Monthly Archives: October 2018

4 Signs Caregivers Can Benefit from Senior Home Health Care Services

What could be causing these morning migraines?

As a leading senior home health care services provider, we know all the challenges and joys of providing care to the elderly. And while this work is a wonderful opportunity to support seniors and give back, there’s no disguising that it’s a tough job.

For family caregivers, this job can be even tougher because of their close, personal connections with the loved ones in their care. Here are some signs that a caregiver can benefit from professional assistance:

  1. Constant exhaustion. Everyone experiences a busy, difficult day on occasion, when nothing seems to go right, and you end the day feeling exhausted — but this shouldn’t be the norm. Trying to balance caregiving, a job, a family, and your own needs is a massive amount of work and can easily lead to burnout. Having the assistance of a home health aide helps make all these tasks more manageable, even if it’s on a respite basis for a few days a week.
  2. You have no time for yourself. If you can’t remember the last time you indulged your own interests, you may be taking on too much. Everyone needs time to watch a movie, go out with friends or unwind with a favorite hobby. It’s not being selfish — it’s essential for caregivers, helping you recharge and de-stress so you can go back to your loved one feeling energized, positive and relaxed.
  3. You’re ill. Whether you’re overworking yourself, dealing with multiple sources of stress or simply deal with your own health conditions, being ill and repeatedly falling ill clearly show that caregivers need a break. Not only does being ill yourself put your loved one at risk, it can also signal that stress is taking a toll on your physical wellness. Letting a professional step in and take some of the load off your shoulders will provide essential relief.
  4. You’re feeling depressed, anxious and stressed. Caregiving is a mentally and emotionally tough role, especially for family caregivers. This can lead to depression, frustration and anxiety about coping with your role. Family caregivers should make the time to attend support groups, speak to a therapist and take care of their own mental wellness to avoid caregiver burnout. A qualified home health aide can step in and take care of as much of the work as you need — letting you focus on spending quality time with your loved one.

Affordable Short and Long-Term Senior Home Health Care Services in New Jersey 

At United Methodist Communities, we strive to offer the very best quality senior home health care services through our HomeWorks program. Our team of certified and experienced home health aides are passionate about assisting the elderly in the comfort of their own homes and providing them, their families and caregivers with personalized, compassionate care that prioritizes health, happiness and independence. In addition to medical care and daily home care, we also offer pastoral care for spiritual and emotional support in the home.

For more information on our senior home health care services or to find a qualified home health aide in New Jersey, please contact us today or visit our website at

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Long-term Care Planning Month-The Ideal Time to Start Planning for Retirement


Long-term care planning is a critical part of retirement planning, ensuring that you and your spouse have the assistance and care you require later in life. In observance of long-term care planning month, our assisted living team in Gloucester County is sharing some great advice and tips to make this easier and more effective:

  • Think about your worst-case scenario. While most people avoid thinking about the worst possibilities, the fact is that taking a realistic look at your position and possible outcomes is the best way of avoiding worst-case scenarios. The first step toward creating a functional long-term care plan is to be thorough and open about your personal situation, spending habits, financial capabilities and care requirements.
  • Housing considerations. Starting your planning process early allows you to examine the options available in your community and develop a plan that can accommodate your needs as they change. You may want to stay in your current home for the next few years and then find an assisted living community once it becomes too much to handle.

If you or your spouse has health conditions like Alzheimer’s, look at long-term care facilities that offer memory care and therapies while still offering the other an independent lifestyle. This stage is all about knowing the options, what each offers and what they cost.

  • Health considerations. Even if you are currently in good health, it’s important to have a plan in place to meet your needs or those of your spouse if either of you become seriously ill or disabled. Make sure your wishes are well-known to your dependents, ensure your healthcare directives are up-to-date and talk to your doctor about ways you can better protect your health. It’s also a good idea to ensure that your insurance can adequately cover your needs if your health deteriorates.
  • Financial considerations. The cost of long-term care is on the rise and is currently sitting at a national average of $97,455 per year for a private room in a nursing home and $45,000 per year at an assisted living facility. This means that having a financial plan in place is essential, so speak to your advisor about how best to fund long-term care, available coverage options and qualifications for Medicaid.

You can get a better idea about the costs involved by visiting local assisted living communities, finding out how much their services cost and what you are getting for your money.

Assisted Living in Gloucester County Means Comprehensive Care and a Warm Community

Pitman is an assisted living community in Gloucester County, NJ, offering high quality, scalable assisted living services in a comfortable, well-supported and beautiful environment. As part of the United Methodist Communities network, we also offer rehabilitation, access to therapists, hospice care, respite care and memory care and support services. We welcome seniors from all faith backgrounds.

To find out more about our assisted living community, please visit our website at contact us today or book a personal tour.

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5 Effective Exercises to Do from Your Wheelchair

One of the greatest challenges we face as we grow older is maintaining mobility — and for seniors in wheelchairs, this is even more important. Exercise is a great way to maintain health, prevent injuries and increase stamina.

CCRC Sussex County in New Jersey

Here are some useful strength-building exercises from our CCRC in Sussex County, New Jersey that are easy to do in a wheelchair and go a long way towards helping seniors stay active and mobile:

  1. Shoulder retractions. Sit up straight and tense your ab muscles to support your back. Hold your arms at 90-degrees in front of you at shoulder level, hands facing the ground. Curve your fingers as if you are gripping something. Push your arms straight out and then bring your arms in by bending your elbows (maintaining shoulder level height) and bringing your fists towards your shoulders.

You’ll feel your shoulder blades and muscles squeezing. Repeat the action and add a resistance band between your hand when you are ready for a stronger exercise.

  1. Chest squeeze. Sit up straight with your and muscles engaged and hold a medicine ball or therapy ball at chest level. Squeeze the ball to contract your chest muscles, pushing the ball forward at the same time until your arms are nearly fully extended, then bring it back towards your chest. Repeat the action and add a more resistant ball when you are ready for a stronger exercise.
  2. Top taps. Sit up straight with your ab muscles engaged and your feet flat on the ground. Lift your toes upwards as far as you can and then back to the floor and repeat.
  3. Tummy twist. Sit up straight with your ab muscles engaged and your feet flat on the ground, holding your arms out at 90-degrees with your forearms extended and your elbows by your side. Rotate your upper torso slowly to the left as far as you can go and then repeat to the right.
  4. Knee lifts. With your feet flat on the floor, sit upright in the chair and engage your ab muscles. Slowly lift your right knee up towards your chest as far as you can comfortably manage, then lower it back to the starting position. Repeat with your left knee.

A Welcoming Community Spirit at Our CCRC in Sussex County, NJ

Bristol Glen is a CCRC and assisted living community based in Sussex County that aims to provide seniors with comfortable, serviced living arrangements that free up your time to enjoy life. Contact us to find out more about our CCRC and our assisted living facilities, amenities and services, please visit our website at and book your visit today.

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What Senior Women Need to Know about Breast Cancer


October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, so the team at our senior living community in Camden County, New Jersey is raising awareness about breast cancer and how breast health can be maintained as we get older.

Breast Cancer Risks in Older Women

Research has shown that breast cancer is the second most common cause of death in all women, with higher risks and a lower survival rate for older women — particularly between the ages of 65 and 80. In fact, around half of all women diagnosed in this age group die of this disease, often because they are more likely to contract the more aggressive forms of this cancer.

Along with a family history of breast cancer, exposure to estrogen throughout your lifespan (when your menstrual periods began and ended, number and timing of pregnancies, and hormone replacement therapy), alcohol usage and exposure to radiation therapies, as well as aging itself, are all risk factors.

How Can Older Women Effectively Manage Their Breast Health?

As with many other health conditions, you play a vital role in your own health and fighting against these diseases. For older women, it is recommended that you:

  1. Have all three types of breast exams conducted on a regular basis. This means doing a self-exam each week to look for lumps or changes in breast size, having a clinical exam conducted by your doctor at least once a year, and a mammogram screening once a year. As with many cancers, early intervention is key to effectively fighting this condition.
  2. Know your coverage. Ensure that your health insurance, Medicare or Medicaid covers your screenings and that you commit to their recommended number of screenings per year. Remember, the American Geriatrics Society recommends mammogram screenings each year for women up to the age of 85.
  3. Reduce your alcohol intake. There are clear links between alcohol consumption and breast cancer. For healthy seniors, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism recommends no more than three alcoholic drinks a day and no more than seven per week. For seniors with health problems and on medications, it is recommended that you speak to your doctor as alcohol can interfere with your treatment and worsen symptoms.

Independent Living for Seniors at Our Assisted Living Community in Camden County, NJ

Collingswood is part of the United Methodist Communities network of high-quality, non-profit assisted living communities specializing in independent living for seniors. With an experienced care and assistance team, scalable services customized to each resident’s needs, and a lively social calendar, we focus our community to provide essential resources that promote independence and quality of life.

To find out more about United Methodist Communities or our assisted living community in Camden County, NJ, please visit our website at or contact us and book your visit today.

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5 Things Seniors Need to do to Prepare for Winter

Winter car upkeeping: Antifreeze

Winter is approaching quickly and along with all the celebrations and festivities, the season also brings a few challenges like snow, ice and cold weather. Here are five tips for seniors to prepare for the winter ahead from our specialists in home help services for the elderly:

  1. Home maintenance. Start early with home maintenance before the rush sets in. Have your home’s heating system checked and serviced, make sure the gutters are cleared out and schedule small home maintenance repairs before they become bigger problems. It’s also a good idea to have smoke and CO(carbon monoxide) detectors checked to ensure they’re in good working order.
  2. Wardrobe. Go through your winter wardrobe thoroughly to ensure that your warm weather items are in good condition and within easy reach when the cold sets in. Make sure you have enough warm clothing, scarves and blankets, as well as weather-proof gear, for when you go outdoors. Check your shoes to make sure they are still weather-tight and can grip well to avoid slipping on ice. Walking sticks must also be checked to ensure that worn cane tips are replaced.
  3. Car maintenance. Driving in the winter can be dangerous, so make sure your vehicle is fully serviced before the icy weather arrives — check oil, wiper blades, tires and the battery. Ensure that your roadside assistance service is up-to-date and pack an emergency kit to leave inside your vehicle (not in the trunk). This kit should include a blanket, snacks with a long expiration date, hat/socks/gloves, booster cables, emergency flare, flashlight with additional batteries, cellphone adapter to charge your phone from inside the car, basic first aid kit and bottled water.
  4. Home provisions. Stock up with non-perishable foods and bottled water to eliminate trips during bad weather. Frozen meals can also be stockpiled in your freezer. Aim for as much variety as possible and ensure that you have Vitamin-D-rich foods like tuna, salmon, milk and grains. Also, stock up on common over-the-counter medications.
  5. Assistance. If needed, don’t hesitate to ask for help from neighbors, family, and friends. They can take on bigger jobs like clearing away snow and ice, home maintenance or fetching winter goods out of hard-to-reach places. Lifts to and from the shops, appointments or social events can also make daily life a lot easier. Some communities even have shuttle services specifically to help seniors.

Winter or Summer, Choose the Best Home Help Services for the Elderly in NJ 

At United Methodist Communities, we strive to offer the very best home health aide services in New Jersey through HomeWorks. This program is about assisting the elderly in the comfort of their own homes and providing them, their families and caregivers with personalized, compassionate care that prioritizes health, happiness and independence.

For more information on our at home health care agency or our residential in home respite care in NJ, please contact us today or visit our website at

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A Guide to Putting Your Affairs in Order

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When diagnosed with a terminal illness, one of the tasks patients need to address is ensuring that their personal paperwork is in order. Despite the negative connotations of this task, it can be a very empowering process that delivers great peace-of-mind. Here are some tips to help with that process from our hospice in South Jersey.

A Checklist of Basic Documentation

Every person’s situation and requirements are unique, but the basics apply to everyone. The general documentation and information you should gather into a file includes:

General information

  1. Your full legal name, social security number, date and location of birth and current address.
  2. The names and contact information for your spouse, children or nearest dependents.
  3. A list of your current medications and contact information for your doctors.
  4. A copy of your Living Will, Advance Directive, Last Will and Testament and Power of Attorney documents, and your lawyer’s contact details /whoever holds the original documents.
  5. A copy of your birth certificate, marriage certificate, divorce certificate, citizenship documentation, etc. and instructions on where the originals are located.
  6. Military records, if applicable.

Financial information

  1. Medicare/Medicaid information.
  2. Social security information.
  3. Credit/debit card information.
  4. List of bank accounts and safety deposit box information.
  5. Insurance information – life insurance, homeowner’s insurance, car insurance, long-term care insurance, etc.
  6. Copy of your financial Power of Attorney documents with instructions on where the originals are held.
  7. List of assets and liabilities and instructions on where the deed for your home, car title and other property documents are located.

Additional information

  1. Instructions on pet care and guardianship, as well as their veterinary contact information, pet insurance, etc.
  2. List of monthly household bills and instructions — electricity and gas, internet, water and sewerage, real estate taxes, maintenance providers (garden service, trash, etc.).

Wellness-Focused End-of-Life Care at Our Hospice in South Jersey

At The Shores, a part of the well-known United Methodist Communities non-profit organization in New Jersey, we offer a compassionate, professional hospice neighborhoods in the Jersey Shore area called Bridges. In this program, we focus on creating a nurturing and comforting environment for patients and their loved ones through customized care programs and compassionate support. To find out more about our hospice in the Jersey Shore area, please visit our website at or contact us today and organize your visit.

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