It’s the month of May, which means we’ll soon celebrate Mother’s Day. If your mother is a senior, consider these thoughtful gifts as a way to communicate your love. The best gift is your time. If you live nearby, consider scheduling a meal to spend with your mother. If she lives in a senior living community, review their Activity Calendar to see if there’s a special event or brunch planned that you can attend with her. If your mother lives far away, set up a Skype or FaceTime call so that you can see each other face-to-face and make your time together more special than a regular phone call. Ask a family member, friend or caregiver to assist her with technology on the day of your scheduled call so that you can connect easily. Flowers are often the primary way we express our love on Mother’s Day. Instead of a bouquet, consider purchasing a potted plant that your mother can enjoy year-round as a reminder of your love for her. You could even purchase a plant that’s the same type and color as the flowers she had on her wedding day. If your mother needs assistance with maintaining her garden, consider hiring a gardener who can pull weeds and mow the lawn as her gift this year. Create a lasting memento. Do you have children? If your mother’s grandchildren cannot accompany you on your visit, consider creating a video of them wishing her a happy Mother’s Day. This [...]
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Many of us have owned a furry friend who has changed our lives. Whether it’s a dog or a cat, we are often drawn to pets because they provide a unique sense of comfort and companionship. As we age, seniors can continue to benefit from owning a pet.Pets are known to reduce stress, increase the secretion of serotonin, the “happy” hormone, and decrease symptoms of depression, which can surface when seniors are suffering from feelings of loneliness. Pets need exercise just like seniors do, so walking a dog can provide the physical activity that both an aging senior and their pet need. Walking a pet also encourages seniors to get outside and enjoy the beauty that surrounds them while caring for their animal.Often times, seniors find a renewed sense of purpose when they become a pet owner. Pets require a routine and may provide a welcomed sense of structure in a senior’s day. And, a new dog, for example, can be a great way for seniors to connect socially with other dog owners. Investing in a pet means proactively engaging with another living being, which can prove to be immensely satisfying for a senior whose social circle may be limited.Sometimes, it becomes difficult for a senior to properly care for their pet. It might become increasingly challenging to pick up after a pet or bend down to feed them. Those affected with memory impairment might forget to feed their animal or administer medication prescribed by the vet. Often times, [...]
Our sleep patterns are affected by time changes and with daylight savings approaching, it’s generally believed that “losing” an hour in the spring is harder to adjust to than “gaining” an hour in the fall. Seniors often have a particularly difficult time getting a good night’s sleep, which is only complicated by daylight savings. This can be attributed to a host of factors. Our bodies produce less melatonin as we age, seniors often develop disruptive napping patterns that alter their sleep cycle, and many report troubles falling asleep.Lack of sleep can lead to a number of problems for seniors, including a depressed mood, increased risk of falls, trouble paying attention and decreased memory functioning. Although our sleep patterns change as we get older, difficulty sleeping is not a normal part of the aging process.It is recommended that older adults sleep for an average of 7-9 hours a night. Here are a few tips to assist you in achieving this:Spend time outdoors; exposure to sunlight for at least two hours a day will help to regulate your melatonin and sleep-wake cycles. Open your blinds and sit by the window as you read a book.Limit napping during the day and exercise regularly. If you are too sedentary, you may never feel sleepy, or feel sleepy all of the time.Limit the amount of alcohol and caffeine you are consuming, especially before bedtime.Listen to your body and establish a regular sleep routine. Seniors tend to feel more tired earlier in the evening, and [...]
At Oakmont of Santa Clarita, senior residents can experience restaurant-style fine dining at every meal thanks to the community’s head chef, Jonathan Schwartz.With a winter menu currently being offered in addition to daily specials, an executive chef from Oakmont Senior Living’s home office works with the chefs at each Oakmont community to create a variety of menu options. “We even grow our own herbs, so we can use a lot of our own herbs and vegetables in our menu,” said Mary Dembkowski of Oakmont of Santa Clarita.The dining room is open all day long, and the dinner menu is offered from 4:30-7 p.m., with a bistro stocked with freshly baked cookies, granola bars, fruit and other snack items after hours. “You can always help yourself to a snack in the bistro if it’s after the kitchen has closed,” Dembkowski said.The culinary team at Oakmont of Santa Clarita is preparing a special Valentine’s Day menu for this week, which will offer a cream of asparagus soup with parmesan breadcrumbs, a choice of two entrees, and a carrot cake roll with cinnamon cream cheese filling for dessert.Entree options include prosciutto wrapped roasted pork tenderloin with dried fig compote served with mushroom and forbidden rice pilaf, or duck confit and seared muscovy duck breast with rosemary garlic potatoes and brandied carrots. At Oakmont of Santa Clarita’s two-year anniversary celebration, the culinary team even whipped up an Italian feast. “We had an Italian wine tasting event with a full Italian feast and some great [...]
Four completed and fully furnished model units are open for viewing at Fair Oaks’ newest retirement community, Oakmont of Fair Oaks. A studio suite, an open one bedroom/companion, a large one- bedroom and a two-bedroom suite can be viewed via appointment or by visiting the Information Center, located at 8484 Madison Avenue. The Information Center is open seven days a week, from 9am to 5pm. Located on 3.65 acres near an abundance of shopping and dining options, Oakmont of Fair Oaks will be an 84,613-square foot community featuring 50 Assisted Living and 34 Memory Care apartment homes. Floor plans include a studio and one and two-bedroom options ranging from 400 to 1,306 square feet. All homes have 10-foot high ceilings and spacious bathrooms. Just minutes from Lake Natomas, Folsom Lake and the American River Parkway, Oakmont of Fair Oaks is a luxurious option for active seniors in search of resort-style amenities and continuing care services. “We are the first new full-service retirement community that has been built in Fair Oaks in over a decade,” said Steve Weinroth, Executive Director of Oakmont of Fair Oaks. “We are excited to offer this premier retirement option to local seniors and offer attractive new employment opportunities to the residents of Fair Oaks.” To meet the diverse demands of vibrant and refined seniors, the community’s amenity package for all residents includes: Gourmet meals served anytime 7am to 7pm in a restaurant-style dining room, with a full menu designed and prepared by a five-star executive chef [...]
Oakmont of Santa Clarita was evacuated during the 6,000-acre Rye Fire in Saugus last month, and residents and staff were forced to spend a total of 12 days away from the senior living community while restoration crews worked to repair extensive smoke damage. On Dec. 5, 2017, Oakmont of Santa Clarita staff and volunteers from the community worked to safely evacuate 94 seniors while spot fires burned around the property and heavy smoke clouded the area. A senior resident holds their dog during the Rye Fire evacuation at Oakmont of Santa Clarita. “Our executive director, Margie, just handled things so calmly and professionally, and I think because the staff was calm and just doing what we needed to do, the residents were calm,” said Mary Demkowski of Oakmont of Santa Clarita. “So we just methodically got everyone out.” Related: Oakmont Of Santa Clarita Gearing Up For Thanksgiving Feast Several city buses and a number of staff members’ vehicles were quickly loaded up with residents, who were then safely transported to the Santa Clarita Valley Senior Center in Newhall. No one was injured during the evacuation, and staff and volunteers managed to work quickly enough to avoid any of the residents becoming ill from smoke inhalation. After serving an impromptu lunch at the Senior Center, some residents were able to go home with family members while the rest took charter buses to an Oakmont Senior Living community in Orange County in the city of Brea. “We couldn’t go back,” Dembkowski explained. [...]
Driving can sometimes be challenging for seniors, even more so if they use their cellphone while driving. A recent survey released by The University of California San Diego School of Medicine reveals that 60% of seniors (65+) talk on their cellphones while driving. Experts say that this type of “distracted driving” increases the risk of crash four-fold, and is equivalent to driving with a 0.08 blood alcohol level. Going “hands free” or using Bluetooth doesn’t necessarily solve the problem either, because the brain is required to multi-task, which takes your mind off of what you’re doing (also called “inattention blindness”). California law strictly prohibits texting and using cell phones while driving. Here are some tips to ensure seniors are driving safely: Turn your cell phone off when you get into the car – this is the simplest and most effective way to ensure that seniors are not using their phone while driving. When turning off the cell phone becomes as routine as putting on your seat belt, a habit is built that greatly increases the driver’s safety. Take a “Defensive Driving” course through AAA or an online traffic school – AAA has created a Defensive Driving course that is designed specifically for seniors. This online course covers the following topics: distractions, drowsiness, aggressive driving and road rage, managing visibility, time and space, alcohol & medications, and comfort and safety tips. Most importantly, pay extra attention to senior’s driving skills – behavioral changes like forgetfulness, loss of coordination, hearing loss, [...]
Windsor, CA. On October 16th, Sheila Garner, senior living executive and 40+ year veteran of the industry, will join Oakmont Senior Living as a member of the Executive Team. Ms. Garner has served as an industry leader and change maker in positions ranging from community Executive Director to Division Vice President. As both a California licensed Nursing Home Administrator and Certified Administrator for Assisted Living (RCFE) in California, Sheila has supported over 140 Senior Living Communities including Continuing Care Retirement Communities, Skilled Nursing Facilities, and Assisted Living and Memory Care Communities, and she has served as an inspiration, coach, and mentor to dozens of senior living executives who continue to make their mark to advance senior living to its greatest potential. Sheila’s passion and commitment to seniors is both respected and admired in the industry. Currently, Ms. Garner serves as the Immediate Past Chair of the California Assisted Living Association (CALA), having served on the Board as well as in Public Policy for 12 years. Ms. Garner consults with and supports entrepreneurs that are working in the senior aging space. She has been invited to speak at various venues including Aging 2.0 and its startup boot camps as well as participating in forums at the Stanford Center on Longevity. Ms. Garner holds a Bachelor’s degree from California State University Hayward and a Post- Graduate Certificate of Business Management from the University of Southern California. Sheila will join Oakmont Senior Living as Vice President of Strategic Programs. Her experience, knowledge, [...]
We’ve been covering tips and tricks that seniors can use while they embark on their own fitness journeys and this next article will focus on tips for avoiding injury while exercising. For a general overview of exercise and seniors, we recommend checking out our previous article, Exercise and Seniors, here. Let’s get started!Now while everyone can and should be careful whenever they exercise, it’s especially important for seniors to practice caution whenever they begin exercising. Older adults can be more prone to injury when they engage in physical activity. As we age, ligaments and tendons don’t have as much elasticity and bones lose their density, which means they can be more fragile and less resistant to breaks.Injuries can be prevented by implementing modifications into your fitness routine, as well as finding professionals who understand how to properly engage in physical activity. Speaking with your doctor before engaging in an exercise regime is always recommended, because your doctor will be able to explain what exercises work best for your body.We have a few tips to keep in mind to help avoid injuries while you’re working out:Warm-up:When you warm-up before any type of exercise it prepares your body for movement. Warming up shouldn’t take long, just enough to get your heart rate up, ideally start with five to ten minutes of easy, moderate movement.Start slow:If you’re newer to exercise or haven’t embarked on a fitness journey in a number of years, it’s a good idea to start at a small pace. [...]
Staying hydrated is always important for seniors' health. However, in the summer when temperatures are high and people are more likely to spend more time in the sun, consuming enough water is essential to avoid dehydration. Seniors can be more susceptible to water and electrolyte imbalances as we age; our body’s ability to conserve water is lowered and the sense of thirst can diminish. This means seniors should be drinking more periodically throughout the day to maintain healthy hydration levels. Since hydration is so important, we’ve compiled a list of helpful ideas to keep in mind for the summer: A pint or more of water is lost every day just by breathing. As people get older, body water content decreases. By the time you feelthirsty, your water levels could already be extremely low. Many medications the elderly take make them more susceptible to dehydration. The body tends to become especially dehydrated while traveling, particularly on airplanes. Whenever flying, an additional 8 oz. of water per hour is suggested. Exposure to summer heat requires additional water. The body uses a great deal of water through skin-cooling perspiration. The first sign of dehydration may be a headachy feeling at the end of the day. Specific conditions, such as reduced swallowing capacity, decreased mobility, comprehension and communication disorders can contribute to dehydration. There are a number of ways to integrate more water into your lifestyle: Pour water into an easy-to-use water bottle, such as a canteen or plastic tumbler cup. This [...]