best assisted living facility Senior Living Tips & Advice

How to Choose the Best Assisted Living Facility

Approximately 3.9 million adults over the age of 50 say their main company is the television. Finding the best assisted living in DC is a great way to give your loved one the senior care and socialization they need. 

But, how do you find the best assisted living facility? 

In this article, we discuss how to find the right senior living arrangement for the senior in your life. From short-term needs like amenities to long-term needs like memory care, we cover it all. Continue reading to find the best place for your senior. 

What Is an Assisted Living Facility?

Before you can find the best assisted living facility, it’s important to understand what assisted living in DC is. Unlike nursing homes, assisted living offers the best combination of senior care and independence.

Services offered at different facilities range from private apartments to shared rooms to memory care services and more. This can be confusing for seniors to navigate if they don’t know what to look for. 

Senior Living Facility Considerations

Before searching, ‘assisted living facility near me,’ on the internet, it’s important to know what you’re searching for. We recommend taking the time to list out what you or your loved one wants from your senior living facility.

If you aren’t sure what you want, this is a great opportunity to start your research. Start by considering the budget, long and short-term needs, desire for social activities, and desired amenities.

Senior Living Budget

One of the most important aspects of finding assisted living for seniors is setting their budget. When setting a budget, it’s important to factor in all expenses and not just the cost of the senior living facility.

You’ll need to know the type of pricing offered by the facility as well as any additional amenities such as cable or streaming services, car loan payments, groceries, etc. Only with a full picture will you be able to set an accurate budget.

Short-Term And Long-Term Needs

Factoring in both your loved one’s short-term and long-term needs can help them feel settled for longer. While they may only need assisted living right now, they may need additional senior care later on.

Facilities that offer more in-depth care such as memory care can make the transition easier if it’s needed down the road. You should learn about how this transition would work if it’s needed when touring the facility. 

Social Activities

Seniors living alone may become isolated from friends and family. They may inadvertently withdraw from social gatherings. Before selecting a facility for assisted living in DC, it’s important to consider what types of activities your loved one might enjoy.

Some facilities offer group activities such as yoga, arts and crafts, woodworking, and more. It’s a great way to maintain your dexterity, learn a new skill or hobby, and meet new people in the community

Important Amenities

Finding the best assisted living facility in DC isn’t just about getting good senior care, it’s about being comfortable. For that reason, you should consider which amenities are offered before making a final decision. 

The right amenities can make an assisted living facility even more enjoyable. Some of our favorite amenities include a movie theater, exercise room, bistro, and private garden.

Finding The Best Assisted Living Facility Near Me

Now that you have an idea of what’s important for you and your loved one in a senior care facility, you can focus on finding the best assisted living facility. To accomplish this, you’ll need a list of questions and considerations as well as a tour.

Taking a tour is especially important when trying to find ‘assisted living near me.’ It allows you to see the facility first-hand and ask questions in real-time. Plus, many facilities offer digital tours so you don’t have to leave your home.

Consider Cleanliness

The first thing you should note on your senior care facility tour is its cleanliness and functionality. Are the grounds well kept? Do the rooms and residents appear adequately cared for?

Don’t forget to consider other features such as food and equipment. You want your loved one to live somewhere that not only takes good care of their equipment but also ensures repairs are made when necessary. 

Learn About The Staff

Since you’re loved one will spend a lot of their time with the staff, it’s important to learn as much as you can about them. It can also offer you a more accurate impression of the facility as a whole. 

Staff Background Checks

You want your loved one to be as secure as possible in their new senior living facility. For that reason, it’s important to ask about the facility’s policy on employee background checks.

Ideally, every employee is screened for a criminal record that might impact their ability to provide quality senior care. This will help you get peace of mind that you’re selecting the best assisted living facility for your loved one. 

Staff-To-Resident Ratio

Even with great amenities, a clean facility, and quality staff, a facility may not be the best choice if it doesn’t have a good staff-to-resident ratio. This term refers to the number of staff members in comparison to the number of residents.

A good ratio helps ensure every resident, including your loved one, receives the senior care they need. Otherwise, there’s not a staff member to address all resident concerns promptly. 

Get A Feel For Culture

During your senior living facility tour, try to get a feel for the community culture. You want to be sure the employees seem content as well as the residents. This is a great indicator that the facility is a generally happy place to live.

If socialization is important to you or your loved one, you want to determine if that’s part of the facility culture. Find out if residents regularly participate in social activities or if they tend to stay in their rooms. 

Find The Best Assisted Living Facility Near Me

Finding the best assisted living facility for your loved one can be a stressful process if you don’t know what to look for. Use the above guide to ensure your loved one doesn’t just receive quality senior care but that they are also happy.

If you’re searching for assisted living in DC, schedule your tour today. 

memory care center Senior Living Tips & Advice

Top 5 Benefits of a Memory Care Center for…

Did you know that an estimated 10,000 DC seniors are living with dementia? That adds up to about 13% of the DC senior population, all of whom will need some form of care as they continue to age.

A memory care center is one of your best options. Memory care centers go beyond basic dementia and memory loss care. They also provide holistic day-to-day care that ensures a healthy and happy life. 

What, exactly, are the biggest benefits of a memory care center for seniors with memory loss? How can you decide if this is the best option for you or your loved one?

Read on to learn about the five top benefits of memory care centers for seniors.

1. Specialized Memory Care

Senior living facilities are open to all seniors, but specialized memory care is available to residents with memory loss and other cognitive processing issues. Treating seniors for memory loss should never come down to a one-size-fits-all approach. By joining a memory care center, each resident can work with trained staff members who will get to know them and their needs.

The goal is to create a memory care plan that aligns with each resident’s unique qualities. This includes things like personal and family history, personal preferences, and current cognitive abilities. Using tools like cognitive assessment tests, staff members can determine the best approach to treatment both in and out of the facility. 

Being able to get that care in a familiar environment is crucial. In a memory care facility, residents will feel right at home as they work with familiar and friendly staff members. This helps to limit feelings of confusion and frustration and creates an optimal memory care experience.

2. A Strong Sense of Communication and Social Opportunities 

Cognitive diseases like dementia can be exacerbated or accelerated by a variety of factors. One of them is isolation. In fact, seniors who live in isolated conditions are 50% more likely to show signs of dementia.

This is one of the reasons why aging at home isn’t always the best solution, even if it seems ideal. At home, seniors may not have as many chances to interact or build meaningful connections with others. This becomes more difficult when seniors have disabilities, both cognitive and physical, that limit their ability to leave the home.

At a memory care facility, community and socialization are key. There are always social activities to attend as well as shared amenities to enjoy with other residents. Residents get to know their caregivers and neighbors–and family and friends are always welcome.

3. Nutritional Wellness

Malnutrition is another concern for seniors with disabilities like dementia. Without proper care, this can become an unfortunate cycle. Seniors with memory loss may not have the ability to prepare and eat balanced meals which can, in turn, worsen memory loss.

Memory care facilities provide nutritious meals three times a day plus healthy snacking options. These meals are crafted based on nutrition science and the ideal diet for senior citizens. Memory care centers will also take personal dietary needs into account for each resident, ensuring everyone has great food to eat.

4. Safety and Security

If you have an elderly loved one with memory loss, one of your concerns is likely with their safety and security. What happens if they have an emergency at home? What happens if they leave the house and can’t find their way back?

At memory care facilities, safety and security are top priorities. 24/7 staff ensures that someone will respond to an emergency promptly, getting your loved one the medical attention they need. Plus, each private residence is designed with safety in mind, minimizing things like fall risks.

Memory care facilities also provide security. Memory loss patients can begin to wander more, giving family members cause for concern. A memory care center is monitored by staff members and the secured grounds prevent residents from getting lost.

5. Assistance With ADLs

ADLs refer to activities of daily living. This encompasses all of the day-to-day functions we are used to performing on our own that keep us safe, healthy, clean, and well-groomed. For example, cooking, eating, bathing, dressing, and taking medications are all considered activities of daily living.

As we age, it can become difficult to complete ADLs on our own. Things like a limited range of mobility or physical disability can impede ADLs.

For seniors with memory loss, ADLs present a unique challenge. Memory loss doesn’t just make it difficult to remember to do things like taking medications or eating complete meals. Cognitive decline can also disrupt executive functioning skills, making it difficult to tackle these tasks from start to finish. 

The caregivers at a memory care facility don’t just provide specialized memory care. They also assist with ADLs, ensuring that seniors are well taken care of, hygienic, and healthy. By taking care of ADLs, caregivers also lower the stress seniors may experience, leaving more time for enjoyable experiences.

We’re Proud to Provide a Memory Care Center for DC Seniors

Memory care is crucial for the health and happiness of seniors experiencing memory loss. A memory care center is the perfect solution for seniors who are looking for an all-encompassing approach to their safety, health, and quality of life.

Maple Heights Living is a luxurious option for DC seniors, providing a wide variety of care levels and approaches. We shift our approach to each resident’s care as their needs shift. Everyone is unique and their care should be, too.

To schedule a tour of Maple Heights Living, contact us today. We look forward to getting to know you and answering any questions you may have about our facilities.

assisted living services Senior Living Tips & Advice

When to Consider Assisted Living Services

Living with an elderly loved one is a difficult reality for hundreds of families across the United States. In fact, there are more than 40 million individuals taking care of elderly relatives, friends, or neighbors without compensation.

If you’re in this boat, it might be time to invest in assisted living services for your elderly loved one. Senior housing can take the burden off your back as well as provide professional care to your aging friend or relative. 

To help you decide whether it’s time to send your loved one to a skilled nursing facility or not, we’ve put together this guide. Here are a few signs that it’s time to consider an assisted living facility. 

They’ve Had Several Recent Falls

If your loved one is struggling with frequent falls, it’s definitely time to start thinking about senior care. Falls in the home can be extremely dangerous to their health. 

For one thing, if a senior adult has a fall when no one is there to help them, they could suffer serious injuries. Plus, it’s a sign that they’re not able to take care of themselves in the way that they need to to be healthy. 

At a senior living facility, staff works around the clock to ensure that falls do not occur. And, in the rare event that one does, they’re able to give the adult the support and care that they need. 

Their Health Is Declining

As we age, our bodies undergo several changes. These changes can lead to the development of new or chronic health issues. 

When we develop these issues, we can stay sick for extended periods of time. This can require 24-hour care to ensure we heal properly. 

If you have a loved one that falls into this category it could be time to sign them up for an assisted living facility. That way you can ensure their needs are met at all times.

They Struggle to Complete Daily Activities

If your loved one is having a hard time completing daily tasks such as doing the laundry or sweeping the kitchen, it might be time to think about assisted living. 

An assisted living facility will take care of all the daily chores that your loved one is struggling with. Plus, that will give them more time to focus on hobbies and socializing. 

Their Eating Habits and Hygiene Are Declining

When older adults stop properly caring for themselves, they may start to neglect their hygiene, diet, or exercise routine. This can lead them to get sick more often or to struggle with infection and other illnesses. 

For example, if a person isn’t able to maneuver their way through the kitchen anymore they may not be able to prepare healthy meals. This can lead to malnutrition which can spiral into other health issues. 

At an assisted living facility, adults receive all their meals rather than having to cook them. Plus they have the support they need to complete other daily activities such as bathing. 

They’re Struggling With Isolation and Sadness

One of the more common difficulties that aging adults struggle with is depression. Because they no longer have the same mobility or independence, they can begin to feel isolated and alone. 

Assisted living centers can combat this issue by creating a welcoming community where residents interact in social events. They’ll have companionship from the caregivers and staff as well as with other residents. 

They’ve Become Aggressive

It’s not uncommon for people struggling with dementia to become aggressive. In fact, the Alzheimer’s Association has conducted numerous studies on the link between this type of behavior and dementia and Alzheimers. 

If you have a loved one who has become aggressive due to confusion and memory loss, an assisted living residence may be a good choice for them. In an assisted living environment they can be closely monitored by professionals. 

In addition, assisted living professionals have the skills, experience, and expertise needed to help people struggling with this issue. They can make your aging adult more comfortable as they work through the challenges of cognitive decline. 

Their Mobility Is Worsening

If your loved one is struggling to go up and down the stairs or to move around the home, it may be time to think about a senior care home. 

While it’s possible to have renovations done on the home to make it easier for them to move around, these are often costly. To save money and time, it can be a lot easier to move your loved one into an assisted living facility instead. 

They’re Constantly Wandering Off

Does your aging family member or loved one have a habit of wandering off? Do they constantly seem to be getting lost when they’re out and about?

If you can’t shake the feeling that your loved one is going to walk off and get lost, it may be time to enroll in a senior care facility. Failure to do so could mean that your aging adult wanders off and gets into a serious situation. 

However, in a senior care facility, they are kept safe at all times. They are only able to wander so far, and if they get lost there are caretakers working 24-hours a day to help them out. 

You’re Feeling Burnt Out

While you might be full of energy and ready to tackle the challenge when you first start caring for an older adult, that energy can quickly diminish. That’s especially true when your stress levels are running high. 

Many caregivers get burnout from the added responsibility, hard work, and stress that comes with caring for a senior. When that happens, your health and well-being can take a toll and affect your ability to care for your aging adult.

Invest in Assisted Living Services

Assisted living services can be a game-changer for everyone involved in an aging individual’s life. They can provide support for the family, the current caregiver, and the senior citizen. 

If you feel that your loved one is ready to sign up for an assisted living home, we’re here to help. Give us a call today and we’ll help you and your loved one live happily ever after. 

care facility Senior Living Tips & Advice

How to Overcome Feelings of Guilt When Moving Your…

Over 2.5 million older Americans now live in care homes or assisted living. That’s more than the entire population of New Mexico!

If you’re among the growing number of people with a parent in a care facility, you may be experiencing feelings of guilt. Perhaps you’re wondering if you’ll ever feel the same again.

It’s a common problem, and if you’re feeling this way, you’re certainly not alone. That’s why we put together this article, to help you understand and manage your feelings.

Remember It’s for the Best

Assisted living facilities exist to provide quality care for people who need it. You may feel guilty now, but there’s likely to be a part of you that knows you’ve made the right decision. 

Taking care of an elderly relative at home can be extremely difficult. And you may not be able to offer the quality of care your parent needs. Keep in mind that you’ve done right by your parent, ensuring they’re safe and well cared for.

Arrange a Visiting Schedule

When a parent moves into an assisted living facility, it’s natural that one of the biggest worries could be a loss of connection. You may feel like you’ve been separated from your loved one and it’s possible that everyday pleasures like meeting for a simple cup of coffee can be taken away.

It can help to arrange a schedule of regular visits. This will help you feel more of a connection and ward off feelings of guilt. You could even collaborate with relatives and friends to draw up a visiting rotation, ensuring your loved one receives visits most days of the week.

Plan Some Special Events

As well as the standard visits, you can shake things up a little by arranging some fun events. This could be something simple, like a visit over the holidays, or something more exciting, like a trip to a nearby attraction.

Just because a parent has checked into an assisted living facility, that doesn’t mean there aren’t still plenty of great times ahead of you. In fact, care home residents make new memories every day.

This can give both you and your parent something to look forward to and remind you that there are plenty of good times still to come. 

Talk With Friends and Family About Your Feelings

If you’re feeling guilt and grief about moving a parent into assisted living, those emotions can eat away at you. You might feel sad and struggle to enjoy everyday activities.

That’s why it’s so important not to keep your feelings bottled up.

Find someone you trust and talk to them about the way you’re feeling. Opening up to friends or family is a great way to process your emotions and get a new perspective on your problems. It’s also a good way to ask for help and support if you need it during this tough time.

Focus on Positive Elements of the Care Facility

It pays to look on the bright side of life. So, when your parent moves into an assisted living facility, it can really help to focus on the good things about their new home.

At Maple Heights, we offer a wide range of quality facilities for our residents to enjoy. There are gardens, a bistro, exercise rooms, and even a theater! Instead of dwelling on your worries, try to think about your loved one enjoying all these amazing utilities.

Many residents make lots of friends too. With people their own age around them, and plenty of activities to enjoy, it’s no wonder lots of new care home residents find their social lives significantly improved.

Remember You’re Doing Your Best

Everyone has times in their lives when they feel that they haven’t measured up to expectations. That’s especially common among people who’ve recently moved parents into an assisted living facility. 

But you’re only human. You’ve made a tough decision, but no doubt this is the one that’s right for you and your family. 

Don’t be too hard on yourself. You’re trying your hardest and doing your best and it’s important to keep that in mind. 

Keep Your Own Needs in Mind

At the moment, it’s natural to be thinking about others. If you’re dealing with guilt over the choice you’ve made, all your emotional energy is likely to be with your parent.

But it’s important to be kind to yourself as well. Your parent wouldn’t want you to be miserable, so be sure to take care of yourself. Perhaps you could enjoy a few treats to help keep your spirits up.

Give Yourself Time

Right now, it might feel like guilt is eating you up. Perhaps you’re struggling to focus on work, family life, and leisure activities, unable to take your mind off these difficult feelings.

Perhaps you’ve tried talking to family and focusing on the positives. But nothing is working.

In times like these, it’s a good idea to remember the old saying, “time is the best healer.” Things may seem difficult now, but over the coming weeks and months, things will likely start to seem a lot better. Give yourself a little while to get used to the changes and process your feelings, and things will soon start looking brighter.

Choose a Facility to Set Your Mind at Ease

Of course, the best way to feel secure in your choice is to know your loved one is safe and happy in a top-quality care facility. When you know they’re doing well in their new home, you can be happy, too.

Maple Heights is the perfect place for assisted living in Washington, DC.

Reach out to us today to schedule a tour, discuss your needs, and find out how we can help.

senior housing dc Senior Living Tips & Advice

How to Find Senior Housing DC

An estimated 7 out of 10 adults will need assisted living at some point in their lives. Finding housing with adequate care for our elder family members becomes not only a necessity, but it can also become overwhelming.

We all want to be sure our family members are getting the best of the best. Whether you’re searching for live-in care or a senior housing community, let this guide help you pick the best option for your loved one. How do you find the best of senior housing D.C. has to offer? 

Assisted Living Facilities 

Assisted living facilities are designed to do exactly as the name displays: Offer assistance to your loved one! The level of care may differ by the facility and on an as-needed basis. This option is best for older adults who are still quite capable of living on their own. 

An added benefit that families love about assisted living facilities is their amazing amenities. Many facilities offer amenities such as fitness rooms, bistros and cafes, and theatres. Your loved one never needs to worry about being unable to continue an active lifestyle.

You can expect they would have their own apartment or condo layout. They may need some assistance with certain tasks. This could include medication management, bathing, shopping, etc.

If you are unsure if your loved one would benefit from assisted living, here are the top three questions to consider before deciding on assisted living in Washington, D.C.  

Nursing Homes  

Unlike an assisted living facility, a nursing home can be taken under consideration when your loved one needs around-the-clock care. This includes everything from everyday tasks such as feeding themselves and bathing to health management and home care. 

This form of senior living in Washington, D.C., is recommended for adults who are completely unable to care for themselves any longer. Whether this is due to mental health conditions or physical illnesses, an on-site doctor oversees the patient’s care during their stay. Most facilities will have specialized care available to patients for conditions like dementia or Alzheimer’s. 

Continuing Care Retirement 

This type of facility incorporates the level of care from both assisted living and nursing homes. Although it tends to be the priciest of options, there are some perks. It’s an excellent choice for older adults who do not want to move again, should they ever need to move on to a nursing home facility.

Continued care will place your loved one within the community at a level of independent living. While at this level of care, they may still receive help with tasks like medication management, shopping, and home care. However, once your loved one transitions into needing more specialized 24-hour care, they will be easily moved within the community to an environment they will be better suited to. 

Residential Home Care 

Residential home care is the perfect option for someone looking for more specialized care but remains living in a more of a home setting. These are often referred to as board and care homes or adult family homes. Your loved one may live amongst a small group of other residents within the home. 

A significant appeal to these homes is often the price. Families generally pay less than an assisted living facility. 

Independent Living Options

Not to be confused with assisted living, these are condos or apartment complexes that are age-restricted for seniors only. Your family member will live on their own, so this is best suited for someone who is still able to care for themselves both physically and mentally. Due to the overall feeling of freedom your loved one will still have, this is a very popular option for those who do qualify. 

An added benefit to this form of living is that these apartments and condos are generally subsidized. The complex takes under consideration the average amount seniors are living on with Social Security and disability payments.

This makes monthly payments rather affordable. To find some of these age-restricted complexes, check out this site for senior housing available in D.C. 

The Village Movement 

The village itself is not a facility your senior would be living at. This refers to a network of non-profits making up the networks. The ‘village’ or rather the concierge is someone within the community that will help the elderly residents when needed. 

Each local area has its village office, a number that elder members of the community can contact when they need help with a specific task. These tasks can include transportation services, household handyman help, etc. Since these members are residing within their own homes, they should have the ability to take care of themselves 100%.

Most elderly adults who are living in a village concept are fairly active. They don’t have any ailments that would prevent them from completing most of their daily tasks on their own. The benefits of this method of living are that your loved one gets to stay in the home that means so much to them, as well as have a great sense of community

Aging In Place 

This method of living is very attractive to an elder who does not want to leave their home. Aging in place simply means staying within their home and aging where they are. If a loved one is definitively against moving, this may be a good option. 

If your loved one does need help with certain everyday tasks such as cooking, cleaning, or bathing, you may need to consider an in-home nurse or visiting nurse. By incorporating a nurse or caregiver, you can be assured your loved one is safe and being well taken care of. 

Memory Care Communities 

Memory care communities in D.C. offer a lifestyle very similar to assisted living facilities. So what’s the difference? 

Memory care staff typically have better training in assisting patients with illnesses such as Alzheimer’s or dementia. In an assisted living community, not every staff member is required to have the training a memory care staff member would have.  Since these illnesses require a greater level of care, patients are better suited in a specialized memory care facility. 

Maple Heights: One Of The Best In Senior Housing D.C. Has To Offer 

While on the hunt for the best senior housing community that would be best for your loved one, taking the time to find somewhere they will be safe, happy, and well taken care of may take some time. As it should!

Ensuring your loved ones will be comfortable with their new living experience is of the most importance. While searching for senior housing in D.C., schedule a visit today with Maple Heights so you and your family member can make a confident decision together. 

Alzheimer's progression Senior Living Tips & Advice

7 Signs of Alzheimer’s Progression and When Memory Care…

Loving somebody with Alzheimer’s disease can feel like a lonely road. But know you’re not alone.

More than one in nine American senior citizens live with this devastating condition. Many more people watch as it progressively impairs the mind of somebody they know.

If you suspect the onset of this disease in a loved one, early intervention will help keep them safe and potentially slow down the progression of this devastating disease.

Please read on to learn seven signs of Alzheimer’s progression and when to seek memory care.

1. Forgetfulness

Everybody will experience a little brain fuzz and forget something now and again. With age, forgetfulness tends to increase a little.

In the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease, this symptom may seem like normal aging. But, pay attention if your loved one seems noticeably forgetful.

Do not laugh off daily habits of forgetting things. Ask their doctor if they should undergo screening.

Do not feel completely helpless as you watch your loved one develop one of the most devastating dementia symptoms. Even if you do not know whether or not you see the onset of this disease, you can help.

Research shows that exercise may help slow the onset of dementia. Take walks and join a gentle yoga class with your loved one. Even if it is only normal forgetfulness, this will keep their body strong and healthy.

Brain stimulating activities also delay dementia progression. Craft memory books and play games like eye spy to keep exercising their memory center.

Social activities also keep the brain sharp. Senior living communities keep seniors closely connected with their peers.

2. Confusion

Does your loved one seem confused about simple things? By affecting cognition, this disease can cause people to not know where or when they are.

It may begin by getting lost going to familiar places in the beginning. Eventually, they may simply act confused out of nowhere, even in their own home. 

This can feel very scary. Tell them their whereabouts, even if they keep asking, and reassure them that they are safe with you.

3. Trouble With Typical Tasks

With age, everyday things gradually feel a little more difficult than they used to. The body tires out quicker and loses some strength.

But, unless a physical disability prevents them, a healthy senior citizen should be able to still complete most age-appropriate tasks. If your loved one starts struggling with grocery shopping, cleaning, and other family simple activities, keep a close eye on them for other signs of disease progression.

Changes in different areas of the brain can affect motor function to information processing. These struggles can put them at risk when doing things like driving or cooking.

4. Lack of Concentration

Our ability to concentrate allows us to direct mental energy towards the task at hand. Losing focus makes people seem inattentive and sometimes spastic as they move from one thing to the next. 

A lack of concentration can also make your loved one seem suddenly spacey. While we all experience appearing this way from time to time, it should not become a normal part of a person’s behavior.

If your loved one acts inattentive, spaced out, or all over the place often, ask if something bothers them. Dealing with hardship or feeling overwhelmed from too much on your plate can cause this as well. But, if this behavior comes out of the blue, ask the doctor to check for Alzheimer’s progression.

5. Planning Problems

When you make solid plans with a person and they do not show up, it can feel frustrating. If this happens more than once, it turns infuriating.

But, if this seems out of place for your loved one, do not simply label them as rude. Ask others if they noticed this happening as well.

Also, notice how they act while coming up with a plan. Does it seem frustrating? As the disease progresses, they may lose the ability to plan altogether.

6. Difficulty Communicating

You may notice difficulty with communications as Alzheimer’s disease progresses. At first, they may lose their train of thought more than normal.

Struggling to find the appropriate word can be a sign as well. Or, your loved one may keep using the same word over and over, since it feels familiar and they cannot think of another one.

As the disease moves forward, the names of common objects may slip the person’s mind. This can lead to them describing the item.

Give them time to think and speak, rather than finishing the sentence for them. Remove distractions and keep your patience.

7. Personality Changes

As Alzheimer’s symptoms progress, you may struggle at times to recognize your loved one. At first, it may seem like moodiness.

But as time goes on, they may act fearful, paranoid, and angry as a side effect of the cognitive impairments. This can feel incredibly heartbreaking for loved ones.

Remind them of positive things they used to do and say to help you both hold onto that person you love. Do not take these personality changes personally, especially if they turn against you at the moment.

When to Choose Memory Care

Of course, you want to keep your loved ones home where they feel loved. But, as Alzheimer’s disease progresses, you should continuously assess if this remains the best option.

You should put your loved one into memory care when:

  • They escape and get lost
  • Accidents happen
  • You cannot keep them completely safe
  • The caregivers feel burnt out
  • You no longer know how to care for them
  • Your loved one needs more care than you can provide

Senior living facilities with memory care provide a safe and enriching environment, specifically for dementia patients. Medical professionals and trained staff take care of and watch over them, and allow you to live your life as well.

Take Alzheimer’s Progression Seriously

Nobody wants to believe that their loved one is losing a battle to any disease. But, do not ignore the signs of Alzheimer’s progression. 

Your loved one will need an increasing amount of care as the disease progresses to keep them safe, and we want to help. Take a digital tour and then schedule an appointment today.

memory care vs assisted living Senior Living Tips & Advice

Memory Care vs Assisted Living: The Key Differences, Explained

Over the next four decades, the senior population will increase to almost 100 million, nearly double what it is now. This is welcome news to many families who want to keep their loved ones around as long as possible. But, aging comes with a specific set of needs, all primarily determined by the individual.

If your loved one has shown signs that it’s no longer safe for them to live alone, you may have started the search for care options, such as Alzheimer’s care. Your search may reveal that memory care and assisted living are sometimes used interchangeably. However, they describe different services. 

Continue reading to learn about the critical differences between memory care vs assisted living and how to choose the right setting for your loved one.

What Is Assisted Living?

The most important thing to note about assisted living facilities is that they are not the same thing as nursing homes. At a nursing home, residents require care and monitoring at all times.

Assisted living is a supportive setting for older adults who live independent lives but need daily assistance with self-care tasks. These tasks range from meeting nutritional needs to administering medication. Also, the rooms are designed to encourage independent living, and some may also include a kitchenette for light meal preparation.

And, while every community will have different offerings, some amenities might include having

  • a private movie theatre
  • a full-service beauty salon
  • a gym or physical fitness center
  • and even an on-site restaurant

Invite your loved one to list out some amenities that they truly couldn’t live without. Then, prioritize those requests when deciding on a community. For example, if Mom is a huge movie buff who is always ready for a matinee, having an easily accessible theatre is a non-negotiable for her to live an enriched life.

The Benefits of Assisted Living

It’s no surprise that some seniors have more hours in the day after retirement than they know what to do with. Also, unless they have access to a vibrant senior community, their social needs are not met. This can lead to feelings of boredom, apathy, and depression.

This is why a top benefit of assisted living is that it provides a safe community setting where there is always something to do and someone to talk to. This allows the senior in your life to maintain independence so they can lead a rich and stimulating life.

With access to world-class dining, nutritional support, and a robust athletics program, you can rest easy knowing that your loved one is encouraged to live healthier than ever.

An assisted living facility will also adjust assistance levels as needed to accommodate your loved one’s needs changing over time, so you never have to worry about gaps in their care. 

What is Memory Care?

Memory care is a care community that focuses on seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, or other cognitive forms of memory loss. With memory care, seniors will receive the same support that their cohorts receive in assisted living. These will include assistance with meals, medications, and personal hygiene.

One of the main benefits of memory care is safety. 

For example, at home, you may have noticed your loved one confused and wandering outside of their room in the middle of the night. Unfortunately, this is a symptom of memory loss and is very common. In response, memory care facilities build safety into the environment.

These are the typical safety features a memory loss unit may employ to keep residents safe

  • Doors leading to stairwells, outside, and into other potentially hazardous locations have alarms to alert staff of entry
  • Gardens, patios, and all outdoor spaces are enclosed to prevent wandering out of the facility
  • Some sites will also offer a tracking bracelet to allow for safe, independent movement

Now that you know what each community can offer, it’s time to discuss the differences between memory care vs assisted living.

Memory Care Vs Assisted Living: The Main Differences

In an assisted living facility, your dear relative will have access to a broad range of activities and social events that they can choose to partake in. These are fun, optional activities that serve to add some luster to everyday life. 

However, this differs from memory care, where daily activities are scheduled and expected. In addition to delaying the progression of Alzheimer’s and dementia, these activities create the necessary stability and comfort of a routine. 

Assisted living facilities residents are given menus and posted meal times so that they can plan their day.

This differs from in a memory care unit where everything is structured. In memory care, residents are brought to and from meals at set times every day. This ensures that every resident receives the care they need.

However, with assisted living or memory care, your loved one’s specific needs should determine the level of assistance they receive.

Choosing a Care Center

When deciding between memory care vs assisted living, the only thing to consider is if your loved one has shown signs of memory impairment or cognitive decline. In this case, they would benefit most from a residential care home that has a memory care unit. 

When searching, you will want to tour a residential care center before you make a decision. In addition to making sure that the amenities and meals match the expectations of your loved one, you will also want to make sure that the center is clean and well-maintained. And, don’t be shy about asking residents or their relatives about their experiences.

At Maple Heights Senior Living, located in Washington DC, we offer a range of services to meet diverse aging needs and spacious luxury suites. When you are ready to learn more, contact us to schedule a tour.

elderly care Senior Living Tips & Advice

7 Ways Elderly Care Can Help the Whole Family:…

Some people, as they age, are able to take care of themselves without care from family members. Many others will require long-term elderly care when they reach an advanced age. In fact, 70% of people aged 65 or older will need long-term care services. With that said, has your loved one reached an age where they need constant supervision?

Do you have the time and commitment to take care of your loved one? If so, it may be time to consider enrolling your loved one in an assisted living community. There are several assisted living benefits you should consider before making your decision.

Below, you’ll learn everything there is to know about assisted care facilities and their advantages. 

What is Elderly Care?

Elderly care is the professional supervision of senior citizens. There are many different forms of elderly care, from senior living communities to assisted care. Elderly care is an umbrella term to describe services to assist senior citizens living at home or living at a campus. 

1. Your Loved One Will Received Personalized Care

Many people are apprehensive about enrolling their loved ones in assisted care facilities. This is usually because they believe they can take better care of their loved ones than complete strangers. Granted, there is some truth to this belief. However, what if your relative has been recently diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease?

Do you have the expertise to deal with a family member experiencing long-term, rapid memory loss? Most people would agree that they lack the resources or know-how to deal with the long-term memory loss of their loved ones. Fortunately, assisted care facilities create personalized care plans for their patients. 

This way, they can provide the best care for your loved one with clarity and precision. 

2. They Can Help With Daily Activities

An assisted living community helps elderly patients live their everyday lives with an extra hand. For example, if your loved one needs help with performing chores or daily tasks, a trained specialist will assist them as needed. This will help you focus on work and other important duties in your life, knowing that your relative is well taken of. 

An assisted care specialist can handle all of the tasks that your loved needs to have done every day, such as:

  • Washing dishes
  • Doing laundry
  • Going grocery shopping
  • Cleaning around the home

No longer will your loved one neglect important tasks around their home. When you contact an assisted living community, you can receive peace of mind knowing these duties will be taken care of. 

3. Your Loved One Will Be Safer

As your relative ages, they will become naturally unable to perform certain tasks. For example, many elderly people become unable to drive safely on the road. Others need help traveling down the stairs or cooking at home. Having a professional to assist your loved one is essential. 

This way, people can avoid the scary outcome of their loved ones injuring themselves alone. If you’re afraid that your relative will hurt themselves at home, it’s best to contact an assisted living community for assistance. 

4. Your Loved One Will Engage With Others

Social engagement is beneficial for everyone, regardless of their age. According to a study from Harvard University, elderly people with an active social life may experience slower memory decline over time. Regular social activities can eliminate isolation and prevent depression. 

This can improve the quality of life of your relative as they enjoy a variety of regular social activities with other people. If you can’t always spend quality time with your loved one, it may be time to consider enrolling them in an assisted living community

5. Your Loved One Can Receive Access to Healthcare Facilities

As your relative ages, they may require around-the-clock nursing care. Assisted care facilities provide top-quality healthcare on site. This ensures that their mental and physical well-being will be properly maintained. This healthcare will already complement the care your loved one is currently receiving. 

It will also ensure that your relative’s health is being closely monitored in case they have chronic health conditions, such as:

  • Diabetes
  • Heart disease
  • Dementia
  • Arthritis

On your own, you’ll be responsible for noticing changes in your relative’s condition and consulting a doctor on your behalf. Working with an assisted care facility will help take this burden away from you. 

6. These Facilities Provide a Comfortable Setting

Convincing your loved one to enter an assisting living community may be challenging. This is because many elderly people have built an emotional attachment to their homes. Sometimes, they may believe you’re forcing them to leave their home to live in an unfamiliar place.

In reality, assisted living communities are designed with high-level comfort in mind. These communities provide several amenities, including:

  • Chapel services
  • Beauty salons
  • Swimming pools
  • Communal areas

Many assisted communities may be more comfortable than a relative’s own home. 

7. These Facilities Can Save You More Time

Taking care of your loved one is an enormous task. Most adults juggle several responsibilities, such as managing their careers and children. On top of that, they have to be there for their relatives as they grow older. This can become difficult over time and cause you to overburden yourself. 

Eventually, you’ll need to consider contacting an assisted living community if you can’t manage all of your responsibilities. These facilities employ well-trained staff that can take on this burden for you. This way, you can be certain your loved one will receive the attention they need and deserve. 

Schedule a Tour of Our Elderly Care Facility

If you don’t have the time to look after your loved one, choosing an elderly care facility may be your best choice. Making the right selection will ensure that your elderly relative is paid close attention to. With that said, are you searching for a reputable assisted living community for your loved one?

Maple Heights Senior Living has built a strong reputation as one of the leading assisted living communities in Washington D.C. Contact us today to schedule a tour of our facility and make the right decision for your loved one. 

assisted living Senior Living Tips & Advice

How To Help a Loved One Transition to Assisted…

As of 2014, the senior population accounted for 14.9% of the US population. By 2060, the number of people ages 65 and up could reach 98.2 million. With the number of seniors continuing to grow, the number of residents in assisted living facilities has, too.

Are you trying to help your loved one transition into assisted living in Washington, DC? Here are six tips that might help.

With these tips, you’ll have peace of mind that your loved one is receiving the care they need. You can ensure their comfort and wellbeing as well.

The transition can feel like a big change, but it doesn’t have to feel like a stressful one. Keep reading to learn how to help your loved one adjust today. 

1. Find the Right Fit

First, it’s important to make sure you find the right assisted living facility. Otherwise, your loved one won’t feel comfortable. If they can’t feel comfortable, they likely won’t feel happy, either.

There are now nearly 29,000 residential care facilities across the country with 996,000 licensed beds. Not every facility will offer the amenities your loved one needs, though.

Before choosing a facility, sit down with your loved one. Ask them about what they need. For example, you might want to consider:

  • Social services
  • Security
  • Fun activities
  • 24-hour supervision
  • Health care management
  • Wellness and exercise programs
  • Transportation
  • Housekeeping and laundry
  • Medical assistance
  • Meals

Consider your loved one’s daily routine, too. For example, do they get bored easily? Make sure to find a facility that offers mental stimulation. 

Does your loved one have limited mobility? Make sure the staff will remain available to help your loved one move around.

Think about your loved one’s health, too. For example, you might need to look for memory care in Washington, DC. Focusing on their distinct needs will help you narrow down your options. 

Then, head online to find a few facilities. You can call to request:

  • Pricing
  • A map of the facility
  • A copy of the residents’ rights and rules
  • Brochures that list amenities and features
  • Floor plans

Make a list of questions you want to ask each facility, too. For example, ask about the training their team receives. Consider the ratio between residents and staff as well.

Complete this research with your loved one. Make them part of the choice.

They’ll likely feel more comfortable with the decision if they have a say.

2. Make Sure It Feels Like Home

Once you’ve chosen an assisted living facility, help your loved one feel at home.

For example, you can help them customize their living space. They’ll likely feel more comfortable if the environment looks a little familiar. 

Try bringing decor and wall art from their previous home. Start decorating using momentos from their life. Don’t forget family photos, too.

Try to arrange the furniture and decor in a way that’s similar to the setup in their previous home. 

Adding these personal touches can help your loved one transition into their new home.

Before moving in, make sure to contact the facility about packing, moving, and unpacking. Some facilities offer to help you with this process.

Once your loved one moves in, you can help them get acclimated.

3. Help Them Socialize

The first week your loved one is in the assisted living facility is essential. They won’t adjust overnight. However, helping them grow familiar with their new surroundings can make a big difference.

First, help them get acquainted with their neighbors. Go with them to meet the people living next door. They could potentially make a new friend.

Try to encourage your loved one to meet as many new people as possible.

The people they meet could help them grow more comfortable. They’ll have support, even when you’re not there.

While at the facility, take the time to familiarize yourself with the community caregivers and staff, too. The staff will assess your loved one’s needs. With their help, you can create a care plan with your loved one’s needs in mind.

Bring other family members to visit during the first week as well. Everyone can grow more familiar with your loved one’s new surroundings.

Bringing other family members could help them adjust without feeling abandoned.

Try creating a schedule to ensure each family member gets the chance to visit. 

4. Get Involved

Take the time to learn more about the social programming the assisted living DC facility offers. These events can help your loved one socialize. Ask the facility if there are any events you can participate in, too.

Try to get more involved with your loved one’s facility. Attending these events can help your loved one transition.

They might discover a few new favorite activities that they’ll start to look forward to. 

Encourage your loved one to get involved with a club or group, too. For example, they might consider a gardening or book club.

You can speak with the community social director to learn more about the programs available.

5. Grant Them Independence

Some seniors are concerned about moving into a living facility because they’re worried they’ll lose their independence. Help your loved one find ways to keep their independence.

For example, maybe your loved one loves to cook. Ask if they’ll have access to a kitchen. They’ll feel more comfortable doing something they love. 

In the meantime, remain their advocate. They might need your help asking for things, even if they don’t want to admit it.

6. Remain Patient

As you work through this process of moving your loved one into a memory care DC facility, remain patient. Remember, the transition doesn’t happen overnight.

Expect a few setbacks along the way. Your loved one might feel lonely or struggle to make friends. It’s a normal part of the process.

You can help them through it to ensure they’re happy in their new living situation. 

Moving into Assisted Living: 6 Tips for Helping a Loved One Transition

Transitioning a loved one into an assisted living facility can feel hard. With these tips, you can make it a little easier for yourself and your loved one. Help your loved one see how much they’ll gain by moving into a facility.

Your loved one’s wellbeing is our priority. We’re here to help.

Schedule a tour to get a taste of the best in senior living today.

memory care Senior Living Tips & Advice

How Does Memory Care Help Seniors With Memory Loss?

Do you have a loved one who is experiencing a condition that causes cognitive decline and memory loss? 

Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia are common amongst the elderly. There are nearly 10 million new cases of dementia every year worldwide. It’s a debilitating illness with no known cure. 

Many people choose to put their elderly loved ones in memory care when they can no longer manage their dementia. A memory care facility is a great way to help your elderly loved ones while they’re in their twilight years.

But how does memory care help? Is an assisted living facility really the best choice for your loved one, or should you keep them at home? 

Keep reading to learn all about how memory care helps seniors who are experiencing dementia or other types of memory loss or cognitive decline. 

What Is Memory Care?

Memory care is a type of assisted living. It’s often offered at standard retirement and assisted living communities, and many seniors find that they need to transition into memory care as they get older.

Memory care specifically focuses on people who have cognitive decline from dementia. 

People with dementia struggle with their memories, behavior, cognitive abilities, and even completing simple tasks. As dementia develops, people struggle to take care of themselves.

Memory care facilities help. They can help seniors transition into a safe and peaceful lifestyle and even take steps to improve or maintain their cognitive abilities.

While there’s no cure for dementia, it can be manageable with the proper care. Here are a few benefits of memory care as they apply to dementia patients. 

Security

One of the biggest problems that people with dementia face is security. It’s also one of the issues with keeping your elderly loved ones with dementia home with you.

People with dementia are prone to leaving the house without warning. They may wander around late at night or in the early mornings when no one is around to monitor them. 

This is a huge hazard.

When your loved one is in a memory care facility, you know that they’re secure. There’s staff nearby to check on your loved one and the doors are locked and monitored. 

When your loved one wants to go outside, they have the security of enclosed grounds and caretakers. 

Safety

Speaking of security, safety is also a problem for people who are experiencing memory loss or cognitive decline. Not only are there safety issues associated with wandering around unattended, but other problems can arise.

While many elderly people are at risk of falls and injuries, people with dementia may be at greater risk. Falls are not an inherent risk of dementia, but that doesn’t mean that dementia doesn’t influence them

People with dementia often aren’t getting enough physical activity. They also may not remember places where they’ve fallen in the past, or take notice of their surroundings. 

Someone with dementia may also not be able to voice their problems. If someone is experiencing illness or pain, the average onlooker might not notice. 

In memory care, there’s always someone nearby who can identify any risks or problems and help when necessary. 

Enrichment Opportunities

Enrichment is crucial for people who are experiencing cognitive decline and memory loss. While you can enrich an elderly family member at home, it’s far better for them to have full-time enrichment opportunities when they’re in a memory care facility.

At these facilities, people with dementia still maintain social lives while they’re able to. Because there are other people in memory care, they can all interact and bond. This helps with maintaining good cognitive health. 

People in memory care also stay on their own schedules. When you’re taking care of someone at home, it’s easy to fall into the habit of letting them do things at their own pace. While it’s important to let people make their own decisions and stay comfortable, establishing a routine is actually good for cognition. 

People in memory care will also get to partake in enrichment activities like art, physical activity (if possible), and games. Staying active both mentally and physically can help with memory and cognition. 

Experienced Staff

Caregiving is hard work, and it’s a full-time job. Keeping your loved one at home might mean that you struggle with balance or that you aren’t able to give them the care and attention that they need. 

In a memory care facility, you know that there are compassionate and experienced staff members nearby at all times to help your loved one. 

Your loved one will receive around-the-clock care. Caregivers can help with daily tasks, enrichment activities, and healthcare needs. In the event of a medical emergency, your loved one can get help right away.

Personal Care

In a memory care facility, you know that your loved one is going to receive personalized care plans and attentive care for all of their needs. 

People with cognitive conditions need help with normal tasks. They may need help bathing, using the restroom, housekeeping, and even remembering to take their medications. This can be dangerous if there’s no one nearby to help.

While this is overwhelming for someone who isn’t a professional caregiver, a memory care facility is a perfect place for this. 

Does Your Loved One Need Memory Care?

Memory care is the best option for people who are experiencing dementia or Alzheimer’s. It helps patients maintain certain cognitive abilities, stay social, and live happy and safe lives. 

A memory care facility is the safest and most secure place that your loved one can go. 

If you’re looking for memory care in Washington DC, we want to help. At Maple Heights Senior Living, our compassionate team is ready to help your loved one. Contact us to schedule a tour today.

 

 

assisted living Senior Living Tips & Advice

A Connected Community: What Is Assisted Living Really Like?

When mom, dad, or another elderly relative starts to get older you may notice that they just aren’t able to take care of themselves anymore. Suddenly, driving becomes a danger and even just going up the stairs puts them at risk for a fall. 

While these are perfectly normal parts of growing older, they may also be indicators that it’s time for your family member to go into elderly care. More specifically, they may need to go to an assisted living center. 

If you’re nervous about sending someone to an assisted living center, don’t stress. We’ve put together a little guide to answer your questions about what is assisted living like. 

A Typical Day at an Assisted Living Community

One of the best ways to answer the question “what is it like to be in assisted living” is to go over a daily routine. Assisted living communities have set routines that help their seniors feel at ease and get a sense of fulfillment throughout their day. 

Mornings

In an assisted living community, there is 24-hour supervision just in case something happens, but that doesn’t mean that you have to accept it. In fact, seniors in assisted living communities are welcome to get up on their own schedule. 

The first person most seniors see when they wake up is a nurse or caregiver who will check on them and make sure everything is normal. They may take their vitals and give them any morning vitamins and prescriptions they usually take. 

Seniors who require a little extra assistance can get help taking a shower or getting dressed. That help is available throughout the day, too, in case they need extra assistance completing their other routines. 

Afternoons

During the afternoon, most seniors are completely free to do as they choose. There are often activities scheduled by the staff that they are able to take part in. 

For religious members of the community, they may be able to attend a religious service or complete other activities. Or, they may receive visits from family members. 

Evenings

The day usually begins to wind up after the evening meal. While seniors are welcome to stay up as late as they choose, many residents tend to go to sleep early. 

Sometimes there are more activities planned that a resident may want to take part in. Or, they may choose to spend time with friends or simply take time to rest and unwind in their apartment. 

At bend time, a nurse usually comes by the room to see if help is needed. They’ll assist them with getting any nightly medications, undressing, and getting into bed if needed. 

There are buttons in every room in case a resident needs emergency assistance. This is also useful if a resident ever needs extra company or simply wants to stay up a little later. 

Meals in Assisted Living Communities

There’s often a misconception that assisted living communities have terrible food. People picture pureed meals at every turn of the head and worry that their loved ones won’t enjoy mealtime. 

However, this isn’t the case. Many assisted living communities have a dining room where they are able to enjoy breakfast, lunch, and dinner at predetermined times. 

The staff at the community will be aware of any dietary restrictions a resident has and will make sure to offer several choices for entrees and sides. Some assisted living communities also offer apartments that have kitchens in case a resident wants to cook on their own. 

On top of that, many assisted living communities have cafeterias where residents can enjoy a snack. This is also a great place for them to meet with visiting friends and family members. 

Typical Activities in an Assisted Living Community

One of the many perks of living in assisted living community is that life is never dull. There are constantly activities running that you can participate in if you choose. 

For instance, many facilities offer opportunities for activities such as: 

  • Yoga mats
  • Golf balls and small putting courses
  • Arts and crafts materials
  • Swimming
  • Library books
  • Woodworking
  • Billiard tables
  • Board and card games

There are many different activities and supplies that you can use at your leisure. Typically, you’ll be able to rent or borrow the equipment so that you can enjoy your favorite activities. 

More scheduled activities are also available. These are a great opportunity for you to meet friends and get to know the people in your community. A few examples include: 

  • Aerobics classes
  • Educational opportunities
  • Language classes
  • Shopping excursions
  • Restaurant outings
  • Book clubs
  • Musical entertainment
  • Crafting classes
  • Happy hours
  • Social events and mixers

 

One of the benefits of assisted living communities is that they’re designed for everyone. You’re able to connect with people who share the same hobbies as you or you’re able to learn something new. 

Many times, assisted living communities will allow visiting friends and family members to participate in activities too. This can be hugely comforting for new residents who are still learning their way around the community

Get Support for an Aging Relative

It can be tough to admit that you need help, especially if you’re used to having your independence. However, if you or an elderly relative is beginning to struggle with daily tasks, an assisted living facility can be a saving grace. 

What’s more, it can be a place where residents can find community and relaxation. These facilities offer safe and comfortable places for seniors to retire. 

If you’re looking for an assisted living center, Maple Heights Living is a beautiful, boutique option. Check out our floor plans and reserve a tour today. 

assisted living Senior Living Tips & Advice

How to Talk to an Elderly Parent About Assisted…

Do you feel like you’re ready to have the talk with your elderly loved one? It is never easy to suggest moving a parent into assisted living, yet there comes a time when it could be necessary. 

Whether your loved one is dealing with a chronic illness, suffering from close calls, lives far away, or has difficulties completing daily tasks, moving them into assisted living can help bring you some peace of mind. 

The real issue is bringing up the topic and convincing a parent or loved one that moving is what is best for them. They might feel like they’re losing out on some independence, or they’re getting older. 

Be sure to keep reading for our guide on how to talk to an elderly parent about assisted living. 

Start the Discussion

The best way to get started with figuring out how to convince someone to go into assisted living is by starting the discussion. Once you start the conversation about assisted living don’t drop it. You will want to talk about it over time and not all at once. 

Bring up the subject to your elderly loved one and see how they react. If it is a good reaction, you can go into more detail. Yet, if it isn’t the reaction you were hoping for, wait to talk about it again in the future. 

You won’t get any results unless you try, so don’t be afraid to start the discussion

When you do talk about assisted living to them be sure to mention great points. You can talk about how an assisted living will help them complete tasks that they struggle with each day and make their lives easier. 

You’ll find that mentioning assisted living over time will make the discussion and final push easier.

Be Prepared For Emotions

When you’re thinking of how to convince a parent to go to a nursing home, you need to be prepared for any emotions they might be going through. No one is ready to admit that they need help and they’re getting older. 

Be sure to give your parents time to adjust and feel each of their emotions.

You should also be there to listen to them if they want to vent about the situation. Make sure that you’re listening to their concerns as they are valid. 

Don’t Do It Alone

If you have siblings or other family members, try to get them involved in the conversation. Once you’ve mentioned it to your parents, get more people involved in the conversation. 

Having a group meeting can be the final push that your parents need to agree to move to assisted living. 

When you have more than one person that is talking to them about it, they might want to listen more. It won’t feel like it is only coming from one person, but rather everyone feels like they could benefit. 

Show Them a Digital Tour

If you’re trying to figure out how to convince someone to go to a nursing home or assisted living, one of the best things to do is show them a digital tour.

One reason they might be against the idea of moving is that they aren’t sure of what to expect. Many people have seen what nursing homes and assisted living facilities are like from movies, but you’ll find that they’re much different in real life. 

An online digital tour can help to show them what an assisted living facility is truly like instead of them imagining it. They will be able to see rooms, community areas, laundry facilities, kitchens, and so much more. 

When elderly parents get to see it for themselves, they will be more likely to agree to make the move. 

Talk About Amenities

Once you’ve shown them around the place, another way for you to learn how to convince a parent to go to assisted living is by talking with them about the amenities. Doing your research and letting them know all the great amenities the assisted living home will have can be a good way to persuade an elderly parent. 

For example, many elderly people don’t get the chance to get exercise. An assisted living facility can have an exercise room with the proper equipment and care that they will need to do exercise whenever they want.

Another great perk is having a theatre room or beautiful gardens. These are awesome ways to spend their time so they won’t be bored. 

You’ll find that by bringing up the amenities an assisted living facility has to offer, you can help to convince your elderly parents to move. 

It Is Their Decision

When talking to elderly parents about moving to a nursing home or assisted living facility, you need to make sure that you don’t act as the decision has already been made. Instead, you need to let them believe it is their decision. 

The best way to do this is by doing tons of research and laying it all out in front of them. You can tell them all the assisted living benefits and show them around on a tour to help make up their mind. 

Yet, talking to them as if your mind is already made up can make them feel like their independence is already being taken away. Make it be your number one priority that they must decide to make the final decision. 

You’ll find it is much easier to convince elderly parents to move to assisted living if it is their idea. 

Talking to an Elderly Parent About Assisted Living

If you’re trying to talk to an elderly parent about moving to assisted living, be sure to use our tips to get started. There are ways to bring up the conversation and begin convincing the person you love that it is a good idea and will help them out. 

Once your elderly parent is finally ready to make the move, we have you covered. You can check out our floor plans and we can walk you through all the steps to get started. 

best senior living community Senior Living Tips & Advice

A Step-by-Step Guide on How to Find the Best…

Are you trying to find the best senior living community for your loved one? Perhaps you’re a senior who is curious about living in a senior community

Regardless, not all senior living communities are equal. Some offer specialized services that may not be conducive to your situation. That’s why you must research each facility carefully before making a final decision.

Conduct your research based on what type of care you need, how much you can afford, and where you want to live. However, other factors will help you make the right decision.

This article will show you how to choose a senior living community effectively. Let’s explore. 

1. Determine Your Care Level

Before making inquiries, decide what type of care that you or your loved one need. The different types of senior living communities include: 

Each type of community comes with different amenities. That said, some assisted living facilities offer memory care and assisted living benefits in one location.

Many assisted living communities offer no levels of care. In general, assisted communities offer assistance to residents who need help with routine tasks.

Assistance may involve helping residents get dressed, helping them take their medications, or helping residents with mobility issues. Residents can still maintain an independent lifestyle but with a little assistance along the way. 

2. Determine Your Budget

After assessing your needs, determine how much you can afford. The price depends on several factors, such as your care requirements and the state you live in.

On average, the cost of a senior living community is around $4,000 a month. Senior facilities range from low-priced to high-end. 

Come up with a price point based on your financial situation. If you’re a senior who is struggling financially, ask family members for assistance.

  • Note: Ask the facility if your care plan comes with additional expenses. For example, some facilities charge extra for laundry services. Plus, you may have to pay move-in expenses. 

Moreover, find out if any of your current benefits will pay for your care. Benefits can come in the form of:

  • Social Security
  • Medicare/Medicaid
  • VA benefits
  • Local government Assistance
  • Life insurance policies

Also, consider retirement income, including other assets such as pensions or annuities. A pension plan will pay for living expenses as well. You can also talk to a family advisor for further guidance. 

3. Narrow Your Target

After establishing the right budget, narrow down the facilities in a particular location. Do you want to stay within a certain area? Perhaps you want to remain close to your family. Regardless, read online reviews about the facility. From there, narrow down the top five communities.

2. Tour the Facilities

Next, you should tour each facility. Contact each facility, and set up an appointment to visit. During your visit, you should do the following:

  • Meet the staff and residents
  • Visit the rooms
  • See the common areas
  • Look at the amenities
  • Sample the food

Above all, picture yourself living at the facility.

Ask the Right Questions

Treat the touring process as if you’re buying a home. Would you feel comfortable living there? Further, smell the air around you. Is the air fresh?

Assess the cleanliness level of the facility as well. The outside surroundings are just as important. Consider the following when assessing the grounds:

  • Do the grounds have adequate parking?
  • Are the buildings well-maintained?
  • Does the parking lot have enough handicap spaces?
  • Are the walking areas safe and well-lit?
  • Do the grounds have exquisite landscaping or gardens?

Additionally, learn more about the neighborhood. Is it a safe area that’s quiet?

When meeting with other residents, try to talk to them when the staff isn’t around. Residents are more likely to give you an honest assessment of the place when a staff member isn’t present.

They can also tell you more about the neighborhood. Residents will be candid about other things, such as the food quality and staff friendliness.  

When talking to the staff, ask as many questions as needed. If you value privacy, for example, ask about the rooms.

Some facilities provide shared rooms while others offer private rooms. Ask the tour guide about private or shared bathrooms as well. 

Determine if the tour guide is listening to your questions. Some tour guides may pressure you along the tour. However, the best tour guides listen to your needs and include your family members in conversations.

The facility should include family members as well. Ask the tour guide if family members can join during activities or mealtimes. A facility that includes family members will residents happier. 

1. Make Your Decision In a Timely Fashion

Choosing a facility is important, but you shouldn’t take too long to decide. More importantly, don’t procrastinate. If an emergency arises, you may end up in a less-than-ideal environment.  

Instead, take your time to decide after conducting research. The decision process may take weeks or months. To decide faster, talk to an advisor or your family members for further guidance. 

Finding the Best Senior Living Community

Finding the best senior living community involves careful planning and research. Determining your care requirements should be the number one factor. Then, create a budget to narrow down your search.

Research the top facilities that apply to you, and schedule a visit. Ask plenty of questions when touring the place, and observe the surroundings. Finally, choose the best one that suits your comfort level. 

Want to know why you should choose an assisted living facility in Washington D.C.? Click here to learn more.

assisted living Senior Living Tips & Advice

5 Reasons Your Elderly Family Member Should Be in…

Do you have an elderly family member in your life and you’re worried about them living on their own? Maybe they have trouble using the stairs or making their dinner for themselves. 

Whatever it is, growing old comes along with many challenges, and it can be tough for friends and family to know what they need to do. That’s why assisted living is one of the best places for elderly family members!

If you’re on the fence about whether you should bring up assisted living to an elderly family member, we have your back. 

Be sure to keep reading for our guide to the five reasons your elderly family member could benefit from assisted living.

1. They Need a Community

Sometimes getting older means that you get more lonely. People stop calling, writing, or even visiting. It can also be harder for elderly people to go out and do their usual activities where they would socialize with friends and family. 

Assisted living facilities can help give elderly family members a sense of community.

When you move to an assisted living home, your family member won’t need to be stuck in their room all day. Instead, they will have the freedom to get out and meet with other people living in the same situation. They might find people interested in the same hobbies and be able to make new friends. 

Finding an assisted living home can help to make them feel less lonely. Feeling less lonely can help with depression and can even give them an overall sense of happiness. 

2. Not Eating Healthy Balanced Meals

We all know that we need to eat a healthy breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Yet sometimes seniors can forget, or they don’t bother when they live alone. If you’ve noticed that an elderly family member is skipping meals or having trouble getting healthy foods, you might consider talking about assisted living. 

Your elderly family member needs to be safe at home. That means eating three balanced healthy meals. An assisted living facility will ensure that they’re eating enough and eating the right things. 

For some people, they might have relied on someone else their entire life to get their meals for them. If that person is now gone, it is going to be more difficult for them to come up with their own meals at breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Chances are, they could even feel unmotivated to eat at these times. 

An assisted living facility will help to make sure that they’re well taken care of throughout their entire day. 

3. Escalating Needs

Family members are great for helping out the elderly, yet you also know when the needs begin to become too much. Are your elderly family member’s needs escalating beyond your physical capabilities? 

Many people will start to realize this when their family member has dementia. Their needs start escalating at a rapid pace. 

It could start with you helping them up the stairs. Next, you’re cooking them dinner, or you’re making sure they get out of bed in the morning. You need to decide when their needs are too much for you to handle. 

Chances are if it is causing you stress, it is more than you can handle. Make sure that you’re considering your own mental health when caring for your elderly family members. 

4. They Don’t Drive Anymore

If your elderly family member is still driving, make sure that they’re doing it safely.

Many elders get to a point where they choose not to drive on their own. If this is the case, you may want to help them consider public transportation. 

For a lot of seniors, none of these options are accessible as it might cause them too much stress or other factors. That is when assisted living is the best option. 

Assisted living can help seniors get from place to place in an accessible and easy way. Depending on their facility, they might ride with other seniors or alone. 

They will get a ride to the grocery store, doctor’s appointments, and other places that they need to go! This form of transportation is much more accessible because it is only for seniors. 

It can also help to give them some independence because they won’t need to rely on friends or family to take them from place to place. 

5. Not Keeping up With Household Chores

One of the benefits of an elderly family member still living on their own is that they need to make sure they’re staying on top of household chores. Yet, if you go to their house and repeatedly see a sink full of dishes, dirty laundry, or other clutter, this could be a sign that they can’t do it on their own. 

Sitting down and having a talk with them about their household chores is essential. Sometimes people have lazy days, yet it could be that they aren’t physically capable of getting everything done around the house. 

For some elderly family members, these chores can be too much physical labor for their bodies to handle. If it involved bending over or walking up and down the stairs, they might not be motivated to get things done. 

An assisted living facility can help them with any household chores that they would need to get done. That way, they wouldn’t need to worry about dishes building up or not having clean laundry. 

Talking About Assisted Living

Once you’ve decided to talk to your elderly family member about assisted living, make sure to do so in a positive way. After all, this could be a big life change for them, but it’s a good one too. 

If you’re able to use our reasons and talk with them about it, they might start to see your side of things. 

Are you looking for one of the best places to go for assisted living in Washington DC? We have you covered! You can even take a digital tour or schedule a walk-in one today and check out our facilities.

memory care Senior Living Tips & Advice

9 Impressive Benefits of Memory Care for Seniors

 

Are you the family member of a senior with Alzheimer’s or dementia near Washington, DC? 

You’ve probably tried managing on your own, but it’s increasingly hard to cope when you’ve got your own life to live too. Have you considered an assisted living community with memory care services?

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia, perhaps 60-70% of all cases. Dementia is a chronic and progressive syndrome that affects memory as well as many other cognitive functions. Though there’s no cure, the support of a skilled memory care community can improve the lives of sufferers and their families.

If you want to manage your loved one’s dementia better while optimizing their physical and mental health, it’s time to consider a memory care facility. You and your loved one need the long-term support of memory care experts to restore your quality of life.

We’re going to run through the major benefits of providing memory care to seniors who are challenged by the activities of daily living. Read on!

1. Specialized Training

An assisted living facility that provides memory care for seniors should benefit from highly-trained care providers. These caregivers will be educated and experienced in addressing the needs of a senior suffering from dementia.

Since dementia affects all areas of life, there’s a wealth of information to know and apply. This means that it’s hard for a family member to deliver the same level of skilled care.

Memory care professionals will be up-to-date with research by experts in the field and can address your emotional needs as well as your loved ones.

2. Individualized Plan

To maximize memory care benefits, techniques need to be tailored by one-on-one interactions. Dementia brings unique challenges to every person since our minds are so complex.

A memory care specialist will have extensive experience to draw on, so they can formulate a plan that has worked for other seniors with similar personal challenges. Caregivers can also draw on resources that won’t be available in a home environment to help a senior adapt to their changing needs.

3. Healthy Eating

Mealtimes can be a particular challenge for people with dementia. Too many choices overwhelm those who have declining cognitive functions so they may skip meals. They may also be finding it hard to use utensils at the table.

Senior housing with memory care addresses nutritional difficulties by providing food choices developed with dementia health in mind. A caregiver’s diet plan will tackle poor appetite, encourage hydration, and promote nutritional supplements between meals if necessary.

Many retirement communities have more than one dining room, so seniors who need an environment with fewer distractions can enjoy a simpler experience at their own pace.

4. Memory Programs

What is memory care? Aside from the intensive, specialized care provided by staff for activities of daily living, what about recreation? Seniors with memory issues need their brain stimulated by fun activities that will boost their cognitive functions.

Caregivers will usually formulate several timetables of activities that run simultaneously because not everyone enjoys the same hobbies. In an assisted living environment for memory care, arts and craft activities might involve creating a painting from memory. Games might focus on history and nostalgia.

Individual activities may also need to be personalized for seniors with different symptoms of dementia.

5. Night Safety

One of the great benefits of memory care facilities is that they are geared towards 24/7 safety. This means that they will have nighttime security in place that will be a great benefit for those who suffer sundown syndrome. Symptoms like agitation, confusion, and anxiety can ramp up at night, and this could be a serious problem for those suffering at home.

The availability of non-stop support is great peace of mind for family members who might otherwise be kept awake at night with worry. 

6. Maximize Independence

In addition to having secure entry and exit points, many memory care facilities will have interior courtyards or walled gardens. This is so that residents can safely enjoy time outside without the unpredictable hazards that they might otherwise encounter. 

The benefits of memory care facilities support independent living. The design of the building, floor plans, flow of rooms, and décor may all serve this goal. For memory care, rooms are often decorated in uncluttered ways to avoid confusion and sometimes have color-coded hallways to help residents find their way around more easily.

7. Stronger Families

It can be a huge relief of stress to see a loved one get the care they need. When a family is relieved of this worry, they can shed the role of primary caregiver and enjoy having a family-oriented dynamic again.

Family members can still be involved in a memory care plan, and they will be able to enjoy their visits more fully without the caregiver role.

8. Social Environment

Trying to help a senior with memory care needs at home can be a lonely experience for both of you. In an assisted living community, social interactions occur frequently, but with a private bedroom, a senior can feel at home with their familiar furniture and belongings. 

Staff and residents will provide the variety they need and are missing when isolated at home. In addition to social events organized at the residence, seasonal trips may be planned to suitable local attractions.

9. Local Connections

Lastly, a memory care facility will likely be connected to all the local amenities that a senior might need. This means that services like hairdressing may be available in-house or might visit the residence regularly. For those struggling to care for a senior at home, a trip to the hairdresser could be a stressful experience.

Our beautiful assisted living and memory care community has amazing amenities like a theater, exercise room, private gardens, and bistro with world-class dining.

Memory Care in Washington DC

We’ve shown that proper memory care is vital for seniors suffering from Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia. Don’t let the worsening cognitive abilities of a family member make daily life frustrating. 

If you’re the family member of a senior looking for an assisted living and memory care residence, we can help you. We are a retirement community in beautiful Washington, DC. We’ll provide a sense of community that’s unlike any you have experienced.

Contact us today to schedule a tour.

social interaction Senior Living Tips & Advice

The Center of Attention: Why Seniors Should Embrace Social…

As we grow older, there are certain changes that begin to take place in our lives. Our minds, bodies, and lifestyles all undergo significant transformations.

Aging is a natural part of life. But as we age, it is important that we recognize these attendant changes, realize what they might mean for our physical and mental health, and make necessary adjustments in order to keep ourselves healthy and happy.

When we talk about aging, something that is sometimes overlooked or left out of the conversation is the importance of maintaining an active social life.

Proper social interaction is not always seen as a priority for older people. But in fact, meaningful socialization is one of the cornerstones of a healthy lifestyle. This is true for people of all ages, but especially so for older adults.

Socially active older adults enjoy a surprising number of health benefits – both physical and mental – which those who are socially isolated do not.

Read on to explore the benefits of socialization for older adults and the dangers social isolation can cause. We’ll also discuss some fun and simple ways those later in life can work more social activity into their daily lives.

 

Better Overall Health

As we get older, our immune systems become weaker. This is why seemingly harmless diseases, such as the flu, can sometimes prove fatal in older adults.

But did you know that social activity can actually help to improve the immune system? It may be surprising, but regular and positive socialization can help to reduce stress and boost immunity. Something very important for older adults.

Improved Cognitive Function

Older adults are at a greater risk of developing diseases such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. The prospect of a loved one developing one of these heartbreaking diseases is often a source of great stress for carers and relatives.

Although there is no cure or definitive way of preventing these conditions, it is now known that social engagement can help to reduce the risk of an older person developing them.

Reduced Risk of Loneliness and Depression

Anybody can develop a depressive disorder, but in older adults, they can be particularly crippling. Figures from the CDC reveal that around 7 million adults over the age of 65 suffer from depression every year.

Forming stable and meaningful social connections can help to combat loneliness and depression, which is only one of the many reasons socialization for seniors is so important.

A Longer and Fuller Life

In addition to the many enriching effects regular social interaction can have in the lives of older adults, studies have shown it can also help to extend their life span.

Researchers have found that a lack of social engagement can be as damaging to a person’s life span, if not more so, than alcoholism, obesity, or smoking.

This means an active social life will generally lead to not only a happier, more fulfilled life, but a longer life as well.

Help in Healing

Death is an inevitable and inextricable part of life. Unfortunately, it can happen that as we get older, we find ourselves dealing with loss and grief more and more frequently. This can take its toll on older people and potentially lead to depression.

Bereavement and death are unavoidable. But social engagement and having a support network in place can be one way to lessen feelings of loneliness during this time, and help with the healing process necessary to recover from such tragic times.

Better Fitness Levels

Without proper social engagement, elderly people run the risk of damaging both their mental and physical health. Social isolation usually goes hand in hand with a more sedentary lifestyle and not getting out in the world enough.

On the contrary, an active social life naturally means getting out, moving around, seeing people, and doing things. It is so important for older adults to keep a good level of physical activity, even if this just means a regular walk. This can help to combat conditions such as sarcopenia, or muscular atrophy.

Paths to a More Active Social Life

Sometimes, older people can find it difficult to throw themselves into social activities, especially if this is not something they are used to doing. If you or a loved one is finding it challenging to stay socially active, below are some ideas for things you might try.

  • Join a local gym
  • Start a movie or book club with friends
  • Volunteer with a local community group
  • Take a course to learn a new skill
  • Continue your education
  • Connect with friends or family through the use of technology

At Maple Heights, staying connected and socially active couldn’t be easier. Our on-site amenities encourage socialization and help to create a tangible sense of community.

Our theater, private garden, exercise room, and restaurant all provide the perfect backdrop to embrace active aging and create long-lasting connections with like-minded people.

Be Sure They’re Getting Enough Social Interaction

Today there are countless wonderful opportunities for seniors to engage in social activities. Unfortunately, despite this, it is not always easy to ensure our loved ones are as socially active as they should be.

Time commitments, distance, or a lack of resources are only a few of the things that can prevent older people from being able to socialize.

At Maple Heights, we know the true value of social interaction. It’s something our staff and residents place great importance on.

Why not schedule a tour today and see for yourself the vibrant, close-knit community we’re proud to have fostered here.

how to get your elderly parents to eat Senior Living Tips & Advice

How to Get Your Elderly Parents to Eat When…

Taking care of your elderly parents can be tricky, but watching them starve themselves because they have no appetite can make things much worse. It can be hard to know what to do in these circumstances, leaving you worried about the health of your parents. 

How can you properly care for your parents and make sure that they are eating?

For people in this situation, don’t worry; there are ways that you can help coax them into eating. Here are some tips on how to get your elderly parents to eat, even when they don’t feel like eating.

Consider Why They Aren’t Eating

There are a few questions that you should ask yourself before trying to force your parents to eat. These questions could help to explain why they have no appetite or desire to eat in the first place.

1. Do you feel hungry?

As we age, our metabolism begins to slow down, but we also tend to become less mobile, which means we need fewer calories to keep ourselves going. This causes our appetites to diminish. Even if you haven’t eaten an appropriate amount of calories that day, you still might not feel hungry and end up malnourished.

2. Does it hurt to chew or swallow?

Issues with your teeth, jaw, or throat may begin to occur with age, which can make eating a painful experience. If your parent tells you that something hurts when they eat, then you may need to reconsider what they are eating. For example, if their jaw hurts when they eat, you may want to switch to softer foods that are easier to chew.

3. Has your ability to taste changed?

Our taste buds tend to get weaker over time which can make eating less enjoyable. When everything tastes the same, eating becomes something you have to do rather than something you WANT to do.  

How to Get Your Elderly Parents to Eat

Once you have an idea of why your parent isn’t eating as much as they should be, you can start working out how to get them back to healthy eating. Use these tips to encourage your parents to continue eating right.

Create a Meal and Snack Schedule

Giving your parents a set schedule for meal and snack time will help them realize that even if they aren’t hungry, they should still be eating something. You can set up physical reminders around their home, as well as digital reminders for the tech-savvy parents out there.

Use Small Portions with Healthy Foods

Rather than trying to force your parents to eat more food, you should try encouraging them to eat foods with higher nutritional value. Get meats with high protein content, fruits and vegetables that are filled with vitamins and nutrients, and other foods high in nutrients for meals and snacks.

Invest in Easy to Eat Snacks and Meals

If you’re concerned that your parents won’t want to put time and effort into preparing meals for themselves, then you’ll want to make sure they get plenty of food that is easy to cook and eat. This can include healthy microwave dinners, pre-made meals from the grocery store, or healthy snack packs. Many grocery stores have pre-prepared snacks that are high in proteins and vitamins while still being easy to eat, so consider buying some for snack time at home.

Finger-Foods Only

As your parents get older, you may want to ditch the forks and knives in favor of finger foods. Things like chicken nuggets, egg rolls, and sandwiches will be beneficial for you. This is because your elderly parents may struggle to use utensils properly due to weak joints or trembling hands, so avoiding the need for utensils will help them have an easier time eating.

Liquid Foods Are Your Friend

If your parents are having a hard time chewing or experience pain or discomfort when they eat, then you may want to switch over to liquid food alternatives. Shakes, juices, and even some soups will be perfect for your parents; all they’ll need is a straw, and they can still get all of the nutrients they need to stay healthy.

You should be careful with this method, of course. If your parent has a hard time swallowing, then you will need to try another alternative. If you’re in doubt, speak with your parent or your parent’s primary care provider for additional information.

Be Social at Mealtime

Sometimes your parent may not want to eat because they feel alone when they do. Eating is often considered a social activity, and if your parent has lost a spouse or someone they love, they may not want to eat by themselves.

You should try to encourage “meal dates” so that they can be social while they eat again. This will not only improve their mood and get them back out in the world, but it will get them eating healthily again.

Make Mealtime Enjoyable

Have your parents lost their ability to taste properly? If so, then it’s no wonder they don’t have an appetite. Eating things that taste like cardboard every day wouldn’t be a pleasant experience.

To combat this, make sure you add plenty of seasonings, spices, and herbs to the meals to give them a better experience! You may have to “overseason” the foods in order for them to taste anything, but it will help in the long run. Be sure to include their favorite foods if you can, and ask your parents what they like to eat.

Eat More, Worry Less

Now that you know how to get your elderly parents to eat, you can stop worrying so much about the health of your parents and get back to enjoying your time with them. Remember to pay attention to their wants and needs, and listen to their health providers if you’re ever in doubt. 

Are you concerned about the health of your aging parents and aren’t sure what to do?

We’re here to help. Contact us with any questions you might have, and continue reading our blog for more helpful tips.

Assisted Living Washington DC Senior Living Tips & Advice

Here’s Why You Should Choose Assisted Living in Washington…

Looking after elderly parents or loved ones can feel like an overwhelming task. This is especially hard if you are trying to raise a young family yourself and also working full time. 

This is why an assisted living facility could be the best option for you and your loved ones. However, it can be difficult to know which is the right assisted living facility for everyone involved.

In this article, we will explain the benefits of assisted living in Washington DC, and what exactly you should be prepared for. Read on to find out more.

What is an Assisted Living Facility? 

Assisted living facilities are places where senior people can live and lead independent lives. However, they still have access to support and help if they need it. They offer a range of support such as daily meals, transportation, help with medication, activities, and more.

Depending on the type of assisted living facility you choose they may also have additional amenities. They have things such as exercise rooms, theatres, cafes, private grounds, and entertainment. 

If your loved one enjoys a range of hobbies and an active lifestyle, it’s worth making sure that the assisted living facility has plenty of events. It should also offer communal areas and activities for them to enjoy.

Choosing a Place which is Flexible

Every assisted living facility will have its own standards of care and amenities. One thing you should always look for is flexibility. You want to know that your loved one in Washington is being taken care of and their own needs are being met.  

The sign of an excellent assisted living facility is one that is centered around the individual. They recognize that every senior or elderly resident will have a different set of requirements and care they need to function. 

The staff will need to be highly experienced and adaptable to any changes in your loved one’s condition and keep you aware of any new developments.

Facilities That Focus on Comfort 

If you are wanting your loved ones to make the move to assisted living, one of the main requirements should be comfort. In the Washington DC area, there are plenty of facilities, however, not all are predominately focused on comfortable living spaces.

You want your relative to enjoy their time in their new surroundings, with all the comforts and luxuries of home. They don’t want to feel that they are in a medical facility that is clinical and doesn’t have a personality.

Have a look at their individual self-contained spaces and see how the room feels. Do they have extra special touches that make the space feel homely? It’s important that your loved one has a space in which they feel welcome and at home.

This should also be the same for the communal spaces. The dining area and living spaces should feel cozy and somewhere your loved one would enjoy spending time in. 

Another thing to consider is whether they have private grounds or an outdoor area where they can spend time when the weather is nice and pleasant. It can be great also if they have outdoor seating where they can socialize too in the summer or springtime.

Having a Social Calendar 

One thing that can be great about assisted living facilities is that it’s a good way for your loved one to meet people of a similar age to them and have a built-in social network.

If they were previously living alone they might have felt lonely and even at risk for things such as depression. Social isolation can lead to severe health conditions and increase the likelihood of chronic illnesses

With assisted living, this will never be the case as they will be surrounded by seniors they can interact with on a daily basis, as well as trained staff who can organize events and special classes.

Your loved ones will be able to partake in activities and exercise that will help them with keeping active and entertained. An active and engaged brain has also been scientifically linked with delaying symptoms of dementia and Alzheimer’s.

If your loved one has been diagnosed with one of those diseases it can be reassuring to know they are in a place that is helpful in stimulating their brain and keeping them active. 

A Wide Range of Food Choices

If you are looking for an assisted living facility in the Washington area, you want your loved one to have access to great food!

The food at an assisted living facility should be delicious whilst also making sure that they are getting enough of their essential vitamins and nutrients. A facility that is concerned with the nutrition needs of their residents and also letting them enjoy a range of cuisines is an indication of an ideal place.

As your loved one gets older they will find that the things they used to do for themselves, such as cooking, aren’t as easy. They could even end up injuring or burning themselves in the process.

At an assisted living facility, they are still able to enjoy a wide range of food and home cooking, without the stress of having to buy the ingredients or cook it themselves.

Assisted Living, Washington DC: Where Can I Find Out More?

When it comes to the safety and care of your loved ones, choosing the right assisted living facility is paramount. If you are looking for assisted living in Washington DC you should also keep in mind that they should have plenty of activity and ways to socialize in their new surroundings. 

It might take a little while in terms of an adjustment period whilst your loved one settles in, but assisted living can be a great option for many families. 

If you would like to find out more, why not take an online tour and have a look for yourself?

dementia and depression Senior Living Tips & Advice

Depression and Dementia: Recognize the Signs

For a couple of years now, you’ve been visiting a loved one with dementia in the assisted living home. Most of the time you can get them to chat with you and despite everything, your time together is rather pleasant.

Lately, things have changed. They no longer seem to find as much joy in your talks. The reason might be because they’re depressed.

Dementia and depression oftentimes go hand and hand. The problem is diagnosing it. There are many similarities between the two conditions.

Part of getting your loved one the proper treatment is recognizing the signs of depression. Keep reading to learn more.

Difficulties with Diagnosis

Recognizing the signs of depression in your loved one with dementia can be difficult because a lot of the symptoms are the same. Your loved one may have issues articulating how they’re feeling.

That means it will be up to you to recognize any major changes in their behavior or mood. We will say that depression looks a bit different in patients with Alzheimer’s than it does for other people.

Most of the time it’s not as severe and the symptoms tend to come and go. They’re also less likely to speak about suicide or make the attempt.

Symptoms to Look Out For

Again, depression and dementia have a lot of the same symptoms so recognizing the signs isn’t easy. That doesn’t mean that it’s impossible. If they begin to show any of the following signs you should talk to a professional about getting an official diagnosis.

Loss of Interest

If your loved one stops showing an interest in participating in activities at the assisted living home this may be a sign that they are depressed. This is also a common side effect of dementia so you have to dig a little deeper to find out if the problem is depression.

Try to get your loved one to take part in an activity that they’ve always enjoyed. For example, if your dad likes football, flip the channel to the game when you visit. If he doesn’t seem to care much about it, he might be depressed.

Tearfulness

While tearfulness is a common occurrence with dementia patients, prolonged crying isn’t. If they cry for a good while during your visits with them, there’s a good chance that they are experiencing depression.

Changes in Sleeping Habits

You feel like every time you visit your loved one in the assisted living home they’re sleeping. You’ve heard from the staff that they don’t sleep much at night. Sometimes they sleep for a little while but wake up several times during the night.

This major fluctuation in their sleeping habits is a common sign that they are experiencing some level of depression.

Irritation

Many dementia patients who experience depression showcase sudden agitation toward their surroundings and other people. It doesn’t take much to set them off and put them in a horrible mood.

Physical Ailments

Physical ailments can be a tricky sign to notice. If they’re complaining about being in pain a lot it could be due to some kind of medical condition. It could also be a sign of depression.

Take your loved one to the doctor to get looked over. If the doctor tells you that there’s nothing wrong with them, there’s a good chance that depression is the cause.

Fatigue

Many people who have depression find it difficult to pull themselves out of bed. They just don’t have the energy to get up and go. If your loved one spends the vast majority of their time in bed, they may be depressed.

Getting an Official Diagnosis

For your loved one to be diagnosed with depression, they’ll need to be inspected by a medical professional. They’ll take a look at your loved one’s family history as well as interview people who know them and do a thorough mental and physical examination.

In order for them to be diagnosed with depression, they have to have been showing symptoms for two weeks or longer.

Treatment Methods

As far as treatment goes, there are several options available for your loved one. If they are in the early stages of dementia and are fully aware that they have depression, support groups are a great asset. Being able to sit in a room and talk to other people who are experiencing the same problems they are facing will make them feel less alone.

If they aren’t a fan of large groups, one on one counseling sessions can be just as helpful. Exercising releases feel-good endorphins that are known to reduce depression. So, if your loved one is able, they may benefit from developing a morning exercise routine.

Often times, an individual needs to take medication along with getting exercise and attending counseling sessions in order to recover. The doctor is likely to prescribe Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors rather than going with traditional antidepressant medications because they shouldn’t interfere with the other medications your loved one is currently taking.

Dementia and Depression Sometimes Go Hand and Hand

Dementia and depression seem to go hand and hand. Since the two share a lot of the same symptoms, getting a diagnosis can prove to be difficult. It’s up to you to notice the sudden mood and behavioral changes and get your loved one the help that they need to pull through.

One of the major causes of depression in senior dementia patients is loneliness. Being surrounded by others in an assisted living home can help. Go here to schedule a tour of our facility and find out if we’re the right fit for your loved one.

Senior Living Tips & Advice

7 Questions to Ask Before Choosing Assisted Living in…

assisted living in DC

It’s one of the most important decisions as your loved ones grow older—when to move into an assisted living facility.

They can help seniors stay active, meet new people, and receive all the care and assistance they need to stay healthy. If you’re living in the Washington, DC area and looking for a facility for your loved ones, you may be feeling a little overwhelmed with options.

How can you know which facility for assisted living in DC is the best? It helps to ask the right questions. Keep reading to learn seven key questions to ask a senior living facility.

1. When Looking for Assisted Living in DC, Ask Yourself what Your Needs Are

Before you start looking for assisted living services, you first need to ask some questions of yourself.

What are you looking for in terms of a facility? Think about what size or type of apartment you’re looking for, the level of care and support needed, and where you’d like to be in terms of location.

Once you’ve narrowed down a few things you must have, along with a few additional preferences, start looking for facilities who fit into those parameters.

2. What Level of Medical Care Does the Facility Offer?

When talking to staff at a potential facility, one of the most important considerations is regarding medical care. You’ll want to ask what level of medical care is provided.

For example, is there a doctor on-site? Are there nurses? If so, are they there all the time, or only during certain hours? You’ll also want to know if it’s possible to move apartments or upgrade the level of care, should your loved one’s health circumstances change.

Check also where the nearest hospital and pharmacy are located, ensuing your relatives have access to all the services they might need.

Getting daily assistance and care is a big reason why many move into assisted living homes, so make sure you fully understand all the medical options of a facility. If your loved ones need more care and medical support over time, you want to make sure they’re able to receive this too.

3. What Amenities and Activities Are Available for Residents?

One of the great things about living in DC is all of the history and fun of the city. There are plenty of activities for seniors to do in the DC area, so ask about which social programs and outings are available.

Most facilities will have a social calendar, offering a range of events (off and on-site) and activities for residents. Have a look and see if it looks like a varied, exciting program that your loved one would enjoy.

You’ll also want to know which amenities are available on site. There should be plenty for residents to do, either in the free time or as part of s structured group activity.

Amenities at Maple Heights include a bistro, exercise room, cinema, and private gardens.

4. Can I Tour the Facility?

You can learn a lot from reading online reviews of facilities, but one of the best ways to decide if it’s for you is by visiting in person.

When you’ve found a facility you’re considering, contact them to book an in-person or virtual tour. Facilities are usually glad to show you around and tell you more about the rooms and amenities.

Try to get a feel for the sizes of the apartments, the condition of the grounds and common rooms, and talk to current residents if you can.

5. Are Staff Trained in Alzheimer’s and Memory Loss?

If your loved one is suffering from a disease such as Alzheimer’s, you know the additional care that is required for them. As we age, memory loss and age-related dementia become more common, so even if your loved one isn’t experiencing them now, they may in the future.

Ask the facility about their experience when it comes to age-related memory loss. Are the staff trained specifically in how to help these residents?

You also may want to know if the facility has a separate wing or area for memory-loss patients. As they may require extra assistance and have different security needs, this is an important consideration for keeping your loved ones safe, now or in the future.

6. Are Meals Included?

When it comes to meals, everyone has different preferences. Are meals included in the monthly fee? Do residents have full cooking facilities within their apartments?

Many people of all ages love the joy of cooking, while others prefer the convenience of eating out. This may change over time, so always ask how meal times work at the facility.

It can also be helpful to know if the facility is able to cater to specific dietary requirements.

7. What Is the Monthly Cost?

Budget is an important consideration when it comes to moving into an assisted living facility. Don’t be afraid to be direct and ask the staff about the monthly cost.

You need to know what’s included within the cost, along with what extra costs you may need to budget for.

In addition to cost, it’s also important to check on availability. Some facilities may have a waiting list, which could be an issue if you’re looking for somewhere where your relative can move in right away.

Contact Maple Heights Senior Living to Learn More

Are you looking for the perfect location for assisted living in DC? If so, Maple Heights Senior Living may be the ideal fit for you and your family.

We are DC’s newest boutique senior living community, conveniently located just minutes from downtown DC. With a wide range of programs, amenities, and a range of floor plans, we have just what you’re looking for.

Contact us today to learn more or to schedule a tour, led by our caring and passionate staff. We look forward to hearing from you and helping your loved one feel right at home.

assisted living in Washington Senior Living Tips & Advice

5 Questions to Ask Before Choosing Assisted Living in…

Are you looking for an assisted living situation for your loved one? If so, you know how difficult it can be to find the right fit.

You want to make sure that your loved one is left in the best hands. It can give you peace of mind when you’re away, also lowering your guilt for not being able to be there for them around the clock.

Finding the right facility means talking to nurses, finding a high-quality assisted living staff, and so much more. See below for questions to ask to find assisted living in Washington for your loved one.

1. Are They Trained to Tend to My Loved One’s Needs?

The whole reason that you’re looking for an assisted living facility in the first place is that your loved one can no longer take care of themself. They need someone with the proper amount of training and time to tend to them.

Perhaps they struggle with memory loss diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. It might be that they can no longer walk or have severe diabetes. Whatever their struggles, you want to ensure the facility’s staff is properly trained to handle it.

Ask the facility about what kind of training their staff goes through in order to care for the patients. How often do they require them to retrain? Are the employees put through a background screening?

2. What Will It Cost?

Fortunately, in the District of Columbia, assisted living billing is covered by Medicaid which protects the wallets of the patient and their families. You no longer have to devise a combination of your loved one’s savings to pay for it.

However, you’ll still want to know what the cost is of the assisted living facility and whether or not it yields a high return on investment.

In a lot of ways, paying for assisted living is much like renting out an apartment. The annual fees tend to increase, there are other fees to consider, and it’s charged monthly.

But the cost can drastically change depending on your loved one’s situation. If they have a need for things such as memory care, then you can expect to pay more.

Make sure that you have a complete understanding of the billing process and the total charge. If the facility takes too long beating around the bush, then scratch them off your list and move on to the next one.

3. What Type of Apartments Do You Have?

Perhaps the most difficult part of this entire process is convincing your loved one that this transition is necessary. Odds are that they won’t agree to it right away.

However, the process can become much easier if you find a living situation that’s comparable to their current one. The setup of the apartment is always helpful, and having more options will make the process go much smoother.

Be sure to ask the facility what types of apartments that they have. Also, ask them their recommendations for your loved one’s situation.

In many cases, the apartment that you find will be a scaled-down version of their current home. They’ll have all the same luxuries in a smaller space, making it easier for them to move around.

4. What Amenities and Activities Do You Offer?

Of course, the setup of the apartment and the care they’ll receive aren’t the only two factors that should go into this decision. You also need to find a fair amount of activities and amenities that your loved one will thrive with.

If you don’t, then you’ll find yourself looking for a new assisted living facility as soon as their current lease is up.

Be sure to take the time and hear the facility explain what kind of meals they offer their residents for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The more meal options they offer, the better.

Next, you’ll want to see what amenities are offered to the residents such as a workout gym, pool, library, free space for social activities, etc. Also, make sure to inquire about the types of activities that they offer.

This could be things like puzzles, book clubs, yoga classes, workout classes, walking clubs, gardening, art, education courses, and so on. Factor in whether the activities they offer line up with your loved one’s personality and hobbies.

5. Do You Have Nurses Around the Clock?

Unfortunately, at their age, an emergency can happen with your elderly loved one at the drop of a hat. That might be during the day or night. Many places don’t have nurses on staff after business hours.

You’ll want to make sure that the facility you place your loved one in has nurses around the clock.

That way, if something were to happen, they would be able to administer medication, manage medical needs, perform tests, and tend to them until an ambulance arrived.

Also, for security reasons, you’ll want to learn more about what staff they have available during the night shift. Is there a security guard on staff? How many? Are any other staff members on the night shift? Have they undergone background screenings?

These questions can help you assess if the assisted living facility seems to go the extra mile with having staff readily available for their residents or not.

Find the Right Assisted Living in Washington D.C. For Your Loved One

Now that you’ve seen several questions to ask assisted living in Washington D.C., it’s time for you to find the right fit.

Be sure to read this article for more information on 5 important assisted living facts you might not have known.

For more inquiries, please start by taking a digital tour of our facility and we’ll be happy to assist you further!

what is a good breakfast for seniors Senior Living Tips & Advice

What Is a Good Breakfast for Seniors? 9 Meals…

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It gives us the energy and nutrients we need to have an energetic and productive morning and it helps to fuel us into the afternoon as well. It’s crucial that our breakfasts are both healthy and filling so that we can be the best that we can be all morning and all day.

This is true no matter what your age. Small children are taught about the importance of a complete breakfast at a very young age, and as we grow, we are encouraged to fuel our bodies with care each and every morning. 

Although older people know that a good breakfast is vital, they may find that they have moved away from the cultivation of this healthy habit as they aged, but staying healthy in one’s later years is more important than ever.

If there is an elderly person in your life that you love, you may be wondering, “what is a good breakfast for seniors?” Read on to learn about great first meals for older folks and for some great ideas they will almost definitely enjoy.

Eating Challenges for the Elderly

As people age, finding foods that are healthy and enjoyable may become more challenging. Older adults experience a number of problems that may not be felt in other stages of life.

Older adults may find that they no longer have the strong senses they once had, and this can result in decreased enjoyment of food and eating. Much of what we love about food is its taste and smell, and when these things seem to disappear, we may not be as excited about eating in general.

Many elderly people take medication and a lot of medication comes with side effects like reduced appetite and nausea. This, too, can make eating less enjoyable than it used to be in the past.

Poor dental health can also present food challenges for older individuals because they often find it is more difficult to chew some foods than it was in the past. Seniors often seek out softer, easier to consume foods for this reason.

Shopping and cooking are also challenges for elderly people, especially those who live alone. Seniors benefit from uncomplicated foods that are easy to purchase and prepare when it comes to buying food for all meals and times of the day.

Healthy Food Choices for Seniors

In addition to the above challenges, when it comes to determining what is a good breakfast for seniors one must also consider the specific nutrients that they most need.

Balanced meals for people of all ages include proper ratios of carbohydrate-rich foods, protein-heavy foods, and plenty of fruits and vegetables. 

However, in order to supply older individuals with the right nutrients to support their health, other micronutrients should be considered as well. Foods high in omega-3 fatty acids like fish and nuts can help to prevent inflammation, aid in vision health, and reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

Foods that are rich in calcium like dairy products and leafy green vegetables help to build and maintain healthy bones and keep blood pressure low. Foods rich in fiber like items with whole grains and nuts are also crucial because they aid in digestion and help to support gastrointestinal health.

What Is a Good Breakfast for Seniors?

With all of the above factors in mind, it may seem overwhelming to choose some easy-to-digest, easy-to-prepare, healthy, and filling foods for seniors at breakfast time, but it’s actually far easier than you might think. The following options meet all of the above criteria and are great additions to breakfasts for people of any age.

1. Avocado Toast

This simple meal is common with young people today, but it’s great for older folks as well. Avocados are full of healthy fats and multi-grain toast is rich with healthy fiber to help with digestion. It’s tasty and easy to eat, too.

2. Tofu Scramble

One cup of tofu contains twenty grams of protein and it is a great alternative to eggs which are also great but which contain a lot of cholesterol. Tofu can be scrambled on its own or cheese and vegetables can be added for an even more balanced meal.

3. Hummus and English Muffins

Creamy hummus is easy to eat and because it is made from chickpeas, it is another easy way to enjoy high amounts of protein. Spread it on whole-grain English muffins and top with tomatoes or spinach for a simple meal that includes everything one needs to start the day right.

4. Fruit Salad

A fruit salad is so simple but it is a wonderful way to start one’s morning with fresh, vibrant colors and flavors. Vitamin C helps to ward off illness and antioxidant-filled fruits like blueberries can even help to decrease the risk of cancer. 

5. French Toast

French toast is easy to make and to chew and when you add fruit on the side and syrup on top it’s hard for anyone to resist it. Instead of using an egg batter, try using soy milk for a healthier alternative. Use multi-grain bread to make it even healthier still.

6. Green Smoothies

There are so many options when it comes to smoothies. They are easy to create and easy to drink and the possibilities are endless. Green smoothies usually include kale or spinach which provide a high dose of Vitamin A.

7. Cauliflower Hash Browns

Potato hash browns are usually greasy and are often not too healthy as a result. Try using cauliflower instead for a tasty option that is easy to make and to consume.

8. Oatmeal with Fruit

Oatmeal is easy to prepare and is enjoyable at any time of the year. This tasty treat contains about four grams of fiber per cup which is wonderful for digestion. Add fruit or some maple syrup and this is a great meal not only for breakfast, but for lunch, dinner, and snacks as well.

9. Breakfast Potatoes

Potatoes are soft and are easy to prepare and consume. Although many potato breakfast offerings are not made in a healthy way, there are other options available to you. Slice up a potato and put it on a sheet pan and roast until ready. The finished product will provide fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

Have a Good Breakfast

All of the above are just starting points for healthy breakfasts for seniors. If you were wondering what is a good breakfast for seniors, these should give you some starting points and then you can develop more ideas from there.

Again, breakfast is the most important meal of the day no matter how young or old you are, and it’s a crucial piece of starting the day right. Plan with the right ideas in mind and the day that follows will be wonderful, indeed! 

At Maple Heights Living, we take pride in offering healthy, enjoyable, balanced meals to our seniors. The above suggestions are just a few examples of the types of food we serve. If you are interested in learning more about our facility, please give us a call today. 

 

choosing senior living Senior Living Tips & Advice

7 Questions to Ask When Choosing Senior Living in…

As of 2020, there are over 39.5 million people in the US aged over 65. A considerable percentage of this population lives in senior living facilities. 

For most people, the decision to relocate to a senior living community can be a challenging one. Ideally, people want to be close to their loved ones all their lives. In some cases, however, the best option is to move to an assisted living facility.

Choosing senior living communities that are ideal for your aging loved one is easier said than done. Remember that your loved one might end up living in the facility for more than a decade. You want to make sure that the facility you choose ensures a vibrant future for your loved one.

So how do you go about it? The best way is to ask the right questions during your visit to the various senior living facilities you visit so you decide on which community will best serve your loved one’s needs.

That’s precisely why we prepared this comprehensive guide. Here, you’ll find the ten most important questions you need to ask when choosing a senior living facility in Washington, DC.

Read on to learn more.

Choosing Senior Living Facilities

There are many senior living facilities in Washington, DC, but not all are right for your loved one. The following questions can help you narrow down on the best neighborhood for seniors. 

What Are Your Senior Living Accommodations Like?

This is the first question you need to ask during your hunt for a senior living facility. Enquire about the state of the living quarters. 

Is there enough privacy? Can you bring personal effects, and if so, which ones? Does the facility forbid certain items within the grounds?

Ask whether the community permits visitors, and when those visitors can come. In case your loved one needs medical assistance, what options for healthcare are provided? How frequently will your loved one be checked on?

Top assisted living facilities offer a wide variety of living arrangements in different layouts, sizes, and locations. You can find apartments as well as homes within the grounds. Consider where your loved one will be most content.

Ask about the utilities available in the community, including internet, cable TV, emergency call systems, and so on.

What Activities Do You Have?

One of the common reasons seniors relocate to assisted living facilities is that they feel increasingly isolated in their homes. If that’s the case with your loved one, you want to look for a facility where they’ll be able to socialize, learn, and play. 

Enquire what activities are available in the community. What are the eligibility requirements? Does the facility provide transportation to other senior centers in the area or other outside events?

How Do You Ensure the Safety of Residents?

Safety issues are prominent for older adults thinking of life in senior living communities. Ask what measures the community has put in place to ensure the safety of residents. You could pose such questions as:

  • Are there alert buttons for assistance in emergency situations?
  • Are there pull cords in the apartments?
  • Is bathing safety guaranteed? Are there easy-entry bathtubs and rails? Have non-slip surfaces been installed?
  • In case of a medical emergency, what does the facility do? Is staff available round the clock?
  • How does the community account for the presence of all residents?
  • What’s the emergency response plan? 
  • Does the facility have a generator for backup power?
  • Does the facility perform any background checks on staff?

If A Resident Has a Complaint, What Can They Do?

Even the best senior living facilities are not perfect. But you want a facility that is committed to continual improvement in its services. 

Does the facility have an open-door policy where residents, families, and staff can give feedback? How do they manage any concerns that are brought to them? Is there a policy on addressing complaints?

A great senior living facility will always promote transparency and facilitate good communication between residents, staff, and families.

Do You Offer Transportation?

You want your loved one to be still connected to the world outside the senior living facility. Ask what transportation options the community provides. A lot of facilities provide regular transportation within a certain radius.

Some facilities provide transportation for religious visits, doctor’s visits, and other necessities. Consider all places that your loved one may want to visit and inquire whether they’re part of the facility’s transportation route. Are there transportation services to restaurants, theaters, museums, and so on?

What Are the Qualifications of Your Staff?

The heart of an exceptional senior living community is an excellent staff. Ask what specific training and qualifications the staff at every level of the community has.

Do they have medical providers? If so, what is their training, and what experience do they have? Who will be caring for and interacting with your loved one daily?

Does the community offer regular meetings to strengthen the skills of their employees?

What Are the Meals Like?

As people age, they become more interested in healthy and delicious meals more than before. In the past, senior facility communities provided meals at set times. Residents ate the same food together.

Today, things have changed. Top communities provide all-day dining services at many venues, including cafes, pubs, and formal dining centers, where your loved one can enjoy gourmet eating. A community that provides many different meal options will often have something that your loved one can enjoy.

Proper nutrition is a crucial ingredient for good health. That means that the meals offered in a facility should be palatable and healthy. If your loved one has special dietary needs, such as low sodium or vegetarian, inquire how the facility will cater to their needs.

Asking the Right Questions Is the Key to Finding the Right Senior Living Facility

Knowing that you’ve found the ideal facility for your senior loved one can imbue both of you with a new sense of hope for the next stage of their life. The secret to choosing senior living that will meet the needs of your loved one lies in asking the right questions.

Are you interested in a senior living facility for your loved one? Contact us today to schedule a tour.

benefits of assisted living Senior Living Tips & Advice

5 Important Assisted Living Facts You Need to Know

Old age comes with its very own challenges, and it reaches a point where older adults cannot stay alone anymore. In America today, assisted living communities have become very common, and this is mainly because of the benefits of assisted living.

As adults age, they still have the desire to maintain their independence even though they still need help with several different day to day activities.

It is quite common for seniors to want to remain in their homes, but the reality is that adults above the age of 85 need help in handling activities of daily living (ADL).

What Is Assisted Living?

Not to be confused with nursing homes, assisted living is yet another type of living arrangement for seniors who value some independence while getting help at the same time. It is one of the most common types of care that is available to seniors.

Assisted living offers quite a good number of benefits to seniors. In these communities, senior adults get to live in their suites or maybe even with a companion and still get help in handling household chores like cooking, laundry, and cleaning.

These facilities are best for seniors who do not need round the clock nursing care.

What Does Assisted Living Provide?

One of the main reasons why seniors choose assisted living is having someone to help them with the ADLs. According to the National Center for Assisted Living (NCAL), seniors require assistants to help them as follows:

  • 62% of residents in assisted living communities need help with bathing
  • 39% need help with going to the toilet
  • 47% need help with dressing
  • 20% need help in eating
  • 30% need help with bed transfer

These facilities provide help with medication, housekeeping, transportation services, and more. Residents who move into these communities get help in almost everything.

Facts About Assisted Living That You Should Know

Even though this type of specialized care for senior citizens is common, several people do not quite get it yet. This has led to several misconceptions.

If you’re planning to take your loved one to an assisted living community or check yourself in one, here are some of the thing that you need to know:

1. Seniors Enjoy Their Independence

Assisted living communities encourage seniors to be independent. They only offer just the right amount of help a resident needs to help them remain safe.

The caregivers are always available to provide their services but will only do if requested, or when they see risk should a resident attempt to carry out the various activities by themselves.

There are no set schedules in such a community except the time that a resident needs to take their medication. Seniors are free to plan their day as they wish, and they do not lose their privacy.

2. There are No Doctors On-Site

These communities do not have a doctor on site. This is because they are not medical facilities. Some do have a registered nurse, but this is not common.

Should you need to see a doctor or have regular doctor’s appointments, the caregivers are always ready to help you with transportation.

If you need constant attention, you can consider going to a specialized care assisted living community that offers the kind of medical attention that you need.

3. They are All Unique

These communities provide different services and accommodate different budgets and tastes. Every assisted living communities offer different amenities, activities, living arrangements, and facilities. You can be sure to find one that fits your taste and budget.

Some communities focus more on providing specialized care to seniors with dementia or Alzheimer’s, while some cater to more active seniors who can take care of themselves with little help. It would help if you found a community that offers what you are looking for, can scale their services and abide by the states’ regulations.

These facilities also have different programs, and residents are often encouraged to participate in as many or fewer programs as they want.

4. Assisted Living Is Affordable

According to the Genworth Financial Survey, the cost of living in a nursing home in 2019 was $102,200, and the cost of moving into an assisted living community was $48,612. Though the monthly charges for an assisted living may fluctuate due to inflations, they base their monthly charges on the services or amenities utilized like cable, programs, and more.

Since it is just like living at home, you will pay for what you have used, and your rent will be determined by the type of housing that you choose.

Other services that you pay for can include lawn care, pet care, trash collection, and repairs and maintenance.

5. They Are the Future of Senior Care

The rising demand for diverse, active, and fun living arrangements for seniors has hugely impacted the growth of assisted living communities. Many people are learning these benefits of assisted care and are choosing it over any other alternative.

Assisted living communities are continually growing, and there are at least 28,900 assisted communities across the United States, according to NCAL.

When looking for an assisted living community, several insurance providers must cater to assisted living expenses. This means you should not rely on it before confirming with your provider. Though some communities accept Medicaid, they might only allocate a few beds to seniors using Medicaid, and this can limit you.

Consider These Benefits of Assisted Living

There are many benefits of assisted living that these communities offer residents. These communities give seniors a safe environment that will encourage them to be more active, comfortable, flexible, and happy.

Are you looking for the right assisted living community? Check us out.

We are one of the newest senior living communities that offer state of the art amenities, excellent housing facilities, and a vibrant social environment. Visit our website for more information, and contact us to schedule your tour.

senior living fund reviews Senior Living Tips & Advice

Senior Living Fund Reviews: The Best Senior Living Funds…

There are over 46 million Americans who comprise the country’s senior population.  Many are in good health and ready to enjoy their twilight years.

Yet, some need senior housing or assisted living facility. Because no one knows how long they will live, your senior housing investments need to start now.

Senior living fund reviews is a topic most seniors want to receive the latest and greatest information. 

Today’s 46 million senior citizen population is expected to double over the next 25 years. Making senior investing for a living of prime importance.

Senior Living Funding Sources

There are many senior living funding sources available to seniors. If you are a senior citizen or wish to help a senior citizen prepare for their post-retirement years, we are here to help.

We have listed below a cross-sectional list of senior housing investments which may of interest;

1. Reverse Mortgages and Home Equity Lines of Credit (HELOC)

Senior citizens who own their homes can use reverse mortgages or home equity lines of credit to help pay for assisted living needs.

But there are some very strict restrictions on owner-occupation and if a home equity line of credit associated costs. Good research on your options in this category before you make a decision is advisable.

2. Life Insurance Benefits

A senior who has invested in life insurance usually has several options. The below list represents a cross-sectional option range;

  • Viatical settlements – This settlement occurs when the insurance holder sells their life insurance policy to get cash. It meets immediate cash requirements but most financial advisors do not recommend it.
  • Loans based on insurance death benefits – The loans taken are based on your individual insurance policy’s cash value. What’s more, it must be repaid by you or your beneficiary or the death benefit is reduced.
  • Life insurance conversions – Life insurance conversions use the value of your policy and apply it to the cost of your senior housing funding needs. It usually maximizes the value of your policy.

3. More Senior Housing Investments

If you are financially secure and want a way to adequately cover your senior living funding needs long term care insurance is great.

If you still can still buy it, it is one of the smartest senior housing investment you can make. But if you currently need senior living housing, you no longer qualify to be a purchaser for this form of insurance.

Assisted living loans are sometimes called bridge loans.  These types of loans are some of the least favorite senior living funding sources.  It is also a loan some seniors use often.

It is a short-term, temporary loan. The problem with short-term, temporary loans is while flexible, there are problematic conditions which can occur. 

If your financial need exceeds the length of the bridge loan time (6-12 months), your interest rate and fees increase greatly.

4. Specific Senior Housing Investments

There are specific senior housing investments which you can research. You may decide some of them will meet the senior living funding you need for your future.

A cross-sectional list of some senior living fund reviews we found are;

  • LTC Properties (LTC).  LTC Properties, Inc. is a real estate investment trust with a debt to equity ratio of 46%. Since they are landlords but not care, providers, anything Medicare does rarely affect them. They also have over 200 investments throughout 28 states.  
  • Health Care REIT (HCN) changed its name to Welltower in 2015. Welltower has exceeded $30 billion of gross real estate investments since 2015. In 2018 Welltower acquired Quality Care Properties and HCR Manor Care for $4.4 billion. They have nowhere to go but up in value.
  • Aerie Pharma (AERI) – Aerie Pharma is a pharmaceutical company who provide products some seniors may use every day. AERI developed and brought to market two glaucoma drugs.
    • Both of these drugs Rocklatan® (netarsudil/latanoprost ophthalmic solution) 0.02%/0.005% and Rhopressa® (netarsudil ophthalmic solution) 0.02% are very successful.
    • Aerie Pharma is having monster growth and is worth researching.

Who Do I See and Where Do I Learn More?

Our senior assisted living center provides information and will direct you to people you can see to discuss senior housing investments.  

A senior housing investment may be needed by you or for your parents. We assist anyone who needs help with their investing in senior housing need.

However, there are other sources who can help you as well. Below is a list of cross-sectional people or places you can go to receive additional senior living funding assistance.

  • Public Benefits Counselors – Public Benefits Counselors are available through various non-profit organizations. Every state’s health and human service office has public benefits counselors. Local agencies like the Area Agencies on Aging (AAA) or Aging and Disability Resource Centers (ADRC) usually have benefits counselors on staff.
  • Geriatric Care Managers (GCM) – Geriatric Care Managers create and develop the family’s long-term care strategies for plans which will help them the most. Most geriatric care managers do not give, nor do they have financial expertise. Their jobs are to make sure the long-term care services you need fits your budget limits.
  • Eldercare Resource Planners (ERP) – Eldercare Resource Planners do usually have some financial background. 

You pay for ERP’s out of pocket, but they will help develop a realistic financial plan for your assisted living future plan needs. They can also create a financial plan for any current senior housing needs. 

Next Steps

Life moves faster than any of us ever expect. We always think we will have time to figure out what senior housing investments are best for us.

We also always think we will have time to read through senior living fund reviews so we will make the best decision for us or a loved one.

But if you have senior living funding or housing needs now, we can help provide helpful information. 

If you live or wish to reside in a Washington D.C. area senior housing area we provide virtual tours for you to select everything in advance.

If you or a family member need a beautiful senior living facility, we are the answer. We provide safe and beautiful living areas. We provide living areas where new friendships blossom. We provide living areas which become home.

Please call us now so we can bring the best in Washington D.C. senior housing to you. Your new home awaits!

different types of dementia Senior Living Tips & Advice

Yes, There’s More Than One: Understanding the Different Types…

Did you know that 50 million people around the world have dementia?

Generally speaking, dementia refers to the gradual decline and death of brain cells. But there are several forms of dementia that affect different areas of the brain.

Most of us are familiar with Alzheimer’s disease. But how is it different from other dementia types? What are the different types of dementia, anyway?

Read on to find out!

Alzheimer’s Disease

When people think of dementia, Alzheimer’s disease is usually the first thing to come to mind. Alzheimer’s is the most common type of dementia and currently affects 5.7 million Americans. This number is likely to grow at a staggering rate in the coming years as more people live into old age.

Like different types of dementia, Alzheimer’s involves the death of brain cells. But what exactly makes this occur in the first place?

There is still a lot we don’t understand about Alzheimer’s.

But we do know that Alzheimer’s causes a disruption between neurons early on. This causes the neurons to lose the ability to communicate with one another. As this occurs, the brain shrinks and the different stages of Alzheimer’s begin to unfold.

Those affected early on will begin to lose their short-term memory. They’ll forget where they put things, or names of people they’ve recently met.

In later stages, people with Alzheimer’s will forget important life events. Their personalities will change. In severe cases, many require round-the-clock care.

Lewy Body Dementia

What are some of the most common forms of dementia in addition to Alzheimer’s? Lewy body dementia is another common type that’s frequently misdiagnosed. It’s often referred to simply as Lewy bodies.

Lewy body dementia not only causes memory loss and progressive mental decline. It causes visual hallucinations, personality changes, and cognitive difficulties, as well. Many characterize Lewy bodies as embodying a blend of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.

Hallucinations are often one of the earliest symptoms of the disease. Those with the disease may hallucinate objects, people, sounds, or smells. Physical tremors, delayed movements, and muscle rigidity are also common.

Arising sleep problems are another hallmark sign of Lewy bodies. Those affected tend to act out their dreams. Depression, loss of motivation, and sporadic lapses of mental clarity are also common.

When protein deposits build up in neurons, it can cause brain plaque and tangles. This causes a loss of communication between neurons and eventual brain cell death.

In many ways, the causes and many of symptoms resemble Alzheimer’s. But the physical symptoms, like muscle stiffness, are more like Parkinson’s.

Vascular Dementia

With certain dementia types, a loss in neuron communication causes brain cell death. But this is not the only cause of dementia, nor are Alzheimer’s and Lewy bodies the only types.

When our brains don’t receive an adequate flow of oxygen from blood, it can cause brain cell death. After a stroke, it’s not uncommon for our brains to experience this. But a lack of blood flow to the brain can happen naturally as the result of age.

This can lead to one of the most common types of dementia, known as vascular dementia. The symptoms of vascular dementia hinge on the severity of the damage in the brain and its blood vessels.

After a stroke, visual impairment, confusion, and speech problems can arise. But drastic personality changes occur after a stroke often indicate vascular dementia.

Those affected will struggle to concentrate, adhere to plans, and understand situations. They may struggle to translate their thoughts into words. Sporadic laughing and crying spells are also not uncommon.

Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease

Whereas some forms of dementia progress slowly, others develop at a much faster rate. Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease is one of the rarest and most fatal types of dementia. Those diagnosed will usually pass away within a year.

What causes Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease? Unlike other dementia types, CJD is a type of prion disease. It alters the shape of the prion protein, which is present throughout our bodies. As this occurs, it causes a rapid decline in memory and cognition.

CJD also causes extreme personality change, mood swings, depression, and disorientation. It quickly leads to muscle degeneration, twitching, and stiffness, as well.

Frontotemporal Dementia

Dementia can affect the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain. This is otherwise known as frontotemporal dementia and it’s one of the more common types.

The frontal and temporal lobes of the brain correlate with many important functions. We process sensory input from our external environment through the temporal lobe. We process our emotional and cognitive thoughts through the frontal lobe.

When damage and brain cell death occur in these areas, it not only leads to forgetfulness. It can cause speech problems, compulsive behavior, and apathy.

Unlike some forms of dementia, FTD can affect younger adults. There have been cases of people having FTD in their 40’s and 50’s.

Other Forms of Dementia

Unfortunately, there are many different types of dementia beyond the ones we’ve discussed. If you suspect a loved one has dementia, it’s important to get a proper diagnosis. That way, they receive the best treatment possible for their individual case.

What are some other dementia types that may or may not be affecting someone you love?

Mixed dementia, which involves more than one type of dementia, is common. There are also brain disorders that can cause memory loss and other function loss.

For example, Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome is a brain disorder often associated with dementia. It’s a blend of Wernicke’s syndrome and Korsakoff syndrome.

Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome is not a form of dementia. But it does cause problems with memory and information processing nonetheless.

Need Help Understanding the Different Types of Dementia?

There is, in fact, more than one type of dementia. But understanding dementia goes well beyond knowing what different kinds there are.

Lifestyle, treatment, and dementia research are all important areas to stay aware of. Our senior living news can help you stay current on everything there is to know about the different types of dementia.

But what if you suspect that someone you love has a form of dementia? Or, if you a loved one has a diagnosis, you may not know what the next step is. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you.

aggressive behavior Senior Living Tips & Advice

Top 9 Tips for Dealing With Aggressive Behavior in…

Someone develops dementia every three seconds somewhere in the world. In 2017, there were approximately 50 million people living with this disease, and by 2030, this number expected to surpass 75 million.  

With so many people affected by this condition, it’s highly like you know someone with dementia. In fact, it may be a parent.

It’s estimated that 16.1 million people in the U.S. are currently providing care for someone with Alzheimer’s or dementia, and this number continues to grow. If you provide this care, for a parent, or another family member, you may be faced with a wide array of challenges.

A challenge of caring for individuals with dementia that doesn’t get much attention is aggressive behavior. Unfortunately, this is a serious issue for many individuals and caregivers.

Understanding Aggressive Behavior in Dementia Patients

Aggressive behavior in dementia patients may manifest in several ways. It can involve everything from physical shows of aggression to angry outbursts, and anything in between.

If you are providing care for someone who shows aggressive behavior, dealing with it may present a serious challenge. The good news is, there are a few tips that can help you get through these moments, and that may help you prevent them in the future.

Common Causes of Aggressive Behavior

Aggression in dementia patients can result from several factors. Poor communication, environmental factors, and physical discomfort are all important to consider.

If you are caring for a loved one who is aggressive, try to consider what may be contributing to this change in their behavior.

Physical Discomfort

In some situations, aggressive behavior can spur from some type of physical discomfort. However, for others, it could be an irritant in the atmosphere.

For example, is there excessive noise or stimulus in the room? Is the room crowded or stuffy? Is the individual tired, thirsty, or hungry? Are there medications causing side effects?

If you find something that’s possibly irritating in the atmosphere, remove the irritant from the space. See if that helps.

Mental/Emotional Factors

Aggression may also be caused by the individual’s emotions or mental state. For example, do they feel lost? Are they confused or frustrated?

There are some individuals who function better during certain times of the day. In many cases, mornings are best.

Think about the time of day when scheduling activities or making appointments. Select a time when you know they are most alert and will have the ability to process new information.

Poor Communication

Another common cause of aggressive behavior is if you don’t communicate well with the individual.

This can be caused by giving complex instructions or asking too many questions. The person may also be picking up on your irritation or stress.

Responding to Aggression in Dementia Patients

The way you respond to aggressive behaviors from a person with dementia can also impact the situation. Some tips to help you manage and diffuse the situation are found here.

1. Examine the Behavior Objectively

When your parent or other loved one begins to act aggressively, consider if their actions are really a problem. A problem behavior is one that can result in an adverse outcome for the individual, or someone else.

For example, ask yourself – can the action cause harm to the person or someone else?

While some behaviors may be uncomfortable to be around or perhaps disruptive or embarrassing, they may not truly be harmful. Try not to correct, intervene, or even unintentionally escalate a situation if it’s not necessary.

You have to know when to let some things go.

For example, if your father wants to wear four shirts and rummage through dresser drawers, let him. While you need to protect your loved one from harm, you also need to give them freedom.

2. Clear Communication Is Essential

The last thing you want to do is to make a person’s irritation or confusion worse. As a result, you need to ensure you are communicating with them in a clear, calm manner.

It’s important to communicate with simple, direct language. Break down a task into simple steps. Don’t overwhelm or expect too much from a loved one by giving complex requests, as this may lead to more irritation and aggression.

3. Attempt Redirection

If something is upsetting your loved one, try to get them to focus on something else. You can even pull out something they find comforting.

Another option is to ask the person for help with something else, such as folding laundry. You can also offer to go for a walk together.

Even if you just venture into the backyard, a change of scenery can make a huge difference.

4. Create a Routine

Having a consistent routine can help to remove some of the uncertainty in a person’s life. Having certain things to expect can help someone with dementia feel safe. They may also feel like they have a bit of control over their day to day life.

Creating a schedule doesn’t have to be difficult. Just figure out a specific time to have meals, taking medication, getting a shower, participating in fun activities, etc.

5. Try Your Best to Understand

Try to think about the specific emotion that has caused the aggression. Regardless of how far away from reality a person may be, try to figure out how they perceive the specific situation.

In many cases, individuals who suffer dementia become aggressive because they first become frustrated with their memory loss. To help minimize violence, take steps to minimize their confusion.

If you have noticed that your loved one’s aggression starts with confusion, take the time to ask them questions about how they are feeling. Really listen to what they say.

This is information that can be extremely useful in helping you figure out what they need to hear. When you know this, you can help them feel better about the situation.

6. Ensure Their Physical Needs Are Taken Care Of

In many cases, what may seem to be an issue is actually a symptom of a different, underlying problem. For example, if your loved one is experiencing some type of physical discomfort, it could turn into aggression.

In some cases, they may not be sure how to tell you about the discomfort. In other situations, they could be embarrassed. There are several illnesses, such as a urinary tract infection, that can lead to aggressive behaviors.

If you see that the usual things you do to calm your loved one aren’t working, then set up a doctor’s appointment. There may be an illness to blame for the aggression.

7. Let Your Loved One Have Space

This is a tip that’s important for both your loved one and yourself. In fact, in some cases, it may be necessary for your safety.

If your loved one starts to show signs of aggression, then let them have some space. This may also help to prevent violence or fits of rage.

Take a minute to regroup and then return to the situation. This allows you to get ahold of yourself, and give them a breather as well.

8. Remain Calm

If your loved one becomes aggressive, it may be a natural reaction to become upset, irritated, or stressed. However, it’s your job to remain calm.

The fact is, your loved one may pick up on these negative emotions, which can escalate their own feelings and frustrations. You need to remain positive and reassuring and always speak to them in a soft, slow tone.

9. Seek Outside Help and Advice

If you reach a point where the individual’s aggression, rage, or violence is too much to handle, then it may be a good idea to reach out for help. You can speak with the individual’s doctor or another professional in the field.

It may also be beneficial to talk to other caregivers who have faced similar situations. They may be able to provide you with additional insight and help for your situation.

Handling Aggressive Behavior: You Are in Control

If you are a caregiver for someone with dementia, there’s no question that your plate is full. If the individual begins to display aggressive behavior, then using the tips and information here may help you better handle the situation.

However, there is also help available. You are not alone. Millions of other people are in your shoes.

If you are unable to provide the care your loved one needs, then it may also be time to look into different living arrangements. At Maple Heights Senior Living, your loved one will be cared for by a professional staff who has prior experience with dementia patients.

For more information about the services available, or to schedule a tour, contact us today.

senior living fund Senior Living Tips & Advice

Financing Assisted Living: How to Plan Your Senior Living…

No one wants to admit that it might be time to get some help. But that time will come whether you’re ready for it or not.

You may notice that you are starting to slow down, or that cooking and cleaning are a little harder than the used to be – When that happens its time to start inking about your senior living fund.

No, we didn’t make that up it’s a real thing and we’re going to walk you through how to plan it.

It Can Cost More Than You Think

In a lot of cases, people think they know what to expect – then they are surprised when they find out just how much it costs.

The national average for the cost of an assisted living is $3,750 a month.

You may be able to look in neighboring cities to see if you can find something Less expensive. The cost of living varies from city to city. In some cases, you can negotiate the price or find move-in specials.

When you’re making your senior living fund you need to make sure that the place you are saving for has all the things you need. That’s because the more care you need the more you’re most likely going to have to pay.

Plan Your Senior Living Fund

When you start to plan your senior living fund it’s important that you know what your monthly budget is. Sit down and write out all of your expenses, then figure out how much you can begin to save.

You might need to cut back on some things to get your budget under control and it might be an uncomfortable thing to do. However, the longer you have to plan the less pressure there will be on you and your budget.

Some people even like to see an accountant to help get their plans started.

Look into Your Benefits

You might have benefits that will help you with your assisted living financing. In most cases, social security is what people use.

If you or your spouse is a veteran you might be able to use your veterans benefits to help fund your care.

If that’s not your case -you can always look into long-term care insurance options.

You just want to make sure you are aware of the premiums and how it will affect the policy you already have.

Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help

If you feel like you’re a little over your head with all of the planning – it’s okay to ask for help. You can asked friends or loved ones who have been through it before.

Like we mentioned before, you can also make an appointment to speak with an accountant. It’s better to ask for help now than to be in a position where you need assisted living but never started a senior living fund.

If you are interested in seeing an assisted living facility that as all of the amenities you could want – sign up for a tour.

senior exercises Senior Living Tips & Advice

Limber Up! Gentle Senior Exercises to Maintain Balance and…

Each year, one in four senior Americans falls.

This results to 800,000 hospitalizations and three million emergency room visits.

A fall doubles your risks of falling again and increases the chances of nursing serious injuries like hip fractures.

Fortunately, there’s something that you can do to improve your strength and balance – and that’s exercising.

Here are five easy senior exercises for better stability:

1. Heel Raises

This simple balance exercise for seniors not only boosts your stability, but also strengthens your knee joints and ankles.

To perform this exercise, stand upright with your feet hip-width apart. Place your hands on your waist, and lift both of your heels so that you balance on the balls of your feet.

Then, gently lower yourself back to the ground. Repeat this process at least 10 times.

If possible, use hand weights to increase intensity.

2. Single Limb Stances

For this workout, you’ll need to hold on to a chair and try to balance on one leg.

For best results, try maintaining your center of gravity over your ankles.

Balance on each foot for a few seconds, then begin supporting yourself with one hand – then a few fingers, and finally try to let go of the chair.

This exercise routine for seniors will give you the stability to dodge unnecessary falls.

3. Rock the Boat

This senior workout routine begins with placing your feet hip-width apart, ensuring your weight is evenly distributed across both legs.

Slowly transfer your weight to your right side by lifting your left foot off the ground. Hold that position for no longer than 30 seconds and then slowly lower your foot back to the ground, transferring your weight back on to both feet.

Repeat the process with your right foot.

If possible, do this exercise at least three times with each foot every day for improved strength and balance.

4. Walk the Line

Older adults are advised to walk daily to boost their health as they grow older.

For this exercise, place one foot directly in front of the other, so that the heel and toes nearly touch.

With your eyes fixed to a particular object directly in front of you, take about 15 to 20 steps.

This is a simple exercise to improve your balance and focus. It can also be a good physical activity for dementia patients.

5. Chair Squats

If you are looking for gentle lower body exercises for seniors, squatting to a chair is what you need.

Start by standing in front of a chair with your legs hip-width apart. Slightly raise your chest and begin lowering your hips to the seat while bending your knees.

This exercise will help you maintain the ability to get out of chairs independently, improving your core and functional balance.

Depending on your capability, try doing 5-15 chair squats per day.

Stay Strong with Senior Exercises

Your best bet at preventing falls is to maintain an active lifestyle with gentle senior exercises.

You also need to have a healthy diet to boost your gait.

It’s easier and fun to exercise in groups. This makes it important to find a home with a regular elderly exercise program as well as well-equipped workout rooms.

sugar and dementia Senior Living Tips & Advice

The Link Between Sugar and Dementia: How Does It…

We’re all tempted to eat to sugary foods, especially around the holiday season. The average American actually consumes 152 pounds of sugar in one year’s time– an immense amount!

We all know that sugar can have negative effects on our health. But it’s becoming clear that there are links between sugar consumption and disease that we were previously unaware of. The link between sugar and dementia is one of these discoveries.

Scientists have been more comfortable in recent years linking sugar consumption and the disease. They’ve now gone as far as referring to Alzheimer’s as stage 3 diabetes.

Read on to learn more about the connection between sugar intake and dementia.

What Dementia Research Tells Us

Scientists are working hard to understand dementia and it causes. Thanks to these many studies, the relationship between high blood sugar and dementia is becoming more and more apparent. Sugar can help lead to dementia development in a few different ways.

For one, diabetes weakens the blood vessels of the body. Weakened blood vessels greatly increase one’s chance for a stroke. And a stroke can quickly lead to the development of various forms of dementia.

When someone experiences a stroke, a lack of oxygen is sent to the brain. This can result in many brain cells dying, resulting in dementia.

The obesity caused by sugar consumption can also contribute to dementia development. In addition to high blood pressure, obesity can also lead to an overabundance of inflammatory proteins in the body.

Too many amyloid proteins in the brain can cause serious problems and cause mass cell death.

Protecting The Brain

Though the practice of lowering one’s blood pressure usually is associated with physical health, it’s also an essential step in protecting your brain.

Creating a diet that can control your blood sugar level is an imperative step for anyone who already has blood pressure issues. Even for those that don’t, cutting sugar out of one’s diet is a great proactive step in protecting your mental health.

Remember that sugary foods don’t only include things like cookies and cake. Carb-heavy diets that focus on bread and pasta can still turn to sugar in the body. Studies have found that individuals who eat mostly carbohydrates are much more likely to develop cognitive issues later in life.

Incorporating whole foods such as avocados, leafy greens, salmon, turmeric, nuts, and nutrient-heavy items can help give your body what it needs to run healthy and clean. Opting for fresh foods from local markets can also help to keep your body running healthy.

Regular exercise and proper relaxation techniques can also help both the mental and physical health of your body. A mix of all these practices is the best defense against the onset of diseases like diabetes and dementia.

The Link Between Sugar and Dementia

Our understanding of the connection between sugar and dementia is still developing. New research and new information are being provided each year.

But from the data available, it seems indisputable that high sugar consumption can lead to cognitive disorders like dementia later in life. Practicing healthy living and eating right can be the best way to stave off such diseases.

Check out our blog for more senior health advice, tips, and tricks.

alzheimer's behaviors Senior Living Tips & Advice

Understanding Alzheimer’s: The Different Stages and Alzheimer’s Behaviors

In the US alone, one out of every ten people who are over the age of 65 suffers from the devastating disease known as Alzheimer’s. This is a disease that does not discriminate. It can affect anyone and everyone, and it’s becoming increasingly prevalent as time goes on.

While Alzheimer’s end game for everyone is the loss of memory and the deterioration of soft tissues in the brain, there are a number of stages that people go through and each of these stages has specific behaviors associated with them.

But what are these stages and what specific Alzheimer’s behaviors should you look out for if you suspect someone you love is dealing with this disease? Read on to find out more.

Mild Alzheimer’s Disease

As Alzheimer’s disease progresses, it gets worse. These worsening signs and symptoms give way to different categories and stages. It can be hard to place someone in a specific stage, though, because they overlap sometimes.

During the early stage of Alzheimer’s, your loved one will be able to function on their own. For the most part, they can drive and work and continue on with life as they know it. However, they will notice that their memory is failing them.

Some of the Alzheimer’s behaviors to be on the lookout for during this stage are:

  • Forgetting names and places of everyday objects
  • Forgetting what they just read
  • Losing valuables
  • Difficulty organizing

However, it’s important to remember that not everyone with this disease will have these same symptoms.

Moderate Alzheimer’s Disease

The middle stage of Alzheimer’s disease can last for a long time. The difficulties your loved one experience are going to get worse and they’re going to have a hard time talking to you about these things. This is because their thoughts and feelings are getting harder to express.

Here’s a list of Alzheimer’s behaviors to watch for during the middle stage of Alzheimer’s:

  • Wandering or getting lost
  • Personality changes and compulsive behaviors
  • Difficulty controlling body functions
  • Forgetting life details
  • Forgetting the date, time, or location
  • Sleep changes

It’s normal for people in this stage of Alzheimer’s to be able to remember facts about themselves but performing daily tasks will become more difficult as time goes on.

Severe Alzheimer’s Disease

In the late and final stage of Alzheimer’s, individuals will slowly lose their ability to respond to the things around them. They likely won’t be able to have a conversation with anyone and, eventually, they won’t be able to control their movements.

There are no actual behaviors to watch out for in this stage because your loved one will need regular, round the clock care. They will lose their ability to walk, sit unassisted, and even swallow their own food.

It’s important in this stage of Alzheimer’s to take care to monitor your loved one’s health because they become susceptible to all sorts of infections and they won’t be able to communicate their pain to you.

Managing Alzheimer’s Behaviors With Senior Living

This information about Alzheimer’s behaviors is probably overwhelming. And, without a doubt, it’s heartbreaking.

But the good news is that you don’t have to handle it on your own. Senior living facilities are there to help you manage your loved one’s deteriorating health and improve their quality of life.

If you have concerns about a family member who is living with Alzheimer’s, schedule your tour at Maple Heights today.

senior citizen living Senior Living Tips & Advice

6 Important Amenities to Look for in Senior Citizen…

Chances are you have someone in your life who is getting older and is starting the process of finding senior citizen living arrangements.

These can range from independent living to assisted living to nursing homes. It all depends on the senior, the level of care they may require and what their families may want for them.

But what are some of the amenities that these living arrangements offer? Are there some that put them above all of the other nursing homes in your area? What kind of enrichment are you seeking for your family member?

Keep reading and find out what some of the top centers are providing for the people in their care.

1. Independence

For many seniors about to enter long-term care, the thought of losing all of their independence can be terrifying.

But many care facilities offer a wide range of living arrangements, catered especially to their clients. Those arrangements can offer a level of independence that is safe for the individual.

Seniors can choose the layouts of their new homes, decorate them as they wish and even cook meals in their new homes.

2. Social Hour

Humans are social beings. This is something that becomes even more important as we grow older.

When looking for a residence that your family member may thrive in, pay attention to the events the center holds. Letting residents communicate together and participate in group events will allow them to create a social life.

3. Gourmet Eating

Sustaining the body as well as the mind is essential. These days, senior centers are starting to offer gourmet-style food options that are delicious and nutritious.

Gone are frozen dinners and buffets.

Many new senior living care centers are even bringing in professional chefs to cook for their patients.

4. Individualized Care

When looking at care amenities, it may set family minds at ease when they find out that their senior will have a one-on-one, case-by-case, care schedule set up for them.

This amenity is an extremely important part of senior life. Not every one patient will have the same needs or the same lifestyle. Having a specific schedule and a dedicated team set up to look over them means they will be safe and cared for.

5. Let Seniors Enjoy Hobbies

For seniors, losing independence may be the hardest part of moving into a care facility.

Losing the ability to choose when and how they want to spend their time can be difficult. But allowing clients to take part in their favorite crafting activities or even gardening means their lives are fuller.

6. Keeping Active

Last but not least, it’s important that seniors are kept active. No matter the type of living arrangement they are committed to, they should have access to physical workout regimens meant to keep them fit.

Many long-term care facilities offer gyms or even pools that seniors can use. This allows them to rehabilitate when they need to and keep active.

Senior Citizen Living Made for You

Finding the right home for the senior in your life can be an overwhelming process.

With hundreds of options to choose from, there are so many variables to be mindful of. But with our help, we’ll be able to help you find the right senior citizen living arrangement for your loved one.

Our round-the-clock staff will keep your senior safe, rejuvenated and happy. Schedule a tour today to see why we offer the very best for the very special senior in your life.

effects of aging Senior Living Tips & Advice

How an Active Lifestyle Minimizes the Effects of Aging

Aging does not have to suffocate your quality of life. In fact, there are places in the world where the residents are known to live far longer than anywhere else. This article provides an overview of how an active, healthy lifestyle can minimize the effects of aging, and elongate your quality of life.

Defying the Effects of Aging

The negative effects of aging can be, in part, thwarted. In fact, researchers from National Geographic affirm that there are specific communities on the planet where the population has an abnormally high life quality and longevity expectancy. By studying the lifestyles of these communities, you can adapt your lifestyle to minimize the effects of aging.

Where on Earth has the Best Aging Populations?

National Geographic researchers set out to find, what they coined, as Blue Zones. Blue Zones, are the places on earth with more centenarians than anywhere else.

In Sardinia, in the Barbagia region, live the highest number of male centenarians anywhere on earth. Why do men live longer in this mountainous region of Italy?

Most men who live in these mountains are sheep herders. They spend the first half of the day walking up a slightly inclined hillside, and the second half of the day walking back down. They eat a Mediterranean diet, low in cholesterol and high in phytonutrients.

The Aegean island of Ikaria, Greece, is home to the lowest rate of mortality among middle-aged men. It is also the place on earth where dementia is least common.

The same applies, for the Nicoya Peninsula, in Costa Rica. In North America, Loma Linda, California is home to the Seventh Day Adventists, who appears to live up to ten years longer, on average, than the rest of the country.

And, in Okinawa, Japan, women that are over the age of 70 make up the highest life longevity rate anywhere on earth. So, what is the secret?

How to Age Well

If you want to live with more ability, joy, and longevity, follow these lifestyle tips from the Blue Zones Project.

Natural Movement

Moving naturally is the biggest aspect of keeping your body healthy into older age. Those that live the longest are people that spend large amounts of every day in low-impact natural movement.

Take a long walk up a small hill. The key is not to exhaust yourself, at all. Your body wants to move, so let it. Garden, hike, bike, or just simply walk. Adopt a life rhythm that incorporates movement as the hallmark.

Sense of Purpose

When you rise in the morning, what is your purpose? You can extend your lifespan an average of seven years if you find a reason and joy for waking. It can be to teach, to love, to laugh, to learn and, hopefully, all of these.

Take it Easy

Stress is the leading cause of chronic inflammation in old age. Inflammation accounts for the vast majority of diseases and physical ailments experienced in your elder years. The most effective way to mitigate stress is to meditate, pray, nap, or have an afternoon drink in the sunshine.

If you suffer from chronic inflammation, consider CBD treatments for decreasing stress and physical information.

Stop Eating Before Full

Eating until you’re stuffed is an unhealthy first-world luxury. If you continue to practice this habit into your elder age, you will cause serious detriment to your body. The rule is, eat until you are 80 percent full.

Eat Less Meat-A Lot Less

You should buff up how much plant matter you eat at each meal, and reduce the animal proteins. Instead of meat at every meal, switch to beans, like fava, soy, and lentil. Meat, like pork, chicken, or lamb, is a special treat that you should only eat four to five times a month.

Wine is Fine

The people on earth that live the longest share a commonality of one to two glasses of red wine per day. Studies from the National Institute of Health show that moderate wine drinkers outlive non-drinkers, on average. Do not drink to excess, though, or you undo your longevity work.

Community Belonging

An important aspect of aging well is to find your community. Whether it is a religious community, or otherwise, you need to explore the questions on your heart with a trusted and safe community. This element of your aging life can account for up to 14 years of added longevity.

Keep Family Close to Home

The most important thing in life is family. In old age, independence is contingent on purpose. Grandparents that live at home, with their grandchildren, live for years beyond those that do not.

The Blue Zone Project finds that family ties are one of the biggest factors in the extension of your life’s longevity.

Even if you are in assisted living, your home can be welcoming to family and friends.

Final Thoughts

If you liked this article on how to minimize the effects of aging, share it with someone you love on social media. And, for the most recent posts on aging well and assisted living, subscribe to the blog. Thanks for reading!

how to convince your parents Senior Living Tips & Advice

How to Convince Your Parents It’s Time for Assisted…

Moving a loved one into assisted living isn’t the easiest thing to do, but in reality, the decision should always come down to what’s best for them rather than what’s easy.

As such, one of the biggest services you can do for your parent(s) as a child is to help them realize when the time to consider assisted living has come.

If you’re not sure how to convince your parents of this, don’t worry.

Here are 3 tips to help you both get through this tough conversation together.

1. Don’t Tell, Ask

Most people who don’t want to admit they need assisted living are really trying to hide from the fact that they’re not as independent as they used to be. Help them embrace the independence they still have by approaching the conversation to move into assisted living as a choice, not a demand.

Ask them how they feel about this option. But, don’t just take no for an answer. If your parents are refusing to even think about this possibility, ask why.

Keep asking thoughtful, considerate questions until the conversation starts going somewhere. The more you can get your parents to open up about how they’re dealing with aging, the better you’ll be able to share the benefits of assisted living with them.

2. Focus on the Facts

The thing about bringing up the subject of assisted living, and aging in general, is that these conversations can get really emotional really fast. You have to focus on the facts even if you can tell your parents are getting worked up.

Of course, it’s good to share how much you love them and want the best for them. But when it comes to proving your point, facts will get you further than feelings.

Bring up what their doctors have been saying and changes in behavior that you’ve been seeing, too. Talk to your parents about the real dangers they can face if they choose to keep living alone rather than in assisted living.

3. Wait for a Learning Moment to Happen

What if your parent doesn’t want to listen to the points you’re trying to make? What if they’d rather brush off a recent fall they had as a “one-time” thing or if they fail to see the severity of it?

Put the conversation on pause and wait for a learning moment to present itself.

The next time you notice that your dad isn’t taking his medication or that your mom is struggling to get up the stairs or even off the couch, bring up assisted living again. It’s hard for them to ignore the facts when they’re right in front of them instead of a situation that happened in the past.

Here’s the Best Way to Learn How to Convince Your Parents to Move into Assisted Living:

The best way to learn how to convince your parents to move into assisted living is to keep trying. After all, it makes sense for them to give you some pushback the first few times you bring it up.

Keep in mind that this transition often makes people come to terms with how old they really are. It’s a release of their independence and it leaves the question about what they’re going to do about their home, too.

The best thing you can do is be there for your parents and guide them through the process. The rest will work itself out as the transition to assisted living begins and they adjust to their new community.

For details about assisted living in the Washington DC area, click here.

nutritional needs Senior Living Tips & Advice

6 Tips for Meeting the Special Nutritional Needs of…

Malnutrition costs the US $157 billion in related diseases each year. Seniors are the ones most susceptible to these complications.

As we grow older we tend to neglect our nutritional needs. This leads to heart, eye, brain, and muscle problems.

By maintaining a healthy diet, you can delay the onset of many diseases affecting seniors. Are you getting enough of these 6 nutrients needs?

1. Fiber

The average American doesn’t get enough fiber in their diet. If you aren’t eating whole foods, you aren’t getting enough either.

Fiber aids your digestive system, so your body moves food through the system absorbing nutrients. It also helps prevent heart disease.

What to Eat

Try to eat whole grains or beans. You can also get fiber from fruits and vegetables. Nuts and seeds also contain fiber, but these tend to be tougher to chew with extensive dental work.

2. Potassium

Potassium helps with cell function and bone strength. It also helps reduce kidney stones and blood pressure.

What to Eat

Eat more prunes and bananas to take in more potassium. You should get enough by eating fruits and vegetables at every meal.

3. B12

To create red blood cells and DNA your body needs B12. As the body ages, it becomes less able to absorb it from food.

What to Eat

To compensate for this, eat more fish, milk products, and poultry. You can also take a supplement if fish and dairy are not your taste.

4. Protein

Protein helps seniors maintain muscle strength. This is important to help maintain balance preventing falls and loss of mobility.

What to Eat

Eggs and chicken breasts are both rich in protein. Other good sources are cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, and broccoli.

5. Calcium

As we age, we tend to consume less calcium. This is a problem as calcium is the building block for strong bones. Without it, bones become brittle and more susceptible to fracture.

What to Eat

Try to have three servings of dairy a day to help increase calcium intake. If you don’t like dairy, kale or broccoli are also good sources.

6. Omega 3

These are good fats that help relieve the symptoms of arthritis and degenerative vision diseases. It has also shown to help seniors maintain mental sharpness.

What to Eat

You should eat fish at least twice a week. It is most effective to stick to fish high in omega 3 such as mackerel, tuna, and salmon.

Track Your Nutritional Needs

The nutritional needs for seniors are not that different from younger adults. The difference is the diseases you prevent by eating a balanced diet.

You need to eat a well-balanced diet to address brain, cardiovascular, and muscular health. Calcium and potassium keep your bones strong preventing breaks and fractures.

Omega 3 and B12 keep your red blood cells and heart healthy. Protein keeps your muscles strong which will help keep you flexible. Finally, you need fiber so your digestive tract works to absorb all the other nutrients.

For more information on nutrition for older adults be sure to read about the vitamins to help prevent Alzheimer’s.

difficulty remembering Senior Living Tips & Advice

Does Difficulty Remembering Always Signify Alzheimer’s Disease in Seniors?

If you’ve ever forgotten what day it is or struggled to find the right word, you know how frustrating difficulty remembering can be.

But is your memory loss, or that of a loved one, the result of aging, or is it an early sign of something more serious, like Alzheimer’s?

Keep reading to find out how to tell.

Does Difficulty Remembering Always Signify Alzheimer’s?

While Alzheimer’s memory loss is a well-known symptom of this condition, it is far from the only one. It is also far from the only explanation for memory loss in elders.

In fact, there are a number of explanations that can account for memory loss experienced by people of any age.

One explanation is simply age itself.

As we get older, changes occur in our brains. This can cause us to forget even the simplest of things, such as where we left our keys or what time we were supposed to meet someone.

It can also make it take longer for us to learn new things.

Other explanations for sudden or developing memory loss are emotional problems, mild cognitive issues, or trauma, such as from an injury like a fall.

There are other types of dementia besides Alzheimer’s that can cause memory loss as well.

How Can You Tell if Memory Loss in Elderly People is Due to Alzheimer’s?

While there may be many different explanations for why a person is experiencing memory loss, it can sometimes be tough to figure out which is to blame.

If the only symptom a person is experiencing is memory loss, there are a few ways to tell whether it could be the result of early-onset Alzheimer’s.

If the memory loss is random and sporadic, it is unlikely that the person suffers from Alzheimer’s. This form of dementia usually causes frequent memory loss.

Another sign that memory loss is due to something besides Alzheimer’s is if the person forgets something, but remembers it again soon after or even later that day. Often Alzheimer’s causes a person to forget something for an extended period of time, or even permanently.

If a person struggles to carry on a conversation because they can’t remember any of the words that they want to say, this can be a sign of dementia. But forgetting a word here and there is likely just a sign of aging.

What Are Other Early Signs of Alzheimer’s?

Besides short-term memory loss in elderly people, there are other signs that can signify Alzheimer’s.

One is extreme memory loss. This includes confusion about where a person is or how they got there, or difficulty performing normal, everyday tasks.

If a person becomes overly frustrated when they forget words or have trouble having conversations, it’s likely due to something besides aging.

Changes in vision, mood swings, and serious lapses in judgment can also be symptoms of dementia.

Are There Any Ways to Combat Memory Loss?

While Alzheimer’s requires medical attention and treatment, there are plenty of ways to combat difficulty remembering due to aging.

Engaging with others, playing games, learning new things, and other recreational activities can help keep your brain active and healthy, which can help reduce memory loss.

Check out our amenities to see how we help our residents combat memory loss and stay active by providing plenty of activities to enjoy each day.

being a caregiver Senior Living Tips & Advice

How to Deal with the Emotions of Being a…

Approximately 43.5 million Americans have become an unpaid caregiver to an adult or child over the past 12 months. Often, they become a caregiver gradually, as the person they care for begins to lose their faculties or function.

Becoming a caregiver can be a professional job, but many do it because of the devotion they have to their relatives. Being a caregiver is not something many people plan for, and the emotional aspect can be taxing.

Continue reading for some tips and tricks on how to deal with the emotions as a caregiver.

Dealing with Anger and Resentment

Anger and resentment are both common feelings amongst those who care for family members. You may feel angry at your loved one for forcing you to put your life on hold in order to care for their needs. You may then feel embarrassed or angry with yourself for having these emotions.

These emotions are very common for caregivers, and you should recognize that they are valid feelings. You can cope with them by going on a long walk, taking a timeout or venting to a family member, friend or spouse about some of the issues that come up when caregiving. It is normal to feel aggravated or even angry at the individual you are assisting at times.

How to Deal with Depression While Being a Caregiver

Many caregivers experience deep depression while they are caring for a loved one. This should be taken seriously. Those who are giving care to others may brush aside the feelings of depression and despair, convincing themselves its “not as bad” as what their loved one is experiencing.

You should not allow your depression to fester and ignore it. Instead, you should address it head-on. This may include signing up for counseling, exercise, or just scheduling in breaks every now and then so you can have some time on your own.

If the depression becomes too great, you and your family may consider putting the individual you are caring for in a nursing home or assisted living facility.

Join a Support Group for Other Caregivers

Being a caregiver can be incredibly isolating, especially if the person you are caring for requires monitoring 24 hours a day. This may mean that you are stuck in the house with them and not experiencing the same social life or doing the same things you did before you were caregiving.

Joining a caregiver support group can help you see that you’re not alone. You can express your frustrations, fears, and anxieties with others who are in your position. If you are alone all of the time, it can be easy to feel as though you are the only one with these emotions.

Meeting with other people can help crush the sense of isolation. Plus it can help you realize that what you’re experiencing is likely a normal side effect of being a full-time unpaid caregiver.

What Do I Do If the Guilt or Negative Emotions Are Too Much for Me?

You should never allow your negative emotions about being a caregiver to become so overwhelming that you feel you have no way out. If this is the case, you should seek help immediately. If you feel you may harm yourself or someone else, you should call your local emergency services.

For more information on senior living and caregiving for seniors, visit our blog.

dementia and sleep Senior Living Tips & Advice

Dementia and Sleep: How to Manage Alzheimer’s Sleep Problems

Did you know that a new person is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s every minute? Most of us are well aware of how devastating this disease is on someone’s mental facilities. A lesser known and discussed problem in dementia patients is sleep.

People suffering with Alzheimer’s also suffer from terrible sleep. If you or your loved one is looking for relief from this common side effect, read on. This article will give you 5 tips on how to manage dementia and sleep difficulties.

1. Spend More Time Outside

Sleeping problems are becoming more common in modern day. Many people work indoors and all of us get too much screen time with electronics.

These factors can wreak havoc on your sleeping schedule. By spending more time outside during the daytime, you can help your brain get back on its circadian rhythm. When we listen to our biological clock, that can alleviate dementia and sleeping issues.

If physical conditions prevent someone from getting outside, light therapy is another valuable option to consider. This treatment involves sitting by a special light that simulates natural daylight.

2. Increase Physical Activity

Exercise is one of the best things we can do to help our bodies and minds. This is especially true for people with Alzheimer’s.

If you want to know how to get dementia patients to sleep at night, make sure they’re getting enough physical activity during the day. Exercise helps to tire the body and ease restless minds at nights.

3. Fight Dementia and Sleep Problems with Bedroom Environment

A natural sleep aid for elderly with dementia is maintaining a healthy sleeping environment. Follow these guidelines to get some restful shut eye:

  • Use thick curtains to block any light from entering the room
  • Keep the room at a comfortably cool temperature
  • Dress in loose, minimal clothing so the skin can breathe
  • Consider playing white noise, nature sounds, or soft music for a relaxing atmosphere

4. Stay on Schedule

Maintaining a regular sleep schedule is critical for dementia patients. When people have schedules, their bodies and minds can start to wind down when they anticipate that bedtime is approaching. People will naturally get tired once a routine has been established for a few weeks.

5. Stop Eating or Drinking Before Bedtime

Dementia sleep deprivation is a serious condition. The last tip you should heed for better sleep is to stop eating or drinking at least an hour before bedtime, but preferably two hours.

Our bodies use a lot of energy to digest. When the body’s resources are used to break down food while we sleep, normal maintenance work gets neglected. If you eat before bed, it’s likely that you’ll wake up feeling exhausted.

Drinking can also interfere with the quality of your sleep. Abstaining from liquids a couple hours before bed will prevent any bathroom trips in the middle of the night.

Do You Need More Dementia Resources?

Battling dementia and sleep problems is exhausting for both the patient and the caretaker. If you live in the Washington DC area and you’re interested in exploring assisted living options, look no further than Maple Heights Senior Living. If you have any questions about our accommodations or services, please check out our amenities and other features.

sharp memory for seniors Senior Living Tips & Advice

5 Ways to Keep a Sharp Memory No Matter…

It is pointless to compare your memory to when you were younger.

This is not only because memories themselves are fickle and change as the years go on. Research has shown that it is also because the brain of a twenty-year-old is significantly different when compared to someone who is older.

Equally, if you forgot something as a young adult, you likely thought nothing of it, but once you’re older, it becomes a fear of Alzheimer’s. It’s this fear which makes us think something could be wrong or getting worse.

Instead, it is recommended you see how others are doing in your own age range. If you are no different then you are just aging naturally.

Of course, science has also found that the changes can be mediated. Keeping a sharp memory is a surprisingly easy thing to do so long as your willing to break out of some habits you may have stuck to over the years.

Our list below is just some of the things you can do keep your brain sharp.

5 Methods for Sharp Memory

1. Find a New Hobby or Interest

There is countless research that shows learning new skills and information is the best way for your mind to stay strong.

The process of discovering something new challenges your ways of thinking and forces you to solve problems that require intense focus. This means that your brain develops new pathways and stays strong.

Anything that will take all your concentration is a great way to start. You can start studying a subject that has always interested you at a school or local group, or take up something physical but still mentally challenging like woodworking.

2. Exercise

If you believe that being active is great for your body but not your mind then you’d be wrong.

Extensive studies have revealed there is a direct link between physical activity and the mind’s ability to stay sharp. And if you dread the idea of getting sweaty and hitting a gym don’t worry. The research has seen these benefits from something as simple as walking for just 30 minutes a day.

If you want to do something more engaging then dancing or gardening are other great options you can do.

All that matters is that you keep your body moving.

3. Eat More Healthy

Brain food really exists.

Just like your muscles need protein to stay strong, your brain actually benefits from getting the right nutrition as well.

Things like berries, fish, and nuts contain a wide variety of vitamins and healthy fats that keep your mind sharp and better at functioning.

For example, avocados are great at helping your body pump blood around the body, including the brain, thanks to the monounsaturated fats. They also help lower blood pressure meaning less pressure throughout your body and mind.

Best of all, dark chocolate is also on the list of good foods, (just make sure to eat it in moderation). Look into the different foods out there and start incorporating them into your lifestyle today.

4. Don’t Underestimate Yourself

If there is one phrase you must never say to yourself or believe it is this: “I am too old to do that.”

Research has shown repeatedly that how we view ourselves and think about the world drastically affects our physical and mental state.

Think of an older person you know who has always said something like they are “young at heart” and seems to always have energy. By saying this to themselves and everyone around them and believing it they really make it happen.

Your age does not define you.

It does not dictate who you are or what you are capable of. People with no experience have started successful businesses in their eighties, some have spent months or years training to run a marathon.

Whatever you want to do with your life, you can make it happen. It will not only lift your spirits but continue to keep your mind sharp, and your life full of new experiences.

5. Keep Meeting New People

While one of life’s greatest pleasures is sitting down with old friends and enjoying their company, it is still worth it to meet others.

It turns out that socializing is an essential part of keeping your memory sharp and active. This is because you are engaging in an activity which requires short-term memory such as new names, faces, hobbies, and interests.

A Busy Life Means a Sharp Mind

Often getting older means you have more time for yourself which gives you plenty of options to take on exciting new opportunities.

At Maple Heights, we offer a range of amenities that make socializing, staying active, and eating healthy easy and enjoyable.

Take a look at our floor plans and find yourself a new home that’s full of possibilities.

exercise and dementia Senior Living Tips & Advice

3 Things to Know About Exercise and Dementia

Did you know that the Alzheimer’s Association recommends participating in physical fitness activities?

Staying active will help will reduce the risks factors correlated with dementia.

There’s a definite link between exercise and dementia. Unfortunately, things aren’t always what they would seem to be at the first glance.

Read on to find out three big things you need to know when approaching the subject of physical activity and dementia.

1. Physical Activity Reduces the Risk of Dementia

If your loved one isn’t currently suffering from any form of dementia then an exercise regimen may be exactly what they need.

Studies show that those who are active are less likely to suffer from dementia. The Alzheimer’s Research & Prevention Foundation considers exercise to be one of their four pillars. These provide a stable ground to prevent the disease.

It’s associated with a 50% decrease in the risk for Alzheimer’s. It’s advised that exercise remains moderate for older patients to lower risk.

The incorporation of balance training is also important to reduce fall risk in elderly patients as well

2. Exercise and Dementia Isn’t a Clear Subject

The findings are much less conclusive for those who already have some form of dementia.

Dementia and exercise is still a somewhat controversial subject. Since socializing is so important in the continued treatment of dementia, it’s hard to draw conclusions.

Elderly patients are more likely to engage in group activities when exercising. This makes it important to find a home which offers exercise rooms and other amenities.

Exercise remains important throughout a person’s life. The exact exercises for dementia patients remain open to debate, however.

The majority of dementia exercise programs out there are a good idea to maintain fitness in the elderly. They just don’t combat dementia symptoms directly.

Other studies have found that mild aerobic exercise can have a protective effect.

3. Heavy Physical Exercise Can Have Adverse Effects

A recent study in the British Medical Journal showed an adverse effect in patients who are already suffering from dementia.

The difference between the control group and those who participated in the program was 1.4% at the end of the study.

That’s not a huge difference, but it may be enough that in the future the exercise recommendations for seniors with dementia will be lessened.

This depends on what future studies in the area find. The effects of physical activity and dementia are complicated and studies have only recently begun in the area.

Moving Forward

Exercise and dementia is a tricky subject. It may be time for your loved one to head to an assisted living facility, but it’s important to put them in one that understands.

If they’re approaching the twilight time of their life then it’s important to make sure that they’re in good hands and have the proper facilities available to them.

These include areas to exercise, to socialize, and the ability to exert control over their life. Assisted living can be very important to help achieve this.

If you’re looking for an assisted living in the Washington D.C. area then feel free to contact us and arrange a tour.

when is it time for assisted living Senior Living Tips & Advice

When Is It Time for Assisted Living? Look for…

One of the hardest decisions to make for yourself or a loved one is if it is time to make the switch to assisted living.

We often may try to keep our loved one in our own home or their home as long as possible, but generally, there is a time to accept that they need more help than you can give.

Senior living can also be a great initial option for older individuals, and it often gives them a healthy amount of freedom.

Moreover, it can give them more opportunities to socialize, engage in hobbies, and eat healthy meals.

Assisted living can, therefore, be one of the best options for both the family and the loved one in need.

Read on to learn the answer to the question of when is it time for assisted living with five key signs.

When is it Time for Assisted Living? Five Key Signs

The signs that it is time for assisted living can vary depending on the person and the situation, but overall here are a few things to keep an eye out for.

1. Escalating Care Needs

The first question you should ask when trying to determine if its time for assisted living is whether or not their care needs exceed your abilities.

If you feel like you are stretched too thin, and their health continues to decline, it is time to consider letting a professional in an assisted living facility.

2. Wandering Behavior

This sign is one of the most dangerous signs, and when assisted living is needed. Wandering behavior can be especially risky if you are not able to be with them at all times.

Moreover, this behavior can be immensely more problematic if the elderly person is struggling with dementia, Alzheimer’s disorder, or other neurological conditions.

3. Frequent Accidents

We want to believe that we can handle any situation our loved one gets themselves in, but this is often not the case for accidents.

If you find yourself constantly worrying about them falling, and they have a track record of doing so, it is time to consider that they would be safer in an assisted living facility.

4. Difficulty Engaging in Daily Activities

Whether your loved one is living by themselves or with you, try to take notice of their ability to engage in daily activities.

These could be as simple as grocery shopping, daily walking, or personal hygiene. If they struggle to do activities that are near essential to life, it may be time to seek help.

5. Caregiver Anxiety

Last but not least, ask yourself if you are suffering from high levels of caregiver anxiety.

This is often the clearest answer to the question of when is it time for assisted living.

If you are always anxious about your loved one, their health, and its impact on your family, assisted living may be the best option for them.

Know When it is time for Assisted Living

Overall, answering the question of when is it time for assisted living will greatly depend on you and your family’s situation.

However, there are certain things to look for that could interfere with your loved one’s ability to live at home.

To learn more about assisted living, check out our recent post on the advantages of assisted living.

independent living vs assisted living Senior Living Tips & Advice

Independent Living vs Assisted Living: What’s the Difference?

When you’re choosing between assisted living vs independent living, the needs of your loved one should be the guiding force of the decision.

But what if you don’t know all the differences between independent living and assisted living?

Don’t worry, we’re here to help.

Read on for the main differences you need to know. Help your senior make an informed decision that’s best for them.

Independent Living vs Assisted Living: What’s the Best Fit for You and Your Loved One

Caring for elderly people is an important responsibility which often includes choosing the right senior living community.

The choice between independent living or assisted living often comes down to how well the senior can perform daily activities on their own. Examples of daily activities are:

If your senior has difficulty with these or other daily activities, you may wish to consider an assisted living arrangement.

Assisted Living

When people refer to a “nursing home,” assisted living is usually what they’re talking about.

Assisted living homes are very helpful for seniors with trouble performing daily activities at home, either physically or cognitively.

Caring for a loved one as a full-time caregiver can become very costly. This is especially true if your senior is dealing with a chronic health condition, such as Alzheimer’s Disease or dementia.

Assisted living homes offer a way to live an independent lifestyle while receiving a helping hand where it’s needed.

Many assisted living homes offer medical support on some level.

Some offer personnel trained in basic life support and first aid.

On the other end of the spectrum, some homes provide licensed practical nurses, registered nurses, or even doctors to care for their residents.

Having medical oversight helps to ensure the safety and peace of mind for your loved one.

Even if there is no medical staff, your senior will benefit from receiving prepared meals and housekeeping. Typically, laundry service, utilities, and transportation are also included with the rent for the room.

Another benefit which older adults enjoy is the opportunity to engage in many social events.

Here are some events you may find at an assisted living home:

  • Cook-outs and barbecues
  • Outdoor concerts
  • Arts and crafts fairs
  • Picnics
  • Movie night
  • Mall trips
  • Fitness activities
  • Outdoor walks
  • Karaoke
  • Dancing
  • Learning classes and workshops
  • Bridge and other card games

Assisted living is ideal for seniors who wish to have their own living space but would like access to medical staff. They simply prefer a little help with basic daily activities, such as managing medications or assisting with bathing.

Independent Living

Many older adults function well on their own but wish to live in an independent living community.

These seniors like independent living facilities because they:

  • Don’t want to pay for their apartment or house
  • Don’t want the responsibility of maintaining their own house
  • Desire the safety and security of a community home
  • Want the convenient access to social activities, medical care, and entertainment.

Residents of independent living facilities are fairly active and enjoy the company of others their own age. They are very independent and need minimal assistance.

Most communities offer a full range of trips and activities to help their residents lead an active lifestyle.

Summary

If you’re considering assisted living vs independent living, remember to plan with the future in mind.

Your loved one may not need assistance right now, but their health care needs may call for a need for assistance in the future. If possible, try to get an assessment from your senior’s doctor to help plan ahead.

If you’d like to see a beautiful senior living community, schedule a tour at Maple Heights Senior Living.

benefits of assisted living Senior Living Tips & Advice

5 Benefits of Assisted Living Facilities

Often times, when seniors think of assisted living centers, they think of nursing homes; cramped, depressing, and dimly-lit facilities where they can’t get a moment’s peace. It’s important to note, however, that assisted living centers are not nursing homes. In fact, when you take all things into account, they are very, very different.

Not quite convinced? Allow us the opportunity to sway your opinion by reading about the following benefits of assisted living.

Plenty of Activities to Partake In

Do you typically struggle at finding things to do during the day? When you live in an assisted living center, you don’t have this problem. These centers schedule plenty of activities for their residents, ensuring that they’re living healthy, happy, and social lives.

These centers are also equipped with various forms of recreation. At an assisted living center, you’ll find everything from gyms, to cafes, to theaters, to outdoor recreation areas, and more.

Easy to Make Friends

One of the biggest problems that seniors encounter is making friends. Because they’re no longer working, and because they typically engage in fewer activities than they once did, they don’t encounter as many like-minded people as they once did.

Assisted living centers don’t ensure friendship for seniors, but they do make it a great deal easier. Because everyone at an assisted living center is around the same age, friendships are much easier to come by.

No Home Maintenance Required

One thing that assisted living centers do have in common with nursing homes is that they don’t require any home maintenance. When living in an assisted living center, you don’t have to make your bed, or sweep your floors, or wash your dishes, or do anything else that you would normally have to do in your own home.

If you typically struggle with doing these things, this can be a huge advantage. Instead of expending tons of energy on chores, you can use it on leisure.

Constantly Available Assistance

Another assisted living benefit is that assistance is constantly available. Should you ever become injured or unable to do something, there will be someone there to help you or to do it for you. It doesn’t matter what time of the day it is; 24/7 assistance is offered.

This is, quite simply, not true of living in your own home. While you may have someone with you during the day to help out with designated tasks, that person usually can not offer you assistance at all hours of the day.

No Need to Worry About Food

For some seniors, preparing meals can be a struggle. Because they can’t physically prepare meals themselves, they often instead order food which is entirely unhealthy.

Seniors who live in assisted living centers never run into this problem. Assisted living centers offer a variety of different meal plans, ensuring that you consistently receive a meal that you actually like on an everyday basis.

Reap the Benefits of Assisted Living

Are you interested in reaping the benefits of assisted living? Do you live in the Washington, DC area? If so, Maple Heights is the place for you.

A modern and luxurious assisted living center, we make your comfort and well-being our top priority.

Take a look at our floor plans now!

difference between dementia and alzheimer's Senior Living Tips & Advice

Understanding the Difference Between Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease

Many people today may assume one of two things about Alzheimer’s and dementia: they are one in the same disease or vastly different.

The reality? They are neither of these things.

Yes, these diseases have distinctly similar characteristics. But in order to manage these diseases, the inner workings must be understood.

So what’s the difference between dementia and Alzheimer’s? Find out more in this blog…

Defining the Difference between Dementia and Alzheimer’s

We understand, the statement above couldn’t be more conflicting. How can dementia and Alzheimer’s be neither the same nor completely different?

The key differentiating factor is that dementia is used as an umbrella term for symptoms caused by a number of different diseases.

Whereas Alzheimer’s is a specific disease all on its own. So are dementia and Alzheimer’s the same? The answer is both yes and no.

Essentially, Alzheimer’s is its own disease, whereas its symptoms are a condition of dementia. This means that most people who have Alzheimer’s will eventually develop symptoms of dementia.

Alzheimer’s: the Cause of Dementia

In 60 to 80% of people who suffer from Alzheimer’s, they will most likely develop dementia over time.

While there are several different causes of dementia, Alzheimer’s is the most common across the globe.

Throughout the United States today, over 5.3 million people suffer from Alzheimer’s.

So what are the key characteristics of Alzheimer’s?

  • Progressive memory loss – specifically short-term memory
  • Changes in cognitive skill i.e. focus, recognition, reasoning
  • Changes in behavior i.e. withdrawal, confusion, agitation, aggression

Currently, the exact cause of Alzheimer’s is largely unknown. But research has pinned down two contributing factors, including:

  1. The build-up of beta-amyloid proteins which form plaques between nerve cells in the brain.
  2. The build-up of tau proteins which form tangles within the cells of the brain.

Alzheimer’s is a degenerative disease which causes irreversible damage to the nerve cells in the brain- there is currently no cure.

Despite this, millions of Dollars is poured into research each year to better understand this disease.

Medications such as cholinesterase inhibitors and memantine are used to manage Alzheimer’s and manage its symptoms.

Dementia and its Many Forms

As mentioned, dementia is used as a term to describe a number of different diseases, all caused by the degeneration of nerves in the brain.

This is where the overlap between dementia and Alzheimer’s becomes prominent.

Two of the most common forms of dementia include vascular dementia (VaD) and Lewy Body dementia. Both of these are degenerative diseases which cause irreversible damage to the brain.

1. Vascular dementia

This form of dementia is caused by any condition which damages blood vessels in the brain.

These conditions may include a stroke, heart disease, diabetes, atherosclerosis, brain trauma (repeat concussion) and hypertension.

Treatment of these conditions cannot reverse the damage done to the brain but can help to prevent further damage.

Symptoms are very similar to those with Alzheimer’s, including cognitive impairment, disorientation, difficulty thinking, agitation, and aggression.

2. Lewy Bodies Dementia

Also known as DLB, this form of dementia accounts for nearly 10% of all dementias.

This form of dementia is caused by an accumulation of abnormal protein deposits in the brain, known as Lewy Bodies.

DLB is most commonly mistaken as Alzheimer’s due to the distinct overlap of symptoms.

However, distinguishing symptoms of DLB include visual hallucinations, tremors, rigidity, loss of autonomic regulation and sleep disorders.

Just some of the rarer forms of dementia include:

  • Frontotemporal dementia
  • Huntington’s Disease
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease

All of the above are slowly degenerative with their own set of distinct symptoms, yet a number of which also overlap between each disease.

Looking for Long-Term Memory Care?

At Maple Heights Senior Living we specialize in assisted living and care for those with cognitive disorders.

Whether you’re looking to learn the difference between dementia and Alzheimer’s or how to offer the best care for a loved one, our experts are here to help.

Take a tour of our facility and get to know us better!

what is early onset alzheimer's Senior Living Tips & Advice

What is Early Onset Alzheimer’s and How Young Can…

In Still Alice, Julianne Moore played the role of Dr. Alice Howland. She was a linguistics professor, diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s.

In the movie, Howland got diagnosed shortly after celebrating her 50th birthday. You could say that’s too young. But there are people in their 30s and 40s who exhibit early onset Alzheimer’s symptoms.

So what is early onset Alzheimer’s? Here’s an overview of the condition and the kind of prognosis patients can expect.

What Is Early Onset Alzheimer’s?

Early onset Alzheimer’s is a rare form of Alzheimer’s. As mentioned earlier, it can strike people in their 30s and 40s.

The sad thing is experts still don’t have the full picture why younger people get early onset AD. But they know that family history is a factor.

There are three genes linked to early onset Alzheimer’s – the APP, PSEN 1 and PSEN 2. Mutation in any of these genes can predispose you to develop Alzheimer’s before you turn 65.

If you want to know if you’re at risk for developing early onset Alzheimer’s, you can go for genetic testing. Should you test positive, you can prepare for it and you could also take part in a research study.

Helping researchers learn more about this condition can help develop new treatments. And this could help other patients who suffer from the condition.

Early Alzheimer’s Symptoms

Let’s say you haven’t gone for genetic testing. But you suspect you or a loved one could have early Alzheimer’s.

There are symptoms you can watch out for. Memory loss is the number one sign. If a person’s more forgetful than normal and needs frequent reminders, it’s time to see a doctor.

Other signs include difficulty planning and solving problems. Losing track of time and places and repetitive conversations are also common signs. Even if you don’t experience all these symptoms, it’s still best to go for a consultation right away.

A cure may not be present at the moment. But getting an early diagnosis can be a big help. Knowing early could influence how you decide important financial and legal matters.

Early Onset Alzheimer’s Life Expectancy

Life expectancy for those with early onset Alzheimer’s is 4 to 6 years after the date of diagnosis. Leading causes of death include pneumonia and malignancy. Heart disease and a general worsening of the disease are also causes of mortality.

Some patients also succumb to frustration and depression after the diagnosis. And this could speed up the disease’s progression. It is important for everyone involved to plan ahead and consider outside help.

Early Onset Alzheimer’s: You Don’t Need to Do it Alone

Now that you know what is early onset Alzheimer’s, you understand how it can affect people of your age. If you or a loved one has early onset Alzheimer’s, don’t lose hope.

There are assisted living facilities that can help. They specialize in caring for those who have Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. They can provide resources and activities in ways that family care can’t help.

If you need more information, don’t hesitate to contact us.

memory care activities Senior Living Tips & Advice

3 Memory Care Activities for Patients with Alzheimer’s

If you have a loved one who suffers from Alzheimer’s, you’re not alone. In fact, someone develops this disease every sixty-five seconds in the United States.

Although it can be stressful and scary to watch an important person in your life suffer, there are many ways that you can help. In fact, by completing simple memory care activities with them, you can help your loved one in a plethora of ways.

Want to know more? Keep reading for tons of great information and ideas to get you started.

Why Memory Care Activities Matter

After their initial diagnosis, it’s imperative to keep Alzheimer’s patients busy with stimulating tasks. These activities will give them pleasure, help them to recover memories, and bolster emotional connections with others. Alzheimer’s activities can also ease anxiety, irritability, and depression.

Now, let’s dive into the top three activities that will provide the most benefits to your loved one.

1. Music

Whether they’re singing songs or simply listening, music is useful for people with Alzheimer’s in multiple ways. Research shows that music has both behavioral and emotional benefits for anyone suffering from this disease.

For people with Alzheimer’s, interacting with music can reduce stress, lessen anxiety or depression, and resolve general agitation. This, in part, is thanks to stored musical memories that exist in a part of the brain which is not damaged by Alzheimer’s.

It’s also a very simple way to help. So if you want quick and easy activities for Alzheimer patients, music is the best option for you.

2. Cleaning

If you’re looking for activities for dementia patients that serve multiple purposes, cleaning is an excellent choice. Even the simplest tasks like wiping surfaces, folding linens, and sweeping give the Alzheimer’s or dementia patient many benefits.

Firstly, completing these simple chores will give the person a sense of accomplishment. And secondly, these tasks will also get the patient up and moving around, which is important for their mental and physical well-being.

You can even use cleaning as a way to create fun games for Alzheimer’s patients. Get creative, and be sure to congratulate them after on a job well done!

3. Create a Time Machine

One of the best brain-exercising activities for Alzheimer’s patients is to surround them with memories of their past. This could be old home videos, the music they used to love, family photo albums, and the like.

New research even suggests that those who suffer from Alzheimer’s don’t lose memories, they just become more difficult to access. Showing patients items from their past may help them to regain clarity. Especially if they are in assisted living care, bringing slices of home to them is deeply beneficial.

Don’t Lose Hope

As you can see, even the simplest memory care activities can make a huge difference to your loved one’s health and well-being. All it takes is a little time and effort.

Just remember to stay patient during these tasks, and to have fun. After all, you should enjoy the stress-relieving benefits of these activities as well!

If you want more advice about helping people with memory issues, or for the inside scoop on senior living communities, check out our blog. We have some helpful information for you.

vitamins for Alzheimer's prevention Senior Living Tips & Advice

5 Powerful Vitamins for Alzheimer’s Prevention

Are you worried that you or someone you love may be developing memory problems or early onset of Alzheimer’s?

You’re not alone.

In fact, over 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s Disease.

It doesn’t hurt to start adding important vitamins for Alzheimer’s prevention into your diet. Even if you already have the disease, you may be able to slow the process with certain dietary changes.

Check out five powerful vitamins for Alzheimer’s Prevention.

Should You Take Vitamins for Alzheimer’s Prevention?

If you have a loved one who is struggling with memory loss and you are worried about the development of Alzheimer’s Disease, you may be wondering how to prevent Alzheimer’s. You may also wonder, “is Alzheimer’s hereditary?” If you have a parent or sibling with the disease, you are more likely to develop it as well.

While there is no cure yet for this disease, you may be able to prevent or slow the onset of it.

If you want to know how to fight dementia and Alzheimer’s, you may want to consider adding some powerful vitamins to a healthy diet along with engaging activities to exercise the mind.

1) Vitamin K

Vitamin K has been known as an anti-aging vitamin. Vitamin K regulates calcium in the brain. If you want help with how to prevent Alzheimer’s Disease, consider adding this vitamin.

Some foods that contain Vitamin K are:

  • broccoli
  • spinach
  • brussel sprouts
  • turnip greens

It’s recommended that adults have 90 mcg of Vitamin K daily.

2) Omega 3 Fats

Omega 3 fats are a “good” fat that can help lower your risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s. Your body doesn’t make these so you have to supplement with food or vitamins. Fish, leafy greens, and flaxseed oil are great sources of omega 3.

3) Vitamin D

There is a strong link between vitamin D deficiency and dementia. Low levels of vitamin D can slow down cognitive ability and memory.

Sunshine is the best source of this vitamin, but you can also get it from certain foods like vitamin D fortified orange juices and milks, as well as salmon, tuna, and sardines.

4) Vitamin E

Adding Vitamin E may help with Alzheimer’s Disease treatment. When given to test individuals in large doses, this super vitamin led to a six-month delay in Alzheimer’s progression as opposed to those who received a typical daily dosage.

5) Folic Acid

You’ve probably heard that folic acid is important for pregnant women to take for their baby’s brain development. Adults also need folic acid.

Lower levels of folic acid in the elderly can equal an increased risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease. Broccoli, spinach, and lentils are good sources of folic acid.

Get Assistance for Your Loved Ones

It’s difficult to see your loved ones struggle with memory loss. Adding vitamins for Alzheimer’s prevention can be very beneficial, but you may need more help and guidance.

If you want to see if assisted living is a good fit for you or your loved one, contact us today for a tour. We are happy to assist you in any way.

Living with Alzheimer's Senior Living Tips & Advice

Living With Alzheimer’s? How Assisted Living Can Help

If you or someone you love is living with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia you’re not alone. Between 4-5 million Americans are directly affected by a similar diagnosis in their family.

It can be frightening and overwhelming. There are ways to make life more comfortable and easier to cope with.

Many fear the prospect of needing outside help. They vow never to resort to a nursing home facility. It’s difficult to manage the responsibility alone.

Assisted living facilities can be a solution. It solves any safety and care concerns and provides a higher quality of life through the staff and resources available.

It Takes a Village

You are only one person and though you may have family member and friends to offer support it’s impossible for you to do everything a fully staffed facility can provide.

When a loved one is living with Alzheimer’s the rest of the world doesn’t stop. There are still bills to pay, obligations to be met and responsibilities to fulfill. This can be impossible when all your time, energy and resources are going to keeping your loved one safe.

When you’re not there, you worry that they may need something or be at risk of injury or harm. Every area of your life is affected and your health can start to suffer as well. You can’t do your loved one, the rest of your family, your career or yourself any good if you’re ill from exhaustion.

An assisted living facility provides a safe environment with resources to improve the quality of life for the resident and their families.

Quality Not Quantity of Time

Many worry that asking professionals to care for a loved one is neglectful or in essence, robbing the family of time together. An assisted living facility can actually provide the gift of quality time rather than quantity.

When loved ones are no longer solely responsible for the care and well-being of their family member it is easier to enjoy and fully appreciate the time they do spend together.

Caregiver burn out can make loving families feel resentment, anger, depression, anxiety and other difficult emotions. Feelings that creep into the relationship only because of pure exhaustion and hopelessness in an overwhelmingly difficult situation.

Greater Resources and Skills

Assisted living facilities can provide resources and activities that improve the residents quality of life in ways that family care can’t.

Many individuals living with Alzheimer’s at home become shut-ins. They suffer from loneliness, depression and deteriorating health because of their isolation.

Assisted living facilities offer residents forms of socialization through activities designed specifically for those with dementia.

Safety and proper nutrition are easier to ensure in a facility with full staff and medical training.

Peace of Mind

Life is stressful enough without the world resting solely on your shoulders. This is especially true when facing a future of living with Alzheimer’s. You don’t need to do it alone and can gain some peace of mind and support through assisted living facilities that specialize in caring for those in your situation.

Contact us today for more information about how we can improve your quality of life and give you a lasting peace of mind.

signs of loneliness Senior Living Tips & Advice

5 Signs of Loneliness in Seniors and How Assisted…

In a world where everyone is so connected, research has shown that society is the loneliest it’s ever been.

More so than any other age group in society, the elderly tend to suffer from loneliness the most. Whether it’s due to health limitations, a loss of family and friends or long-term disease, there are definite ways to combat loneliness in seniors.

But first, it’s important to spot the signs of loneliness in the elderly. To find out more, we outline it all in this blog…’

5 Signs of Loneliness in the Elderly

If your loved one is displaying any of these simple signs of loneliness, perhaps it’s time to consider assisted living?

1. An Interrupted or Restless Sleep Pattern

If a parent or elderly family member is consistently experiencing a disrupted or broken sleeping pattern, this may be cause for concern. According to studies, interrupted or restless sleep is a result of how a person’s time is being spent throughout the day.

If a senior is lonely and has too much time to themselves, their sleep pattern is likely to be disrupted as their days are perhaps not active enough. Find out from your loved one how they are spending their time during the day and this may offer insight into their levels of loneliness.

2. Unusual Spending Habits

If an elderly loved one has suddenly changed or increased their spending habits, this is also a red flag to look out for. Increasing their time at shopping malls, spending money on unnecessary items is a sure-fire sign they may be bored and lonely.

This is simply a way for a lonely senior to try and compensate for a lack of meaningful social interaction they may be craving.

3. A Loss of Appetite and Change in Eating Habits

A loss of appetite is closely linked with mental disorders such as depression, which can ultimately be brought on by loneliness. If your elderly parents or a loved one is eating less, neglecting their diet or refusing to eat at all, severe loneliness could be at play.

4. Inconsistent Communication

If your elderly parent used to call you 3 times a week, but this has increased to 5 times a week or dropped to only once a week, this could be another symptom. An increased need to communicate may stem from a feeling of loneliness, where an elderly loved one is trying to reach out for company.

On the other hand, if communication has decreased this could also be a sign that they are becoming withdrawn and depressed due to loneliness. Pay close attention to an elderly loved one’s communication patterns and try to find out why they have become inconsistent.

5. Becoming a Home Hermit

This could be as a result of finding home a far more comfortable, safe space if an elderly parent is disabled, immobile or struggling with communication.

If an elderly loved one is choosing to stay at home rather than attend their regular social gatherings, loneliness and depression could be the cause.

Have You Considered Assisted Living?

An assisted living community may be the ideal solution to an elderly parent or loved one’s loneliness epidemic. These communities are based on offering daily support to the elderly in the form of medical assistance, nursing staff, and social gatherings.

Assisted living communities are exactly what they say they are, a community which offers the companionship of like-minded people.

While the initial suggestion may not be immediately welcomed by an elderly loved one, it could offer peace-of-mind for both them and family members down the line. They may resent the decision initially, but with time may come to realize that assisted living was the best choice they ever made.

Looking for Senior Living Care?

Maple Heights Senior Living, based in Washington D.C. is one of the city’s newest senior living centers. At Maple Heights we are focused on assisted living, combatting signs of loneliness in the elderly, and memory care.

Rest with the ultimate peace-of-mind that your elderly loved one is cared for in a truly professional, modern and friendly senior community. Take a look at the amenities we offer here.

assisted living vs. nursing home Senior Living Tips & Advice

Assisted Living vs Nursing Home: What’s the Difference?

Are you concerned about a beloved parent or another aging family member? Do you wonder what type of care they’ll need in the near future?

If so, you’re not alone. As of 2014, over 1.7 million Americans lived in nursing homes. A million more live in some type of assisted living community–and that number is expected to triple by 2040.

While both types of facilities care for senior patients, there are some key differences between the two. In this post, we’ll examine assisted living vs nursing home care so you can decide which is best for your loved one.

What to Expect in an Assisted Living Community

Assisted or senior living communities are designed for those who can’t safely live on their own anymore but don’t require 24-hour care.

In general, people who live in assisted living communities are still in fairly good health. They can generally move around, dress, and feed themselves.

But they may need assistance from a nurse for minor medical reasons. They might also need the help of a caregiver to assist with routine tasks like cooking, cleaning, or bathing. Some facilities also offer services and care for memory-impaired patients with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.

One of the main advantages of an assisted living community is that its residents are given a large amount of freedom. Community activities are also popular, ranging from shopping trips and movie nights to fitness classes and karaoke.

The idea of an assisted living community is just that–to make its residents feel that they’re still very much part of an active community.

What to Expect in a Nursing Home

Nursing homes offer the same excellent level of care as assisted living communities. The main difference is that they’re designed for those with more serious health problems that require round-the-clock care.

Nursing homes are staffed with skilled nurses and nurse practitioners who oversee the care of their residents. They prescribe and administer medical treatment, as well as providing physical, occupational, or speech therapies.

Although nursing homes do offer some “community” activities, their primary focus is providing quality medical care for its residents. In many cases, the residents are not physically or cognitively able to participate in many activities.

If your loved one’s health has declined to the point where they need round-the-clock care, a nursing home may be the best choice. If they’re still healthy enough to handle most of their daily care themselves, they may thrive in an assisted living environment.

Assisted Living vs Nursing Home: Which Will You Choose?

Now that you know the differences between assisted living vs nursing home care, the only thing left to do is choose.

Of course, your choice is not an easy one. It’s heartbreaking to watch a beloved family member get older.

But rest assured that whichever path you choose, your loved one is sure to receive the care they need and deserve.

Do you live in the Washington DC area? Are you interested in seeing a beautiful assisted living community for yourself?

Click here to schedule a tour of the Maple Heights Senior Living Community and see everything we have to offer.

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