Tag Archives: caregiver resources

Cold vs Flu: Symptoms at a Glance

Posted by on February 19, 2014 under Caregiver Corner | Be the First to Comment

Is it a Cold or the Flu

Not sure if it’s a cold or the flu? According to the CDC, over 90% of flu-related deaths occur in people over the age of 65 – which means making the wrong assumption can put our vulnerable loved ones at risk. See the list of cold and flu symptoms compared below:




Fever is pretty rare with a cold Fever is usually present with the flu. A temperature of 101°F or higher for 3-4 days is associated with the flu.
Slight body aches and pains can be part of a cold Severe aches and pains are common with the flu.
Chills are uncommon with a cold Chills are fairly common in most flu cases.  Chills and shivering are a normal reaction to a cold environment, but unexplained chills can also be a sign of the flu.
Tiredness is fairly mild with a cold. Tiredness is moderate to severe with the flu. It’s normal to feel tired at the end of a long day or when youd on’t get adequate sleep, but unexplained tiredness can be a sign of the flu.
SUDDEN SYMPTOMS Cold symptoms are not sudden and develop over a few days. The flu has a rapid onset within 3-6 hours. The flu hits hard and includes sudden symptoms like high fever, aches and pains.
A hacking, productive (mucus-producing) cough is often present with a cold. A dry, nonproductive cough is usually present with the flu.
Sneezing is common with a cold. Sneezing is not as common, but can accompany the flu.
A stuffy or runny nose usually accompanies a cold and typically resolves spontaneously within a week. Stuffy or runny nose can be present with the flu.
Sore throat is commonly present with a cold. A sore throat refers to pain and inflammation in the throat area Sore throat is not as common, but can be present with the flu.
Chest discomfort is mild to moderate with a cold. Chest discomfort is often severe with the flu. Chest discomfort refers to pain or abnormal sensations that you feel anywhere along the front of your body in your upper torso.
A headache is fairly uncommon with a cold. A headache is very common with the flu, present in up to 80% of flu cases.

People At High Risk For Flu-Related Complications

For most people, the flu develops into a relatively mild illness. The flu is considered mild when infected person does not need medical care or antiviral drugs, and when they recover in less than two weeks. However, some groups of people are at high risk for developing flu-related complications, that can result in hospitalization or even death. People in these high-risk groups include:

  • Adults 65 or older
  • Children younger than 5 yrs old, and especially children younger than 2 yrs old
  • Pregnant women
  • American Indians and Alaskan Natives
  • People with the following medical conditions: Asthma, neurological and neurodevelopmental conditions, chronic lung disease, heart disease, blood disorders, endocrine disorders, kidney disorders, liver disorders, metabolic disorders, a weakened immune system, people younger than 19 years old who are on a long-term aspirin regimen, and people who are morbidly obese

For more information about cold and flu symptoms, or if you are concerned about flu symptoms in yourself or a loved one, please contact your primary care physician.

To browse our home health care products and supplies, visit TotalHomeCareSupplies.com.

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Best Holiday Gifts for Caregivers

Posted by on December 11, 2013 under Caregiver Corner | Be the First to Comment

Daugher and Mother smiling at Christmas

Finding the right gift for someone you love can be a challenge.  Caregivers devote so much time, love and attention to those in their care that often they have little free time to themselves. The best holiday gift for the caregiver in your life may simply be help from friends and family – but how do you turn that help into a stocking-stuffer?

The Alzheimer’s Association has created an easy, printable Caregiver Coupon Book for the holiday season!  Just click, print, and present in any way you wish.  Caregiver coupons include:

  • A Home-Cooked Meal
  • A Free Day of Caregiving for “Me Time” or Time with Friends
  • 30 Minutes of Relaxation
  • A Helpline Call on Behalf of the Caregiver
  • 3 Hours of Respite Care
  • Chauffeur for the Day
  • Coffee Breaks and more!

Caregiver Coupons

To download the complete Caregivers Coupon Book, visit the Alzheimer’s Association Blog, or download this Alzheimer’s Association Holiday Coupon Book in PDF format.

For more Caregiver support and resources, visit Caregiver Corner on the TotalHomeCareSupplies Blog.

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Caregiver Resources: 5 Work At Home Jobs to Explore

Posted by on August 13, 2013 under Caregiver Corner | Be the First to Comment

Senior Man Using Laptop At HomeFor many caregivers, juggling work and caregiving is extremely stressful.  From attending regular doctor’s appointments to arranging interim care, caregivers frequently struggle to maintain a traditional work schedule.  Thankfully, there are growing opportunities for professionals who need flexible schedules to work from home.

Here are five examples of jobs you can do from home:

  1. Telecommuting:  Between the internet and advanced mobile technology, millions of office workers now have the ability to telecommute.  For family caregivers, telecommuting can offer significant advantages, including the flexibility to schedule your time around your loved one’s needs without having to take sick days or vacation time in order to ferry a loved one to and from doctor’s appointments.  In addition, the time and money that would otherwise be spent getting dressed up and commuting is more quality time that can be spent with a loved one.  The work still needs to get done, however, and a caregiver must be able to set aside time that is free from distraction, which can be a challenge.
  2. Owning an online store:  Are you an artist or designer who has always wanted to open up your own store?  If you’ve toyed with the idea, but have never had the time or money to set up a business, sites such as Etsy.com and Ebay.com offer the opportunity to sell your creations online. Etsy specializes in virtual store owners who sell unique handmade crafts and vintage items.  Ebay is a larger, more varied marketplace. Sites like these normally charge users a small fee to set up their online “shop” and post their products, or they might take a percentage of a product’s final selling price.
  3. Freelancing:  If you have a skill (writing, editing, photography, etc.) that you can market à la carte, consider a career as a self-employed professional. Being a freelancer means that you have the freedom to pick and choose which jobs and projects (usually short-term) you’re willing or able to take on. Online directories such as Elance.com or Arise.com post freelance jobs.  You can also post your skill (teaching photoshop, for example) on local bulletin boards or in coffee shops or school newsletters.
  4. Online or In-Home tutoring:  For students of all ages, there is always the need for tutors.  If you’ve got any kind of teaching experience, or if you are skilled in a subject (math, writing, Spanish, etc.) and enjoy helping people, look into virtual tutoring opportunities.  Websites like Tutor.com can provide information on online tutoring options, and school bulletin boards, newsletters and local papers could all provide opportunities to connect with those seeking home tutor assistance.
  5. Translating:  Fluency in a foreign language is a highly valued skill!  Both national and international companies often jump at the chance to have their text transformed from one language to another.  Check out web directories for freelance work, such as Elance.com, for sections that include online translation job postings.  A foreign language skill is a valuable commodity to many companies who wish to offer bilingual services to their customers as well.  Consider applying to work for individual corporations as a remote bilingual customer service representative.

RELATED: Caregiver Burnout: Signs, Symptoms and Solutions

For more health information and caregiver resources, visit our Caregiver Corner blog on TotalHomeCareSupplies.com.  Care More.  Spend Less.  Save Now.