Tag Archives: seniors

Three Types Of Beneficial Rehabilitation Therapy

Rehabilitation therapy comes in many forms, but the overall goal is to help people lead better lives. This is done by teaching ways to cope with a certain health situation, guide seniors through recovery or improve quality of life in one way or another. While some nursing homes only focus on long-term care as a way for children make sure their dependent parents are taken care of, these kinds of centers can lead to further dependency. This is why focusing on rehabilitation therapy is highly important, and why it is such a valued part of The Arthur Home.

Physical therapy

Old age is often associated with chronic conditions such as arthritis and osteoporosis, which can limit movement or make movement difficult or painful. Physical therapy is can greatly enhance physical capabilities to prevent falls. Also, regular physical therapy can help recovery time following events such as a stroke or in those with a history of heart disease. Physical therapy can also help curb stress levels. Physical therapy for elder relatives is highly beneficial for the whole family, allowing more opportunities for relatives to engage and interact with each other without worrying about pain or extra discomfort. Seniors will feel more included when they can be taken on family trips, creating lasting memories with parents and grandparents. They will even be able to have a better time with younger children, an activity that is much more physically demanding.

Speech therapy

Risks of a stroke are relatively high during senior years and in the case that it occurs, they are often likely to face speech impairments that will last longer than just a few months. This can lead to feelings of isolation because they can’t communicate with family, resulting in potential feelings of depression.

Speech therapy helps seniors re-learn oral skills and stimulates their memory so they can better remember words. The speech therapist engages in conversation with them to provide them with skills to better their social lives, as they may not have much as many speaking engagements as they did when they were younger. This is not only beneficial for them, but also their family since it allows members to engage in productive conversation with their elders.

Occupational Therapy

Old age often comes with a lessened ability to perform various daily tasks such as dressing and bathing themselves, which leads to a lifestyle with dependency or lack of self-care. This inability to perform daily tasks can also coincide with injury or episodes such as stroke or heart attack. Occupational therapy seeks to correct this by helping them live self-sufficiently. They start off with simple things like assisting with meals and putting on clothes, and moves on to encourage them to take on other activities with the help of modified tools like eating utensils and handles for bathtubs.

These can have a positive impact when seniors move in with family because they no longer need any help or require less assistance than before. Instead, they can spend more time interacting with relatives and living a more normal life with less dependency.

 

The Bottom Line

Rehabilitation therapy is surely a step in the right direction to help senior relatives live comfortably. With an improved quality of life and increased independence, it is easier for seniors to connect with their families by sharing experiences together that didn’t seem possible before therapy. Long-term care doesn’t have to be the immediate solution. Give The Arthur Home a call to find out options for you or a loved one.

Tips to ensure Seniors are prepared for winter

It’s starting to get cold outside! The leaves are almost done changing colors and the hats and scarves are coming out of storage. You know what that means: winter is on its way, and it’s time to make sure you’re ready! Winters in the Midwest can be unpredictable, but with proper preparation, you can be ready for anything Jack Frost throws your way.

Dress for warmth. It’s always a good idea to dress in multiple layers to prepare for any time of climate you may find yourself in. If you tend to get warm indoors but know you’ll be traveling around the neighborhood, wear a sweater or sweatshirt under your winter jacket so that you can take your jacket off inside. Make sure you wear winter-appropriate socks, and don’t forget to keep a hat, scarf and gloves with you whenever you’ll be outdoors. Your extremities (fingers and toes) will get cold the fastest, so keep them covered and you’ll keep in your body heat!

Keep it cozy inside. Your body temperature should never dip below 95 degrees Fahrenheit, so make sure to set your indoor temperature warm enough, usually no lower than 65 degrees, and keep some extra slippers and blankets around if you do catch a chill. If you decide to use a portable heater, find one with an auto-shut off function, keep it plugged directly into a wall outlet (not an extension cord), inspect the wiring to ensure it’s in good condition, and keep the heater clear of furniture, newspapers and other flammable material. Safety first!

Avoid slipping on ice. As your age increases, your risk for a fall increases as well. Don’t increase this risk by being risky around ice! Replace cane tips that are worn out to better assist walking. Make sure to always wear shoes with good traction and non-skid soles when you leave the house, and avoid walking around the house with dirty shoes. This could cause puddles and other slippery situations indoors, too. Be sure driveways and sidewalks are salted to help the ice melt quickly. Stay indoors until roads have been cleared to avoid dangerous travel situations. Here at Eberhardt Village and Arthur Home, we take care of snow removal and sidewalk maintenance for you, alleviating some of the winter stress.

Prepare for power outages. Winter storms, just like any other storm, can lead to power outages. Make sure you know exactly where flashlights and batteries are, along with a radio, and keep a clear path to these items to avoid tripping over things. Keep non-perishable food in the pantry in case the refrigerator doesn’t have power and perishable food spoils. Keep in mind, when the power goes out, the heat may also turn off. Keep plenty of layers on hand, including a hat, and try to move around to raise your body temperature and fight off the cold.

Keep your diet on track. With more time spent indoors and less time spent in the sun, nutritional deficits are common among seniors – especially Vitamin D deficiencies. Consume foods that are Vitamin D fortified, such as milk, grains and seafood options like tuna and salmon. Talk to your doctor if you feel you may need additional vitamins or supplements to keep you going through the cold months.

If you’re still driving, make sure your car is ready for winter, too. Winter driving is hazardous for any driver, but seniors who drive less often may have slower reflexes. Make sure to get regular servicing on your car to ensure all functions are working properly, including a fresh oil change, fully inflated tires, a working battery and winter windshield wipers. A good rule of thumb as far as keeping your gas tank full in the winter is to pretend like your “half-tank” line is the empty line. That way, you’ll never run out of gas and there will be enough gas to keep your lines from freezing. Investing in a AAA membership is an added safety measure in case of an emergency.

Most importantly, ask for help when you need it. If your driveway needs shoveling, call a friend or family member, or if you’re in our assisted living or independent living housing, let us know your sidewalk needs shoveling or salted. If you usually feel comfortable driving, but get nervous when the temperatures drop, arrange a ride to appointments or to the store, or take advantage of our shuttle services. Also, be sure you know how to use the emergency alert system in your dwelling in case of an emergency.

By keeping these safety tips and tricks in mind, spring will be here in the blink of an eye. If you feel like you may need some additional help or services this winter, don’t hesitate to contact us to set those in place or hear about your options. We would be happy to help!

Fall Activities for Seniors

Fall is officially among us! The change of season brings with it new sights, smells and activities. The leaves begin to bloom radiant colors of fiery oranges and reds. Apple cider is sold in every grocery store and local market. Hay bales, scarecrows and pumpkins begin to adorn front porches, and the smells of wood burning bonfires and spicy pumpkin pie linger in the crisp air. Turn off the air conditioner, open your windows and go outside. It’s time to take advantage of one of the most wonderful times of the year. Here is a list of fall-themed senior activities that will allow you to take full advantage of this stunning season.

 Apple Picking: This fall season take in the beauty that is the outdoors. Encounter the changing of the crisp autumn leaves, take in the brisk and refreshing air, and last, but certainly not least, pick some apples. Apples are one of the easiest, and tastiest fruits to pick. They’re juicy, don’t bruise easily, come in a variety of flavors, store well, and can be eaten fresh, cooked or canned. Apples also make many healthy and appetizing dishes. Apple crisp anyone?

www.bostonmagazine.com

Here are some tips to keep in mind prior to your picking. Apples ripen from the outside of the tree towards the center, so the apples on the outside of the tree are the most ripe. Picking apples can be quite easy. Roll the apple upwards off the branch and give a little twist. Don’t wash your apples until just before you start to use them to prevent spoilage. Have any leftover apples? Make a warm cup of apple cider on a cool day. Want to bring that wonderful spicy smell of apples into your home? Fill a saucepan half fullith water then add a sliced apple and some cinnamon sticks. Bring it to a boil then turn it to a slow simmer. Remember to add water periodically because it will boil away. Your home will smell like you’ve been baking apple pie all day.  

 Pumpkin Carving: How do you mend a broken jack-o-lantern? With a pumpkin patch! What can make sitting outside on the porch with a cup of your apple cider even better? Transforming a pumpkin into a spooktacular pumpkin. This fall get your creative juices flowing and get to carving. Hold a contest to see who can come up with the funniest, scariest, and most original pumpkin. This will make for an enjoyable arts and crafts day. Even try adding an LED candle inside your jack-o-lantern to make for a festive porch or window decoration for all to see. What’s even better? Arthur Home and Eberhardt Village offer a courtyard and a patio, the perfect place to put your carving skills to the test. The Great Pumpkin Patch in Arthur, Illinois is also a great place to pick up a pumpkin and take in the scenery.

www.inhabit.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Picnic: Winter is coming! Before it gets here, go on a picnic one last time while the weather permits. A picnic can be on the porch or deck, or going to the nearest park to find a beautiful shade tree. Another good idea is to do a potluck with the other residents. Whip up your favorite seasonal recipes and dishes. Bon appetite!

Pie Bake-Off: Attention pie bakers of all ages! Host a pie contest and enjoy the opportunity to taste and bake family recipes among your peers. Gather with friends and family, and residents of your senior community, in the kitchen and hold a pie bake-off. Bake one or two pies of your choosing. Wait until they have cooled and add vanilla bean ice cream and let the staff be the judges. Have them vote for their favorite pie. Whatever leftovers you have, serve them as dessert for everyone. It’s a win-win for all. Plus, who doesn’t love free pie? Let the games begin!

Fall Foliage Tour: The Arthur Home and Eberhardt Village assisted living center are both located in Illinois, the beautiful Midwest, which you can experience all four seasons. This is the perfect place to plan for a foliage tour to see the stunning multi-colored leaves before they fall from the trees. When you’re staying at Arthur Home or Eberhardt Village, you can enjoy their park and watch the beautiful leaves changing. Don’t forget to bring your own camera and capture memories from the event. Make it a contest by printing off a list of different types of trees and have everyone mark off the trees they see. Have a fun award for the person who identifies the most trees. Best to have them collect a leaf from each tree species to share.

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‘Fall’ in love with this holiday season and all the activities that are out there just waiting for you! Remember, it’s the small things in life that end up being the big moments.

The Grey Light: Seniors and Driving (How to Ensure You’re Driving Safely)

www.everydayhealth.com

Today, people are living longer, which means there are more seniors on the road than ever before. That is why it is important to know that as we age, so do our bodies. Your physical abilities can change, as well as decline, making it harder to operate a vehicle. It is important to assess these changes and understand how they can affect your driving. Here are some tips you can take to improve your driving to insure you stay safe on the road.

Get an Annual Eye Check: Having good vision is extremely important when it comes to driving and operating a motor vehicle. As we get older our eye sight can deteriorate and weaken. This can affect the way we drive. There are several steps you can take to ensure you are able to see well enough to drive, but most importantly, drive safely. Make sure you get your eye sight checked one to two times a month. Your eye doctor can help with treatment if you are having any vision problems. Check with them to see if you need a new contact or glasses prescription. It is important that you always wear corrective lenses while operating a vehicle. If you have night blindness or difficulty driving in the dark, try to limit your driving hours to daytime. Be sure to keep mirrors, headlights, and windshields clean. Another important factor, make sure you can see at least 10 feet above your car. If you can’t, you need to adjust your seat.

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What Medications Are You Taking?: It is important you know what medications you are taking and what side effects they may cause. Some medications can make you feel light-headed or sleepy. If you ever feel this way, do not drive. Read your medicine labels to see if any of them interfere with your driving or say, “Do not use while operating heavy machinery,” If this important warning is on one of your medications, do not drive. If you are unsure about a certain prescription or the side-effects, consult your doctor or the pharmacist.

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Check Your Hearing: What was that? It is important to be able to hear clearly while driving. You want to make sure you are able to hear if another passenger is honking their horn to prevent an accident or if an ambulance is coming up behind you, or a train is blowing it’s horn alerting drivers of its oncoming approach. Did you know at age 65, one out of three people has hearing loss? That is why it’s important to have your hearing checked every three years. It might be necessary for you to get hearing aids and wear them while you’re driving. If the radio or in car conversations impair your hearing, try to limit them as much as possible while driving. It’s important to also be careful of cracking windows while operating a vehicle because the wind can decline the efficiency of a hearing aid.

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Get Some Sleep: Sleep is essential for everyone, but it is a key factor to driving well. Make sure you are getting eight hours of sleep a night. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conservatively estimates that 100,000 police reported crashes, each year, are caused primarily by drowsy driving and this results in more than 1,550 deaths, 71,000 injuries and $12.5 billion in monetary losses. It is critical you consult your doctor about the effects your medications can have on sleep and driving. Bottom line, you are the one who needs to be aware of your own abilities. If you find yourself having trouble focusing while driving, or keeping your head up, constant yawning or rubbing your eyes, you must take the necessary cautions and not drive.

www.doctorshealthpress.com

Senior Couple Lying Asleep In Bed Together

Check Your Reaction Time: As we age our coordination, flexibility, and reaction declines. This can affect the way you drive, and not in a positive way. By having a slower reaction time, it can be more dangerous for driver’s when someone suddenly pulls out in front of them. However, there are a few steps you can take to increase reaction time and keep you safe while on the road. Make sure you leave enough space between you and the next car. It’s a good idea to stay the length of two car spaces between you and the person ahead of you. Try to avoid rush hour if possible. Find alternative routes with less traffic. If you do find yourself driving on the interstate or highway, stay in the right lane, as it is meant for slower traffic, but remember to watch for oncoming traffic.

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Driving is a pleasure everyone can understand and appreciate. It affords us freedom and mobility to go see our families and our friends. No one wants to be in an accident or cause one.  We all have loved ones on the road, so help keep them safe by being responsible and attentive to your own abilities of driving and help keep everyone safe on the road.

How Technology Has and Will Continue to Improve Seniors’ Lives

In the 40’s a phone was positioned on your kitchen wall, and your phone number was a few digits. You had ‘party lines’ meaning you could pick up the headpiece and hear that Susie Thompson down the road was talking to her best friend, Tilly. You would have to politely ask Susie if she could end her call so you could make a call. In the 60’s and 70’s the phone became a fashion piece in the home. Robin egg blue and harvest gold phones were situated in living rooms and dens all across the nation, and instead of rotary dials, there were push buttons that you pressed to make your call. No longer were you on a party line, but you had your phone line to yourself and could call anyone at any time without having to wait for your neighbor to get off the phone. Today our phones not only call someone, we now have the universe at our fingertips with the internet and web. At first, this was shocking, hard to understand, foreign and even those who were tech savvy were unsure what data was or even roaming charges. That has all changed!

Today 80% of seniors, 65 and older, own a phone. More than 60 percent own a computer or laptop.

Today, technology is benefiting and helping seniors by allowing them to be in touch with not only family and friends but also allowing them to engage in activities that are in the reach of their own hand. With iPhones and Androids, there are hundreds of helpful apps for everyday use, including topics on safety, learning, and so much more. The list below is just a sampling of some that help improve senior lives.

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Helpful Apps:

  1. EyeReader: An app that acts as a magnifying glass for reading, allowing you to see small fonts.

 

  1. Park ‘n’ Forget: Parking lots can be confusing and all of us know that feeling “where did I park?” Trying to locate your car out of a hundred others is no longer a problem with the Park ‘n’ Forget app. All you have to do is put in what floor, aisle, or section you’re on, and it creates a simple map that will easily lead you back. The app also monitors the amount of time you have spent in metered parking spots.

 

  1. Pillboxie: An app that easily helps you to remember your meds. The nice thing about the app is that it “visually” helps you remember. You can customize your pills by color and dragging and dropping them into the virtual pillbox. This will help you remember to take your medication at the scheduled time you set and also help you remember if you have taken that pill.

 

  1. Lumosity: Aging often affects our memory. This can frustrate many seniors who wish to stay mentally active. The app Lumosity is an easy way to keep your mind sharp which contains hundreds of puzzles and games. It was designed by neurologists and is proven to help memory recall and information retention.

 

  1. Facebook: Seniors can now stay in contact with their grandchildren, children, and friends. They can post what they are doing as well and have a sense of being in contact with loved ones by posting and messaging.

 

  1. Yesterday USA – Old Time Radio: Such a fun app if you are a fan of old time radio. This FREE app offers up radio shows from the 1920s, 30s, 40s and 50s.

 

Here is a sampling of technological advances that are focused on aging Americans needs.

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  1. Edema socks: based on a Danish company called Ohmatex, these socks can detect and notify the person wearing them of swollen feet and edema. Most of the time this is a sign of illness or other health problems.

 

  1. Shoes that prevent falls: researchers have concluded that vibrating the insoles in your shoes can improve balance and stability, making a fall 70 percent less likely. Although the study concluded these findings as useful, we will have to wait because no company is manufacturing them quite yet.

 

  1. Shirts that conduct CPR: The Massachusetts Institute of Technology is currently conducting a shirt that would be able to sense a heart attack and then administer CPR. It is estimated that this shirt won’t be completely ready for about 15 years, but shirts with sensors are already on the market.

 

  1. Self-driving cars: Most seniors fear the day when they won’t be able to drive anymore, losing a sense of their independence. However, Google is already testing self-driving cars, which use sensors to assess the environment around them and software to do the actual driving. The cars are still in the experimental stage, but it is predicted they will be available within a decade or so.

 

Sources:

http://www.pewinternet.org/fact-sheet/mobile/

http://money.usnews.com/money/personal-finance/retirement/articles/2015/12/09/7-tech-advances-that-will-change-seniors-lives