Tag Archives: Sage Education

Preventing Social Isolation in Seniors



For many seniors, continuing to live in their own home provides them with the privacy and freedom that they feel that they would give up if they moved to a senior living community. Unfortunately, according to a recent study, nearly half of seniors who age in place experience social isolation. Social connections are important at every stage of life, and loneliness is associated with a broad range of physical and mental health risks.

Keep reading to discover 5 ways to prevent social isolation in seniors.

Promote a Sense of Purpose

For many seniors, the reality of retirement is not all it was cracked up to be. Whether they loved their career or spent years counting down to the day when they could hand in their notice, they’ve likely discovered that the novelty of carefree living does wear thin. Encourage your senior loved one to continue to pursue their hobbies and interests through their retirement years. Not only does this provide them with a sense of purpose, but many hobbies are social in nature and are a good safeguard against isolation.

Make Transportation Available

Some seniors have the desire to continue leading an active social life, but they lack access to transportation. Many seniors don’t drive, so it’s important to ensure that they are able to continue getting around in a way that feels safe and comfortable to them. Set up a schedule for family members to offer rides, arrange for a caregiver to provide transportation or help them learn how to use public transportation.

Talk to Neighbors

Sadly, many seniors can go for days without seeing another face, even in spite of the fact that most are surrounded by neighbors. If possible, talk to a trusted neighbor. Inform them of any particular issues that the senior may have, and ask them to keep a friendly eye out for anything that seems amiss.

Address Health Issues

Vision problems, hearing difficulties and incontinence are all health issues that may prevent a senior from venturing out of their home. They may worry that they’ll have a difficult time communicating or find themselves in an embarrassing situation. Encourage your senior loved one to have a hearing and vision test, make adaptive technologies available, and address incontinence issues with medication or incontinence supplies.

Be Sensitive to Loss

The loss of spouses, siblings and friends takes a huge toll on someone’s physical and emotional wellbeing. Particularly after the death of a spouse, seniors are at a higher risk of social isolation. If your senior loved one has recently lost someone close to them, go the extra mile by taking the time to visit with them. Providing them with the opportunity to share their feelings regarding the loss promotes a healthy grieving process and prevents them from spiraling into a pattern of depression and isolation.

While most people cite isolation and loneliness as their primary fear as they enter into their later years, the sad truth is that isolation is a reality for many seniors. By watching for the signs of loneliness and depression and encouraging your senior loved one to continue to pursue their interests and social engagements, you can help ensure their continued health and quality of life.

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Memory Loss: What is Normal?



These days, we’re bombarded with information from every direction. With so much to keep track of, it’s no wonder that we all experience forgetfulness, especially as we grow older. How do you decide if your loved one’s memory loss is a normal part of aging or indicative that something more serious is going on? Keep reading to learn about the differences between normal age-related memory changes and the warning signs of Alzheimer’s.

What is Normal?

It’s natural to feel alarmed when you or your loved one experiences forgetfulness. However, our ability to store information does change as we get older, and generally, there is no cause for concern. With normal age-related memory changes, your loved one may recall an event but perhaps not all of the details. Typically, they are able to follow written and spoken directions, and they are able to continue safely caring for themselves. They may forget what the date is and then later remember, they may occasionally forget which word to use or they may misplace things from time to time. With normal memory lapses, using notes as a reminder is effective; this technique is rarely useful for those suffering from dementia.

The Warning Signs of Alzheimer’s

Some memory loss may be normal as we age, but these symptoms are not. Here are 10 indicators provided by the Alzheimer’s Association that it’s time to speak with your loved one’s doctor about dementia.

  1. Memory Loss Interferes with Everyday Life- One of the most telling indicators of Alzheimer’s is when your loved one forgets recently learned information. They may ask the same question over and over or forget important dates.
  2. Difficulty Following and Participating in a Conversation- Occasionally having difficulty finding the right word is a frustration that everyone experiences, but someone with Alzheimer’s may have difficulty carrying on a conversation or calling a thing by the wrong name (ie.”hand clock” instead of “watch”).
  3. Vision Problems-  Vision changes that are related to cataracts are normal, but for some people, determining colors or judging distances may be indicative of the onset of dementia.
  4. Confusion with Time or Place- People with Alzheimer’s often live in the moment, and they may become confused by something that is not happening right then. For example, they may forget where they are and how they got there.
  5. Challenges with Planning- Someone in the beginning stages of dementia may struggle with building a plan and following through with it. They may experience difficulty with following a recipe or creating a monthly budget.
  6. Misplacing Objects- We all absentmindedly lay things down when we’re distracted, but someone with Alzheimer’s may regularly place things in strange places, such as their house keys in the refrigerator. They lose the ability to retrace their steps to find lost objects, and they may accuse others of stealing their belongings.
  7. Withdrawal from Hobbies and Social Activities- As dementia progresses, the sufferer may forget how to complete their favorite hobbies, and anything outside of their normal daily routine may become increasingly stressful.
  8. Changes in Personality or Mood- Alzheimer’s brings on a slew of emotions, and a sufferer may begin to exhibit depression and behavioral changes.
  9. Poor Judgment- A senior with Alzheimer’s may display poor judgment in the way that they manage their money, or they may pay less attention to personal grooming and hygiene.
  10. Inability to Complete Familiar Tasks- Someone with Alzheimer’s may struggle to remember the rules of their favorite game, a familiar driving route or managing a budget.

If you suspect that your loved one is in the beginning stages of dementia, intervention and support is crucial to their health, safety and quality of life. To learn more about our state-of-the-art memory care services and programs, contact one of our Sagepoint Advisors today.

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Protecting Your Senior Loved One from Scams



According to the FTC, 76% of the people who reported being the victim of a scam between January and August of last year were over the age of 50, and 56% of them were over the age of 60. While everyone is at risk of being the victim of fraud, seniors are often directly targeted.

Today, you’ll find a wide range of scams, from fraudulent prizes and destitute African princes asking for money to “utility workers” who claim that an urgent repair must be completed in the senior’s home. Why are seniors so vulnerable to scam artists? Chances are that seniors are directly targeted by scam artists simply because they’re easier to contact. Many seniors are retired and spend more time at home. They’re more likely to answer their phone and read the junk mail that clutters their mailbox.

Keep reading to learn how to identify a scam, as well as some measures that you can take to protect your senior loved one from becoming the victim of a scam artist.

Knowing the Signs of a Scam

While there are countless scams floating around, most of them follow the same basic patterns of persuasion.

1. A Sense of Urgency

To make an offer that’s hard to pass up, many scam artists will work to create a sense of urgency by telling their target that they have to act immediately in order to benefit from the offer. Other times, a scam artist posing as a professional roofer or utility worker may knock on the senior’s door and tell them that they have a home repair that must be taken care of immediately.

2. Manufactured Excitement

The scammer may make a show of being excited that the senior would have won such a wonderful prize. Oftentimes, a victim that falls prey to such a tactic gets caught up in the excitement that they forget to ask questions and make sure that everything is legit.

3. A Play for Sympathy

This tactic is used both on the phone and in scam emails. A senior may receive a message from someone pretending to be an old friend or even a government official who has fallen onto hard times and is in need of money. Generally, the recipient is instructed to wire money, with promise of a refund or even a generous amount of money in return.

4. Fake Winnings

From drawings that were never entered to prize money for a lottery ticket that was never purchased, fake winnings are a classic tactic of scam artists.

Guarding Against Scams

There are several simple, non-confrontational ways to help protect your senior loved one from being the victim of a scam.

Remind Them to Ask Questions

No matter how urgent something sounds, it’s important to take the time to ask questions. Scam artists are intentionally vague on details, so insist on receiving everything in writing, and never feel pressured to make an immediate decision.

Help Them Guard Personal Information

Remind your senior loved one to never give out personal information, including their social security number and bank account or credit card information.

Help Balance Their Checkbook

Help your senior loved one balance their checkbook, watching for large withdrawals, payments made to companies that you’re not familiar with or duplicate donations to charities.

File Complaints

Teach your loved one how to file a complaint with your state’s Consumer Fraud Bureau. This resource not only lets seniors report scams that they’ve encountered, but it also allows them to monitor common scams that are circulating in their area, making them less likely to be caught off-guard and vulnerable.

By ensuring that your senior loved one is educated on the different types of scams and what to do if they’re the target of a scam artist, you can help making sure that they’re protected.

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Choosing an Adult Day Services Center



Adult day centers provide a wonderful service to both seniors and their caregivers, but choosing the right one for your needs and lifestyle can be a challenge. With so many factors to consider and so many options available, selecting an adult day services program in Southern Maryland requires some research. Keep reading to learn how to choose an adult day services center.

Why Choose Adult Day Services?

Ideally, an older adult would begin attending an adult day services center while they are able to fully enjoy the services and features it provides. Many centers offer rich programming with arts and crafts workshops, book clubs, exercise programs and recreational outings. As needs evolve, your loved one can continue attending their adult day services center while receiving the comfort of being surrounded by familiar sights and faces.

Generally, a senior can benefit from adult day services when they are unable to care for themselves and:

  • Are experiencing loneliness and isolation
  • Do not initiate and focus on an activity
  • Spend most of their day alone
  • Are experiencing depression or anxiety
  • Are in need of mental stimulation
  • Require support or care that the caregiver cannot consistently provide without sacrificing their own quality of life

Adult day services centers provide seniors with the opportunity to reclaim their independence and continue living at home while also offering their caregiver freedom and peace of mind.

Choosing the Right Adult Day Care in Southern Maryland

When selecting an adult day service program, there are two sets of needs to consider; not only does that center need to fit the needs and lifestyle of the senior, but it must suit their caregiver as well. Here’s a list of things to consider.

Location

Whether your senior loved one will be visiting the center a couple days a week or every day, a convenient location is important. Ideally, you would choose a center that was located conveniently near your home or work. Some centers do offer transportation as a part of their services.

Services Provided

Obviously, it’s important to ensure that the services provided at the center fit the needs of you and your loved one. Depending on your schedule, you may seek out a center that provides transportation. You’ll also want to find a community that offers a full schedule of activities and provides daily meals and snacks.

Hours of Operation

Particularly if you work away from home, you will need to find a community that offers hours that work with your schedule. Some communities offer weekend hours, providing you with the opportunity to run errands.

Specialized Care and Assistance Provided

When choosing the right adult day services center, your loved one’s current needs are obviously important, but don’t forget to also consider future needs. While they may not currently require close monitoring or therapy, they may need more care in the future. The hope is that your loved one will become part of a community that can address their changing needs, so look for one that offers a variety of care options.

Social Activities

The opportunity to enjoy a vibrant social life is one of the biggest benefits of adult day services. Look for a center that fosters a strong sense of community by offering a variety of socialization opportunities.

Next Steps

Take the next step in finding out more about adult day services by contacting a Sagepoint Advisor. Our advisors can help you decide whether our community is right for you and your loved one.

 

 

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Managing Sundowners Syndrome



If you’re like most people, you greet the evening hours with a sigh of relief. The hard work of the day is over, and it’s time to relax. For millions of people suffering from dementia, however, the later hours of the day bring on agitation and confusion. This phenomenon is called “sundowning,” and it most commonly affects those who have mid-stage and advanced dementia.

By following a few tips, you can reduce sundowning symptoms, providing a much needed break for both the person suffering and their caregiver alike.

Common Triggers for Sundowning

While the transitions that take place in the evening are welcomed by most of us, they can agitate someone with dementia. Here are some of the most common triggers for someone with sundowning syndrome.

Too Much Activity

If the end of the day is marked with an overabundance of activity—shift changes, visitors coming and going, dinner, bathing and anything else that may take place—you may notice that symptoms increase. This activity can cause someone with dementia to experience confusion and nervousness.

Insufficient Lighting

Particularly if your senior loved one is in a space where they enjoy a lot of natural light, the setting sun can cause disorientation. If the one suffering from sundowning syndrome has difficulties with their vision, the low light may make their vision problems even worse.

The Winter Months

The shorter days and longer nights of the winter months can worsen the symptoms of sundowning. Especially in seniors that already suffer from depression, this reduced exposure to natural sunlight can cause Seasonal Affective Disorder, which in turn can exacerbate symptoms of sundowning.

Reducing Sundowning Symptoms

Although it may not be possible to completely eliminate troublesome symptoms, there are a few measures you can take to reduce them.

Track the Triggers

While there are certain triggers that seem to consistently cause symptoms, each person is unique. To pinpoint the specific triggers that worsen your loved one’s behavior, keep a journal of the environment, any activities, foods eaten and naps taken. This will help you see any trends with both good days and bad.

Maintain a Consistent Schedule

Dementia can make it difficult to put new schedules into place. Anything out of the ordinary, such as a different food or a new face, can cause confusion and agitation. During the evening, schedule soothing activities, such as watching movies, reading and calling family members. If possible, try to stick with a familiar schedule. If changes are absolutely necessary, try to introduce them gradually.

Promote Healthy Sleep

Many people that experienced sundowning symptoms also deal with insomnia. To prevent insomnia, try to limit naps during the day. Hours of uninterrupted daytime sleep can confuse the body and make it difficult to wind down at the end of the day. In addition to limiting naps, try to incorporate some gentle exercise every day.

Turn on a Light

Because sundowning syndrome is believed to be tied to the body’s circadian rhythms and the vision problems that worsen as the sun sets, it may be beneficial to keep the room bright and well-lit through the late afternoon and evening.

By minimizing the symptoms and triggers of sundowning, you can greatly improve the quality of life for both you and the senior in your care.

 

 

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Fun in the Sun: 5 Tips for Avoiding Heat-Related Illness in Seniors



Summer is in full swing, and as you’re enjoying the beautiful weather, it’s important to remember to practice safety. Seniors are especially vulnerable to the heat; factors such as a decreased ability to notice changes in body temperature, medications that contribute to dehydration and underlying health conditions can all make a day in the sun more dangerous.

Fortunately, following a few simple precautions are all it takes to have a fun, safe summer. Keep reading for a few guidelines on sun safety for seniors.

1. Pay Attention to the Heat Index

When deciding whether you’re going to venture outdoors, it’s the heat index that you need to watch. A 75-degree morning can feel significantly hotter if there is a lot of moisture in the air. Because the humidity impairs the body’s ability to cool itself by sweating, a senior can become overheated more quickly.

The heat index takes into account the both the temperature and the humidity level, giving you a more accurate picture of whether you can safely stay outdoors for an extended period of time.

2. Drink Water

Seniors who are dealing with a chronic illness, such as a heart or kidney disease or a blood circulation condition, may already have a difficult time maintaining the proper level of hydration. In addition to this, many blood pressure medications, as well as some that are used to control diabetes, often act as diuretics. These health-related factors may cause seniors to be particularly susceptible to dehydration. To prevent dehydration while enjoying warm weather, be sure to drink plenty of water. Once the body reaches a certain point of dehydration, it’s increasingly difficult to replenish lost fluids. Take a proactive approach by encouraging your senior loved one to drink nonalcoholic and caffeine-free beverages throughout the day, even if they are not feeling thirsty.

3. Seek Out Air Conditioning

For seniors that live in a home without air conditioning, summer can be especially uncomfortable and dangerous. During the hottest times of the day, seek out an air conditioned environment. Your local library, an indoor shopping mall or an adult day service center provide wonderful places to relax and beat the heat.

4. Be Wise with Outdoor Activity

If summertime is synonymous with long walks in the sun, hours of gardening and afternoons of lounging on a beach, then it may be time to make some changes. Encourage your senior loved one to avoid exercise and other strenuous activity during the hottest part of the day, usually between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. If necessary, guide them in dressing appropriately for the weather by wearing loose-fitting, lightweight and light-colored clothing.

5. Know the Signs of Heat-Related Illness

The early signs of heat exhaustion, which may proceed heat stroke, include tiredness, excessive sweating, dizziness, headaches, muscle cramps and crankiness. As heat exhaustion progresses, you may also see symptoms such as nausea, vomiting or fainting. Heat stroke, which is significantly more serious, can set in as quickly as 15 minutes after the first symptoms of heat exhaustion. If you see symptoms of heat stroke, such as confusion, loss of consciousness or the absence of sweating, seek emergency medical assistance.

By following these five guidelines for practicing caution in the sun, you can help ensure that the summer continues to be safe and enjoyable.

 

 

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Assisted Living vs. Home Care: Which Option Is Right for You?

Granddaughter helping her disabled grandmother walk with the aid of a walker.



If you have an elderly loved one who is losing their ability to safely live independently, then you’re no doubt researching senior care options. Two common options for senior care include assisted living and home care. Keep reading to get an overview of both Assisted Living and Home Care and a guide for choosing the route that is right for you and your loved one.

Assisted Living

Assisted living communities provide personal care support services such as meals, medication management, transportation, and assistance with the activities of daily living such as dressing and bathing. This option is ideal for seniors who need daily assistance but still want to maintain as much of their independence as possible. In addition to receiving around-the-clock personal care, seniors often also have the opportunity to participate in recreational activities like book clubs, social outings, gardening and more.

The Pros of Assisted Living

  • The opportunity for social engagement
  • Adapts to changing needs
  • Home-like environment
  • Reduces worry about upkeep and maintenance of home
  • Onsite amenities, such as salon services, visiting physicians, and gardens
  • Various levels of assistance available

The Cons of Assisted Living

  • Less privacy and independence than living at home
  • You may need to transition to a nursing home if your condition deteriorates beyond what is appropriate for assisted living (Senior care communities offering both assisted living and long term care services may be ideal)
  • Assisted living is not the most expensive option, but neither is it the least expensive

Home Care

Many seniors wish to remain in their home for as long as possible, and if only minor assistance is needed, home care is a wonderful option. Home care offers care plans that can be customized to fit the needs of your family and your loved one. Companion care services may consist of ensuring basic safety, light housekeeping, laundry, appointment escort, and more. Personal care services, performed by a CNA, may consist of feeding assistance, medication management, bathing/showering, hair/skin/oral care, toileting assistance, and more.

The Pros of Home Care

  • The ability to age in place
  • The preservation of privacy and freedom
  • If a form of dementia should develop, the familiar surroundings may provide comfort
  • Care is administered by a professional caregiver
  • It may be less costly than other options

The Cons of Home Care

  • The home may not be equipped for changes in mobility and physical abilities
  • You may be at a disadvantage in the case of a medical emergency

Making the Right Choice

When choosing the best option for your loved one, consider these questions:

  • Does your loved one wish to remain at home?
  • Is the home a safe environment, or can changes be made to make it safer?
  • Would they benefit from assistance with medication management?
  • Do they wish to continue preparing their own meals, or would they benefit from meal preparation services?
  • Are they socially isolated?
  • Would they benefit from being part of an active community?
  • Are there any family members that can move in with them, or who they could move in with?
  • Are they in need of around-the-clock care, and is there anyone who can provide the level of care that they need?
  • Are there financial limitations to consider?

By including your senior loved one in the decision-making process and taking their needs and preferences into consideration, you can ensure that you reach a decision that suits every family member.

Do you need additional assistance in choosing the senior care option that is best for your situation? Our Sagepoint Advisors can provide guidance for every step of the way. Contact us today to learn more about Sagepoint Home Care and Sagepoint Gardens, and let us assist you in choosing the option that right for you.

 

 

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Coping with Dementia

Coping with Dementia



Helping a loved one cope with dementia is a challenging experience. During this season of sadness, anger and confusion, you may notice a variety of unexpected behaviors, such as depression, hallucinations and even aggression.

Continue reading to learn more about helping your loved one cope with some of the feelings and behaviors that may accompany Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.

Anger and Aggression

Aggressive behaviors, whether they are verbal or physical, may occur without warning. Unnerving though it may be, it’s important to remember that the person who is acting aggressively is not doing so to be hurtful; they’re simply trying to navigate a frustrating and scary situation. Aggression can be caused by a variety of factors, such as pain or discomfort, overstimulation, tiredness and fear. As dementia progresses and your loved one loses cognitive function, they also lose the ability to identify and verbalize the root of their frustration or discomfort. As a result, they may express themselves through aggressive behaviors.

While it may not be possible to completely eliminate anger and aggression, there are a variety of ways you can help to minimize your loved one’s frustration. Begin by trying to identify the source of stress. Did something happen immediately before the behavior that may have triggered the response? Is he or she in pain? If there is no obvious cause for the reaction, survey their surroundings to ensure that they are not overstimulated. If possible, shift the focus to another activity, such as music, exercise or a massage. Most importantly, remember to not get upset; keep a positive and reassuring attitude and speak with a soft, soothing tone.

Depression

Depression is one of the most common issues faced by people with dementia, especially during the early stages. However, identifying depression in someone with dementia can be difficult, as the symptoms differ from those present in someone without dementia. Generally speaking, the symptoms may be less severe and may come and go. The most common symptoms of depression include sleep problems, social withdrawal, irritability and a loss of appetite.

If you suspect that your loved one is dealing with depression, it’s important to let their doctor know. Depression can be successfully treated through a combination of medication and therapy. In addition to ensuring that your loved one gets the professional help they need, you can participate in their care by helping them develop a daily schedule that incorporates activities that they enjoy, encouraging regular exercise and providing a listening ear and an encouraging outlook. While it may take time, ensuring that your loved one receives the appropriate treatment for their depression can improve their quality of life considerably.

Hallucinations

When someone with dementia hallucinates, they may see, smell, taste or hear something that isn’t there. Some hallucinations can be very upsetting, while others may occur without the sufferer even realizing that they are experiencing something that isn’t happening. Hallucinations are a byproduct of the changes that are happening in the brain and are generally more common in those who are in the later stages of dementia.

When determining how to handle hallucinations, assess the situation. Are the hallucinations causing distress for the person experiencing them, or are they likely to cause a dangerous reaction? If not, then it’s best to not intervene. However, if they are upsetting, respond with a calm and supportive manner. If possible, try to turn the focus to something like music or a favorite activity.

The behaviors that accompany dementia can be difficult to handle, but fortunately, there is help. Sagepoint Memory Care utilizes a state-of-the-art approach to promote the best quality of life possible. To find out more about our community or to speak with a Sagepoint Advisor, contact us today.

 

 

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Recognizing and Addressing Malnutrition in Seniors



Malnutrition is a prevalent problem among seniors. In fact, it is estimated that in the United States, 3.7 million seniors suffer from inadequate nutrition. Keep reading to learn more about the causes and signs of malnutrition and what you can do to prevent this dangerous condition.

What Causes Malnutrition in Seniors?

When it comes to a lack of nutrition in seniors, poverty plays a significant role. In 2013, half of all Medicare recipients were living off of an income of less than $23,500. The costs of medical care and prescription medications alone may make it difficult to afford anything beyond the barest of necessities. Between modest fixed incomes and small savings accounts, many seniors simply don’t have the resources to support a nourishing diet.

In addition to limited means, there are several other reasons that a senior may not receive adequate nutrition. Factors such as the side effects of certain medications, difficulty chewing and swallowing and a lack of interest in cooking contribute to malnutrition. Changing taste buds and restrictive low sodium, low fat and low sugar diets may simply take the joy from eating.

Dangers of Malnutrition

Unfortunately, the absence of a high quality diet is associated with numerous risks, many of which amplify the health problems already common among older adults. Poor nutrition is associated with unhealthy weight loss, loss of muscle or muscle weakness, a weakened immune system, depression and fatigue. Malnourished seniors also have a greater fall risk, which may interfere with their safety and independence.

Recognizing Malnutrition in Your Senior Loved One

Because the symptoms of malnutrition can mirror the problems that may already present in older adults, identifying them might take a little bit of detective work. If your loved one is living alone, take a few seconds during a visit to discreetly take an inventory of their refrigerator and pantry. Pay attention to any drastic changes in weight, and do your best to keep track of any medications your loved one is taking, as certain medications may cause a loss of appetite.

Caring for a Malnourished Senior

Once you have determined that your loved one is struggling with malnutrition, help him or her seek medical treatment. If possible, visit your loved one during meal times, and keep an eye on their intake of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean meats. If there are special dietary needs or considerations that have made it difficult for your senior loved one to enjoy their meals, encourage them to experiment with different herbs and spices to give bland foods a boost in flavor. Make sure that their medical provider is aware of any difficulties with eating. A family doctor or nutritionist can provide guidance for practical ways to incorporate more nutrients while limiting the intake of solid fats, added sugar and processed foods.

If your loved one has difficulty adhering to a healthy diet, assisted living or home care might be appropriate options for them. Whether they have dietary restrictions or difficulty with chewing and swallowing, or they simply lack the ability or desire to plan a menu and prepare their own well-balanced meals, having a caregiver come out to your senior’s residence or transitioning to an assisted living community can help ensure that they receive adequate nutrition. To find out more about our senior care options, contact one of our Sagepoint advisors today.

 

 

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Making the Transition: Helping Your Loved One Move to Assisted Living

Portrait Of Senior Mother And Adult Daughter



Moving a loved one to an assisted living community can be a challenging experience. Oftentimes, seniors are leaving the security of a beloved home, the familiarity of longtime neighbors and the feeling of independence. However, once you and your loved one have reached the decision that assisted living will offer them their highest quality of life, it’s important to make sure that the transition goes as smoothly as possible. Keep reading to learn more about helping a loved one transition to assisted living.

Do Your Research

Whether your loved one is looking for a close-knit group home setting or a larger community with more amenities, there is a place where they can feel at home. The first step to ensuring that the transition is as smooth as possible is to find the home environment that will fit your loved one’s current preferences. While both group homes and larger communities offer services like complimentary transportation, home cooked meals and housekeeping and laundry services, they may differ greatly when it comes to things like enrichment programs, social activities and on site amenities. Determine the type of community in which your senior loved one will thrive and feel comfortable.

Making the Move

Once you have found the community that is right for your loved one, it’s time to get them settled into their new home. Tempting though it may be to spend a weekend shopping for their new room or suite, it’s important for them to be surrounded by familiar items. Encourage them to bring their own bedding, a few dishes, pictures and anything else that may make their new living quarters feel like home. When in doubt, bring more than you think they’ll need; they can always pare down later.

Helping Them Engage

Even if your loved one generally prefers solitude, it’s important for them to feel engaged with the community. Starting on the first day, encourage them to get involved with a scheduled activity. In many cases, assisted living communities such as Sagepoint Gardens allow family members join in the fun, so attend a discussion group, a wellness activity or an offsite activity with them. After your initial “push,” it may be easier for your loved one to begin building those connections in a way that feels natural and comfortable to them.

By doing your homework and playing an active role when helping a loved one transition to assisted living, you can ensure that the process is as smooth and enjoyable process.

Are you ready to help your loved one move to an assisted living community but you don’t know where to begin? Contact us today to learn more about our assisted living services and how we can help you and your family. Our friendly and knowledgeable Advisors are ready to assist you in finding the right care for your loved one.

 

 

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