5 Things to Invest Your Time In After Retirement

Most aging adults believe that retirement will be a much deserved period of relaxation and leisure. However, things rarely tend to go as planned. According to a study, the lack of stimulation and productive activities is a major cause of depression among retirees.

When the retirement phase starts, most people go through what’s called a honeymoon phase for the first 6 to 10 months. But after that, they crave for a more productive way to spend their golden years for a more happy and successful retirement.

Here are some ways you can use your retirement time in a more fulfilling way.

Travel

A smart way to plan for your retirement is to have enough funds that can help you enjoy spontaneous trips whenever you want. You can choose to go for local trips if your budget is stretched tight. Try to become a tourist in your own state or hometown. Check out the latest restaurants, bars, and entertainment venues that are easily accessible. Get memberships to local libraries and art museums and enjoy quiet afternoons with friends.

Learn Something New

You’re never too old to stop learning new things. Try your hand at some new hobbies such as painting, cooking gourmet food, playing an instrument that you always wanted to, or engage in games that stimulate your brain.

Volunteer

Volunteering is probably the most rewarding activity to engage in. Not only does it make you feel good about doing something good, but your contributions also improve someone else’s life. Teach at the local church, give your time to play with orphan children, or serve food to the homeless at your local soup kitchens.

Get a Part-Time Job

Being retired doesn’t mean you can’t work anymore. The local community centers and YMCAs appreciate any help they can get and have plenty of part-time opportunities available. This way you don’t have to worry about investing too much time and work stress. You can enjoy the extra pocket money while getting a sense of accomplishment at the same time!

Expand Your Social Circle

Contrary to popular misconception, being a retired individual doesn’t mean you have to be a recluse. Get out, go to a local bar, meet new people, go to social gatherings near your home, spend more time with your family, engage in spirited conversations, and make new friends! Don’t let the fact that you’ve retired prevent you from being a part of society!

AvantGarde Senior Living and Memory Care provides the ideal living environment for retirees in Calabasas, CA. We offer our residents the opportunity to interact with other people their age and enjoy various fun events arranged by our professional staff.

Our senior housing and assisted living community offers amenities such as movie theatres, outdoor BBQ, 8-hole putting course, free Wi-Fi, restaurant-style dining, hair salon, and so much more!

For more details about our comprehensive services for the seniors take a virtual tour of retirement facilities or call us at (818) 881-0055.


Stress Management in Seniors

Experiencing a little stress every now and then is quite common. Everyone has those days when you feel anxious and frustrated when your life isn’t going according to plan. When we’re young, our bodies are well-equipped to handle these stressful situations. But as we age, our resilience and ability to cope with stress decreases.

According to a study published by the Harvard Medical School, our body copes with stress differently as we age. As the fitness of our heart and the capacity of our lung declines, our body finds it difficult to bounce back from stressful situations. Stress hormones can also trigger neurodegenerative diseases such as dementia by flushing out the good hormones from our brains.

The good news is that with proper care and stress-busting tips, you can prevent it from taking a toll on your body. Here are some top tips to get you started:

Meditation and Mindfulness:

Mindfulness means being aware of your surrounding and your inner turmoil. It allows you to focus on the present and let go of the past. It can be done through meditating or through some form of yoga.

Whether it’s breathing exercises, silent meditation, or simple stretches, practicing mindful meditation daily has shown significant positive effects among older adults. It has also shown the physical benefits of helping them feel relaxed and better equipped to handle stressful situations.

Engage More:

Whether it’s expanding your social circle, spending more time with family, or playing with a pet, engaging with others can help improve your move and alleviate the stress levels quickly. Having someone to talk to and understand what you’re going through can have significant positive results. It’s a great way to manage stress and to keep your mental health in check.

Write It Down:

Maintaining a daily journal is a wonderful way to cope up with the daily stress and responsibilities life throws at you. Not only does it help you understand what you’re feeling, but it also provides a different perspective. Writing what’s bothering you can make it clearer for you and help you deal with it effectively.

Be Involved:

Find a new hobby or participate in a social activity. This can help you fill in the idle time that you may otherwise spend fretting about things you can’t control. Try doing volunteer work or add some recreational fun into your daily routine. This will help increase your feelings of happiness by allowing you to be more productive and help you engage with others as well.

AvantGarde Senior Living and Memory Care provides the best comprehensive care through retirement facilities, senior housing, and assisted living apartments in Calabasas, CA. We offer a range of daily activities and recreational opportunities to help improve the quality of life among seniors in California.

For more details and information about our excellent amenities and comprehensive services, take a virtual tour of our senior living facilities or give us a call at (818) 881-0055.


5 You Might Not Have Known About Assisted Living

Senior living designers have worked tirelessly for over a period 30 years to revolutionize the concept of assisted living and assisted living communities to make them feel more like home; this is all an effort to allow residents to enjoy a better quality of life.

Unfortunately, the lack of awareness regarding assisted living has people confused over whether or not it’s a good idea to live in an assisted community.

Here’s what you need to know about assisted living communities to ease your mind.

1. They Offer Various Levels of Care

Assisted living communities offer many different levels of personal and medical care to suit the needs and interests of all their residents. For instance, some communities provide memory care for the elderly struggling with memory loss.

2. Every Community Is Unique

There’s no standard size or shape for assisted living communities. Each community has its own features, its amenities and varying levels of care it offers. For example, while one community might be traditionally designed, another one could be more modern in its entire set up. Make sure you visit the assisted living community in person to see if it suits your lifestyle before making your final decision.

3. Many Communities Are Pet-Friendly

Think you’ll have to let your furry friend go if you decide to live in an assisted living community? We’re happy to tell you that it isn’t true! Many communities understand the importance of companionship and so they offer senior people a chance to bring along their pets when they move in.

4. They Offer Many Opportunities To Socialize

Most people and their families have the impression that assisted living communities are boring and those living in them are lonely. But the truth is that assisted living communities offer a lot of opportunities to socialize and make friends. Residents participate in games and crafts, do regular exercise and go on trips together where they get the chance to know each other and spend quality time together.

5. People Can Make Their Own Schedules

Residents of an assisted living community aren’t bound by a strict schedule or timetable. In fact, they have the freedom and independence to decide what they want to do throughout the day. They also have caregivers to assist them with their schedules.

If you’re looking for an outstanding and comprehensive assisted living program in Calabasas, CA, you should get in touch with AvantGarde Senior Living and Memory Care.

We provide excellent retirement facilities and a spectrum of services tailored to the needs of all our residents.

Take a virtual tour of our community and connect with us today!


Senior Living Community Myths: Debunked

The United States Census Bureau stated in a 2017 report that, the number of seniors living in the US is approximately 47 million. By 2050, over a fifth of the country’s population is expected to be of people of over 65 years of age.

When such a rapid increase in the aging population is predicted, it’s imperative to start planning for the residence of the elderly. Currently, there are more than 3,327 senior living communities in the US that provide housing, medical care and personal care to the retired people. But the truth is that the misconceptions surrounding senior living communities have the elderly avoiding them like the plague.

The benefits of living in a senior community are many, which is why we’ve taken it upon ourselves to debunk the myths you might have about it.

Here’s what you shouldn’t believe about senior living communities.

Myth 1: People Living in Senior Communities are Dissatisfied

One of the biggest myths about senior living communities is that the residents are unhappy and dissatisfied. This couldn’t be more wrong. According to a survey conducted by the Assisted Living Federation of America (ALFA), 94% of the people are satisfied with the quality of life they get to enjoy living in senior communities.

Myth 2: Senior Housing Communities Feel like Institutions

If you imagine long white hallways, bleach odors and bright fluorescent lights when they think of senior living housing, then you should know that can’t be further from the truth. Senior living communities are extremely comfortable, homely and pleasant; they have beautiful décor, luxurious rooms and natural lighting; they’re nothing like a hospital.

Myth 3: Senior Living Communities Have Minimal Care

The residents’ safety, medical care and security are the top priorities at senior living communities. There are highly trained and experienced medical practitioners and caregivers present at the communities, 24/7 in case of any emergencies and to take care of the senior members’ everyday needs.

Myth 4: Senior Living Communities Aren’t Affordable

Senior living communities offer a wide range of amenities, housing, medical care and services at all-inclusive rates. The average cost of living in a senior community is comparatively lesser than living at home.

Looking for a luxurious senior living community in Calabasas, CA? Consider AvantGarde Senior Living and Memory Care.

We’re a certified Positive Approach to Care (PAC) community, providing excellent retirement facilities, top-notch services and amenities to suit the unique interests and needs of all our residents.

Take a virtual tour of our community and connect with us for more information.


Health Guidelines for Seniors

Anyone who has gone through aging or has seen a senior loved one plough through time’s tribunals knows that aging does not happen in a vacuum. It has its ups and downs, and is characterized by many health upheavals. The body goes through significant changes, thus with time, the needs of an aging senior change as well. One can no longer abide by the same health rules that applied to them in their adulthood or youth.

If you or someone you love is aging, it’s best to follow some health guidelines to ensure that the aging process is as graceful and painless.

The Physical Changes that Come with Aging

To start with, one begins losing muscle mass, and the bones start going hollow. This is reflected in the many complications of the musculoskeletal system such as arthritis, which affects 54 million people in the US.

Weight gain and weight loss are both possibilities since as we age, we tend to move about lesser. The lack of physical activity means we’re burning fewer calories, and thus putting on excess weight. On the other hand, weight loss is associated with not consuming the right nutrients in our daily diet, or with chronic illness.

Any of these complications can have potentially long-term and harmful consequences, such as the development of diabetes or heart disease.

However, with the right health guidelines, it’s easy enough to take good care of your senior loved ones.

What to Do to Keep Your Senior Loved One Healthy as They Age

While it’s inevitable that the body will go through changes as someone ages, given below are measures you can take to ensure good health. Always remember that a Body Mass Index (BMI) ranging between 18.5 and 24.9 is healthy for seniors. Similarly, you can gauge weight-based issue by measuring the waist: exceeding 35 and 40 inches for women and men respectively are indicators of subsequent weight issues.

Additionally, follow these guidelines:

  • Keep up with a nutrient-dense diet. Low-fat and sugar-free, with more fruits and veggies incorporated into the daily diet
  • Control the portion sizes, and balance between excessive consumption and malnutrition
  • Chalk out physical activity for the day, even if it’s only for a couple of minutes
  • Fresh air is important since it aids in blood circulation

Find a Suitable Assisted LivingCommunity

If you or a senior loved in is in need of professional assisted care, look no further than AvantGarde Senior Living and Memory Care based in Tarzana. We offer customized care for our senior members, which include independent living, assisted living, and memory care.

Get in touch with us today to know more.


Staying Calm while Caring for the Elderly

Growing and aging is a part of life, and many of us have been at stages where we found caring for our loved ones calmly was difficult to do at the same time. Howsoever, tough as it might seem, we’re always anchored by our love and regard for the person in question, and are always looking for ways that can help with the caregiving options.

It’s understandable that keeping calm when faced with the challenge of caring for a senior loved one who might be going through a tough time is difficult, but it isn’t impossible.

It may take additional effort on your part, but you’ll get done with it in the end. To help you out, we’ve put together a list of tips and guidelines:

Plan in Advance

Whether it’s a doctor’s appointment or your visit to an assisted living community near you, it’s best always to plan ahead so that when the time finally comes, you will have lesser stress to deal with. Your parents, having been already told about this appointment, will have plenty of time to plan ahead.

Breathe

Whenever faced with a stressful situation and when you think you’re edging close to an emotional reaction, remember to breathe. Take deep breaths, and focus on rhythmic inhalation and exhalation. This will keep you distracted from whatever is stressing you out and help you stay more focused.

Exercise

Let’s say you’ve had an argument or an altercation with a senior loved one. You can’t, obviously, react to them angrily. What do you do to let steam off? Release endorphins. You can do this best through exercise. We’re not saying you should start doing crunches immediately after an argument with your parents, but at least go out, take a walk, breathe in some fresh air—and you’ll feel the difference.

Don’t Dwell on the Negative

If you keep thinking about the “ifs” and “buts” you’ll never get out of the rut. You’ll be stuck in a restrictive, negative rut that’s no good for you. Most importantly, it won’t help you calm down. On the other hand, what will help you is focusing on the positives. If your parent, in their distress and anger, said something bad to you, you can undo it by focusing on the good things they’ve said and done.

Looking for a Memory Care Option Near You in California?

AvantGarde Senior Living and Memory Care is a Tarzana-based caregiving community that extends customized memory care solutions for its senior members. Contact us today to find out all about the amenities we offer.


The Early Signs of Alzheimer’s

Alzheimer’s is the 6th most fatal cause in the U.S., and affects every 1 in 3 seniors. Of the many forms of dementia, this is the most common, characterized by memory loss and other mental disabilities.

Together, these minor complications become a hurdle in daily life, which is why the disease becomes such a cause for concern. When detected at its later stages, it can be difficult to manage. However, if you can detect the early signs of Alzheimer’s, dealing with it becomes far easier.

And if you’re wondering how you can tell the early signs off, we’ve got a list ready.

Inability to Solve Problems

If you or a loved one you know has begun having problems solving problems—especially if these are very basic issues—then Alzheimer’s might be on the go. Look out for minor problems in daily life, such as calculations and expenses, answering questions coherently, etc.

The Familiar Becomes Taxing

Often, with the onslaught of dementia, familiar tasks become difficult and confusing for the patient. Even the minutest of tasks, such as scrambling eggs or brushing teeth, become unimportant and vanish from the patient’s routine, signaling dementia.

Inability to Determine Place and Time

If you observe that your loved one is having difficulties determining where they are or what time it is, this could be related to dementia. They will also have difficulty making plans and deciding what they want to do in the future because they’ll have lost sense of time.

Loss of Vision

Although the loss of vision on its own isn’t necessarily related to dementia, if you observe that your loved one is losing vision in addition to experiencing any other symptom on this list, dementia could very well be causing it. This could range from not being able to judge distances to having difficulty reading or watching TV.

Losing Things

Although many of us are often forgetful, let’s not forget that if your loved one is frequently losing things at an elderly age, they could be moving toward Alzheimer’s. It could be something as minute as forgetting a key, but that’s the key to your quest.

Forgetting

The most damning of things to happen, especially when a parent is involved, is when they begin to forget you. They might not remember your name or not remember who you are entirely, they might act confused or scared. Whichever the case, make sure you’re not dismissing any signs of Alzheimer’s that you should be aware of.

Looking for a senior living option in California? Choose from the assisted, independent, and memory care options being offered at AvantGarde Senior Living and Memory Care today.


Loving a Parent Who No Longer Remembers Who You Are

Dementia in general and Alzheimer’s, in particular, are difficult to live through, especially when a loved one is afflicted by them. Alzheimer’s is the most damning of all of the types of dementia and this is made evident by the fact that as of 2019, 5.8 million people in the United States are affected by the disease. And while it may, on paper, sound like any other degenerative disease, its after-effects and consequences are long-lasting and deeply hurting for a reason.

Why Alzheimer’s Hurts So Much

Even keeping aside the physical pain that you know your senior loved ones are going through; knowing someone you love is afflicted is painful for you. As a caregiver, and more importantly as a child, you’re wrecked by the knowledge that your parent is going through a phase of forgetfulness.

In the beginning, it isn’t perhaps so bad. They forget little things, can’t do basic math, and maybe lose one set of keys. But it gets progressively worse. Eventually, forgetting time and places transforms into forgetting names and persons. They begin having difficulties performing minute daily tasks, the kind of tasks you saw them do without worry for many years, such as cleaning and cooking.

And the worst blow hits when they no longer remember who you are. You become a presence in their vision, but are never acknowledged with a spark of recognition. It goes without saying that this can be a jarring experience for anyone.

How to Cope with the Experience

It’s tough, yes. But at the end of the day, they’re still your parents who gave birth to you and brought you up. They stood with you all your life, and are now at a stage where they no longer are in control of what fate befalls them. You must remember that this is a situation far beyond your or their control—and that dwelling on negative thoughts and questions won’t help.

What will help is you focusing on the positives instead: ask yourself what is it that you can do to make their situation a little better?

You can give them the care and love they deserve at this point. It doesn’t really matter whether they remember you or not. What matters is that you’re here for them, no matter what. Their brain might have lost the connection, but somewhere in the deepest recesses of their heart, they will know who you are and what you’re doing for them.

They deserve nothing less.

Looking for a Senior Living Community for Your Loved Ones?

AvantGarde Senior Living and Memory Care in Tarzana is a senior care community that offers assisted, independent, and memory care options for senior members. Several amenities are also offered to our community, such as sports, television, and socializing avenues.


Fun Activities That are Loved by Seniors

When we think of old age, we think of rather boring images: people sitting on benches in parks, Forrest Gump Style, and people watching City Lights as they get their medication for the week. This is probably because our understanding of old age makes us want to think that seniors aren’t really interested in anything that’s “fun.”

The truth couldn’t be far from this.

Because at the end of the day, age is after all just a number—and seniors love having fun just as much as we do. Of course, their ages mean that the forms of fun that appeal to them aren’t exactly what interests us: such as memes or Fortnite.

There are other activities that appeal to them, though. And some of these have been discussed in this blog.

Reading

Yes, believe it or not, your senior loved ones come from an era where blogs and podcasts weren’t a thing. They grew up reading text in black and white, such as newspapers and books, and most seniors still love the pleasure of going through a good book. They might have vision loss that stops them from reading, though. This problem can be easily resolved through audiobooks, which are less straining for seniors.

Socializing

You might think that your senior loved ones have isolated themselves and don’t like talking, but you forget that you aren’t exactly the same generation. Your problems are different, your stories are different, and hence your priorities are different. Seniors like talking and socializing, but with people more in line with their own age and generation. An assisted living community where others like them are members is the best place to allow their social side to flourish.

Walking

Our seniors probably weren’t as obsessed with the gym as we are, and their fix for physical activity came mostly from walking. You must remember that this isn’t something they did as part of their regular workout routine but rather opted for because they walked to school, to the nearby marketplace, and so on.

The Television

The television was already making waves when your seniors were as young as you, and they grew up watching some great television (and definitely better songs compared to what we have in store these days). If you think they’re not interested in the television, it’s probably because they’re not interested in what you’re watching.

Looking for a Senior Living Community with Fun Activities?

AvantGarde Senior Living and Memory Care has a range of members from all over California who benefit from the various amenities that the community offers. These include a lot of fun activities, so be sure to get in touch with us today!


Are Your Senior Parents Refusing to Let Go of Bad Behavior?

We know how hard it is to cope with an aging senior loved one, and to see them go through the health complications that come with it. There are times when even the best of us lose patience, and are moved to say or do things that we know we’ll regret within minutes. It’s a tricky, demanding situation, which requires a lot of care and poise on our part.

If you’ve been coping with a senior loved one who has been going through a bad time and don’t know how to handle them at their worst, don’t worry. It’s difficult and demanding, yes, but not entirely impossible to handle them.

We’ve got some guidelines to help you along the way.

Handling Rage and Outbursts

Parents will be parents, and at this tender age, their rage might mushroom into something bigger—something you’re not entirely sure how to handle. First off, you being the younger and responsible individual, need to keep your wits about you.

Do not give in to emotion, and do not retaliate. Instead, try working out what might be causing this outburst. In the case of seniors, it’s usually distress or anxiety that has become far too unbearable. Once you understand the problem, talking them down is easier.

Handling Abuse

In some cases, the senior loved one might even turn on the caregiver and extend emotional, physical, or psychological abuse. This is the tougher case to handle, since you have to bear the direct brunt of an enraged parent, especially one that you’re trying so hard to help.

First of all, we know it hurts. But know that it’s not your parents who are propagating this behavior. It’s probably an illness or a grave psychological misgiving on their part that’s making them do or say hurtful things.

Remember that they’re still your parents. They will listen to you if you tell them how hard they’re making it for you. Don’t make it about them, make it about you—tell them how their abusive behavior makes you feel. No parent, no matter how senior or ill, can see a child in pain. They might not realize that their behavior is hurting you—but once you tell them, they will.

Get Help from Professionals

If the behavior of your senior loved ones has reached a point of no return, perhaps you shouldn’t be taking on the burden alone. It’s best to let the professional caregivers at AvantGarde Senior Living and Memory Care in Tarzana take on the job. Our customized assisted, independent, and memory care living options are sure to help. To benefit from the many amenities being offered and get the best help for your parents, get in touch with us today.