Foot Care Info-Sheet for Seniors

Most people are born with healthy feet. But three out of four people develop serious foot problems as they age – putting their independence and well-being at risk. Healthy feet contribute to your safety and health. How?
  • Feet that are healthy and pain free help you keep your balance. Good balance can prevent falls, a major cause of injury and hospitalization; some falls result in disability or death.
  • Healthy feet also allow you to stay active. When your feet are too sore to walk, you lose strength and become at greater risk for falls. Walking is the perfect exercise to keep your weight down, prevent blood clots and keep your bones and muscles strong.
  • Keeping an eye on your feet can even give you an early warning about serious health problems such as diabetes, arthritis, nerve damage and poor blood circulation.

Basic Foot Care

Foot pain may keep you from enjoying life and staying active. Many foot problems can be avoided if you:
  • Check your feet every day. Don't wait until your feet hurt. Take a few minutes every day to look for cuts, blisters, bruises, sores, infected toenails or swelling. Use a small mirror if bending over is a problem, or ask someone for help.
  • Wash your feet every day. Use warm water. Don't soak them longer than 10 minutes, or your skin will get dry and start to crack. Dry well between your toes.
  • Keep your feet soft and smooth. Use unscented cream on the tops and bottoms of your feet if the skin is dry and cracked.
  • Wipe off excess cream and don't apply between your toes. Use talcum powder if your feet sweat a lot.
  • Wear comfortable shoes and socks. Many people have foot problems because their shoes don't fit, don't give proper support or don't have enough grip on the ground.

    Socks help keep your feet dry. Wear a clean pair every day. Avoid socks with ridges or an elastic at top; they can irritate or restrict circulation.
  • Be active every day. Walking is the best way to keep you, and your feet, healthy because you can do it anytime, anywhere – for free!

    To increase circulation, prevent cramps and keep your muscles in good shape, try these exercises:
    • while sitting, pick up marbles with your toes
    • while holding onto a table or chair back, get up on your tiptoes, then rock back to your heels, 20 times
    • while sitting, alternate pointing your toes toward your nose with pointing your toes downward; rotate your ankles in circles, first in one direction, then the other
  • Take care of your toenails. Cut or file your nails regularly with appropriate nail care tools. Trim them straight across and never shorter than the end of your toe

Home Care Assistance offers the highest quality 24/7 live-in home care in the Region of Halton (Oakville, Burlington, Halton Hills, and Milton), Region of Peel (Mississauga, Brampton and Caledon), Hamilton and surrounding areas.

The Burden of IBD in Canada

In the fall of 2008, the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of Canada (CCFC) released its report, “The Burden of Inflammatory Bowel Disease in Canada.” This landmark document revealed that over 200,000 Canadians suffer from inflammatory bowel disease. IBD affects more people than multiple sclerosis or HIV and is almost as prevalent as epilepsy and Type 1 diabetes. In spite of that, IBD remains a closet disease, shrouded in silence and relatively unknown.

Why is that? Perhaps it is because people with Crohn’s disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC) are reluctant to speak out about health issues that have been taboo in polite conversation. It’s time for that to stop. We need to bring this conversation out into the open and talk about a disease that strikes more than 9,000 new patients every year.

Canada has one of the highest incidences of IBD in the world. With an annual cost of $1.8 billion to individuals, their families and society at large, the burden of IBD is significant. In 2008, costs covered by the health care system were estimated at $753 million; including expenses such as hospitalization, surgery, medication and physician visits. Not included in these estimates, but having as real a system impact, are things like emergency visits, lab costs and other consultations with other health professionals such as nurse practitioners, dietitians and social workers.

In addition to the direct expenses to the health care system, it is estimated that IBD incurs more than a $1 billion dollars every year in indirect costs. These include short and long-term work absences, productivity losses, caregiver work absences and patient out-of-pocket expenses related to care, nutritional products, medication and complementary therapies. 

Beyond the economic impact, the emotional suffering inflicted by these chronic diseases is incalculable. Quality of life, career choices, sense of self-worth, intimacy and personal freedoms are all affected when someone develops IBD. Over and above those concerns, the risk of premature death for IBD sufferers is 47 per cent higher than the general public, and the risk of developing colorectal cancer is also elevated. Read more

Click here to learn more and get help.

Elderly IBD patients are less likely to present with symptoms of abdominal pain, diarrhea, and anemia.8-10 More frequent symptoms include weight loss, bleeding, fever, and paradoxical constipation (with distal UC, which is more common than pancolitis).11 Colonic CD is more common than small-bowel or ileocolonic disease and has a lower incidence of fever and strictures than small-bowel disease.9,12,13 Elderly patients have a lower incidence of IBD family history and, as expected, a greater incidence of osteoporosis, but their incidence of extraintestinal IBD manifestations is similar to that of younger patients.8,10,12,14 However, a disparity exists in the literature, with some reports claiming that there is no difference in disease location. Read more

Home Care Assistance offers the highest quality 24/7 live-in home care in the Region of Halton (Oakville, Burlington, Halton Hills, and Milton), Region of Peel (Mississauga, Brampton and Caledon), Hamilton and surrounding areas.

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