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By Dian Brannen, 8:00 am on October 27, 2014

We’ve all experienced that moment when we’ve misplaced our keys or forgotten to pay a recurring monthly bill. While frustrating, these moments are often just lapses in our short term memory and can be attributed to the fast-paced lifestyle many of us lead. However, for seniors and aging adults, this is not always the case. When simple daily tasks are constantly forgotten, ignored or overlooked by your aging loved one, it may be time to schedule an appointment with his or her doctor or primary care physician. As a leading provider of in-home dementia care in the Lehigh Valley, we know how difficult and emotional it can be for families to admit that a loved one may need help because of memory issues. However, because early detection offers the best…

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By Dian Brannen, 8:00 am on October 20, 2014

It can be difficult to entrust the care of an aging parent or loved one to another person. However, the right person, who is as qualified as they are compassionate, can be an invaluable resource for your loved one and your family. If your aging loved one needs assistance to live at home safely and you are unable to provide an adequate level of support on your own, consider an in-home caregiver from Home Care Assistance. Here are just five reasons why families in the Lehigh Valley rely on our caregivers to help their loved ones age in place: Our Caregivers are Highly Qualified – Our caregivers are individuals who we would be confident leaving our own family members with. All of our caregivers undergo rigorous background investigations and we…

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By Dian Brannen, 8:00 am on October 13, 2014

With Halloween just a few weeks away, we thought we’d share one of our favorite fall recipes – a pumpkin smoothie. Not only can the bold and rich flavors of this smoothie spice up a boring diet, the following single serve recipe is a great snack and only takes five minutes to make! Ingredients 1 cup organic canned pumpkin 1 ripe banana ½ cup coconut milk Agave nectar to taste (to sweeten) Pinch of sea salt (about 1/8th tsp) 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice Optional Additions 1 tbsp raw honey 1 tbsp bee pollen 1 tbsp flax seed oil Preparation Put all ingredients in blender and process until smooth. A Little Bit about the Ingredients As a provider of live-in and hourly home care in the Lehigh Valley, we know…

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By Dian Brannen, 8:00 am on October 6, 2014

We’ve all heard the saying, “home is where the heart is.” A person’s home is not only filled with their belongings, but with cherished memories from years past. It is a place of comfort and familiarity, something that often stays constant as the rest of life passes by.  So it’s no surprise that industry statistics are stating that about 90% of seniors would prefer to age in place, to live out their golden years in the comfort of home. The growing movement toward aging in place has been made possible by numerous changes in society including, but not limited to: Longer Lifespans – Today’s seniors are more educated than they were in the past, with many understanding the importance of healthy dieting, routine exercise and staying social and engaged with…

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By Dian Brannen, 3:05 pm on August 11, 2014

The elderly are likely one of the last groups of people you would imagine struggle with drug and alcohol abuse. Yet, new data indicates that senior drug abuse is actually a growing epidemic. According to the Prevention Tactics report, 12 to 15% of seniors who seek medical attention show signs of prescription drug abuse. And, this number is expected to rise dramatically. A document from the Johns Hopkins Medical School estimates that the number of Americans over the age of 50 abusing prescription drugs will increase by 190% from 2001 to 2020. In addition to prescription drug abuse, alcoholism is another major issue among seniors. According to a study published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, more than a third of seniors over the age of 60 consume excessive and…

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By Dian Brannen, 4:09 pm on June 5, 2014

My father-in-law Al started talking about taking my son Patrick on a trip to Alaska when Patrick was around 10 years old. My heart would sink every time he would bring the subject up to me. All I could think about was, what would happen if Al (he was 68 at the time and in good health) would suddenly have a heart attack or a stroke while they were so far away? It made me sad to think of Patrick all alone having to deal with some sort of medical emergency with his grandfather. Or I would worry about Al not being able to navigate the trip with out my mother-in-law by his side to tell him what to do or where to go and when to do it (he…

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By Dian Brannen, 4:50 pm on May 21, 2014

Over the past couple of years I have been feeling under the weather.  It didn’t come on all at once but little by little over the course of a couple of years.  I started complaining that my head felt foggy, my joints became stiff and achy, fluttering heart, I was tired all the time.  This winter my latest complaint was that I was sicker than usual.  Normally, I would average one cold in the winter and one in the summer.  This winter though it seemed like I had one cold after the other.  I knew all these signs and symptoms were not normal for me, something had to be wrong!  All the possibilities of what it could be wrong with me kept running through my head, “Do I have arthritis, chronic fatigue,…

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By Dian Brannen, 1:26 pm on May 13, 2014

I was racking my brain trying to decide what to blog about this week.  Vitamin D deficiency? Maybe.  Cholesterol and egg yolks? Not today.  Stress and aging? No.  None of my ideas were screaming write about me, write about me!  So, having sat in front of the computer for 20 minutes with nothing yet typed I decided to write about Vitamin D Deficiency, it is an interesting topic! Then, while taking a break before I dove in, I had a conversation with my husband about a conversation he had with a mutual friend who told his mother that Mothers’ Day was a fake holiday made up by the gift card industry and he was not going to fight traffic this weekend to come see her.  I asked my husband, “Well, you do know the real story of Mother’s Day don’t you?’ …

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By Dian Brannen, 3:00 pm on April 30, 2014

This post is probably a year and a half overdue!  But we just launched our new website and so what better time to begin blogging?  I figured we’d start with a picture of our office, and introduce you to myself (Dian) and our client care manager (Rachael)! So here goes!  Our office is located on S. Cedar Crest Blvd. in Allentown.  We provide home care assistance in the Lehigh Valley area, serving towns such as Allentown, Bethlehem, Whitehall, Macungie, Emaus, Easton, Nazareth, Saucon Valley and pretty much everywhere in between! As I mentioned, my name is Dian Brannen – I am the Owner and Director of Operations for Home Care Assistance Lehigh Valley, and also a mom of 5 (yes, I said 5 – 2 sets of twin girls and my oldest, a…

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