Tech Empowerment: How Seniors are Embracing and Transforming Their Lives with Technology

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In recent years, the world of technology has seen a huge shift as older adults in senior living communities actively embrace and harness its potential. This dynamic group, often affectionately referred to as "silver techies," is reshaping the landscape of senior living through the integration of innovative apps and technologies. Let’s take a look at the tools that are not just enhancing convenience; they're promoting independence, safety, and a higher quality of life for elderly residents. Smartphones & Tablets Among the many remarkable transformations in

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The Liberation of Downsizing for Seniors: Embracing New Beginnings

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Life is a journey marked by many different transitions and chapters, each telling its unique story. As time moves forward, many seniors come to a crossroads: the decision to downsize from their long-held family homes to more streamlined living spaces within a senior living community. While the prospect of downsizing might initially appear daunting, a closer look reveals a path rich in practical benefits and newfound freedom. This transition offers seniors and their families the chance to embrace change and discover a different type of freedom.

The Why Behind Downsizing

At the heart of the decision to downsize lies a careful evaluation of your living situation. A family home that once echoed with the laughter of children and hosted countless gatherings can gradually become impractical for your changing needs as you age. The upkeep of a larger property, from maintenance to cleaning, often turns into a burden that detracts from the joys of retirement. As you approach this stage of life, downsizing becomes an appealing solution.

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Riding the Tech Wave: How Seniors are Changing with the Digital Times

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In our modern world, technology has become a bridge between generations, connecting seniors to the digital age in a profound way. The term "silver surfers" aptly describes this dynamic group of older adults who are actively embracing technology to enrich their lives. As this demographic becomes more tech-savvy, their expectations and demands from technology have grown in tandem. Today we will discuss the connection between seniors and technology, exploring the reasons behind their changing expectations and the specific ways they're harnessing technology to improve their lives. Embracing a Digital Lifestyle The days of seniors shying away from technology are gone. Many are now plunging right into the digital world. Recognizing the many benefits of technology is what is driving this shift Seniors are eagerly adopting various devices and services that enhance their lives. Take smartphones and tablets, for instance. These devices have become popular among seniors due to their portable and convenient access to information, communication, and entertainment. User-friendly interfaces and adjustable font sizes ensure a comfortable experience for seniors. With these devices, seniors can stay connected with loved ones, explore the internet, read e-books, engage in games, and even delve into social media. Smart home devices and wearables are also gaining traction. Seniors can enjoy greater comfort, security, and convenience through devices that automate tasks and offer health insights with a simple voice command. The convenience of online shopping has not escaped seniors either as it allows them to shop from home, and online banking makes managing their finances simple and easy. Entertainment and cultural experiences have also expanded through technology. Seniors can now stream movies, and music, and even explore virtual museum tours. With each interaction, seniors are not only improving their lives but are also dispelling stereotypes about technology's reach. The Call for Better Communication and Connectivity Seniors have high expectations when it comes to communication and connectivity. They want easy ways to stay connected with loved ones and engage in meaningful interactions. Technology has answered this call, effectively reducing geographical distances and combating isolation, especially during times of crisis. The COVID-19 pandemic further accelerated the adoption of technology for communication. Video calling platforms like Skype, FaceTime, and Zoom became essential tools for maintaining connections. Seniors quickly recognized their value in bridging the physical gap between family and friends. These platforms allowed for face-to-face conversations, even across great distances. Messaging apps have also made a significant impact. Platforms like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger enable seniors to send text messages, voice recordings, and even share photos and videos. Social media platforms provide spaces for seniors to find and connect with old friends, join interest-based communities, and share experiences. By tapping into these digital resources, seniors remain socially connected and engaged. The Power of Technology in Health & Wellness Seniors are increasingly turning to technology to support their health. Health-tracking wearables, fitness apps, and telemedicine services are among their top choices. Seniors are seeking age-appropriate interfaces that cater to their unique needs. Wearable devices like smartwatches and fitness trackers have become companions for health-conscious seniors. These gadgets monitor vital signs, track physical activity, and even offer fall detection. The data collected can be shared with healthcare providers, leading to informed medical decisions. Fitness and nutrition apps provide tailored exercise routines, guided workouts, meal planning, and nutritional guidance. Seniors can stay active and track their dietary choices effortlessly. Telemedicine services offer virtual doctor consultations, allowing seniors to receive medical advice from the comfort of their homes. As seniors continue to explore technology, their expectations and demands grow. Technology empowers seniors to connect, learn, and lead fulfilling lives. Seniors who integrate technology into their lives and seek out environments that encourage its use are primed to thrive in today's digital world. Through technology, seniors are proving that age is no barrier to exploring new horizons and embracing the ever-changing landscape of the digital age. If you or an aging loved one would like to tap into the vast ocean of technological resources available today but need help learning how to use devices and services you can check for computer classes at your local library or senior center. Ashbridge Manor has a library on site complete with a computer and iPad station to help keep you connected with friends and family, as well as teach how to navigate the digital world. Or if you already know the basics and want to learn more consider taking online courses or enrolling in a computer course at your local community college. Learning more will give you the confidence and skills you need to take full advantage of the many benefits of technology for seniors. At Ashbridge Manor Senior Living we pride ourselves on creating an environment that enables seniors to lead a fulfilling, socially active lifestyle and independent lifestyle. When it’s time to transition to a senior living facility, contact our professional staff members and we can help make it easy. You can find us at 971 E. Lancaster Avenue in Downingtown, PA, call 610.269.8800, or contact us online for more information. Ask us about our move-in special!

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7 Enjoyable Activities for Seniors to Embrace the Summer Seaso

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As we head into the summer months, the arrival of warmer weather brings forth a lively atmosphere and countless opportunities for people of all ages to engage in enjoyable activities. For seniors, summer offers an ideal time to venture outdoors and partake in delightful pastimes that bring physical, mental, and emotional benefits. From absorbing vitamin D to enhancing mood and fostering social interaction, the summer presents an array of options for seniors to savor the joys of the outdoors. Let's explore a range of senior-friendly activities that are perfect for generating joy and creating cherished summer memories. 1. Beach Outings A day at the beach is a quintessential summer experience that can bring immense pleasure to seniors. The soothing sound of waves crashing, the warmth of the sun, and the sensation of sand beneath their feet create a serene ambiance. Whether it's admiring the view, taking a leisurely stroll along the shore, or building sandcastles with loved ones, the beach offers an abundance of ways for seniors to unwind and embrace the summer atmosphere. To ensure a safe and comfortable outing, it's important to choose beaches with accessible facilities and shaded areas. Sun protection, such as hats, sunscreen, and umbrellas, is essential to guard against excessive sun exposure. It's also important to stay hydrated and take breaks from the heat when needed. 2. Baseball Games Attending a baseball game is an ideal summer activity not only for young people but also for seniors. Many stadiums provide accessible seating options and facilities to accommodate seniors with special needs. Additionally, there are areas within the stadium where individuals can find respite from direct sunlight and heat. Watching a baseball game offers older adults an opportunity to relive cherished memories, engage in social interaction, and enjoy the excitement of the sport. The lively atmosphere creates an unforgettable experience, allowing seniors to feel connected to the community and share the thrill of the game with loved ones. 3. Nature Walks & Gardening Activities Summer provides a beautiful and tranquil backdrop for seniors to immerse themselves in the wonders of nature. Nature walks in local parks, botanical gardens, or nature reserves offer a serene and fulfilling experience. The sights, sounds, and scents of nature can be rejuvenating, allowing older adults to fully embrace the summer season. When necessary, choose locations with accessible paths and benches to accommodate mobility needs. For seniors with a green thumb, gardening activities provide a sense of purpose and gentle physical activity. Tending to potted plants, growing herbs or flowers in small garden beds, or participating in community garden projects are all wonderful ways to connect with nature and enjoy the therapeutic benefits of gardening. 4. Family Picnics & Cookouts Gathering with loved ones for a delightful picnic or cookout in the great outdoors is a special experience. These shared meals in the open air foster bonding, create lasting memories, and instill a sense of belonging. Choose scenic parks or outdoor spaces with accessible paths and facilities to ensure that everyone can fully participate. Encourage attendees to bring a delicious assortment of finger foods, sandwiches, fruits, and refreshing drinks or to prepare grill-worthy dishes. This is an opportune time to engage in light games, share stories, and relish the joy of being surrounded by loved ones. 5. Scenic Drives Taking a leisurely drive through picturesque landscapes is a fantastic way for seniors to appreciate the beauty of summer. Seek out scenic routes, countryside roads, or coastal drives that offer breathtaking views. Ensure that the vehicle is comfortable and safe, and plan regular stops to stretch and take in the surroundings. Involve seniors in the planning process by allowing them to choose their favorite destinations or landmarks. Scenic drives provide a serene and rejuvenating experience, allowing older adults to connect with nature and relish the wonders of the season from the comfort of the car. 6. Ice Cream Shop Excursions Indulging in a delicious ice cream treat on a warm summer day is an experience that transcends age. Ice cream shops evoke a sense of nostalgia for older adults and offer a wide variety of flavors to cater to different tastes. Many parlors also provide accessible seating options. Take a leisurely stroll to the ice cream shop, savor a cone or sundae, and delight in the sweet pleasure of this summer classic. It's not only a sensory delight but also an opportunity for seniors to engage in casual conversation and enjoy a leisurely outing. 7. Outdoor Concerts Outdoor concerts provide a fantastic opportunity for seniors to embrace the lively spirit of summer through the power of music. Many communities organize concerts in parks or open-air venues for people to enjoy live entertainment. Seniors can bring folding chairs or blankets to relax and immerse themselves in the music. From classical to jazz, folk, and local bands, there is a diverse range of musical genres to choose from. Listening to melodies under the open sky, surrounded by a cheerful crowd, creates a festive atmosphere that promotes fun, connection, and appreciation for the arts. At Ashbridge Manor Senior Living, we understand the importance of seniors enjoying the joys of summer. That's why we integrate these types of activities into daily living. Our community offers a range of amenities, including organized outings, social events, and specialized care, that seamlessly integrate summer activities. Be sure to check our Event Calendar for activities that you might enjoy this summer. We pride ourselves on creating an environment that enables seniors to lead a fulfilling, socially active lifestyle and independent lifestyle. When it’s time to transition to a senior living facility, contact our professional staff members and we can help make it easy. You can find us at 971 E. Lancaster Avenue in Downingtown, PA, call 610.269.8800, or contact us online for more information. Ask us about our move-in special!

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Discover The Hidden Benefits Of Moving To A  Senior Living Community

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As the baby boomer generation enters retirement, senior living communities have evolved into much more than just places to receive care and assistance. These communities have transformed into vibrant and engaging environments that offer numerous benefits for older adults. While many people are familiar with the convenience and support provided by senior living communities, several lesser-known advantages can greatly enhance seniors' lives. In this article, we will explore nine ways you might not have realized you could benefit from moving to a senior living community. 1. Making Meaningful Connections and Socializing Senior living communities provide an environment that fosters social engagement and the opportunity to form meaningful connections. By living in close proximity to neighbors and peers, residents have countless chances to meet new friends and participate in various group activities, outings, and events. Ashbridge Manor organizes clubs, interest groups, and social gatherings tailored to residents' preferences, enabling them to build strong relationships that help prevent feelings of isolation or loneliness. 2. Comprehensive Health and Wellness Services At Ashbridge Manor, we prioritize the well-being of our residents by offering a wide range of comprehensive health and wellness services. Our on-site healthcare professionals, including nurses and caregiving staff, provide regular check-ups, medication management, and assistance with daily living activities. We also have fitness centers, exercise classes, and wellness programs available to promote physical activity, mobility, and overall health in a safe and enjoyable way. 3. Maintenance-Free Living One of the often overlooked benefits of senior living communities is the liberation from the burdens of home maintenance. Seniors can finally say goodbye to the responsibilities of yard work, repairs, and household chores—from cleaning and fixing to mowing, shoveling, and raking. Our dedicated team of staff members takes care of these tasks, allowing residents to focus on enjoying their lives and pursuing their passions without the stress and physical demands associated with maintaining a home. 4. Delicious and Nutritious Dining Experience At Ashbridge Manor, we understand the importance of good food and shared mealtimes. Our community offers delicious and nutritious culinary options prepared by professional chefs and nutritionists. We create diverse menus tailored to residents' dietary needs and preferences. Regular communal dining fosters a sense of community, where residents can enjoy meals together and build connections. We also offer options for those who prefer a quieter mealtime. 5. Lifelong Learning Opportunities Ashbridge Manor Senior Living values lifelong learning and personal growth. We provide access to a variety of educational programs, classes, and workshops designed to stimulate residents' minds and expand their horizons. From art and music lessons to language courses and book clubs, we offer ample opportunities for residents to acquire new skills, pursue their passions, and engage in intellectually stimulating activities. Transportation is available for off-site activities as well. 6. Transportation Services and Excursions Maintaining independence and staying connected with the outside world is essential for a fulfilling life. Senior living communities address this by offering transportation services and organizing excursions. Residents can participate in trips to local attractions, shopping outings, visits to theaters or museums, and much more. Access to transportation services also makes it easier to manage medical appointments, ensuring that residents maintain their health and well-being to the fullest extent. 7. Enhanced Safety and Security Measures At Ashbridge Manor, the safety and security of our residents are of utmost importance. We have implemented enhanced safety measures, including secure entry systems, 24/7 surveillance, and trained staff available to respond to emergencies. Our community is designed with the mobility and safety needs of residents in mind, providing peace of mind for both residents and their families. Help is always just a call away. 8. Assistance with Daily Living Activities Senior living communities offer assisted living services to provide care and support for seniors with additional needs. Our trained staff members are available to assist with daily living activities, allowing residents to maintain their independence and quality of life. We provide support with tasks such as bathing, dressing, medication management, and mobility assistance while preserving residents' dignity and autonomy. 9. Recreational Amenities for an Active Lifestyle In addition to social engagement, Ashbridge Manor offers a wide range of recreational amenities to promote an active and fulfilling lifestyle. From swimming pools, walking trails, and fitness centers to game rooms, libraries, and craft studios, we provide various options for residents to stay active, pursue hobbies, and enjoy leisure time. Moving to Ashbridge Manor Senior Living offers far more benefits than many people may realize. Beyond the convenience and care, there are ample opportunities for social engagement, access to comprehensive health and wellness services, maintenance-free living, diverse culinary and dining options, lifelong learning, transportation services, enhanced safety and security, assistance with daily living activities, and expanded recreational amenities. At Ashbridge Manor Senior Living we pride ourselves on creating an environment that enables seniors to lead a fulfilling, socially active lifestyle and independent lifestyle. When it’s time to transition to a senior living facility, contact our professional staff members and we can help make it easy. You can find us at 971 E. Lancaster Avenue in Downingtown, PA, call 610.269.8800, or contact us online for more information. Ask us about our move-in special!

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Senior Community Living Offers Emotional And Mental Health Benefits

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It is estimated that around 20% of those aged 55 and older deal with some type of emotional or mental health concern. The most common of these are severe cognitive impairment, anxiety, and depression. Among these depression is the most prevalent and can cause impaired physical, mental, and social functioning in addition to personal distress and suffering. These problems are grossly overlooked and so many older adults go untreated, suffering in silence, which harms their quality of life. Many older adults find themselves isolated and lacking the sense of purpose they once had. This fuels a decline in mental and emotional health. They struggle to remain socially active and may not have many opportunities for human connection and interaction. This can lead to extreme loneliness and even more severe mental health concerns. A senior living community can give many older adults all of the things that they need to overcome these hurdles and be able to thrive both mentally and emotionally. Here are some of the emotional and mental perks of a senior living community that can help aging adults navigate this season of life.

  1. Sense Of Belonging- After a lifetime of working and raising a family the need to feel like you belong to something bigger than yourself does not just disappear when your family is grown and you retire. It’s essential to continue to feel helpful, needed, and connected. Living in a senior community provides a sense of community, belonging, and friendship with opportunities for socialization, companionship, and inclusion that banish those feelings of isolation and loneliness.
  2. Renewed Sense Of Purpose- During our lifetime we fulfill various roles such as child, sibling, parent, friend, spouse, and coworker. These all give us a profound sense of purpose. They give us the motivation to face the day and do something meaningful. Sometimes seniors lose this sense of purpose when they retire, their family grows up and moves away, and they lose their spouses and loved ones. Community living offers a space where seniors can regain that sense of purpose in their lives by developing new friendships with neighbors, joining clubs, attending events, and entertaining family and friends. This renewed sense of purpose that community life brings makes all the difference in an older adult’s emotional and mental well-being.
  3. Safety- A very common concern that many older adults have is that of safety, especially if they live alone. Worries arise about driving, remembering medications, falling, fires, and even intruders. These worries can cause significant anxiety that interferes with daily living. Being a part of a senior living community helps to eliminate those worries by providing a secure, comfortable environment with secure entrances and exits, alert and alarm systems, transportation, assistance with daily activities, and supportive staff to ensure all needs are met and residents are safe.
  4. Engagement And Socialization- Anyone living alone without easy access to social activities can fall into a daily routine of boredom and isolation, but this is a major mental health risk for seniors. It’s human nature to crave social engagement, and that need does not decrease with age. It’s vitally important for older adults to maintain an active social life. Senior living communities offer opportunities for healthy socialization every day with shared meals, activities, and scheduled trips and events. Socialization is part of the fabric of senior community living.
  5. Mental Health Support- As we age our brains have more difficulty regulating hormone levels, and so the effect of anxiety and worry can be greatly amplified. These dysregulated hormones can be detrimental long term affecting mental health and memory, and worsening depression. The resulting anxiety, depression, and loneliness contribute to loss of sleep, weight loss, mood swings, and even suicidal thoughts. Senior living communities provide not only a social support system but a team of trained staff as well which can help recognize symptoms of mental health conditions and provide necessary interventions to get seniors the professional mental and emotional health support that they need.

Making the mental and emotional health of the seniors in your life a priority is of utmost importance, especially if you or a loved one are feeling isolated or lonely. It’s never too late to consider whether community living could provide the benefits needed to overcome challenges and restore mental and emotional health. At Ashbridge Manor Senior Living we pride ourselves on creating an environment that enables seniors to lead a fulfilling, socially active lifestyle and independent lifestyle. When it’s time to transition to a senior living facility, contact our professional staff members and we can help make it easy. You can find us at 971 E. Lancaster Avenue in Downingtown, PA, call 610.269.8800, or contact us online for more information. Ask us about our move-in special!

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Step Into Spring With These Fun Activities For Seniors

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Winter is a tough time of year for seniors. Being cooped up inside for months takes its toll and affects both mental and physical well-being. But thankfully after a long, dark winter, there is the promise of springtime with more hours of sunshine and a much more appealing forecast. Now that spring is here it’s time to take advantage of the milder weather to get outdoors, soak up some vitamin D, and get some fresh air into your lungs. It’s also a great time to have a little fun. Here are some fun activities to help any older adult step into spring. Start A Stretch Routine After a long winter spent hibernating indoors, it's important for older adults to get their bodies moving again. A stretch routine may not be the first thing you think of that's a fun activity, but with the right mindset, it can be very enjoyable. As the days go warmer with more sunshine and blue skies it's good to take a new perspective. Stretching can be done pretty much anywhere and anytime, so use the call of spring to get outside in the fresh warm air to stretch it out. Not only does stretching help your body stay flexible performing stretching exercises regularly has other benefits as well. It can help relieve pain, improve circulation, reduce stress, improve self-confidence, increase independence, and provide an overall sense of well-being. This can be turned into a social event by asking some friends to join in the fun. Take a Hike Another way to get your body moving is to get out and enjoy all the lovely sights, sounds, and smells of springtime by taking a nature walk. Choose a park with a walking trail that's within your physical ability to navigate safely, lace up those walking shoes, and head out for a stroll. Being out in nature has many benefits including reduced stress, improved mood, better concentration, and sometimes it can even lower blood pressure. Invite friends or grandchildren to join you and take the opportunity to really have fun exploring nature together. If you have mobility limitations there are paved walking trails that are both walker and wheelchair accessible so you can still get out and enjoy the beautiful spring scenery. Plant Something Getting your hands into garden soil has been linked to some pretty incredible health benefits such as improved heart health, increased physical strength, improved mental well-being, and immune system regulation, just to name a few. Gardening is the favorite springtime activity of many looking to get outdoors and have fun. Whether you enjoy gardening in a group pretending your plants by yourself it's always fun to put seeds in the ground and watch them burst forth with new life. So get outside and start a small container garden or put some pretty flowers in a window box or on a sunny window sill. Go On a Picnic What is more fun than a springtime picnic? Whether you are packing a picnic lunch and heading to a nearby park or simply moving your dinner to a table outdoors it’s fun to grab some family or friends and enjoy a meal together outdoors. It’s even fun to dine solo on a blanket under a tree in the park with a good book. If there will be any children coming along be sure to bring some fun activities like bubbles, a ball, sidewalk chalk, or a frisbee. If your mobility level doesn’t allow for sitting on the ground find a park with a nice picnic table or bring some folding chairs along that you will be comfortable in, or simply picnic on your deck, patio, or courtyard. No matter the location a meal outdoors instills a childlike sense of fun. Pick Some Strawberries There’s no need to wait for fall to experience the fun of life on a farm. There’s more to do than pick apples or pumpkins. The peak season for strawberries is spring and chances are there will be a strawberry festival or pick-your-own strawberry farm somewhere near you. And the fun doesn’t end once the strawberries are picked. Then it’s time to have some fun in the kitchen with your fresh farm fare and whip up a batch of strawberry jam, a strawberry shortcake, strawberry pie, or any number of salads, baked goods, or smoothies. Build a Birdhouse or Bird Feeder Bird watching is a favorite pass time and hobby of many, and there’s no better time for it than in the spring when all the birds return to their summer nesting grounds. You can help attract them to your favorite outdoor spots by building and hanging a birdhouse and bird feeder. It will give you a fun and creative project to work on as well as give you the continuous joy of watching your feathered friends throughout the year. Whatever fun spring activities you choose make sure they bring you joy, get you outside, and get you moving. At Ashbridge Manor Senior Living we pride ourselves on creating an environment that enables seniors to lead a fulfilling, socially active lifestyle and independent lifestyle. When it’s time to transition to a senior living facility, contact our professional staff members and we can help make it easy. You can find us at 971 E. Lancaster Avenue in Downingtown, PA, call 610.269.8800, or contact us online for more information. Ask us about our move-in special!

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5 Important Tips To Help Seniors Do Their Spring Cleaning Safely

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Do your countertops look like a department store display of kitchen gadgets and small appliances? Do you have so much furniture lying around that your living room is looking more like a garage sale? If your answer is yes or you had to stop and think about it, it’s time for some spring cleaning and clutter removal. Spring is the season that inspires us to make changes and freshen up everything in our lives, get rid of junk, and make our homes clean, bright, and welcoming again. As you begin the task of spring cleaning it's important to keep safety first. Here are five tips to help seniors get their spring cleaning done safely.

  1. Clean out the medicine cabinet. The medicine cabinet can be a dangerous place if it’s not properly maintained. Some things to look for are medications without proper labels, old prescription medications that aren’t needed anymore, and prescription and over-the-counter medications that are past their expiration date. Some medications lose potency after they’ve expired, and some can potentially increase in potency or break down and become dangerous.  Properly dispose of any expired or discontinued medications as well as those without labels to prevent potentially life-threatening medication errors. And if medications are stored in the bathroom, move them to a cool, dark, dry place out of the reach of pets and visiting children. Bathrooms are too warm and humid to safely store medications there.
  2. Clear out the clutter. A cluttered environment with a lot of “stuff” lying around is a fall hazard. You can reduce the risk of tripping and falling by removing anything cluttering your walkways. This may include things like unnecessary furniture and unsecured throw rugs. Anything that keeps you from moving about your home freely needs to go. Place them in storage, donate them to a local charity, or place the items up for sale in a local consignment shop. Work through all of your rooms removing unneeded items and placing infrequently used appliances into storage. Leave only your most frequently used items out for easy access. Organize kitchen cabinets and clear the fridge and pantry of stale or outdated food while you’re at it.
  3. Create an emergency plan and post emergency numbers by the phone. Do you know what you need to do if you fall, someone tries to break into your home or you have an accident in the kitchen? Do you have all of your emergency numbers posted clearly by every phone and programmed into your speed dial? If you answered no, now is a great time to make sure that you understand how the emergency response system in your community works and how to access it. Get an emergency plan in place and post those important numbers clearly beside every telephone. It can be difficult to recall this information in an emergency.
  4. Do not attempt to move heavy objects or tackle hard-to-reach tasks by yourself. As we age it becomes easier for us to injure ourselves and more difficult for us to heal. Guard yourself against injuries by getting someone to help you move furniture or other heavy objects. And stay off of chairs and ladders. Ask for help changing light bulbs or cleaning those spots you can’t reach from the floor. Investing in lightweight, cordless cleaning tools can make many cleaning tasks easier and eliminate the hazard of tripping over cords strewn about.
  5. Check your smoke alarms, fire extinguishers, and emergency kit. Now is a good time to do a test to make sure smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are operating correctly and check fire extinguishers are easy to access, full, and not expired. And every home should have an emergency kit that should be checked at least twice per year and restocked as needed. An emergency kit should include things like a flashlight with fresh spare batteries, wound care items like bandaids, antibiotic ointment, bandages, scissors, and tape, basic medications such as pain reliever, allergy medication, digestive medications, protein bars, and water, and a current medication and contact list as well as at least a weeks supply of all current medications. It’s also a good idea to have a 3-7 day supply of non-perishable emergency food that doesn’t require cooking and a week's worth of drinking water on hand.

Following these tips can help seniors spring clean safely and stay prepared for any emergencies that might arise. Spring is the perfect time to tackle these tasks and make sure everything is in order when you need it. At Ashbridge Manor Senior Living we pride ourselves on creating an environment that enables seniors to lead a fulfilling, socially active lifestyle and independent lifestyle. When it’s time to transition to a senior living facility, contact our professional staff members and we can help make it easy. You can find us at 971 E. Lancaster Avenue in Downingtown, PA, call 610.269.8800, or contact us online for more information. Ask us about our move-in special!

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Creative Activities To Keep Senior’s Minds Active

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Winter can have a dramatic impact on the well-being of seniors. This time of year limits older adults’ options when it comes to outdoor activities due to cold temperatures and slick, unsafe conditions, but the weather can’t limit creativity. Engaging in creative activities in their daily lives is a great way for seniors to keep their minds active even when they can’t get outside as often as they’d like. And while the weather may be starting to warm, there are still a few more weeks of winter to get through before resuming a more active outdoor lifestyle in the spring, and focusing on the arts can help keep seniors' minds sharp. The advantages of keeping an aging adult’s hands and mind active and busy with creative activities should not be overlooked. Engaging in expressive artistic activities provides relaxation and stress management, provides sensory input, reduces boredom, promotes socialization, reduces feelings of anxiety and depression, and improves cognitive function, among other things. There are a number of ways to encourage creative expression in seniors that are compatible with their age, abilities, and their preferences. Here are some ideas that can help older adults tap into their artistic abilities and benefit from engaging in creative activities. Painting There’s nothing that gets those creative juices flowing quite like holding a brush in your hand in front of a blank canvas. Painting is an activity suitable for anyone of any artistic skill level from beginner to seasoned artists. Whether it’s signing up for an art class with friends or doing a paint-by-number at-home solo, creating a personal masterpiece is very rewarding. Textile Arts Knitting, crocheting, and quilting are forms of art that use textiles like yarn and fabric to create all manner of beautiful and useful things. These activities promote manual dexterity and help keep fine motor skills sharp. One of the most rewarding things about this type of activity is having a handmade item to gift to loved ones when the project is finished. What better activity to keep busy on a cold blustery day than knitting a warm blanket or stitching a cozy quilt? Creative Writing Putting a pen to paper and composing the written word is therapeutic in more ways than one. Not only does it engage the mind, but it also provides an outlet to express feelings and emotions that may be difficult to communicate to others. Writing poems, and short stories, recording family history, or even writing a novel are all great literary endeavors for seniors. Every senior has an important story to tell, and writing allows them to do it. Cooking And Baking We don’t often think of preparing food as being a creative activity, but it’s called culinary arts for a reason. Cooking and baking open the mind to creation, which is what creative activities are all about. Enrolling in a local cooking class or simply trying a new recipe several days each week is an excellent way to nourish both the mind and the body. Performing Arts It’s never too late to get involved in the performing arts. Music, dance, and theater all have something to offer seniors. Depending on physical ability seniors can learn to play an instrument, take a dance class, or try out for a community theater production. They could also organize and put on a production with their friends. Or if they don’t want to be on stage there are plenty of creative behind-the-scenes tasks such as working in wardrobe, scenery, lighting, and sound. There is a way for anyone to contribute to a performance, and every role provides a means of sharing one’s creativity with the world. At Ashbridge Manor Senior Living we pride ourselves on creating an environment that enables seniors to lead a fulfilling, socially active lifestyle and independent lifestyle. When it’s time to transition to a senior living facility, contact our professional staff members and we can help make it easy. You can find us at 971 E. Lancaster Avenue in Downingtown, PA, call 610.269.8800, or contact us online for more information. Ask us about our move-in special!

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Winter Safety- The Higher Risk of Hypothermia For Seniors

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Winter can be a difficult time for many seniors, and here in Pennsylvania, we get the gamut of winter weather with rain, sleet, snow, ice, and frigid winds. This winter has seen much of the country under record low temperatures and buried in snow. During harsh winter weather, it is very important for older adults to be aware of the increased  risk of hypothermia for seniors as well as know how to avoid the dangers associated with cold weather. Here are some of the ways that hypothermia can place unsuspecting seniors in danger and preventative measures that can be taken to keep them safe. Hypothermia 101- What It Is And What Causes It Hypo= less than normal and thermia= state of heat, so hypo+thermia= less than normal state of heat, or below normal temperature. When your body loses heat at a faster rate than heat can be produced it causes your body temperature to fall dangerously low creating the medical emergency of hypothermia. The average normal body temperature is about 98.6°F. When someone’s body temperature falls below 95°F hypothermia occurs. With the body temperature so low your body can’t work as it should. Everything slows down putting a strain on your heart, nervous system, and other organs. If hypothermia is left untreated or becomes too severe it will cause respiratory and cardiac failure and ultimately death. It really is that serious. You might think that being outside in the cold is the only way hypothermia can occur, but it can also happen inside a very cold house. Seniors typically have a more difficult time regulating their body temperature and staying warm, so if you add in side effects of medications that affect temperature or circulation, or an acute illness and it can make it even hard for an older person to maintain the proper body temperature, even in a room where everyone else is comfortable. Conditions such as hypothyroidism can contribute to the risk of hypothermia by causing a deficiency of the thyroid hormone that helps regulate your body temperature. Diabetes, blood pressure medications, venous insufficiency, and cardiovascular disease can hinder normal blood flow. Conditions that hinder mobility like arthritis and Parkinson’s disease can prevent seniors from being able to get out of the cold, put on more layers of clothing or properly cover themselves with blankets. Memory and cognitive issues can interfere with reasoning causing seniors to put themselves at risk by wearing clothing that is not well suited to the weather without even realizing it.   With all of these added risk factors, seniors and their caregivers must take precautions to prevent hypothermia from happening, know how to recognize the early signs, and learn how to treat hypothermia in an emergency situation and when to get medical help. The Warning Signs Of Hypothermia Any sign that a senior gives that their body temperature may be dropping below normal needs to be taken seriously and tended to immediately as hypothermia can progress very quickly in an older adult. Knowing the early warning signs and symptoms is critical. Shivering and chattering teeth are probably the most obvious and often the first signs. Shivering is caused by your body creating the rapid contraction of muscles in an effort to produce more heat. If you notice a senior starting to shiver, take steps to help warm them up immediately. Here are some other signs that they may be experiencing a low body temperature.

  • Clumsiness
  • Drowsiness
  • Slow or slurred speech
  • Mumbling
  • Low energy
  • Change of mental status- confusion, sudden memory loss, or irritability
  • Cold, red skin or pale waxy skin

Call 911 immediately-

  • Uncontrollable, jerky movements
  • Weak or slow pulse
  • Slow or shallow breathing
  • Loss of consciousness

One of the most difficult things about hypothermia is that the person experiencing it typically is unaware of it because the symptoms set in and worsen gradually. The confusion that can occur with hypothermia further hinders the sufferer’s ability to recognize that something is wrong. So a senior experiencing hypothermia may not even realize that they are in danger and may not take any steps at all to get themselves warm. This is why prevention is of utmost importance in keeping seniors safe from the genuine dangers of hypothermia. First Aid For Hypothermia If you notice the warning signs of hypothermia soon enough the person may just need to be warmed up with a warm drink and some blankets, but if symptoms beyond being a bit cold and shivery have developed there could be more going on that you can’t see such as cardiac arrhythmias. Call for emergency medical help right away. While you are waiting the person should immediately be moved somewhere warmer if possible. Be gentle as jarring movements can trigger cardiac arrest. Cover the person with warm blankets and give them something warm to drink if they are alert and able to swallow. Avoid alcohol and caffeine. Do not attempt to warm them with a bath, by rubbing extremities, or with a heating pad. As a friend, family member, or caregiver you can help the seniors in your life be safe in cold weather by making sure they have adequate heat in their home, ensuring that they have plenty of warm clothing and blankets readily available that they can easily put on themselves, making sure they stay well hydrated, and check on them often, watching for signs of hypothermia. At Ashbridge Manor Senior Living we pride ourselves on creating a safe environment that enables seniors to lead a fulfilling, socially active, and independent lifestyle. When it’s time to transition to a senior living facility, contact our professional staff members and we can help make it easy. You can find us at 971 E. Lancaster Avenue in Downingtown, PA, call 610.269.8800, or contact us online for more information. Ask us about our move-in special!

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