Photo Credit: Fort George G. Meade Public Affairs Office
“I can literally feel my blood pressure rising.” We’ve often heard the expression from folks who get annoyed at the noise from a neighbor’s noisy leafblower, a bad bit of TV news or just a harmless prank by co-workers – but this innocuous comment can be a signal of a serious problem. As we get older, our blood vessels can harden and constrict blood flow, leading to a whole slate of poor health effects – not least of which can be the onset of vascular dementia, the second-most common form of dementia after Alzheimers. If your brain isn’t getting enough oxygen and nutrients, brain cells can become damaged or even die off. That’s bad news all around.
Even worse, unless you’ve been to a doctor, you may not know you have hypertension, otherwise known as high blood pressure. You can have it and be symptom-free for years! In the meantime, not knowing there’s a problem, you may not change your lifestyle to slow down or reverse the effects. Is your blood pressure reading below 120 over 80? If you don’t know, it’s time to get yourself checked. Continue reading
Photo Credit: EverydayInventors
Which is safer? Putting girders on place on the 22nd floor of a new Vancouver high-rise in your new work boots, or caring for senior citizens struggling with dementia? Worker injury claims for dementia caregivers are actually more expensive per capita than from the construction sector – and some days, you may feel like you need to wear a hard hat just to get through the day. The work environment of a care home may seem a lot safer to the eye. However, workplace violence from dementia patients can be an unwelcome surprise for an unwary nurse who just wants to help vulnerable people to live in dignity with a better quality of life.
Risk in the caregiver’s workplace can unfortunately be quite serious, as a BC nurse learned recently. As reported in Metro News, one nurse attacked by a patient needed stitches after being head-butted, elbowed and (while she was helpless on the floor) hit with a rock. Making matters worse, the paging system set up to help nurses remain secure wasn’t even working. Sadly, these kinds of incidents are not uncommon. As the CBC noted about a year before that attack, the BC Coroners’ office was already investigating horrendous attacks by dementia patients on other patients. Continue reading