Monthly Archives: February 2016

Your senior health guide to arthritis

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), arthritis affects more than one in five adults in the United States and is the country’s leading cause of disability. In this article, representatives from United Methodist Homes (UMH) of New Jersey answer the most commonly asked question about this condition.

What is arthritis? 

Arthritis is a term used to describe more than 100 different rheumatic diseases and conditions – those that affect the joints, surrounding tissue and connective tissues. Some forms of arthritis can also affect the immune system and specific internal organs.

What are the symptoms of arthritis? 

Although different rheumatic disorders have different symptoms, arthritis is generally linked to the slow but progressive development of joint pain, inflammation and stiffness. The symptoms are also usually more severe in the early morning or after a period of inactivity.

What are the most common types of arthritis?

  • Osteoarthritis: This is a chronic disease that affects only the joints, causing progressive pain and stiffness. Joint pain is usually felt after repetitive use or long periods of inactivity. Severe cases lead to friction between the bones of the joints as protective cartilage is worn away. It is treated with low-impact activities, healthy weight maintenance and anti-inflammatories.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis: This chronic autoimmune disease attacks the joints and other body parts. Symptoms can include joint pain and swelling and stiffness and warmth of the affected site. It can flare up and fade, often due to strenuous use or inactivity of the joint, but it cannot be cured. Usually, treatment involves nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, steroids or disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs, or a combination of these treatments.
  • Gout: This is caused by high levels of uric acid in the body that form crystals in the joints. If untreated, these crystals can form tophi (lumps) within the joints and surrounding tissue. Gout can flare up quickly and without warning, leading to pain and inflammation. It is often treated with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and steroids.  After the attack dies down, medication and lifestyle changes can be implemented to reduce the risk of another attack.

Community-based senior living solutions for an independent lifestyle 

At United Methodist Homes of New Jersey, we offer a wide range of tailored support services for older adults in an environment that delivers the highest quality of life. Designed to enhance independence, our assisted living and senior living residential facilities are designed to assist your loved one’s individual needs, and to scale these services at any point if a different level of care is needed. In addition to catering  to independent seniors, we are also able to provide respite care and long-term care, as well as assist the needs of residents with conditions such as arthritis.

For more information, please contact UMH today or visit


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Five great services for seniors in Camden County


Having an active social life brings many great benefits to seniors, helping them to stay healthy, active and enjoy all that life has to offer. Camden County has an extensive range of senior services designed specifically to help seniors stay active members of their communities.

  1. Camden County Cultural and Heritage Commission: The services this organization provides include art workshops, an art gallery and musical performances. They also offer musical performances for residents that are housebound. Located on S. Park Drive and Shady Lane, they can also be reached at (856) 858-0040.
  2. Camden County Libraries: Free membership is available to all seniors living in member communities, including Gloucester Township, Haddon Township, Winslow Township, Bellmawr, Merchantville, and Camden.
  3. State parks:Citizens 62 or older qualify for a Golden Passport (costing just $10) that allows access to all national parks, historic sites and recreational areas under the Federal Government. This passport also may include discounts on activities inside these areas, including camping, boat launching and parking.
  4. Recreational trips:There is a year-long calendar filled with trips for seniors, including day trips, overnight stays and weeklong vacations. To find out more, contact the Senior Citizen United Community Services at (856) 456-1121.
  5. The Walt Whitman Cultural Arts Center, Inc.: This center offers a full year calendar of cultural events for seniors, including plays, exhibits and poetry readings. While some events are free, any paid events carry a reduced fee for seniors.

Independent assisted living for seniors in New Jersey 

UMH Collingswood Manor in Camden County is designed to enhance independence. Our residential programs and living options assist your loved one only when they require it and scale these services at any point if a different level of care is needed. In addition to catering to independent seniors, we also offer care for  those needing assistance.

Collingswood Manor in Camden County NJ also serves residents of Gloucester County, Salem County and Cumberland County.and especially the towns of Collingswood, Camden, Cherry Hill, Gloucester, Pennsauken, Voorhees Township, and Winslow Township, New Jersey.

For more information, please contact UMH Collingswood Manor today and ask about our assisted living community  or visit


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Celebrating Valentine’s Day with your senior loved ones in Gloucester County, NJ

Valentine’s Day isn’t just for couples – it’s a great opportunity to show the seniors in your life how much you love them! Fortunately, Gloucester County has a wide range of activities and attractions suitable for everyone, young and old.

For the foodies:

If your family loves great food and beautiful restaurants, then lunch or dinner at one of the area’s top restaurants will be a great treat! For ambience, comfort and great food, try any of the following restaurants:

  • Rhode’s Fireside Restaurant and Tavern: For over 20 years, this restaurant has been offering the best in home-style cooking. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, they offer a menu that has all your family’s favorites.
  • Guillermo’s on Broadway: If your family loves all things Italian, then this is the place to go. With an extensive menu that’s sure to please everyone, as well as your budget, this restaurant is perfect for a family lunch or dinner.

Other fun activities:

  • Painting with a Twist: If you and your loved ones enjoy getting creative, then a day of painting could be the perfect outing. Ideal for any age, these artist-led events are designed to be relaxing and fun – and you get to go home with a work of art you can proudly display and share.
  • Broadway Theatre: A beautiful French Revival theatre, this venue has a full program of live entertainment and classic films throughout the year.

A lively community for independent seniors in New Jersey 

At United Methodist Homes (UMH) of New Jersey, we offer a wide range of tailored support services for older adults in an environment that delivers the highest quality of life. For instance, Pitman Manor in Gloucester County is designed to enhance independence, while our residential programs and living options are designed to assist your loved one’s individual needs, which can be scaled at any point if they require a different level of care. In addition to catering for independent seniors, our services also offer expert care for people with Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Pitman Manor serves Burlington, Camden, Salem and Gloucester counties as well as the communities of Deptford Township, Glassboro, Harrison Township, Pitman, Sewell, Sicklerville, West Deptford, and Woodbury, New Jersey.

Please contact UMH Pitman Manor today and ask about our assisted living community.

For more information, visit


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Senior living tips: How to prevent falls

Falls in the home are one of the biggest risks facing seniors. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) say that one out of three seniors fall each year – and that falling once doubles the risk of a second fall.

This is a very serious issue for seniors, as falls carry a  high risk of broken bones and head injuries, with over 250,000 older adults needing hospitalization for hip fractures alone.

In addition to carrying significant personal trauma and financial cost, injuries also tend to have a longer and more intensive recovery time as we age, requiring more extensive therapy and medical attention.

Here are some tips for minimizing the risk of falls in seniors’ homes: 

  • De-clutter: Clutter creates tight spaces full of obstacles, making the home hard to move through freely. This can include anything from rooms overcrowded with furniture to stacks of books and magazines. Removing clutter and ensuring wide paths for walkers and wheelchairs will prevent collisions and injuries from falling items.
  • Install good lighting: Poor lighting won’t just strain your eyes, it also makes it harder to see where you’re going – making good lighting (especially in hallways and on staircases) an essential safety feature. Installing nightlights by the bed is a great way to softly light a bedroom without having to get up in total darkness.
  • Handrails: Installing handrails or grab bars in bathrooms and on stairs will help seniors to maneuver themselves more quickly and easily without loosing their balance.
  • Remove tripping hazards: Things like loose rugs, polished floors, electrical cables and damaged floorboards can easily cause a fall. You can either repair the item or remove it from the home and replace it with something secure and safe to walk on.
  • Non-slip carpeting and mats: Putting non-slip mats in bathtubs and showers will give your loved one an extra grip when bathing. They can also be placed on kitchen floors and tiled/smooth-surfaced outdoor areas that can get wet and slippery.
  • Get the right clothing: Trousers and skirts that are too long are another serious tripping hazard for seniors. Correctly hemmed clothing will help increase comfort and safety. Also, check the soles of your loved one’s shoes for wear that can reduce their grip and, if your loved one likes wearing socks around the house, invest in some non-slip socks.

Our Continuing Care Retirement Communities are designed with safety in mind 

At United Methodist Homes (UMH) of New Jersey, we offer all our residents comfortable and spacious senior living accommodations that are designed to meet senior safety standards – whether your loved one is independent or requires assisted living services. Complete with 24-hour emergency alert and fire safety systems, these apartments are well lit, fully equipped and easily navigable on foot, with a walker or in a wheelchair. We also offer housekeeping services, interior maintenance services, meal services and 24-hour access to licensed nurses for additional care and peace of mind.

For more information on our independent senior living, assisted living, long-term and nursing home care communities in Sussex County, Camden County, Monmouth County, greater Gloucester County and greater Cape May County in New Jersey, please contact us at UMH today or visit for more information.


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