Monthly Archives: December 2018

Try These 5 Enjoyable Activities for Dementia Patients

Dec18-Blog-4-604x704.jpg

Everyone has the need to connect with other human beings, which is what makes our relationships so important. Dementia patients have the same need to connect, but this condition can make it more challenging to do so.

Here are some great activities recommended by the team at our  Tapestries Memory Care, that can help you bond with your loved one:

  1. Photo albums. While short-term memory does deteriorate with these conditions, long-term memories remain strong and particularly powerful. Looking through photo albums together is a great way to share memories and even learn new things about your loved one, so take one from your own childhood or theirs when you visit.
  2. Memory packages. Another way to trigger memories and share stories is through special memory packages. Scent is particularly well-connected to our memories. Favorite perfumes and aftershaves, cookies and treats, and even clothes, help form a strong connection. You can also incorporate this into events, for example with a holiday season package of gingerbread, pine, candy canes, decorations and cards.
  3. Read together. Since it may be difficult for your loved one to focus on the task of reading for themselves, pick books they enjoy and spend an hour reading out a chapter to them. This works particularly well if you use a calm and slow tone, as it provides stimulation and helps concentration.
  4. Favorite entertainment. Again, this is best when it connects with your loved one’s past. A playlist of their favorite songs from growing up, the TV show they loved when they were younger or much-loved musicals can trigger a strong response. It’s easy to find a lot of these series, movies and songs on streaming services.
  5. Nature visits. A slow walk to look at the spring flowers, a drive through town to look at the snow and Christmas lights, or a visit with therapy animals all provide sensory stimulation and great enjoyment. This is also a good opportunity to invite along the grandkids!

Tapestries-Memory Care at The Jersey Shore

United Methodist Communities is no stranger to the care and treatment for adults with Alzheimer’s and Dementia diagnoses. In fact, in November of 2018, United Methodist Communities opened Tapestries-Memory Care at the Shores in Ocean City New Jersey. This specialized facility is designed for the unique concerns  and caregiving of those with all stages of dementia. It offers apartment style, supervised living in a beautiful Jersey Shore setting.

In October 2018, Tapestries became Comfort Matters® accredited. Internationally recognized, Comfort Matters® is a philosophy, care practice and an evidence-based program which offers holistic and integrated approaches to improve the quality of care and quality of life for persons experiencing Alzheimer’s and other dementias. United Methodist Communities at The Shores is one of the few facilities in the state of New Jersey to achieve the prestigious Comfort Matters® Accreditation.

To find out more about our Tapestries-Memory Care at The Shores, please visit our website at https://theshores.umcommunities.org and book your visit today.

Original content posted on https://umcommunities.org/blog/try-these-5-enjoyable-activities-for-dementia-patients/

Leave a comment

Filed under Memory Support Services

5 Tips for Making Festive Family Gatherings Comfortable for Elderly Loved Ones

Smiling young woman shaping dough

Hosting a family gathering is one of the best parts of the festive season and it’s a wonderful opportunity to get everyone together, young and old. When you’re hosting a family event and you’re inviting an elderly loved one, there are a few things you can do to make them feel extra welcome and comfortable.

Here are some tips from our senior home care services team:

  1. Check your home for tripping hazards. Falls are the number one risk to senior health, so it’s important to take a look around your home and minimize any fall risks before their visit. This includes making sure that area rugs are taped down and have non-slip backing (or are removed).
    Allow for uncluttered floor space with wide pathways for traffic. Rearrange furniture to make movement easy (especially for walkers and walking sticks). This doesn’t have to apply to your whole home, just the entertainment area and bathroom.
  2. Make them part of the preparation. Simple tasks will keep your loved one engaged and part of the activities, so set aside some tasks that they may enjoy — it’s also nice to feel useful and wanted! Folding napkins, rolling dough, arranging flowers or placing centerpieces are all fun and safe.
  3. Include some favorites. Does your loved one have a favorite festive activity, love a certain Christmas album or holiday food? Including it in your family event is a great way to show them that you care and have considered them on this special day.
  4. Keep noise reasonable. While noise is a part of any family event, it can be difficult for seniors with hearing problems or dementia to fully enjoy the festivities. You can be merry, but remember to keep music volume down low and sit your loved one away from speakers and close to people they like to talk to.
  5. Take time over arrangements. When planning your event, talk to your loved one about who will be there and what you have planned, so that they can prepare themselves. Help them to select a comfortable holiday-appropriate outfit.
    Ensure that someone arrives early to pick them up from their home, and make sure there is safe transport back home or an established plan to stay overnight. Older adults take a little more time to process plans, so the more time to prepare, the better!

Senior Homecare Services – Companionship, Quality of Life and Independent Life Through Home Health Aide Services in New Jersey 

At United Methodist Communities in New Jersey, we understand the challenges of providing expert medical care and companionship to seniors while encouraging a full and independent life, which is why we’ve developed HomeWorks.

Through this program, trained and highly experienced staff can assist seniors and their families through comprehensive at homecare for the elderly. Each care plan is customized around the client’s exact needs, filling in with necessary assistance while allowing your loved one to remain in the comfort of their home.

For more information on our senior homecare services and home health aide services in New Jersey, please contact us today or visit our website at https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/senior-care-new-jersey/

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/5-tips-for-making-festive-family-gatherings-comfortable-for-elderly-loved-ones/

 

Leave a comment

Filed under At Home Care for the Elderly

Will Medicaid and/or Medicare Pay for Assisted Living? What if You Have No Money?

Document with title medicaid eligibility.

It’s no secret that growing older is getting more and more expensive, and a leading concern of seniors and their loved ones is how to pay for assisted living. Here are some insights from the team at our assisted living community in Sussex County, New Jersey, into whether or not Medicare or Medicaid can help make quality senior care more affordable.

Medicare – The Short-Term Care Support Option 

Medicare is national, government-funded health insurance plan that all Americans can utilize after their 65th birthday. It is available in several plans including Part A, Part B and Advantage, all offering different levels of coverage. However, it is designed to provide short-term support to seniors, such as a limited time stay in rehab after hospitalization or to cover tests, x-rays or medication prescribed by medical practitioners. As a result, it is not usually possible to use Medicare to cover assisted living, long-term nursing care, residential long-term care or hospice care.

Medicaid – Financial Support for Long-Term Care and Assisted Living 

Medicaid is funded in part by the federal government and in part by the state, so coverage is different from one state to another. It is an insurance program focused on providing financial coverage for long-term care and designed for low income families, but with New Jersey ranking as one of the most expensive states in the USA for assisted living, many families rely on Medicaid for essential financial support.

The program has expanded to try accommodating senior needs more effectively, and offers several options for seniors who meet the eligibility criteria.

These criteria includes the following:

  • You must be a USA citizen and resident of New Jersey.
  • You must be 65-years or older and must meet medical requirements for the level of care you are requesting.
  • As an income cap state, your income must be $2,250 or lower per month.

Regarding income caps, it’s advisable that you speak to a qualified elder law attorney as soon as possible to develop a strategy for your assets and income. Often, a “spend-down” strategy can be put in place to ensure that care is paid for through your current assets until eligibility criteria are met. There are also strategies that can help when a spouse needs assisted living, but their partner is still independent.

Speak to the Team at Our CCRC in Sussex County, New Jersey 

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. Founded on a philosophy of aging in place, our continuing care retirement community residents enjoy a less restrictive care model in which they do not have to move from their residential apartment to access additional services as their needs change.

Contact us to find out more about our CCRC and our assisted living in Sussex County, New Jersey, please visit our website at https://bristolglen.umcommunities.org/ and book your visit today.

Original content posted on https://umcommunities.org/blog/will-medicaid-and-or-medicare-pay-for-assisted-living-what-if-you-have-no-money/

Leave a comment

Filed under Continuing Care Retirement Community, Uncategorized

How is Alzheimer’s Disease Diagnosed?

 

Female doctor showing geometric shapes to elderly patient

Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the USA, with 5.7 million Americans living with the condition according to the latest Alzheimer’s Association research. Early and accurate diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease is critical to managing the health of a patient and could save up to $7.9 trillion in medical care and costs.

So, how is this disease diagnosed? Here are some insights from the experts at Tapestries Memory Care, UMC’s dedicated center of excellence for individuals suffering from all stages of Alzheimers and Dementia.

6 Early Symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease 

The first step in reaching an accurate diagnosis is for seniors and their families to be aware of the early symptoms of the condition, and to approach their medical practitioner with their concerns if the following is noticed:

  1. Difficulty remembering events.
  2. Social withdrawal, changes in mood and depression.
  3. Visual or spatial difficulties, misplacing items, and difficulty driving.
  4. Confusion regarding where they are, why they are in a specific location, or the passage of time.
  5. Difficulty finding the correct word or phrase to express themselves.
  6. Inability or difficulty in finishing daily tasks, solving problems, or making plans.

How Doctors Reach a Diagnosis for Alzheimer’s Disease 

This is a fairly complex process, as the doctor has to work through various tests and data to ensure an accurate diagnosis. This is because these symptoms may be the result of other medical conditions.

A doctor, neurologist or geriatrician will evaluate the patient’s:

  • Medical history, medication history and the symptoms being experienced. This is especially important if there is a family history of Alzheimer’s or dementia conditions.
  • Mood and personality changes, if any.
  • Memory and thinking abilities.
  • Difficulties in daily life and routines, if any.
  • Causes of the symptoms to see if they are linked to other conditions, medication interactions and other issues.

The doctor may then order tests to rule out other conditions or health issues, brain-imaging tests or even memory testing. A physical health examination will also be performed.

It’s understandable that people are reluctant to see their doctor if they experience worrying symptoms, but in reality, an early diagnosis gives you the best chance to manage your condition. It is also important to rule out other health conditions with similar symptoms, many of which are very treatable (including vitamin B-12 deficiencies and thyroid disorders) to ensure you get the right treatment.

Tapestries-Memory Care at The Jersey Shore

United Methodist Communities is no stranger to the care and treatment for adults with Alzheimer’s and Dementia diagnoses. In fact, in November of 2018, United Methodist Communities opened Tapestries-Memory Care at the Shores in Ocean City New Jersey. This specialized facility is designed for the unique concerns  and caregiving of those with all stages of dementia.

In October 2018, Tapestries became Comfort Matters® accredited. Internationally recognized, Comfort Matters® is a philosophy, care practice and an evidence-based program which offers holistic and integrated approaches to improve the quality of care and quality of life for persons experiencing Alzheimer’s and other dementias. United Methodist Communities at The Shores is one of the few facilities in the state of New Jersey to acheive the prestigious Comfort Matters® Accreditation.

To find out more about our Tapestries-Memory Care at The Shores, please visit our website athttps://theshores.umcommunities.org and book your visit today.

Original content posted on https://umcommunities.org/blog/how-is-alzheimers-disease-diagnosed/

Leave a comment

Filed under Health & Wellness

A Day in the Life of a Home Health Aide

Senior man and female carer enjoying coffee at home

The in-home senior care industry is booming and many people looking for rewarding careers in caregiving are considering becoming home health aides. But what is this role really all about? What could you expect on a typical day? Is it the right fit for you? Our senior independent home care specialists offer some insight that may help you determine the answers.

Typical Duties as a In Home Senior Care Provider 

As a home health aide for seniors, you’ll be assisting older adults with a wide range of daily activities. This type of care is tailored to the specific needs of the individual you’re caring for, so they may cover a wide range of activities, including:

  • Light housekeeping such as washing dishes, doing laundry, etc. Please note, however, that this role does not include performing heavy housework.
  • Organizing a client’s schedule (arranging doctors’ appointments, etc.).
  • Grocery shopping and meal preparation.
  • Arranging transportation for errands and appointments.
  • Personal hygiene (bathing, dressing and toileting, etc.).
  • Assistance with ambulation and feeding.
  • Communicating with family members about care and care requirements.
  • Providing companionship.

The extent to which a client requires these services depends on their health condition and specific needs.

Work Hours and Environment 

Work will primarily take place in the client’s home and the hours are determined by the tailored care they receive, including:

  • Respite care – Assisting family caregivers on a temporary basis, providing post-hospitalization care, etc.
  • Part-time care – Caregiving on a regular basis for a set number of hours per day or days per week.
  • Live-in care – Providing non-medical care on a full-time basis to seniors as an alternative to moving into assisted living communities.

United Methodist Communities Senior Independent Home Care – Where Compassion is Part of the Job 

Whether you need part-time residential in home senior care in NJ or need someone qualified and experienced to assist your loved one on a more permanent basis, our HomeWorks program is here to help. Our team is dedicated to playing a positive and compassionate role in the lives of seniors and are trained and selected for their ability to enhance the security, wellbeing and state-of-mind. Our staff are fully certified in New Jersey and have extensive senior care training and experience, so please feel free to ask for formal certification and references.

For more information on our home health aide services in NJ, please contact us today or visit our website at https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/home-health-aide-services/

Original content posted on https://homeworks.umcommunities.org/blog/a-day-in-the-life-of-a-home-health-aide/

Leave a comment

Filed under in-home senior care

Celebrating the Festive Season with Your Loved One in Hospice

Hands of an old woman and a young man. Caring for the elderly. close up

The holiday season can be especially difficult for families with a loved one in hospice, making a traditional time of celebration touched with sadness. However, there are still many ways — and reasons — to feel joy through the festive season.

Your Hospice Team is there to Help You Celebrate 

The central focus for hospice communities and their services is the comfort and wellbeing of their patients, and this makes the holiday season especially important to us. Our team is here to provide support to families as well as loved ones, and if you need some help bringing the spirit of the season to life, we’re here for that too! Here are some insights from the team at our hospice in South Jersey:

  • Bring the festive season to your loved one. Travel can be difficult, if not impossible for hospice residents, but that’s no reason not to miss out on a family occasion. Decorate your loved one’s room, bring in their favorite foods and home comforts and spend time together over your favorite holiday treats.
  • Focus on calm celebration to avoid overstimulation. A regular celebration is a lot for anyone to handle, and could very well be too much for your loved one to take in. This is especially true for Alzheimer’s and dementia patients. Rather than overturning their daily routine, try to incorporate special moments into their regular day. This will help make the time more enjoyable and rewarding for your loved one.
  • Don’t focus on a single day. Hospice patients experience both good and bad days, so don’t plan all your festivities for a single day or event. Instead, phone ahead and find out how your loved one is doing, then plan your day around the feedback you get.
    On a good day, it’s great to get the kids to come with and put up decorations, to plan a lunch or small outing — it takes a bit more preparation, but it’s worth it. Communicate with staff about visitors and plans that you have so that they can help out.
  • Create a special moment. The holidays are bittersweet for families whose loved ones are terminal, but it does make this time even more special in many ways. As sad as it may be that this could be their last holiday with you, it’s a good opportunity to make it truly special. Take lots of photos, build a scrapbook and take the time to slow down and spend quality time together. These are wonderful moments for meaningful traditions, so make the most of them.

Our Hospice in South Jersey is Here to Make the Holidays Special 

At The Shores, a part of the well-known United Methodist Communities non-profit organization in New Jersey, we offer compassionate, professional hospice care in the Jersey Shore area called Bridges. It focuses 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 Cape May County, please visit our website at https://theshores.umcommunities.org/hospice-care-nj/ or contact us today and organize your visit.

Original content posted on https://umcommunities.org/blog/celebrating-the-festive-season-with-your-loved-one-in-hospice/

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Hospice Care