AT MOUNTAIN VISTA
Living Free From Regrets Todayâ€™s Senior Living Defying Expectations Memory Care Provides Peace of Mind for Families and Residents
Live Free From Regret, Do it Now! Can you even believe summer is already coming to an end? My how time flies. It seems we were just making plans while waiting for the warmer months to come, and now we’re already experiencing a chill in the evenings and seeing the first leaves start to fall. When seasons change, it’s easy to feel like we should have accomplished more than we have. Too often, we put things off, either feeling we are too busy or we have plenty of time ahead of us. Sometimes we overlook bodily signals and ignore symptoms, thinking we’ll have time to deal with it later. However, postponing things isn’t always in your best interest. Done too frequently you may feel you missed the opportunity of a lifetime, or even accelerated a negative outcome that could have been avoided. Moving forward, we want to banish regret from our lives.
FALL :: 2016
That’s why our new motto is “Do it now!” This goes for all aspects of life. Stop procrastinating on work assignments or projects and celebrate when they are competed. Present a new idea to your coworkers or friends, you may find that your idea was just the solution everyone was looking for! Stop just talking about a fantasy trip and make the reservations, reconnect with family and friends or join that book club you have been meaning to. More importantly, if a family member seems a little off, make an appointment with their doctor. I tell you from my own experience it’s better to be proactive than to let important symptoms slip by because they seem small at the time. My family was in denial regarding my Mother’s condition and unfortunately overlooked small changes in her behavior, and as a result her early stage dementia went undiagnosed for quite
some time. My wish is that you not make the same mistake with your parents and take the necessary steps. Be sure while living in the “Now” to enjoy life’s simple pleasures. Find occasions of joy in each and every day, be it walking the dog, tending your roses, or sharing a chat with your neighbors. Do it now!
~Mary Sawyer-Winters, Community Administrator
Mary Sawyer-Winters, Mountain Vista Community Administrator
Today’s Senior Living Defies Expectations The idea of moving into a senior living community can often be daunting. But it doesn’t have to be. In recent years, as the baby boomer generation has begun reaching retirement age, senior living communities have transformed from the once heavily stigmatized “nursing home” model to become places where active, independent seniors thrive, enjoying access to abundant amenities, activities, and social outlets.
To meet the growing demand for amenity-rich senior housing options, Mountain Vista and several other ABHM communities have introduced a number of renovations and new community features that include wellness centers, beauty parlors, bistros, fitness programs, communal gardens, spiritual services, landscaped grounds for walking, theaters, expanded dining options, and more. A good example of this “new senior living community” is Tudor Oaks, a sister community to Mountain Vista, located in Muskego WI. The Community recently unveiled the new Glenn Goethel Sports Complex, which includes Bocce ball, putting greens, and an outdoor seating area with a pergola, all of which was entirely donor funded. In addition to adding community amenities, many ABHM communities have also completed recent apartment renovations, featuring open floor plans, stainless steel appliances, cable TV, and Wi-Fi. To further serve resident needs, within the last 18
PAGE :: 3
months five ABHM communities, Mountain Vista included, have opened new memory care centers which offer private memory care suites and expanded support services.
Crystal Ferley, 93, can’t say enough positive things about her independent living apartment at another Mountain Vista sister-community, Thorne Crest, located in Albert Lea, MN. “It’s beautiful and well maintained,” she says. “I lived in my house for 50 years and loved it, but it was not hard at all to make the transition because my new apartment was as nice as my house
ever was. I love my apartment.” Even more important than the amenities are the social opportunities that life in a senior living community makes available. Social connections are crucial for our emotional and psychological well-being throughout our lives, but are particularly important as we age. Loneliness and isolation can even have adverse consequences on our physical health, accelerating cognitive decline and increasing the risk of vascular, inflammatory, or heart disease.
After losing her husband last year and spending a stint in Thorne Crest rehab, Crystal realized a permanent move to the Community was in her best interest. She says that the social, welcoming atmosphere of the community was just what she needed. “There comes a time when you know you need the help, and I knew I did.” Crystal continues, “I had some doubts about the idea of moving to a senior community, but it feels like one big family here. It wasn’t hard at all to get acquainted with people. You can be as involved in the community as you want to be and still feel like you always have someone who cares. You never need to be lonesome.” Many seniors feel apprehensive about making the transition to a senior living community, but Crystal has some wise advice: “It’s all about your attitude. If you have a positive attitude, you’ll have a positive experience.” The senior living community at Thorne Crest has been transformative for Crystal’s own life. “I can’t tell you how good it is for me to be here,” she says. “I’m really happy.
Residents an Finding Peace of
Memory Seniors are living longer and more independently than ever before. However, with longer life comes an increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s or dementia. Sufferers of these diseases face a progressive decline in cognitive and physical capabilities, resulting in the gradual loss of independence and eventual need for structured daily care. To meet the growing need, senior living communities all over the country have been adding additional facilities and services dedicated to memory care, making a clear difference in quality of life for seniors—and their family members. When Mary Brockington – a resident at ABHM’s Denver location, The Community at Franklin Park – was first diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, she still lived at home with her husband Fred. Initially her family took care of her at home, but eventually it became clear that she needed professional care. According to her daughter, Caralynne, Mary had reached this point before moving to Franklin Park. “She would start packing everything and would start to try to go home—but she was home,” Caralynne describes. “She didn’t want anyone’s help, but we re-
FALL :: 2016
alized that it might start getting dangerous and we wanted to keep her safe.” A relative with memory loss can be a constant source of stress for family members, caregivers, and loved ones. Each day is fraught with communication challenges, difficulties performing routine tasks, and the risks associated with confusion and forgetfulness—such as the tendency to wander away and become lost. Before settling into Franklin Park, Mary first moved into another facility. However, it soon became clear that she required more advanced services than they could provide. Her family moved Mary to Franklin Park, where she has her own private room and nursing staff are available 24/7. The move to Franklin Park has been a
nd Families f Mind Through
y Care wonderful experience for both Mary and her family members. “I try to visit every day,” Caralynne says, “but I call to check in on the days that I can’t go myself. The staff are diligent about keeping us posted on how she’s doing that day and her o v e r a l l progress. They have all been very personable and seem dedicated to their work.” Because social interaction plays an important part in managing the symptoms of Alzheimer’s, Franklin Park and the other ABHM communities provide extensive activities and programs designed to connect and engage with memory care residents. By keeping loved ones involved with favorite hobbies and activities, caregivers and family members can help them improve mood and memory—and possibly even slow the process of cognitive decline. Mary, a lifelong social butterfly, is certainly
PAGE :: 7
seeing the benefits of staying active at Franklin Park. “During our visits we sit and talk, we sing songs, and we pray,” says Caralynne. “We choose our activities based on her mood, but we have been able to continue many of the activities she used to love. She’s been adjusting well to the community. She seems content.” The support Franklin Park and all ABHM communities provide isn’t limited to residents. Caralynne and her family have been attending a monthly support group at Franklin Park throughout Mary’s time there. “Ever since she was first diagnosed, we have been going to seminars to learn more about the illness,” says Caralynne. “The speakers at Franklin Park have been really helpful in educating us about what has been going on with our mom. It makes our journey a little easier to understand what she’s experiencing.” For more information about Mountain Vista’s assisted living or memory care program, call Judy Bernstein at 303-421-4161.
A Dementia Diagnosis is Not Without Options
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, someone in America develops symptoms of Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia every 66 seconds. Dementia is a broad category of brain diseases that cause longterm loss of cognitive ability severe enough to interfere with a person's daily functioning. As a progressive disease, dementia causes a person’s ability to care for themselves to slowly deteriorate. Spouses and family members can provide a great deal of support, but the task of caring for someone with dementia often becomes a never-ending job that is both physically and emotionally taxing. Eventually the disease progresses to the point where a person’s needs ex-
FALL :: 2016
ceed the capabilities of family caregivers and they will need to seek full-time professional care.
There are several care options families can explore. One option is to work with a Home Health Agency and hire a nurse to visit your loved one’s home and provide daily care. A second option is to move a loved one to a senior living community that offers an appropriate memory care program. At Mountain Vista we have recently expanded our services to include a brand new assisted living memory care building on our campus. Our assisted living memory care offers residents private apartment-like rooms with all meals included and staff available 24/7 to provide care and se-
curity, ensuring residents are comfortable and safe.
If your loved one’s condition is more advanced, a third option is skilled memory care. At this level of care residents reside in a secure area and the nursing staff are available 24/7 to ensure all their health care and daily needs are met. At Mountain Vista’s skilled memory care center private or semi-private rooms are available in a secured setting. If you know someone living with or caring for someone with dementia and is is looking for care options, please feel free to contact Mountain Vista Senior Living Community at 303-421-4161.
~Heather Wheat Comm. Relations Coordinator
Diet & Dementia: Eating Well to Live Well In the past those with dementia were often treated with restrictive or “therapeutic” diets, but recent research suggests that these approaches may actually exacerbate poor food intake and nutrition. Adopting a more flexible and personalized nutritional plan focused on individual preferences can increase intake and minimize nutritional decline, an essential element of treating the symptoms of dementia.
A dementia diagnosis presents many challenges to a person’s wellbeing, one of which is nutritional wellness. The progression of the disease makes it increasingly difficult to maintain a stable healthy diet. As a registered dietitian at a long-term care and acute rehab community, I understand how valuable the nutritional well-being is to those with dementia—and how important nutrition is when implementing care plans at home or in residential communities. Family members often wonder why their loved one’s appetite has declined, why they’re losing weight, or why they no longer crave their favorite family recipe. In the early stages of dementia, those afflicted may find it more challenging to shop for food and prepare meals. As the disease progresses, individuals may become unable to recognize physi-
At Mountain Vista our treatment plans include nutritional wellness aimed at improving quality of life for older adults. These plans include plenty of nutrient-dense options tailored to individual food preferences, to achieve maximum nutritional intake and overall health.
cal signals of hunger and thirst, experience a declining sense of smell, develop taste aversions to foods they once loved, and display lack of interest at mealtimes. In advanced stages a person may decline food all together, resulting in weight loss, malnutrition, increased risk of infection and disease and mortality.
~Leah Black, RD Mtn. Vista Registered Dietition
Discover OurNEW Memory Care Center ■ 22 New Private Memory Care Suites ■ Specialized Memory Programs ■ New Courtyards ■ Comfortable, Open Setting for Residents & Family Senior Living Community
Limited Time New Resident Offers...
New Resident FIRST MONTH’s Rent PAGE :: 7
Plus receive up to
Towards Moving Expenses!
– Offer good thru Nov. 30, 2016 –
4800 Tabor Street Wheat Ridge, CO 80033 www.MountainVista.net
Mountain Vista Senior Living Community is owned and operated by American Baptist Homes of the Midwest, a not-for-profit provider of senior health care since 1930.
Mountain Vista is a faith-based, not-for-profit senior living community. Our mission is to create healthy Christian communities that empower older adults. We provide choices for housing, services, and technology that enrich body, mind and spirit.
Discover Assisted Living at Mountain Vista
AT MOUNTAIN VISTA FALL 2016 FALL 2016
Senior Living Community
AT MOUNTAIN VISTA
Living Free From Regrets Today’s Senior Living Defying Expectations Memory Care Provides Peace of Mind for Families and Residents
■ Beautiful Apartments Now Available ■ Individual Care Plans ■ Additional Health Care Services On One Campus
Limited Time New Resident Offers...
New Resident FIRST MONTH’s Rent
Plus receive up to
Towards Moving Expenses!
– Offers good thru Nov. 30, 2016 –