Resources for Families with Loved Ones Needing Care

recources-family-with-seniors-sizedCaring for an ailing loved one can be a daunting and overwhelming task, to say the least. Aside from the logistical arrangements of ensuring transportation to doctor’s appointments or rehabilitation activities, there is also the emotional roller coaster of sadness, frustration, tenderness, and nostalgia.

Rest assured, there are resources available to provide support for those caring for an older loved one. Here is a list of just a few of the top resources available to offer guidance, answers, and sometimes just a listening ear.

1) AARP

AARP is an invaluable resource for those entering their Golden Years and for those caring for an elderly loved one. Founded in 1958, AARP now lobbies in Washington on behalf of older Americans and has several affiliate organizations that serve a number of functions. The organization has an entire webpage dedicated to “family caregiving.” There are informational links on health, financial and legal concerns, and how to maintain balance when caring for a loved one, as well as a site with links to local resources, depending on where one is located. The AARP magazine and webpages are also a great resource for information on scams targeting older Americans, as well as up-to-the-minute coverage of political topics and news affecting this demographic.

2) Retirement Communities

Many retirement communities like those in San Diego, California, offer both luxury resort living accommodations and senior care services pertaining to injuries or memory loss. Facility websites include frequently asked questions sections with information not just on that particular facility, but also key things to consider when trying to decide if such a community is the right choice for the loved one in your care. Many facilities have a rich social media presence and are staffed with employees happy to answer questions and provide reassurance in times of uncertainty and decision-making.

3) Eldercare Directory

It’s interesting to note that each state in the U.S. has an Aging Services Division dedicated to providing home and community services to older Americans. These have the goal of allowing for maximum independence. Some offered might include help with household chores, meals delivered to one’s home, health aides, and even transportation to the grocery store and to medical appointments. Some agencies may also provide legal aid or access to mental healthcare and counseling.

4) PBS

It’s not just for Big Bird and Mister Rogers! The Public Broadcasting Service has long been known for national programming that ties in with local community outreach. PBS’s “Caring for Your Parents” programming and subsequent website pages offers a wealth of resources and support systems available, along with information straight from doctors and experts themselves.

 

Keyword: senior care services san diego

 

The Top Ways Retirement Communities Are Making the Golden Years Great Ones

the-top-ways-sizedRetirement communities in today’s society are designed to enhance the lives of their residents through rich community life, opportunities for maintained independence, and sometimes even luxury accommodations that call to mind five-star hotels and exotic resort destinations. Unlike the stigma of the past, these communities aren’t “facilities for the elderly.” They are neighborhoods, vibrant with bustling activity and overflowing with vitality.

Here are some of the top ways that today’s retirement communities are making the Golden Years great years for everyone.

1) Affordability

Yes, senior care facilities and communities in high-cost cities like San Diego can be expensive. But there are always options to defer some of the costs. Some communities offer move-in specials. Others offer access to specialists who are trained in seeking funding, grants, and financial assistance for eligible seniors. Some communities offer discounts for residents living with roommates, making resort-style living in apartments or even penthouse suites a feasible option that is sure to be enjoyable.

2) Food

Long-gone are the days of the stigma of cafeteria-type food. Seniors in resort retirement communities have access to both fine dining and casual dining, in both atmosphere design and in delicious cuisine. Meals are designed with nutritional needs in mind but prepared in a way that is both pleasing to the eye and to the palette. Many chefs will also prepare dishes of nostalgic or cultural significance that residents are sure to appreciate and enjoy. Further abandoning older models of cafeteria-type food, residents can also enjoy gourmet coffee at on-site coffee shops.

3) Recreation

An active lifestyle is a healthy lifestyle! Retirement communities like those in San Diego offer a wealth of options for residents to choose from when it comes to staying active and fit. An on-site golf course might be the perfect choice for getting out and enjoying the California sunshine and a little competitive energy. Water aerobics or swimming laps in the pool might be the best way to relax and burn some calories at the same time. Many facilities offer modified fitness classes and keep groomed walking trails on the property available to everyone.

4) The Arts

What is life without art? Some communities offer their residents access to an on-site art studio as an outlet for creative pursuits. Instrumental or singing musical groups are also formed for songbirds who have a flair for performance. Film buffs can enjoy classic and modern films in an on-site movie theater. Retirement communities also often employ an activities director who plans any number of theme events, parties, and celebrations that residents can enjoy together.

 

The Perks of a Community Home

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You have been working hard all your life.  You have sacrificed your time for your company to help it grow. You took care of your family as best you could, and you gladly did that.  You have contributed your fair share to society. Now that you are in your 60s, you would like to take it easy and why not? You have definitely earned it. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could spend your days doing only the things you like to do without having to worry about anything else, like cleaning the house, washing dishes after every meal and other such mundane household chores? Why not consider moving into a community home? It would still be like your home, but with hotel-like amenities as a bonus.

Simply Relax

When you live in your own house, there are tons of things you need to take care of. It simply never ends — from the day to day chores, buying groceries and cooking meals, to house repairs and maintenance. Running a household is not an easy task. Moving in a community home that gives senior care in San Diego automatically makes all these tasks disappear.  You can now spend your days simply relaxing and doing things that you want to do, not just things that you need to do.

Professional Help

Sure, you are capable of doing a lot of things by yourself but sometimes you just want things to be done a little bit better than you think you can.  What do you do then? You go to a professional. You want your steak cooked well done? You go to a chef.  You need a haircut? You go to a salon. Your coat needs to be cleaned? You go to a dry cleaner. Assisted living communities offer all these professional services and more, all under one roof.  And this is just the tip of the iceberg. There are additional services at a community home that gives senior care such as the one in San Diego that you can take advantage of as well. Be well-informed, and reap the benefits from living in San Diego where you can get senior care in a community home.

Plethora of Activities

Whatever your interest may be, there is surely something that you can do at the community home of your choice. You can take advantage of the different facilities available. Many have fitness equipment and wellness rooms. Some even have a pool. These centers also plan monthly activities which you can join, such as having guest speakers give talks about a wide range of topics. And if it’s just peace and quiet that you’re after, you can always find a private space in the home which you can claim as your very own.

What Should You Look For In A Doctor?

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Doctors aren’t the same for everyone, but for seniors, they are an important part of making sure you’re doing all you can to make sure that you stay happy and healthy. So, it’s a good idea to treat your doctor search like your search for senior care services in San Diego and keep the following traits in mind.

A True Professional

Studies show that when it comes to doctors, competence isn’t the biggest thing people are concerned about. Sounds, odd, doesn’t it? The reasoning is that competence is already assumed, especially in this age of online reviews and impressions. The biggest concern here is finding a doctor that is professional.

How does this manifest? Well, see if your potential doctor has the basics down, like being on time for appointments and respecting your questions, even if they need to be corrected or clarified. Another thing you want to see is if your advice given at first is generic and then catered to your medical history or the other way around. Ideally, you want someone who looks at your files prior to a visit.

Details can apply to the office and reception staff as well. Take a note of your initial impressions of a doctor’s practice, as generally, they’re going to be accurate.

Transparency

There’s nothing wrong with getting as much knowledge as possible about what goes into your health routine. When talking to potential doctors, take the time to break down the costs of medical procedures and what exactly causes them.  Transparency takes a variety of different forms, but ideally, you just want a doctor who is open with you when it comes to what they do and why.

A Good Listener

This may be a bit a cliché, but there is truly an art to being a good listener. Ideally, you want a doctor who not only hears your concerns through but is also willing to take what you’re saying and respond with actionable advice. This means not only being empathetic but also being able to break through the jargon and give proper explanations.

Is Supportive

In the same vein, you want a doctor who is sensitive to issues around medical needs. Some conditions may be difficult to talk about, but a good doctor should be able to offer support and some kind words, along with their knowledge and advice. Another sign to look for is if you’re allowed to bring help or a loved one to your appointment. Even if a doctor won’t be that shoulder to lean on, they should allow you to bring your own.

 

Interesting Trends For Senior Housing

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What’s one of the most important marketing demographics right now? The world may have its eyes on millennials, but often forgets seniors, which is quite a mistake. Not only are seniors one of the fastest-growing demographics in the country, but they also have more money on hand at an average, meaning that senior trends are trends the whole world should pay attention to. The same applies to senior care in San Diego or any other type of facilities. So, when you’re choosing that perfect match for your loved one, here are some things that a lot of facilities are doing to try and create the best experience possible.

An interesting trend follows the advent of technology. Most people may think about this in terms of medical technology, but there are other ways that technology can improve the senior living experience.

For a start, in some senior living communities, you’re seeing a more common use of technology like iPads. These come with preloaded software for seniors who want to check in without having to do things face to face, adding an extra layer of independence. In addition, new advances make things like medication management way easier, so everyone gets what they need at any given time. By adopting new technology, not only do senior care facilities make it easier for the seniors, but it also gives adult children peace of mind.

One trend that’s growing rapidly is home health care. In 2011, over 4.7 million people in the United States received some form of home health care. Note that this can mean a wide range of care, whether it’s getting care around the clock, or just having someone come over a few hours a week to take care of important errands. This makes a lot of sense, seeing as it requires less change for the senior. One thing that is making this more viable is something called remote monitoring.

How does remote monitoring work? Well, medical advances mean that there are more ways that a doctor or nurse can administer services at home, but, since they’re not always there, it needs to be clear when they are needed. In fact, changes mean that you can now remotely track when a senior eats or takes their medication.  Even blood pressure can be checked remotely.

Of course, there are still going to be ways that your traditional senior care facility still stands above, like coming up with recreational programs and being able to provide care around the clock. However, this trend is causing some facilities to change things up, like altering their units to resemble apartments. Home care’s rise is changing the whole industry.

Fun Ideas for Indoor Senior Activities

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Sometimes, the weather in National City is just not cooperating, so it may not be possible to go outside. This does not mean seniors cannot have fun when they stay indoors. There are a lot of fun activities that can still be done while waiting for the sky to clear up. Here are a few ideas to get things started.

1. Try a new game

New games are fun and exciting. They are interactive and they are enjoyable to learn. It is widely known that seniors should try new games and activities, every now and then, because it helps with memory care in National City. New games require one to learn new rules and create new strategies. There are definitely a ton of indoor games out there, and it is virtually impossible that they have all been played by any one person. See what games have not yet been played and try those games. If they are into computer games, teach them those: many computer games can also be a lot of fun. Even if it is just a single-player game, it can be something that can get them excited to play every day.

2. Learn technology

The older population has a love-hate relationship with technology. Sometimes, when you give them a tablet PC, they do not want to use it because they think that they might break it. However, once they start learning how to use it and knowing about all the enjoyable things they can do with it, they are hard to give up. With the tablet PC, teach them how they can take photos and do some fun editing, how they can stream a movie, and how they can play certain games. The process of learning these things can be very enjoyable to them.

3. Dance

Dancing is a great physical activity for everyone. Whether they are young or young at heart, dancing promotes good health while allowing people to show off their dance moves. Although some seniors may think dancing is overrated, it is not only about the dancing. There can be a small dance-off that promotes a friendly competition among them. This way, more people would want to participate because there can be some bragging rights to winning. Moreover, this promotes socializing with other people. Start this by asking them what their favorite music is. Whether it is a slow or fast song, any music is for dancing.

The amazing thing about having a list of indoor activities for seniors is that it can show that they can still do fun things even when they are not outside. Moreover, having a list gives them something to look forward to,  because they do not need to do all of the activities at once. When they find something that they truly enjoy, they can stick to that for a while. The activities can be mixed and matched to make things more interesting while staying indoors.

 

Strengthening Family Relationships

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Caring for elderly family members demands time and commitment. Some seniors also require specialized treatment and attention that family is not always able to provide. In those instances, an increasing number of families are turning to quality senior care services in the National City area. Close to home, and offering a level of care that everyone’s loved ones deserve, families are discovering the many benefits of independent and assisted living arrangements.

Being a family caregiver is challenging and frequently involves adopting or learning a new set of skills and responsibilities. Over 30 million adults in the United States have provided some kind unpaid care to a senior family member. As the nation’s population ages, that number is likely to increase.

Relying on senior care services can help alleviate some of the demands of being a caregiver. It has benefits for both parties and can result in a stronger and healthier partnership in care between parent and child or other family members.

A Labor of Love

Choosing to be a family caregiver entails a wide-range of responsibilities that not everyone is prepared for. Many adult children feel it is their obligation to care for a parent, but they soon discover that they have no idea what they are doing or how to handle difficult and delicate situations.

Family caregivers often find themselves in the midst of personal care crises, uncomfortable discussions, and other new territory like:

  • providing support during bathing and relief activities
  • cleaning up after episodes of incontinence
  • reacting emotionally to daily conflicts and behavior
  • not having the confidence to make decisions and choices
  • being frustrated and conflicted about how a family member is acting
  • not understanding or being unprepared for the complications associated with aging and health decline

Family caregivers are not professionals. They frequently lack any medical training or qualifications. In addition, they may not have ever faced a medical or personal family crisis and may not know how to act in an emergency. Providing care and support when they are confused or flustered may be especially difficult.

Relying on senior care services in the National City area can help alleviate some of the stress and anxiety that many family caregivers suffer from. Taking advantage of professional support and expert care frees up time and resources so that family can spend more quality time with their senior loved ones. Not being the primary or only caregiver alters the personal dynamics between family members. When caregivers have more time to devote to focusing on a senior family member and not their specific essential needs, they can enjoy a more fulfilling relationship.

 

Care Services One May Not Know About

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When it comes to senior care services in San Diego, most individuals know that there are different types of housings available, such as independent or assisted living, or nursing homes and memory care. However, they may not be aware of other kinds that may work for them as well.

Residential Care Homes

Residential care homes are the type of housing offering senior care services in San Diego for those individuals who need assistance with aspects such as dressing and bathing. Usually, in this sort of setup, there are private homes made for residents who live together with one another, while receiving care from caretakers that live with them. Nursing services and amenities differ greatly between communities, so one should make sure to ask about what is offered when touring the place. They are also known as adult family homes, board and care homes or group homes.

Respite Care

Another form of housing offering senior care services in San Diego is respite care, which is made to offer a temporary break for caregivers. In this case, a resident is allowed a short-term stay, while the community cares for their specific needs. The time a resident usually spends in such programs varies from a week to a month, and this is dependent on their situation. This type of care may also be used as a get-acquainted period for the individual, to see whether they like the community and would consider moving in for a longer term. They may also be called adult day care or short-term stay programs.

Home Care

For elderly who prefer to remain in their homes but can’t manage on their own, there is home care available, which offers assistance while keeping them independent. Usually, assistance is offered for activities like dressing, bathing, and meal preparation. Further help may be provided for making appointments, transportation, or paying bills. These services vary depending on the specific needs of the individual and range from once per week to 24 hours a day. One may also find these types of services as home health care, in-home personal care or home care aid.

Being aware of all the different types of services available for seniors is extremely important, as it makes the final decision of what to choose better informed. Helping a senior stay independent for as long as possible becomes easier and more manageable when one picks the right sort of help.

 

How to Be the Neighbor You’ve Always Wanted

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Your home is the place where you feel comfortable, you can relax, and it is your safe haven. Whether you live in a penthouse and receive senior care services in San Diego or a two-bedroom apartment, your neighbors can bring you immense joy and fulfillment in your life. However, to experience that happiness, you need to be a good neighbor. Here are a few ways to do just that.

Be Outgoing

This can be challenging for introverts and more reserved individuals, but step out of your comfort zone and meet your neighbors. Introduce yourself and be friendly. When you see them outside of your home, say hi, learn their names, get to know them. If you are familiar with your neighbors and those living around you, you’ll have an increased feeling of security in your own home.

Do Things Together

You don’t need to host large events to get to know your neighbors. Invite them to your home for dinner or ask if they’d like to join you at a nearby restaurant or attend a movie. Spend time on the golf course together or invite them to a community class. There are many opportunities and events where you can extend invitations. Just remember that if they say no, it is OK and you can always invite them at a later time.

Keep Your Surroundings Clean

One of the best and easiest ways to be a good neighbor is to be clean. Take ownership in your home and take care of it. Avoid littering and placing belongings outside your door. Do your part to keep your own home and the neighborhood presentable and well taken care of.

Be Mindful of Your Noise

Keep your noise levels to a minimum. Avoid pounding on walls, turning on loud music or letting your TV reach high volume levels. Do your part to keep your noise levels to a minimum and if you are worried about the amount of noise you are making, ask your neighbors if they can hear you. Be willing to take criticism if they do address a noise level issue with you. Don’t be easily offended and work to become a more quiet, courteous neighbor.

While living situations may differ, it is important that no matter what type of home you live in, you are mindful of those who live near you. Watch your noise levels, keep your surroundings clean, be friendly and even be willing to get to know your neighbors and establish friendships with them. The better neighbor you are, the better experience you will have living in your beautiful home.

5 Unique Ways to Get Your Body Moving

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The benefits of exercise are very clear — it helps you live a happier, healthier and more well-rounded life. Whether you are receiving senior care services in National City or spending time with friends and family, exercise and staying fit is not limited to running and biking. In fact, you can get your body moving and have fun doing it. Here are five unique ways to move and reap both mental and physical rewards.

Water Aerobics

Water is an exceptional way to exercise as it provides less stress to joints, helps with your flexibility and increases circulation. You can make these exercises as intense as you’d like and the resistance from the water helps you receive a full body workout.

Shopping

Shopping is an easy way to get in many miles, interact with others and give yourself a little fresh air. Grab a bunch of friends and make it a day where you each go to your favorite store. Even just spending 15 minutes in a store can give you hundreds of steps that you wouldn’t otherwise receive at home.

Fly Fishing

You can quickly receive vitamin D, enjoy some fresh air and spend time by the river with this outdoor activity. Fly fishing is an upper-body workout and can quickly burn dozens of calories whether you are standing, riding in a boat or kicking on a pontoon boat. Spending time in the outdoors also reaps many mental benefits including improving your creativity, helping you sleep better and easing anxiety and depression.

Tai Chi

Tai Chi is a form of martial arts that is slow and controlled. The activity does not involve high-intensity movements, unlike other forms of martial arts. There are numerous benefits to Tai Chi including:

  • Reduces stress
  • Improves flexibility
  • Improves cardiovascular health
  • Decreases blood pressure
  • Improves self-esteem
  •  Helps clear and mind
  • Helps control your thoughts and energy

Dance Classes

Participating in a dance class is an excellent way to move your body. There are several types of classes available for both yourself or for you and a partner. If you’d like to take a class with someone else, ballroom dance classes are an excellent way to strengthen your relationship and move your body. If you desire to take a dance class on your own, there are several options including ballet, jazz, clogging and even Zumba. You can also choose to do group dances like country line dancing or square dancing.

The opportunities to get up and get going are everywhere. The key is to find something that interests you, motivates you and makes you excited to get up every day. Remember, that you don’t have to do the same activity every single day. Mix it up and you’ll receive better overall physical and mental health benefits.