Page 1

FALL 2011 FALL 2011

Silver Connections


Carol Moskowitz    In 2009, Stay At Home Senior Care was  blessed with the addition of Carol  Moskowitz, our Caregiver of the Season,  and a vital part of our Stay At Home  family.   

Carol and her husband, Sandy, moved to  Wake Forest in 2007. She is the mother of  five, and the grandmother of 13! Carol has  owned and operated restaurants in New  York and New Jersey, and is a wonderful  cook. She loves trying new recipes, and  her clients enjoy being the lucky recipients  of her efforts. “I get such satisfaction in  being a help to others. I have spent two  years with most of my clients, and I feel  they are part of my extended family.”   

In addition to caregiving, Carol performs  as Stay At Home’s culinary diva, and has  her own very popular “Crockpot Cooking  with Carol” series. Carol does a fantastic  job, taking great care in selecting recipes  that are delicious, nutritious, and easy to  prepare. The residents at The Crossings at  Heritage and The Gardens at Wakefield  Plantation are always excited to try out her  latest creation.   

Carol loves reading, exercising, and taking  vacations with Sandy. And of course,  “Most of all, I love to cook!” We’re thrilled  she chose to be a part of our team – thank  you, Carol!   

2014-610 S. Main Street, Wake Forest, NC 27587


Welcome to the Fall 2011 Issue of Silver Connections Our fall issue features Carol Moskowitz  as our Caregiver of the Season. Since  May, she has been sharing her cooking  expertise with residents of our Shared  Care communities. Please be sure to  read her front‐page story.     I could not be more excited to share the  news that Stay at Home recently  received a Best of the Best First Place  Award in the Home Health Service  category from the Wake Weekly and its  family of newspapers! Thousands of  nominations were submitted for  readers’ favorite area businesses in more  than 100 categories. We are grateful for  each of your votes!        We have been very busy with  community events, and are looking  forward to the upcoming holiday  celebrations, such as our Holiday Open  House Dec. 19‐21. Please stop by our  office for hot toddy and cheer!    On September 15th, Stay at Home  provided blood pressure checks for  attendees at the Wake Forest Senior  Center Health Fair. I am honored to be a  member of the Center’s Advisory Board,  and appreciate all that the Resources for  Seniors staff does to better the lives of  our community’s older adults.      For Family Day at the Gardens of  Wakefield on September 24th, we had  the opportunity to participate as one of  their preferred providers. It was a fun‐ filled day with children’s games,  nostalgic music, great food, yard/bake  sales, and information booths.   

We began our “Vial of Life” presentations on  September 29th at The Crossings at Heritage.  Along with the Wake Forest Fire  Department, we assisted more than 25  seniors in completing their personalized  emergency information packages. Please see  page 4 for more details.     Also, be sure to check out our Calendar of  Events on Page 4. If any of these events  sound interesting, we would love to have  you participate! We are exhibiting at the  Wake Forest Chamber’s Business Expo again  this year. Please come out to visit us on  Monday, October 24th from 3‐7 pm at The  Factory!     Finally, as an added benefit to our clients, we  have made the bill paying process easier with  the option of automatic electronic funds  transfers (EFT) from a checking account. If  you are interested in participating in this  program, we will send you a simple  authorization form to start the process.      As always, we remain committed to  exceptional client service and compassionate  care. Please do not hesitate to contact us  about a care issue for yourself or a family  member.    And remember, we treat every contact as a  friend, every client as family, and complete  every task with honor.    Best wishes,  Deborah Bordeaux  President,  Certified Senior Advisor     


 President’s Welcome              1    Caregiver of the Season              1    Health & Lifestyles: The Importance of a Good Night’s Sleep      2    Spotlight On Caregivers: Five Reasons It’s Not Time for a Nursing Home          2‐3    Finance/Consumer Resources: Avoiding Elder Financial Abuse    3    The Best of the Best Award, Caregiver Recognition, Calendar of Events,                4         Vial of Life 


The Importance of a Good Night’s Sleep Many seniors deal with a number of health problems related to aging—one in particular is not getting enough healthy sleep. Older adults who don’t sleep well are more likely to suffer from depression, attention and memory problems, and excessive daytime sleepiness. They’re also likely to suffer more nighttime falls, have increased sensitivity to pain, and use more prescription or over-thecounter sleep aids. Some changes in your sleep are natural as you age. Your body produces lower levels of growth hormone, so you’ll likely experience a decrease in deep sleep, and less melatonin often means more rapid sleep cycles and more awakenings between cycles. As your circadian rhythm changes, you may also find yourself wanting to go to sleep earlier in the evening and waking up earlier in the morning. If you don't adjust your bedtimes to these changes, you may find that you have difficulty falling and staying asleep. What’s Keeping You Awake at Night? Many seniors have problems sleeping because of health conditions. Some common issues that can prevent you from getting healthy sleep include: • Side effects of prescription medications • Chronic pain, often from health conditions like arthritis • Depression or other psychological stress • Alcohol or Caffeine consumption • Lack of exercise • Sleep disorders such as restless leg syndrome and Sleep Apnea (Snoring) • Frequent urination during the night Tips to Help You Fall Asleep Here are some suggestions to get a full night of restful, healthy sleep: • Get treatment for any medical problems. If you're experiencing depression, painful arthritis, or bladder problems that force you to go to the bathroom frequently, seek medical attention to address these conditions. • Go to bed earlier. Adjust your bedtime to match when you feel like going to bed, even if that’s earlier than it used to be.

• Develop bedtime rituals. A soothing ritual, like taking a bath or playing music will help you wind down. Relaxation and stress management techniques, such as deep breathing and progressive muscle relaxation, can be of great benefit. • Limit your use of sleeping aids. Many sleep aids have side effects and are not meant for long-term use. In fact, sleeping pills can often make insomnia worse in the long run. • Make lifestyle changes. Adjustments may include eliminating caffeine and not eating a huge meal or a big snack before bedtime. It's also important for you to exercise each day—make it early in the day rather than in the late afternoon or evening, not before bedtime. • Expose yourself to sunlight during the day. Bright sunlight helps regulate melatonin and your sleep-wake cycles. Try to get at least two hours of sunlight a day. Keep curtains and shades open during the day, or move your favorite chair to a sunny spot. • Avoid light at night. Artificial lights at night can suppress your body’s production of melatonin. Use lowwattage bulbs where safe to do so, and turn off the TV and computer at least one hour before bed. • Make sure your bedroom is quiet, dark, and cool, and your bed is comfortable. Noise, light, and heat can interfere with sleep. • Use your bedroom only for sleep or intimacy. By not working, watching TV, or using your computer in bed, you’ll come to associate the bedroom with sleep alone, so when you get into bed your brain and body get a strong signal that it’s time to nod off. Don't accept fatigue and poor sleep as part of getting older. For more sleep related tips, check out the National Institute of Health resources such as the following site: sleepdisorders.html. By Caren Parnes for The Senior’s Choice

Five Reasons It’s Not Time for a Nursing Home To Move or Not to Move… To be clear, this article is not addressing a short-term stay in a nursing home for rehabilitation, but of becoming a permanent nursing home resident. The latter is a decision that changes many things irrevocably, so if you’re grappling with this possibility right now, the following five considerations may help your decision-making. Reason #1 Your aging parent can walk well. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the risk of your mom or dad falling in a nursing home is twice that of falling in the community. Are you surprised by that? Let’s be honest—this is not exactly a selling point for nursing homes. Think you can guess how the fall risk is reduced inside these facilities? If you’ve ever been to a nursing home and seen residents in wheelchairs rather than on their feet, then you know the answer. So what happens when your 89-year-old mother enters a nursing home able to walk, but is encouraged to roll? Over time her leg strength diminishes, and along with it her mobility and sense of autonomy. Reason #2 Good health is on your aging parent’s side. Nursing homes were created for people who require some sort of treatment, management, observation and/or evaluation by skilled staff. Skilled staff (as defined by Medicare) include nurses, physical therapists, occupational therapists, audiologists, and speech pathologists. Examples of care that only a skilled staff member can provide would include wound care, physical therapy and/or intravenous injections. Needs that fall outside of those described above (think bathing and grocery shopping) would be considered unskilled. If your aging parent has unskilled needs Continued on Page 3


Avoiding Elder Financial Abuse Actor Mickey Rooney recently testified in Washington that he has been a victim of elder abuse, putting him among some 2.1 million aging Americans who each year suffer some form of financial, physical, psychological or other abuse, according to the American Psychological Association. Mickey Rooney’s experience highlights a rising problem in a graying nation—and it shows that elder abuse is not limited by location, status or wealth. The elderly should take these precautionary steps: • Subscribe to national and state DO NOT CALL lists. • Keep social security cards in a safe place. • Avoid giving personal information over the phone. • Delete unsolicited emails that request personal information or money. • Do not open doors to strangers. • Remove mail promptly from the mailbox. • Review bills and bank statements promptly for accuracy. • Shred all confidential and financial information prior to discarding. • Make a copy of all items in their wallets and keep it in a safe place. Families of the elderly should take these precautionary steps: • Beware of a new trusted friend. Do Mom and Dad have a neighbor, caregiver, sibling, or other outsider who is suddenly their best friend, running errands, going to the bank, or generally being around when they were not in your parents' past at all? This can be a warning sign that someone is taking advantage. • Watch for unusual account activity. Review your parents' bank and investment statements for excess activity at the ATM, excessive trading in the brokerage account, many cash withdrawals, or other suspicious activity. To prevent elder financial abuse, also watch out for someone becoming a joint account holder for your parents’ “convenience.” • Look through mail and email. Correspondence with people you don't know or solicitations from questionable charities should be investigated. The

elderly often are concerned about taking care of people who are less fortunate and are vulnerable to requests from charities that are not legitimate. • Keep aware of the will. Victims of elderly abuse often want to change their will to take care of someone who has been kind to them in their later years. • Visit. One of the best prevention techniques is to visit with your parents often. This advice holds for avoiding financial, physical, and verbal abuse. Abuse can come from a caregiver, nursing home personnel, and even a sibling. Regular and unscheduled visits can be a powerful tool for fighting abuse. • Be careful with a POA. The elderly should give power of attorney only to someone they trust without question. There are alternatives. One is a springing Continued from Page 2

alone, moving him or her into a nursing home is likely to be overkill. Reason #3 Your parent is safest at home and prefers to live there. One of the toughest things for an adult daughter or son to do is to recognize what’s working “well enough” and then leave it alone. So your aging parent lives happily at home but your top concern is safety? Join the club! Then quit the talk about a nursing home. Now is the time to prevent a fall by: • Making sure all rooms in your parent’s house are well lit and free of clutter, etc. • Broaching the topic of some adaptive equipment for the bathroom and maybe even a personal emergency response system. Reason #4 You can hire enough help at home to meet your aging parent’s needs. Now we’ve arrived at the tricky place. If you can’t (or your parent can’t) afford to hire help at home, then ask yourself this: Can one of you afford the cost of a nursing home? That’s right, Medicare does not pay for nursing homes after the first 20 days, and even then your aging parent must have

power of attorney, which only applies upon a certain event. Another is a revocable trust to hold assets with a corporate entity as a trustee. Corporate trustees often have detailed knowledge about issues affecting the elderly and are bonded. • Get advice you can trust. CPA financial planners have extensive experience helping the elderly plan and protect their estates, and are available nationwide to offer advice on avoiding financial abuse. To talk with a CPA personal financial specialist about elder planning in your market, visit By Ted Sarenski a skilled need. So if you were thinking that a nursing home would be the most cost-effective long term care option for your parent, think again. Nursing homes cost $10,000–$13,000 per month depending upon where your aging parent lives. Yes, you read that right— $10,000–$13,000 per MONTH if he/she doesn’t have Medicaid. Even at a cost of $20 per hour, home care would still cost less. Reason #5 Your aging parent is connected to a physician whom they trust. It’s hard to overstate the value of your aging parent being known to a physician in the community who will take his/her calls and, even more importantly, take interest in helping your parent to manage his/her health over time. It’s an important relationship, and a move to a nursing home could sever it. Finally, your parent wants to live at home as long as possible. Make sure that if you make the decision for a nursing home, it was the choice of last resort. m/2011/01/five-reasons-its-not-time-fora-nursing-home/


The Wake Weekly and   its family of newspapers   recently held a contest  for the area’s “Best of the  Best” businesses. The  contest was a six‐week  long effort of readers  weighing‐in with  thousands of   nominations for their  favorite area business in  more than 100 categories.    

At a wonderful dinner held on   September 22nd at The Sutherland,   Stay at Home Senior Care was   recognized with a First Place   Award in the Home Health   Service category. A big thank you   to everyone who voted for us –   what an incredible honor!

Congratulations to our caregivers and staff who have completed the  Alzheimer’s Training Program, “Accepting The Challenge”!  Doretta Adams    Beverly Jepson   

Bridget Day    Jayne Piet    Wendy Veasey 

Kim Dingus  Shari Regan 

Also join us in recognizing our Caregivers of the Month!!!  August  ‐   September  ‐  October  ‐ 

  In the case of an emergency,  immediate access to personal  information is crucial—examples  include family contacts, hospital  preference, allergies and medica‐ tions. As a service to our clients  and Shared Care community  residents, Stay at Home has  developed a pre‐printed form for  important facts that is contained in  a magnetic refrigerator pocket. 

Bridget Day  Patricia Alston  June Zollo   

In partnership with the Wake  Forest Fire Department, we  introduced the Vial of Life package  to residents at The Crossings at  Heritage. During the September  29th presentation, seniors were able  to fill in their personal information  and learn more about emergency  situations from Lieutenant Michael  Swiman.     We are looking forward to sharing  this resource with residents at The  Gardens at Wakefield Plantation  on October 19th. Please contact our  office if you would be interested in  having us present to your Church  group or organization.     

Calendar of Events:   

Vial of Life Presentation ‐ The Gardens at Wakefield Plantation     Wednesday, October 19 at 3:00 pm  Crockpot Cooking with Carol ‐ The Crossings at Heritage  Thursday, October 20 at 2:30 pm  Wake Forest Chamber Business Expo ‐ The Factory in Wake Forest  Monday, October 24 from 3:00–7:00 pm   

Blood Pressure Checks ‐ The Crossings at Heritage  First & Third Fridays from 1:00‐2:00 pm  Blood Pressure Checks ‐ The Gardens at Wakefield Plantation  Every Wednesday from 9:00‐10:00 am  Blood Pressure Checks ‐ The Lodge at Wake Forest  Every Wednesday from 10:30‐11:30 am  Caregiver/Staff Monthly Meetings ‐ The Gardens at Wakefield Plantation  First Wednesday of Every Month from 2:30‐3:30pm 

Stay at Home has  Gone Social!

Visit, then click on the Facebook icon and “Like us” to receive our latest news & publications!






Vestibular Rehabilitation Retraining the Inner Ear For patients over 75 years of age,  dizziness is the number one reason  for visiting a physician.  Dizziness is  considered a key risk factor for falls  in the elderly population because it  can cause general unsteadiness and  problems walking.  Falls can lead to  serious injury, and an estimated 10%  of all falls result in hospitalization.   Many adults and children alike are  referred to physical therapy to treat  balance problems and dizziness‐ related disorders.    For many years, physical therapists  have been treating a wide variety of  conditions, from common sprains  and strains, to post‐surgical rehab, to  strokes and brain injuries.  Physical  therapists can also treat conditions  related to balance and dizziness.   Treatment techniques rely on the  ability of the brain to adapt, accom‐ modate, and retrain itself so that  symptoms of dizziness are no longer  felt.  Depending on the patientʹs  condition, a physical therapist will  likely attempt to engage one or more  of the three components of balance:  visual system, vestibular system, and  peripheral nervous system.  Visual  inputs to the brain orient us to where  we are in space, while the vestibular  system (organs in our inner ear)  orient our heads to gravity, head  motion, and head position.  The  peripheral nervous system transmits  sensations from our feet and ankles  to our brains so that we recognize  what surface we are standing on.   Diagnostic tests during a physical  therapy evaluation can determine  which component of a patientʹs 

balance system is working cor‐ rectly and which components are  not.   A trained physical therapist  can then determine the best  treatment plan for each individual  patient based on these diagnostic  tests.  Patients experiencing  balance problems, dizziness,  vertigo, and general unsteadiness 

could potentially benefit greatly  from physical therapy, and in many  cases the results of treatment can be  immediate.    If you are interested in an evalua‐ tion, vestibular rehabilitation is  offered at Orthopedic Physical  Therapy Associates in Wake Forest  by physical therapist Grant Nelson.   Call 919.556.4678 to make an   appointment with Grant. 








Stay at Home Senior Care - Fall 2011 Newsletter  

Our Fall issue includes our caregiver feature, upcoming events and helpful information for seniors and/or their adult children.