Offering a wealth of knowledge – but also potential new hazards – it can be hard to determine whether the Internet is a treasure or a Pandora’s box. There’s no going back to the world before the web, but Nashville seniors can use some savvy to utilize the best of cyberspace while insulating themselves from many of the risks.
At Maybelle Carter, we take residents on a virtual trip to faraway lands like our China voyage on January 8th. Even though the Internet is becoming something we take for granted, it’s still pretty extraordinary to think that having a real-time conversation with someone in China is just a few clicks away. Opening up a larger world poses opportunities and dangers in equal measure.
Today seniors are increasingly comfortable on the web, using it to:
Unfortunately, others may use the Internet to target older Americans via emails and websites. Below are some common sense rules from the real world that also apply in the online world…
If Something Seems Too Good to Be True, It Probably Is!
Scammers try to lure seniors into surrendering their personal information by claiming they’ve won a prize or gift, but not all that glitters is gold. Retirement savings make a tempting target for criminals who want to deceive us. If something feels suspicious, trust your gut and tread carefully, cybersecurity experts advise.
Don’t Judge a Book by Its Cover
The Internet affords people the luxury of anonymity. Behind it, they may behave in ways they never would in the “real world” – pretending to be organizations we trust so they can try to trick us into telling them information they can use to steal our identities, money or credit. Be aware that most banks or companies will not ask for you to update your personal information from an email.
Look Before You Leap
Don’t open files attached to emails if they come from someone you don’t know. If you get an email from your bank or another seemingly reputable company, don’t click the direct link because it is easy to create a website that looks legit. Instead, go to your browser and type in the web address there. Don’t share personal information with a stranger such as a social security number or insurance policy numbers because anyone can pose as someone they’re not, possibly someone you’d normally trust. Once information goes online, it’s not always erasable, so be careful about what you share.
A Chain is As Strong as Its Weakest Link
Common sense precautions include using software protection against viruses, spyware, and malware. Avoid creating usernames or passwords that someone might be able to guess (or using the same username and password on multiple websites). Seniors who are comfortable online need to provide help to those who may be more easily tricked. Be sure someone isn’t looking over your shoulder in public when entering a password, and avoid connecting to public wireless, or WiFi, that does not require a password to connect to the signal. Update software whenever new security patches are released. If you aren’t sure about something, ask a trusted family member or a reputable computer retailer.
In the same way you keep your wallet or purse shielded from bad people in everyday life, you need to protect your information online. It is prudent to watch your bank or credit card statements for unusual transactions. If you sell or discard computers or mobile devices, be sure you wipe the hard drive to remove files and information stored on it.
There are many ways criminals can harm ordinary people, young and old, but with these common sense precautions and questioning things that appear suspicious, seniors can feel more comfortable enjoying the positive aspects of the Internet – seeing a new grandchild’s face on Skype or taking care of some business with a few clicks instead of getting out in the cold and risking a potential fall.
Written by Steven Stiefel
We all want to imagine that our futures will be filled with better days than our pasts, but a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s is tough to accept because it brings with it a lot of uncertainty. The positive is that the sooner the condition is discovered and arrangements for caregiving established, the lesser the disruption in the lives of the affected senior and his or her family.
After the diagnosis, families should take steps to prepare, according to the Alzheimer’s Association (AA). These processes include:
At Maybelle Carter’s Remembrance Village, our caregivers are specifically trained and receive continuing education to care for memory impaired residents. We have licensed nurses on staff 24/7. And our newly designed secured accommodations create a stress-free, comfortable environment with less confusion.
These can be difficult conversations to have, but according to the Alzheimer’s Association, waiting until a crisis hits to get affairs in order can make the process even more arduous and emotionally taxing on everyone involved. They recommend involving well-qualified medical and legal advisors for the initial diagnosis and pulling together resources after.
The Alzheimer’s Association offers a free, customized planning tool called Alzheimer’s Navigator that can help families map out a plan. It can be found at https://www.alzheimersnavigator.org/ The organization also offers online resources that let people know they are not alone in facing such challenges.
To learn more about Remembrance Village, call (844) 602-2602.
Nashville seniors see our share of snow and ice each winter. As we approach the holidays, it’s a good time to come up with a game-plan for keeping safe and arriving to springtime incident-free.
Maybelle Carter residents and their families are fortunate in that they enjoy the peace of mind that comes from having a safe, secure residence where their physical and emotional well-being are the entire focus. There are definite advantages to living in a space with staffing and supplies to handle even major winter events.
For those seniors who choose to age in place in a private home, family caregivers need to carefully assess potential troubles as far as ventilation, backup in case of electrical outages and having enough food, water and medicine to last for several days. It’s possible for the homebound senior with mobility issues to be stranded in place for days without family able to access them. In such cases, it pays to have a reliable neighbor who is willing to check in on your senior loved one to make sure they are warm enough and not suffering.
Hypothermia is always a risk associated with the colder months. Part of the reason seniors and the very young are more susceptible to bitterly cold temperatures is a lack of activity (due to mobility issues) combined with health conditions such as diabetes that make it more challenging for the body to keep heat. Key to making winter more pleasant is maintaining heat in the home without allowing it to escape, as well as making sure the homebound senior knows about approaching severe weather and has a fully charged phone to maintain communication with his or her caregiver.
At Maybelle Carter, we offer transportation services to residents so they do not have to get out in the weather alone – a move that can be extremely risky in frigid temperatures. Outings and regular activities are part of what it means to be in our community – a togetherness that positively affects the mental focus and well-being of our residents. It’s tough to get too overwhelmed by wintertime blues when entertainers, staffers and friends keep you occupied.
Assisted Living offers the best of both worlds: we respect a senior’s privacy while being available to help with the tasks of daily life. It’s a compromise that allows the parent to maintain their dignity while giving grown children reassurance that mom and/or dad are safe and well cared for. A side-effect that families might not consider is the time and effort they save no longer having to winterize the senior's home, shovel snow out of the driveway, deal with frozen pipes, etc.
Winter can be an especially dangerous time for people of all ages, as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention points out that most natural deaths occur around the holidays and winter months. A move to Assisted Living (even if it is just during the winter months) can be a precaution that seniors grow to love.
For more information on relocating to our community, please contact our marketing coordinators at (615) 868-2290.
The ideal scenario for living out our Golden Years are carefree days packed with fulfilling experiences and social opportunities. For many, a senior living community such as Maybelle Carter provides just that kind of lifestyle.
Moving to a community such as this is appealing for sure, but the question that hovers over such a relocation is how to pay for long term care.
The seniors best positioned for the future have thought ahead earlier in adult life, either by building equity in property that they can sell to pay for their living expenses, putting money away into a savings account or possibly investing in a Long-Term Care Insurance policy.
The majority of assisted living costs are paid through personal finances of residents and/or their families, so Maybelle Carter seeks to educate the public so that the eventual move to a senior living community is a smooth transition free of financial worries about depleted funds.
Some mistakenly believe Medicare will cover the cost of assisted living, but that isn’t what the program was designed for. It does cover health expenses that seniors of a certain income may face, but it does not pay for assistance with daily tasks such as bathing, dressing, toileting, etc. Fees at Maybelle Carter are based on an evaluation process of how much help a resident needs performing these tasks.
We’re unlocking financial solutions to provide confidence and security for seniors and families. In toay’s world, that says a lot.
Some options to investigate:
These are just some of the financial solutions that can help residents move forward with confidence. For more information about these programs, please contact our marketing coordinators at (615) 868-2290.
Communication is constantly changing, with new technologies springing up seemingly every other day. The ways we talk to each other aren’t the same as they were even 10 years ago. One thing hasn’t gone away, though. We are still fascinated by stories and storytellers!
Seniors might not realize it, but their lives have been full of great stories to share with their families and friends. They have decades worth of wisdom and insight stored up and ready to share, but they might not know how appreciated it can be. This is where writing comes in.
“The life review process helps a person find meaning, value, and fulfillment. It gives the person a sense of self-worth and of value to others.”
– Dr. Augustine DiGiovanna, Salisbury State University
Not only can writing one’s “memoirs” be a learning experience for younger generations, it can be beneficial for the writer. Reflecting on their lives and writing their stories can become a new hobby for seniors! It can help keep their minds and imaginations active, helping them to make sense of events long past. Additionally, the opportunity to discuss and share these memories helps foster a sense of community and can help keep them from feeling isolated.
This becomes increasingly important if the senior is living in an assisted living facility like Maybelle Carter. Writing it not only a pleasant pastime but it also gives them a tangible way of passing on memories to their families someday.
If you’re unsure where to start in the writing process, here are some tips:
If you have trouble writing or typing, using a video or voice recorder is a great way to preserve your stories! There are also groups in various places across the country who get together to write and share their stories on a regular basis.
Have fun sharing the story of you!
Eventually, Nashville seniors face the reality that the children have grown up and moved into homes of their own, leaving empty nests that may have more space than they need and requiring more home maintenance than they can keep up with as they age. At the same time, the prospect of moving elsewhere can be frightening because we associate a lot of good memories to our homes and resist change.
But Maybelle Carter Retirement Life Community makes change look downright amazing. There are a lot of perks to living here, especially the evaporation of worries about lawns to mow and boredom sitting alone in front of a television, having to plan and prepare a meal, then clean dishes, etc. In our golden years, this is the time to simply enjoy life and let someone take care of us for a change.
Some seniors worry that they’re going to spend this stage of their lives in a cold, crowded facility where they lack privacy and dignity, but these are fundamental needs we respect. A visit to Maybelle Carter, perhaps talking to residents about how they like living here, can change attitudes and dispel misconceptions very easily.
Residents can decorate their apartments with cherished possessions and do not have to get rid of their beloved pets to live at Maybelle Carter. These precious companions are welcome here.
Our spacious Independent Living apartments offer your own laundry room, full kitchen and large bathroom, individually controlled central heat and air, and a ceiling fan in the living room. It’s just like living in an apartment elsewhere, except that emergency assistance is available within moments 24 hours a day, plus there’s someone to cook and clean, opportunities to socialize and the security that comes from living in a community.
Our Assisted Living program offers a higher degree of help with services to assist with getting to and from the dining room, in or out of the shower or tub, helping to dress, helping with grooming or getting to or from the bathroom, plus medication reminders and other little things that are more easily accomplished with help.
Maybelle Carter ensures the safety of our residents with a fire system complete with smoke detectors and sprinklers, emergency personnel on duty 24/7, a resident sign-in and out system, doors secured at 9 pm each evening, and floor rounds several times each night. This is peace of mind that simply cannot be matched by a family caregiver, even if the senior is living within a shared space with their grown children. We pride ourselves on the safety of our facility and the compassion of our staff.
With our month-to-month lease, seniors and their families have the flexibility to change the arrangement if a resident decides that life in our community isn’t for them. We’re betting once they sample life here and make friends, they’ll really enjoy the quality of life that we can offer. Call (615) 868-2290 to schedule a tour and free consultation.
Like country star Keith Urban sang, “It’s gonna be a long, hot summer.”
Temperatures are already climbing in Nashville, and that makes it extra important to stay comfortable, healthy, and safe. The heat can be extra hard on those with chronic illnesses, the very young, and furry friends who live outdoors.
Here are our top tips for staying as cool as Johnny Cash even when the mercury climbs:
Beware of dehydration. It’s easy for it to sneak up on you. The University of Chicago Medical Center found that 40% of heat-related fatalities in the U.S. were among people over 65. This is for a number of reasons, including naturally decreased water retention that comes with age, medications that may affect elders’ ability to stay hydrated, and issues with kidney function.
Symptoms of dehydration can include problems with walking or falling, dizziness or headaches, dry or sticky mouth and tongue, sunken eyes, inability to sweat or produce tears, rapid heart rate, low blood pressure or blood pressure that drops when changing from lying to standing, constipation and decreased urine.
Maybelle Carter’s staff of caregivers are trained to look out for symptoms like these and to help residents stay healthy and comfortable. However, friends and loved ones may want to take note of how they can stay equally refreshed during scorching Southern summers. Often by the time you feel thirsty, you’re already considerably dehydrated. Sip water throughout the day, and avoid drinks like coffee, tea, or soda that can contribute to dehydration even if they feel like they’re wetting your whistle. Skip alcoholic beverages in favor of mocktails, too, during the warmer months.
Avoid going outdoors when the sun’s rays are strongest and temperatures are highest. The sun’s ray’s heat things up and increase UV ray exposure from noon until late afternoon. Often temperatures peak between noon and 4 PM, depending on the weather. Stay inside where there is air conditioning or a fan and snack on foods like cucumbers, bell peppers, melon, or fruit instead of salty chips or pretzels.
If you lack air conditioning, there are plenty of places in Nashville you can head to beat the heat. See a movie, take a walk through your local shopping mall, the Nashville Public Library on Church Street, or grab a couple scoops at Jenni’s Splendid Ice Creams in East Nashville. Pinewood Social is a fun spot where you can grab a bite to eat, enjoy bowling indoors, or have a drink poolside. And of course, there is always the opportunity to catch a show at the Ryman Auditorium!
School is letting out for the summer and that’s a great opportunity to spend more time with the grandkids, nieces, nephews, or other special young people in your life. Luckily, there’s no shortage of fun things to do in Nashville with little ones, meaning you can give mom and dad a break and make some special memories. Here are four great outings you can enjoy together:
Just thirty miles north of Nashville in Portland, Tennessee is Bottom View Farm. They offer a wide range of family-friendly activities. Until May 17th their Spring Spectacular event features inflatable slides and trampoline, as well as pedal tractors, hayrides, a gold mine, live animals, and refreshments. You can call 615-633-2853 for more information. All summer and into autumn Bottom View Farm’s main attraction is in full swing, however, with berry picking. Kids are sure to love getting to learn about where their food comes from and will be proud of showing off what they picked themselves. With strawberries through June, blueberries and blackberries in July, apples in late summer through autumn, there’s many opportunities to enjoy life on the farm.
The Adventure Science Center lives up to its name with almost 200 hands-on exhibits to teach children about biology, physics, the five senses, the atmosphere, space, energy, and earth sciences. In addition to the regular exhibits there are also regular workshops, lectures, and summer camps. The Sudekum Planetarium has shows Tuesday through Friday and almost hourly on weekends showing 6.5 million stars, both as they appear over Nashville (without the light pollution) and even in the time of the Pharaohs!
Older kids and teenagers especially might enjoy the treasure trove of artifacts at the Hall of Fame. Through 2016 they have a special show on Dylan, Cash, ad the Nashville Cats, showcasing artists from Nashville who played with these legendary icons. This could be a great way to teach a special young person in your life about the way music has evolved and enduring artists who are popular once more with the next generation. What better way to share some of your unique memories, too, of favorite musicians, dances and concerts you’ve attended, and records you listened to than by getting the conversation started at the Hall of Fame!
Not only are there amazing animals to meet at the zoo, including elephants, giraffes, meerkats, kangaroos, and flamingos, but you can meet certain animals up close and personal through the Animal Encounters that take place at scheduled times on certain days in pre-determined sections of the park. Kids of all ages will love the chance to learn more about nature and animals in other countries, and there’s always something new to see at the zoo. You can also take the wee ones to Zoovie Nights when the Zoo plays movies like “Toy Story” and “Ice Age” on an inflatable screen. If they still have energy to burn, the kids will love the games, inflatables, music, crafts and after-hour access to the carousel that go on as well.
The weather is gorgeous, the kids are ready for summer adventures, and now is the time to explore Nashville together! This is just the tip of the iceberg, however. There’s so much more to do afar these outings get you started!
As Virgil Kraft once said, “Spring shows what God can do with a drab and dirty world.” Spring cleaning applies just as much to nature’s blossoms and fresh breezes as it does to how you tackle your home after winter. One of the perks of retirement living is that so many of the daily chores are taken care of, and cleaning takes place on the regular. Still, it can feel nice to refresh your life in a few simple ways to stay in tune with the spirit of the season. Here are our five times for senior spring cleaning:
As author Anne Lamott put it “I am going to try to pay attention to the spring. I am going to look around at all the flowers, and look up at the hectic trees. I am going to close my eyes and listen.” That’s a great resolution as we move into the season of warmer weather, beautiful blooms, and exciting possibilities. Spring is an especially exciting time in Nashville because it seems like everyone is eager to get out and shake things up after being cooped up during the winter.
One of the best ways to enjoy all that springtime has to offer is to go for a nature walk and appreciate Nashville’s beautiful native flowers. Warner Parks near Belle Meade has a diverse array of blossoms, and will be hosting a guided walk April 15th from 5-6:30 PM. Of course, you can always chart your own course throughout the next month when the flowers are at their peak. A similar event is taking place at Shelby Bottoms on April 11th from 2-3PM. [www.nashville.gov/Parks-and-Recreation/Nature-Centers-and-Natural-Areas/Shelby-Bottoms-Nature-Center.aspx] And of course, Cheekwood In Bloom is a must-see event that lasts until April 26th. The Cheekwood botanical gardens are beautiful year round, but spring is when they are at their very best with over 150,000 bulbs bursting into life and 30,000 daffodils carpeting the ground.
For sports fans, one of the major joys of springtime is the start of baseball season. The Nashville Sounds first home game is April 17th against Colorado Springs. There are so many sights and sounds during a good baseball game that its easy to follow Lamott’s advice to pay attention. A baseball game would also be a great way to spend time with friends and relatives— especially grandchildren and other little ones.
There’s no shortage of events in April, either, making Music City an especially exciting place to be. From Nashville Fashion Week April 7-11 to the Film Festival April 16-25th there’s something to suit a variety of interests. Not only will there be a chance to see some beautiful clothing and accessories created by hometown designers, many shops and boutiques throughout Nashville will be having specials and sales. It’s the perfect week to grab your girlfriends and hit the stores. Or you could call up a friend or family member and make an outing to see one of 254 exciting new movies from around the world and a chance to learn from the actors and filmmakers at panel discussions and workshops.
With so many exciting options, it’s easy to see why so many seniors choose to retire in Nashville. There’s never a dull moment in Music City, and you’ll find that your golden years gleam just as bright as the certified gold records adorning many a country star’s walls. From the great outdoors to the great fun of Nashville’s cultural offerings, this spring looks like it will be hard to beat!