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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.

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 |2020-11-20T15:08:58-06:00November 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

Top 10 Things to Consider Before you Purchase Long-Term Care Insurance

Should I get long-term care insurance? Pros and cons of a common option to pay for senior living Long-term Care Insurance covers the costs of prolonged health care services for chronic illnesses, disabilities or conditions that leave a person requiring daily assistance. It can fill gaps in coverage from employer-based health plans or private health insurance policies, and it covers ongoing long-term care while Medicare does not. Where can I use it? Most LTC insurance policies cover care in a wide range of settings, including the policyholder’s home, adult day care centers, assisted living, memory care and nursing homes. Many policies also help cover the costs of modifying a home to make it more accessible. Do I need it? While it can be a financial lifeline for some policyholders, long-term care insurance can be a significant expense - especially purchased later in life -- and isn’t the best option for every case. Here are some things to take into consideration: What are the upsides? Senior care can be expensive and can burn through a person’s savings very quickly. Having a policy that covers some or all of these costs can help a senior keep a nest egg intact and stay financially independent. Having insurance may also give a senior more options for long-term care, including choices that Medicaid does not cover. A long-term care policy can’t be canceled because of the policyholder’s age, physical condition or mental health. Once started, policy will continue until the holder stops paying premiums or exhausts the benefits.   What are the downsides? Long-term care insurance premiums can be a big added expense, especially if budgets are tight. Some insurers have hiked premiums by double digits in the past -- [...]

By |2020-04-09T09:18:20-05:00April 9th, 2020|Categories: Avalon Memory Care, Senior Health, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Asking Avalon: Touring Our Memory Care Community

A few months ago, we wrote an overview of memory care communities and the questions to ask when you’re touring a community on behalf of a loved one with dementia. Today, we’d like to answer those questions to give you a picture of what life is like at our community. Without further ado, here are Avalon’s answers to your Memory Care FAQs. Safety and Staffing How is Avalon secured so that residents are safe? All the entries and exits of our memory care community are secured by magnetic locks. These locks are password protected and connected to the fire sprinkler system, In the event of a fire, the doors will automatically unlock, allowing for safe and easy exit. We also have a secured outdoor space that allows residents to enjoy sunshine and fresh air while avoiding the risk of wandering. What type of training does Avalon staff receive? Each member of our staff receives a minimum of 16 hours of training upon hiring, as well as an additional 6 hours of training per year. Junior members of our staff shadow more experienced staff members until they have demonstrated their ability to provide for all care needs and care levels. What is your staffing ratio during the day? (number of residents per caregiver) On average, there is one staff member for every five residents during the day. This can fluctuate depending on the care needs of the individuals. We’re very proud that our staff members are dedicated to one single property in order to better form relationships and understand the needs of their residents. We also have floating staff members who are available to add coverage and fill in as needed. What is the staffing ratio [...]

By |2020-01-28T18:53:16-06:00January 28th, 2020|Categories: Avalon Memory Care|0 Comments

Serving Those Who Have Served: Breaking Down the Veterans Aid & Attendance Benefit

If you or a loved one are a veteran in their senior years, you may be feeling overwhelmed at the cost of care as well as navigating your benefits. You may already be drawing a pension, but it's more than likely that the money you’re receiving isn’t enough to pay for long-term care like assisted living or memory care. The Veterans Aid and Attendance benefit is a pension that can help veterans on a limited income offset the costs of home health care, adult day care or assisted living or memory care communities. Approximately 25 percent of seniors today are eligible for this specific benefit, but only a small percentage of people are using it. 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 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? In order to qualify for the Aid & Attendance benefit, seniors must meet two requirements: a military-related requirement and a health-related requirement. First, the individual must be a veteran or the surviving spouse of a deceased eligible veteran. The person or their spouse must have served on active duty for at least 90 days, and at [...]

By |2019-11-12T19:27:21-06:00November 12th, 2019|Categories: Avalon Memory Care|0 Comments