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In Their Own Words Blog

Autumn Pointe residents, friends, family and staff share things that make this community unique.

Elderly Mother Daughter walk

Activities and Healthy Tips for Seniors to Stay Cool in the Heat

By Autumn Pointe,
August 30, 2019
Summer is a season most people look forward to in Nebraska. Our state is not short of things to do such as grilling, swimming, camping, hiking, and festivals, and while we soak up the milder temperatures and sunshine, older adults are particularly at risk for heat-related illnesses such as heatstroke. According to the Center for Disease Control, older adults are much more likely to become dehydrated. In fact, 36% of heat-related deaths in the United States were among people over the age of 65. Older adults do not adjust as well to sudden and extreme temperatures, or chronic medical conditions can actually alter their body’s response to heat. Here are some tips to consider when spending time outdoors with an older adult this summer.  Drink plenty of water It goes without saying for any age group, but especially seniors, if you are spending time outdoors in the summer be sure to take an insulated bottle of cold water with. Try to remember to drink throughout the day and not just when you are thirsty when it might be too late.  Eat snacks When it’s hot outside sometimes older adults don’t feel very hungry but it’s important to remember to eat throughout the day to prevent feeling dizzy from the heat. Consider cool snacks such as grapes,, cheese, cut up watermelon, celery, and other veggies to snack on throughout the day. Keep your snacks cool with an insulated refrigerator bag and an ice pack.  Wear lightweight clothing Light-colored and breathable fabric is best for a senior in the summer whether they are indoors or spending any time outside. Consider purchasing loose-fitting athletic clothing for your older adult so they are comfortable and cool.  Cool the area indoors Ensure your older adult is comfortable indoors by running fans, closing blinds, and running…
Travling Aging Parents Nebraska

Tips for Traveling with your Aging Parents

By Autumn Pointe,
August 13, 2019
Having aging parents shouldn’t stop you from traveling with them. In fact, multi-generational travel offers benefits that weren’t available when you were younger. Seniors are likely to have more accessible free time and more money than when they were younger. But as your parents get older, new logistical considerations must be made before travel. The key to traveling with seniors is to prepare in well in advance. Here are a few tips to follow to make sure your trip goes smoothly: Plan for everything: When traveling with seniors, anything can happen and it is good to be prepared. Seniors tend to have a laundry list of things they need to bring with, so prepare well in advance. Start with medical clearance. Check with a medical professional to see if your parent is healthy enough to be traveling. Don’t forget medications and medical paperwork, as that may come in handy. For air travel, consider longer connection times and arranging ground transport at the airport for added convenience.  Find a trip for everyone - Arranging a vacation that has activities for everyone is crucial. Constantly doing everything as a family can cause unneeded pressure and tension in your group. People should be able to decide to do their own thing. Appealing to everyone's needs is easy when everyone in the group is around the same age, but this is not always the case.  Find a trip where everyone will be happy.  Consider mobility - Just because you can walk all 18 holes of golf, doesn’t mean that your dad still can. When planning activities for your vacation, consider what your parents can handle. If they require a wheelchair, make sure you do your research on wheelchair accessibility.  Scheduling - Be sure to plan some downtime and to not overpack your schedule. Traveling…

The Importance of Community for Elderly Parents

By Autumn Pointe,
June 30, 2019
When looking for the right nursing home, you may be drawn to comfortable couches and fancy kitchens, but what’s even more crucial, and often under looked, is the community. Elderly community centers are equally as important to their way of life, as the atmosphere is. Get your loved one involved with their community and read below on how this could benefit you or your loved one. The Importance of Community for Older Adults Sense of Community: A community atmosphere can help build new relationships and strengthen existing ones, as well as strengthening old ones. By joining clubs, groups, and volunteering, your loved will have more meaningful relationships that will improve their way of life. Confidence Building: More friends and meaningful relationships can build confidence, along with willingness to try new things. They will get to meet people who are engaged in the same interests they are. With all of these sudden life changes, it’s crucial your loved one knows how special and loved they are. Confidence increases motivation, positive reinforcement, and quality of life. Mental Stimulation: Community activities also promote mental stimulation by providing learning activities, like art or book clubs. These everyday social interactions can reduce mental decline, decrease the risk of dementia, and even depression. At Autumn Pointe Assisted Living, we pride ourselves on having a close-knit, family atmosphere and encourage our residents to partake in activities that make them happy and fulfilled. Many of our staff and residents were raised in the area and have lived here for many years. Autumn Pointe is an extension of the home life our residents are used to, allowing them to stay in the same small community among the friends and family they’re familiar with. We strongly believe that each resident should be treated with dignity and respect so they are…
Daughter Elderly Mother Nebraska

Coming to terms with Aging Parents

By Autumn Pointe,
May 30, 2019
“Aging gracefully means being flexible, being open, allowing change, enjoying change and loving yourself.” ~ Wendy Whelan When it comes to life you’ll often hear people say how fast it goes, if you have children you know this is especially true. One moment it seems like you are changing diapers and the next moment you are dropping them off at college, walking them down the aisle at their wedding, and holding children of their own. While it can be difficult to watch your kids grow up, fly out of the nest, and get lives of their own, a shift often happens later on in life. The children have to come to terms with their aging parents. The process of becoming a decision maker for your parents can be emotionally taxing and stressful. Everyone is different including your needs, your parent’s needs, their current medical needs, and emotional health. After you’ve had time to consider your aging parent and their future, it’s important to keep certain things in mind before making a decision. Does your parent have mobility issues? When it comes to activities of daily living or (ADLs) does your parent need extra assistance? Is your parent suffering from dementia or Alzheimer's? Does your parent have special medical needs including prescription drug administration? Are you able to financially support your parent and care for them throughout the day? Would you receive peace of mind knowing they were cared for by compassionate and skilled staff members 24/7? Is your parent showing signs of decreased mood, irritability, and isolation? Is your parent able to enjoy outings and socialized events? When it comes to the proximity of a facility, how close would you like your senior parent to be to your own home, work, grandkids, etc.? Is your aging parent able to cook,…
Autumn Pointe Flowers

Springtime Activities for Seniors

By Autumn Pointe,
April 9, 2019
There is something magical about the turning of the seasons, especially spring. The birds are chirping, the buds of trees and flowers are starting to awaken and people are getting outside to enjoy the warmer temperatures. This sense of renewal is not only for the young, but the young at heart, and seniors can benefit greatly this time of year. Getting outside can not only improve cognitive function but mood and overall health. Here are some great tips for encouraging your special older adult to enjoy some springtime activities.   Go on a nature walk Whether your senior is wheelchair bound or is able to walk short distances, being outdoors can instantly boost mood. Research indicates that even short bursts of getting out in nature can have a multitude of benefits, including improving memory and a diminished sense of isolation. Consider talking about the things you see along the way or even turning it into a game. Print off a spring scavenger hunt and see who can find the most objects along the way. Spring cleaning There are little things as synonymous with spring than cleaning. If you are unable to spend some time outdoors or are looking for a project to do, why not tackle a little spring cleaning together? This can be as simple as a little dusting or maybe a deeper clean, furniture rearrangement, or new and fresh look. You can easily inject some spring in your senior’s living area with a new piece of art, freshly cut flowers, or pops of bright colors with accents. Consider hiring a photographer When was the last time you had a family photo? If you have a hard time thinking of a date, spring might be the ideal time to hire a photographer for some updated photos. Most photographers are willing…
Assisted Living NE

Choosing the Right Assisted Living for Your Loved One

By Autumn Pointe,
March 18, 2019
Choosing an assisted living facility for your loved one can be stressful. How do you know you’re choosing the right facility? Will they get the care they need? Will they be happy there? These are all common questions, and good ones at that. If you’re having a hard time knowing how to choose the right facility, try checking some of these things off the list. The Environment of the Facility As you enter the facility for the first time, how do you feel? Does it feel warm and welcoming? Could you see yourself being comfortable there? Is the location right for both you and your loved one? Try and answer them honestly, and really ask yourself if your family member would be happy there. Talk to other residents and get their opinions on it so you can get a better feel for the facility. Interior Features When looking at the physical features of the facility, make sure that all the proper safety precautions are being taken. Check for non-skid materials on the floor, easy to reach shelving, handrails in hallways and in stairwells, and if everything is clean and tidy. Medication and Care One of the biggest aspects of an assisted living facility is the type of care that’s available. Check to make sure your family member will be able to get all the assistance they need, including taking medication, bathing, getting dressed, cleaning, eating, and other basic tasks they may need to complete throughout the day. You can also check to make sure that there’s a thorough plan of action when it comes to the type of care your loved one should receive. Dining and Recreation You don’t want your loved one to feel like they’re trapped, which is why it’s important to make sure there are a variety…
Assisting Living Room

How to Make a Senior Living Apartment Feel Like Home

By Autumn Pointe,
February 25, 2019
What is it that makes a house a home? Many would argue that it’s the memories that you create in a space that transform an ordinary house into something you cherish forever. We at Autumn Pointe Senior Living are certainly not going to disagree with that beautiful and true sentiment! But there’s no denying that it’s the things you fill a house with that can make a space feel instantaneously stylish and comfortable. A home is a place where you can relax and enjoy yourself and the company of others. It’s a place where your unique personality and taste can instantly be defined based on the things you choose to surround yourself with. One of the things that people struggle with when it comes to moving into a senior living community is how to make their apartment feel like the home they occupied and loved for so long. For many families, incorporating key elements from the house into the apartment is a simple and effective transition that can transform their new space into a familiar and beloved one. Here are a few ways to decorate your loved one's apartment to make it feel like home. Bring What’s Important According to an exceptional blog on senior living, “A Place for Mom”, make sure you bring their favorite belongings, but remember the space is most likely a lot smaller than the family homes they are moving from. It’s easy to simultaneously recreate the look and ambiance of their current home’s decor while avoiding excess clutter in their new living space.   Think of How to Make it Cozy According to Apartment Therapy, color selection and keeping lighting a priority will have a big impact on your loved one’s satisfaction with their new apartment. We at Autumn Pointe completely agree with this statement.…
Active Seniors

How to Keep Aging Parents Active

By Autumn Pointe,
January 23, 2019
No one can deny that watching a loved one deteriorate, especially a parent, is a painful process. It is never easy to see someone you love so much, that has cared for you your entire life, suffer in any way. When they can’t walk across the living room as energetically as they once used to, or when their memory isn’t quite as sharp as it used to be, it’s easy to become saddened and discouraged. Although there is beauty in aging, it also often comes with unfortunate side effects, especially for families and friends. While it seems like a hopeless situation, there are plenty of things that you can currently be doing with your loved one to ensure that their physical and mental well-being and happiness remain intact for as long as possible. Here are a few of our favorite ways to keep your aging parents active: Spend Time in the Kitchen Focus on new recipes, techniques or ingredients by spending time in the kitchen together preparing a meal for you both to enjoy! Or, if you come from a family of cooks or bakers, consider dusting off old favorites — nostalgia and togetherness can be a powerful medicine. Get Some Exercise Don’t let the frigid winter weather stop you from finding ways to be physically active with your parent. Consider daily walks, chair exercise DVDs or, even, Wii video games, which offer low-impact fitness and sports games. Choose the exercise option that is best for your parent’s current state of mobility. Indulge in Favorite Pastimes Wherever you live, there are likely plenty of performances, concerts and festivals happening every week or month, many of which will appeal to you and your loved one. Not only are these fun to attend, but scheduling them creates something fun for you both…

Tips for Celebrating the Holidays with Aging Parents

By Autumn Pointe,
December 4, 2018
There are plenty of things to celebrate during the months of November and December: the fall season is in full swing and the autumn colors are especially breathtaking as the month of November arrives, and pretty soon, the ground will be covered with pristine snow as we enter December. But without a doubt, the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays surely make this the most wonderful time of the year. Every family has their special way of commemorating the holiday visits. We’d have to imagine that this time of year is filled with plenty of gatherings with family and friends. It’s a joyful time of year, and a true pleasure to spend this magical time with those that mean the most to you. But when it comes to having your loved one, who lives in a senior living facility, attend these gatherings, it’s easy to see that traditions and routines might not be what they always were. This holiday season, here are a few things to remember when your aging parents visit your home or spend the night to guarantee a joyful and relaxing celebration: Know What to Expect When it comes to celebrating the holidays with your beloved seniors, it’s best to not only expect the unexpected but to be as mentally prepared as possible. Think about your loved one's comfort and stamina and be prepared to modify some family traditions in order to reset pre-defined expectations.   Don’t Over-schedule Try to plan enough time to visit without filling the occasion with endless appointments and tasks. Schedule a couple extra days or make plans for another short visit soon after. Shorter, more frequent visits may be better if feasible, while long visits can be tiring and emotionally draining on all sides. Observe and Listen Having time during the holidays with your loved…
Talking memory loss

How to Talk to Your Parents About Memory Loss

By Autumn Pointe,
November 15, 2018
There are few things in life as painful as losing a parent. It’s nearly impossible to imagine your life without them; you rely on their comfort, and you have lived your whole life surrounded by their love and support. The thought of them departing this life is unbearable to their children and family. But a reality just as heartbreaking is losing your loved one while their physical presence is still here. Watching someone you love struggle with the challenges that come with a dementia or Alzheimer’s diagnosis is tragic. The thought of the cherished memories you have built together suddenly disappearing is frightening for all involved. During this difficult period, it’s important to talk to your parents about what is going on with them physically, and how you can work as a team to cope with the ongoing difficulties. Here are a few things to keep in mind when talking to your parents about their memory loss: Plan the Conversation If you witness memory or behavior changes, don't speak up at the moment. However well-meaning, blurting out your initial observations, may cause your loved one to get defensive, upset or withdrawn. Take the time to come up with a plan for how to have a respectful, productive conversation. Consider if your family member has personally noticed symptoms if they get the impression their memory loss is a natural part of aging, and who the best person in your family is to broach this difficult subject. Set the Scene Select a time when it’s guaranteed that your discussion won’t be rushed; this ensures that all possible concerns and questions are answered and the next steps can be properly planned. It’s a good idea to have the conversation shortly before a scheduled appointment with your loved one's primary care doctor or geriatrician.…