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Helping Seniors Prevent Falls

Now is a great time to take some simple steps to make sure the only things falling this autumn are LEAVES.

Falling is a serious issue for seniors and the chances of falling increase with age. While there are various reasons for falling down (medications or health issues) a lot of falls can be prevented  by planning ahead.

If you must have throw rugs, make sure they are skid-proof.

If you must have throw rugs, make sure they are skid-proof.

1. Look over your medications. Take all your medications (including prescriptions and over-the-counter medicine) to your next doctor’s appointment. By having your doctor review what your are taking, he or she might want to change doses or try a different medication if it makes you dizzy.

2. Make a fall prevention plan with your doctor.  Your healthcare provider may want to check your balance, leg strength, blood pressure and heart rate or may want to examine how you walk and your vision. He or she might have you do strengthening exercises or recommend a cane or a change in shoes.

3. Make your home safe.  There are a number of simple things you can do to minimize the risk of falling at home:

  • Make sure pathways are clear of cord and clutter
  • Remove loose carpets and throw rugs. If you insist on having throw rugs, use rugs with nonskid backing.
  • Make sure your house is well-lit, especially at the top and bottom of stairs or inside and outside the doors to your home.

    Make sure all rooms and hallways are well lit. Add grab bars in the bathroom

    Make sure all rooms and hallways are well lit. Add grab bars in the bathroom

  • Add grab bars near the toilet and bath tub, and use slip-proof mats in tub or shower.
  • Wear firm shoes that aren’t slippery.  Wear non-skid socks.

4.  If you have a fall, talk with your doctor about what might have caused it. Did you trip over something, feel dizzy or lose your balance?  Figuring out what caused the fall can be helpful in avoiding another one.

Falling is very  traumatic for seniors and can have devastating results.  For more information on preventing falls visit Healthinaging.org

Wearing non-skid socks can help prevent falls.

Wearing non-skid socks can help prevent falls.

Aspen Senior Care is dedicated to improving the lives of seniors in our community! We do this by providing quality in-home care and day center programs, and helping seniors and their families connect with support groups, health services and other resources in the community.  If you are in need of assistance or have any questions, please give us a call at 801-224-5910 or visit our website at aspenseniorcare.com.

Aspen Helps Seniors Live at Home

Maybe you’ve noticed some of the independent and assisted livings springing up around Utah county. The state of Utah has seen an increase in it’s overall population and although Utah is considered a “young” state, our senior population is growing at a fast pace.

According to a recent report published by The Utah Foundation:

  • It’s estimated that by 2030 seniors in Utah will make up more than 13% of the state’s population.  The majority of these seniors want to stay in their own homes.
  • There are approximately 336,000 caregivers in Utah who provide 90% of the care for seniors. Less than 1% of caregivers use state or local support services.
  • Transportation services for seniors are scarce.

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Aspen’s mission is to help seniors in Utah live comfortably and independently in their own homes for as long as possible.  We work hand in hand with family caregivers to provide quality care to seniors who want to stay at home.

Our services include:

  • Caring companionship
  • Help after hospital stay
  • Light housekeeping and meal preparation, laundry, etc.
  • Bathing and hygiene
  • Transportation and errands
  • Hospice care
  • Alzheimer’s and dementia care
  • Medication reminders
  • Respite care for family caregivers
  • Information and referral service

We are licensed, bonded and insured. We hire caregivers with strong family values who are committed to caring for seniors with love, compassion and skill.

Aspen Senior Care also has a transportation program for seniors – Aspen Senior Rides!

It’s convenient and simple – just call our office and schedule rides for any day and  time. We provide door-to-door service in Utah Valley and charge just $25 per ride or errand up to one hour within 5 miles. We can pick up and drop off prescriptions or groceries as needed.

Aspen Senior Care wants to help seniors stay at home as long as they are comfortable and safe.  We understand there’s no place like home and work hard to help our clients remain where they are happiest.

Here at Aspen Senior Care we value each and every one of our clients and their families!  Each client is unique and we design our services to match their needs.   If you are in need of assistance or have any questions about our services please give us a call at 801-224-5910 or visit our website at aspenseniorcare.com.  

 

 

Keeping Your Mind Sharp at Any Age

Everyone knows that the human body needs good nutrition and exercise to keep it strong and healthy.  We can actually build muscles and tone our bodies with diet and exercise, but did you know that the human brain can be strengthened and toned too?

The less we use our muscles, the more they deteriorate. The human brain works much the same way – it needs to be constantly challenged, conditioned and fed in order to thrive. Otherwise it too falls into a state of atrophy.brain-running

What many don’t realize is that it’s never too late to build up your brain’s ability to think!  Keeping your mind active by socializing, reading, engaging in problem-solving puzzles and word games, arts and crafts, and feeding your brain healthy food can actually increase the cognitive reserves in your brain no matter what age you are.

A recent article at Truth About Cancer lists seven ways to keep our minds sharp and clear: 

  • Continue to Learn and Grow Your Mind
    Experts say keeping mentally active, whether through engaging in a new hobby, continuing education, or learning a new skill, helps keep brain cells communicating well with each other.
  • Use All Your Senses
    The more senses you use in learning something new, the more involved your brain will be in retaining it in your long-term memory.
  • Don’t Get Down on Yourself
    Positive thinking really does work! Just because we older doesn’t mean our memory is going to fail. Think positively, work hard, and believe in yourself. You’ll achieve so much more that way!
  • Simplify Your Life
    Spend your mental energy on tasks that require critical thinking − not on trying to find your keys for the umpteenth time.  Removing clutter and unimportant distractions from daily life will help maintain brain function.
  • Repeat What You Want to Remember
    If you find yourself forgetting things all the time, repeat the things you don’t want to slip your mind until they’re stuck in your head.
  • Space Out Your Repetitions
    For more difficult concepts to remember, try spacing out your repetitions. For example, start at once an hour, then every few hours, then every day, and so on. Practicing this technique helps improve memory as it relates to retaining lots of new information.
  • Ever Heard of a Mnemonic?
    Piano players learned at an early age how to remember the musical notes E, G, B, D, and F by memorizing “Every Good Boy Does Fine.”  Mnemonic devices can help us remember important things like people’s names or lists. Another example of a mnemonic device is an acronym, in which each of the letters spelling out a particular word stand for another word or phrase that starts with that letter.

It’s never too late to start exercising your brain. Find something that interests you or something you’ve always wanted to try but never have. By keeping positive and learning new things you can build brain power and have fun doing it!cognitive-reserves-never-too-old-or-too-late

Aspen Senior Care is dedicated to improving the lives of seniors in our community! We do this by providing quality in-home care and day center programs, and helping seniors and their families connect with support groups, health services and other resources in the community.  If you are in need of assistance or have any questions, please give us a call at 801-224-5910 or visit our website at aspenseniorcare.com. We also have services in Salt Lake County.

Aspen Senior Care’s Award-Winning Services for Seniors

If you are looking for the best in-home care possible, Aspen Senior Care’s award-winning services for seniors is it. Here at Aspen Senior Care we understand the difficulty that families face when searching for in-home care. There are many home care agencies out there, but none of them are like Aspen Senior Care.2016-BOHC-Provider-of-Choice (High Res)

We have contracted with a company called Home Care Pulse® to help take the guesswork out of finding care. Being a third-party company, Home Care Pulse can collect unbiased, honest feedback without outside influence. They do so by conducting phone interviews with a number of our clients or their responsible party each month.

Clients have an opportunity to rate our services on a scale of 1 – 10 in areas such as:

  • Timeliness of caregivers.
  • Knowledge of caregivers.
  • Compassion of caregivers
  • Communication with office staff.
  • Services provided as promised.
  • Overall quality of care.

Clients are also asked where we are doing well and where we need to improve.  If they wish they can remain anonymous when answering these questions.

Once Home Care Pulse completes these phone interviews they send us a report of their findings and also show us how we compare with other companies in the home care industry. Each year they award the top companies with the Best of Home Care Certified – Trusted Provider Award. Aspen Senior Care has won this award for the past 7 years in a row.

Aspen Senior Care’s goal is to provide the best home care possible and we want our clients to feel assured that we are constantly taking steps to improve our service.

Certified – Trusted Providers are committed to:

  • Actively gathering important feedback from their clients each month.
  • Using client’s feedback to help them provide excellent care.
  • Giving you or your loved one the best in-home care possible.

Best of Utah Vally.2016Aspen Senior Care has also been voted Best in Utah Valley by the Daily Herald Reader’s Choice Awards for the past 4 years.  We are committed to providing good, quality care.

Our caregivers are warm, caring and skilled individuals who have been carefully screened and well trained. We don’t hire anyone we wouldn’t trust to care for our own family members.

Our caregivers love working here!

Our caregivers love working here!

Call us at 801-224-5910 to see if Aspen Senior Care is a fit for you or your loved one!

Aspen Senior Care is Moving!

After eleven years in the Dodge building Aspen Senior Care is moving! This little brick building has been Aspen’s home since the summer of 2004. We started with just a handful of caregivers, a few clients and a passionate commitment to help seniors.

Our little brick home for almost 12 years.

Aspen Senior Care has been in the Dodge Building for almost 12 years.

Since that time we’ve grown with over 90 caregivers and 100 clients in Utah and Salt Lake Counties.  We’ve developed a strong reputation of providing quality, compassionate service to seniors and their families.

We are excited to press forward with our tradition of service as we move to a new home. We’ll be just down the road a little ways at 1385 South 740 East in Orem, east of State Street.

The past month has been very busy and we appreciate everyone patience and help. Our amazing scheduling team and wonderful caregivers have continued providing great service without missing a beat. We appreciate everyone who has stepped up to keep things running smoothly through this transition. They are great!

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Cindy has been collecting boxes and packing for a couple of weeks. We have a lot of stuff!

 

Aspen Senior Care is moving but in the midst of boxes and bare walls, Tammy'is helping clients.

Aspen Senior Care is moving but in the midst of boxes and bare walls, scheduling goes on!

We hope to be completely moved in by June 1st. If you happen to be in the neighborhood, stop by and say hi. We’d love to see you!

Aspen Senior Care is dedicated to improving the lives of seniors in our community! We do this by providing quality in-home care and day center programs, and helping seniors and their families connect with support groups, health services and other resources in the community.  If you are in need of assistance or have any questions, please give us a call at 801-224-5910 or visit our website at aspenseniorcare.com. We also have services in Salt Lake County.

Aspen Senior Care has been voted Best of Utah Valley again!

The Best in Utah Valley competition is held each spring by the Daily Herald. Readers choose and vote on their favorite local businesses, services and products in Utah County.  The Daily Herald counts the votes, chooses the top three in each category and the rest is history!

Aspen Senior Care cares! This is more that a job, these dear seniors become family.

Aspen Senior Care cares! This is more that a job, these dear seniors become family.

Aspen Senior Care was chosen along with 2 other agencies as The Best of Utah Valley in the Home Health Care category. Although we are a personal care agency, we work closely with the best home health & hospice agencies in Utah.

Our mission statement is very simple:

“Our mission is to help seniors in Utah live comfortably and independently in their own homes for as long as possible.”

We accomplish this by:

“…providing Utah’s finest and most reliable in-home companion care. Our care and business practices are based on strong family values and the highest of ethical standards. We perform all senior care services with professionalism and dignity and treat all seniors as family.”

Aspen Senior Care has been serving seniors in Utah Valley for over 11 years. We started caring for seniors in the Salt Lake Valley about 6 years ago. We love caring for seniors and working with their families to help their loved ones stay comfortably at home as long as possible.

Seniors bless our lives in so many ways. We are fortunate to be able to associate with these wonderful people..

Seniors bless our lives in so many ways. We are fortunate to be able to associate with our wonderful seniors.

We help with:

  • personal hygiene
  • meal preparation
  • menu planning
  • grocery shopping & errands
  • night care
  • medication reminders
  • light house keeping
  • dementia care
  • hospice care
  • companionship
  • transportation

Aspen Senior Care is a locally owned company with roots deep in Utah. This is our home. We work closely with families and clients to create a care plan specially designed to meet individual needs.

Our caregivers love working here!

Our caregivers love working here!

We also have clients in assisted livings and rehabs. Families are comforted knowing loved ones are getting the care and attention they need. Call us at 801-224-5910 and see if we can be of help.

 

Recognizing Stroke Signs

At a recent Aspen Senior Care in-service caregivers learned the importance of recognizing stroke signs early.  According to the Centers for Disease Control, stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the United States. Learning to recognizing stroke signs and and the symptoms of tertiary ischemic attack (also known as mini stroke or TIA’s) can help increase the chances of survival and limit side-effects.

Recognizing stoke signs early can save lives.

Symptoms of stroke can differ in men and women.

Aspen trains new caregivers to recognize stroke symptoms and understand the procedure in place to handle this situation. We hold a yearly in-service training on stroke and it’s symptoms because it is so important to be clear on what to do if symptoms are noticed. Caregivers are the eyes and ears of our clients and their families. They see first hand subtle changes in health or personality that family members may not be aware of.

When a client is experiencing stroke symptoms it is crucial to get medical attention as quickly as possible. If treatment can begin within 3 hours of symptoms appearing, there is a greater likelihood of recovery from the effects of a stroke.

Men and women often experience stroke symptoms differently, according to an article at Clinical Advisor.  Many seniors don’t realize they may be having a stroke until it is too late. This is where we as caregivers can help clients and family caregivers by observing and educating them about these symptoms.

If you aren’t sure, ask these questions:

  • FACE – Has the face fallen on one side? Can they smile?
  • ARMS – Can they raise both arms and keep them there?
  • SPEECH – Is their speech slurred?
  • TIME to call 911 if you see any one of these symptoms.
Recognizing stroke signs

Remember to act FAST when you see sings of stroke.

At Aspen Senior Care we provide quality training for our caregivers which leads to quality in-home care for our clients. Visit our Facebook page to see some of the exciting things we are doing and learning.

There are many senior care agencies in Utah, but none like Aspen Senior Care.  We’re different!  Gary Staples founded Aspen Senior Care over 11 years ago because of his genuine love,  enthusiasm and admiration for seniors and his desire to provide a much needed to service to seniors who want to stay at home in their final years.

Gary chose a team of office staff and caregivers who share his vision of helping seniors in their homes. In an industry with high employee turnover, Gary has creaWP_20160310_15_04_52_Proted a company where no one wants to leave! Most of the office staff have been with Aspen over 8 years, and a many of the caregivers have been with Aspen 5+ years, with a few dating back to it’s very beginning.

Here’s what some of our clients have to say about their experience with Aspen:

“Dear Aspen Senior Care: Thank you so much for the loving care you gave to our mother, LaRae, since she was diagnosed with a terminal brain tumor last August. It is impossible to list the many people and services that were provided, but please know how much each and every one of you was loved and appreciated by LaRae and our family… we give special thanks to Juli who became not just a caregiver, but a dear, dear friend to our mother. She truly went the extra mile in every way.” ~ u201CPretty in Pinku201D Tea Party 029

“I appreciate how we have had really good caregivers, it has been amazing that the substitute caregivers have even been great. Aspen Senior Care has worked with us to find unique and caring caregivers that fit our family’s needs. Aspen…has been an enriching experience for us.”  ~ Bonnie  C.

“What impressed me the most about the caregivers from Aspen Senior Care is that they have developed a strong relationship with my mother and that demonstrates that they truly care about her.” ~ Helen S.Aspen 5 years

Aspen’s mission statement is to help seniors stay in their homes for as long as possible and treat each client as family. We have a big Aspen family and there’s always room for more!

If we can help you or a loved one with caring companionship, house-keeping, medication reminders, personal care, dementia care, night care or errands, give us a call at 801-224-5910. We’d be happy to visit with you.

 

Ask Questions When Interviewing Senior Care Agencies

In-home care agencies allow seniors to stay in their homes longer and enjoy more freedom and independence, so it’s important to ask questions when hiring a senior care agency.

There are so many agencies now and the quality of care varies greatly. Just because a caregiver is employed by an agency doesn’t necessarily mean they have the training and experience to care for an elderly person.

Allowing and trusting a stranger into a private home can be risky and challenging so it’s really important for families to research agencies carefully when considering in-home care.

Ask questions such as these when interviewing senior care agencies:

  1. How long has this agency been in business? 
    • Use a company that is well known. It doesn’t need to be large or a franchise. Make sure to ask for references.
  2. How does the company recruit caregivers? 
    • Some hire anyone who walks through the door.
    • Do they run federal or state background checks as well as reference checks?
  3. What skills and certifications are required and how does the company assess each caregiver’s skills?
    • Do they know the caregiver’s strengths, weaknesses and interests? This is important when matching caregivers with clients.
  4. Are employees insured and bonded through the agency? 
    • Are they covered by Workers Compensation insurance and does the company pay their payroll taxes.
  5. Does the agency send the same person rather than a new caregiver each visit?
    • It is a good idea to have 2 or 3 caregivers on a team in case one becomes ill or leaves.
  6. If a caregiver isn’t a good fit, will the agency provide someone else quickly?
  7. Does the agency provide a quality of care evaluation regularly and who does this?

At Aspen Senior Care, we have hired a third party, Home Care Pulse, to conduct monthly interviews with our clients, to find out how we are doing and where we can improve. We are serious about providing the best care possible.Family Caregivers need to know the Difference between 24-Hr Hourly Care and 24-Hr Live-in Care

Aspen Senior Care…

  1. is well established in our community with over 11 years of service in Utah County.
  2. carefully screens and runs background checks on potential caregivers. We conduct lengthy interviews and check all references of potential caregivers.
  3. requires caregivers to be either CNAs or Certified Companion Aides (CCAs). Our caregivers are also trained in dementia and hospice care.
  4. is bonded and insured, provides Workers Compensation insurance and pays all payroll taxes.
  5. strives to be consistent with a team of caregivers so that clients will have familiarity with their caregivers.
  6. listens to client concerns and always tries to find the best caregiver fit.
  7. does on-site evaluations of caregivers and alternate with a home visit and a phone call to our clients every other month. These visits and calls are done by our field supervisors.

Call us at 801-224-5910 and see if we can answer these questions to your satisfaction. We are passionate about providing quality care to seniors. We consider our clients and caregivers to be part of our Aspen family and we’d love to have you be a part of it!

Aspen's Scheduling Team

Aspen’s Scheduling Team

 

“Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it”
— Charles Swindoll

Did you know that our communication with others, especially those we care for, can impact how we feel and think?  While the words we speak can have a negative or a positive affect on those around us, they also affect us.

We are always creating “realities” around us when we communicate with others and others do the same with us.

Holly Whiteside at AgingCare.com gives the following example:

‘Imagine yourself visiting your loved one in the hospital. You are walking down the hallway when you overhear two people talking. One of them points at a nurse coming down the hall and tells her friend, “That one has a lousy attitude.”

Later, you meet that nurse in your loved one’s room. Do you feel good about her caring for your loved one?’

Subconsciously, you probably have already formed an opinion of her and will now notice how she does everything with a poor attitude.

We are constantly being “infected” by others’ words and actions, but do we notice how our own thoughts and words affect how we are feeling?  Words describe feelings but they can also CREATE feelings in ourselves and in others, which is why we should choose our words carefully.

Many types of communication in ordinary life are common, such as “venting” or “sharing.”   However,  caregiving is not ordinary life! As a caregiver, your energy and attitude need to be safeguarded at all costs.

Many of us know people who drain the emotional energy from us. It’s hard to be around people like that. But if we are saying negative things to ourselves about our situation it can be just as draining.

Saying to yourself that “Caregiving is hard” has a slightly negative tone about it, but if you change the phrase by saying  “Caregiving is a challenge” it makes the tone a little more hopeful.

Of course, we all need to vent at times, but Holly Whiteside recommends setting a limit to this. It’s helpful to talk about difficulties, but then move on to more constructive communication.

If we are always creating our realities, with practice we should be able to create something positive!

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Here at Aspen Senior Care we value each and every one of our clients and their families!  Each client is unique and we design our services to match their needs.   If you are in need of assistance or have any questions about our services please give us a call at 801-224-5910 or visit our website at aspenseniorcare.com.