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Avalon Memory Care

At Avalon Memory Care, your loved one will always receive compassionate care focused on supporting their dignity and quality of life, 24/7.

Top 7 Reasons to Receive the Covid-19 Vaccine

As Avalon actively rolls out the Covid-19 vaccine to our residents and staff, there are many seniors still living at home who haven’t yet received it.  While a poll done by AARP shows that older adults are warming up to the idea of receiving the vaccine many of them still have questions. Healthcare professionals understand everyone has a different comfort level, yet there is a unison voice that is loud and clear coming from the medical community encouraging seniors to get the vaccination immediately. Here are the top 7 reasons to roll up your sleeve: All Covid-19 vaccines currently available in the U.S. have proven to be highly effective at preventing Covid-19. Clinical trials are showing that if you get the vaccine and yet still fall into that very low percentage who contract Covid-19, it may also prevent you from becoming seriously ill. Getting the vaccine not only protects you but protects others around you. Preventing Covid-19 means avoiding a potential life-threatening experience and long-term complications. Currently no one knows how the virus will affect them. Receiving the vaccine will NOT cause you to get the virus. Temporary side effects of the vaccine, like injection site pain, fatigue, headache, muscle pain, chills, joint pain and fever, affect 10-15% of those who have received the vaccine. However, the Centers for Disease Control found that those over 65 experienced fewer side effects. Note: If you have a history of severe allergic reactions to other vaccines, the agency advises to ask your doctor if you should get a COVID-19 vaccine. Perhaps the biggest reason to receive the Covid-19 vaccine is to be able to hug those we love Medical experts estimate it will take 70%-90% of us getting [...]

By |2021-02-17T13:12:22-06:00February 17th, 2021|Categories: Avalon Memory Care, Senior Health|0 Comments

Avalon Cultivates a Family-Like Environment

There are so many emotions around a decision to move a loved one to memory care. By the time a person with dementia reaches the point that extra care is required, chances are they’ve spent a lifetime taking care of their family and participating as an active citizen in their community. At Avalon Memory Care, we have always believed that all seniors with dementia deserve more than mediocre care.  We believe they deserve to live comfortably in a home-like environment that cultivates a close-knit community.  We believe that caring for them with love, positive energy, and meeting them at whatever level of support they need is not only the right thing to do but it is a life they’ve earned through decades of caregiving to others. The memory care environment we create at Avalon is critical to providing a level of comfort for families and care for our residents.  Our community becomes your loved one’s cozy home designed with private rooms and common areas – all that mimic the look and feel of living within a typical home. When they need some time to themselves, our residents will find the soothing privacy they deserve in their own spacious rooms, which they can furnish and style to their personal desire. One of the most important components of Avalon Memory Care however are the caregivers and the other residents they interact with.  Our residents get to know each other and, yes, even find new friendships enabling a family-like community to develop naturally.  Our team of 24/7 caregivers work together to fully get to know your loved one and develop a care plan just for them.  These exceptionally warm and compassionate individuals want to meet your loved one [...]

By |2021-02-03T09:28:45-06:00February 3rd, 2021|Categories: Avalon Memory Care|0 Comments

Dementia and the Holidays Top 10 Tips

At a time when most of us are stringing lights, trimming trees and jingling the bells, our friends and family diagnosed with dementia may be struggling to understand it all.  December can be an exceptionally stressful month for people living with dementia, even in typical years. Adding the social isolation required to avoid a virus running rampant in the land adds another element to the weirdness and can make the holidays even more difficult. Not surprisingly, how to help people with dementia enjoy (or at least best tolerate) holiday celebrations is a common topic. So, we decided to conduct an informal survey of the advice experts give for helping people with dementia and their caregivers during the holidays. The results are a list of the greatest hits, best-of-the-best, top-ten dementia care tips and advice for the holidays. And, of course, since it’s still the time of COVID, we’ve also summarized some tips for celebrating during a pandemic. We surveyed advice from the Mayo Clinic, the Alzheimer’s Association, the National Institutes of Health, and several independent expert organizations. Top 10 Holiday Dementia Care Tips Plan and Prepare - Every organization and expert had a lot to say about the benefits of being prepared. Involve the person with dementia in preparation, or just let them be present while you prepare. Whether or not they participate, they will feel more a part of the celebration and be able to anticipate and reminisce. Focus on the activity, not the outcome. Create a safe and calming space for everyone to celebrate in. Decorate using simple decorations with no flashing lights or gaudy displays. Avoid clutter or rearranging furniture. Avoid lighted candles, fragile decorations, or any other hazardous decorations. Set up [...]

By |2020-12-17T14:17:47-06:00December 17th, 2020|Categories: Alzheimer's, Avalon Memory Care, Dementia, Memory Care, Senior Health|0 Comments

Is there anything good about dementia?

You’re probably thinking “what a strange question.” We all know that dementia presents daunting challenges for both caregivers and for people living with dementia. According to a study conducted by the National Institutes of Health, family caregivers of people with dementia have more anxiety, stress, and depression than non-caregivers, and caring for someone with dementia has more negative impacts than caring for other disorders. True. Though there is proof of a way to positively influence the experience. Good Experiences of Caregivers A huge body of research agrees that caring for people with dementia gets more and more difficult as the disease progresses. However, people who report better, more positive experiences and outcomes start with a different attitude and perception of what it is to care for people with dementia. Generally, caregivers who take a less traditional view of their role and the desired outcomes of their efforts reported a higher quality of life than other caregivers. In fact, 90% of them were more likely to report positive aspects of caregiving for those with dementia. Researcher and author Geofrey Tremont compared 41 of the most meaningful cases from a 1,000 case studies and found that “Most caregivers report some degree of satisfaction with providing care, including feeling needed and useful, feeling good about oneself, learning new skills, developing a positive attitude and appreciation for life, and strengthening relationships with others.” Good experiences of people with dementia. Life changes with dementia but can continue on in meaningful and sometimes surprising ways. One former musician who now has dementia recently became famous for improvising a beautiful composition on four notes that was later arranged for the London Philharmonic Orchestra. An interesting note: the part of the brain that [...]

By |2020-12-04T19:50:19-06:00November 20th, 2020|Categories: Alzheimer's, Avalon Memory Care, Dementia, Memory Care, Senior Health|0 Comments

You’ve Earned It: The Veterans Aid & Attendance Benefit

Where to start? Many veterans and spouses of veterans have little or no idea what benefits are available to them and how to apply for them. If that sounds like you or someone you know, call the Veteran’s Benefit Hotline at 800 827-1000. Thousands of VA Benefits are available for those people who are still serving, for those just transitioning out of the service, to those whose spouses served long ago, and for everyone in-between. Available benefits run the gamut from the obvious, like pension and healthcare benefits, to the less well known like financial support for your veteran owned small business and, of interest to most readers of our blog, the Veterans Aid & Attendance Benefit. As with many government-related benefits, there can be a lot of confusion and misconceptions surrounding it. We’ve broken down some of the most frequently asked questions (and answers) to help clarify and bring understanding to this helpful benefit. What Is the Aid & Attendance Benefit? The Aid & Attendance benefit, also known as “VA assisted living benefit,” “improved pension” or “veterans elder care benefits,” is a monetary benefit available to eligible veterans and their surviving spouses. It can be used to pay for home health care assistance, the cost of living in an assisted living community or other services that the individual needs for their everyday functioning. Who qualifies for the Aid & Attendance Benefit? If you currently receive a military pension and require help with ADLs (“Activities of Daily Living” such as eating, drinking, bathing, dressing, toileting, paying bills, homemaking, etc.), you may qualify for the benefit. To qualify, seniors must meet two requirements: a military-related requirement and a health-related requirement. First, the individual must be a [...]

By |2020-11-11T15:49:54-06:00November 11th, 2020|Categories: Alzheimer's, Avalon Memory Care, Dementia, Memory Care, Senior Health|0 Comments

Veterans Recognized on a New Wall of Honor

This month Avalon is excited to kick off a new tradition to honor residents who are veterans from the various branches of the military and first responders like police officers and fire fighters. In all Avalon communities, a Wall of Honor is going up in dining halls or other common areas as an expression of our gratitude for those residents who have served and sacrificed so much for our freedom and safety. We are asking current residents and new residents from every branch of service to share a photo in uniform which will be framed and displayed for proper recognition. Veterans Day 2020 marks the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II, the 70th anniversary of the beginning of the Korean War, and the 30th anniversary of both the end of the Panama Invasion and the beginning of Desert Shield. Veterans Day evolved from Armistice Day, which was proclaimed in 1919 by President Woodrow Wilson. Armistice is when warring parties agree to stop fighting; Armistice Day recognizes the end of World War One when hostilities ceased on the 11th day of the 11th month at the 11th hour. “We are so excited to start this new tradition at Avalon this year,” said Holly Bagwell, Community Liaison at Avalon Memory Care. The original goal was to have it up and running by Memorial Day, 2020 until COVID-19 caused the quarantine and lockdown from March to May. “We have so many veterans at all of our communities and especially here at Irving. It feels good to honor them this way.” Holly says going forward, veterans in the Avalon communities will be honored twice a year with a proper ceremony, recognition certificates and a celebratory breakfast. [...]

By |2020-11-06T08:47:52-06:00November 6th, 2020|Categories: Avalon Memory Care, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Should You Be Tested for Alzheimers?

Should You Be Tested for Alzheimers? The idea of being tested for Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia is often scary. Even if you or a loved one have noticed issues that don’t go away – like memory lapses, mood changes or difficulty using language – many of us hope that the issue will go away in time, or we simply put off getting tested because we don’t want to hear the news. While this is a natural reaction, experts say that it’s best to detect Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia as early as possible. There are medicines and treatments available on the market that can help slow and temporarily halt the progression of the disease, but they are most effective when treatment is begun during the early stages of the disease. It’s also possible that the symptoms you or your loved one are experiencing are not due to dementia at all, but are a side effect of medications, underlying illnesses, infections or other issues that can be treated. Whether that is the case or not, it is always a good idea to visit your doctor to determine the cause of any unusual or concerning symptoms before they get worse. There is no one specific test that is used to determine if you or a loved one have Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia. Instead, doctors will use a series of tests and exams to help make a diagnosis. While physicians can almost always determine if an individual’s issues are due to dementia, it may be difficult for them to pinpoint the exact type of dementia the individual has. It’s often wise to have another family member go with you or your loved [...]

By |2020-09-24T10:38:29-05:00September 8th, 2020|Categories: Alzheimer's, Avalon Memory Care, Memory Care, Senior Health|0 Comments

Is Memory Care the Right Choice During COVID-19?

Is Memory Care the Right Choice During COVID-19? The coronavirus pandemic has been, in a word, life-changing. Everyone’s life has been touched in some way to different extents, but perhaps the hardest-hit demographic are those with senior loved ones. This is especially true for family caregivers who care for a senior loved one with Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia. In a smaller sense, individuals whose loved ones reside in a memory care community like Avalon Memory Care also share a similar sense of worry and stress. Your family’s main priority is to keep your loved one safe and healthy. How is that possible in an enclosed community that’s filled with high-risk individuals? We want you to know, we understand. The idea of moving your loved one into a memory care community right now can seem scary and impossible. Even if your loved one is already in a memory care community, you may wish to pull them out so you can care for them at home in a safe, responsible manner. We at Avalon Memory Care will never stand in the way of family members doing what they think is best for their senior loved ones. However, we wanted to take this article to talk to you about how safe a memory care community can be, particularly at this time in our society. Although it may seem counterintuitive, individuals with memory issues can actually live more safely and with less risk at a community that’s been designed specifically for them.   Enhanced sanitization and health practices. As a commercial business – one that is dedicated to the care and safety of seniors with memory care – we are required to follow strict guidelines laid out by [...]

By |2020-09-24T10:33:00-05:00August 24th, 2020|Categories: Alzheimer's, Avalon Memory Care, Memory Care|0 Comments

Paying for Memory Care: Costs, Options and Resources

When you or a loved one are diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease or another form of dementia, there are many things to consider and plan for. One of the biggest concerns most seniors and their families have is paying for memory care. Since dementia is a progressive disease, the care that the individual will need increases as the disease progresses. Eventually, an individual with dementia will need around-the-clock care, which is usually administered – but not always – in a specialized memory care community like Avalon Memory Care. Nearly 5.5. million Americans are living with a form of dementia such as Alzheimer’s disease, Lewy Body dementia or frontotemporal dementia (FTD). This number is only expected to increase as the Baby Boomers continue to age and medical technology continues to extend our natural lifespans. And that means that the cost of memory care is likely to continue to increase for many American families. Currently, the worldwide cost of dementia care is approximately 1 trillion U.S. dollars. In other words, if dementia care were a country, it’s GDP would be the 17th highest in the world! That’s a lot of money being spent...and fortunately, there are a variety of programs available to help provide financial assistance, respite care and other forms of aid to help seniors, families and caregivers. At Avalon Memory Care, we understand very well the cost of providing memory care – financially, emotionally and mentally. Our goal is to not just be a home for your loved one, but also a resource for you and your family members. Part of that is providing the information you need to help you make a wise decision with regards to care. To that end, we’ve put together some helpful information [...]

By |2020-05-26T16:48:00-05:00May 26th, 2020|Categories: Alzheimer's, Avalon Memory Care, Memory Care|0 Comments

What to Do If You Think Your Mom Has Alzheimer’s

What to Do If You Think Your Mom Has Alzheimer’s When mom doesn’t appear to be as sharp as she once was, or seems to forget topics you just discussed, or begins to falsely accuse you of taking her things a red flag goes up.  Is this normal behavior for the aging or could she be suffering from Alzheimer’s or some other form of memory loss? People tend to second guess a call to her doctor, but you shouldn’t.  Proper care as early as possible is critical. There isn’t a cure, but there are some treatments that can help to slow a degenerative condition.  However, before you pick up the phone for professional advice make sure to document what you are seeing and hearing. Keep track of your observances for a short period of time. Observe and keep a written record of memory loss problems. Memory loss is a rather generic term to describe Alzheimer’s, but it doesn’t mean that’s the diagnosis.  We all experience a moment of memory loss here and there. It is when memory loss is so significant that it impairs everyday life when we need to take notice.  That’s when doctors begin to suspect someone needs dementia care. Here’s what you want to look for: Forgetting to go to appointments Forgetting how to navigate to a frequently visited destination Asking repeated information Poor judgment Problems managing money Forgetting task just done Difficulty completing familiar tasks Problems with planning Disorientation to time or place Withdrawal and other changes in personality Talk to your mom’s doctor. Adult children are often unsure about how best to get involved with an elderly parent’s healthcare or if they are violating HIPAA laws. Everyone in the U.S. has the [...]

By |2020-04-20T09:03:53-05:00April 20th, 2020|Categories: Alzheimer's, Avalon Memory Care, Memory Care|0 Comments

Avalon’s accelerated efforts to be one of the first in the state to secure access to the coronavirus vaccine is working. New and established residents and our staff here at Avalon are among the very first in line to receive the Covid-19 inoculation. Check back for more vaccine updates.