The Elderly Kind of Blues

Seniors & Mental Health

Mental health is widely considered a new age concept, which is obscure to many members of the aging populations. Older generations ignored mental health issues and were more likely to address physical ailments. In regards to uncomfortable feelings, words such as “melancholy” were likely used to instead of “depression.” Older generations are more likely to express physical versus mental complaints. The avoidance of addressing mental health issues is linked to the extreme stigmatization of mental illness in previous decades. Unfortunately, the ongoing neglect of mental health problems becomes a habit transmitted to younger generations. Children of the aging populations often become caretakers and key advocates for their elder’s well-being, but find themselves covering all the basis of their parent’s health and well-being except mental health. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, more than two million Americans above the age 65 suffer from some form of depression. The elderly population is one of the most vulnerable populations to developing depression due to the experience of significant losses related to death, physical ability, and independence. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, in the United States, less than 5% of older adults living in the community show signs of depression, the percentage rises to over 13% among those who require home health care. Considering the extreme risk and vulnerability of the elderly population choosing home care that addresses the well-being of the whole person is essential. Holistic home-care is a new era approach to senior care that tailors care to enhance one’s social, emotional and physical well-being. Finding senior care that treats the whole person can be like searching for a needle in a haystack in major metropolitan areas such as Washington, DC.  This article will discuss the manifestation of depression among the elderly and the benefits of holistic care.Senior-Care-in-Washington-DC

Aging & Depression

It is common for people to experience depression at various points in their life in response to negative life events such as ended relationships, financial hardship, and interpersonal conflict. However, clinical depression manifest in mood and physical symptoms. Research shows that older adults are more likely to label their “down feelings” as pessimism or helplessness versus depression. Additionally, older versus young adults are less likely to endorse statements related to “feeling down” or “blue.” Older adults commonly display withdraw, less communication, increased sleeping, expressionlessness, and bodily neglect. In older adults, physical symptoms often accompany depression including, coronary heart disease, dementia, diabetes, hyperthyroidism, and cancer. Life events related to loss of loved ones and independence can exacerbate these symptoms. Unlike younger adults, older adults often lose their ability to engage in coping behaviors such as exercise, outings with friends, and travel to alleviate mental and physical symptoms. These circumstances leave older adults not only at greater risk of developing severe depression but little means to mitigate the suffering.

Senior Care & Depression

Nursing home residents and older adults with chronic illness are at greater risk of developing depression. This risk is due in large part to the lack of quality care available in nursing facilities with an unbalanced caregiver to resident ratios. This imbalance diminishes the amount of emotional, social, and physical support available to clients. Many nursing home facilities plan rigorously to design communities that cultivate social and physical well-being, only to find that a large percentage of residents don’t adequately utilize all that the facility has to offer. This underutilization is mainly due to physical and mental declines that limit their access and interest. Senior care facilities in major metropolitan cities such as Washington, DC find themselves overwhelmed and falling short of providing quality care as their mission statements often promise, due to understaffing and short-sighted approaches.

Holistic Care

Holistic care is a growing approach adopted by senior care providers in efforts to improve the quality of life of the aging population. Through this approach, caregivers are trained to assess and address the social, emotional, physical, and in some cases spiritual needs of the client.  Many nursing home facilities have begun to adopt the holistic approach to senior care. However, like any other service industry, quantity often reduces quality. Philia is a home-care agency that adopts the holistic approach to senior care offered only on a 1:1 basis to ensure quality. In addition to assisting with ADL’s, caregivers are trained to incorporate nutritional meal preparation, tailored exercise regimen, activity engagement, and emotional support. Each client’s care plan is designed to enhance their quality of life and well-being in oppose to maintain their present state of health. Holistically trained caregivers are trained to recognize the signs of depression specific to older adults and implement interventions that treat the physical, social, and emotional manifestations. The mind and body are interconnected, each impacting the other dynamically throughout one’s life. Quality senior care addresses both physical and psychological aspects of a person, recognizing that this is the key to total well-being.


Cavanaugh, J., & Blanchard-Fields, F. (2014). Adult development and aging. Nelson Education.

Friedhoff, A. J., Ballenger, J., Bellack, A. S., Carpenter, W. T., Chui, H. C., Dobrof, R., & Merikangas, K. R. (1992). Diagnosis and treatment of depression in late life. JAMA268(8), 1018-1024.

Zarit, S. H., & Zarit, J. M. (2012). Mental disorders in older adults: Fundamentals of assessment and treatment. Guilford Press.

Summertime Is Replenish Time: Benefits of Getting Seniors Outdoors in Washington DC

Replenish Time

Overtime as seniors lose independence they are more like to stay indoors. Moreover, after completing a slew of duties, senior caregivers often overlook the importance of getting seniors outdoors to get more sunshine during the summer months. During the summer months, increased daylight hours allow us to take advantage of more time in direct sunlight. Winter months cause a significant decline in vitamin D, which leads to a weakened immune system, decreased absorption of calcium and in some cases depression also known as the “winter blues”. Seniors are at greater risk of broken bones and depressive episodes, which makes vitamin D exposure essential. In addition, higher levels of oxygen from being outdoors is essential for health brain functioning. In the Washington, DC area, caregivers often have more responsibilities and a higher caregiver to client ratio. These conditions decrease the likelihood that clients receive more 1:1 time to ensure their overall well-being. It is essential that families hire senior caregivers that are holistically trained to provide care that treats all of their needs to increase their health and longevity.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is a crucial element that aids in the absorption of calcium. As seniors age they are more prone to broken bones from slips and falls. Frequent injuries in seniors are linked to rapid health declines. Many clients have care plans in place to help reduce their risk of slips and falls. However, in some cases this is inevitable. Preventive healthcare regimens are critical in minimizing the risk of broken bones when seniors slip or fall.  Studies have shown that vitamin D is also an essential element in impacting serotonin levels, a neurotransmitter that decreases symptoms of depression. Depression and other mood changes are common amongst seniors and are linked to rapid physical and mental health declines. Although vitamin supplements can be helpful, vitamin D obtained naturally through sunlight has shown to be the best way for the body to receive its benefits. Thus, getting seniors outdoors is crucial to aid their vitamin D absorption. Holistic caregivers are more knowledgeable on the holistic benefits of getting seniors outdoors in the sun. However, elderly clients are at greater risk of develop sun burns and even skin cancer due to decreased thickness in the skin.


There is no air that feels fresher than summer air. Summer time is the best time to indulge in higher levels of oxygen. A study conducted by the US National Centre for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, showed that oxygen levels change with the season and peak during the summer. This believes to be attributed to higher output of plants that have blossomed. Oxygen is a crucial element for our functioning, as is assist with decreasing stress, Increasing alertness, and energy. Additionally, oxygen deficiencies are linked to memory loss and overall declines in brain functioning. As seniors age energy levels decline and fatigue becomes a common experience associated with old age. However, engaging in deep breathing and being outdoors are great ways to combat fatigue and increase energy. Senior caregivers must provide a regimen that works to increase oxygen levels to maintain healthy functioning. This is even more critical for clients struggling with severe forms of dementia.

Helpful Tips for Senior Caregivers in Washington DC:
  • Senior Care workers should plan activities such as puzzle, dominoes and knitting outside.
  • For immobile clients, lower the AC and open as many windows as possible in the house.
  • Help clients plant new flowers or produce to get them interested in going outside to track growth.
  • Invite pet owners in the Washington DC neighborhood, and encourage clients to go outside to pet them.
  • Senior Caregivers should encourage clients by teaching them how oxygen improves their health.
  • Be sure to put a generous amount of sunscreen on clients to reduce the risk of sunburn.
  • Make sure seniors drink plenty of water to reduce the risk of dehydration.



Spring Cleaning and Organization In The Washington DC Area

It’s that time of the year again to start thinking about spring cleaning, which likely means some serious decluttering, reorganization, scrubbing and polishing. Spring is the time that we all begin thinking about cleaning and organizing our homes. Whether you love it or hate it, there’s no denying that a good spring cleaning is a worthwhile exercise.


But did you know that it can also benefit your health and wellbeing? Below are some reasons why clearing out those closets and grabbing the polish can actually good for you. Let the cleaning commence!

In the Washington, D.C area, many residents lead busy schedules that prevent them from routine spring cleaning as other responsibilities become prioritized in the “to-do-list”. Spring Cleaning can increase productivity. Making the effort to declutter and organize your home or office can save you tons of time looking for or replacing lost items in the future. Organization makes you more productive, while the cleaning process itself can increase energy levels. We all need to learn to let go. If you haven’t used something since the last spring clean, it might be time to say goodbye. Cleaning can be a great way for Senior Care professionals to get clients active and engaged.

Spring cleaning is also healthy. Many elderly individuals struggle with allergies but already take a slew of medications leaving little room for allergy medication. A good spring clean can help you avoid allergy symptoms and lower Asthma attacks. Removing allergens from the home can make you feel healthier, especially at a time when allergies are rife. You want to try to get those hard to reach places too where dust build up. Make sure though to ask for help moving big pieces of furniture or climbing up ladders when going for those hard-to-reach spots.


Spring cleaning can make you happy. Taking the time to thoroughly clean and maintain a tidy home makes people happier, studies have shown. The act of cleaning provides a sense of satisfaction, which in turn can put you in a good mood. Also, putting on some of your favorite music while cleaning can make it even more fun!

Spring cleaning can help to reduce stress. Cleaning and organizing your personal spaces lets you enjoy a tidier and more organized environment and this can relieve stress. Levels of stress can also be reduced during the act itself as cleaning is considered to be therapeutic. But make sure to always be realistic. If it’s all getting too much, take a break. It’s not a race after all.


Lastly, Spring leaning can help you to focus. Those who make a point of clearing out the clutter once in a while are able to free up the brain for more essential decision-making, according to a study carried out by the founder of America’s Anxiety Disorder Center. A thorough clean helps to clear your mind of things that need to be done around the house and makes it easier to focus on other more important things. You should concentrate though on one room at a time to make sure you get the job done properly

Arts and Crafts

Home Care in Washington D.C.


St. Patrick’s Day Wreath     

This craft is fun for older children (and adults!) – Age 6+.  There are quite a few steps that younger kids (Age 2+) can help with, but they won’t able to do the craft independently.  This is a good family project!


Wire coat hanger
14 to 16 tp rolls
Optional:  Saint Patrick’s Day color paint like shades of green or colors of the rainbow (we used shades of green)
construction paper (you could also use craft foam or white paper if you’re using our templates)


ADULT:  Take each toilet roll and cut a slit HALFWAY through.
Optional:  Paint toilet paper rolls a saint Patrick’s day color.  You can see from the finished craft that not too much shows through, but my kids have fun painting, so we painted them all shades of green.
Let dry.

ADULT:  Bend the coat hanger to form a circle.
Using the slits cut halfway through the rolls, slide each of your tp rolls onto the hanger to form a big circle of tp rolls.

Optional:  Take a bit of masking or scotch tape and tape the tp rolls together.  (tape the openings of the tp rolls on the inside of the circle together).  This will keep the rolls from spinning around while you’re working.  If you decide not to do this, the paper shamrocks and rainbows will keep everything from spinning on the finished craft.

You can either print the templates below and cut them out or do what we did:
Fold a piece of green construction paper into 4.  Trace a shamrock onto the front of the folded paper and cut out (that way one cut/trace makes 4 shamrocks).  Repeat so you have 8 shamrocks.
Fold a piece of red construction paper into 4.  Trace a large circle onto the front of the folded paper and cut out (giving you 4 circles).  Repeat with yellow construction paper, only make a smaller circle — then green, then blue.  Glue the circles together (red, yellow, green, blue) and then cut in half.  You’ll have 8 rainbows!
One person can be doing this part while another is assembling the tp roll wreath base.  This works well if you have crafters of different ages (the base is more difficult than cutting out hearts).
Tie a bow on the top if you want to.

If you’re like me, right now you’re envisioning all the different types of wreathes you could make this way… Halloween with jack’o’lanterns, ghosts and bats, Christmas with holly leaves and berries, Autumn with leaves, etc, etc.  I’m sure you’ll see templates/instructions for various wreaths made along these basic lines pop up on the site over the next year or two!


Leprechaun Hat Cookies


Recipe:  From Betty Crocker


1-pouch Betty Crocker™ sugar cookie mix

½ cup butter or margarine, softened

1 egg

1 container (1 lb) Betty Crocker™ Rich & Creamy vanilla frosting

¼ teaspoon Betty Crocker™ green gel food color

24 large marshmallows

24 small (1-inch) chewy chocolate candies

12 small green gumdrops



  • Heat oven to 375°F. In medium bowl, stir cookie mix, butter and egg until soft dough forms. Roll dough in 24 (1-inch) balls. On ungreased cookie sheets, place 2 inches apart.
  • Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until edges are light golden brown. Immediately place marshmallow on each cookie. Remove from cookie sheets to cooling racks. Cool completely, about 15 minutes.
  • In microwavable bowl, microwave frosting on High 30 seconds. Stir; frosting should be a thick spoonable glaze. Stir food color into frosting, adding more if needed to achieve desired color. Spoon warm frosting over each cookie, coating completely and allowing excess to drip off. Let stand 20 minutes to set.
  • Roll chocolate candies into ropes. Flatten with rolling pin into 1/8-inch-thick ribbons. Cut into strips with scissors to resemble hat bands; arrange around base of marshmallow on each cookie. Cut gumdrops crosswise in half (reshaping as needed). Press cut side onto hat band. Lift cookies onto serving platter with pancake turner, leaving excess frosting behind. Store in airtight container.


If you or an aging loved one are considering home care in Washington D.C., please call the friendly staff at Philia Care today at 202-607-2525.

February Newsletter – Articles

Home Care in Washington D.C.


The Power of Love

For many years love has been assumed in different cultures to be a powerful aspect of human connectedness. When love is adequately Home-Care-in-Washington-D.C.communicated it can have a long lasting impact on the social, emotional and cognitive flourishing of children. Due to advancements in scientific technology the powerful implications for love has been supported in studies. In a study, children of nurturing mothers had hippocampal volumes 10 percent larger than children whose mothers were not as nurturing. Research has suggested a link between a larger hippocampus and better memory.


According to Donaldson and Westerman (1986), children first begin centering their concepts of love around objects or events. For example, a child may define love by how often their parents give them their favorite foods or toys. However, as the brain further develops a more concrete understanding of love is based on memories and attitudes. For example, Mom cooked me soup and held my hand all night while I was sick last winter. Additionally children begin to learn how to deliberately demonstrate their emotions for others. The adequate communication of love can make a more profound impact on the child’s development.



Love Language

According to Gary Chapman, there are 5 love languages in which we communicate our love and appreciation for each other. These languages include; words of affirmation, quality time, physical touch, receiving gifts and acts of service. Each person has a primary love language in which they communicate their feelings for others. Gary posits that conflict or disconnect arises when families, singles or couples are not aware of each other’s primary love language. For example, a mother’s love language might be receiving gifts, thus she may purchase extravagant new toys and gadgets for her child. However, her child’s primary love language may be quality time. The child may feel like their mother is not showing genuine love because she expressed love through gifts versus spending quality time. These disconnects in communication of love can hinder the ability for people to effectively bond and establish a harmonious relationship. The relationship between parent and child serves as a template for later relationships both professionally and personally. The ability to show love and appreciation for others that may not speak your primary love language can enhance leadership and social skills. For example, a teacher that recognizes her discouraged students love language is words of affirmation may be tactful in offering words of encouragement to improve their confidence and motivation.



Sweet Benefits

The ability to effectively communicate love can increase language skills and emotional intelligence. When children are prompted to communicate their feelings and empathize with others wants and needs, they develop a higher understanding of social engagement.  Acquiring the ability to effectively communicate love enhances friendships and relationships. These skills allow others to feel appreciated and affirmed. Children often struggle with identifying and communicating their feelings about themselves and others. Teaching children how to recognize and demonstrate various love languages enables them to recognize and express love in various arenas, leading to a more fulfilled life at home, school and extracurricular.



Tips for Learning Your Child’s Love Language


  • Provide your child the opportunity to choose which way they would like you to express your love. For example, ask them if they would rather spend time together at the park or have you bake them their favorite cookies.
  • Learn your child’s primary love language and focus on that one.
  • Model the use of love language with other friends and family members.
  • Quality time: for boys set up a man-cave night or tea-bake night with girls.
  • Affirmation: create little encouragement sticky notes and place them in your child’s lunch box.
  • Physical touch: Every now and then join your child in his or her bed and cuddle with them.
  • Receiving gifts: create a photo collage or timeline for your child’s accomplishments.
  • Acts of service: Bake your child’s favorite cake, cookies or cook his/her favorite dish.
  • If you are struggling to identify your child’s primary love language strive to balance to use of all them as frequently as possible.



If you or an aging loved one are considering home care in Washington D.C., please call the friendly staff at Philia Care today at 202-607-2525.

Newsletter for November

Home Care in Washington D.C.


An Attitude of Gratitude & Heart of Thankfulness

Today we live in a society in which instant gratification is at our fingertips or just one tap of away. It can be challenging to avoid conditioning children have an attitude of expectation and entitlement. There are many great psychological and social benefits to maintaining an attitude of gratitude. Ultimately, maintaining an attitude of gratitude cultivates a conditioned heart of thankfulness.


What Have You Done for Me Lately? Teaching Gratitude

According to Barbara Lewis, young children are typically self-centered or ego-centric by nature. Their self-centered nature can be manifested in tantrums, emotional outburst and refusal to share or cooperate with others. Around age 2-3 children are able to express thankfulness for objects such as toys or food. At this age it can be challenging to help children express thankfulness or identify instances to be thankful when tangible objects are not related. By age 4, children may begin to understand the concept of being thankful not only for material things but for acts of kindness, love and caring. These attributes are fostered by consistent parental efforts to prompt their children to recognize instances in which to express gratitude.


Cultivating an Attitude of Gratitude

Fostering an attitude of gratitude in children can be quite challenging. However, the degree of psychological plasticity in children allows them to learn habits more quickly and maintain them long-term. In order to help children, adopt an attitude of gratitude consistency is imperative. Many times parents prompt children to show thankfulness sporadically or whimsically. The lack of consistency in expressing gratitude can condition children have varying experiences of gratitude. Adopting a mindset of appreciation should begin the moment a child starts the day. It may be beneficial for parents to help children to recognize each day as a gift of life.


Additionally, it can be beneficial for parents to prompt their children to be thankful for assistance with task throughout the day (i.e. teeth brushing, shoe tying, packing lunch). However, it is important to avoid prompting in a “nagging tone”. Finally, it is exceedingly important for parents to model an attitude of thankfulness. Children learn most of their characteristics and attitudes from their parental figures. It is essential for parents to express their gratefulness for acts of service and kindness from their children and other adults. Children may view parents as hypocrites and be resistant to express gratitude if they rarely witness their parents modeling the same behaviors. Expressing gratefulness for their children’s compliance and acts kindness can be a great way to model an attitude of gratitude.


Gratitude & Well-being

According to a 2014 study published in Emotion, showing appreciation toward others can help foster ongoing relationships with others. Overall, showing appreciation can be an expression of love and admiration. These aspects are essential for maintaining healthy relationships. According to a 2012 study published in Personality and Individual Differences, Individuals with higher levels of gratitude reported feeling healthier than other people. According to Dr. Emmons, a leading researcher on gratitude, individual’s with high levels of gratitude had a reduction in a multitude of negative emotions related to envy, frustration and regret. Overall, these are common emotions experienced by young egocentric children as they develop healthy self-esteem and try to meet the expectations of adult figures.



Tips for Cultivating and Attitude of Gratitude & Heart of Thankfulness”


  • Work gratitude into daily conversation with children. For example, “We’re so lucky to have a good cat like Satchmo” or “I am so thankful that we were able to spend time together”.
  • Designate a time of the day to give thanks. The best time would typically be dinner time when all member of the family are gathered together to share their gratitude.
  • Having everyone involved increases the influential power.
  • Designate task for children to assist with and show appreciation for their help. Engagement in task helps children recognize the effort involved with various duties and promotes appreciation.
  • Be a great example in displaying gratitude with family members and friends consistently
  • Practice saying “no” or “not now” to decrease entitlement tendencies. Instant gratification of every whim decreases a sense of value and appreciation.
  • Encourage children to use their strengths to show kindness and gratitude toward others.


If you or an aging loved one are considering HOME CARE IN WASHINGTON D.C., please call the friendly staff at Philia Care today at 202-607-2525.


Philia’s Parents Night Out!

Home Care in Washington D.C.Home-Care-in-Washington-D.C.


Philia is having its parent’s night out event! We are going to be doing this on a bi-monthly basis. Located at the Philia office on: 4420 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington DC 20008.


This will be a GREAT time for kids!!  Arts & Crafts, Movies, Story time. Pizza, snack. Planned by and cared for by PHILIA NANNIES & TEACHERS!!  Small & cozy size. A guaranteed good time. A DATE NIGHT for you!

Email: or call: (202) 607-2526 to register now!

Have your kids join us for the next Parent’s Night Out!!!  It will be held on Friday, September 30th from 5:30-9:30 at Philia, with the them “Back to School”.  Your children are sure to have a blast while you get some alone time with your partner.


If you or an aging loved one are considering HOME CARE IN WASHINGTON D.C., please call the friendly staff at Philia Care today at 202-607-2525.

Newsletter for October

Home Care in Washington D.C.


Even Bigger Treats

Halloween is a special time for kids, filled with fun and an abundance of delicious candy. However, Halloween has been found to have longer lasting effects than just a highly apparent sugar rush. According to researchers, Halloween can be a great way to help promote habits of gratitude, altruism, health and self-esteem.



Trick or Treating is can be a great way for children to practice displaying an attitude of gratitude. Children are constantly in a position of receiving from others. However, this position places children in a mindset of expectation versus gratitude. Teaching children about gratitude as early as possible is the foundation for success in current and future relationships. Halloween is a great opportunity to help children practice saying “thank you” and being friendly with others that are giving them treats. When children are able to show gratitude even when they receive a treat that is not of their preference, this prepares them for keeping an attitude of gratefulness in the event of future disappointments.


Social Skills

Research has found that interpersonal skills are important for peer acceptance and social adjustment throughout childhood and adolescence. Technology has reduced the opportunity for children and adults to practice face-to- face interaction. In many ways excessive use of technology to communicate with others can stunt social development. Halloween is a great time to introduce yourself to neighbors that you may have not met or catch up with neighbors with whom you have had little communication. Young children struggle with learning how to interact and develop peer relationships. Taking children to meet neighbors is a great way to teach children how to use their social skills to meet unfamiliar people and begin the process of developing connections with others.


Halloween Safety

Before you go out trick-or-treating, review the rules of Halloween safety. This is a good idea whether you are accompanied by an adult or old enough to go out with just your friends. Remember to be very careful when crossing streets. It is probably going to be very dark. Masks and other costume parts may make it harder to see oncoming traffic. Carry a flashlight with you and keep it on so that drivers can see you. Try stapling a disposable aluminum pie pan to your trick-or-treat bag. It makes an excellent reflector and will help drivers notice you.

Finally, never eat one single treat until it has been brought home and inspected by an adult. This is especially important when you have been trick-or-treating at the houses of people you do not know. It is a very sad fact that harmful substances and objects have been discovered in Halloween candy. Because of this, more and more people have decided to give small prizes such as pencils, rings, or stickers rather than something to eat.




Part of the fun of Halloween is in preparing for it. One of the traditional decorations of this season is the jack-o’-lantern. The children in Britain and many other countries make their jack-o’-lanterns from turnips. But the pumpkin is traditional in the United States and Canada. An older child or an adult will need to carve out the top and face of the jack-o’-lantern. But children of all ages can help design the face and scoop out the seeds and pulp inside. After the seeds are washed and air-dried, they can be used to make seed pictures. Or they can be made into a tasty snack. This is done by coating them with cooking oil and roasting them in a 350°F (175°C) oven for about an hour. Just add salt and they will be ready to enjoy.

Your jack-o’-lantern can be lighted from the inside with a small flashlight or a candle. Great caution should be used around jack-o’-lanterns with candles in them. And they must be kept where they won’t fall over and out of the reach of very small children.

You might want to make an entire jack-o’-lantern figure to put on your porch for the Halloween season. Stuff an old pair of pants and a shirt with crumpled newspaper. Tuck the shirttails into the pants and safety pin them together. Pin old work gloves stuffed with paper to the shirt cuffs and tuck the cuffs of the pants into an old pair of boots. Set your figure in a chair on your porch. Rest the jack-o’-lantern head on its shoulders or, for a real surprise, on its lap. This jack-o’-lantern should not be lighted with a candle because the old clothes might catch on fire.



Self-esteem is one of the most important pillars of childhood development. Recent research underscores the importance of the early childhood years as a critically important for establishing self-esteem. Many children lack self-esteem and have anxiety about various aspects of their personality being accepted by peers. Halloween is a great way for children to explore and express various

alter egos that they may not ordinarily display to the public. Dressing up and expressing themselves in an exaggerated manner allows the child’s imaginative thoughts, wishes and desires to be recognized by others and celebrated. Granting children permission to choose their costume and freely express themselves provides them with permission to be comfortable with expressing humorous, ambitious and creative aspects of their personality.


Healthy Balance

Today children typically ride in car’s and have less opportunities to engage in walking. Trick-or- treating can be a great opportunity to teach children about balance in their physical health. Walking up and down neighborhood blocks can burn thousands of calories. This could be a great opportunity to show children how exercise can be a great way to balance indulgence in unhealthy foods. Additionally, Trick-or-treating can be a great way for children to become familiar with their neighborhood and become less reliant upon parents to transport them to nearby places.


Tips for Promoting “Longer Lasting Treats”
  • Encourage children to participate in choosing or making treats that their peers may enjoy.
  • Prior to trick or treating, assist your child in practicing the use of manners and showing thankfulness when they receive a treat.
  • Encourage your child to give something back, such as a treat or compliment.
  • Be a great example in displaying social skills when meeting neighbors. Prompt your child to introduce themselves, greet others and share about their costume.
  • Allow your child to participate in choosing their own costume and discuss how the character they chose relates to aspects of their personality.
  • Avoid driving your child from house-to house. Assist your child in keeping track of calories burned during the walking experience.

If you or an aging loved one are considering HOME CARE IN WASHINGTON D.C., please call the friendly staff at Philia Care today at 202-607-2525.

What Hearing Aid is Right for Your Elderly Loved One?

Home Care in Washington D.C.

Hearing loss is something that most people have to deal with as they age. Without the ability to hear the noises that surround them, they Home-Care-in-Washington-D.C.could put their own safety at risk. For example, if they are crossing a street and are unable to hear vehicles around them, this could lead to a dangerous situation.

If this sounds like your elderly loved one, it is probably time to consider getting a hearing aid. Hearing aids work by making the sounds that surround the elder much louder and easier to hear. This is done with the use of small microphones that help by collecting the sounds in the environment. One size does not fit all when it comes to these devices. There are many different styles to choose from, so help your loved one choose the one that is best for them. Here are some of the most common styles to choose from.


In the Ear

In-the-ear hearing aids come in two styles – one that will fill up the outer most part of the ear and one that fills the lower part of the ear. This hearing aid device can help by:

  • Having a large battery for longer uses
  • Being easier to use and has a volume control
  • Picking up more noises than other hearing aids, such as the sound of wind
  • Being invisible inside the ear.

If your loved one is self-conscious about having a bulky hearing device that can be seen by all, this may be the right one for them. However, it the speaker can easily become clogged by ear wax.


Completely in the Canal (CIC)

The CIC hearing device can be customized to fit properly inside your loved one’s ear and is ideal for elders with mild to moderate hearing loss. This device is:

  • Small and difficult to see
  • Less likely to pick of noises from the wind
  • More difficult to handle and has a shorter life span since small batteries are used
  • Prone to being clogged by earwax

The CIC hearing aid does not contain extra features like the In-the-Ear device, including volume control.


In the Canal

This hearing aid is designed to fit most of the bowl-shaped part of the outer ear and is used by those with mild to severe hearing loss. With this device:

  • A larger battery makes for a longer battery life
  • Extra features are available, including volume control, but it may be more difficult to control than other devices
  • No one will be able to see it because it has a more invisible design than other hearing aids
  • Earwax may block the speakers

The kind of hearing aid your loved one uses also depends on the severity of their hearing loss. In order to help your loved one stay safe, a home care aid may be needed along with a hearing aid as a way to help the elder continue living a full and independent life.


If you or an aging loved one are considering HOME CARE IN WASHINGTON D.C., please call the friendly staff at Philia Care today at 202-607-2525.



Balancing Fun & Academics

Home Care in Washington D.C.

September is an interesting time of year as it marks the month that opens the door to the start of fall. By September most children are Home-Care-in-Washington-D.C.enrolled in school and still becoming acclimated with new teachers, peers, and schedules. Children often equate going back to school with the end of summer fun. However, September can be seen as typically the last call for “summer fun” and preparation for autumn fun. In the DMV area, September typically has sunny days and lowering humidity levels. These changes are a bonus considering the hot and humid months that many DMV residents experience over the course of the summer. September can be an excellent time for families to come out the air conditioning haven and enjoy some summer outdoor activities that have been on the bucket list. Additionally, it can be the best time to train children to balance their academics and engage in extracurricular fun.


Benefits of Balance


Many parents struggle with getting their children involved in extracurricular activities. Some parents lose hope in the battle to keep their kids active and begin to ration that it will not make a difference in their child’s well-being. According to educational research Erin Massoni, regular engagement in extracurricular activities has a great impact on attitude, academic performance and behavior. Attitude can play a significant role in a child’s performance and overall engagement in the classroom. Regular participation in activities outside of the classroom can provide a significant boost in a child’s mood. It is no secret that children that are happier perform better. Additionally, children that engage in activities outside of school with their parents feel more secure and have a healthier self-esteem. At various stages of development, children can become extremely active and easily excited. This high activity is due in large part to changes occurring in the brain that keep children stimulated as they grow. These changes can lead to hyperactivity in the classroom. Many children that are hyperactive struggle with impulsivity and behavioral problems. It is essential that hyperactive children have outlets to cope with these developmental changes. Research shows that engagement in extracurricular activities outside of the classroom can improve behavior.


How to Keep the Balance?


The busyness at the beginning of the school year can cause parents to get off track with engaging with children in regular activities outside of the classroom. It is hard to incorporate activities into your schedule once you have become accustomed to particular routine. It is important that parents train their children to maintain this balance at the start of the school year.  An excellent way to keep this balance is the schedule different activities specific days of the week. Additionally, it is important to plan activities that are realistic considering your schedule. Many parents become overly zealous and schedule activities that are time-consuming and may be too much to undertake on a weeknight or weekend. This poor planning can lead to not following through with plans and disappointment. Finally, plan activities according to the weather forecast for the month. One mistake parents make planning outdoor activities without consulting with the local weather station first. Unexpected weather changes can lead to ruined plans of fun.  It can be beneficial to refer to a weather website to get a month forecast of the weather for each day of the week. Also, be sure to check the forecast the day of the activity to check for any changes or updates so that you can switch planned activities if necessary.  Also, don’t be afraid of a little rain. If the there is a light drizzle outside be willing to put on rain coats and boots and continue activities. This level of commitment is a great way to teach children to be flexible with changes and maintain a positive attitude despite unexpected circumstances.



  • Assist children with creating a summer bucket list.
  • Create a month of September calendar and schedule activities according to the weather.
  • Prioritize activities according to most and least interest.
  • Avoid choosing activities for your child.
  • Make completing homework assignments or studying a requirement before engaging the activity.
  • Use activities as an incentive for good academic performance.
  • Be flexible with weather changes and stay committed to the schedule.
  • Maintain a positive attitude as this can teach children to keep stressors separate from times of enjoyment.

If you or an aging loved one are considering HOME CARE IN WASHINGTON D.C., please call the friendly staff at Philia Care today at 202-607-2525.