Category Archives: Senior Caregivers

"Aging in Place" Model Unrealistic

With the first of the 78 million Baby Boomers already reaching age 65 in 2011 and more on the way, the nation’s housing system will require new approaches to meet the “aging in place” demand of this swelling population.

Staying in one’s home not only reflects a “financially sensible housing option” for many seniors, but also helps give meaning to one’s life, says former Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Henry Cisneros in an op-ed for The Miami Herald.

ALFA, Partners To Tackle Elder Abuse

Those who work in care settings, have a unique opportunity to pick up on cues, elder advocates say, in the detection of abuse cases, with the Assisted Living Federation of America leading the charge toward this effort.

Despite hesitation to talk about elder abuse, it’s a growing problem that is plaguing older Americans and is gaining more attention in Washington on dual fronts-its causes and prevention.

Financial abuse alone amounts to $2.9 billion annually according to the Metlife Mature Market Institute, with other forms of fraud and abuse taking steep tolls as well.

“Elder abuse” can be many things, financial exploitation aside. It could be misuse of Power of Attorney, unsanitary living conditions, or lack of care when care is needed.


Assisted Living and Coming Technology Changes

Five Ways Robots Will Change Senior Housing

The Innovation Series is Brought to you by Care Innovations, a joint venture between Intel Corporation and GE, committed to creating technology-based solutions that give people confidence to live independently, wherever they are. With GE’s expertise in healthcare and Intel’s expertise in technology – we’re innovating to change the way care and solutions are delivered.

While you probably won’t see a fleet of robots staffing an independent or assisted living community in place of human caregivers in the near future, there are plenty of ways that robots are already making senior living more efficient-and are bound to do so in the coming years.

Considering the expected future capabilities of robots and the trajectory of their acceptance, here are a few key-and interrelated-areas robots will profoundly impact the senior housing industry.

Care Giver Supply to Drop as Boomers Age

AARP: Senior Caregiver Supply to Plummet as Boomers Age

Fewer older Americans will be able to remain living in their homes as they age, predicts AARP in a new report, as the number of potential caregivers shrinks dramatically compared to the coming boom in seniors at risk of needing long-term care.

“Family caregivers-including family members, partners, or close friends-are a key factor in the ability to remain in one’s home and in the community when disability strikes,” says the AARP Public Policy Institute in an Insight report. “More than two-thirds of Americans believe that they will be able to rely on their families to meet their [long-term services and supports] needs when they require help, but this belief may collide with the reality of dramatically shrinking availability of family caregivers.”

Dementia Meltdowns - How to React Safely

“He just blew up at me!” “She threw a tantrum and lost it!” When someone with dementia seems to turn angry or aggressive in an instant — shouting, becoming upset, pushing you away — this meltdown behavior is known as a “catastrophic reaction.” It’s an emotional outburst borne of fear, stress, or other suddenly overwhelming emotions. And it’s not uncommon behavior for moderate-stage dementia.

How to deal with this scenario:

If it happens to you, don’t panic. Retreat. Wait a few minutes for the person to calm down — it’s harder for your loved one to process messages (even your kind, calm ones) when he or she is emotionally “hot.”

Dementia Tip: Non-Verbal Pain Signals

Be a Pain Detective: 3 Wordless Ways Pain Is Expressed

By moderate-stage dementia, caregivers have to become pain detectives. That’s because memory loss and other thinking changes can make it hard for someone with the disease to accurately tell you about episodes of pain, or even (strange as it may sound) to remember the pain when asked about it. Pain control is important both for quality of life and because pain can worsen dementia symptoms.

Here’s how to recognize pain, without words:

Five Fastener-Friendly Clothes for People With Moderate Dementia

By Paula Spencer Scott, senior editor

In moderate dementia, it can be challenging for the person to remember how to work hooks and zippers, or to physically manipulate the small fasteners. So getting dressed will go more quickly and be less frustrating if you can simplify the number of fasteners to contend with.

Try these five easy wardrobe changes:

How to Keep Someone With Alzheimer's or Other Dementias Busy and Active

How to Keep Someone With Alzheimer’s or Other Dementias Busy and Active

By Paula Spencer Scott, senior editor

Keeping busy stimulates the brains of people with dementia while boosting a sense of usefulness and accomplishment. But they lose the ability to select satisfying activities and follow through on them — so you need to initiate things to do. Too much idle time can make anyone feel lonely and unproductive, raising the risk of depression, agitation, and anger.


Insights in Talking to Someone with Dementia

How to Talk to Someone With Dementia: New Insights

By Paula Spencer Scott, senior editor

People with dementia remember more than it may appear, says a small but interesting new study from the UK’s University of Dundee. All knowledge isn’t lost forever, as it may appear when the person is asked something and blanks on a correct response. That knowledge may be retrieved if the person is asked questions in the right way. The researchers found that when subjects were asked the meaning of words, they often couldn’t say. But when the same information was asked in different ways, with more context, they often did remember.

Some related tips on how to talk to someone with dementia to boost their understanding:

Need for In Home Care Growing

Research shows that at least 70 percent of people over 65 will need long term care services at some point in their lifetime. Although while most people think of long term care as impacting only those in senior years, 40 percent of people currently receiving long term care services are ages 18 to 64.2

The Genworth 2013 Cost of Care Survey can help families evaluate options to address the increasing cost of long term care. For the tenth consecutive year, Genworth has surveyed the cost of long term care across the U.S. to help Americans appropriately plan for the potential cost of this type of care in their preferred location and setting. The most comprehensive study of its kind, Genworth’s 2013 Cost of Care Survey, conducted by CareScout®, covers nearly 15,300 long term care providers in 437 regions nationwide.


View the Genworth 2013Cost of Care Survey.