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Senior Assisted Living Blog

Alzheimer and Dementia Victim Identity Theft On The Rise

Joseph Coupal - Friday, April 30, 2010

Alzheimer and Dementia Victim Identity Theft On The Rise

The unscrupulous continue to victimize the elderly at record levels, especially those in the early stages of Alzheimer and other dementia illnesses.  Alzheimer’s and indeed senior citizens as a whole are especially vulnerable to identity theft because they are more trusting, many of them are lonely,  and most are less aware of the ever increasing variety of scams.

The telephone is a powerful tool for scammers that prey on senior citizens. While many senior citizens don't use email or browse the internet, they all use the telephone. Identity thieves call elderly people and pretend to represent churches, charities, scholarships, and countless other activities.   Scammers also use snail mail to phish for information from the elderly. Like the phone calls, the mail appears to come from trusted sources, such as the victim's bank, charitable organizations or well known companies.

Protect your loved ones by discussing the subject of identity theft with them and by limiting exposure of their personal information.  Review their mail and identify to your loved one the specific things that they should never discard without being thoroughly destroyed (or better yet, shredded).  Convince your loved ones to never respond to any type of solicitation without first consulting a trusted family member.  And it goes without saying, sadly, the degree of financial discretion afforded victims of Alzheimer’s or any other form of dementia must be constantly reassessed based on the progression of the disease.  

National Volunteer Week Extended to Spring Arbor Volunteer Month

Joseph Coupal - Wednesday, April 28, 2010

National Volunteer Week Extended to “Spring Arbor Volunteer Month”

Although last Saturday marked the end of “National Volunteer Appreciation Week (April 18-24), we’re holding on for another week. Sure, the formal appreciation events are now behind us, however, we can’t thank enough the hundreds of volunteers that continue to serve each and every individual Spring Arbor Living and The Oaks communities.  From our volunteer Bible study leaders, bingo hosts, musicians, arts and craft coordinators….and oh so many more, your selfless gifts of time, treasure, and talent brighten not only the spirits of our residents, but their families, our staff, and the communities in which we live.  

For the remainder of “Volunteer Appreciation Month”, we encourage all residents, staff, and family to continue to continue to thank and praise our dedicated family of volunteers. We warmly invite any and all of you to consider volunteering your time and talent at any of our locations.  It is said that nothing is more genuine than the smile or the elderly.  And it is simply impossible to describe the reward in delivering a smile to the treasure that is our senior citizens.  One thing is certain, you’ll wish you had started earlier. 

Spring Arbor’s New Winchester Virginia’s Community Continues On Schedule for opening in September

Joseph Coupal - Monday, April 26, 2010

Spring Arbor’s New Winchester Virginia’s Community Continues On Schedule for opening in September

The excitement and anticipation for the new Assisted Living Community in Winchester continues to grow.  In keeping with our tradition of providing you all with direct contact to senior management, Winchester’s Executive Director, Mr. Dave Compton, warmly welcomes the opportunity to personally share the intimate details of Winchester’s development.  Please feel free to contact Dave at (540) 242-7199 or by email at

Spring Arbor Living Sponsoring Wine Fest

Joseph Coupal - Thursday, April 22, 2010

We are sponsoring the Bloomin Wine Fest “Uncork the Bloom,” which is:

Wine, Food, Music, Artisans on the Loudoun Street Mall in Old Town Winchester, Virginia

On Friday April 23, 2010 – 3:00pm to 10:00pm and Saturday, April 24, 2010 – 11:00am to 6:00pm.

This is the launch for the 83rd Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival – “Do You Believe In Magic,” which is held April 23 – May 2, 2010.

The Winchester residents open their doors to tens of thousands of new guests and old friends who gather in this All-American Community for the traditional celebration of a promising apple crop.  

The Queens Coronation, to Firefighters parade, tremendous fireworks, grand feature parade, carnival, circus, dinners, dances etc….

Can Assisted Living Help Your Loved one

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Our Most Frequently Asked Question is “Can you help my loved one?”

Your worry about caring for a senior loved one is our worry and our passion.  Every single day, we address the desperate calls from those who ask essentially the same question:  “My Mom is a frail senior and needs extensive assistance on a daily basis and I need to be assured you can handle it”.  Sadly, too high of a percentage of these calls are from those whose loved one is not receiving adequate care at their current accommodations.    

Our extensive experience in assisted living empowers us to answer the question with a simple and consistent “Yes we can”.   Spring Arbor Living’s service excellence is based on a business model that is centered upon a private company with a 20 year history operating as a regional provider which each individual locations being a part of the surrounding community.  This practice has kept our debt low, maximizes consistent reinvestment in facilities and staff, and empowers senior managerial oversight of each individual facility to be direct, early, and often.  Assisted living communities managed by impersonal conglomerates simply can’t do this.

This is yet another (even fundamental) element of the Spring Arbor Experience.  It is what separates us and our parent company (HHHunt, Inc.) from the huge conglomerate corporations that dominate the assisted living industry.

Music Therapy is A Key to Unlocking Memories

Joseph Coupal - Friday, April 16, 2010

Music Therapy: A Key to Unlocking Memories

The Wall Street Journal ran an article, “A Key for Unlocking Memories” that detailed music therapy for Alzheimer’s and dementia patients through the use of MP3 players.   This story talks about the various therapy’s available and profiles the Institute for Music and Neurologic Function.  The Institute has a “Top 10s For Loved Ones With Memory Impairments”.  The list includes top 10s from the 40s, 50, 60s, R&B, Spanish, Country and Spiritual hits.  

Prior to your next visit to a loved one under our care at any  Spring Arbor Alzheimer’s Care Center , why not load your MP3 with some music you know they once held dear.  Take time to share a brief journey down memory lane….and let them do the driving.  

The Spring Arbor Experience Includes Senior Social Networking

Joseph Coupal - Thursday, April 15, 2010

Don’t think for a minute that social networking is just for kids. The truth is that the senior citizen age group is one of the fastest growing demographics on social networking services.  Popular sites like Facebook and Myspace have gone to great lengths to make their sites more accessible to senior citizens, as well as giving them more features specifically designed to an older demographic. Our genuine respect for the utility of senior social networking services (like this blog) represents the difference that is The Spring Arbor Experience.

Even if your senior loved one would never consider surfing senior social networks, you should.  Who hasn’t at one time or another flat out run out of things to discuss with the elderly? Take fifteen minutes to peruse senior social sites before your next visit to see Mom, Dad, Grandma, or Grandpa. Arm yourself with some topics that might be interesting to THEM.  Who knows where it goes from there.    

Alzheimers Insights and Research Topics

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Alzheimer's Insights and Research Topics

  • One out of two men and women eventually get Alzheimer's if they live long enough. Will YOU? Nine major risk factors that determine how lucky you'll be.
  • Do you carry the "Alzheimer's gene"? Scientists have identified the key genes responsible for causing Alzheimer's. Genetic testing can show you what's ahead for the future - good or bad.
  • These three prescription drugs can slow the breakdown of acetylcholine in the brain, thereby improving message transmission between nerve cells - resulting in improved memory and reasoning abilities.
  • Senior moment, mild cognitive impairment, or dementia: learn the difference for peace of mind
  • Recognize the 10 red-flag changes in mental functioning
  • Can smoking make you stupid? If you haven't kicked the habit and you're over 65, you're almost four times more likely than a nonsmoker to experience mental decline.  
  • Food for thought -preventing memory loss through better nutrition

Spring Arbor will be providing more thoughts like the ones listed above as well as more detailed information on these topics in future blog posts.  Come back often.

Things to consider when picking an Assisted Living Home for your loved ones

Joseph Coupal - Friday, April 09, 2010

Visit in Person
Brochures make any retirement, nursing, assisted living home look good … after all, most of these communities operate like businesses.  Be sure to visit Spring Arbor to see how our staff interacts with the residents and each other. This will give you a good sense of the true environment of a Spring Arbor community.  

Social Life
Planned activities and events are important to residents in assisted living communities.  They're a significant part of keeping your loved one active and sharp.  Ask a community representative for the activity calendar and be sure to meet the Activity Director to learn more about the overall program and how activities are based on individual resident interests.

Investigate Safety and Security
Make sure safety and security at the assisted living residence is obvious and a priority.  Spring Arbor residents have access to on-site staff 24 hours a day.

Dementia and Nutritional Health

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, April 06, 2010

At Spring Arbor, we know residents with dementia have nutrition needs and may experience involuntary weight loss.  In fact on a national basis, approximately 90% of all patients with Alzheimer's disease lose weight.  Studies indicate that unintentional weight loss may increase mortality and reduce resistance to infections.  Residents with advanced stages of dementia also are at risk for malnutrition, dehydration, and dysphagia.  Good nutritional care can help to prevent these serious complications and others.

Spring Arbor works closely with residents and family members to ensure nutritional needs are met.  The Cottage offers the planned programming to focus on the resident’s abilities and not their losses.  A proper nutrition program is a significant focus for all of us at Spring Arbor Living.