Senior Living Care Blog

Sara Niemiec

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Festive And Fun Drinks To Spice Up The Fall Season

Posted by Sara Niemiec on Oct 10, 2019 8:00:00 AM

 

The fall season has just begun and while some are out picking pumpkins and watching the leaves change colors, others are cozying up by the fire and sipping on a pumpkin spice latte. One of the many things that individuals look forward to in the fall is all the festive and tasty drinks that accompany it. Below are scrumptious coffee, cocktail and downright delicious recipes to try this autumn. Let’s get to the kitchen!

 

Hot Cranberry Tea

A person picking cranberries off a tree. Hot cranberry tea is a festive and fun drink to spice up the fall season

Time to make: 1 hour and 30 minutes, yields 14 servings

 

Ingredients

3 ½ quarts water

1 (12 ounce) package cranberries

2 cups white sugar

2 oranges, juiced

2 lemons, juiced

12 whole cloves

2 cinnamon sticks

 

Directions

In a large pot, combine the water and cranberries. Bring the water to a boil, reduce the heat, and let the reduction sit for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, add the remaining ingredients. Cover the tea and steep for one hour.

 

Homemade Apple Cider 

Two glasses of homemade apple cider. Apple cider is a festive and fun drink to spice up the fall season

Time to make: 3 hours and 20 minutes, yields 16 servings

 

Ingredients

10 apples, quartered

¾ cup white sugar

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

1 tablespoon ground allspice

 

Directions

Place the quartered apples in a large pot and add enough water so the apples are covered by a minimum of 2 inches. Add the remaining ingredients. Boil the mixture, uncovered, for an hour. Cover the pot, reduce the heat, and simmer for 2 more hours. Strain the combined mixture through a mesh sieve. Remove the discarded solids. Drain the cider once more through a cheesecloth lined sieve. After filtering, refrigerate the cider until cold. The cider can be frozen for a longer storage time.

 

Salted Caramel Mocha Latte

Two mocha lattes. A caramel mocha latte is a festive and fun drink to spice up the fall season

Time to make: 5 mins, yields 1 serving

 

Ingredients

1 cup fat free milk

2 tablespoons caramel i cream topping + extra

2 tablespoon hot chocolate mix (or chocolate syrup)

Pinch of sea salt

½ cup strong coffee

Cool whip

1 teaspoon turbinado sugar

1 teaspoon sea salt

 

Directions

Mix together the sea salt and turbinado sugar in a bowl. Set the mixture to the side. Heat the fat free milk, caramel topping, hot chocolate mix/chocolate syrup and a pinch of sea salt. Stop before the mixture begins to boil. Pour this mixture into the blender and blend until it is frothy. Pour the mixture into your favorite fall mug! Carefully pour your hot or cold coffee into one side of the blended milk mixture. Top with a heaping amount of whipped cream and the remaining caramel topping. Sprinkle your creating with the sugar and sea salt you originally mixed.

 

Pear Mimosa

Pears from the market in wooden baskets. Pear mimosas are festive and fun drinks to spice up the fall season

Time to make: 5 minutes, yields 4 servings

 

Ingredients

¾ cup pear nectar

1 bottle of champagne

Pear slices

 

Directions

In champagne flutes, divide the pear nectar. Top the glasses with champagne. Garnish with fresh pear slices.

 

Mulled Wine

A glass of mulled wine. Mulled wine is a festive and fun drink to spice up the fall season

Time to make: 10 mins, yields 6 servings

 

Ingredients

1 (750 ml) bottle of your favorite red wine

1 orange, sliced into rounds, save extra for a sweet garnish

6 whole cloves

3 cinnamon sticks, save extra for garnish

3 star anise

¼ cup of honey

½ cup of brandy

 

Directions

In a medium saucepan, combine all of the ingredients over a medium heat. Bring the ingredients to a simmer. Do not let the ingredients boil. Reduce the simmer to a medium-low heat. Simmer delicately over a low heat for 10 minutes. Serve this delicious drink warm and garnish with your choice of cinnamon sticks, orange slices or both. The more the merrier!

 

Moving Forward

There you have it! A short and sweet collection of tasty drinks that will keep you warm and toasty while carving pumpkins, watching a spooky movie, or hanging out with friends. If you are interested in senior living and learning about where there are always activities, a chance to make new friends, and even enjoy a weekly happy hour with those friends, contact Landmark Senior Livings assisted living facility in Beverly. We’d love to show you around and welcome you home.

 

Learn More Here!

 

Topics: Senior Activities

How To Adapt Your Home For Old Age

Posted by Sara Niemiec on Oct 8, 2019 8:00:00 AM

 

For many of us, our greatest fear when it comes to getting older is not being able to stay in our own homes and live independently. We dread the thought of having to go and live with our children or in a home so that someone else can look after us. This is the main reason why many people are carrying out adaptations to their homes in preparation for the years to come. Indeed, studies show that a fifth of people in their sixties start to make adaptations to their home in preparation for older age so that they can maintain their independence for as long as possible. We'll take a look at some adaptations that could help keep you going for years to come.

 

1. Look At Your Bathroom

A bathroom. One way to adapt your home for old age is to install a walk in bathtub so the bathroom is safer.

Lack of mobility and balance, which go hand in hand with old age, can make it more and more difficult to wash and bathe oneself. There are changes that you can make in the bathroom, however, to make it all easier. You could, for instance, have a bath lift installed to help you get in and out of the bathtub if you don't want to give up the luxury of relaxing in a hot tub. Alternatively, you could invest in a walk-in shower that doesn't require you to step over anything in order to get into it, if you prefer. Putting down some good anti-slip mats could also be important if your floor does get slippery. Installing grab rails could also help if you find yourself struggling with getting into an upright position.

 

2. Install A Medical Alert System

One of the greatest fears that seniors have is that they might fall down or become ill and not be able to call for help. A medical alert system could help allay those fears because it can provide you with the reassurance that an alarm will be raised should something happen. With most systems, all you have to do is wear a bracelet or a box attached to a necklace on your body, and you will have the back-up of being able to contact someone 24/7 at the push of a button.

 

3. Move Things Downstairs

A set of stairs. Stairs can be dangerous for older adults so individuals could move things downstairs in order to adapt your home for old age

As we age, using the stairs becomes increasingly more difficult. Now might be the time to start thinking about moving as much downstairs as you can, to prevent you having to climb the stairs often during the day. If you don't have a downstairs toilet, for instance, consider having one installed. You could even consider turning one of your downstairs rooms into a bedroom if you are really struggling with the stairs in your home.

 

4. Look For Trip Hazards

It is a sad fact that as we age, we are more likely to fall or trip over objects. Our eyesight might not be what it used to be. Sometimes we just don't see things and it is just the case that we find it more difficult to maintain balance. Have a good look around your home and identify any trip or fall hazards. The best thing that you can do is remove them to leave your home free of clutter. You should also rearrange furniture to ensure that you have a clear path throughout your home.

 

5. Install New Lighting

A lamp. One way to adaopt your home for old age is to install new lighting

It's important that your home is well-lit as you age because it helps you to see any potential hazards. Sadly, gone are the days when you can turn off the light switch and hop into bed in the dark. Consider having automatic lighting installed - it could work via remote control or by a motion sensor. That way, you will be able to see exactly where you are going when you get into and out of bed.

 

All of these tips can help keep you or your loved one safe at home. As we age, it is important to keep our loved ones safe while allowing them to keep their independence. When it is too hard to live at home, assisted living facilities in Hobbs New Mexico are always a great option. With three delicious meals, constant activities and around the clock nursing, your loved one is always in good hands. To learn more about Beverly respite care or assisted living, contact Landmark Senior Living today.

 

Learn More Here!

 

About The Author:

Paul Preston is a freelance writer from Redbridge, London. He juggles work and University duties as he is trying to finish his Masters degree in Big Data Management. During his spare time, he helps his brother in creating online applications. 

 

Topics: Senior Tips

Difference Between Assisted Living & Respite Care

Posted by Sara Niemiec on Oct 2, 2019 8:00:00 AM

 

When your parents enter their golden years, you need to accept the reality of residential care whether that’s respite care, assisted living or memory care.

Just as it can be confusing for your loved one and they enter this new chapter of life, it can also be overwhelming when you’re confronted by a broad spectrum of unfamiliar care.

Which type of senior living community would make the best fit when you don’t know what you’re looking for?

Well, today we’ll clear up some of the differences between two of the primary forms of care offered for seniors:

  • Assisted Living
  • Respite Care

 

Although these different forms of senior care are very different, they’re commonly mixed up so we’ll break them down one by one starting with assisted living. What is it and why should you care?

 

What Is Assisted Living?

Two older men sitting outside of their assisted living facility enjoying a game of chess

As your parent advances in life, it’s only natural the day will come when they might need a little assistance with personal care.

Perhaps your loved one remains intensely independent and is in generally sound health but they need help with laundry, housekeeping and eating.

An assisted living program is ideal if your parent places a premium on their independence but they could use some assistance with day-to-day activities.

All the best programs will kick off with a full assessment so the level of care required can be established and fully personalized.

Private accommodations will give your parent the privacy they need while you’ll both be confident that the medical care in on hand around the clock.

If your loved one prefers to keep to themselves, respite care can be a sanctuary for them. If, on the other hand, they prefer more socializing and activities, they’ll be ample opportunity for that, too.

Help with nutrition is a valuable touch if your loved one is finding it tough to stay motivated with healthy food. Not only will your parent eat better, they’ll have much more free time at their disposal.

Unlike respite care, assisted living is normally an ongoing, permanent arrangement. Once someone enters assisted living, they’re far more likely to remain in residential care than to return to independent living.

Here are the primary benefits of an assisted living program at a glance:

 

Key Benefits of Assisted Living

  • Privacy and independence intact while support is readily available when required
  • Assistance with the management of medication to remove any worries
  • Social activities and companionship services to prevent loneliness and stimulate the mind
  • Help with a broad spread of personal care from cooking and cleaning to shopping and laundry
  • Access to a wide range of physical and occupational therapy

 

Maybe you’ve heard about respite care as well and you’re wondering if that might be more appropriate for your elderly parent.

Well, if you’re looking for a short-term care solution, it’s well worth exploring respite care.

 

What Is Respite Care?

Men sitting outside of their respite care facility enjoying nice conversation

Respite care is short-term care that can be required for any number of reasons.

Maybe your loved one has had an accident and temporarily needs more assistance than you can provide.

Perhaps they know the time is near for a move to a residential facility but they’d like to test the waters first.

Or it could be you or another caregiver who needs a break that brings respite care into the equation.

Whatever the needs, short-term residents can take full advantage of the facilities in the senior community from the self-contained accommodation through to a full roster of social activities.

Your loved one can get assistance in all aspects of day-to-living just like with an assisted living program. Transportation is provided to take the sting out of those appointments and errands. Your loved one can call for help with washing, laundry, dressing and toileting.

Since your loved one will be moving into a facility with qualified medical staff, you can be sure there will be no problems with medication. Also, if your parent happens to take a tumble or feels suddenly unwell it’s reassuring to have medical personnel ready to help.

So…

The key difference then between assisted living and respite care is purely in terms of duration. In most normal circumstances, a move to assisted living is permanent. Although you would expect to find a broadly similar level of care in place, respite care is short-term.

As you’d expect from any short-term pricing, you can expect to pay proportionally more for respite care than you would for the ongoing arrangement of assisted living.

Here’s a snapshot of the main reasons why respite care is a valuable offering:

 

Key Benefits of Respite Care

  • Temporary care works well after an accident or if you are unavailable to care for your loved one
  • Respite care can be a great way to try permanent residential care if your parent is still not sure about making the move
  • Works well if you or your loved one’s caregiver need a short break
  • Take advantage of all the social activities in place as well as the medical care on hand
  • Medication assistance and help in place in the event of sickness or falls

 

Verdict

Both assisted living and respite care programs allow your loved one to maintain their independence while benefiting from the sheltered and protective environment of a residential facility designed for seniors.

If you’re looking for permanent care, assisted living is the best fit.

For temporary care with all the advantages of assisted living, you should strongly consider respite care.

 

What To Do Next

If you feel your elderly loved one might benefit from an assisted living program or you could use a break yourself and you’re interested in respite care, get in touch with our friendly team here at Landmark Senior Living.

Get in touch with us here any time and we can arrange for you to plan a tour when it’s most convenient. If, on the other hand, you need respite care in a hurry, let us know and we’ll do our very best to make that happen.

 

Learn More Here!

 

Topics: Assisted Living

What To Say To Parents When It's Time To Enter A Senior Community

Posted by Sara Niemiec on Sep 24, 2019 8:00:00 AM

 

Because you love your parents, you want what’s best for them, especially in a senior community. Your parents may want happiness, longevity of life and well-being for the entire family. As a responsible child, it's important to commit to those same values for your parents too.

 

At a certain age, your parent’s health may begin to deteriorate, and they may struggle to find the same joy they had in their earlier years. Many problems can arise, such as dangerous illnesses that can seriously impact a senior’s health that must be dealt with urgency and delicacy. Though this could be a difficult time for you, your parents and your family, there are ways to create a more comfortable process, one of which being a move to a senior community.

 

Beginning the conversation with your loved ones about the possibility of moving to a senior community can be difficult, but necessary. The discussion requires adequate and proper preparation before addressing the situation. With proper research, talking with your loved ones could offer assurance to both you and your parents. A few things to keep in mind as you prepare:

 

● Educate yourself on options, expenses and appropriate treatments for your parents.

● Ask the right questions to understand your parent’s situation and feelings regarding the possibility of a move.

 

If you’re worried about initial questions and conversation starters, here are some options you can use:

 

“How is it living at home alone? Do you still feel safe?”

“Do you feel lonely sometimes? Would you like to spend more time with people your own age?”

“How do you feel about driving? Would you like other options of mobility?”

“Is it ever hard to manage your finances and keep up with paying your bills?”

“Would you feel less stress if you didn’t have to worry about the house?”

 

After you’ve asked the right questions and understand your parent’s position on the matter, there are a few other considerations to take into account:

 

Plans For A Senior Community Should Be An Ongoing Discussion

An older man talking to his mother about moving into a senior community

In order to cut back on tension or possible conflict between the family’s and your parent’s desires, treat your conversations as an ongoing process. Though you may have done plenty of research to find the healthiest choice, they may not feel the same way. Many seniors have strong opinions on what they want to do with their time, and therefore, it’s important to consider their feelings in the decision; remember, it’s your parents that will have to make the move, make new friends, and change their lives around, so their feelings are important. Here’s an example of a start to a conversation that is not “ongoing,”

 

“We need to have a conversation right NOW!”

 

This may make your parents feel like you and your family are teaming up against them, and they may turn defensive. Instead, consider a similar, more passive approach:

 

“We want to make sure that you’re well taken care of and happy. However, we’re not sure how to do that unless we understand what you need…”

 

This is a simple yet direct way of starting an ongoing, non-aggressive talk about future plans with your parents, allowing both sides to feel comfortable and loved.

 

Talk About Options: Both Location And Payment

A man opening his wallet to pull out money to pay for a senior community

Because your loved ones may be living in their new location for the remainder of their lives, researching the right community or home is important. There are plenty of places that your parents can move to that are highly rated and a good fit. One main aspect you’ll want to understand is the difference between the various types of care, such as: home care, assisted living or hospice. Each have their pros and cons, so you’ll want to ensure you understand the needs and desires of your parents before choosing one.

 

As you go through the selection process, it may be helpful to include your parents in the research, depending on their eagerness to understand each aspect. The more you involve your parents, the more they feel cared for and therefore, may make the process easier and more straightforward.

 

Another aspect that is crucial to address (and sometimes the most uncomfortable) is finances. According to a Genworth 2018 survey, the costs of senior living communities can range anywhere from $1500 to over $8000 per month, making the decision on the location and services provided even more essential. Depending on your family’s funds or your parent’s retirement savings, financial decisions may need to be made prior to this discussion in order to help prepare for those expenses.

 

There are plenty of ways to prepare for the range of expenses you and your parents will need to cover. Start by calculating how much is covered under their current health insurance benefits. Once you recognize how insurance can help cover costs as your parents age, map out other ways to finance this life transition. One way to set yourself (and your parents) up for financial success is to plan ahead by saving money in advance. Given your busy schedule, you’ll be glad to know there are easy ways to do this, like going online and setting up an automatic savings account. Be sure to take care of this prior to your conversation though; doing so will allot you some time to save the amount of money needed to help pay for any incurred costs.

 

Your Impact On Those Closest To You

Though it may appear to be a stressful time, it’s also an exciting opportunity for both you and your parents as they move to a senior community. Remember to stay positive throughout your conversations, using words that are uplifting and enthusiastic. This will help ease the worry that may come as you have these ongoing discussions with your parents. Positivity in a time of opportunity can make a big difference and turn the anxiety into joy. These conversations are moments to take advantage of because they will show the love that you have for them.

 

Learn More Here!

 

Topics: Senior living community

Fight Aging With Success

Posted by Sara Niemiec on Sep 19, 2019 8:00:00 AM

 

Time waits for no one, but you can convince it to give you a break once in a while. We may not be able to stop or reverse the aging process, but there are a lot of ways we can delay it a little. Being kind to your body and mind can help you look and feel younger, allowing you to better enjoy your time.

 

In many cases, fighting the aging process involves following good old-fashioned common sense. Eating right, exercising and getting enough sleep each night can go a long way to improving your overall health and well-being. Yet, just as important as what you do is what you don’t. We’re always making choices that can make us look and feel older, such as going outside without sunscreen on a sunny day.

 

Even though we may not plan on spending all day soaking up rays, UV radiation can damage our skin. Anxiety and stress also have lasting impacts on your physical state, so it’s important to learn some relaxation techniques so you don’t wind up becoming your worst enemy.

 

For some more crucial do’s and don’ts when it comes to looking and feeling better no matter your age, see the accompanying checklist.

An infographic that describes aging with success

For more information about aging tips or senior living in Hobbs New Mexico, please reach out to the staff at Landmark Senior Living

 

Learn More Here!

 

Topics: Healthy Aging

How To Sleep Better As You Age

Posted by Sara Niemiec on Apr 23, 2019 11:00:00 AM
 

Getting to sleep better as you age is important for living a healthy and happy life. And insomnia is a problem that many suffer from and can impede your physical and psychological abilities and can lead to irritability and lack of motivation or energy. One aspect that needs to be considered when discussing healthy sleep cycles is age. As we age, it becomes more likely that we will deal with sleep problems.

 

According to the Handbook of Clinical Neurology, 40 to 50 percent of people age 60 and over report sleep disturbances. These complaints range from problems falling asleep, to difficulty with sleep maintenance, nightmare awakenings, and early morning awakenings. For severe cases, insomnia may be present. Insomnia is defined as the inability to initiate or maintain sleep, this results in daytime consequences.

 

Despite these problems, there are ways that seniors can change their daytime habits to help induce sleep during the nighttime. For example, by exercising, limiting alcohol use, and more, older adults can fall asleep quicker, sleep longer, and have better quality of sleep. Similarly, some seniors may elect to use medication to help with sleep problems like insomnia. This is always an option but can lead to some issues such as dependence or health problems like dizziness.

 

 

Insomnia and Seniors

The senior population is growing and as baby boomers continue to age, it will soon become one for the largest populations. And, as the population grows, more attentions is being placed to be sure that the quality of life for older individuals is maintained during the aging process. Insomnia is one condition that can cause quality of life problems.

 

According to the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, insomnia is commonly seen in older adults and it is associated with multiple consequences related to health. It is often under-recognized, under-diagnosed, under-treated in the general population and is a common complaint among older adults. Insomnia is correlated with a greater risk for falls, a major problem for seniors that leads to hundreds of thousands of hospitalizations each year.

 

Insomnia Treatment

The goal of insomnia treatment is to improve sleeping time and inception. Generally, medication is prescribed to help with sleep maintenance and problems. Normally, for geriatric patients, the lowest effective dose is recommended paired with short-term treatment, gradual discontinuation. It should be noted that while there are over-the-counter medications to treat insomnia and other sleep problems, they provide only short-term help and can lead to side effects that affect health such as dizziness and difficulty with balance. Some of these medications can also be habit-forming. While medication can be an effective form of treatment, some professionals will go a different route.

 

 

Sleeping Tips

A clock next to a cup of tea and a book on a bed. There are many ways to try to sleep better as you age.

There are a number of methods that you can enact in order to manage and improve sleep problems. One of the easiest ways to improve sleep ability and quality is to limit use of television and computer before bedtime. Getting off these devices at least one hour before bed can be effective in boosting melatonin levels, the hormone associated with inducing sleep. Too much screen time can cause this natural hormone to run low in the body. Similarly, getting out in the daylight can help with sleeping patterns. Aim to get at least two hours of sunlight a day, because sunlight is known to help regulate melatonin.

 

Along with getting sunlight and limiting technology time before bed, there are a number of other methods to improve sleep. For example short naps can be helpful, but just be sure to take naps early in the day. Taking a nap too close to your nighttime sleep will impede your ability to fall asleep. Some other tips for improving your ability to fall asleep include:

 

Eating Healthy

A bowl of mixed vegetables. Eating healthy will help you sleep better as you age.

Keeping a healthy diet is one of the best things that you can do to maintain and improve your physical and mental health. Specifically, limiting caffeine intake and avoiding big meals before bedtime are two daytime habits that you should incorporate to fall asleep faster and sleep more soundly. Overall, though, getting a diet that is low in sugar and high in nutrients while also watching calories is one of the simplest ways to maintain a healthy diet.

 

Avoid Alcohol

There is an association insomnia and alcohol use disorder. While there is some evidence that shows lower doses of alcohol may increase total sleep time, higher doses lead to short-term withdrawal and sleep disruption. While many people use alcohol as a sleep aid, it may be impeding their ability to get a proper night’s sleep. It is best to not look to the bottle when you are faced with sleep problems such as insomnia.

 

Exercise 

A woman walking up the stairs. Exercise is a great way to help sleep better as you age

Along with eating properly, exercise is a great way to promote mental and physical healthy. While there still needs to be more research on the effects that exercise has on chronic insomnia. Of the few studies that have been conducted, evidence shows that exercises significantly improves sleep of people who are struggling with chronic insomnia. One study found that after 4 to 24 weeks of exercise, adults with insomnia fell asleep more quickly, slept longer, and had better sleep quality than before they began exercising.

 

 

Now What?

Sleep disturbances are a common problem among the elderly community. Insomnia is a severe form of a sleep disturbance defined as the inability to initiate sleep. If this is the case for you or your loved one, it can lead to many daytime consequences. Luckily there are a few strategies that you can use to help your body induce sleep at night and sleep better as you age. For example, creating a healthy diet plan, exercising, and limiting time with devices, can all be effective in improving sleep time and quality.

If the problem becomes severe enough, insomnia may cause some to need to enlist the help of others. If this is the case, assisted living facilities can give your loved one the care that they may need. Landmark Senior Living is one facility that can help your loved one stay healthy and happy at this point in their life. If you want to learn more about what Landmark has to offer, visit our website and schedule a complimentary walkthrough of one of our facilities.

 

 

Learn More Here!

 

 

Topics: Senior Health

Don't Let Healthcare Cost Your Retirement

Posted by Sara Niemiec on Oct 17, 2018 11:00:00 AM
 

The problem that many seniors run into when planning for their retirement is that people don’t take into account their healthcare and medical costs. Healthcare and medical bills can account for a large portion of your retirement finances, with the average healthcare cost for couples over the age of 61 being nearly $241,000. No one thinks to include these expenses into their long-term retirement planning, but the truth is that old age can bring a host of impairments that may require extensive medical costs to cover.

 

Approaching Your Retirement

An elderly couple holding hands and walking together outside.

The problem with properly planning your retirement funds is that many of us underestimate the severity of illnesses or other health concerns that may cause us to retire earlier than expected or that seriously impact our daily ability to function. It becomes even more of a pressing concern when you consider that retiring earlier means less time to plan and less time to save. Most people don’t realize that major diagnoses such as cancer, or a serious injury could result in severe financial distress.

 

Another major component of retirement to consider is also your employee benefits package. Many people retire and wish that they had negotiated better severance and retirement packages before quitting. By utilizing a holistic approach to retirement planning, you can accurately account for how much money you have and what you will need to retire comfortably. In addition to your assets, pensions, and retirement savings, you should include the following costs when calculating your retirement plan.

 

  • The cost of senior living facilities, retirement communities, home care, palliative care, and other living costs should you be unable to live independently.
  • Emergency funds should be stashed away but easily accessible and easy to liquidate.
  • The costs of replacing employee benefits and medical device costs such as eyeglasses, walkers, wheelchairs, hearing aids, and more.
  • Estate planning and wills that identify beneficiaries and powers of attorney.
  • A legacy plan that protects your savings
  • Health insurance and life insurance policies

 

Adult children of baby boomers and soon-to-be retirees should take these considerations into account when having a conversation with their parents about retirement. Make sure to get a handle on what their budget, healthcare costs, prescription costs, and what plans they are currently under. These kinds of conversations may be difficult to bring up but they save money and time in the long run.

 

 

Financial Health and Personal Health

Financial health and personal health are closely intertwined. This is because individuals who invest in their futures and save money are more likely to be the same people who are proactive about leading an active and healthy lifestyle. People who have good financial health and good financial habits are more likely to lead happier, healthier, and successful lives, at least according to the Journal of Psychological Sciences.

 

“Existing retirement-contribution patterns and future health improvements are highly correlated. Employees who save for their future by contributing to a 401(k) show improvements in their abnormal blood test results and health behaviors approximately 27% more often than non-contributors.”

 

Eating healthy can not only impact your body but also help your pocketbook as well. It’s not difficult math. Eating out can be expensive and eating fast food can be costly for your physical health. Preparing your own healthy meals helps cut down on spending and cut down on unneeded carbs and transfat. According to the USDA, the average family of four eating moderately will spend about $245 per week on food, which is half of what they’d spend eating at a restaurant. Studies also find that people who eat out on a regular basis are also less likely to plan grocery store trips or plan retirement savings strategies. By budgeting your food spending, setting goals, and cutting down on unneeded junk food, you can get the best of all worlds.

 

Regular exercise can also help you save money. Studies show that regular exercise promotes endorphin production and increased energy levels. When your body and brain are in a better state from exercise, they are more prone to making good decisions related to financial planning and managing your portfolio. Exercising helps you connect to your body and improve your sense of well being, making it easier to reach goals. For example, the same mechanisms that lead us to stress-eating could just as easily lead us to stress spending. Exercise helps clear your mind and leads you to make informed decisions.

 

Exercise and eating healthy can also extend your working ability. If you remain healthy, you have the opportunity to remain in the workforce for a longer time. Today’s retirement is simply not the same as it was 20 years ago. Seniors and all adults need to be proactive about planning for retirement, with diligent investing and a careful balancing of finances. According to the Families and Work Institute, many people today work past the age of 65 in order to earn enough money to retire more comfortably or to maintain a sense of purpose. Earning additional income in your retirement years can help you build more retirement savings, interact socially, and learn new skills.

 

 

Ways to Improve Your Money and Finances

As stated above, a healthy lifestyle can positively impact your financial outlook as well as your lifespan. It seems simple, but planning to be healthy is the same as planning to be wealthy. It takes saving, putting in work, and careful monitoring at all times. Here are some concrete ways you can start to save money while improving your physical and mental health.

  • Set a spending goal for the week and see if you can stay under it
  • Limit eating out to once per week
  • Limit all fast food and buy groceries to prepare your own food
  • Get regular exercise in the morning
  • Get around eight hours of sleep per night

 

 

Next Steps

There they are; the top ways to save money and improve your physical health. Are you looking into a senior living facility for your family member that will support their senior health without breaking the bank? Landmark Senior Living is available today to take you and your loved one for a tour at one of our seven premier and affordable communities. Call now for more information!

 

Learn More

 

 

Topics: Senior Tips

New Alzheimer's Law passes in Massachusetts

Posted by Sara Niemiec on Aug 31, 2018 11:00:00 AM
 

A new law passed in August 14th in Massachusetts is going to change the way that healthcare professionals treat Alzheimer’s disease. The law, which was officially signed by Governor Charlie Baker, is called the Mass Alzheimer’s and Dementia Act. Proponents of the act at the Alzheimer’s Association call Alzheimer’s the most under-recognized threat to public health in the 21st century, costing the nation upwards of $277 billion annually in Medicare, Medicaid, and other care-giving expenses.

A gavel. A new law in Massachusetts was recently passed regarding Alzheimer's.

The biggest organizations that have been pushing the bill are the LeadingAge Massachusetts and Massachusetts Senior Care Association, who united to advocate for the passage H. 4116. The act will require all physicians, assistants, and registered nurses who treat adults to attend a one-time training event in diagnosing Alzheimer’s disease for treating and caring for people with dementia. The law also mandates that doctors who diagnose Alzheimer’s disease must also inform the patient’s family or legal representative about the diagnosis and provide information and resources to help them plan care-giving services.

 

Caseworkers who work in protective services must also undergo the one-time training to help them recognize the symptoms of dementia and Alzheimer’s such as cognitive impairments and misunderstandings that can help expedite the screening and diagnoses processes. Under the law, all hospitals in the state must develop and implement programs for recognizing and treating dementia by October of 2021. In addition, the state department in charge of health and human services must asses all current state programs dealing with Alzheimer’s and determine if these facilities are meeting the required standards.

 

The state will create a new 17 member that will advise state officials and health care providers in how they can implement and manage proper memory care. The council is scheduled to meet on a quarterly basis and produce annual reports that give updates to the plan as well as evaluate all state-funding and research dedicated to the endeavor.

 

Says Governor Baker:

 

“Alzheimer's impacts us all in some way — as a taxpayer, loved one, caregiver, or by developing the disease ourselves. Regardless of socioeconomic standing, geographic location or political beliefs, we should all be concerned about the public health threat posed by Alzheimer's.”

 

How Does Alzheimer’s Disease Work?

Before symptoms begin to arrive, there are changes that take place in the brain on a microscopic level. The brain has over 100 billion neurons connecting to one another. Each cluster of cells is responsible for different cognitive functions. For example, some specialize in thinking, learning, memory, sight, hearing, smelling, and muscle movement. Scientists believe that Alzheimers works by preventing parts of these neurons from functioning correctly. Think of it like a factory that is continually running but gradually wears down over time and in some cases completely breaks down. As some factories (neurons) break down, this affects the functioning of related factories, and the disease spreads.

Scientists attribute this break down to the buildup of plaques and tangles between cells, which are made up of protein fragments and twisted protein fibers. Although all of us develop these buildups, people with Alzheimer's and related forms of dementia develop these in greater quantities and in predictable patterns. This blockage results in the death and spread of nerve cells resulting in memory failure, personality changes, and other symptoms.

 

Diagnosing Alzheimer's

The most surefire way of accurately diagnosing Alzheimer’s disease is to consult a medical professional. There is no specialty for diagnosing this disease but is recommended to seek out specialists in the field of the mind, such as Neurologists, Psychiatrists, or Psychologists. These professionals will ask for a history of medical conditions and to list any symptoms the patient suspects may be correlated. From there they will conduct an in-person analysis to formulate a diagnosis. The most common signs to look for are:

  • Memory Loss That Interrupts Daily Life
  • Challenges With Reasoning and Problem Solving
  • Confusion With Time and Place
  • Problems Speaking Coherently
  • Misplacing Items Often
  • Sudden Changes in Mood or Personality
  • Poor Judgement

 

With early detection, you can seek out treatment options, such as finding an assisted living facility that offers memory care. You can also explore other treatment options that may provide some relief of symptoms. In order to continue living independently, you may also want to consider an independent living facility or a home care worker

 

Next Steps

If your loved one is in need of more care and assistance for their daily lives than you are capable of providing, it may be time to start searching for new options. You may feel as though a nursing home is your safest bet, but the truth is that assisted living communities have advanced quickly in recent years along with access to high-quality healthcare options. Nowadays, you don't have to settle between medical services and comfort. Assisted living communities at Landmark Senior Living provide a range of care services along with amenities, daily programs and activities, and transportation services at your loved one’s disposal.

 

Learn More Here! 

 

 

Topics: Alzheimers

Skilled Nursing vs. Assisted Living: What You Need To Know:

Posted by Sara Niemiec on Jun 18, 2018 11:00:00 AM
 

There comes a point in many children's lives where they have to decide what the next steps are for their parent or loved one. Even if they need around the clock care, or are interested in living in a senior community full of activity, it can be tough to determine what the best type of care is for your loved ones. All your life, they have taken care of you, and now the tables have turned. They are trusting you to help them make the decision to move into a new home that will provide them with the best care while they enjoy their future years. While there are many different types of cares options for seniors, two of the most prevalent are skilled nursing and assisted living. What is the difference between these two types of care? Keep reading to learn about both of these types of care for our family members that we love.

 

Skilled Nursing Vs. Assisted Living:

 

Assisted living facilities and skilled nursing facilities are similar but have one distinct characteristic. The level of care is the differentiating factor between these types of facilities providing assistance and treatment for our loved ones. Unlike assisted living that has staff members that can help individuals with day to day tasks, while still maintaining a sense of independence, skilled nursing facilities have round the clock care, 24/7.

If you are looking into possible options for yourself or a loved one, begin by doing research online. You can use resources online to search for and compare different options. You can check out the website eldercare.gov, or contact your state’s Aging Services Division. This agency is dedicated to providing assistance for the elderly in their region through community-based services and programs.

 

Skilled Nursing:

Individuals who enter a skilled nursing facility or a program that offers skilled nursing tend to have medical issues that need 24/7 care or have a debilitating condition that requires constant attention. Stays in facilities that provide skilled nursing can range in time depending on the necessities of a patient. An individual who is recovering from surgery that entails constant wound care may only stay for a week or two, compared to an individual who has a medical condition/disease that requires continuous attention and dependence on others. Many individuals have peace of mind knowing that if they need medical care or help no matter what day or time it is, they will always have it. Many individuals may also want to stay in their home instead of moving to a skilled nursing facility; skilled nurses can be hired to be with your loved one in the comfort of their own home if that is a route they wish to pursue.

This type of care is known as in-home care. As its name suggests, in-home care takes place at the patient’s residence or shared living space. For many seniors, in-home care is provided by a relative, loved one, friend, or neighbor who drops by often or lives in the same residence. However, many also enlist the help of professional nurses to offer assistance with cooking, walking, grocery shopping, and bathing. These types of caregivers often require training to be legally allowed to administer this kind of care. If you’re looking for a skilled nursing facility or in-home caregiver you should first visit eldercare.gov. This tool is an excellent source for finding elder services hosted by the Department of Health and Human Services.

 Medical supplies-Skilled nursing facilities and assisted living facilities both provide nursing care for those in need.

 

Assisted Living:

Assisted living facilities provide expert services based on the changing needs of residents within the community. Individuals who may require extra assistance while maintaining a sense of independence are the types of individuals who enter into assisted living communities. Staff can provide assistance in the comfort and privacy of residents own apartments, while still allowing them to engage in their ADLs (activities of daily life). While assisted living communities do not have nurses on staff 24/7, they still have a high level of involvement to ensure the safety and well-being of residents. Some of the ways the staff maintain well-being are as follows:

  • Personal care services-Assistance with bathing, dressing, toileting, and grooming.
  • Self-administered medication monitoring.
  • Personal laundry services and extra housekeeping.
  • Companionship services.
  • Three daily safety checks.
  • Escorts to meals.
  • Podiatry.
  • Pharmacy delivery.
  • Physical and occupational therapy.
  • Laboratory services.
  • Visiting nurse agencies.
  • Reiki, aromatherapy and tai chi classes.
  • Full salon and barber services.

 

There comes a time in life when we have to determine what the next best steps are for our loved ones. Regardless if they would feel happier in a skilled nursing facility or assisted living community, both settings are beneficial to those in need. Some seniors may prefer an assisted living community where they still have a sense of independence while having temporary assistance when they need it. Others may prefer having constant care 24/7, even if it is only for a short duration of time.

Another option that you may need to consider is finding a rehabilitative care facility. This kind of opportunity is best for any senior who needs help regaining motor control or maintaining physical health. Certain types of treatment centers can help with stroke recovery, orthopedic care, and various kinds of therapy, such as physical, occupational, or speech therapy.

Other facilities offer specialized memory care services for those suffering from various forms of dementia. Dementia can range from mild to severe. This disease requires specialized care that caters to the specific needs of the individual that is affected. Alzheimer’s, the most common form of dementia, demands assistance for helping with intellectual, social, memory, problem-solving, and communication difficulties. Read our article on early signs of dementia to learn more about the disease and its various manifestations.

 

Next Steps

When you or your loved ones are ready to take the next step and find a senior living community that's right for them, look no further. Landmark Senior Living offers assisted living, independent living, memory care and more. At Landmark, you are ensuring that your loved ones are in the best hands for the care they need.

 

 Learn More Here

 

 

Topics: Assisted Living

Top Aging & Retirement Songs

Posted by Sara Niemiec on Mar 27, 2018 10:00:00 AM
 

Not every great song is about romantic love or love gone wrong-some retirement songs are great for those looking for direction in their life. Some of the best songs of all time are about the wisdom that comes with aging and looking back on life with joy, wonder, and even regret. Read the 5 great songs about growing older to see if one of them resonates with you. Maybe one of your favorites made the list!

 

Aging and Retirement Songs to Listen to Now! 

Half of a record-Listening to retirement songs can help get individuals excited for the next chapter in lifeFleetwood Mac

"Landslide"

 

I took my love, I took it down

I climbed a mountain and I turned around

And I saw my reflection in the snow-covered hills

'Till the landslide brought me down

 

Oh, mirror in the sky, what is love?

Can the child within my heart rise above?

Can I sail through the changing ocean tides?

Can I handle the seasons of my life?

 

Well, I've been afraid of changing

'Cause I've built my life around you

But time makes you bolder

Even children get older

And I'm getting older too

 

Well, I've been afraid of changing

'Cause I've built my life around you

But time makes you bolder

Even children get older

And I'm getting older too

Oh, I'm getting older too

 

Oh, take my love, take it down

Oh, climb a mountain and turn around

And if you see my reflection in the snow-covered hills

Well the landslide will bring it down

And if you see my reflection in the snow-covered hills

Well the landslide will bring it down, oh oh

The landslide will bring it down

 

Five For Fighting

"100 Years"

 

I'm 15 for a moment

Caught in between 10 and 20

And I'm just dreaming

Counting the ways to where you are

 

I'm 22 for a moment

And she feels better than ever

And we're on fire

Making our way back from Mars

 

15 there's still time for you

Time to buy and time to lose

15 there's never a wish better than this

When you only got a hundred years to live

 

I'm 33 for a moment

I'm still the man, but you see I'm a "they"

A kid on the way, babe

A family on my mind

 

I'm 45 for a moment

The sea is high

And I'm heading into a crisis

Chasing the years of my life

 

15 there's still time for you

Time to buy and time to lose yourself

Within a morning star

 

15 I'm all right with you

15 there's never a wish better than this

When you only got a hundred years to live

 

Half time goes by

Suddenly you’re wise

Another blink of an eye

67 is gone

The sun is getting high

We're moving on

 

I'm 99 for a moment

And dying for just another moment

And I'm just dreaming

Counting the ways to where you are

 

15 there's still time for you

22 I feel her too

33 you’re on your way

Every day's a new day

 

15 there's still time for you

Time to buy and time to choose

Hey 15 there's never a wish better than this

When you only got a hundred years to live

 

John Lennon

"Grow Old With Me"

 

Grow old along with me

The best is yet to be

When our time has come

We will be as one

God bless our love

God bless our love

 

Grow old along with me

Two branches of one tree

Face the setting sun

When the day is done

God bless our love

God bless our love

 

Spending our lives together

Man and wife together

World without end

World without end

 

Grow old along with me

Whatever fate decrees

We will see it through

For our love is true

God bless our love

God bless our love

 

George Jones 

"I Don't Need Your Rockin' Chair"

 

[Chorus:]

I don't need your rockin' chair

Your Geritol or your Medicare

Well I still got Neon in my veins

This grey hair don't mean a thing

I do my rockin' on the stage

You can't put this possum in a cage

My body's old but it ain't impaired

Well I don't need your rockin' chair

 

I ain't ready for the junkyard yet

Cause I still feel like a new corvette

It might take a little longer but I'll get there

Well I don't need your rockin' chair

 

[Chorus:]

I don't need your rockin' chair

Your Geritol or your Medicare

Well I still got Neon in my veins

This grey hair don't mean a thing

I do my rockin' on the stage

You can't put this possum in a cage

My body's old but it ain't impaired

Well I don't need this rockin' chair

 

Retirement don't fit in my plans

You can keep your seat I'm a gonna stand

An Eskimo needs a Fridgedaire

Like I need your rockin' chair

 

[Chorus:]

I don't need your rockin' chair

Your Geritol or your Medicare

Well I still got Neon in my veins

This grey hair don't mean a thing

I do my rockin' on the stage

You can't put this possum in a cage

My body's old but it ain't impaired

Well I don't need your rockin' chair

 

My body's old but it ain't impaired

Well I don't need your rockin' chair... Uh Huh...

 

Music is a wonderful way to enjoy life and our moments we experience. Even though retirement songs are uncommon when senior living communities are not, they allow us to reflect on the great times in our life before moving into the next chapter. Moving towards the next chapter, like entering a senior living community can be extremely exciting. Are you looking for a retirement community? Landmark Senior Living has seven premier locations that can accommodate any budget or lifestyle. Call us today to find out more!

 

Learn More Here

 

Topics: aging

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