Family Staffing Blog

Senior Foot Care—It’s important and can be a nice treat too!

Not only is proper Foot Care* important for Seniors, it can be a nice treat.  Family Staffing Solutions discovered Cassie Harrington and Toes on the Go.  Cassie brings her services to you!

Consider giving your loved one (and yourself too :-)) a Pedicure (or Manicure) for Mother’s Day or any day and make it part of your personal care routine.  Even if your loved one is in Hospice care, Assisted Living or a Nursing Facility, Cassie Harrington with Toes on the Go will come to your location.  You may be surprised how much you and your loved one will enjoy this.  Contact Cassie at 615-886-8755  to arrange for your foot care.  As Cassie says. “self care is a divine responsibility”.

Top Health Issues Among Seniors Resulting from Improper Foot Care*

As adults age, taking proper care of their feet can become challenging for a variety of reasons. However, the older we get, the more important foot health becomes. Seniors commonly experience poor circulation, mobility issues and changes to the foot itself, including increased dryness to skin and nails, which leave feet prone to injuries and potential infections. The good news is that most of these conditions can be prevented or treated with simple, proactive care regimens. Below are 3 of the most common foot conditions that plague seniors and tips on how they can be prevented.

1)  Ingrown toenails – many seniors suffer from ingrown toenails and infections due to improper nail trimming techniques. The best way to prevent ingrown toenails is to regularly clip and file your nails. Nails should be cut straight across without curving on the edges. The speed of natural nail growth varies, but this routine should typically be completed every 3-4 weeks to lessen the risk of having toenails break, crack or become ingrown.

2)  Corns & calluses – these sores are not only painful and unsightly, but they can become dangerous, especially for seniors with diabetes or other circulation issues.

3)  Foot ulcers – diabetics who can’t properly take care of their feet due to neuropathy or mobility issues risk serious problems that can lead to amputation if left untreated. Untended cuts, fungus and dry cracked feet can eventually become infected and lead to foot ulcers.  Don’t ignore any foot pain or signs of infection. If you are diabetic, schedule routine check-ups annually to ensure you maintain foot health.

The best thing you can do to ensure your feet stay healthy and avoid these three issues is to check them daily. Make sure you wash them every day with warm water but keep them dry throughout the day by wearing soft, absorbent socks. It’s also important to keep your feet moisturized but avoid applying lotion between toes since trapped moisture can increase the risk of fungal infection. If you have a sore or pain that doesn’t go away, promptly contact a medical professional. When it comes to your feet, it’s always better be proactive rather than reactive with care regimens.

*Source:  Senior




Simple Home Modifications for Seniors Living at Home – Savvy Living


My 76-year-old mother wants to stay living in her own home for as long as possible but she doesn’t have the money for big renovations.

What tips or recommendations do you have to help make a home safer for seniors who want to remain living at home?



There are dozens of small adjustments and simple modifications to help make your mom’s home safer for little to no cost. Here are some suggestions to get you started.

  • Eliminate Trip and Slip Hazards

Since falls are the leading cause of home injury among seniors, a good place to start is by arranging or moving your mom’s furniture to create clear walking pathways throughout her home. Position any electrical and phone cords along the wall so they will not be tripping hazards. If she has throw rugs, remove them or use carpet tacks or double-sided tape to secure them. Don’t forget to pick up items on the floor that could cause her to trip, like papers, shoes or clothes.

In the bathroom, buy some non-skid rugs for the floors and a rubber mat or adhesive nonslip strips for the floor of the tub or shower. Also consider hiring a carpenter to install grab bars in and around the tub/shower and near the toilet for support.

  • Improve Lighting

Good lighting is a very important safety consideration. As such, make sure to check the wattage ratings on your mom’s lamps and light fixtures and install the brightest bulbs allowed. Purchase some nightlights for bathrooms and hallways that are used after dark. Also consider adding under-cabinet task lighting in the kitchen and motion sensor lights outside near her driveway and by the home’s front and back doors.

  • Hand Helpers

If your mom has hand arthritis or problems gripping, install lever-style door handles or doorknob lever adapters, which are easier to use than traditional doorknobs. If her kitchen and bathroom faucets have twist knobs, consider replacing them with single lever, touch or sensor-style faucets. Also consider replacing knobs on cabinets and drawers with easier to grip D-shaped handles.

  • Easier Living

To help make your mom’s kitchen easier to use, organize her cabinets so the things she uses most often are within reach and at eye-level so that she does not need to crouch down or use a step-stool. Also, consider installing pull-out shelves beneath the counter and Lazy Susans in corner cabinets for easier access.

For easier and safer bathing, consider purchasing a shower chair and install a hand-held shower so your mom can bathe from a seated position, if necessary.

  • Accessibility Solutions

If your mom uses a walker or wheelchair, you can modify her house by installing ramps on entrance steps and mini-ramps to go over high thresholds. You can also install “swing-away” or “swing-clear” hinges on her doors to add two inches of width for easier access.

  • Safety Improvements

To keep your mom safe, set her hot water heater no higher than 120 degrees Fahrenheit in order to prevent scalding water. If she has stairs, put handrails on both sides. Also, install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors on all levels of her house and place a lightweight, easy-to-use ABC-rated fire extinguisher in an easily accessible location in the kitchen.

For more tips, obtain a copy of AARP’s “HomeFit Guide,” which is filled with great recommendations. You can access it at or call 888-687-2277 and request a free copy by mail.

Also note that all the previously mentioned products can be purchased either in local retail stores, home improvement stores, pharmacies, medical supply stores or online.

Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of “The Savvy Living” book.

Halloween Safety Tips for the Elderly


For most of us Halloween holds childhood memories of dressing up,  carving pumpkins and going door to door for candy and treats. And for many of our Elderly population this memory expands to giving out candy and treats to the costumed children at their door. However for some  with Dementia and/or Physical limitations; Halloween may hold negative feelings and fear that can contribute to negative behaviors leading up to and on Halloween itself.  In addition the security and safety factor of having strangers coming to the door in the twilight and evening hours is not conducive to a safe environment for elderly living alone. Keeping our elderly population as safe as possible on Halloween while still enjoying the holiday in their own way can be possible with a few considerations and interventions. To continue enjoying life safely is the goal!

My mother was one of those treat givers that the children loved to visit. She enjoyed watching the little faces and would open her door to anyone, even long into the late hours. Without going further you can imagine what real risks there are for an elderly woman alone opening her door up at night to total strangers. For my mother,  the joy of giving out candy continued when she live in a secure community where children were invited, safety measures were followed and the doors were locked and staff protected her into the night. She continued to enjoy Halloween without previous risks.

On Halloween there can be an increase of safety and security concerns for elderly who live alone, and especially those with Dementia and/or Physical limitations. Contributing factors may include; decorations, falling leaves, wet pavements, decreased daylight hours, change in weather conditions,  and more. Some of these risks can be avoided or minimized by carefully considering what adjustments can be made. This is by no means an exhaustive or complete approach to safety or recommendations, but instead just a few considerations as you prepare for Halloween with an Elderly person.

Halloween Safety Tips for the Elderly

  • Keep all floors, entry ways and porches free of decorations.
  • Add night lights to hallways, walkways and rooms, and keep well lit.
  • Avoid window decorations that block light or view of front entry.
  • Use only safe pumpkin carving tools,  light pumpkin with flame-less votive.
  • Place carved pumpkins outside to keep decaying smell and bugs outside.
  • Spend the evening with them, be available to help answer door, keep them safe.
  • When done with candy, or at dusk: Put sign on door, “Sorry No More Candy”.
  • There is debate on turning off porch light, which can increase security risk.

Don’t leave an elderly person with Dementia or physical limitations home alone on Halloween…

  • Take them to a community event or family home, and return home after dusk.
  • Send a companion or professional to be with them from 4:00-10:00 or overnight.
  • Help them answer door and hand out candy if they wish.
  • Put out sign when done “Sorry No More Candy”.
  • Watch movie or listen to music in another room away from front door if possible.
  • Be prepared; books, albums, crafts, favorite foods, etc. to enjoy and distract.
  • Follow dietary instructions; avoid over indulgence of chocolate or sugar.

Remember Halloween may not be a happy time for elderly with Dementia and may be scary, or create added stimulation from doorbell, knocks, noise outside. Be sensitive to what they can tolerate and do your best to keep them safe and enjoy the evening with you.

By; Pati Rader, CSA
Certified Senior Advisor®
Life Enrichment Specialist


Do you worry that your parent or a loved one living alone is okay?


Do you have a senior parent or loved one that lives alone, is independent, but you still worry and want to know that they are doing okay throughout the day?

Can technology give you the peace of mind to know that your loved one is okay while you are away?

While there are daily check-in call service programs  available, most are automated and provide no personal communication.  They simply assume that if the phone is answered then everything is fine. But, what if it’s not?

It’s only when the phone is not answered that a notification call is sent to you.

There are also many different monitoring devices that are available through today’s technology but they all lack the personal touch of one-on-one contact and communication

With Family Staffing Solutions’ “At Your Service” Phone Visits, we offer personal, not automated, calls to your loved one throughout the day and actually speak with them to find out how they are doing.

We will work with you to develop  a schedule for placing the calls and well as establishing an Emergency plan—just in case.

We are dedicated to your active lifestyle and are here to help you care for those you love.

If you are interested in learning more about our Phone Visits, contact your local office today!


Coming Home from the Hospital

When  your loved one is ready to come home from the hospital,  proper discharge planning can reduce your stress and lower the possibility of hospital readmission. 

Here are some tips we think are important to help prepare for your loved one’s successful recovery at home.


  • Assess your loved one’s condition and needs.
  • Become part of the health care team (doctor, nurse, therapists) so you can learn how to provide care.
  • Get complete written instructions from the doctor.  If there is anything you don’t understand, ASK QUESTIONS.
  • Develop a plan of care with the healthcare provider.
  • Meet with the hospital’s social worker or discharge planner to determine home care benefits.
  • Understand in-home assistance and options and arrange for in-home help.
  • Arrange physical, occupational, and speech therapy as needed.
  • Find out if medicine is provided by the hospital to take home.  If not, have prescriptions filled before you take your loved one home.
  • Buy needed supplies; rent, borrow or buy equipment such as wheelchairs, crutches, and walkers.

For more information on Discharge Planning visit


What to Look For in a Home Care Company – Why Choose Us?

We’ve taken a recent post/article from the Senior Directory Newsletter regarding 5 questions to consider when choosing a Home Care Company and answered them for you based on the guidelines, policies, procedures, and practices of Family Staffing Solutions, Inc.  We think you will find that when it comes to choosing in-home care, Family Staffing Solutions, Inc. is the company you can trust to provide personal care for your loved ones.

 What to Look For in a Home Care Company

Today’s seniors have more care options available to them than ever before. When their physical capabilities start to diminish, more and more seniors are choosing to receive assistance in the comfort of their own homes. Home care is considered by many to be one of the most desirable options because it allows seniors to maintain their independence while remaining where they feel most comfortable.

One of the most difficult challenges you face when caring for an aging parent is finding a good, quality home care company. Whether you need full time assistance or a little extra help when you can’t be there, hiring a home care provider is a serious decision. Just like any other major life decision, there are many pitfalls to watch out for when enlisting home care assistance. On the surface, many home care companies seem to be the same. With so many available options, how do you find the best fit for your loved one?

To help with this task, we have provided the following list of questions to ask each home care agency you consider for your loved one.  If they can’t answer these questions to your satisfaction, then you should consider working with a different company.

Are your caregivers bonded and insured?

Believe it or not, many home care companies have minimal insurance coverage while others have none at all. Most home care companies carry liability coverage for personal injuries and property damage. However, it is important that the company is bonded. Bonded means the company offers protection to the client if the caregiver steals from them.

Providing service since 1999, Family Staffing Solutions’ Caregivers are Bonded, Insured, and Supervised. They are also evaluated as part of our Quality Assurance Standard of Care for your family.

How extensive are your background checks?

Unfortunately, there are some unscrupulous people in this world. The last thing you want to do is to allow them into your home. It is imperative that you ask about the background checks the agency performs on their caregivers. Because unsavory characters move from place to place, it’s important that you know about the caregiver on a national scale. Also, be sure to ask the agency if they conduct reference checks.

At Family Staffing Solutions, Inc., we take pride in hiring Exceptional Caregivers.  To become a part of our team, each candidate must go thru a thorough screening process starting with completing our application process in person.

Once a candidate has completed their application at the local office and an initial assessment has been completed, signed authorization by the candidate allows Family Staffing Solutions to conduct the following Background Checks:

National and Local Criminal Background, Abuse Registry, Sex Offender Registry, Department of Public Safety

We also require:

Verification of Car Insurance

Professional and Personal references.

Pre-Employment and Random Drug Testing


Are your caregivers employees or contractors?

There are different types of home care companies (employers, referral services, registries, and individuals). The benefit with working with companies that hire employees is that they hire and pay their employees directly. All employees are covered by work comp and liability laws of your state. Employers are subject to Social Security, Federal Tax, and Medicare withholding, and applicable state and local income taxes. It’s important to understand your obligations when hiring a home care agency.

The Caregivers of Family Staffing Solutions are our employees and therefore we are directly responsible for Payroll, all taxes and withholdings, Social Security, and Workers’ Compensation Insurance.


What is the company’s replacement policy?

Despite everyone’s best efforts the client and caregiver’s personalities may clash. In most cases, a good home care agency will provide you with as many replacements as needed. Have a discussion about “what if” scenarios and see how the company reacts. Ideally they will take your concerns very seriously and act as a liaison to resolve the conflict quickly and effectively.

At Family Staffing Solutions, our services are personalized to match the unique needs of each client and family. Our caregivers have the skills, the understanding, and the heart to care for your family. We encourage you to partner in the selection of a caregiver to find the right fit for your family as well as work together with us to maximize their time with your loved one.

We call our employees “Friends.” That is exactly the relationship we want you and your loved one to nourish and enjoy with our caregivers.


What happens if I have an issue of concern after business hours?

Home care is a 24/7 business. The rule of thumb is that worst case situations occur during the nights, weekends, or holidays. You want your agency to have a very clear process for managing problems outside of their regular business hours. Some agencies use answering services while a few agencies will have a dedicated staff member to field calls after hours. With today’s technology there is absolutely no reason you shouldn’t be able to reach the agency in case of an emergency. Ask how to contact them and see how they respond.

At Family Staffing Solutions:

Your phone call will be answered by a member of our staff, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week including holidays.

Services are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, including holidays.

Emergency staffing is available in crisis situations.


 Article and Question Source:   Senior



The Opioid Addiction Concern for our Seniors

Finding Help for Seniors Addicted to Opioids

I’m worried about my 72-year-old mom who has been taking Vicodin—an opioid medication—for her hip and back pain for more than a year. I fear she’s becoming addicted to the drug but I don’t know what to do.


Opioid addiction is a national problem that is hitting people of all ages, including millions of older Americans. Here is what you should know and do to help your mom.

The Cause

The main reason opioid addiction has become such a problem for people over age 50 is because opioids have become a commonly prescribed (and often overprescribed) medication by doctors over the past two decades. It is being used to treat many different types of pain and diseases, including arthritis, cancer, neurological diseases and other illnesses that become more common in later life.

Nearly one-third of all Medicare patients—almost 12 million people—were prescribed opioid painkillers by their physicians in 2015. That same year, 2.7 million Americans over the age of 50 abused painkillers.

Taken as directed, opioids can manage pain effectively when used for a short amount of time. However, because nearly 5% of those treated will develop an addiction or abuse the opioid medication, people should be screened and monitored when using an opioid for a long period of time.

Signs of Addiction

Your mom may be addicted to opioids if she cannot stop herself from taking the drug and her tolerance continues to increase. She may also be addicted if she keeps using opioids without her doctor’s consent, even if it is causing her problems related to her health, money, family or friends.

If you think your mom has an addiction, ask her to see a doctor for an evaluation. Go to a family doctor, her prescribing physician or find a specialist through the American Society of Addiction Medicine (see or the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry ( It is also important to be positive and encouraging. Addiction is a medical matter, not a character flaw. Repeated use of opioids actually can change the way the brain functions.


Treatment for opioid addiction is different for each person, but the main goal is to enable your mom to stop taking the drug and avoid using it again in the future.

To help her stop using the drug, her doctor can prescribe certain medicines to help relieve her withdrawal symptoms and control her cravings. These medicines include methadone, buprenorphine and naltrexone.

After her body detoxifies, behavioral treatments such as individual counseling, group or family counseling and cognitive therapy can help her learn how to manage depression, avoid the drug, deal with cravings and heal damaged relationships.

For assistance, call the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) confidential help line at 800-662-4357 or visit The SAMHSA has individuals who can connect you with treatment services in your mom’s state.

Also, if you believe that your mom has a doctor who prescribes opioids in excess or without legitimate reason, you should report him or her to the appropriate state medical board. For contact information visit

-Jim Miller – Savvy Living
Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of “The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.


Caring For Our Veterans


At Family Staffing Solutions, Inc. we proudly care for our Veterans, their spouses and surviving spouses every day. Our commitment to their care is just one of the ways we demonstrate appreciation for their service to our country.

These heroes – our fathers, mothers, spouses, and friends – may be eligible for a unique benefit through the VA called “Pension with Aid and Attendance.” This benefit may provide reimbursement funding of up to $25,525 a year to help cover medical expenses, including in-home care services. In-home care helps keep loved ones safe and comfortable at home.

Millions of qualifying veterans and families go without Aid and Attendance simply because of not knowing about the benefit and inability to pay for in-home care. Through our partnership with Veterans Care Coordination, we are able to assist qualifying veterans and their spouses to apply for and obtain the Aid and Attendance Benefit through the Department of Veterans Affairs.

What makes this partnership unique is the fact that Veterans Care Coordination can offer financial assistance to clients that cannot afford to pay for the up-front, out of pocket expense of in-home care through their Veterans Appreciation Program.

For information on eligibility visit or call toll free 855-380-4400

RUTHERFORD Cable July Monthly Spotlight Member

Family Staffing Solutions’ Kathy Bennett was chosen as the Rutherford Cable’s Spotlight Member for July.  Here’s what they had to say:

“Kathy Bennett has served the Rutherford County community and its citizens for over 16 years in customer relations with respected locally-owned businesses such as Reeves-Sain and Family Staffing Solutions, Inc. Kathy has served in Client Relations & Services over the past 5 years with Family Staffing Solutions Inc., which offers award winning in-home, non-medical care, needs and assistance to the elderly. As the company liaison for all clients, Kathy maintains excellent client relations while keeping company/state required information updated and current for offices based in Murfreesboro, Nashville and Shelbyville and surrounding communities.

Kathy currently serves on the RUTHERFORD Cable Special Events Committee. Her passion is and always will be people. Kathy will celebrate 30 years of marriage this year with husband Rick and is the mother of daughter Denise, stepson Les, two wonderful grandchildren and another grand baby on the way!”