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Here When You Need Us

ASC Referral Line: 888-996-8272

Keeping Knee and Hip Pain in Check

exercises for knee and hip painWhen you suffer from osteoarthritis (OA) in your knees or hips, you are probably used to dealing with daily pain. This pain can make it difficult to complete tasks, move about the house, or even simply get up out of your favorite chair. In many cases, an elective surgery like a knee or hip replacement becomes the only option to truly alleviate your pain.

However, before scheduling a surgery, you can take some preventive measures to help keep the knee pain or hip pain you’re experiencing daily in check.

Treatments for Knee Pain or Hip Pain

A study conducted by the Osteoarthritis Research Society International (OARSI) resulted in some recommendations for those who suffer from OA in the knee or hip. First, maintaining a healthy weight is key, as carrying too much body weight can result in extra pressure on the joints. For those with knee pain in particular, losing 5% of your total weight can be an effective treatment in alleviating some of the pain associated with OA.

One of the best things you can do to keep your joints healthy is to stay as active as possible. The study by the OARSI found that a variety of exercises, especially low impact exercises like strength training, yoga, stretching, and core exercises help with both pain and physical function of the joints. In fact, research published in the New England Journal of Medicine suggests that exercise and physical therapy are just as effective as surgery at relieving chronic knee pain or hip pain from arthritis.

Knee Exercises and Hip Exercises that Alleviate Pain

Learning how to strengthen and stretch key muscles, as well as ways to protect and take care of your joints, can help you prolong their health. Taking part in a physical therapy or exercise program can help postpone the need for a knee or hip replacement, especially if your OA is currently on the mild to moderate side. However, just make sure you’re avoiding activities that can further aggravate your joint pain.

Some of the best exercises for hip pain or knee pain include:

Core exercises

A strong core keeps your back in a neutral position and your hips and knees in the optimal position for movement without added stress on the joints. Plus, core exercises improve overall body strength, keep you balanced, and are key for pain management. Pilates, yoga, or working your abs with a fitness ball can all help improve your core strength.

Non-weight bearing exercises

High impact activities like running can be great for your health but hard on your joints. Instead, try water aerobics, swimming, or utilizing an elliptical machine or bicycling to get your heart rate up without putting more stress on your joints.

Strengthening exercises

Strength training and endurance exercises help provide relief from chronic pain, as even just a small change in your muscle mass can make a noticeable difference in your abilities. Strengthening exercises can increase bone density to help reduce the risk of fractures, especially in women age 50 to 70 years old.

Hip extensions

Hip extensions in particular are great for both knee pain and hip pain. These helpful exercises strengthen the glutes, which in turn alleviates the unnecessary stress on your hips, knees and ankles.

American Senior Communities provides physical therapy through our Moving Forward Rehabilitation program, available throughout our locations. Also, our New Energy Wellness program is a unique fitness program for seniors designed to promote an active lifestyle. Contact us today to request more information.

The Best Low Impact Exercises for Seniors

Best Low Impact Exercises for SeniorsIt’s recommended that to stay as physically healthy as possible, we need to get at least 150 minutes of exercise that elevates our heart rate every week. For seniors, or even those who are new to exercise, low impact workouts can be extremely beneficial to your health. Throughout a low impact workout, at least one foot remains on the floor at any given time, and these types of exercises are typically easier on the body. They’re a great way to get the blood flowing while reducing the risk of an injury.

The Benefits of a Low Impact Workout

If you’re just starting out with a new exercise program in an attempt to hit some of your New Year’s resolutions, a low impact workout is perfect for beginners. Low impact exercises are especially beneficial to those who suffer from problems or pain in their bones, joints or connective tissues, as they are not as hard on the body. However, while a low impact workout can be performed by those of all activity levels, those who are in better shape physically may find it a bit more difficult to reach their target heart zone (which is around 60 to 75 percent of your maximum heart rate).

Low impact exercises for seniors are especially helpful, as many seniors suffer from chronic conditions like osteoarthritis or osteoporosis that cause the pain in the bones and joints mentioned above. Plus, research shows that low impact activities actually can be just as effective as high-impact workouts like aerobics or running at lowering the risk of heart disease. Some low impact workouts can even assist in the healing and recovery of damaged joints.

A Few of the Best Low Impact Exercises

The term “low impact” should not be confused with “low intensity”. The goal is still to reach your target heart rate to get the maximum benefits out of your workout. As you begin to implement your workout goals, it’s important to choose exercises that you enjoy. This way, you may find you’re actually looking forward to your daily workout and will better stick to your routine.

Some great low impact exercises for seniors include:

Swimming

Swimming is also known as a “no-impact” workout, because the buoyancy of the water counteracts gravity. For those with back pain or joint pain, swimming or even water aerobics provides a great way to tone up and slim down.

Walking

Walking is an aerobic exercise that is gentle on the back and good for overall body conditioning. Lace up a good, supportive pair of walking shoes and hit the track for at least two to three miles to receive the most benefit.

Yoga

Yoga for seniors aids in flexibility, strength and balance and improves your core muscles, which are vital in stability and coordination. It involves a series of postures and breathing exercises that are sure to improve not only your physical fitness, but can also boost your mood.

Sitting exercises

For seniors with mobility issues, sitting or chair exercises are a great low impact workout that can build muscle, increase blood circulation and keep the joints lubricated and moving easier.

Strengthening exercises

Using weights, resistance bands or even large soup cans or water bottles during a workout presents a low impact way to increase your overall strength.

American Senior Communities’ New Energy Wellness program is a unique fitness program for seniors designed to promote an active lifestyle. Contact us today to request more information.

Keeping Loved Ones Safe Through the Winter

Winter Safety Tips for SeniorsIt’s the time of year when most of us enjoy snuggling up on the couch under a pile of blankets, with a steaming cup of cocoa in our hands while watching the snow fall. However, when the temperatures drop, the risk of health problems and injuries in our aging loved ones rises. This is why it’s so vital to have a plan ready to ensure your loved ones are staying healthy, happy and enjoying a high quality of life, no matter how frightening the winter weather can get.

Winter Safety Tips for Seniors

When aging loved ones still live at home, they can be susceptible to a variety of issues throughout the winter. From health problems like the flu, to slipping on wet floors or ice, or suffering from Seasonal Affective Disorder and social isolation, some seniors find getting through the winter months on their own to be extremely difficult.

Here are a few cold weather and home safety tips family caregivers can keep in mind until the weather breaks in the spring:

Schedule daily check-ins. Call your aging loved ones around the same time every day. This way, you will know to be concerned if they don’t answer the phone. If you live too far away to run over and check in on them when they miss a call, enlist a neighbor’s help.

Visit as often as possible. Although it can be difficult to visit aging loved ones if you don’t live nearby, it’s still important to visit as often as you can throughout the winter. An in-person visit allows you to make sure the furnace is working, that there is food in the refrigerator and to check on your loved one’s mood. Social isolation is a major concern at any time of the year, but even more so during the cold months when travelling may be difficult. Social isolation can lead to depression, a decline in physical health and an increased risk for cognitive decline.

Keep the sidewalks clear. The winter brings freezing temperatures, which means snow and ice can make even just walking to the mailbox a dangerous daily task. Falls are the number one cause of injury in seniors, leading to hip fractures or other broken bones. Plus, people over the age of 65 should generally leave the shoveling to a more able-bodied person, especially those with a history of high blood pressure or heart disease. If possible, hire someone who can shovel or plow the driveway and sidewalks at your loved one’s home, making sure salt or kitty litter is also thrown down to allow for better traction.

Arrange for transportation. Even if aging loved ones are still able to drive safely, winter driving tends to be a bit trickier for all drivers. Make sure your loved ones avoid driving in inclement weather, and also that they have an emergency kit in their cars that includes a snow shovel, blanket, water and flashlight. If possible, arrange for another mode of transportation so loved ones can get safely to doctor’s appointments or the grocery store regularly.

Discuss the option of an assisted living community. In an assisted living community, aging loved ones will have access to all they need, all on one convenient campus. From daily meals to on-site health services and wellness or fitness centers, loved ones won’t have to worry about venturing out into the cold or driving anywhere in hazardous conditions. It might be time to start the conversation about transitioning to the easier lifestyle today’s assisted living communities provide.

American Senior Communities has a variety of assisted living options available throughout our locations. Contact us today to request more information.

 

Common Orthopedic Surgeries for Seniors

common geriatric orthopedic surgeriesOne of the most common chronic conditions many of us face in our later years is osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is caused by inflammation in aging joints, and injury and obesity can also play a role. Eventually, this condition will cause cartilage tissue to break down and cause pain, swelling or deformity. Osteoarthritis leads to pain in your hips, knees, shoulder or spine that can be so severe it interrupts your daily life.

Physical therapy is often an option to help relieve some of the pain associated with osteoarthritis. However, when the condition is severe enough, many seniors choose to have elective orthopedic surgeries to allow them to get back to their active lifestyle.

Choosing to Have Geriatric Orthopedic Surgery

It’s estimated that by the year 2030, almost 3.4 million people in the United States will undergo knee replacement surgery, and around half a million people will get hip replacements. Although some seniors may be slightly apprehensive about choosing to have these types of orthopedic surgeries, studies show that in as little as a year after surgery, seniors can see significant improvements in in their osteoarthritis symptoms and enjoy a higher quality of life.

Some of the most common elective surgeries for seniors include:

Hip Replacement Surgery: This procedure involves the removal of the painful hip joint with arthritis and replacing it with an artificial joint made from plastic and metal components. Hip replacements were first performed in the early 1970s, and today, seniors can expect that their hip replacement will last at least 20 years.

Knee Replacement Surgery: Stiff, painful knees from osteoarthritis or a previous injury can make doing the simplest tasks extremely difficult, like going up a flight of stairs or even simply navigating through the grocery store. This type of geriatric orthopedic surgery also provides a dramatic improvement in mobility, even just one month post-surgery.

Shoulder Replacement Surgery: Shoulder disorders and pain affects around 20% of the elderly and is caused by conditions like rotator cuff tendinitis, rotator cuff tears and, of course, osteoarthritis. Like hip replacement or knee replacement surgery, total shoulder replacement surgery involves removing the damaged joint and replacing it with artificial parts. The goal is to not only alleviate pain, but also to improve range of motion and strength.

Spinal Surgery: Lower back pain due to osteoarthritis affects one out of ten people. Strenuous activities, overuse or degenerative vertebrae can also cause chronic lower back pain. The most common type of back surgery is called Spinal Fusion, in which the surgeon joins vertebrae together to restrict motion between the bones to limit the stretching of the nerves.

These types of elective orthopedic surgeries can drastically improve seniors’ daily lives. However, it’s important to note that it’s possible to avoid them altogether by leading a healthy lifestyle and simply being more careful in regards to lifting heavy objects. Joining a senior rehabilitation program that includes physical therapy can also help alleviate the chronic pain associated with osteoarthritis.

American Senior Communities can help you recover faster from an elective orthopedic surgery with our Moving Forward Rehabilitation program. Contact us today to request more information.

January is Glaucoma Awareness Month

glaucoma awareness monthAccording to the Glaucoma Research Foundation, people of all ages can be at risk for glaucoma, the leading cause of blindness in the United States. However, for those over age 60, the risk increases. This is why it’s so vital that seniors see their eye doctor on an annual basis, as well as understand some of the risk factors and symptoms of the disease.

What is Glaucoma?

Over 3 million Americans have glaucoma, and the National Eye Institute estimates that number could escalate to 4.2 million by the year 2030. It is the leading cause of preventable blindness in those past age 60, but over half of those with glaucoma are not aware they even have it.

Glaucoma is a complicated disease that is caused by increased pressure within the eyeball, gradually leading to loss of sight. It usually occurs when fluid builds up in the front part of the eye, which increases the pressure in the eye and damages the optic nerve. With early treatment, blindness from glaucoma often can be prevented.

There are several different types of glaucoma, with the most common forms being primary open-angle glaucoma and closed angle (angle closure) glaucoma. In a healthy eye, aqueous humor (a clear fluid) circulates inside the front portion of the eye, which is continually produced as an equal amount flows out of the eye to maintain healthy eye pressure. When one has glaucoma, the aqueous humor does not flow out of the eye properly, and this leads to the buildup of fluid and rising pressure.

Common Glaucoma Symptoms and Risk Factors

Unfortunately, with open-angle glaucoma there can be virtually no symptoms. However, some people report pain, usually due to the increased eye pressure. There will also be a gradual loss of peripheral vision in both eyes, and as the disease progresses this can lead to tunnel vision. In closed angle glaucoma, symptoms usually include severe eye pain that can lead to nausea and/or vomiting, blurred vision, halo-glows around lights, red eyes or sudden vision problems in dim lighting.

As mentioned before, age is one of the main risk factors for glaucoma. However, ethnic background can also play a role, as Asian-Americans and African-Americans are more likely to develop glaucoma as compared to Caucasians. People with diabetes or hypothyroidism also have an increased risk, as well as those who have had eye injuries, retinal detachment, eye inflammations or eye tumors. Plus, those who are nearsighted or underwent eye surgery have a higher risk for glaucoma, too.

National Glaucoma Awareness Month 2017

The Glaucoma Research Foundation has designated January as National Glaucoma Awareness Month in an effort to raise awareness and prevention for the sight-stealing disease. The foundation encourages people who have glaucoma to talk about their condition and to get involved in the community through events like fundraisers, group discussions and information sessions.

For seniors, January is a great time to get your annual eye exam scheduled. A comprehensive eye exam can detect the beginnings of glaucoma, which allows for treatment to start immediately. And, if detected early enough, further damage from this serious condition can be halted. Treatment for glaucoma in seniors can include a combination of oral medications and eye drops, or conventional or laser surgery.

Plus, spread the word about preventing glaucoma. Along with an annual eye exam, wear proper eye protection when engaged in sports or home improvement projects, and exercise regularly.

American Senior Communities offers a variety of senior healthcare services throughout our locations. Contact us today to request more information.

Top New Year’s Resolutions for a Happy, Healthy 2017

top new year's resolutions for seniorsTowards the end of every December, those of all ages reflect on the year they’re leaving behind and start focusing on the future. January really is a great time to set some New Year’s goals in an attempt to better yourself in one way or another. The hectic holiday season has come to a close, and you can now get settled back into your daily routine. Or, better yet, create a new routine to ensure you’re getting the most out of all life has to offer.

The Best New Year’s Resolutions for Seniors

For seniors, breaking old habits can be somewhat difficult. It’s so easy to get set in your ways, doing the same things day in and day out, with little thought to the impact they’re having on your overall wellness. This is why it’s important to think about how you can live the fullest life possible and start changing up your routine accordingly.

So, how can you get started with making some resolutions for the new year? Here are a few suggestions:

Research healthy habits. Before deciding that you want to set some new year goals to get healthy, find out what healthy aging really means. Think about your current health and the habits that need to be altered. For instance, maybe you’re already fairly active, but tend to feel anxious or stressed out. You can consider adding senior yoga or meditation to your workout. Or, maybe you’re trying to watch your blood sugar levels, so start researching low sugar dessert or cooking options. Find out what healthy habits can be easily incorporated into your routine. Even small changes can lead to big outcomes when it comes to your health!

Take a walk every day. Experts recommend getting at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day. So, even if you aren’t ready to hit the gym, make it your goal to get up and walk regularly. If you can’t do 30 minutes straight, start with five or 10 minute increments and work your way up. Start a walking club at your senior living community to make your walks a social event!

Cross an item off your bucket list. Of course, some items like skydiving or bungee-jumping may be out of the question, but there are still plenty of things you can accomplish in your later years. Write your memoir, take a trip to somewhere you’ve always wanted to go, or sign up for that painting class. Start working towards your goal now!

Connect- or reconnect- with friends and family. The older you get, the more difficult it can be to stay in touch with friends and family, especially those who don’t live nearby. Luckily, there is plenty of technology available for seniors today to stay connected—or reconnect—with loved ones! Ask a grandchild to set up a Facebook page for you, or get familiar with Skype to talk “face-to-face” with those who live far away.

Enjoy life to the fullest. This might seem like an obvious New Year’s resolution, but it’s so easy for us to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of our daily lives that we tend to miss out on the small pleasures. Settle in on a chilly day with a book from your favorite author. Go to lunch with a family member you haven’t seen much of lately. Volunteer or join a club at your senior living community. Simply enjoy doing all the things you love to do!

American Senior Communities offers a variety of senior healthcare services throughout our locations. Contact us today to request more information.

How Proper Senior Rehabilitation Promotes Wellness and Independence

importance of senior rehabilitationParticipating in a senior rehabilitation program is extremely beneficial to improve mobility, balance and strength after any type of illness or injury. Or, for seniors who experience chronic pain that impacts how well they are able to get around, physical therapy can help them regain their independence- or maintain their current level of independence.

Plus, senior rehabilitation can also include both occupational therapy and speech therapy. Occupational therapy helps make activities of daily living easier, while speech therapy helps seniors learn to communicate effectively. So, physical therapy aids in seniors’ mobility, occupational therapy helps them complete tasks, and speech therapy allows them to communicate clearly—all allowing them to return to the most independent lifestyle possible.

Regain Your Independence through Senior Rehabilitation

As we age, it’s normal for our bodies to go through physical changes. This can lead to seniors feeling nervous or apprehensive about starting any sort of exercise program, due to the decline in muscle mass and bone density that may cause them daily pain. However, staying as active as possible is key to healthy aging. The less active you are, the more strength and balance you lose, both of which can lead to a debilitating fall.

After a hospital stay for an injury, illness or surgery, many seniors enter a rehab facility to assist them down the road to recovery. The type of therapy they receive will depend upon each individual’s situation.

For instance, if a senior has suffered a broken hip from a fall, physical therapy will help them regain their strength and balance through a variety of specific exercises to ensure they are steady on their feet. Physical therapy for seniors can influence their strength and endurance levels long after the sessions have ended, keeping them more resilient as the days go on and reducing the risk of a subsequent fall.

On the other hand, following a stroke, a senior may need all forms of therapy to return to his or her maximum potential. In many cases, the chronic conditions that a stroke causes may change over time. A physical therapist will do an evaluation on the individual’s balance, and can help provide training to improve his or her ability to walk or decrease the risk of a fall. Often, stroke survivors also need assistance re-learning how to do such tasks as dressing or bathing, and an occupational therapist will train and educate both the individual and family members involved in providing care. Finally, a speech therapist will help improve the stroke survivor’s ability to communicate, as well as their ability to swallow.

Whether seniors require long-term or short-term rehabilitation, there’s no denying the important role it plays in returning them to an independent, active lifestyle. Senior rehabilitation promotes overall wellness, ensuring individuals reach their goals and live as healthy and as confidently as possible.

American Senior Communities provides senior rehabilitation services through our Moving Forward Rehabilitation program, available throughout our locations. Contact us today to request more information.

Happy Holidays from American Senior Communities!

happy holidays from ascFrom all of us here at American Senior Communities, we just wanted to take a moment to say happy holidays to our wonderful residents and their families. It’s a special time of year when we gather with those we hold dear, reflect on the past year and look forward to a bright new year ahead full of possibilities.

Enjoy the Holiday Season with Aging Loved Ones

Throughout the holidays, visiting aging loved ones residing in assisted living communities is important to let these special people in our lives know how much we care. It’s the most wonderful time of the year, but don’t forget that for some seniors, it can also be a difficult time. The holidays are full of memories and traditions passed down from generation to generation, and it’s not uncommon for some seniors to wistfully remember “the old days.”

So, take some extra time to visit your loved ones over the next few weeks to keep their spirits high. The assisted living community will undoubtedly offer a variety of holiday events, entertainment and social activities, many of which families are encouraged to attend. But you can also enjoy some quality one-on-one time with your loved one.

Here are a few ways to boost your loved one’s mood and get the most out of your time together over the holidays:

Share the memories. Bring in a family photo album to look at pictures of holiday gatherings from the past. Let your loved one reminisce and tell stories about the traditions they cherish the most.

Bake some treats. Many of our aging loved ones have a special holiday cookie or treat they only get this time of year, so whether you bake them yourself or pick them up a local bakery, your loved one will surely appreciate a tasty snack.

Trim the tree. Set up a small tree in your loved one’s apartment and bring in some special ornaments to decorate with. If you have any of the ornaments that used to adorn the tree in their prior home, even better! Bring those in and let your loved one tell the story of where each ornament came from or why it has special meaning.

Go out on the town. If possible, take your loved one out for an evening. You can simply just drive through some neighborhoods and take in all the holiday light displays. Or, head to the theater for a holiday show, go out to dinner at a nice restaurant, head to a coffee shop for some hot cocoa, or visit some friends your loved one may not get to see very often.

How will you spend the holidays with your aging loved one this season?

We hope you enjoy all the magic of the season!

American Senior Communities offers a variety of senior healthcare services throughout our locations. Contact us today to request more information.

 

Seniors and Nutrition: Why Eating Together is Better

Seniors and NutritionIn the past, dinnertime provided an opportunity for families to gather together, to discuss the events of the day while enjoying a home-cooked meal. However, today studies reveal that the average American family rarely eats together, and this lack of regular togetherness could be responsible for children having trouble in school, or lead to poor nutrition and obesity.

Eating together could provide benefits for those of all ages, but for seniors, it can be even more vital.  Seniors who regularly eat alone are often at higher risk for a variety of health issues, especially malnutrition. Malnutrition leads to a variety of problems, like unintentional weight loss, weakness or dizziness that can lead to a fall and broken bones, and even depression.

As you age, your body does go through changes that also change the way you eat. Your metabolism slows down, so your activity levels also slow down. You don’t need as many calories as you previously did, so your appetite decreases. Medication side effects can also lead to a lack of appetite, making food seem unappealing. Plus, many seniors have oral issues, with dentures or trouble swallowing that can make eating difficult. However, it’s still important to get three healthy meals each day to ensure optimal health and ward off malnutrition.

Why Social Eating = Healthy Eating for Seniors

Eating together promotes healthy eating for seniors, especially for those living alone. This is because we naturally eat more around others and make better food choices. Often, seniors feel like cooking a big, healthy meal just for one is too difficult and pointless, so they turn to pre-packaged or frozen foods. Or, worse, they skip meals altogether.

Another study revealed that one in five seniors report that they feel loneliest when eating by themselves. Their friends or family live too far away to join them for meals, or perhaps they can no longer drive to go enjoy a dinner out with others. When mealtimes are shared with others, they will last as much as twice as long as when a senior eats alone. Plus, an overwhelming majority of the seniors in this study, around 85 percent, say having someone to share their meals with makes mealtimes more satisfying. While the taste and nutritional value of the food itself is important, seniors report that sharing stimulating conversation during the meal is almost equally as important.

Senior living communities recognize the importance of eating together, and many offer restaurant-style dining with a variety of well-balanced, healthy meals to residents. These residents who eat together are provided a chance to talk about the events of the day, bringing back memories of eating with their families. Often, new friendships are made and relationships with others grow while sitting around the table together.

American Senior Communities offers a variety of senior healthcare services throughout our locations. Contact us today to request more information.

Tips for Visiting Loved Ones with Dementia

visiting a loved one with dementiaSometimes, it might feel difficult to visit our loved ones with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. You might feel frustrated that it doesn’t seem like you’re being recognized, or think that your loved one won’t even remember you were there. However, studies show that those with dementia can still benefit from your visit; they may enjoy being with others and may notice when you don’t come around as often as you used to.

What To Do While Visiting a Loved One with Dementia

It’s the time of year when we are thankful for all our many blessings and spend extra time with those we hold dear to our hearts. Talking to and dealing with dementia sufferers over the holidays can be a positive experience for all those involved, especially if you keep in mind the tips below:

Set realistic expectations. Prepare yourself for the visit each time by facing the reality that it’s possible your loved one may not remember you, or may display challenging or frustrating behaviors. Learn what times of the day loved ones are at their best, as usually there are certain times where they may be more confused and anxious, and schedule your visit within those time frames.

Make eye contact and introduce yourself. It’s important that your loved one sees you, so make face-to-face eye contact down at their level. Introduce yourself right away, so they do not get stressed or embarrassed that they don’t recognize you right away.

Speak slowly, asking questions one at a time. While you should be respectful and not treat your loved ones like a child or talk down to them, you should speak slowly and clearly, repeating yourself as needed. Let them answer questions in their own time, rather than bombarding them with multiple questions at once.

Minimize distractions in the room. Turn off the television and radio during your visit. Or, if you’re in a room with others that has become noisy or busy, move to another area. The more distractions there are in the room, the more difficult it will be to have any sort of conversation.

Bring along some photos or mementos. Looking at old photos with loved ones is not only fun, but it can also spark memories in those dealing with dementia. Your loved ones may be soothed by seeing familiar items, and may even be prompted to tell the story behind them.

Read a book or sing a song. If your loved one is in the later stages of Alzheimer’s disease, communication may not be possible. Bring a favorite book and read a few chapters out loud. Or, load an mp3 player with some favorite music to sing along to. Music has been known to ease aggressive behaviors, one of the common symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, and improve cognitive, speech and physical skills.

Avoid getting argumentative or negative. Lastly, while it may be difficult at times, remember that getting argumentative is not going to benefit anyone. You will not win! Also, avoid negative statements like “don’t do that.” Instead, try to refocus and validate their feelings.

Remember, even if your loved one no longer recognizes you, your presence alone can be enjoyable and soothing. Keep the visits up not just during the holiday season, but throughout the rest of the year, too.

American Senior Communities offers person-centered dementia care at our Auguste’s Cottage and a variety of assisted living memory care apartments throughout our locations. Contact us today to request more information.

 

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