Six Things to Help Protect Your Eyesight

If you’re over age 40, chances are you are dealing with some degree of presbyopia. This complex term refers to the natural changes that occur with aging eyes. Presbyopia makes it more difficult to read small print, which is the main reason many older people wear reading glasses even if they don’t need glasses otherwise. While some degree of presbyopia is inevitable in nearly everyone, there are six relatively simple strategies that seniors can take to protect their precious eyesight for as long as possible. 


Only Wear Sunglasses during VERY Bright Activities
 

Most people believe that sunglasses protect your eyes like suntan lotion. New research however is finding that there are over 1,500 wavelengths of light that feed and nourish your eyes. Depriving your eyes of these wavelengths can result in eye malnourishment and lead to visual impairment. 

The only time you really should wear sunglasses would be during activities like spending the day on a boat or a ski hill. The water and snow in these activities intensifies the sun’s rays and can do damage to your eyes. Other than water-type activities or other reasons the sun might be intensified, try to keep the sunglasses off as much as possible, 


Eat More Fruit
 

Eating a diet rich in fruits such as berries, and vegetables like tomatoes, helps your body produce antioxidants that fight free radicals – an important aspect of protecting your vision. Bilberries, the European blueberry, may prevent or even reverse macular degeneration. Dark colored berries such as blueberries and cranberries also have bioflavonoids that strengthen capillaries in your eyes to better carry nutrients in. 

Remember to eat berries in moderation, because many of them have fructose, which breaks down into sugar in your body. 

Other foods and nutrients that really help include foods that contain lutein and zeaxanthin, which are antioxidants which help slow down macular degeneration. Astaxanthin is another antioxidant that supports your eye energy levels, and helps maintain a healthy eye pressure level. Foods that contain these antioxidants include:  

  • Free range organic eggs 
  • Spinach 
  • Kale 
  • Wild-caught Salmon 

Try to avoid trans fats from processed foods. Trans fats interfere with Omega-3 in your body and contribute to macular degeneration. Stay away from aspartame as well. Visual problems can come about as a result of this Diet Coke sweetener. 


Practice Proper Eye Hygiene

Back in the day, eyesight correction required thick heavy glasses. Hard contacts were viewed as an innovation – but required an elaborate routine of lens solution and nightly boiling. Today, there are contacts that you can wear to bed. But just because you can wear your contacts while you sleep doesn’t mean that you should do so. With rare exceptions, removing your contacts at night is an essential part of proper eye hygiene. 

You may want to consider dropping the contacts completely. Some research suggests that having your eyes rely on glasses causes more harm than good. Contacts can make the eye prone to infection, irritate your eyes and make your eyes reliant on them. 

If you have a loved one at one of  our assisted living homes, we have a mobile opthamologist that can come out and see them. 


Maintain Regular Exercise
 

Maintaining regular exercise is an essential aspect of overall health. But exercise can provide benefits for maintaining your eyesight as you age. Specifically, regular exercise can help prevent macular degeneration – a common condition among older individuals. 

In particular use exercise to keep your blood sugar at a normal level. High blood pressure could damage a lot of small blood vessels around your eye, and obstruct the blood flow. 


Take Screen Breaks
 

Much of the day for many people of all ages is spent looking into screens – computer screens, TV screens, and especially cell phone screens. So much focus on screens causes eye strain and fatigue – and can eventually take a toll on your eyesight. Remember the 20-20-20 rule when working at your computer: every 20 minutes, take 20 seconds to focus on something at least 20 feet away from where you are. This simple strategy gives your eyes a much needed break. 

A large amount of research has shown that it is better to just relax your eyes in general rather than try to exercise the muscles in them. Sleeping on a regular basis, meditating and performing yoga, will help you relax your eyes and help them perform better. 


Get Regular Checkups
 

Self care is an important aspect of maintaining good eye health. However, it is also important to have regular checkups with your ophthalmologist, even if you don’t wear glasses or contact lenses. Only a professional examination can disclose potential problems, such as macular degeneration or glaucoma at an early stage – when they can be more readily treated. 

As the list above demonstrates, some of the most effective strategies for preserving your sight are also easy to accomplish. And maintaining your eyesight is an important aspect of aging well. 

The Side Effects of Statin Drugs

Statins are a specific type of drug that are usually prescribed by doctors to help lower patients’ cholesterol level in the blood. The makers of the Statin drugs also claim they help lower the risk of stroke and heart attack. Statins also may help in reducing inflammation, improving the lining of the blood vessels and reducing the risk of blood clots. The drug works by lowering the liver’s production of cholesterol and helping the liver get rid of the cholesterol in your blood stream.

What Are Some Examples of Statins?

These are the examples of statins that are approved for consumption in the U.S.

  • Atorvastatin (Lipitor)
  • Fluvastatin (Lescol, Lescol XL)
  • Lovastatin (Mevacor, Alroprev)
  • Pravastatin (Pravachol)
  • Rosuvastatin (Crestor)
  • Simvastatin (Zocor)
  • Pitavastatin (Livalo)

Currently 1 in 4 Americans are taking some type of Statin drug. This number will probably increase in the near future thanks to the recommendations from the US Preventative Services Task Force. There are, however, an increasing number of physicians that believe Statins do much more harm than good. Specifically they are concerned that:

  1. Lowering cholesterol is not the only way to reduce heart attack risk. There is a lot of research coming out saying higher levels of cholesterol improve brain function and cognitive ability without having much affect on heart attack risk.
  2. Statins also suppress the levels of vital nutrients in your body:
    1. CoQ10 – CoQ10 is used for energy production by every cell in your body. Since the heart is one of the biggest energy users in your body, reduction of CoQ10 may actually increase your chance for a heart attack. Make sure if you are taking statins you also take a CoQ10 supplement.
    2. Vitamin K2 – Without K2, your arteries start building up plaque, which could lead to a heart attack.
  3. Increased risk of serious diseases – Long-term statin use may increase women’s chances of contracting breast cancer. For men it increases the risk of prostrtate cancer.

Because the physicians believe Statins really don’t reduce the risk of heart attack, but they cause lots of potential side effects, they recommend staying away from taking Statins. The Doctors who believe people should take Statins still note side effects.

Who are at risk of developing statin side effects?

Everyone who takes statin drugs are at risk of developing its side effects. But not everyone will have side effects. Some people may be more prone to experience these effects than others. The risk factors are:

  • Taking numerous medicines to lower cholesterol
  • Being a woman
  • A smaller body frame
  • Senior citizens (65 years old or older)
  • Existing kidney or liver disease
  • Consuming too much alcohol

What Are The Side Effects of Statin?

These are the common side effects that may affect one people taking statin drugs.

Muscle Pain and Damage

Muscle pain is one of the most common side effects and is often the main complaint of people who take statins. Soreness, tiredness or weakness in your muscle are also some of the symptoms you may experience while taking the drug. In addition, you may feel a mild discomfort or a pain so severe that it can disrupt your daily activities.

If you experience intolerable muscle pain you should either discontinue taking statins or switch to a different variety of the drug. Many people usually do well after switching to a different variety of statin.

Neurological Side Effects

The FDA has issued warnings on statin labels concerning memory loss or confusion. However, if you stop taking the drugs these side effects will also disappear. Make sure you coordinate with your Doctor if you are thinking about stopping the Statins.

Increased Blood Sugar or  Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

When you start your statin medication it is possible to develop type 2 diabetes since your blood sugar level may increase. The risk is not likely to happen but the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) included a warning on statin labels pertaining to diabetes and blood sugar levels.

One of the purposes of statin drugs is that it prevents heart attacks in diabetics. So the reason of the slight increase in blood sugar levels observed in individuals taking stating is quite ambiguous.

Damage of the Liver or Kidney

Although it only occurs occasionally, statins can also cause enzymes that signal liver inflammation to rise. If the increase is not drastic, then you can continue taking statins. But if your enzymes increase significantly, you may need to try a different kind of statin.

Liver problems due to statin rarely happens. But your doctor may still require a liver enzyme test shortly after taking statins. One test is usually enough for the whole statin medication unless you begin to show signs and symptoms of liver problems.

It is advisable to be wary about unusual fatigue or weakness, loss of appetite, upper abdomen or chest pain, bloody or dark-colored urine or yellowing of skin or eyes since these can be signs of serious kidney and liver disorder.

Other common side effects are:

  • Nosebleed
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or blocked nose that are not caused by allergic rhinitis
  • Headache
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhoea
  • Indigestion
  • Flatulence
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Bloating or gas
  • Dizziness
  • Flushing of the skin

What are the Serious Statin Side Effects?

These are the uncommon side effects that can occur in one out of a hundred people. Although rare, these effects are potentially serious and can pose a threat on your life.

Myositis

Myositis is the inflammation of the muscles. The risk of contracting this disorder increases when other medications are taken along with statins. For instance, if you take statin and another drug that reduces cholesterol, the risk of muscle damage increases compared to taking statin alone.

Elevated levels of CPK

CPK or creatine kinase is a muscle enzyme that can cause muscle pain, mild inflammation, and muscle weakness when elevated. This disorder rarely happens. But when it does, it can take a longer time to resolve.

Rhabdomyolysis

Rhabdomyolysis is a condition wherein you experience extreme muscle inflammation and damage. This condition is so severe that the muscles all over your body become painful and weak. The damaged muscles excrete proteins into the blood stream that end up in the kidneys. The kidneys will then try to eliminate large amounts of muscle breakdown, which can potentially lead to kidney failure or even death.

Thankfully, this condition is very rare. It only happens in less than one in 10,000 people on Statins.

Other examples of uncommon statin side effects can happen:

  • Loss of appetite or sudden weight gain
  • Being sick
  • Insomnia or night terrors
  • Dizzines
  • Memory problems
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Inflammation of the liver
  • Inflammation of the pancreas
  • Skin problems like acne or rashes

 

How to Remedy Statin Side Effects?

Your doctor may recommend some of these options to relieve you from the side effects of statin. But before trying them, opt to visit your doctor and discuss these options with him/her.

Stop taking statin drugs.

It is hard to pinpoint if the cause of your muscle problems or other conditions is due to statin or just part of the process of aging. Your doctor may ask you to take a break from statin to determine if your concerns are because of statin or something else.

Switch to another statin drug.

It is possible that one particular statin may cause side effects while other variations would not. It is said that simvastatin is prone to cause muscle pain when taken in high doses compared to other statins.

Alter your dosage.

By lowering your dose, you can also lower the manifestation of statin’s side effects. But in turn, may also reduce the cholesterol-lowering benefits you get from the drug. Another alternative is to take the medication every two days.

Ask your doctor for other cholesterol-lowering drugs.

There are other types of drugs available to lower cholesterol other than statin. But statin proves to be the most effective in doing so. Instead, you can take a combination of cholesterol-lowering drugs and it provides you the same result with a lower statin dosage.

If you have experienced mild side effects from statin, do not stop taking your medication without visiting your doctor first. Remember also that diet and exercise can be very effective at lowering the risk of heart attack. Don’t feel like you have to rely on drugs exclusively.

5 Widespread Myths People Harbor About Hospice

Our homes work with several top-notch Hospice companies. One of our favorites is Hospice of the West. The Chief Administrative Officer for Hospice of the West was gracious enough to write a blog post explaining some common misconceptions people have of Hospice.

The importance of hospice can be challenging to describe unless one has experienced this compassionate and comprehensive model of care.   Unfortunately, there are a lot of misconceptions about hospice, including the philosophy of care and services. Not all healthcare providers are educated on having the hospice conversation. A primary goal for hospice is to debunk common myths and to guide others in having an open, honest, healthy discussion on what hospice is.

One of the Biggest Hospice Myths

An example of a common myth is hospice means giving up hope. The truth is that deciding to receive hospice services does not mean giving up hope. Hospice is about redefining the patient’s goals. The hope may have switched from curing the illness to the hope of living life to its fullest when one has a life-limiting illness. Once a patient is receiving hospice services they sometimes will feel a greater sense of overall well-being. From being involved in the day-to-day decisions of their plan of care, to relief from pain and other symptoms, to having the support for themselves and their families, patients are able to live lives of a higher quality.

Other common hospice myths include:

Myth 2 

Hospice is a place.

Fact:      Hospice is a philosophy, a state of mind and an interdisciplinary approach to end-of-life care. Hospice is tailored to care for the patients wherever they call home.

 

Myth 3  

A patient must be a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) in order to be on Hospice.

Fact:      Some hospices require their patients to be a DNR in order to elect their hospice benefit, Hospice of the West does not require their patients to sign a DNR prior to electing their benefit.  The decision to be a DNR is a part of the expected journey for patients.  Hospice of the West provides education, emotional support and reassurance to patient as they work towards understanding and accepting the option to be a DNR

 

Myth 4  

Physicians are the only ones who can refer a patient for hospice services.

Fact:      Hospice is an elected benefit and anyone who wishes can self-refer.  It is not necessary to have a physician refer an individual for an evaluation. Hospice of the West is able to work with the patient’s physician if it is decided that they are eligible for hospice services, and choose to receive services, or one of our Medical Directors can oversee the patient’s care if they do not have a primary physician.

 

Myth 5  

Once a patient elect hospice services, they cannot go back to seeking aggressive treatment.

Fact:      The hospice philosophy is one that seeks comfort care (symptom management) vs. curative treatment. Should a patient decide that they would like to go back to seeking aggressive, curative care, they may revoke their hospice benefit. Should the patient want to return to hospice care in the future, they have the option of being readmitted and receiving services again.

Rhea Go-Coloma, Licensed Medical Social Worker (LMSW) and Certified Master Forensic Social Worker (CMFSW) is the Chief Administrative Officer for Hospice of the West. She is certified in gerontology and is a current Doctoral student. She has served the community as a caregiver, grant writer, educator, volunteer, social worker and hospice manager.

 

Age Well with These Five Superfoods

Maintaining a healthy overall diet is an essential element to remaining healthy as you age. But consuming these five superfoods can kick your physical health and cognitive functioning up to the next level. These delicious foods help reduce the risk of cancer and heart disease, help preserve your vision and improve your skin, boost your immune system, and enhance cognitive functioning. What’s not to like? Our staff nutritionist helps make these recommendations for our residents in our homes. We thought you would like to hear about them as well.

 

Blueberries

 

Like other blue or purple-tinted foods like blood oranges, eggplant, and purple potatoes, blueberries are rich in antioxidants that eliminate age-accelerating and cancer-causing free radicals in the body. A study by Tufts University showed that the dark pigment in blueberries (anthocyanins) combat oxidative stress, which is a major contributor to aging. They also found that blueberries can help fight memory loss.

Another study published by City of Hope Hospital suggested that blueberries could also fight the growth of tumors in the body. Since blueberries are a fruit and still contain fructose, eat them in moderation. Eating lots of fructose will cause your insulin levels to spike.

 

Dark Chocolate

 

Chocolate loves, rejoice! The cocoa powder used to make chocolate is abundant with flavanoids, which lower the risk of high blood pressure, Type-2 diabetes, and kidney disease. Up to 20% of the compounds in cocoa beans are flavonoids. Studies even support the idea that chocolate can also reduce the risk of dementia. One study from the Sansom Institute for Health at the University of South Australia concluded that people who ate chocolate once a week had better mental performance than those who did not. Dark cocoa drinks have also been shown to improve blood vessel function in diabetics.

Although milk chocolate also contains cocoa powder, dark chocolate contains much more, which makes it more beneficial. Milk chocolate also contains a lot of sugar, which dampens the health benefits. Look for chocolate that has at least a percentage of cocoa/cacao of 70 or higher. The more bitter the better.

 

Good Fats and Nuts

 

Good fats, such as olive oil and avocados, contain monounsaturated fats that fight heart disease and cancer, while also promoting brain health. Olive oil is delicious in salads or with pasta. Nuts are rich in unsaturated fats, which protect against heart disease, and Type-2 diabetes. Nuts also protect against age-related memory loss. Have a handful as a snack paired with a glass of red wine, which contains resveratrol that can help slow cellular aging. Avocados are also delicious in salads, in omelets, or as a snack dip. However, nuts, avocados, and olive oil are also high in calories, so consume them in moderation.

 

Salmon and Other Cold-Water Fish

 

Salmon and other cold-water fish are rich in Omega-3, an essential fatty acid that the body cannot produce on its own. Omega-3 fatty acids lower bad cholesterol levels. Omega-3 acids also contain cartenoids, which protect eyesight and fight the visible signs of aging. Finally, Omega-3 acids also help decrease brain fogginess. If you have the choice, opt for wild-caught salmon over farmed salmon.

Avoid fish like tuna that are higher on the food chain. As fish eat other fish, their levels of Mercury go up. Tuna are very high on the food chain and contain high doses of Mercury. If you want to supplement your diet with low-food chain food, a high-quality Krill Oil makes an excellent choice.

 

Tomatoes

 

Tomatoes are packed with lycopene, which protects the body against several types of cancer, including colon, lung, skin, and prostate cancer. Tomatoes also lower the risk of vision robbing macular degeneration and cataracts, as well as reducing the risk of heart disease. Eat them in salads, omelets, or in salsa – or just enjoy them freshly sliced.

 

Bon Appétit!

 

Eating these superfoods represents a delicious way of maintaining good health and optimal brain functioning as you age. Eat and enjoy!

7 Basic Tai Chi Exercises for Seniors

When you think of martial arts, you inevitably think of kicking, punching, rigorous training and body contact. Most martial arts involve vigorous fighting techniques. But there is an ancient martial art that does not promote violence or self-defense. It is perfect for seniors and older adults who look for a low-impact exercise that still improves their health.

What is Tai Chi?

There is a reason why Tai Chi has been around for so many centuries. Dubbed the ‘longevity exercise’, Tai Chi is an ancient Chinese martial art that practices meditation in motion. It involves a series of movements executed in a slow, rhythmic, and focused manner together with deep breathing. Each movement flows into the next without pausing, to ensure that your body is in constant motion.

This exercises are perfect for seniors since they are non-competitive, low impact, self-paced, and a gentle physical exercise combined with stretching of the muscles to prevent injury. Tai Chi’s gentle and flowing actions promote relaxation, stress relief and a conscious awareness of the present.

What Are The Benefits of Tai Chi?

According to the Chinese who practice Tai Chi, this exercise is capable of delaying the aging process, prolonging life, increasing flexibility, strengthening muscles and tendons. Tai Chi also aids in the treatment of heart disease, high blood pressure, arthritis, skin diseases, and many other illnesses. But there has not been sufficient scientific evidence to support this claim.

However, a meta-analysis study (a study that combined the results of many different studies) conducted  research on Tai Chi. Throughout the research, many subjects were observed. Researchers concluded that there are indeed, positive effects of tai chi on health, fitness, and balance.

Here are some of the supported health benefits of Tai Chi:

  • Improves Balance
  • Strength and Endurance
  • Reduces Stress, Anxiety and Depression
  • Eliminate the Fear of Falling
  • Improves Self-Confidence
  • Improves Aerobic Capacity
  • Enhances Quality of Sleep
  • Improves Overall Well-being

 

Basic Tai Chi Movements

  1. Warm Up

Just like in every workout, warming up your body is important to prevent injuries and facilitate Tai Chi movements. Tai Chi instructor Ellae Elinwood wrote a book called “Stay Young with Tai Chi”. In her book she stated that Tai Chi warm ups “promote a relaxed attitude and encourage a state of well being.”

An example of a basic Tai Chi warm up is the waist loosening exercise:

  1. Stand with your feet flat on the floor – slightly wider than your hip-width distance apart.
  2. Relax your arms by your sides.
  3. Rotate your hips to the right and to the left while letting your arms hang loosely. With each rotation, your arms should flap against your body as you rotate.
  4. Repeat for 1-2 minutes or when you feel like your body has warmed up.
  5. You can then include your neck, shoulders, and spine in the rotations, making each movement smooth.

 

  1. Touch the Sky

As described in Domingo Colon’s guide “Senior’s Tai Chi Workout: Improve Balance, Strength and Flexibility”, this is a simple exercise perfect for beginners in Tai Chi. This exercise is also a great warm up before proceeding to a more intensive workout as it synchronizes the breathing and movement.

  1. Sit up straight in a comfortable chair.
  2. Place your hands in your lap with your palms turned upward and your fingertips pointing toward one another.
  3. As you inhale slowly and deeply, raise your hands to chest level in front of you, turn your palms outward and lift your hands above your head.
  4. Do not reach too far with your arms; keep your elbows relaxed and slightly bent.
  5. As you exhale slowly and deeply, relax your arms further and gently lower them to your sides.
  6. At the end of the breath, return your hands to the starting position with your palms turned upward.
  7. Repeat ten times.

 

  1. Windmill Exercise

This basic exercise promotes flexibility and it opens up your spine.

  1. Stand with your feet flat on the floor and slightly wider than shoulder-width apart.
  2. Release tension and relax your shoulders. Let your arms hang loosely by your sides.
  3. Bring your hands in front of your body with your fingers pointing down toward the floor.
  4. Inhale and raise your arms up towards the center of your body and bring it over your head, fingers pointing as you go.
  5. Stretch toward the ceiling and arch your spine slightly backward.
  6. Exhale and slowly bend your back forward to the floor, moving your hands down through the center of your body.
  7. Bend forward from your hip and let your arms to hang loosely in front of you.
  8. Inhale and return to your starting position.

  1. Hand Exercises

The Tai Chi hand exercises promote flexibility in your shoulders, arms and fingers.

  1. Stand with your feet a bit wider than shoulder-width distance apart.
  2. Raise your arms straight out in front of you, parallel to the floor, shoulder, wrists and elbows aligned.
  3. Flex your hands and feel the stretch, then rotate you wrists to the left and then switch to the right.

 

  1. Closing Posture

At the end of your Tai Chi session, you usually perform the Closing Posture to balance your energy, promote relaxation and serenity.

  1. Stand with your feet shoulder-width distance apart. Relax your shoulders and bring your hands in a cupped position with your palms facing upwards, resting in front of your pelvic bone.
  2. Close your eyes and imagine that you are pulling your energy upwards as you bring your hands up to the center of your body and onto your chest.
  3. Exhale and turn your hands to the other direction so your palms are facing down. Imagine you are pushing your energy down as you push your hands toward the floor.
  4. Repeat this exercise for 1 to 2 minutes.

 

  1. Shooting the Bow

This is a simple standing exercise that you can easily do:.

  1. Stand with your feet spread about shoulder-width apart and your arms hanging loosely at your sides.
  2. Round your back and bend your knees slightly, looking straight ahead with a relaxed posture.
  3. Ball your fists and place them directly in front of your face with your fingers facing you and the heels of your palms touching the sides.
  4. Breathe in slowly and deeply,
  5. As you inhale slowly and deeply, rotate the waist to face to your left while extending your left hand directly in front of you.
  6. Your left hand should open with your palm facing outward; your left arm should be relaxed and slightly bent.
  7. Simultaneously, pull back slightly with your right fist as if shooting a bow and arrow.
  8. Exhale slowly and deeply as you return to your starting position.
  9. On your next breath, repeat the on the side.
  10. Complete up to 10 repetitions.

 

  1. The Golden Lion Shakes its Mane

 

  1. Grab a comfortable chair and sit up straight, with hands resting lightly on your thighs.
  2. Be comfortable and breathe in and out. As you exhale, feel the stretch in your lower back as you lean forward.
  3. As you feel the stretch, twist your shoulders to one side, allowing your head and neck to turn with your shoulders and spine.
  4. Inhale slowly as you twist your back facing forward and return to your starting position.
  5. Repeat the movement facing the other side.
  6. Reverse the movement again as you inhale, returning to the starting position.
  7. Complete up to 10 repetitions on each side.

Seniors, even those with limited movement, are capable of Tai Chi. These exercises keep you fit without worrying about injuries that are caused by vigorous exercise. Relax, rejuvenate and keep your blood flowing through incorporating Tai Chi in your weekly activities.

What is Memory Care?

The reality is that memory loss is not a new phenomena, even though Alzheimer’s disease and general dementia are often in today’s headlines. In 1906, a woman passed away from ‘an unusual mental illness’. Her symptoms included memory loss, language problems, and unpredictable behavior. Her doctor was Dr. Alzheimer.

Memory care homes are widely available for those who suffer from declining or lost memory. It can be devastating to witness a loved one who has started to lose their memory. Caring for a person suffering from memory loss can be challenging, and many of those challenges are often beyond what the average person can handle, which is why memory care is such a valuable asset in any care facility. We have one home that specializes in memory care, but all our homes can handle memory care residents to some extent.

Who Needs Memory Care?

Technically, people of all ages can suffer from memory loss due to various reasons. But when we think of memory care, we most often think of help for the elderly who suffer from general dementia, specifically Alzheimer’s. But the truth is that anyone who suffers from memory loss that affects their ability to function on a day-to-day basis is a prime candidate for memory care.

It’s easy to think you are having a ‘senior moment’ when you can’t remember where you put your car keys. The difference between that kind of forgetfulness and true memory issues is the person needing memory care can’t remember what their car keys are used for.

What are the Effects of Memory Loss?

Memory loss can go far beyond not remembering the faces of loved ones, although that is heartbreaking in and of itself. The challenge with memory loss is that it can also manifest in dangerous ways, such as:

  • Forgetting where one lives
  • Forgetting how to operate an oven
  • Neglecting personal hygiene
  • Being prone to angry outbursts and “acting out”
  • Wandering away from home at odd hours

What is Included in Memory Care?

People with memory loss don’t all need the same things in terms of assistance. That’s why homes such as our that offer memory care typically have varying degrees of help for their residents, depending on how far along they are in the progression of memory loss. Services relating to memory care may include such things as:

  • Medication reminders
  • Medication dosage regulation
  • Housekeeping and laundry service
  • Meal preparation
  • Overnight sleep monitoring
  • Bathing/toiletry assistance
  • Companionship
  • Encouragement of activities/hobbies

Many people who suffer memory loss also are cognizant of their issue, and feel embarrassed by it. They tend to withdraw and isolate themselves socially because they don’t want to look foolish. Social settings like a memory care home will help them to feel like they fit in again. Social interactions can help slow down the memory loss and keep the mind active.

If your loved one has been diagnosed with memory loss, it is advisable to seek out an assisted living home that can provide the specialized memory care your loved one needs. When you find one you’re interested in, be sure to carefully review what services are offered, because they won’t all be the same. You want to ensure that your loved one is receiving the correct level of supervision, in a care regimen designed to specifically address the issues relating to their memory loss.