Installing adjustable handheld shower heads and portable shower chairs can make bathing more comfortable and safe for them. 

It lessens their energy expenditure and can even decrease the risk of falls.

Another simple DIY project to note is rearranging the furniture for wider walkways. 

Also, installing non-slip floor coverings and removing tripping hazards like carpeting can reduce risk of falling.

Read more on top remodeling ideas here.

But if you’re planning on complex home modifications, you don’t have to do it alone. Instead, it’s advisable to call in a professional contractor with experience.

Some extensive modifications would require following code standards, including installing handrails, doorway ramps, or automatic push-button doors. 

These are not simple tasks and would take a lot of effort.

In addition, you may have to remodel the entire area, and that’s not something you want to do on your own.

Plus, taking on a fully DIY home renovation can cause injuries in several ways, especially if not done with care. 

So hiring experts with the “know-how” for major renovations would be the best option.

Final Thoughts

DIY home renovation on a budget is a great start to improving our loved one’s safety.

But to have the assurance that the larger jobs are done right, it’s still best to call a professional for help.

That's all for today.

Take care, keep mom safe and have a great day!

Winn

Articles of Interest:

  1. AGE IN PLACE DESIGN GUIDELINES MADE ACHIEVABLE FOR THE ELDERLY
  2. HOW ELDERLY HOME CARE MAKES AGING IN PLACE POSSIBLE FOR SENIORS
  3. 5 SAFETY TIPS IN THE KITCHEN FOR SENIORS AGING IN PLACE

Why do I feel like I'm not good enough? 

Believe it or not, every caregiver must have asked themselves this question. 

In my opinion, caregivers are among the most amazing people. 

It's never easy to attend to people in need. Yet, most of the time, caregivers put their needs last to care for their loved ones. 

However, caregivers also often feel guilty for not doing or being more for their elderly loved ones. 

So today, we'll discuss how you could manage your feelings better. This way, you'll finally stop asking yourself, why do I feel like I'm not good enough?

Dealing with caregiver guilt 

caregiver guilt

We all know that growing old is part of the cycle of life. 

However, most of our concepts about aging and the elderly are influenced by how they are portrayed in the media. 

They're either wise, white-haired folks enjoying their mimosas on retirement or frail, feeble characters lying in bed. 

It is rare to talk about the slow decline of seniors, especially those experiencing neurodegenerative illnesses.

Plus, the fact that most people don't have an ideal relationship with their aging parents doesn't make it better. 

That's why it is a shock when first-time caregivers care for their loved ones. They struggle with emotional roller coasters that cause them to feel burnout. 

If you or a caregiver you know is experiencing caregiver guilt, this is for you. 

Five tips for managing caregiver guilt 

It's never easy to handle caregiver stress. 

While it's true that caregiving has its rewards, it also comes with unique challenges. 

Taking care of the elderly, especially those with chronic illnesses, can take so much from a person. 

The Family Caregiver Alliance shares data about a caregiver's quality of life. 

Most caregivers are aged 18 to 29 and 30 to 40-year-olds. Caregivers working full time are said to suffer poorer health than their non-caregiver counterparts. 

They also have a significant Physical Health Index score of 77.4%, which is 2.6% lower than average. 

So how do you manage caregiver guilt better? Here are some of my best tips. 

Talk to someone you trust

talk to someone you trust

The first step is always to acknowledge what you're feeling. 

It's perfectly fine to feel uneasy at times. You're human, after all. 

But if it comes to the point where your guilt or resentment is getting to you, you need to do something about it. 

Talk to someone you know won't judge you for feeling what you're feeling. It may be your partner, a friend, a healthcare professional, or a fellow caregiver. 

What's important is to get your thoughts out there so you can start analyzing and addressing what you're feeling. 

Journal your thoughts and feelings

journal your thoughts and feelings

If you're not comfortable with talking with someone, try journaling instead. 

There's power in seeing your thoughts on paper. It helps you process your emotions better and also identify behavioral patterns. 

Keeping a journal can help you see the triggers that cause you to respond the way you do. It lets you become aware of your cycles and tendencies. 

When you recognize these patterns, it will help you go back to your center. Awareness lets you be more in control of your emotions and choose how you react. 

Practice self-compassion

self-compassion

Since most caregivers are also empaths, their feelings of compassion are amplified with them. 

Ironically, most caregivers are also too hard on themselves. Most feel like they don't deserve to feel happy while others suffer. 

Psychologists are now using the term 'empathy-fatigue' to describe this. 

As caregivers, you also need to set boundaries to continue caring for others.

What's important is that you recognize the need to be kind to yourself as you are to others.

Take care of yourself.

Self-care can look different for most people. 

It can be a morning routine or an afternoon jog. It can also be a trip to the grocery store. 

Some go on one-week vacations while others prefer staying at home doing nothing. 

Self-care is not just something you do on the surface. It also means taking care of other aspects of yourself beyond the physical. 

It's caring about your thoughts, health, and sanity. 

Permit yourself to be flawed.

imperfect

This is so important for caring for others, especially the elderly. 

Not everyone has a good relationship with their aging parents. Often times, seniors can say cruel things. 

Sometimes it gets to you no matter how kind and patient you are. And there will be times that you snap.

Don't worry too much about it. After all, you're human with feelings and emotions. 

Forgive yourself if you lose your temper. Take a breath. Count to five. Step out of the room for a bit. 

Give yourself permission to feel your feelings and then start over again.

Remember that you are not alone.

This is such an important reminder for all caregivers. 

It's easy to feel alone when caring for the sick and the elderly. The work is physically demanding and emotionally draining. 

There are times when even well-meaning people can sound distant and disconnected. So instead of comforting you, their words can make you feel more alone. 

The good thing is that you're never alone. So many caregivers go through these feelings all the time. 

Caregiver groups are now available on social media channels like Facebook and Reddit. Here you could have the option of sharing your challenges and finding the right solutions to your problems. 

Sometimes they also offer comfort to those who are feeling caregiver guilt.

Some people even create good relationships and networks in these groups. 

Check out my previous blog post about which groups to join for support. 

Final thoughts 

If you ask,' why do I feel like I'm not good enough, it means it's time for a break. 

There are different ways to address these thoughts. What matters is finding the right one that lets you take a breather. 

Remember, you deserve as much care as others too. 

How do you deal with caregiver guilt? Share it in the comments below. 

That's all for today.

Take care, keep mom safe and have a great day!

Winn

Articles of Interest:

  1. THE NEED FOR CAREGIVER SELF CARE WHEN CARING FOR THE ELDERLY
  2. WHAT IS THE SANDWICH GENERATION AND HOW CAN THEY COPE WITH THEIR RESPONSIBILITIES
  3. THE NEED FOR CAREGIVER SELF CARE WHEN CARING FOR THE ELDERLY

Do you hear yourself saying, “I’m not good enough”?

Ask any caregiver this question, and you will get a yes.

Whether caring for a baby or aging parents, it’s easy to find fault in your actions. 

But you know what? If you’re feeling this way, there’s good news for you. 

Today we’ll discuss what to do when you question your worth as a caregiver. 

So stop saying I’m not good enough and start doing these things instead. 

The emotional side of caregiving 

The task of taking care of someone in itself is an emotional process. And a massive part of caregiving has to deal with the expectations that come with it. 

Imagine this. 

One morning, you get a call from a cousin you haven’t heard from in a while. 

You pick up the phone, wondering if he’s about to ask you for money or to remind you of a family event you missed. 

You hear a quiver as he tells you your dad fell hard this morning in the garage.

He slipped while standing on a stool, reaching for something on the upper storage shelves. 

It’s a good thing the shelf of lawn tools didn’t fall on your dad, he also said. 

Now you’re booking the next available flight to your hometown. And when you arrive, you hear the doctor say that your father will need hip replacement surgery. 

The surgery goes well, but they see other complications because your dad is almost 80. From what the doctors say, he’s in the middle stages of dementia. 

Now it makes sense: the incoherent conversations, the paranoia, the unexplained anger and resentment you’ve been getting from your dad. 

The doctor tells you that your dad needs full-time care. And you’re the only person that is next of kin. 

You check on relatives who can help, but no one is available. And caregiver services seem to be an expensive option.

Then you find yourself asking, now what? 

Types of caregiver guilt 

It may sound a bit dramatic, but what you just read is a reality for many people. 

Whether gradual or sudden, most are never ready to face the challenges of caregiving. 

Even those in the business of providing caregiver services often say it’s a handful. 

Everyone tends to cope in their way. But sometimes, it can get to be too much, too quickly. 

If you’re on this roller coaster of emotions now, don’t worry. It happens to everyone. 

And the first thing to do in these situations is to acknowledge what you’re going through. After that, you will only start understanding and finding better ways to cope with your case. 

Here are the types of guilt most caregivers deal with daily. 

caregiver guilt

Guilt over accidents or previous events 

Some caregivers carry the burden of ‘what-ifs.’ What if they could have prevented the accident? What if they spent more time with their aging parents? Would things be more different?

Guilt over the level of priority

Most caregivers have other roles to play: a wife, a mother, a sibling, and a child. But, because caregivers almost always prioritize their aging parents, they also feel guilty for not prioritizing their spouses or their own families. 

Feeling guilty about needing or doing self-care 

Taking some time off may be expected for some. But for many caregivers, it’s almost a sin to feel good while others are in pain.  

Because of this, they tend to skip self-care altogether. 

Guilt over neglecting other family members 

Some caregivers find themselves as the “official caregiver” of the family because some members overstep their boundaries. 

They are also often made to feel guilty for not showing the same concern towards others as they do to their charge. 

Feeling anger or resentment towards others

This is common for caregivers, especially if no other family member is stepping up to share the responsibility. 

Instead of addressing anger or resentment, they try to keep a positive approach to the situation. 

What to do when you hear “I’m not good enough”

what to do when you hear I'm not good enough

Feeling guilty about many things is easy when you’re in a caregiver position. 

But know that feelings are a part of being human. So all your feelings: anger, resentment, loneliness, anxiousness, and regret, are valid. 

What’s not good is blaming yourself for things you do not control.

So the moment you hear yourself saying I’m not good enough, take a step back and think.

Your mind and body may tell you it’s time to take a break. 

You may not see it, but you’re doing your best with what you have. And that alone speaks volumes. 

Don’t deny what you feel because feelings and emotions can pass. Instead, identify why these emotions are coming up. Doing so will help you understand your feelings and manage how you respond to them. 

One thing that helps is to have a gratitude journal where you can record your journey. This will help you track and identify the events that trigger these responses from you. 

The better you recognize these triggers, the more aware you will be about how you respond. 

It will also help you let go of the unnecessary guilt that you are made to feel. 

Learn more about how to manage caregiver burnout here. 

Final Thoughts 

It’s never easy to deal with guilt feelings as a caregiver. 

So whenever you feel like saying, “I’m not good enough as a caregiver,” take a step back and look at how far you’ve come. 

Don’t be too hard on yourself. And know that you’re doing the best you can. 

That's all for today.

Take care, keep mom safe and have a great day!

Winn

Articles of Interest:

  1. CAREGIVER BURNOUT AND STRESS - SYMPTOMS AND TREATMENT
  2. THE NEED FOR CAREGIVER SELF CARE WHEN CARING FOR THE ELDERLY
  3. MODERN TECHNOLOGY TO REDUCE CAREGIVER STRESS AND WORRY

Do you want to know how to treat sarcopenia in the elderly?

In the previous blog post, we discussed what sarcopenia is and how it affects a person’s daily life. 

We also discussed the difference between muscle atrophy and sarcopenia. 

Today, we are going to share more information about how to treat sarcopenia in the elderly. We will also be sharing tips on how you can prevent it from happening to your loved ones. 

So let’s get it started… 

Is sarcopenia treatable?

Sarcopenia has its consequences, and they’re often severe in older adults.

As strength and functional capacity decline associated with the condition, it can lead to various adverse health outcomes.

And this includes frailty, disability, or even loss of function needed for daily tasks.

Now the question remains: is sarcopenia treatable, especially in older people?

At the moment, there are no approved medications for sarcopenia approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

But like everything else, prevention is better than cure. 

A huge part of developing sarcopenia in seniors lies in the type of lifestyles they’re living. 

Research reports that 60% of older adults spend more than four hours per day sitting at home. About 65% admit to spending at least three hours and 55% spend two hours watching TV. 

In total, about 67% of the older generation spend about eight and a half hours a day inactive at home. 

A sedentary lifestyle causes more problems, including the development of sarcopenia. 

Other triggers can include unhealthy diets and insufficient nutrients, chronic or long-term diseases, and inflammation caused by illnesses. 

And believe it or not, severe stress can also trigger muscle loss.

So the best way to fight sarcopenia is to prevent it from happening. 

How to prevent sarcopenia in the elderly

A healthy lifestyle is the best way to prevent muscle loss in the elderly. 

Unfortunately, it’s not as easy as it sounds. 

Most seniors deal with a lot of habits they’ve developed in the past. And most of them may find it difficult to adapt to new routines and requirements of old age. 

Older adults also often experience a phenomenon called anabolic resistance. This lowers their bodies’ capacity to break down and do protein synthesis.

Hormonal imbalances also affect their body functions including metabolism, blood pressure, and  tissue growth and development.

Because of this, you can expect some resistance when you’re presenting lifestyle changes with your senior loved ones. 

However, encouraging new and healthy habits is worth the effort. 

So here are some ways you can help prevent sarcopenia in your loved ones. 

Get moving! 

The key is to lead a physically active lifestyle. 

Researchers have identified progressive resistance training as the first-line treatment for seniors to avoid sarcopenia.

Resistance training increases muscle strength and stimulates muscle hypertrophy. It also increases the cross-sectional areas responsible for power activity.

how to treat sarcopenia - resistance training

According to the CDC, it is beneficial for older adults to participate in muscle strengthening exercises for at least two days in a week.

Seniors may do training using resistance bands, weights, or exercise machines provided they are fit enough to do so.

Aerobic exercises are also recommended as they improve aerobic capacity, cardiovascular function, and metabolic regulation.

Simple exercises like walking and swimming are also great options to choose from. 

Just a little reminder though. Make sure to consult with health professionals before engaging with any physical activity. 

This way your aging parents will get the right guidance and avoid further muscle or joint strains. 

Check out five common musculoskeletal disorders in seniors you should be aware of.

Add more color to their plate

Food and nutrition plays a crucial role in avoiding sarcopenia altogether. 

It is known that the loss of bone and muscle mass is inevitable as we grow older. To combat this, seniors must increase the intake of good proteins like fish and legumes. 

Animal proteins such as pork and beef may be difficult to digest as we age. Be sure to also offer protein-rich alternatives like nuts, seeds, and whole grain. 

how to treat sarcopenia: fresh and good food

According to the ESPEN, seniors need at least at least 1.0-1.2 g protein of their body weight a day. 

Choose grass fed and locally raised cuts of beef whenever possible to lessen additives and chemicals in meat. And don’t forget to add more fiber to their diet. 

Fiber-rich food like fruits, beans, and nuts can aid in digestion. It also helps your loved ones avoid bowel problems and certain cancers. 


Get more Zzzs

Sleep is vital in ensuring the body’s growth and repair, even in older adults. That’s why you should ensure that your loved ones are getting enough rest every day.

Poor sleep quality and lower duration of sleep increases the risk of muscle mass reduction and strength. 


There are different factors that may affect an elderly person’s sleeping patterns. Medications, sleep disorders, and neurodegenerative disorders are among them. 

However, good sleep can be improved through exercise, proper diet, and creating a conducive sleep environment for your aging parents. 

Check out five effective tips on better sleep for seniors here

Take on a new challenge 

find new challenges

Who says aging should stop you from taking on new challenges and having fun?

There are tons of new and exciting adventures your loved ones can enjoy on their own or with friends. The key is to help them find activities that excite and challenge them. 

If you don’t have any ideas about what to do, check out local senior activity centers near you. 

They have programs like creative arts, community service, volunteer opportunities, and other activities that your loved ones may enjoy. 

You can even gift them with a new pet to take care of! 

Don’t know where to start? Here’s my blog post on how to get the best pet for your parents

Visit your doctor 

It’s best to book a doctor’s visit before deciding on any of the activities listed above. 

Remember, our priority is for your aging parents to be safe, well, and healthy. 

So consult a doctor before changing anything with their diets or daily activities.

Have the doctors check on the best exercise or physical activities your parents can do. Or better yet, ask for referrals for senior programs that would fit their needs. 

If you need help with how to prepare before doctor visits, click here

Final Thoughts

While there’s no quick fix for treating sarcopenia, there are ways to prevent it and/or prevent it from worsening. 

Eating a balanced diet, getting regular exercise, and maintaining an active lifestyle are all important steps in keeping your aging parents healthy and happy. 

For more tips on how to care for your loved ones as they age, subscribe to our blog for regular updates. 

That's all for today.

Take care, keep mom safe and have a great day!

Winn

Articles of Interest:

  1. AGE IN PLACE DESIGN GUIDELINES MADE ACHIEVABLE FOR THE ELDERLY
  2. HOW ELDERLY HOME CARE MAKES AGING IN PLACE POSSIBLE FOR SENIORS
  3. PREVENTION OF FALLS AT HOME - STEPS YOU CAN TAKE TO PREVENT FALLING