Senior Safe-Drugs & Medicine-Prescriptions & Medications-Web Doctors-Childproofing

Senior Safe-Drugs & Medicine-Prescriptions & Medications-Web Doctors-Childproofing

A Real Danger:

As we get older our bodies change, affecting the way foods and medications are absorbed, distributed, metabolized and excreted, creating a greater risk of drug interactions and side effects.

Because of this, many seniors are sensitive to the effects of medication and require lower doses. Some medications should never be prescribed to seniors. Many senior adults see more than one doctor or specialist. This is why it is highly important to share records and communicate about medications and treatments to avoid overmedicating, adverse drug reactions or side effects. Overmedication is not only costly but some seniors may be taking drugs unnecessarily.

*Drug misuse is one of the top problems that doctors see in senior adults.

*It is estimated that 320,000 questionable prescriptions are written for seniors yearly.

*Almost 40% of all drug reactions each year involve people over 60.

RX Tips:

Whether you are taking a prescription over the counter (OTC) medication, vitamin or supplement or using a cream, salve, holistic preparation or herbal remedy, it is very important that you discuss them with your primary doctor and/or pharmacist. Follow their instructions exactly to avoid dangerous reactions and side effects. The more medications you take, the easier it is to lose track of how many to take and when they should be taken.

*Make sure all of your doctors and any specialists communicate with each other on all medication and conditions.

*Make sure you understand how and when to take all of your medications:

*Have your doctor or pharmacist write instructions down if necessary.

*Find out if they need to be taken with anything (food, water, milk).

*Ask about food or drug interactions that may interfere with the medication.

*Read all instructions and know about the possible side effects or reactions.

*Know how long you need to take the medication.

*Select over the counter products to treat only the symptoms you have. Ask the pharmacist to make sure it won’t react with any of your current medications.

*Make sure all medications are clearly labeled and in original containers. If you have trouble reading a prescription label, ask for larger print type or use a magnifying glass or reader.

*Never take medication in the dark. You may make a mistake.

*The average senior takes 2-7 daily medications.

*Know what your medications look like. If it doesn’t look the same, contact your pharmacy or Poison Control Center about medication identification, interactions and overdoses. Keep their number by every phone: 1-800-222-1222.

*Only take the amount prescribed for you. Doubling up on medication will not make you better twice as fast. Never take someone else’s medication.

*Never stop taking a medication just because you feel better. If you stop too soon you could hamper recovery or cause a reoccurrence.

*Develop a system for taking your medication. Use a container system. Use a timer if you are having problems taking medication at a certain time. Get prescriptions refilled before you need them to avoid running out.

*Before traveling, discuss your medications and any time changes with your doctor. Carry all medications with you instead of packing them in your suitcase.

According to the FDA, 40-75% of older adults take the wrong amount of medication or take it at the wrong time.

Web Doctors:

The Internet offers information from medical advice and miracle “cures” to the purchase of medications. Many people have even discovered valuable life-saving information from a web site.

But don’;’t be fooled. Anyone can create a web site providing professional sounding advice or offers. A ‘so-called expert’ may have no medical or first hand experience. Never trust a diagnosis from someone who has not examined you. (It’s unethical and illegal).

Government health agencies sponsor some of the more reliable sites. A medical site run by experts should have:

*names and credentials listed up front.

*mission statements or an explanation of their business plans.

*a seperation between the editorial content and advertising/shopping opportunities.

*information detailing who is providing the expert opinion and their references, origins of content and current dates and updated postings. (Medical information becomes outdated quickly.)

*confidentiality agreements. (Find out how any personal information you provide will be used.)

*listings of sponsors. (Considering how that might affect the direction of the information.)

If you are experiencing a true medical emergency, dial 9-1-1 not the Internet.

Childproofing:

Be responsible. Dispose of medications in a safe manner. Avoid using wastebaskets where children and pet have easy access and may accidentally overdose. Flush unwanted medications down the toilet or tune them in to your pharmacy where available. (It’s more environment friendly.) Many prescriptions for seniors are lethal to children.

Dispose of any medication:

*that you are no longer taking.

*whose label you can no longer read.

*that is outdated.

Places to childproof:

Children like to explore. They find medications in:

*purses

*pill organizers

*medicine cabinets

*refrigators shelves

*first aid kits

*suitcases

*pockets

*lower drawers

*wastebaskets

Prepare for an Unexpected Visit:

If you don’t have children (or pets) in your home on a regular basis, still follow simple vital safety precautions.

  1. keep medications and chemicals locked up out of reach.
  2. do not refer to medicine as candy.
  3. never take medicine in front of children. (They like to imitate.)
  4. only give children medicine that is intended for their age and weight

Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from the National Child Safety Council pamphlet and I give them full credit for this information. Please check out their website for more information.

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Senior Safe-Health Management-Screening-Emergencies-Seasonal Immunizations

Senior Safe-Health Management-Screening-Emergencies-Seasonal Immunizations

Know your body:

With age comes a gradual diminishing of the senses: slowly dimming vision, gradual hearing loss and lessening sensitivity of the senses of smell, taste and touch. But disease is not an inevitable part of growing older. Many people age without ever being seriously ill. But too often, senior adults accept debilitating conditions and symptoms as “old age” and may never know that most of their problems are treatable, even curable.

Because of advances in medical science, we can live long and healthier lives. Regular check-ups, early detection and treatment can make a difference between a minor condition and a life threatening illness. Many hospitals and health care centers offer regular screening events for seniors, often at no cost. Participate! It’s quick and easy and you’ll know you’ve made a positive step toward better health.

*More than 16 million Americans have diabetes and 6 million of those don’t know it.

*Stokes strike 550,000 Americans every year, killing 150,000.

*Just because you haven’t seen a doctor, doesn’t mean you aren’t at risk.

Vital Tests:

As part of your regular health care, have a yearly check-up from your primary care physician. based on the examination, tests or screenings may be recommended to detect ailments or diseases. Discuss with your doctor your individual possibilities for illness based on heredity, previous illness and current symptoms before advanced problems occur.

*Blood Pressure: Have it checked at least once a year, more often if you already have hypertension. High blood pressure affects approximately 50 million people. It can cause a heart attack/heart failure, stroke, kidney failure as well as host of other serious problems. 1/3 of the people with high blood pressure don’t even know they have it because it often shows no signs or symptoms.

*Cholesterol: Check it at least every two years between ages 60 and 75 then yearly. People with heart disease usually have high levels of cholesterol. High cholesterol is often treated with diet, exercise and sometimes medication.

*Diabetes: Have a fasting plasma glucose or oral glucose-tolerance blood test every three years if level is normal, every 1-2 years if it isn’t.

*Dental Exam: Have a twice a year, whether you have natural teeth or dentures.

*Electrocardiogram (EKG): Have a baseline EKG by age 65. Frequency of EKG’s depends on history. 95% of people who have a stroke don’t go to the hospital in the the first three hours.

*Hearing Exam: Have annually along with your regular physical.

*Eye Exam: Have a basic exam and glaucoma test annually by an ophthalmologist or after age 65 every two years.

*Osteoporosis Screening: Beginning at age 60 do a bone density screening test (x-ray) every two years to identify bone loss. Osteoporosis is a disease in which bones are weak, causing them to break more often. Treatment for osteoporosis is often a change in diet rich in calcium and vitamin D, exercise or hormone replacement therapy.

*Mammogram: Do annually after age 50. Self-examine your breasts monthly.

*Occult Blood: Annually test for blood in a stool sample.

*Colon Exam: Have a fecal-occult blood test every year, a flexible sigmoidoscopy or barium enema X-ray every five years, depending on personal history. Colonoscopy every ten years.

*Prostate: Starting at 50, have a digital rectal exam and PSA blood test annually.

*Testicular Exam: Do yearly. Perform a self-examination monthly.

Emergencies:

These ARE health emergencies that require immediate action. All warning signs and symptoms may not be exhibited or may come and go. Dial 9-1-1 immediately. Calling a physician first may take too long.

Diabetic Insulin Reaction Symptoms:

*profuse sweating

*nervousness rapid pulse

*shallow breathing

*drunken appearance

*appear confused/incoherent for no reason

Heart Attack Symptoms:

* extreme or moderate shortness of breath

*discomfort, tightness or pain in the center or left of chest, often radiating to arm or other areas that lasts more than a few minutes.

*nausea, vomiting

*anxiety, uneven pulse or heartbeat sweating

*lightheadedness, loss of consciousness

Stroke Symptoms:

*sudden numbness, weakness or paralysis in the victim’s face, limbs or on one side of body (followed by pins and needles tingling)

*sudden confusion or disorientation

*heavy breathing inability to speak

*sudden , severe, unexplained headache

*unexplained dizziness, loss of balance

*loss of consciousness, convulsions

*sudden nausea, vomiting

Heat Stroke Symptoms:

*body temp. over 104F

*red, dry and/or hot skin

*dilated pupils

*deep breathing with a fast pulse then shallow breathing with a weak pulse

*irritability, confusion, delirium, hallucinations

*loss of consciousness, convulsions

Seasonal Immunization:

Influenza (the flu) is a contagious respiratory illness with mild to severe or life-threatening complications, especially for seniors. The flu season varies yearly.

Symptoms include a high fever, headaches, extreme tiredness, dry cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, chills and muscle aches. It is spread from person to person through coughing and sneezing.

To avoid the flu:

*get a flu shot. If it’s unavailable, your doctor may prescribe an antiviral medication.

*avoid close contact with people who are sick.

*wash your hands often and cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing.

Be Prepared:

Seniors have special health concerns. Knowing how to respond in these health emergencies may save a life. Ideally, at lease one person in every household should be trained and certified in Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR), taking yearly refresher classes.

*Never move an accident victim. It could further the damage.

*Never give alcohol to a person who is ill or has had an accident. It could harm them or affect their treatment.

*Never give food or drink to an unconscious person. It won’t help them. He could choke.

*Always wear or carry your Med Alert information on you.

Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from the National Child Safety Council pamphlet and I give them full credit for the information. Please check out their website for more information on their programs.

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Senior Safe-Avoiding Falls-Indoors and Outdoors

Senior Safe-Avoiding Falls-Indoors and Outdoors

Avoiding Falls:

The majority of accidental falls are not job-related or involve situations of extreme danger. They occur in homes during everyday activities. Look for ways to reduce potentially hazardous situations. There are simple steps to keep yourself safe.

*1 out of 3 people aged 65 and older fall each year.

*Of those who fall, only half are able to return home to live independently.

*Half the falls could have been prevented.

Floors and Stairs:

*Install at least one long handrail on the staircase. Make sure it has a comfortable grip. Tighten any loosen fixtures.

*Secure carpet or stair runners that are not fasten down.

*Wear well-fitted shoes or slippers with non-slip soles.

*Paint steps with a rough textured paint or use non-slip strips.

*Avoid deep pile, dark colored or patterned carpeting that can make it difficult to see the step’s edges clearly.

*Avoid sharp changes in flooring levels such as from high carpet to low vinyl.

Bathroom Tips:

*Install a grip bar by the tub, shower stall and above the sink and toilet. Never brace yourself on a towel bar.

*Set water heater below 120F. A burn can be startling and cause a fall.

*Apply textured vinyl safety strips to the tub, shower or tile floors and use nonslip mats.

*Avoid scatter rugs! Tack down or tape, cut-to-fit carpet or rubber backed rugs.

*Use a long-handled scrubber for better balance when bending over.

*Use non slip bath and shower.

*Watch out for slick soap or water spills.

*Have a cordless telephone nearby for emergencies.

Ways to Avoid Falls:

*Use the highest allowable wattage bulbs in all light fixtures and lamps.

*Never walk into a dark room; all rooms should have a light switch or lamp by the door.

*Install night lights that lead from the bedroom to the bathroom.

*Have light switches at each end of stairs.

*Be able to reach a light switch or lamp from bed or a favorite chair. Have a flashlight nearby.

*Secure scatter rugs with double-sided tape or tacks, especially in the kitchen and bath.

*Run electrical cords against walls, never under rugs or across doorways.

*Only carry what you can safely.

*In bedrooms , eliminate scattered clothing, shoes and blankets or untucked sheets.

*Wipe up spills right away. Use detergent to cut greasy residue.

*Use a sturdy step stool with handrails to reach high cabinets. Long tongs help reach high items.

*Keep walkways clear of toys, magazines, newspapers and yard and garden equipment.

*Do not rearrange furniture; it will keep familiar patterns in place.

*Always wear your glasses.

*Use a cane with a rubber tip if balance is a problem.

*Avoid going out after a snow or ice storm. If you must, wear high-traction shoes.

Physical Change:

Mature Americans represent the fastest growing segment of our society today. In the near future, almost half of this country’s population will be over fifty.

As we age, our bodies change.This physical change is common, but as a result our bodies may become unsteady from physical conditions, medicines, illnesses and/or low blood sugar. To help avoid mishaps:

*Always take prescription drugs according to the instructions. Medicines such as antihistamines, sleeping pills and tranquilizers can cause dizziness.

*Have regular eye check-ups. Impaired sight can lead to unsteady walking.

*Monitor blood pressure. Report any dizziness to your doctor immediately.

*Get up slowly after eating, resting or lying down to avoid falls.

*Exercise to build strength and muscle tone and to keep joints, tendons and ligaments more flexible.

Impaired Mobility:

If you are having difficulty walking or moving around, consult a physician for an evaluation to determine the cause and possible treatment. Physical therapist and rehabilitation centers (Sports Medicine Centers) are trained to help people of all ages with different impairments, to regain mobility that has been comprised by illness, accident, injury or simply the aging process.

A Safe Fall?

The safest falls are those in which you:

*Allow your bod to go limp.

*Try to land on your side or buttocks.

*Roll to a natural stop.

In this way, your body avoids large joints of movement and receives fewer injuries. When you try to get up from a fall, roll over naturally, turn your head in the direction that you rolled and try to get up on your knees.

In case of a fall!

During a fall your muscles will naturally tense up.

*Stay calm. Never get up too quickly.

*Try to determine, if you are hurt.

*If you think you are hurt: DO NOT TRY TO GET UP! Call out for help. Use your emergency beeper, let someone help or dial 9-1-1.

*If you can, crawl to a stable piece of furniture such as a chair. Put both hands on the seat. Slowly pull yourself up, using the strength of your strongest knee. Keep the other knee on the floor for stability. Slowly turn around to sit in the chair. Each year over 7,000 seniors die as a result of falls.

Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from a National Child Safety Council pamphlet and I give them full credit for the information. Please check out their website for more details.

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Senior Safe: Senior Fraud-On the Street-On the Phone-At the Door

Senior Safe: Senior Fraud-On the Street-On the Phone-At the Door

National Child Safety Council

Don’t be Fooled:

One of the popular ‘weapons of choice’ today is the telephone because it provides telemarketer an easy entrance to the home and detection and prosecution are difficult. Seniors are often targeted because they are naturally trusting and may find it hard to say no to a telemarketer. $40 billion is made every year from telemarketing phone scams.

Telemarketers may work for days or weeks setting up a victim for phone fraud by pretending to be a ‘friend;, even claiming they are in a similar situation. They may use several voices to sound more legitimate. They may use real company and charity names but don’t be fooled. They shouldn’t be confused with reputable organizations.

Telemarketers called ‘list brokers’ sell their lists to each other. Thee lists may include people who have innocently filled out a sweepstakes entry or contest form.

*57% of those victims are senior adults.

*70% of seniors are targeted by telemarketers.

13 Cons & Scams:

*Business Schemes: Mail order. “Work at home” jobs usually cost more than you profit and are often from foreign countries.

*Home Repairs: ‘Free inspections or estimates’ that have hidden costs on repairs that do not exist.

*Utility Inspector: False accusation of ‘breaking utility regulations’ and offers to find a quick fix when there is really nothing wrong.

*Insurance Fraud: Policies offering ‘low rates with great benefits’. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.

*Medical Fraud/Miracle Cures: “Quick fixes” that may not be medically sound. Consult with a doctor.

*Property Scams: Fictitious ‘investment deals’. Check out the property/owner before purchasing.

*Phony Charities: Solicitations from groups pretending to be a charity, real or otherwise. Make your own contacts to donate.

*Debt Consolidation: Services offering to consolidate bills-hidden high interest rates.

*Bank Scams: You’re asked to withdraw money to help with an undercover investigation. The money becomes ‘evidence’ that is not returned.

*Investment Scams/Pyramid Schemes: “Get Rich” offers that promise little or no risk. Have your attorney check our any investments.

*Free Prize Offers: “A prize” for your credit card number, after a purchase or for attending a sales pitch, usually costs more than the prize.

*Vacation Packages: “Low-cost trips” that never take place or have hidden expenses.

*Foreign/Domestic Lottery Schemes: You’re told that you’ve inherited or won a large sum of money. Consult with an attorney. Foreign lotteries are illegal in the US.

Avoid Scams:

  1. Do not talk to telemarketers.

a. Use an answering machine: telemarketers usually won’t leave a message.

b. Get caller ID: only answer calls from phone number that you recognize.

c. Hang up if there is a long hesitation before someone responds. Telemarketers make several call at a time and talk to the first person who answers.

d. If you are not interested, hang up. If you’ve already fallen for one scam, you may be on the list of ‘easy targets’.

2. If you do talk to them, trust your instincts.

a. Never give out personal information.

*Credit card numbers

*Bank ID numbers

*Driver’s License number

*Social Security number

(It’s illegal for telemarketers to ask for this information to claim a prize or gift).

b. Ask the state or federal agencies where the company is registered or regulated.

c. Get it in writing. If the offer sounds ‘too good to be true’, it probably is. Don’t be pressured.

d. Ask to be put on Do Not Call lists.

e. Keep a call log. Note dates and times you’ve received calls when you’d requested to not be called. Con artists are skilled liars who want your money.

Protect Yourself:

Telemarketing Tips:

*Beware of testimonials that you can’t check out (contacts can be fake).

*Ask about refund policies.

*Never agree to pay for something ‘free’.

*Contact the charities where you want to donate (Telemarketing firms representing organizations keep most of the money collected).

Repair Work:

*Only contact well-established, reputable repairmen/companies.

*Never allow a repair person to fix anything with your prior approval.

*Get estimates & referrals

*Follow-up on references.

*Have someone you trust look over the agreement.

Financial Investments:

*Discuss financial decisions with someone you trust.

*Investigate before investing. Check it out by asking for local references.

*Never sign a contract without having someone you trust read it first.

*Never wire money or send cash by messenger or mail

*Never authorize bank drafts.

General Information:

*Follow up on any unpaid bills accrued by a deceased spouse. They may not be real.

*Be leery of ‘official looking’ ads or sweepstakes that you receive in the mail.

*If your Social Security number is on your driver’s license or checks have it removed.

*Avoid having bank debit cards. Stealing from them is easy.

*Avoid calling 900 numbers. They are not toll free and there are usually hidden frees.

“Tricks”: Don’t fall for these:

*”You must pay to win”.

*”You must decide now”.

*”We need your credit card number”.

*”You must pay now”. (Cashier’s check money order wired or personally picked up).

*”Do not tell anyone, say you need the money for a family emergency.” (So, others will not be alerted).

*”The initial investment will be well worth the risk” or “You’ll regret it later if you don’t”.

*”We do not provide written information or references.”

*”You’re stupid if you don’t do this.” (Humiliation and put downs used to change your mind).

*”The promise or prize is in the mail.” (But never delivered).

If you are a victim: Report fraud to local law enforcement, the Better Business Bureau or your local consumer protection office.

National Consumers League Fraud Information Center: (202) 835-3323. http://www.fraud.org

Federal Consumer Information Center. http://www.publications.usa.gov.

Disclaimer: This information is taken directly from the National Child Safety Council pamphlet, and I give them full credit for the information. Please check out their website for more information.

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Senior Safe: Home Security-Indoors-Outdoors-Alarm Systems

Senior Safe: Home Security-Indoors-Outdoors-Alarm Systems

Home Security:

On a national average, each year about 1 out of every 12 homes will be targeted by a burglar. Luck has little to do with these odds, burglars look for homes that offer easy entrance and getaway.

You may not need physically strength, speed or expensive security devices for protection, but you do need to be cautious, aware of your surroundings and appear in control.

*Robberies account for 38% of violent crimes against seniors.

*Approximately 1/2 of elderly robbery victims are attacked by more than one robber.

*38% of elderly victims of violent crimes faced someone with a gun.

*Only 7 out of 10 elderly victims report a robbery or an attempted robbery to the police.

Make your home safe and sound:

Doors:

*Outside entry doors should be metal, metal clad or solid wood, not hollow core. Make sure your doors fit tightly in their frames.

*Keep all doors locked in the basement and garage. Be sure all outside doors have non-removable hinges and deadbolt locks with a minimum one-inch throw (bolt).

*Double cylinder deadbolts (requiring a key for opening from the inside) are most secure but can be dangerous in a fire emergency and are prohibited in some communities.

*Never attach an ID tag to your keychain.

*If you lose your key or move, install new locks right away.

*Doors with glass windows less than 40 inches from the lock can be easily opened by breaking the glass and reaching inside. Replace the glass with an unbreakable pan or replace the door.

*Install a lens peephole or wide-angle viewer in all outside doors, not just the front entry. Make sure they are accessible to all family members including those in a wheelchair.

*Never let anyone at the door know you are home alone.

*Ask for a photo ID from service and delivery people. If you aren’t sure they are who they say or if you didn’t arrange the visit, call the company to verify.

*Use metal ‘Charlie bars’ for sliding glass doors, plus pin lock that slide a steel peg through both the stationary and movable doors (A wooden rod wedged into the bottom inside track is less effective).

*Chain locks are not security devices! Do not depend on them. They can be forced in.

Windows:

*Pin locks are available for double-hung windows as well as sliding glass doors. They can be installed on the side sashes as well as the center sash to allow windows to be opened a few inches and still be secure. (These locks require only a drill for installation, so they are inexpensive.

*Special locks for basement type windows are available in hardware stores.

*Get to know your neighbors and ask them to keep an eye on your home.

*If your windows or fire escapes are equipped with grates or bars, make sure they meet fire department regulations and are easy to remove.

*Keep curtains and blinds closed at night.

Security Tips:

  1. If you plan to be away, make it appear as if someone is home. Have your: house watched, the pets cared for, mail and news paper held or picked up, the lawn mowed and the lights, radio or the tv on timers.
  2. Keep landscaping open and short enough to offer no hiding places. Choose thorny plants and shrubs that will not get taller than the windows to keep out prowlers.
  3. Install outdoor lighting to shine on key areas. Leave them on at night. Motion-activated lights are highly effective for large areas which you may not wish to keep constantly illuminated.
  4. Make sure that all entrances, parking areas, hallways, stairways, laundry rooms and other common areas are well-lit. Check for and replace dim or burned out bulbs.
  5. Do not leave notes about where you are and when you will return.
  6. Have an up-to-date household inventory list and make sure your valuables are engraved with identification.
  7. Check to make sure fire stairs have an emergency exit at ground level and that they are not accessible from the outside.
  8. Make sure your house numbers are at least 4 inches tall and visible from the road.

Alarm Systems;

Security systems vary widely in effectiveness and cost even within a single community. Basic, motioned security service often includes a ‘panic button’, which also summons help in a health emergency.

*Make sure the security company you select is reputable. Check references.

*Learn how to use your system properly and what to do if you accidentally set it off.

*Consider having a small pet for security purposes.

Signs of a break in:

Do not go inside if you suspect someone has been or still is in your home. Call for help from a neighbor’s phone. Do not touch anything. Look for these signs:

*A cut or removed window screen.

*A broken window

*A door left open

*Items in disarray or moved

*A noise that sounds like someone breaking in or moving around in your home.

If you are in the house:

*Do not confront the burglar

*Try to get out of the house undetected

*Lock yourself in a room (with a phone)

*Try to get to a phone to quietly call for help.

*If the intruder enters your room and you cannot hide, pretend you are asleep.

Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from a National Child Safety Council pamphlet, and I give them full credit for the information provided. Please check out their website for more information,

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Senior Safe: Personal Safety: Internet Safety-Online Gambling-Identity Theft-ATM Safety

Senior Safe: Personal Safety: Internet Safety-Online Gambling-Identity Theft-ATM Safety

National Child Safety Council

Stay Connected: The Internet is an immense, global network that connects computers using telephone lines and/or fiber networks to store and access electronic information. People from all over the world can communicate and share information with virtually anyone in the world on the World Wide Web (WWW or The Web).

Because of the Internet is so vast and because no one polices it, there are many potential dangers. The Internet is an unprotected resource for free speech and can be used to distribute and discuss information about anything. Beware and be aware of potential danger areas for both adults and children.

*A little data can reveal a lot about you.

*15% of people over 65 have Internet Access.

Safety on the Internet:

A ‘user profile’ is information that you provide when setting up your Internet Service. Never enter into your computer personal information (your real name, age, address or phone number). The information you provide is made available to others.

In addition, your computer will begin to collect information about you including:

*Website that you frequent.

*How long you were there.

*If you download anything

*If you bought anything.

*Don’t believe everything you see and hear on the Internet as the truth.

The sites you visit keep track of you too. Armed with your email address or any other information available on public record (marriage licenses, lease agreements, etc.), anyone can find out more information or locate you.

The computer also allows you to contact others without having to write a letter or pick up a phone. Electronic mail (email) is sending a letter by computer instantaneously anywhere in the world directly to the recipient.

Using a password keeps others from accessing your email or other accounts. A password should be different from a username; choose it carefully. Unless you give your password to someone, it will make it difficult to break into your account to get your information. Any email can be copied, printed or forwarded to others.

Online Shopping:

Shopping on the Internet can be perfectly safe. Legitimate companies provide secure sites. Most utilize firewalls (an Electonic barrier to keep out hackers) and encryption (a program that scrambles your credit card number before it’s transmitted) to process your order.

*Look for a sign or picture of a lock to know if a site is secure.

*Ask how your information will be used before providing anything personal. Use an online payment system that provides privacy from the seller.

*Buy from companies that you know and trust. If you are unfamiliar with a company, check it out before buying.

*Help avoid compulsive shopping by limiting shopping time, avoiding impulse buying and considering affordability and genuine need.

Online Gambling/Addicition:

It’s no secret that older people are particularly susceptible to spending too much money in real-life casinos. One of the more common areas for senior online addiction is in online casino sites. Online gambling sites operate from outside of the US and aren’t regulated by state gaming commissions. Users are not protected as with real-life casinos from unfair house rules and gambling practices. Unlike gambling away tangible poker chips or buckets of quarters, players may not realize how great their losses are until they receive their credit card statements.

Identity Theft:

Unlike your fingerprints, which cannot be used by someone else, your personal data can be used by others. Identity theft occurs when someone knowingly transfers or uses your identity (Social Security Number, credit cards, driver’s license etc.) to open an account, make purchases, apply for a loan, apply for a job or to commit a crime.

Identity theft or fraud is a federal crime: Protect yourself.

*Adopt a ‘need to know’ approach about giving out your personal information to others. Ask how it will be used, whether it will be shared with others and ask if you have a choice about the use or confidentiality of your information.

*Never give out credit card numbers or personal information on the phone through the mail or over the Internet unless you have initiated the contact or know your contact.

*Pay attention to billing cycles. If a bill doesn’t arrive, it could mean someone has taken it or rerouted it.

*Only carry the ID and credit cards or bank cards that you will be using.

*Keep items with personal information in a safe place. Be cautious of roommates, employees, service technicians and unauthorized family members.

*If you are a victim, contact your local law enforcement and the fraud department of each of the three major credit bureaus:

Equifax (1-800-685-1111)

Experian (1-888-EXPERIAN)

Trans Union (1-800-888-4213)

10 ATM Safety Tips:

  1. Keep the PIN (Personal Identification Number) a secret. Choose a PIN other than your birthdate, phone or social security number.
  2. Select a well-lighted busy ATM that is protected, yet visible from the street.
  3. To avoid fake ATMs, select one you are familiar with.
  4. Be wary of any ATM that appears to be tampered with. If you have difficulty inserting your card, STOP. Use another machine and notify your bank.
  5. Never leave your receipt in the trash.
  6. Put your money away immediately, count it later.
  7. Be cautious if you are approached after a transaction. Go to a public place and stay there for at least 15 minutes if you think someone is following you.
  8. Never accept help from anyone, especially strangers who offer advice when your card gets ‘swallowed’ or if they crowd you. They may be trying to watch you enter your PIN code.
  9. Surrender your card and money upon demand if you are held up and report it to your local law enforcement department right away.
  10. If available, use an enclosed vestibule with windows or select an ATM that has a station guard, working security camera, emergency telephone and doors that lock.

Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from the National Child Safety pamphlet, and I give them full credit for this information. Please check out their website for more information on their programming.

Posted in Fraud Programming, Gambling Abusive Programming, Men's Programming, New York City Senior Programming, Prescription Drug Programs, Scamming and Fraud Programming, Senior Caregiver Programs, Senior Services, Support Services for Seniors, Uncategorized, Woman's Programming | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

PSE&G: Excess Flow Valve

PSE&G: Excess Flow Valve

PSE&G offers the installation of excess flow valves (EFV’s) on the natural gas service line that connects to your home. These valves are safety devices that reduce the amount of gas released if a line is damaged, most commonly during an excavation.

Frequently asked questions about EFV installations:

How can I get an EFV installed?

First, submit the form available at pseg.com/efv. If your natural gas equipment and service are compatible, you can make an appointment.

How do I know if I already have one installed?

If you see a metal tag on your meter set, you already have an EFV installed. If you don’t see the tag, it’s still possible that one may be installed. To find out if your service has an EFV or if it’s compatible, email ConstructionNorth@pseg.com.

Will my property be disturbed?

To install an EFV, we dig in the roadway in front of your property or near the curb in your lawn or sidewalk. It takes 3-6 hours to complete. PSE&G restores the disturbed area after the installation.

How much does it cost?

While subject to change, the cost is currently about $2,400 to $2,800.

Does the EFV prevent leaks on piping inside my home?

No. The EFV only provides added protection if you gas service experiences a sudden disruption due to damage from construction, roadwork or excavation.

How can I protect myself from a gas leak due to excavation damage?

Always call 811 to request a mark out before digging to avoid hitting underground utility lines. This includes planting a tree, installing a fence or even a mail box. The service is free and required by law. If you suspect a gas leak, call 911 or PSE&G at 1-800-880-PSEG (7734).

For more information, visit PSE&G.com/efv

*Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from a PSE&G pamphlet and I give them full credit for the information.

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Behavioral Health & Substance Use Disorder Treatment at Bergen New Bridge Medical Center

Behavioral Health & Substance Use Disorder Treatment at Bergen New Bridge Medical Center

Behavioral Health & Substance Use Disorder Treatment:

Mental health and substance use disorder problems affect all aspects of our lives. We may become so overwhelmed we cannot function day to day. Feelings of isolation, sadness and anxiety can make day to day life very challenging.

An individual with mental health issues may exhibit one or more of the following signs and symptoms: overwhelming sadness and despair, severe mood swings, excessive and uncontrolled anger, severe agitation, delusions and suicidal behavior and/or threats. People with addictions have a progressive disease, which has become a major health issue facing millions of Americans.

How we can help:

Bergen New Bridge Medical Center is a premier source for behavioral healthcare excellence and a teaching hospital with a well known, respected psychiatry residency program. Our diversified treatment programs offer individualized care in a warm, supportive atmosphere. Professional teams conduct a thorough evaluation to determine what is causing distress and how we can best help. Our highly skilled medical staff will identify potential underlying medical or biochemical causes for the illness,. The treatment team will after defining the treatment needs, work with the patient, family and other healthcare professionals to develop a course of treatment. Our mental health and substance use disorder treatment programs have skilled social workers and counselors and our programs offer treatment for co-occurring disorders for people with both mental health and substance abuse disorders. This interdisciplinary approach is unique to Bergen New Bridge and ensures the continuum of care throughout treatment.

Treatment Services:

Outpatient treatment for adult, child, geriatric and substance use disorder services include:

*Diagnostic assessment and evaluation

*Inpatient medical detoxification

*Medication stabilization and management

*Individual therapy

*Family therapy

*Group therapy

-Wellness groups

-Relapse prevention

-Dialectical Behavior Therapy Group (DBT) and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)

-Coping Skills

-Stress reduction

-Child/adolescent programs

We have the Level of Care you need:

Children Services:

Early intervention and treatment are essential to providing care needed for optimal results, yet younger patients are often reluctant to participate in the treatment process and frequently do not come forward with issues they may be having. The Bergen New Bridge team works closely with parents, families and appropriate school officials to provide resources to identify problems early on and set up successful treatment programs.

Treatment is available for patients, ages 5-17 who may exhibit any of the following symptoms:

*Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

*Bullying

*Depression

*Anger

*Anxiety

*Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)

*Bipolar disorder

Teen T.H.R.I.V.E. is Evergreen’s Adolesant Program that also offers substance use disorder treatment. Teen T.H.R.I.V.E. encompasses multiple levels of care beginning with early intervention, intensive outpatient as well as an aftercare component.

Outpatient Treatment: is available for a variety of mental health and substance use disorder issues and includes comprehensive evaluation, individual, group and family therapy as well as medication management.

The Hope & Resiliency Center for Youth Program: The Hope & Resiliency Center for Youth is a mental health program designed to meet unique mental health needs for at risk adolescents. The Hope & Resiliency Center for Youth provides an intensive outpatient in a level of intervention in both the frequency and the variety of services provided in traditional outpatient treatment. The Hope & Resiliency Center for Youth provides a range of services for adolescents to continue to attend their schools during the day and return to their homes in the evening while still receiving a high level of treatment, structure and support.

Consumer Self-Advocate Program:

To better meet the needs of our patients we use a process designed to enhance the collaboration between the patient and their physician in developing an assessment and treatment protocol. This Joint Commission best practice has proven to be a very successful approach for both patients and physicians in exploring new treatment options.

Intensive Outpatient Program: is designed to assist patients who are unable to control use with imminently dangerous consequences, despite active participation in less intensive care. The program requires nine or more hours of service a week to treat multidimensional instability. Evergreen has both day and evening tracks in which the patient meets for a minimum of three hours per day three times per week. The treatment team, including the patient, counselors and a psychiatrist, when needed will meet to develop an individualized treatment plan to help therapeutically address your specific needs and to provide an appropriate set of interventions.

Partial Hospitalization: is available for people who need intensive treatment but do not require 24 hour care. This comprehensive program provides structural treatment five days per week with five group sessions per day. Unlike inpatient care, partial hospitalization patients return home each evening. Partial hospitalization encompasses two tracks: Acute Partial Hospitalization focuses solely on intensive psychiatric treatment and MICA Partial Hospitalization focuses on dual diagnosis, i.e. psychiatric and substance use disorder treatment services.

Residential Treatment: is available for patients with needs, requiring intensive motivation strategies in a 24 hour setting. Average length of stay is approximately 21-28 days.

Detox Units: encompasses 84 beds designated to treat acute intoxication and potential withdrawal for patients who have become physically dependent on opiates, alcohol and benzodiazepines. Average length of stay is approximately five days. Evergreen’s detox mission is to ‘motivate change’ in the patient during their stay on the unit by having trained substance abuse counselors recommend and secure aftercare plans.

Medication Assisted Treatment:

Opioid addiction is a chronic, relapsing brain disease with detrimental psychological and physical effects. Effective treatment programs often focus on both aspects of addiction through counseling and medication.

VIVITROL Treatment: is one of our many treatments available for addiction management. The Behavioral Health Outpatient Clinic is one of the few clinics with providers who prescribe and have the staff to administer this injectable drug. VIVITROL is a non-addictive once monthly treatment proven to prevent relapse in opioid dependent patients when used with counseling following detoxification. VIVITROL block opioid receptors in the brain while you work with the psychological aspects of counseling.

Suboxone Treatment: is a medication-assisted treatment option offered by the Behavioral Health Outpatient Clinic. The treatment is a service offered in conjunction with group therapy. Patients who participate must follow up monthly with a psychiatrist, attend two group sessions a month and will be subject to urinalysis testing before receiving a prescription. Suboxone is formulated to relieve symptoms of opioid withdrawal and can help users of heroin to transition into treatment more effectively by preventing the painful withdrawal symptoms associated with heroin.

Treatment modalities include psychiatric and psychosocial assessments, individual, family and group therapy and support for parents.

Family Plays an Important Role:

When one person in a family suffers from a mental or emotional illness, everyone else in the family is affected. Stress and strains in relationships are intensified. We understand this and encourage family members to express their needs and feelings. We are committed to helping families participate in their loved one’s recovery process by encouraging active involvement in treatment and educational programs.

Getting the Help that You Need:

Referrals may be made by physicians, psychologists, social workers, mental health professionals, social service agencies, family members or friends. If you need our services, you may schedule an appointment through the Access Center (800-730-2762) without a referral. For people who have emotional difficulties requiring immediate attention, evalution is available 24 hours a day by skilled and compassionate Emergency Department staff. The decision to admit someone for inpatient treatment is made by a team of mental health professional led by a psychiatrist.

Access Center Available 24/7 800-730-2762

About Bergen New Bridge Medical Center:

Bergen New Bridge Medical Center (BNBMC) a clinical affiliate of Rutgers, is a 1070 bed hospital located at 230 East Ridgewood Avenue in Paramus, NJ. Founded in 1916, to treat patients with contagious diseases, the Medical Center is both the largest hospital and licensed nursing home in New Jersey and the fourth largest publicly-owned hospital in the nation.

Bergen New Bridge Medical Center, a not for profit safety net facility, provide high-quality comprehensive services, including acute care, behavioral health care and long term care to the greater Bergen County community. The Medical Center, including its Long Term Care Division, is fully accredited by The Joint Commission. Bergen New Bridge Medical Center is one of the largest medical facilities providing a continuum of care for the behavioral health community.

Bergen New Bridge Medical Center offers acute medical services, including 24/7 emergency department, surgical suites, physical rehabilitation, pharmacy, laboratory, radiologic services (including digital mammography) and more than 26 medical specialities available through its Ambulatory Care Center. The Medical Center is a Veterans Choice Provider proudly serving the healthcare needs of veterans. Learn more at NewBridgeHealth.org.

https://www.newbridgehealth.org/

Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from the New Bridge Medical Center pamphlet and I give them full credit for the information. Please contact them directly for information on their services.

Posted in Bergen County NJ Programs, Caregiving Programs, Corporate Programming for the public, Health and Life Support Services, Men's Programming, New Jersey Senior Programming, Senior Caregiver Programs, Senior Services, Support Services for Seniors, Uncategorized, Woman's Programming | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

COVID-19 Vaccines and Boosters: Information for Bergen County Seniors

COVID-19 Vaccines and Boosters: Information for Bergen County Seniors in Bergen County, NJ

Why do you need a COVID-19 Vaccine?

Risks increases with age. The risk for severe illness with COVID-19 increases with age, with older adults at highest risk.

Older adults are more likely to get very sick from COVID-19. Getting very sick means that older adults with COVID-19 might need hospitalization, intensive care or a ventilator to help them breathe or they might even die. The risk increases for people in their 50’s and increases in 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. People 85 and older are most likely to get very sick.

Other factors can also make you more likely to get severely ill with COVID-19, such as having certain underlying medical conditions. If you have an underlying medical condition, you should continue to follow your treatment plan, unless advised differently by your health care provider.

Protect yourself & others from getting COVID-19:

Older adults and those who live with, visit or provide care for them need to take steps to protect themselves from getting COVID-19.

Get vaccinated as soon as possible.

*COVID-19 vaccines are effective in preventing COVID-19 and are recommended for everyone 12 years of age and older.

*If you are fully vaccinated, you can resume activities that you did prior to the pandemic without wearing a mask or staying six feet apart, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal or territorial laws, rules and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.

To schedule an appointment, visit: http://www.BergenCovidVaccine.com

https://www.bergencovidvaccine.com/

https://www.co.bergen.nj.us/health-promotion/2019-novel-corona-virus

How to get a COVID-19 Vaccine: Information for Bergen County Services

*County of Bergen Vaccine Help Desk: For questions regarding vaccination appointments or to make a homebound vaccination request, please call Albert Ferrara at (201) 336-2707 or email HealthPromotion@co.bergen.nj.us.

*Bergen New Bridge Medical Center-Paramus: Schedule a vaccine appointment at http://www.bergencovidvaccine.com.

*NJ COVID Vaccine Finder: for all other New Jersey locations: htttps://covid19.nj.gov/pages/finder

*NJ Senior Vaccine Hotline: Call 1-855-429-1168: if you are 65 or older, you can call a special senior hotline from 8:00am-8:00pm for vaccination scheduling.

*Bergen County Community Transportation-Call (201) 368-5955: Bergen County Community Transportation provides free rides to vaccination appointments. Call (201) 368-5955 to schedule your ride.

*NJ Homebound Vaccine Request-Call 1-855-568-0545:

If you are unable to leave the home to receive a COVID-19 vaccine or are the healthcare provider or family caregiver of someone who is homebound, you may request an in-home vaccination appointment by completing a form at covid19.nj.gov/homeboundvax (English) or covid19.nj.gov/homeboundvaxes (Spanish). For assistance completing the form by phone, please call the NJ COVID-19 Vaccine Call Center at 1-855-568-0545.

After you submit the completed form, the NJ Department of Health will share information with a home health agency, local health department or other vaccination providers and you will be contacted to schedule an in-home vaccination appointment.

If there are any unvaccinated household or family members in need of vaccination, vaccine providers will also do their best to schedule vaccination for caregivers and other members of the household of housebound person(s). Please confirm this need in the online form.

Some home health agencies are currently vaccinating patients-if you are currently receiving services from a home health care agency you should also inquire with your provider about vaccination options.

NJ Vaccine Call Center-call 1-855-568-0545:

The Vaccine Call Center (1-855-568-0545) is available to register individuals in the NJ Vaccine Scheduling System, answer questions about the vaccine, provide contact information for sites, check registration status and update registration information. The hotline is open from 8:00am-8:00pm every day and can help callers in more than 240 different languages.

Vaccine Cost: FREE

There are no out of pocket costs for the vaccine. COVID-19 vaccines will be made available to individuals regardless of insurance coverage status. Individuals won’t pay coinsurance, deductibles or co-payments.

Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from the Bergen County New Jersey Department of Senior Services pamphlet and I give them full credit for the information. Please call the numbers or email them through their website for more information on this.

Posted in Bergen County NJ Programs, COVID-19 Information, Health and Life Support Services, Men's Programming, Senior Caregiver Programs, Senior Services, Uncategorized, Woman's Programming | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Osler Connect: Improving Annual Wellness

Osler Connect: Improving Annual Wellness

You’ve been recommended for Osler Connect. How this program can benefit you:

*Receive a personalized health plan

*Map out your future visits

*Stay on track with your preventative screenings

*Develop a greater relationship with your provider

*Delivers peace of mind about your care

Osler Medical Group:

Contact us today to get started with Osler Connect!

288 Boulevard

Hasbrouck Heights, NJ 07604

(201) 288-6781

https://www.oslerheightsmedical.com/

https://www.facebook.com/OslerMedicalGroup/

Disclaimer: This information on this program was taken directly from the Osler Medical Group’s pamphlet and I give them full credit for the this. Please call them directly for more information on the program.

Posted in Bergen County NJ Programs, Health and Life Support Services, Men's Programming, New Jersey Senior Programming, Senior Caregiver Programs, Senior Services, Support Services for Seniors, Uncategorized, Woman's Programming | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment