Embracing Change: How the New Generation Approaches Senior Care and Care at Home for Their Loved Ones

As the new generation takes the reins of responsibility, they bring with them fresh perspectives on senior care and caring for loved ones at home. With technological advancements, changing societal attitudes, and a focus on individualized well-being, the new generation is reshaping the landscape of senior care. In this blog post, we explore how the new generation is embracing change and revolutionizing senior care for their loved ones.

1.  Leveraging Technology for Enhanced Care: The new generation grew up in a digital era, and they are harnessing technology to revolutionize senior care. Home care apps, wearable devices, and smart home technology are empowering them to monitor their loved ones’ health, safety, and daily activities remotely. These innovations provide peace of mind and enable immediate assistance in case of emergencies.

2.  Prioritizing Independence and Aging in Place: Unlike traditional approaches to senior care, the new generation recognizes the importance of promoting independence and enabling their loved ones to age in place. They seek out home care options that prioritize individual autonomy and strive to create an environment where seniors can maintain their lifestyle, routines, and social connections.

3.  Personalized Care Solutions for Individual Needs: Understanding that each person’s needs are unique, the new generation is demanding personalized care solutions for their loved ones. They value flexibility in care arrangements, such as customizable care plans and access to specialized services. By tailoring care to specific requirements, they ensure their loved ones receive the support they need while preserving their dignity and individuality.

4.  Collaboration and Information Sharing: The new generation is highly connected and seeks out knowledge and support from online resources, forums, and social networks. They actively engage in discussions related to senior care, exchanging experiences, seeking advice, and collaborating with other caregivers and professionals. This collective wisdom helps them make informed decisions and find the best solutions for their loved ones.

5.  Holistic Approach to Well-being: Recognizing the importance of mental and emotional well-being, the new generation goes beyond physical care. They prioritize activities that promote social interaction, mental stimulation, and emotional support for their loved ones. From arranging social outings to engaging in meaningful conversations, they aim to enhance their loved ones’ overall quality of life.

The new generation is redefining senior care and home care for their loved ones. Their embrace of technology, emphasis on independence, personalization of care, collaborative approach, and holistic well-being demonstrate a progressive and compassionate mindset. As they navigate the challenges of senior care, the new generation is paving the way for a future where individuals can age with dignity, comfort, and a strong support system in place. By embracing change and leveraging innovation, they are making a positive impact on the lives of their loved ones and shaping the future of senior care.

Strategies to Help Loved Seniors Navigate Life Alone 

The daily in-home services offered through Amber Personal Care include meal preparation, hygiene, cleaning, supervision, and more. Connect with us today to learn more! (303) 955-7018

Aging comes with many inevitable realities. If you have a senior loved one in your life, you may be wondering how you can help them deal with these realities, especially if they live alone. Below, Amber Personal Care shares some things you can do to help. 

Encourage Social Connection 

A recent poll by the University of Michigan reported that over 56% of older adults reported feeling alone. Here are some ways to reduce alienation in older adults.  

  • Improve mobility: Facilitate ease of movement by educating them about public transportation options or encouraging the use of adaptive aids. 
  • Getting a roommate: Setting your senior up with a roommate is an excellent way to help them save money, but it also gives them someone to interact with regularly. 
  • Move into a senior community: If it’s evident that your senior loved one is no longer capable of aging in place at home, look into local nursing facilities that offer social activities like game nights. You have a choice of 25 such facilities in Denver alone. 
  • Community engagement: Encourage your loved one to visit the local community center or fitness class to increase socialization

Improve Their Relationship with Technology 

Help your senior loved one get on board with technology. This can really help them navigate everyday life and loneliness.  

  • Encourage digital communication: Try to ease them into Zoom or FaceTime calls, so they can keep up with loved ones regularly.  
  • Smart devices: A smart device will help them make calls, provide entertainment and manage appointments and reminders. 
  • Get them an iPhone for their needs: While we may think the latest iPhone or Android is critical for communication, try to consider what will serve your loved one better instead. For example, a phone designed for seniors or more basic phone options with reduced features. 

How Else to Help 

You and other loved ones can also implement some easy strategies to better your seniors’ life. Here’s what to do: 

  • Visit regularly: If you can, try to visit regularly. This can help reduce feelings of loneliness and improve their mood. 
  • Financial help: Help your loved one navigate financial matters and decisions. An important one is the sale of their home (this handy calculator can help you with this). 
  • Don’t be patronizing: Be gentle with your suggestions, and avoid a condescending tone – no one likes being talked down to! 

According to the U.S. Census, approximately 27 percent of older adults live alone, leading to depression, anxiety, and alienation. Try the strategies mentioned above to help your loved one thrive in life – even when alone.  

The daily in-home services offered through Amber Personal Care include meal preparation, hygiene, cleaning, supervision, and more. Connect with us today to learn more! (303) 955-7018

Image from Unsplash 

When to Consider Arranging Care for an Older Parent

As your parents age, you’ll find that their needs change and their ability to care for themselves diminishes. Many people in Colorado find themselves in a situation where one parent remains mostly self-sufficient, and the other requires nursing home care. If you approach the situation strategically and are diligent about evaluating potential options, you can find a safe and comfortable solution for both your parents.

For more information and care options, visit Amber Personal Care.

How to Know If a Parent Needs Assisted Living Services

Since older people can be resistant to the idea of assisted living care, it may be unrealistic to expect them to pursue the option themselves. If one of your parents has become particularly dependent on the other for everyday tasks, mobility, hygiene, or health-related needs, it’s probably time to consider bringing in outside help.

Nursing Home Care Can Improve Quality of Life for the Independent Parent

If your parents are still together, and one is reliant on the other, this situation can quickly become very stressful for the more independent parent. While they may be mobile, their own physical abilities might be on the decline, and having to care for a less-capable or even immobile partner on top of their own needs can have negative effects on their health and quality of life. However, the more physically capable parent may be resistant to placing their significant other in nursing home care for a variety of reasons, so it’s important to talk to them and help them understand their options.

Options for New Living Arrangements

One parent entering into assisted living in Colorado doesn’t mean they have to separate from their partner. Many assisted living communities offer companion suites. Downsizing is also an option if only one of them is going to move.

At-Home Care Is Possible

If an assisted living community doesn’t seem right for your parent, you can also explore options for at-home care. Nurses can visit each day between scheduled hours to help your loved one handle necessary tasks involving personal hygiene, nutrition, cleaning, and dressing. This option also helps to take some of the strain off of the parent who doesn’t need in-home nursing care.

How to Cover the Costs

Nursing home care in Colorado can be particularly expensive, and many families aren’t sure how they’ll cover the costs. Aside from insurance coverage, there are some options to help reduce the expenses and make the monthly fees more realistic. One option that many older people explore is renting out their homes. If your parent is a homeowner, they can become a landlord while living in an assisted living community. Being a landlord takes time and money due to the need for property maintenance and the ability to respond to tenant grievances, so you should consider whether that’s realistic for your situation. Property management companies can help with the monthly rent collection and maintenance coordination.

Considering a Nursing Home

While nursing homes can be great options for aging seniors in Colorado who need daily care, they aren’t for everyone, so be sure to vet potential communities. Remember, your parents have options that can keep them together if desired, there are alternative ways to pay for nursing home care, and at-home care from Amber Personal Care is a potential alternative.

Mental Health for Seniors During the Pandemic: Part 2

Many home care service providers have reported that seniors are feeling the burden of isolation. Being away from families, friends and personal interaction is difficult. Additionally, senior’s lifestyles were disturbed during the COVID-19 affected period, especially those with mobility issues. Seniors felt safer and more confident by having trusted caregivers by their side.

We interviewed seniors, Charlie and Karen, to get a first-hand account of their experience with COVID-19 and mental health. Below is a transcript of the interview.

How did you feel when you heard about the COVID 19 hitting Colorado and how did you react to it?

(Karen) How did I feel about it? It made me very nervous because we were the likely category to possibly get it. And we didn’t. And no one in this building at where we live has gotten it, so that is really good. And part of it was because of the, you know, restrictions that they had, and Amber had, and etcetera. So it was kinda scary- it was really scary. 

(Charlie) I really didn’t know how to feel about it because a couple years ago we had an issue with this and it seemed like it came and went. So we didn’t know right away what was going to happen other than we felt isolated, I guess. And I think probably everybody in this building- everybody everywhere felt isolated. 

As we’ve mentioned before, in terms of your mental health, what aspects of your life were affected that caused positive or negative changes?

(Karen) I think that probably negative was that, which I said, we didn’t know what was going on. And we couldn’t see our friends, we couldn’t see our relatives that came in, and that kind of thing. Positive was that everyone here seemed to be going along with it you know. It wasn’t like, you know, they were grumping all the time or anything like that. But they seemed to know it was the best for all of us to, you know, follow the directions, follow the guidelines, etcetera. Also there were some negatives in terms of food, and in terms of not being able to go to the dining room and that kind of thing.

(Charlie) And we haven’t been able to go to church in four months. Because of our conditions with, me, I had a hip replacement and I was in the hospital twice. Karen cannot handle going by herself and so that has been a loss for us. 

(Karen) That’s true. Because we go every Sunday. 

What does it mean to you, to have Jenny and Danielle during that time here with you?

(Karen) Oh they have been wonderful.

(Charlie) They’ve become part of our family. They know the code, they walk in, they just do the stuff, and they say “how’re you doing, what do you want today”. And yeah, they are unique.

(Karen) They are great! They are very good. Not only them, but also the people who drive me, you know, to my therapy and that type of thing. Because I can’t drive. I really think I could drive, but I can’t get the wheelchair in the car. 

(Charlie) It’s taken a lot of the burden off me because I was trying to run her to different places and everything and with some of the physical things that I have going wrong, it was just like always in a rush and nothing would ever quite heal. And then I had to drive. And had to do this or that. And I like my little artsy things and I wasn’t doing them. And that was mentaly bad health right there. Unable to do them.

(Karen) It was.

Do you feel, with having Jenny and Danielle here during the lockdown, that it improved your mental health rather than if they weren’t allowed to be in the building? Do you think it would’ve been different?

(Charlie) Yes.

(Karen). Yes. It helped me a lot I think because they are outside people and we can talk to them and we can, you know, have a conversation. And it’s not just with the two of us because that’s pretty boring, frankly. 

(Charlie) And they are very intuitive. They know by the expressions we have or by what’s going on, they ask the right questions and they go and they suggest certain things: “could we do this and this and this for you?”. I never knew what it was like, on a king size bed, to fold a sheet with a back problem. They can do things like that and take it. I would just be out of my mind trying to do them. So very positive.

Mental Health for Seniors During the Pandemic – Part 1

Social distancing, once a phrase only heard of in science fiction films, has now become our everyday reality. While social distancing helps stop the spread of COVID-19, it can have some negative mental health consequences, especially for seniors.  

Since seniors are at higher risk for negative outcomes from COVID-19, they are more likely to self-restrict their activities and interactions. According to the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry, this self-restriction can lead to isolation and loneliness, which often result in increased anxiety, depression, and chronic stress.  

It’s important to be aware of these effects and encourage activities that promote positive well-being. Here are 3 ways to support the mental health of your seniors:  

  1. Take walks. Physical activity has been shown to decrease feelings of loneliness and promote well-being in older adults. A recent study in the National Institute of Health found that seniors engaged in walking groups had decreased anxiety and depression. Encourage the seniors in your life to engage in daily walks. It’s an easy and effective way to counter the negative effects of social distancing. 
  1. Stay in contact. One of the biggest causes of loneliness is fewer interactions with loved ones and friends. Reaching out to family and friends is a great way to help alleviate the stresses of social distancing. Try teaching the seniors in your life about using technology to connect with you. The American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry has found that social distancing has actually led to seniors increased comfortability using technology.  
  1. Keep them involved in decision making. Loss of autonomy is another huge cause of loneliness and isolation. Often, seniors are not involved in the decisions made in their lives. This can be extremely distressing. According to the Asian Journal of Psychiatry, in order to preserve seniors’ autonomy, respect and dignity, caregivers should give seniors an active role in the decision-making process.  

To help the seniors in your life during these unprecedented social-distancing times, encourage physical activity, stay in contact, and keep them involved in decision making. At the end of the day, this situation is temporary and if you promote positive well-being to the seniors in your life, we will get through these times.