Top 10 Essential Items for a Caregiver Ready Bag

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Top 10 Items to Include in a Caregiver Ready Bag

By Ted Holmgren, 9:00 am on March 20, 2017

Caregivers need to be ready for medical emergencies. Keeping a caregiver bag with you at all times could help you manage countless situations, ranging from minor cuts to misplaced chargers.

Maintaining a high quality of life can be challenging for some seniors, but professional caregivers can help them obtain this goal. Families can trust in Scottsdale, AZ, elder care experts to help their elderly loved ones focus on lifestyle choices that increase the chances of living a longer and healthier life. Here is a closer look at 10 items you might want to keep in your caregiver ready bag.

1. Contact List

Even if you have a comprehensive contact list in your smartphone, you should still keep a hard copy in your caregiver ready bag. The contact list should contain numbers and addresses for doctors, close relatives, and nearby emergency centers. You might also want to keep a list of your own emergency contacts just in case you are injured or in an accident. 

2. Extra Medication

Any prescription medication vital to your loved one’s health should be kept in a sealed container inside your caregiver bag. When your loved one gets a new prescription, you can simply replace the spare medication. At the very least, you should have enough medication to last until you can get the prescription filled again. 

Even if your loved one stays at home, he or she may run out of prescription pills or forget to take them. Skipping medications can have a negative impact on your loved one’s health and affect his or her independence. Older adults who need help maintaining their independence while living at home can benefit from having a home caregiver. Scottsdale, AZ, seniors increase their chances of aging in place safely and comfortably when they have a trusted professional to rely on.

3. Spare Universal Charger

Humans have become reliant on electronics, and no one wants to find themselves in an emergency situation without a phone. A spare universal charger will also allow you to charge medical devices such as glucose meters. As an alternative, you can keep a portable power pack in your bag. 

4. Healthy Snacks

Some seniors have a difficult time controlling their blood sugar when they go out, and having low blood sugar levels could increase their risk of falling and hurting themselves. Any healthy snacks you put in your caregiver bag should stay good for at least a few months. Trail mix, popcorn, granola bars, and rice chips are all great options for a quick and healthy snack. 

5. Antibacterial Hand Gel

As people grow older, it can become more difficult to fight off bacteria encountered in public places. To keep harmful bacteria at bay, you can keep a small bottle of antibacterial hand gel in your bag. Seniors should try to sanitize their hands before eating, whenever they shake hands, and after they touch door knobs. 

6. Travel Toiletries

Many stores sell small travel kits that include a wide variety of toiletries. Not only are these kits perfect for seniors, but their caregivers can use them as well. These travel kits should contain a few key toiletries such as sanitary wipes, deodorant, and moisturizer.

7. Over-the-Counter Painkillers

It is a good idea for caregivers to keep a handful of painkillers in their pockets or ready bags. According to a long-term study conducted at Harvard Medical School, aspirin might delay a heart attack if the symptoms are caught early. When taking aspirin for a heart attack, seniors must chew it so it enters their bloodstream quicker.

6. Change of Clothes

When caring for a senior, you never know when you will be stuck somewhere for a day or longer, which is why you need to keep a spare change of clothes for both you and your loved one. The clothes you pack should be comfortable so they don’t interfere with any injuries your loved one has sustained. 

9. Water

A few extra bottles of water can be invaluable when you go out somewhere. In addition to hydrating, you can also use the water to wash your hands or fill the radiator in your vehicle. Before putting any water in the radiator, you need to make sure the water is purified and is free from additives. 

10. Entertainment

Getting stuck in a hospital or waiting room can be boring without something to keep yourself busy. E-readers are a great option because their batteries generally last for days. You can also pack a few extra books, magazines, knitting supplies, or crossword puzzles.

Seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and other health conditions may need special care. As a family caregiver, you might feel overwhelmed with your caregiving duties at times and forget to include certain items in your ready bag. Consider hiring a professional caregiver for your aging loved one so you can take a break from your caregiving duties. For dementia care Scottsdale, AZ, families can count on, reach out to Home Care Assistance. Our compassionate caregivers use revolutionary memory care programs to help seniors stave off the progression of dementia, and they can also assist with a wide variety of important everyday tasks, including bathing, grooming, exercise, and cooking. To create a customized care plan for your senior loved one, call us at 480.448.6215.