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Four Key Steps to Caring for a Parent With Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease that affects the central nervous system. Damage to the nerve fibers or myelin (protective layers of a type of fat that surround nerve fibers) leads to a lack of information getting from the brain to the rest of the body.

 

Caregiver in Brownsburg IN: Multiple Sclerosis

Caregiver in Brownsburg IN: Multiple Sclerosis

 

People with MS often experience problems with vision, gait, muscle strength, muscle control, and fatigue. MS may cause numbness and tingling in the face, arms, and legs. It can lead to constipation, depression, emotional imbalances, pain, and cognitive issues.

When you’re caring for a parent who has MS, there are four key areas where you’ll need to focus attention. They include exercise and physical therapy, diet, sleep routines, and de-stressing techniques.

 

De-Stressing Techniques

Depression and anxiety are common after a diagnosis of MS. Medications may help, but there are other ways to de-stress. Your parent may find relaxation breathing is helpful. Aromatherapy, time spent outside in the fresh air and sun, and some of the exercise from Tai Chi and Yoga are also useful.

It also helps to have someone there to listen. If your parent is feeling particularly anxious or stressed, encourage venting. Let your mom or dad talk about the things that are causing stress. Listen without judgment.

 

Diet

A diet won’t improve MS, but it can help with depression, anxiety, and ensure they’re getting enough protein for muscle health. Look for a diet that is high in fiber, protein, and fresh produce. Many doctors recommend the principles found in the Mediterranean Diet (fresh vegetables, olive oil, garlic, seafood, and dried beans) as being the best overall plan to follow.

 

Exercise

The muscle weakness, numbness, and loss of muscle control all impact gait and mobility. Your parent will likely work with a physical therapist to improve mobility. At home, you need to make sure your mom or dad is practicing these exercises.

Being there to support your parent while taking a walk is important. You may find the use of a cane or walker is needed. You can offer moral support and physical support while your parent gets used to this assistive device.

 

Sleep Routines

As you age, sleep patterns change. It’s recommended that all adults get 7 or 8 hours of sleep per night. To help make sure this happens, set a sleep routine that aids your mom or dad.

They may find a cup of herbal tea a couple of hours before bedtime, 30 minutes of reading in bed, and then soft ocean sounds help them drift off and stay asleep. Find a sleep routine that works well and make sure that routine doesn’t get interrupted often.

As the symptoms progress, you may need help with your parent’s care. That’s normal. Professional caregivers are trained to help your mom or dad with tasks like personal care, companionship, housekeeping, and transportation. Call a home care agency to arrange caregivers to help out as often as is needed.

 

If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring a Caregiver in Brownsburg, IN, please call the caring staff at Home Services Unlimited. Serving Greater Indianapolis Area. Call for Immediate Info & Assistance: (317) 471-0760

Etelka Froymovich, RN, MHA

Owner & Founder at Home Services Unlimited
Etelka Froymovich founded Home Services Unlimited in 1997
As a practicing Registered Nurse, Etelka was keenly aware of a void in quality patient care that could be provided in the home. She embarked upon a journey to develop a home health care agency that would exceed all expectations and become a trusted partner to physicians and patients.

A Distinguished Career From Nurse to Director of Nursing to President of Home Services Unlimited

Etelka’s distinguished career followed a logical progression to her position as President of Home Services Unlimited. She graduated as a nurse practitioner with a Bachelor of Nursing (RN) in 1972 from Meshgorya University in the Ukraine, close to where she lived with her family. She married her husband Phil in 1973 and decided in 1977 that they would relocate to the United States to be closer to family and to come to this land of opportunity. With an eagerness to continue her budding career, Etelka sat for and passed her Boards in the U.S. in 1979.

A Love and Talent for Working with the Elderly

Etelka began her nursing career in the U.S. at Colonial Crest, now part of Golden Living, where she was the In-service Coordinator, the Director of Training and Education and Director of Nursing, a position she occupied for several years.

With a group of partners, she co-founded Adept Corporation, which operated group homes for the mentally challenged. The business was successful and in 1996, Etelka sold her share to return to her roots, caring for the elderly.

In January of 1997, Etelka opened Home Services Unlimited as a fully licensed business to provide home health care. In her quest to learn to do better for her patients, she had already obtained a Masters in Healthcare Administration (MHA) in May of 1990 from the College of St. Francis. As President of Home Services Unlimited, Inc., Etelka guides the trusted, experienced care model Home Services Unlimited uses to continue providing excellent home health care.

Giving Back to the Community of Indianapolis

Volunteering for community services is a high priority for Etelka. Her memberships include the Indiana Association of Rehabilitation Facilities, Executive Women in Health Care and the Indiana Association for Home and Hospice Care, where she is a member of the Board of Directors.

Etelka has also served on the Board of Directors with Hooverwood Home, a highly regarded geriatric facility, since 1997 and as the President for 2005-2006. Through her community work, she has received several awards and accolades, including the Nora McFarland award in 2002, from the Indiana Association of Home and Hospice Care.

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