Monthly Archives: June 2016

Living Life Well in Your Retirement Years

There are many factors that go into choosing a retirement community.  Everything from financial planning to healthcare, apartment preferences, staff personalities, dining options, amenities – the list goes on and on.  While these are all important factors in making a final decision, one vital piece of the overall puzzle can often go overlooked:

_K0C8110Will my loved one have opportunities to get to know other residents?

It is not until after your loved one moves into a retirement community that they can truly take advantage of the fellowship opportunities available to them in their new home.  At Primrose, the Life Enrichment Coordinator will spend time getting to know your loved one after they move in.  The LEC works to provide opportunities for residents to participate in a variety of activities together.  As residents participate in these activities, they get to know one another better and great friendships develop.  There are many things to do and places to go at Primrose and there are lots of people to share the experience with.  It is these collective shared experiences that will help ensure that residents have a wonderful time living and learning at Primrose.

Being physically and socially healthy

Being in good health is about more than just eating right and exercising.  It is about the entire spectrum of our wellbeing and the overall enrichment of our lives.  Investing in our social wellness is just as important as being physically fit – especially since we are naturally wired to connect with people socially.  When we heed that physical instinct to be with others, our bodies benefit.

“We are profoundly shaped by our social environment and we suffer greatly when our social bonds are severed,” said Matthew Lieberman, Scientist and author of the book, Social: Why our Brains Are Wired to Connect, in an interview with Scientific American“The fact is that our well-being depends on our connections with others,” he added.

As you research senior living options, look for a community that encourages residents to do things together and to maintain friendships and contacts outside the retirement community as well.  Take advantage of opportunities to attend events and to enjoy a meal or two with residents before making a final decision.  These kinds of experiences will give you a better glimpse into what everyday life will be like in a community.  You may also want to ask what programs the Life Enrichment Coordinator has in place to encourage residents to continue pursuing lifelong skills and interests after they have moved in.

If you have any questions about what Primrose has to offer, feel free to contact us at www.primroseretirement.com We would be honored to assist you in your journey.

The Importance of Memory Care

_K0C6989According to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 39.6% of residential care community residents have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease or other types of dementia.  The same is true for approximately 20% of current Primrose assisted living residents, and the need for memory care support continues to grow rapidly.

Improving Resident Care

In keeping with one of its core values, Relentless Improvement, Primrose is working to better support its current and future residents’ needs by providing person-centered memory care services.  Primrose Executive Director of Nursing, Kathy Gerdes, explains: “After surveying our communities and learning that we had a need for dementia support among our assisted living residents, we began researching how we could improve their care,” said Gerdes.  “It was during this period of research that Primrose made the decision to move forward in providing memory care services,” she added.

Primrose sought assistance from Jayne Clairmont and Nancy Schier Anzelmo – consultants and national leaders in the care of those with dementia.  This marked the start of a year-long journey in the development of a signature memory care program for Primrose.  “With the help of our consultants and architectural group, we were able to design a contemporary memory care community that will facilitate a person-centered care approach,” Gerdes said.  “It will allow both small and large group activities, quiet spaces, an outdoor courtyard, and apartments designed to calm and relax our residents.  What will truly set us apart, though, is getting to know each resident and developing a unique plan of care built around their individual needs.  In the end, it is all about comfort, safety, well-being, and quality care,” Gerdes added.

Now is the Time

“It is a natural progression for Primrose to provide memory care services,” said BJ Schaefbauer, Primrose President.  “Moving into the future, we plan to add memory care in all of our new markets.  It is a good fit for us since we already offer independent living and assisted living services,” he added.  In certain markets, like Newburgh, Indiana, Primrose includes stand-alone memory care communities alongside their combined assisted/independent living counterparts.  In other locations, like Rogers, Arkansas, assisted living and memory care are combined in one community.

“Primrose has established a reputation for excellent care,” Gerdes said.  “We look forward to carrying out this standard of quality in our memory care services well,” she added.

If you are researching memory care options for a loved one, Primrose would be honored to assist you in your journey.  Just visit www.primroseretirement.com for more information.

Loneliness and Isolation – Enemies of Good Health

As seniors age, they inevitably begin seeing friends and loved ones they have known for decades decline in health and, in some cases, pass away.  It can be difficult to adjust to this new reality, and can have a negative impact on a person’s health.

The n_K0C7717egative effects of isolation

In fact, Brigham Young University recently conducted a study on loneliness and social isolation as risk factors for mortality.  What they found is that the overall life expectancy of people dealing with these issues is impacted in the same way as it is for those struggling with substance abuse and obesity.  The data, taken from over 3 million participants who took part in 35-years of published studies, found that loneliness, isolation and living on your own can increase the risk of premature death by an average of 29%.

Additionally, a University of Chicago study points out that loneliness is associated with elevated levels of cortisol, a stress hormone that increases the risk of stroke and heart attack.  It also has a negative impact on sleep patterns, resulting in less rest, which can compromise the immune system and make people more susceptible to sickness.

Enjoy fellowship with new friends

The simple truth is that healthy relationships make for healthier and happier lives.  For many, their fondest memories have been built around experiences that they shared with other people.  As we age, it becomes more important than ever to continue developing relationships and sharing in new experiences together.

If you have a loved one currently suffering from the effects of loneliness and isolation, they may benefit from living in a community like Primrose – enjoying fellowship with other seniors in a safe, supportive environment.  Many of our residents come from the same situation as your loved ones, and understand the emotions that they may be feeling.

Primrose is a beautiful, vibrant community where people come and go as they please.  There is always something to do – whether it be a pool tournament in our pub, a group outing to a local restaurant or an impromptu gathering of friends in your apartment.  We hope that you will consider stopping by for a visit with your loved one so that you can get to know our residents and staff.  Come see what Primrose can do for you!

For more information, feel free to visit www.primroseretirement.com any time.  If you still have additional questions, we would be honored to help you – contact info for each of our communities can be found on the website.

5 of the Biggest Senior Living Fears

For many seniors, the idea of a retirement community conjures up negative thoughts.  Cold, sterile environments, a disturbing lack of privacy, deep loneliness, fear of not being accepted, loss of independence – all misconceptions of what modern senior living is really all about.  In fact, most of the fears surrounding the world of senior living are inaccurate.

Se_K0C6174nior Living Redefined:

In recent years, baby boomers have helped to re-shape the definition of senior living, and have been largely responsible for the destruction of these negative stereotypes.  In their place, what we have is an array of modern options in independent living, assisted living and memory care that offer seniors a lifestyle tailored to their unique emotional and physical needs as well as their personal hobbies and interests.

If you or a loved one are dealing with fear or anxiety over making a move to senior living, read on and get some answers to some of the most common senior living fears.

  1. I Will Lose My Independence

Those in need of some help with the activities of daily living often equate making a move to an assisted living community with giving up independence.  It is true that you will have help with some activities, like cleaning or managing medications.  But, because our nursing staff can take some of these responsibilities off your shoulders, you will be healthier and have more time to do the things you want to do – resulting in a greater level of independence.

  1. I Will Run Out of Money

Senior living can seem financially overwhelming.  With some solid financial planning, however, and a little help from Social Security or Veterans Administration benefits, senior living can often times cost the same as living at home.  In fact, if you figure in things like lawn care, home repair, mortgage payments, insurance, utilities, cable TV etc…it may cost less!  Rest assured, though, if there does come a time where a move becomes a necessity – either for financial or physical reasons – Primrose will work with you proactively to help you find an alternative and make the transition smooth and hassle-free.

  1. I’m Afraid I Won’t be Accepted

It can be hard to move away from what is familiar.  We all develop a sense of comfort that comes with living in the same home, on the same street, with the same neighbors, for so many years.  The thought of changing your surroundings and getting comfortable living in a community full of people you may not know, can be intimidating.  One thing to remember, though, is that most of our residents experienced that same fear when they first moved to Primrose.  What they quickly discovered, and what you will discover as well, is that there are so many opportunities to socialize and engage in activities with people who share your interests in common, you’ll begin to develop friendships almost immediately.  Whether it be worship, group outings, travel clubs, community service opportunities, book clubs, gardening groups etc…there truly is something for everyone at Primrose.

  1. My Family Will Forget About Me

It is perfectly normal to worry about being alone, especially if regular time with your family and friends has traditionally been a big part of your life.  Moving into senior living, though, does not mean that you have to lose those relationships.  Primrose makes it easy for family and friends to come visit any time.  In fact, as a Primrose resident, you may find that you spend more quality time together with loved ones than ever before – especially if they played the role of caregiver when you were at home.  Primrose fills that role for them, allowing you to truly enjoy your time together, distraction-free.

  1. I am not Old Enough, or Sick Enough to Come to Primrose

As we age, and as our friends pass away or relocate, we can tend to stay at home and become increasingly isolated from others.  Loneliness often creeps in, followed by depression and a decline in health.  By contrast the supportive, community-oriented atmosphere of Primrose provides greater social contact and an outlet for creative energy.  Our residents often say that they wish they had moved here sooner because they have so much fun living a worry-free lifestyle where they can do as they please, when they please without the responsibility of home-ownership.  They chose Primrose to begin a new chapter in their lives – one full of new friends, new experiences and new opportunity – and we hope you will to!

If you are interested in learning more about Primrose, you’re welcome to visit www.primroseretirement.com for more information.   If you have questions, or if you’d like to set up a tour of our community, feel free to reach out to us from the website and we would be honored to help you.