Monthly Archives: October 2019

Protecting Your Parents from Alzheimer’s Cure Scams

Protecting Your Parents from Alzheimer’s Cure Scams

An Alzheimer’s diagnosis can be frightening, not only for a parent but also for the family members. While doctors and specialists will do all that they can to manage symptoms and keep the patient healthy, some patients become desperate to try anything to cure or treat the disease.

Unfortunately, this makes them especially vulnerable to Alzheimer’s scams and their consequences, which could result in lost money and even compromised health. Here are some tips for protecting your elderly parents, from our assisted living team in Gloucester County:

  • Why Are Alzheimer’s Patients so Vulnerable? 

It’s important to understand that your mom or dad, a person who may usually be very rational, aware of scams and reasonable, can become more vulnerable after an Alzheimer’s diagnosis. There are several reasons for this.

  1. Firstly, there is currently no cure for this condition, which can make a patient feel desperate to try anything that may promise a cure.
  2. Secondly, Alzheimer’s changes the brain itself, which can reduce the ability to understand social cues, making a person less likely to realize they are being scammed.

These scams are incredibly dangerous, not only compromising a person’s financial situation, but potentially interacting harmfully with medications.

  • Here’s What You Can Do 

It’s important to remember that just because a product is sold in a pharmacy or drugstore, it doesn’t mean that it is actually able to deliver the results it promises on the label. The Federal Drug Administration and the Alzheimer’s Association recommend looking for the following warning signs that may indicate a scam:

  1. The product claims to reverse dementia symptoms;
  2. The product claims to be a cure, or to have cured a person with dementia or Alzheimer’s;
  3. The product claims to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s by a specific amount;
  4. It claims to be a scientific breakthrough; and/or
  5. It makes very broad claims that it helps with multiple serious health conditions and illnesses.

You can also check the FDA’s Flickr account where they publish a photostream of products that make unproven claims about Alzheimer’s. This makes it easy to check specific labeling and packaging.

The Alzheimer’s Association also has a list on its website of supplements and alternative therapies that are commonly marketed or recommended to patients that clarifies exactly what they can and can’t do, so you can make an informed purchasing decision.

Expert, Compassionate Care for Alzheimer’s Patients – Assisted Living in Gloucester County, NJ 

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, 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, and contact us today or book a personal tour.

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Flu Season Is On Its Way – 5 Tips for Helping Seniors Get Prepared

Home healthcare nurse giving injection to senior adult woman.

There are so many things to love about the winter season, from hot chocolate and cozy fires to quality time with friends and loved ones over the holidays. But, it does bring some challenges too, especially when it comes to senior health. Here are five tips to help your senior loved one prepare for winter, from our senior home health care services team in New Jersey:

  • Get Your Flu Vaccine–  As a person gets older, their immune system becomes weaker, especially if they are dealing with other health conditions. For this reason, the flu can be very dangerous to seniors, even resulting in a fatality. While it’s still early, ensure your loved one gets their flu vaccine. It’s a good idea for everyone who socializes with your loved one to get one, too.
  • Prepare for Storms– Snowstorms can leave seniors isolated and bound inside their homes; blackouts may even occur. Make sure they have a well-stocked kitchen (including water and medication), as well as a kit with a flashlight, spare batteries, gloves, and a warm blanket. You can also invest in an emergency response remote that allows your loved one to alert you or emergency services for help. Keep the telephone numbers of your loved ones’ neighbors in your phone. It will enable you to contact them to check in on your loved one if you’re unable to do so.
  • Eat Healthily– Good nutrition can be more difficult to manage during the winter months, but it’s critical for maintaining a healthy body and immune system. Assist your loved one by stocking up on frozen portions of homemade soups rich in vegetables, as well as winter fruit and vegetables (berries, citrus, and root vegetables).
  • Stay Active– Cold weather is no reason to become a couch potato and shouldn’t stop your loved one from getting healthy exercise! If it’s outdoor exercise, make sure your loved one’s shoes have non-slip tread and that they dress in plenty of layers. It’s also a good idea to encourage outdoor group activities in winter for safety. Many community groups offer year-round activities for seniors, including aqua aerobics and dance classes, so check out your local YMCA and community center.
  • Stay Social– In winter, seniors can be especially vulnerable to feelings of depression and isolation, so it’s important to keep an active social calendar. Join up with local seniors in the area who share similar interests in movie nights, a book club, dancing, and musical evenings, be sure to phone or visit more often, and assist with transportation where possible.

Affordable Companionship and Expert Care from Senior Home Health Care Services in NJ 

At United Methodist Communities, we offer high-quality senior independent home care at affordable rates, starting as low as $23 per hour, through our HomeWorks program. Our home health aides 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 in-home respite care services and senior home care services, please contact us today or visit our website at

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Financial Planning Considerations for Moving into a CCRC

CCRC retirement communities NJ

Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs) are designed to meet the health and lifestyle needs of seniors. Moving into a CCRC can be a great choice for retirees that want to downsize but stay independent, as these communities can scale up services as healthcare needs change. As with any big decision, there are serious financial questions to ask before you sign up. Here is some advice from our CCRC in Sussex County, New Jersey:

  • What Are Their Finances Like? 

When considering this move, many people look closely at their own finances, but forget to consider the financial health of the CCRC. It is important to look into their independently audited financial statements, as a CCRC filing for bankruptcy or being financially mismanaged can have devastating effects on the residents.
In the State of New Jersey, the Continuing Care Retirement Community Regulation and Financial Disclosure Act helps govern these regulations to ensure the CCRC is financially stable. CARF International is another useful resource for understanding CCRC finances as a consumer.

  • Get a Breakdown of All Fees and History of Past Fee Increases 

CCRCs offer a wide range of services that scale as a resident’s needs change, from housing fees to assisted living, so understanding the fees and contracts can be challenging. Before making any decisions, ask for a full breakdown of all fees as well as past increases, so you can get an understanding of current as well as future costs.
You should feel free to take these records as well as proposed contracts to your own financial planner or elder lawyer if you need additional assistance in understanding them and seeing if they fit in with your financial situation. Your financial planner can also help you build a strategy to include anticipated increases in costs.

  • Understanding Their Offering 

No two CCRCs are the same. And, while that’s wonderful in terms of the different lifestyle and care options open to seniors, it can make finding the right CCRC a bit overwhelming.
It’s best to compare communities in terms of what each will cost you using a thorough breakdown, so you know what is right for you. For example, it’s pointless paying for a CCRC that has an award-winning golf course if you don’t play the game. On the other hand, scalable healthcare services are a good idea because then you’ll only be paying for the services you actually use, when you need them.

Join an Independent Community at Our CCRC in Sussex County, New Jersey

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

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6 Essential Winter Safety Tips for Seniors

Teenager Helping his Grandfather

The outside temperatures are dropping quickly and that means a snowy, icy winter is on its way. As we get older, we become more susceptible to the challenges of this season, so it’s important for seniors to do a little extra preparation to stay safe and healthy over the winter. Here are six tips for older adults from our home care services team in New Jersey:

  • Reduce Winter Fall Risks – Falls are incredibly dangerous for seniors, and the ice and cold conditions of winter make falls during this season very common. Check your loved one’s winter wardrobe and make sure pants, skirts, and dresses are the right length. Check winter shoes to ensure that they have a sturdy tread. If your loved one likes wearing house slippers, these should be checked to make sure they have a stable rubber grip. If you live nearby, volunteer to clear their steps or pathway outside their home to get rid of ice, or ask a neighbor to assist.
  • Stock the Shelves and Medicine Cabinet – This is especially important when a storm is on its way. Pop over with enough food and essentials to last five to seven days, including fresh and canned goods, water, over-the-counter medicines, and prescription medication. Check that their emergency kit is stocked with a working flashlight and spare batteries, a whistle, and a warm blanket, and place it somewhere easy to reach.
  • Keep the House Warm – Seniors can lose body heat quickly and are less likely to sense that their body temperature is dropping. While many seniors are on a tight budget, it’s recommended that thermostats are set at 68 degrees throughout winter. You can help keep energy bills down with some small home improvement projects, including closing vents in unused rooms, sealing around windows and doors, and replacing your furnace filter at the start of every heating season. A dirty filter sends particles into the air that contribute to winter illness.
  • Banish the Space Heater – Space heaters are incredibly dangerous and expensive to run. So, it’s best to get rid of them. They are a leading cause of house fires, often caused by flammable furnishings, blankets or curtains that brush up against them unnoticed.
  • Check Carbon Monoxide Detectors– Seniors are especially vulnerable to carbon monoxide poisoning. Therefore, be sure to test detectors and make sure there’s a working detector on each floor of the home. Carbon monoxide,  a common byproduct of less efficient furnaces and heating systems, is called the silent killer because it is colorless, odorless, tasteless, and non-irritating. Optimally, hire a home heating professional to make an onsite service visit during the fall.
  • Stay in Touch– Whether you are close enough to visit or whether you call, it’s important to check in on a regular basis. Winter can be a time when many seniors are vulnerable to isolation and depression, so social contact can do a lot to keep seniors connected and active. It’s also a good idea to keep in contact with a few of your loved one’s neighbors so that they can also check in on occasion and make sure everything is alright.

For Peace of Mind, 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 our HomeWorks program. This program is dedicated to assisting seniors 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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How You Can Help Raise Breast Cancer Awareness This Month

Group of women in pink, breast cancer awareness ribbons

Every year, almost 253,000 women in the USA are diagnosed with breast cancer – one in every eight women. This devastating disease is the second most common cause of cancer deaths among women, affecting women of every age. Raising awareness is key to boosting early diagnosis, reducing deaths, and finding a cure. Here’s how you can participate, from our assisted living community in Camden County, NJ:

Breast Cancer Awareness Events in New Jersey for 2019

Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk and Run

Join with thousands of people across the USA for the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer event. Register with a team in your area and walk or run with family and friends to raise funds for the American Cancer Society, or donate directly to the cause. You can even buy a fabulous branded pink t-shirt for the event!
The event starts at 10am. So, just pick a venue and date near you:

Oct. 12 — MetLife Stadium (1 MetLife Stadium Drive, East Rutherford)

Oct. 13 — Prudential Center (25 Lafayette St., Newark)

Oct. 20 — Lincoln Park (West Side Avenue, Jersey City)

Oct. 20 — Century Office Campus (4 Century Drive, Parsippany)

Oct. 20 — Ocean and Arnold Avenues (Point Pleasant Beach)

Oct. 20 — Cooper River Park (1301 North Park Drive, Pennsauken)

Oct. 27 — Johnson Park (1030 River Road, Piscataway)

The Christina S. Walsh Breast Cancer Foundation’s 15th Annual Comedy Benefit

Have a laugh for a great cause at this fundraiser to support breast cancer patients! It’s on October 20 at the Stress Factory Comedy Club on 90 Church Street, New Brunswick.

20th Annual Komen CSNJ Golf for the Cure 

Get ready for a full day of activities on October 14 at the Metedeconk National Golf Club on 50 Hannah Hill Road, Jackson. Starting at 9am, there will be breakfast, a putting contest, and a cocktails and dinner program.

The 2019 Komen Central and South Jersey More Than Pink Walk

Hosted at Six Flags, this fun-filled and unique walk that is happening on November 3, is a huge fund-raiser for the community, funding life-saving programs for breast cancer education, screening, and treatment as well as supporting the Susan G. Komen® Research Grants Program in finding a cure.

Real Kids Wear Pink

October 25 is Real Kids Wear Pink Day! This is a fantastic way to get kids involved in this important cause. Get registered on the American Cancer Society events page for your area, start a fundraiser with your child’s sports teams, neighborhood, and school, and have fun! There’s even an app you can download from the site to make raising funds even easier.

Looking for Assisted Living in Camden County, NJ? Speak to Our Friendly Team 

Collingswood is part of the United Methodist Communities network of high-quality, non-profit assisted living communities. 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 our assisted living community in Camden County, NJ, please visit our website at or contact us today and organize your visit.

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5 Myths and Facts About Hospice Care

Caregiver, carer hand holding elder hand woman in hospice care. Philanthropy kindness to disabled concept.Public Service Recognition Week

There are so many myths and misunderstandings about hospice care and what it means, and that can lead to people missing out on essential care that provides comfort and dignity. Here are some common myths and facts about hospice care, from the team at our hospice in South Jersey:

Myth #1 – Hospice only provides 6 months of care, so you must delay it as long as possible 

This misunderstanding arises from the process that evaluates a patient’s need for hospice care. A patient will only be recommended for hospice when two doctors perform an evaluation and determine that the patient is terminal with a life expectancy of around six months or less. However, this is an estimate that is used to diagnose care needs going forward – it’s not an exact measurement. As long as a patient meets these criteria, hospice care is available.

Myth #2 –  Hospice care just provides pain medication

Pain management is a priority in hospice care in order to keep patients as comfortable as possible. However, it is not the only service that is provided. Modern hospice care is incredibly advanced and deals with a patient’s needs holistically, providing symptom management and therapy, as well as social, psychological, and spiritual support. This is extended to family and loved ones as well, providing a setting and support system that includes nurses and doctors, social workers, trained volunteers, and more.

Myth #3 – Hospice means giving up hope

Hospice is not the hopeless place that often exists in many people’s minds. Instead, it’s a place that redefines this stage of life, providing expert support and care that prioritizes dignity and wellbeing to the very end. Through our programs and team, we provide patients and families with a place to gather and enjoy quality time together, where families can be assured that their loved one’s every need is being met in a comfortable, welcoming setting, and where patients don’t have to fear being lonely, in pain or helpless.

Myth #4 – Staying at home is always better 

Caring for a loved one who is terminal can be incredibly challenging and emotionally stressful. At hospice, patients have a team of caregivers to ensure that needs are met, allowing family and loved ones to spend as much quality time together as possible. Hospice care doesn’t just involve symptom management. Trained doctors and nurses also monitor patients to ensure that any other minor health complications are treated early, ensuring that patients stay as healthy as possible and avoid traumatic hospitalizations.

Myth #5 – Hospice is Expensive

Hospice is actually funded through Medicare/Medicaid benefits. It’s unlimited in length, and most private insurance plans offer coverage for hospice as well. In most cases, coverage includes hospice care, visits from doctors and other medical professionals, medications related to the patient’s terminal condition, as well as any supplies and equipment they may need (for instance, an oxygen tank).

Have Any Questions? Speak to the Friendly Team 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 compassionate, professional hospice care 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 Cape May County, please visit our website at or contact us today and organize your visit.

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