As the Vice President of Resident Care for The Arbor Company, Marsha is responsible for overseeing quality improvement programs that enhance care delivery and service to our residents and their families.
Assisted Living is a wonderful option for seniors who are seeking a residence with medical professionals nearby, along with neighbors to visit with and healthy meals only steps away from their apartments. However, some seniors shy away from assisted living communities, choosing instead to stay at home for as long as possible. While aging in place at home can be a comfortable choice, there are situations when staying at home is simply not a realistic — or safe — option.
Looking after a parent with dementia can be emotionally draining to say the least, so it’s critical you get all the support and guidance you can muster. At the top of list is making sure a dementia care plan is in place (preferably while the dementia is still in its early stage) – it can mean a much smoother ride for you and your parent.
When it comes to the senior in your life, never underestimate the importance of water to their health. Dehydration is one of the top 10 most frequent diagnoses responsible for hospitalization, a condition that can have serious, even life-threatening consequences. For instance, dehydration has been associated with increased mortality rates among hospitalized older adults and can precipitate emergency hospitalization and increase the risk of repeated hospital visits, according to the Hydration for Health Initiative.
There’s no denying water’s importance to the human body. It flushes toxins out of organs, carries nutrients to cells, hydrates blood and tissues, lubricates joints and regulates temperature. When someone takes in less water than the amount they lose through urination, perspiration or respiration, they become dehydrated. This might not be a big deal in a young person, but a senior who develops dehydration could potentially end up with a host of health problems, such as urinary tract infections, kidney stones, a compromised immune system or digestive problems.
While primary care physicians and other general practitioners are well-loved members of your medical team, it is wise to choose a doctor with a senior speciality as you begin to age past 55. Geriatricians, or doctors who specialize in senior care and issues, are an important part of healthy aging. These doctors see only aging adults and have an acute understanding of the aging process and conditions that may arise. Geriatricians can recognize medication complications and are aware of preventative care screenings and recommendations for aging adults; more so, typically, than a primary care doctor.
Choosing a Geriatrician to guide you through your senior years is a good decision. However, how can you choose one that is right for you? Here are a few things to consider when starting your decision process.
If you find yourself with a loved one in a dementia care community, or are considering memory care as an option for your family, it can often feel like you are learning and navigating an entirely new world.
Certainly, you are thrust into an industry full of jargon like “validation therapy” and “ADLs”, as well as new experiences like the care plan meeting. But what exactly is the point of a dementia care plan anyway? We have pooled our experience to give you the quick explanation of why your loved one has, and needs, a care plan, and why this should be an important part of dementia care even if your family elects to care for your loved one at home.
Dementia can be a terrifying diagnosis, especially when you do not know what to expect. Dementia, however, does not have to be a dark and mysterious force haunting every second of your loved one’s life. There’s still plenty of joy to be found after a dementia diagnosis. Having the right medical information can help you or your loved one plan for the future, choose palliative care options, and pursue the right treatment.
With 7.7 million new cases of dementia each year, it is important that memory care communities—typically assisted living communities with the capability of caring for seniors with memory loss—stay ahead of the curve in providing cutting edge treatment that will lead to healthier and happier residents.
Dementia brings with it more than just memory loss: decreased judgment, increased depression, and poor nutrition are just a few obstacles that memory care communities must contend with in order to give residents the best quality of life possible. By choosing a memory care community, families of those living with dementia are making a decision to increase their loved one’s odds of having friends, hobbies, and meaningful moments.