08.25.10

Adult Family Homes

Posted in care at home, Elder Care, Elderly Diseases at 10:32 am by admin

No one likes to face the tough decision of what to do with mom or dad if they are unable to live alone and family members are not able to take them into their own home. But starting the decision process earlier rather than later will help you find the place best suited to your loved one, and will help them be a part of this important decision making process.

Most people are aware of nursing homes, assisted living communities, and retirement communities, listed in order of most to least support provided, but many are unaware of the adult family home option that may be appropriate for an individual who needs help with meals, cleaning, medicine administration, transportation, physical and daily routine assistance. Adult Family Homes generally offer more assistance than an assisted living facility, but less than a nursing home. Adult Family Homes are also a great option for someone who wants to have the sense of family by sharing a home with others. [ad#ad-1]

What are Adult Family Homes

Adult Family Homes are simply houses in residential areas which are licensed to provide room and board for up to 6 senior residents. Normally these homes are operated by singles, families, or businesses. Some Adult Family Homes choose to hire outside personel such as nurses to come into the home and provide services on a regular basis.

Services Offered

Every Adult Family Home will vary, but most homes offer the security of an onsite person responsible for the safety of the residents and providing physical assistance as needed, meal service, medication administration, and nursing care for routine vital checks. Some homes offer specialized services for residents with specific ailments such as dementia, mental or physical disabilities, or neurological illnesses.

Adult Family Homes Pros and Cons

In spite of their negative association with group homes that have gotten a bad rap in the past, new laws and medicaid eligibility requirements have upped the standards for most adult family homes. The shift to specialized care also has improved the overall quality of care for many adult family homes. More homes are making family atmosphere a higher priority by offering more family-style activities and living accommodations and policies. Many seniors appreciate the warm family atmosphere found in these smaller, tight-knit house communities . They also enjoy the fact that they can receive the extra care that they need, and don’t have to be a burden to family members.

Choosing a suitable Adult Family Home

Find a list of all adult family homes in your region. Be sure that their required licensing is up-to-date. Decide what specialized services you might need, and which accommodations you desire. Find out what specialized services each home offers that meet your wants and needs. If possible, bring your loved one with you to visit a few of the Adult Family Homes you’ve selected to meet some of the residents and find which location will be the best match, and what the atmosphere and other residents are like. If your loved one would like to keep a treasured pet, find out whether or not that home permits pets. There pet policy would be good to know too if pets or pet dander is a problem.

Adult Family Homes might be just the ticket for a senior needing some assistance and supervision and at the same time wanting to maintain independence from family. The family style residential atmosphere offered by adult family homes often provides a safe haven that suits many seniors to a T.

08.24.10

Two Simple Rules for Choosing a Nursing Home

Posted in Nursing home at 11:49 am by admin

Placing a loved one in a skilled nursing facility can never be an easy decision. Many middle aged sons and daughters swear off nursing homes altogether, promising that they will never make that choice for their parents. But then something happens: a diagnosis. A fall. A stroke. And suddenly the unthinkable becomes the most loving option.
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So what do you do if you are that family member? How do you make the best decision for your loved one? First, follow these two rules:

1) Research as much as you can

2) Experience it yourself and trust your gut!

Researching Nursing Homes

More than one and a half million Americans are nursing home patients. Nine out of ten of those are over sixty-five. Typically, residents need around the clock supervision, especially medical care. Unfortunately, many facilities have treated these senior citizens as if they are already dead! Rather than engaging and caring for their patients, these workers have babysat them.

There have been many high profile cases and undercover investigations of senior abuse and neglect in some nursing homes. And as ugly as those things are, there has been a silver lining: facilities have more public awareness and government oversight to answer to. The family of a patient now holds more power than ever before.

That power begins with doing research. Thanks to the power of the internet, and the freedom of information act, a family member can now look into past complaints, accusations, and lawsuits that have taken place at a given nursing home. They can follow a trail of smoke in order to avoid the fire. After all, who wants to put their loved one in a situation with a terrible history.
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It’s easy to get started with research. Medicare’s website allows you to view inspection reports and overall nursing home ratings so you can compare homes in your area. And you won’t have dig for information, either. These reports are detailed and specific.

Another great resource is FreeNursingHomeReports.com. On this site, you can search for nursing homes by city or county, read pertinent, and best of all, read the reviews and experiences from other individuals who have been involved with them in the past. There is nothing quite like a human testimonial to paint a picture of reality, either positive or negative.

Experiencing A Nursing Home Yourself

Once you have done pertinent research on the internet about the facilities in your area, you should be able to narrow down your choices significantly. When you factor in a facility’s reputation, cost, amenities and location, you will probably have a short list of possibilities. Now is the time to go and visit.

Do you schedule an event? I wouldn’t. Not at first anyway. Eventually you are going to need details, but for now, you need to have a gut check. Go ahead and drop in on the facility and take a stroll. What do you see? What do you hear? What does it smell like? Are patients being cared for? Do they appear happy? Why not strike up a conversation with a few patients and ask them how they like it? And after you’re there for a while, how do you feel? Is this a place you feel comfortable leaving your loved one?

If not, then cross it off your list. Chalk it up to Family Intuition. You remember mother’s intuition, right? Well, this is the same thing. If you are feeling uneasy and untrusting for some inexplicable reason, don’t ignore that. You have other homes on your list. Go check them out. This one will likely not work. Trust your gut.

Once you have made some unscheduled visits to some nursing homes that did not scare you, it’s good to go visit them again, this time with an appointment. This time, come armed with a list of questions and fire away. Nothing is off the table, so ask away. Financial concerns, medical issues, care concerns, everything. This is your family you are talking about. Don’t let them forget it!

The nursing home transition is probably never going to be pleasant, but it can, at least, be the right decision. it can be the kind experience you look back on with confidence, knowing you did the right thing in a tough situation. And you really can choose the right nursing home, if you do your research and trust your gut.
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08.23.10

Is it Better to Retire Close to Home?

Posted in Retirement, Senior Citizen at 11:09 am by admin

For many seniors, the prospect of retirement is an enticing thing. Turning 65 might signal the sad end of an era, but it can also allow seniors to do things they haven’t been able to do before, like travel. Seniors who live in cold climates often travel… to Arizona and Florida. And of course, you know the rest of the story: they don’t come back. The climate is too perfect, and the pace of life is just right.
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That raises an interesting dilemma for many elderly citizens who live near to their family, but who may want to retire in a different town. Would a permanent vacation to somewhere more comfortable outweigh the familial benefits of staying put?

For some, that’s an easy question. “I’ll be with the grandkids!” they say. Okay, that means staying in town. But for others, it’s not so easy. There could be strained relationship in the family, or another reason to avoid getting together.

Either way, it’s good to weigh the pros and cons of retiring with or near the family or retiring in a Retirement Center (or Independent Living Center).

Retiring Close to the Family

Pros:

  • You get to be near the grandchildren
  • The surroundings are familiar
  • There is safety in being with others
  • It is usually is cheaper (pooled resources with family, etc)

Cons:

  • No exercise facility, golf club, or other fine amenities
  • You’re still responsible for the upkeep of your home, or wherever you’re living
  • There’s sometimes an increased feeling of “getting in the way” of your family, who is in the middle of the hustle and bustle of everyday life. For many, this is a stressful, disappointing situation
  • Boredom. Now that you’re retired, you have lots of time on your hands. But your family is still going, going, and going. This can leave you, the retiree, feeling a little lonely and alot BORED!

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Retiring in a Retirement Community (or active Assisted Living Facility)

Pros

  • There are often really sweet facilities that are made for you and others who are your age.
  • The general upkeep and housework are often done by staff who live there.
  • There will be immediate, built in community with other seniors (new friends!)
  • It would give you a chance to have a totally fresh start instead of a slow finish.
  • There will likely a be a medical staff on call to help you with anything, just in case you need them.

Cons

  • Costs will likely be higher
  • Some seniors dislike change. There will be lots of change here.
  • Nobody enjoys packing up and moving out of their house.
  • Some seniors end up hating the retired lifestyle, the endless meals in restaurants, and the general wide open days. If there are no relationships with others in the area, this can be a pretty un-fulfilling lifestyle.

So, is it better to retire with the family or in a retirement community? In all likelihood, the determining factor will be how close the family is. If you love being close to the family, no golf course is going to be able to take the place of that. But if there is a way to still see the family on a regular basis, a retirement community, with all the comfort and advantages they offer, may be just the thing to put a smile on your face.

Massage Therapy for Seniors

Posted in Assisted Living, Home Health Care at 11:07 am by admin

Massage therapy can give elderly citizens numerous benefits to minimize loneliness and boost their sense of wellness. This is often an overlooked option, which is unfortunate, because there simply aren’t many ways to help a person do that. Seniors in nursing homes are especially susceptible to decreased mobility and extreme loneliness, let alone those who are battling arthritis. In any of these cases, the art of massage therapy can be a wonderful gift.
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As age increases, activity decreases. We all know that. But we don’t often consider all the ailments that can arrive as a result of a more sedentary lifestyle. Massage therapy has the potential to minimize these affects. So why don’t more seniors receive massage therapy? Maybe the problem is that most people don’t understand it. That was the conclusion of one study by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork. Everyone has heard of massage therapy, but too many people have weird misconceptions of it, so they never consider it as a viable option for themselves, let alone for a loved one.

More impressively, recent studies now claim that massage therapy can be a tremendous help with Alzheimer’s patients. These seniors have proven to be less agitated and more calm. Their heart rate stays steadier, and they don’t have as many outbreaks. Why? Probably because there is real, tangible (yet untangle) power in human touch. Not only is it a great benefit to have an actual therapist massaging your sore muscles, but it helps to have a human make some kind of physical contact. This is most obvious in cases where orphans have been denied human touch, and their development is significantly stunted. Similarly, when an Alzheimer’s patient is calmed by the touch of another human, something just… happens.

And in regular cases with people whose mind and memory are intact, massage therapy has still shown tremendous benefits, namely energy boosts and stress reduction.

But even if you don’t buy into the intangible benefits of personal contact, you simply cannot deny the help a therapist can give to an arthritis patient, or someone losing muscle coordination. When you add it all up, massage therapy is a valid medical option that more people need to consider, especially for the seniors in their lives.
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Thankfully, more and more assisted living facilities are realizing the potential power in massage therapy. In some places, it is a continual option for residents. In other facilities, residents can make an appointment with a licensed therapist. Either way, if you are considering a change to senior housing, this is something you will want to ask about. A weekly check in with a therapist turn around a miserable week in thirty minutes flat. Even gardening can’t do that!

No matter what, aging will be difficult, and aches and pains will increase. That will never change. But if we could dull that some; if we could squeeze out the stress and loneliness and infuse a little bit of happy health, wouldn’t that be worth it?

Adult Day Care

Posted in Assisted Living, Assisted Living Facilities at 11:05 am by admin

Long term caregivers often find themselves needing someone to help stay with their loved one while they run errands, head to work, or just need a little down time. Often scrambling schedules with family or friends is not possible or desirable. Caregivers should consider another helpful and little-known alternative: adult day care.
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Adult day care is a service offered by non-profit, for-profit, and government agencies to provide respite care for seniors who are unable to be left alone during daytime hours. These services may be appropriate for seniors who can no longer structure their own daily activities, need social interaction and outside activities in a safe environment, or whose primary caregiver works outside the home. These services are also available for caregivers who need a break from round-the-clock care. Most centers provide care Monday through Friday during the daytime hours.

There are about 4,000 adult day care centers within the U.S. which offer a variety of benefits. The care center you choose may depend primarily on proximity to you, but also on the benefits offered to caregivers and their loved one: social interaction, educational activities, mental engagement, physical and mental health activities, meals and snacks, and specialized Alzheimer’s patient care and security.

Some caregivers are leery of leaving their loved one with anyone other than themselves, but after visiting their center of choice are pleasantly surprised. Planning ahead by locating a center you are comfortable with can elevate caregiver stress and burnout as well as any false feelings of guilt. Full time caregiving is an intense job, and caregivers need to give themselves permission to seek help and allow themselves worry-free down time. Many elderly people find they enjoy the chance to get out of the house, socialize with peers, and engage in enjoyable group exercise programs, reading groups, or discussion groups, even local outings and celebrations.
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Cost

The cost of adult day care centers varies by center and services offered, but usually ranges from $25 to $70 per day. This cost is not covered by Medicare, but should be covered or mostly covered by Medicaid providing the center is licensed or is a specialized Alzheimer’s care facility. Private insurances are more likely to cover adult day care center costs when licensed health care professionals are required. Check with your insurance to be sure. For uninsured clients, often centers set costs based on a sliding fee scale, so cost is determined by your income. Be sure to ask about scholarships or financial aid assistance.

Checking into the Adult Day Care Center

It’s always a good idea to call ahead before you find yourself in a bind. After locating a center near you, find out who owns the agency, whether it is licensed or certified (if required in your state), the hours and days of operation, what kind of adult clients they are equipped to handle (those with memory loss or mobility limitations), staff to client ratio, staff credentials, activities, programs, and meals offered.

To preserve your sense of well-being and peace of mind, you would be wise to consider turning to an adult day care center. Making a visit with your loved one will give you a feel for which facility will be a good fit for you and your loved one. This could be the support you need to keep yourself and your loved one in good mental, emotional, and physical health and allow you to continue to care for your loved one.

08.13.10

Affordable Senior Housing

Posted in Nursing home, Nursing home alternative at 9:12 am by admin

In today’s tough economy, many seniors and their families are looking for affordable senior housing. The section 202 program, implemented by the US Government, is designed to increase affordable senior housing in an attempt to meet the growing demand. This type of housing may be right for the senior who is 65 or older and still able to be independent, but not able to sustain mortgage or rent payments on a fixed or low income.
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Section 202 housing is run by non-profit organizations who receive funding from the US Government’s Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The total cost of living in these facilities is based on the individual’s income. These facilities usually also provide support services to senior residents such as community meals, housekeeping, and transportation. Services offered will vary by site.

Begin Your Search
Perhaps the most helpful tool in searching for section 202 housing is the Department of Housing and Urban Development website (http://www.hud.gov/apps/section8/index.cfm) which lists all section 202 housing facilities across the nation. Your first step is to decide where you would like to live, whether you want to stay in the same area or move someplace new. Plug in the location information to the HUD website, and it will provide a listing of all facilities in your chosen location.

Narrowing Your List
Once you have a list of housing locations ready, begin calling each facility and ask the following:

1. Is your facility still a part of the section 202 program?

The facilities and non-profit organizations running them must meet requirement to maintain their 202 status and receive government funding, so always check to make sure they are still actively a part of the section 2020 program. If the answer is yes, continue to #2. If no, continue to the next location on your list.
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2. Do you have any vacancies?

Section 202 housing is in high demand, so if you do find a vacancy, you will want to follow up on it right away since housing cannot be held open for you until you make your final decision. Scheduling an appointment as soon as possible to visit the facility immediately and asking what type of information will be necessary to bring with you will show the agency you are truly interested. If there are no vacancies in your preferred location, you may ask to be added to their waiting list.

3. What type of housing is available?

If handicap accessibility is required, be sure to ask specifically about it. Again because of the high demand for affordable senior housing, you may not be able to be too choosy about the type of housing and exact location. Vacancies are usually snapped up quickly.  

4. Do I need to make an appointment to view the facility?

Setting an appointment or making a visit as soon as possible is advisable since the vacancy may be filled up quickly.

5. What do I need to bring in order to complete my application?  

Section 202 housing requires residents to fill out an application and to show proof of low-income (pay stub or Social Security statement), proof of medical expenses (pharmacy or medical bills), proof of ability to live independently (a note from your doctor), and references from previous landlords. Make multiple copies of each of these documents if you are applying to several facilities.

It’s always a good idea to involve a friend or family member in the process of finding appropriate senior housing. In addition, there are HUD representatives available to tell you more about affordable senior housing and the section 202 program.

Because finding a vacancy in 202 housing is a challenge, it’s better to start your search earlier rather than later. Placing your name on waiting lists or securing a spot before your income runs out is of course advisable. With a little persistence, you can find affordable housing.

08.09.10

Over 55 RV and Mobile Communities

Posted in Elder Care, Elderly Care, Senior Citizen at 3:59 pm by admin

Many seniors reach retirement and find themselves either needing or wanting to downsize. Their family home may be larger than needed and the house and yard maintenance may be more than they want or are able to handle. Bustling active neighborhoods full of families may no longer hold the same appeal now that children have left the nest. Pensions or social security may limit seniors’ choices of retirement places, but there are still plenty of viable options for retiring seniors on a limited income. Seniors in this situation often decide to downsize and simplify, to find a place that suits them in this new phase of life. The following are a few living options that are structured specifically for seniors looking for a quiet community filled with other retirees.
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Recreational Vehicle (RV) communities
Free from work and family responsibilities, some retirees get an itch to travel and decide to downsize at he same time. Many retired couples decide to sell their current home, and hit the road in a RV, letting them travel in comfort and convenience. Many make these RV’s their home, charting new courses during the spring, fall, and summer, and flying south for the winter to settle into one of the many Seniors-only RV communities.

Many seniors-only RV communities are working to appeal to a higher income bracket of world traveling retirees, and create beautifully landscaped community with upscale amenities including fitness centers, swimming pools, and close proximity to a golf course. For those seniors with the traveling itch who have rejected the idea of being tied down to one specific retirement community these upscale, seniors-only RV communities hold a tremendous appeal.
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Seniors only mobile home communities
Other seniors wishing to downsize and settle down long term in a more welcoming climate and quieter community often choose a seniors-only mobile home community.

These over-55 communities often have strict rules to ensure their residents peace, quiet, and security. In many of these closed communities, children are not allowed, or visits are restricted to daytime hours, so check with the individual community if no overnights at grandma’s will be a deal breaker. Also, many of these communities have a no pet policy, so read the fine print or you might have to find a new home for Fido. Parties may also be out for those seniors who like to gather a crowd. However, some of these communities are set up with special areas or buildings for larger gatherings, and some have more family and pet friendly grounds and rules.

Choosing an RV or mobile home community
Determine what your needs and preferences are. Are you wanting to be mobile? Or just wanting to down size and find a quiet community to call home?

Cost is obviously a major determiner for many seniors who are living on pension or social security, so the kind of RV that is affordable may also determine the RV communities you might spend most of your time in, and is dependent on the amenitites each community offers. An on-line listing of seniors-only RV communities and the amenities they offer can be found athttp://www.bestguide-retirementcommunities.com/rvretirementparks.html.

Often single seniors opt to find a quiet mobile home community where they can develop friendships with other seniors. Some places prefer residents to have their own mobile home and rent the space, others have mobile homes for sale. The cost of moving a mobile home must be taken into consideration since it can get quite expensive. Some communities require an homeowner or membership fee which usually includes yard care, snowplowing (if applicable), water supply, waste disposal, access to the swimming pool, tennis court, golfing, or other amenities. Be sure to find out if these membership fees are refundable if you decide to leave, and whether or not a rental contract is required for a set time period.

Location
Where the RV or mobile home community is located is a huge decision maker for many seniors. Are you looking for a certain climate? Do you want to be close to family? Do you prefer to have easy access to shopping or to have a scenic view outside of town? Making a list of what is most important to you will help you determine which community will suit you the best.

Recommended communities
Seniors-only RV and mobile home communities generally try to set themselves apart from typical RV and mobile home communities, but finding a highly recommended site or community is advised. Seniors weigh in on their favorite or least preferred communities on this site: http://www.seniormobiles.com/index.php.

Some seniors look forward to the new sense of freedom retirement brings, others find the transition from home to mobile or community living difficult at first, but rewarding and satisfying in the end. Keeping in touch with friends, family, and former co-workers can ease this transition. Choosing a familiar city or visiting the new home and getting to know some community members several times before making your final decision will also help. Bringing those cherished keepsakes, pictures, and family heirlooms will also help make your new place more like home.

08.04.10

Seniors, Insurance, and Financial Security

Posted in Home Health Care, Insurance, Nursing home, Nursing home alternative at 4:00 pm by admin

American seniors who are financially savvy no longer keep their money in a sock under the mattress as in days gone by, but with a shaky economy, some may wonder if their hard-earned money’s still safe in the bank. My grandmother was one of those savvy seniors. She made it through the Great Depression without losing her shirt. Her advice rings in my ears now, “Divide up your assets in a variety of banks and investments, and make sure your bank is FDIC insured.“
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I believe my grandmother’s advice still rings true. Here are a few things senior citizens should know about FDIC insurance.
FDIC insured banks give their customers a guaranteed peace of mind that their hard-earned dollars will be safe in case of economic crisis that would cause the bank to fail. The FDIC has temporarily raised its maximum insured amount per depositor from $100,000 to $250,000 until January 1, 2014 when all account categories except IRAs and certain other retirement accounts will return to the previous maximum of $100,000.

This means that if you and your family has less than the maximum in all of your deposit accounts at the same FDIC insured bank, your money is fully insured. And if you have accounts in different insured banks, each bank insures those accounts up to the maximum. Meaning? Make sure your funds don’t exceed that maximum in any one bank. Divide your money into separately chartered banks, because each bank is separately insured. Your funds are fully insured by each bank up to the maximum even if the banks are affiliated (belong to the same parent company).

It’s possible that you may qualify for more than the maximum coverage (currently $250,000) at one insured bank if you have deposit accounts in different ownership categories. The most common consumer account categories are single ownership accounts, joint ownership accounts, self-directed retirement accounts (IRAs and Keogh accounts for which you choose how and where the money is deposited), and revocable trust accounts (the funds in this account pass to one or more named beneficiaries when the account owner dies). Deposits in different ownership categories are also separately insured. So rather than dividing funds among different banks, you could simply separate funds into different accounts that have separate ownership categories. So your single ownership account that exceeds the maximum coverage could be split off into another account or trust in the same bank that falls under a different ownership category. For example, you could funnel some of your funds into an IRA (Individual Retirement Account) or open a joint account with your spouse or another family member.
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A reduction of FDIC insurance coverage is possible in the case of a death or divorce in the family. This means that if two people own a joint account and one dies, the surviving owner might need to restructure his accounts so that he doesn’t exceed the maximum limit as the owner of two single ownership accounts within the same insured bank. The FDIC rules allow a 6-month grace period after a depositor’s death to give survivors or estate executives time to restructure accounts. But once the 6 months are over, you run the risk of having funds that are no longer insured by your bank. Also, check with your bank if you have a trust account, because for certain trust accounts, there is no grace period in the event of a beneficiary’s death or divorce.

Bank failures are fortunately fairly rare in this day and age, largely due to the strict financial strength and stability requirements for banking institutions to qualify as an FDIC insured institution. But in the rare instances of FDIC insured bank failure, no depositor has lost even a penny of FDIC-insured funds. If your bank did happen to go under, FDIC insurance would cover your deposit accounts completely including principal and accrued interest up to the maximum covered. If you did have deposits exceeding the maximum covered, you still might be able to recover some, or rarely, all of your uninsured funds. But this is usually a risk not worth taking.

In the unlikely event your bank does fail, the FDIC would issue payment promptly to you, the depositor, usually within a few days, and often by the next business day after your bank closes. Some competing insurance agencies have spread rumors that the FDIC doesn’t have adequate reserves to make payouts or that it takes years to make payments to insured depositors. This simply isn’t true. Recently the FDIC has increased its premiums for insured banks to ensure adequate reserves if there should be wide-spread bank failures.

Ultimately it is up to you to know what accounts and funds are insured by your bank, so ask! In economically unstable times, your best defense is to be aware and to make sure your hard-earned savings are protected.

Seniors and Cell Phones

Posted in elderly and education at 3:58 pm by admin

It has become cliche to assume that old people don’t “do” technology. They don’t go online, they only use a third of the options on their microwave, and they never did figure out how to program that old VCR. (Don’t even get started about TiVo.) But is the cliche true?
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Yes and no. We all know at least three seniors who are baffled by technologies we view as simple, and at least one who rejects the digital world with a great disdain. But don’t let them overshadow the ones who are embracing it.

Who are they? They are the ones right in front of you. The ones you wrote off as hopeless because they would not give Podcasting a fair shake. You never noticed the cell phone in their pockets, did you?

It has been a long march, but seniors are finally using mobile technology in great numbers. A recent study in Europe suggested that nine out of every ten senior citizens between the ages of sixty-five and seventy-five used a cell phone. Among those older, sixty percent still used one. Certainly, the American numbers will be lower because Europe’s digital networks came faster than those in the U.S. But even here, seniors have taken a liking to mobile phones, computing and even gaming.

Consider the most glaring example of all: The Nintendo Wii. It has been widely reported, even on this website, that the Nintendo Wii is popping up in Senior Centers, Retirement Villages, Nursing Homes and Assisted Living Communities all over the country. Elderly residents are rather charmed by the cool little box that lets them reinvent themselves in a digitized avatar. They might not be able to play racketball anymore, but they can take down their fellows in digital tennis.
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The fact that the Wii has taken off so well has amazed millions of people who assumed that elderly attitudes toward technology are shifting significantly. And while that may be partly true, they overlooked a rather obvious fact: Our seniors aren’t as old as we sometimes think they are.

Think about it. The boom of the media revolution began in the 1980‘s when Atari had already been wowing young people for years. MTV launched in the middle of that decade. Personal computers were starting to pop up as well. And 24/7 news outlets from CNN to ESPN were emerging as well. Today’s seventy year old was in his forties when those things happened. He was plenty young enough to be able to understand (at least on some level) the media revolution he was seeing.

Surely, the digital age has come at an alarming, almost obnoxious pace for many of our loved ones, especially those in their 80‘s and 90‘s. There is no reason we should try to “convert” them to twenty-first century-ites. But the ones in their 60’s and 70‘s who are talking on cell phones while beating their grandkids at Wii Bowling? They are already convinced. In fact, that same European study found that two out of every three American Senior citizens had a positive attitude toward modern technology.

Alas, a new day has dawned for our elderly loved ones. No, they are not downloading Matlock from Bittorrent sites yet (give them time…), but they are using cell phones to talk on and occasionally text, and they are discovering that email is slightly faster than traditional letter writing.

Give them a hand! Our Elders are getting younger!

Retired and Golfing

Posted in Retirement at 3:57 pm by admin

Many senior citizens love to golf. There is nothing new about this phenomenon. For decades, elderly men and women have taken to the greens when their careers have come to a close. Golf is the perfect leaser activity for a person who is slowing down but still enjoys a good time.
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What is a relatively new phenomenon is the boom of the”Golf Retirement Community.” In the past twenty years or so, thousands and thousands o retirees have decided to sell their homes and move into an independent living facility that caters to their favorite pastime. These facilities are often literally built around golf courses. This gives residents a stellar view in addition to their stellar hobby.

So why is the demand so much higher today? Well, for one thing, many seniors are retiring at younger ages. Those who stop working at 55 still have many active years left, and they want to take absolute, full advantage of those years. And in addition, even those who retire at 65 are, on average, much healthier than retirees two decades ago. Life expectancy continues to climb each year, as does the relative health of today’s seniors.

Most Golf Retirement Communities are being built in the retirement hotspots like Florida, Arizona, and the Carolinas. But Texas has joined the party also. Here is a small list of Golf Communities that are near notable cities in the Lone Star State.

The Bridges at Preston Crossing (Gunter, TX) – This luxurious Golf Community is located between Dallas and Tyler. The 18 hole golf course was designed by legendary champion Fred Couples. If you want to live here, expect large lots and a comfortable environment in a lovely East Texas town.

Havenwood at Hunters Crossing (New Braunfels, TX) – This gated golfing community offers lots from one to three acres of land. It is located in New Braunfels, just a short drive northeast of San Antonio.
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Comanche Trace (Kerrville, TX) – Just northwest of San Antonio, Comanche Trace offers spacious living in a beautiful setting. The golf course is a 27 Hole championship course, complete with a driving range and a luxurious clubhouse. The entire facility totals more than fifteen hundred acres, and includes a fitness center and a small private fishing lake. And community events are aplenty!

Bentwater on Lake Conroe (Montgomerey, TX) – If you want to be near Houston, TX, Bentwater might be your ticket. It’s located just north of Texas’ largest city, and is nestled between the beautiful Lake Conroe and Sam Houston National Forrest. The Golf is fantastic! The country club sports a whopping 54 holes on three unique courses. But besides this, the community is beautifully located close to great shopping, and also near Houston’s International Airport. For today’s active senior, it doesn’t get much better than this.

Of course, there are many more such facilities throughout the state that can cater to golf enthusiasts. As you search, keep in mind that homes or apartments located directly on a golf courses will almost always be more expensive than those located a few blocks away. And many of those off-site homes might be a better fit for many seniors, since their back yards might be quite bit larger. The 16th fairway, after all, is pretty to look at, but does not make for a fully functional backyard barbecue pit.

All in all, those who are retired and golfing can be confident that today’s modern retirement facilities will take care of them. And that’s another great reason to be a senior in the twenty-first century!

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