Are you making decisions based on fact or fiction?
Find out as we dispel a few myths about senior living.
When you’re trying to decide on the best plan for your future, it’s natural if lingering concerns make you hesitate. What if those concerns are rooted in long-time myths about senior living and misunderstandings? How do you sort fact from fiction? If you’re thinking about your future, you need the facts, especially now when a worldwide pandemic has all of us feeling particularly uneasy.
MYTH: I’m safer where I live now.
FACT: You’re likely safer living in a well-managed senior community.
If you live in a condo or standalone home, you likely have to venture out in public quite a bit, which exposes you to a lot of people with the virus. Senior living communities are focused every day on keeping people safe, so your risk of exposure is much lower. Plus, it’s easier to stay home. Right now, most communities are delivering groceries, meals, medications and other essentials to your door. If you do get sick, many senior living communities offer in-home care and support if you need it.
MYTH: I’ll be even more bored than I already am.
FACT: Senior living communities are working hard to keep people entertained and engaged.
Certainly, life has a different tempo now. For example, just a few months ago, Beatitudes Campus was buzzing with activity as residents gathered for book club meetings, happy hours, fitness classes, musical performances, worship services, cards, games and more. But, today, we’re all finding new ways to connect and enjoy life.
Staff at senior living communities are hosting socially distanced events and online book club meetings, fitness classes, educational programs and other special activities. With virtual tutorials, residents are learning new skills at home, such as painting and jewelry making. Others are enjoying the outdoors on cooler evenings by walking, tending to their flowers and talking with friends on the patio — all socially distanced, of course.
MYTH: I already have everything I need.
FACT: At a senior living community, you’ll have access to everything you may need and more.
At a senior living community, you have the resources of the entire community available to you, from helpful staff and home delivery of the essentials to onsite healthcare. At Beatitudes Campus, we’re also providing frequent COVID-19 screenings and testing so you don’t have to travel to your doctor’s office or wait for hours in line at a testing site. And, when the pandemic is over, you’ll be able to enjoy an even more vibrant community filled with lots of in-person entertainment, and educational, fitness and social opportunities — all things that don’t come with a typical standalone house.
MYTH: This is not the time to make a move.
FACT: Now is a great time to plan your next move.
If you’re feeling uneasy about moving right now, that’s completely understandable. As you know, it takes time to make decisions, so why not use this time to explore your options? Learn about the services and amenities provided by senior living communities. Talk to residents. Ask about costs.
For starters, you can check out videos and floor plans on our website for a quick armchair tour of Beatitudes Campus. For an in-depth look, we’re offering video appointments with a residency counselor who can show you more and answer your questions.
See More: Virtual Tours
If you are ready to move, now is a good time. The real estate market is strong in Phoenix with high home values. At Beatitudes Campus, you’ll find residential options in a variety of sizes and styles. And, depending on your timeframe, we have an exciting, new option coming in the future. We would love to tell you all about it.
For more facts about senior living communities, call us today at 602.883.1358 or fill out a contact form below.
At Beatitudes Campus, we’re leading the way in memory care and support. But, it hasn’t always been that way. Like so many other places, we took a traditional medical approach focused on organizational goals rather than each individual’s routines and preferences.
That all changed in 1997 when a team of caregivers at Beatitudes Campus began a multi-year journey of researching and developing Comfort Matters®, an innovative, person-centered way of supporting those who have trouble thinking.
“Advocacy and social justice are fundamental principles of Beatitudes Campus because of our roots in the United Church of Christ. We started with those commitments and beliefs,” explained Tena Alonzo, Director of Education and Research and Director of Comfort Matters at Beatitudes during an interview with ACCESS Health International, a healthcare think tank and advisory group.
In working with health experts around the country, what they learned changed everything about how to support people with dementia.
“We discovered that we didn’t know much about taking care of people with dementia. It took time to develop the culture, policies, and procedures to become as radically person-centered as we are today. It was a labor of love for everyone.”
Taking A Holistic Approach That Respects Autonomy
Tena and her team, which included Karen Mitchell, Registered Nurse and Comfort Matters Educator, realized that engagement, autonomy, and choice bore huge benefits for individuals with dementia—as they do for all people.
“If we can help people sleep when they are tired, they can wake refreshed and more often be their best selves. If people can eat what they want when they want—day or night, they tend to be healthier, happier, and live longer. If they’re able to enjoy their favorite and familiar activities, they feel content and calm,” said Alonzo.
The team found that caregiving in such a holistic way dramatically reduces the number of medications, which in turn reduces side effects and helps people feel better overall. With Comfort Matters, individuals experience lower rates of incontinence, less sundowning, and decreased hospitalizations. The Beatitudes Campus staff is happier, too. Less employee turnover means more continuity of care and more familiar faces for residents—a win-win for everyone.
Truly Knowing Each Person
The concept of serving people in such a profound way that respects their personal attachments to routines and preferences and honors the individual and their life experience became the mission. To make it happen, the team upended and recreated the existing care model that had been ingrained in society for 100 years. They pressed forward, educating and collaborating with Beatitudes Campus management and staff, doctors, regulatory agencies, and families.
Today, the entire Beatitudes Campus staff is empowered to engage and provide comfort to residents. From housekeepers and maintenance crews to the nurses and everyday caregivers, every single person is encouraged to be innovators and share ideas so we can all meet residents where they are.
With families as our partners, we can be better caregivers and help guide and educate families through this time, according to Alonzo. Because we see dementia in a different way, everyone—families, staff, and other residents on campus—feel more empowered and less afraid.
Translating What We Learned Into A Dementia-Friendly Place To Live
Beatitudes Campus serves people with all levels of physical and cognitive ability. Some live in their own apartment or patio homes while others live in suites designed for skilled nursing care, memory support, or assisted living. Because we care and respect each other, you’ll find residents of all abilities laughing and enjoying time together—eating lunch, putting on the miniature green, tapping their toes to a musical performance, and more.
Hard work, unyielding devotion, and the willingness to innovate—that’s how Beatitudes Campus transformed into a dementia-friendly community, and why we’re different.
“Most residents have 65 or more years of life behind them. We honor that person because of their life experience,” said Alonzo. “We must have a culture that allows people to be themselves. That is the heart of person-directed living.”
Here, you can read more about Tena Alonzo and her team’s innovative approach to helping people live with dementia. To learn more about Beatitudes Campus’ extraordinary memory support options, call us today at (602) 833-1358 or submit a contact form on our website.
On October 10, World Mental Health Day reminded us all to take a deep breath and take stock in caring for our mental and emotional well-being. Beatitudes Campus joins the international community in promoting ways for you to live your best life—fulfilling, connected, and active—while encouraging you to reach out for help and support whenever you need it.
There are simple things you can do to keep your mental health on track, starting with these helpful suggestions from Mayo Clinic and the Mental Health Foundation in the United Kingdom.
Tips for caring for your mental health
- Get plenty of sleep
- Talk with others
- Laugh more
- Find a sense of purpose
- Take up a hobby
- Volunteer to help others
- Get physically active
- Manage your stress
- Eat a healthy diet
- Ask for professional help if you need it
Keep an open mind
Most people will experience a mental health challenge in their lifetime, according to Mayo Clinic. Not all symptoms, even the scary ones, are cause for alarm. Something as simple as a vitamin deficiency or urinary tract infection can cause mood swings and dementia-like symptoms. Talk to your doctor. Information and proper treatment can make a huge difference in your mental, emotional, and physical health.
Remember, as we get older, we experience life stressors common to all ages as well as additional stressors such as chronic pain, loneliness, and bereavement, according to the World Health Organization. So, as we age, it’s important to keep caring for ourselves holistically.
Where you live matters
Another smart suggestion is to look at where you live. How easy is it for you to get out and socialize, meet new people, volunteer, be active and eat healthy? Being able to easily do all of those things is perhaps one of the best aspects of living in a senior living community such as Beatitudes Campus.
Here, you can meet others who share your interests, take educational classes, play cards and games, volunteer your time and talents, tutor students, learn to paint and eat healthy in any of our restaurants. That’s just the beginning!
Knowing our staff takes care of everything, from housekeeping to maintenance to yard work, might relieve some of your stress and help you sleep better at night. Making friends and building real connections means you’ll enjoy a sense of belonging and always have a shoulder to lean on when you need it. Best of all, if you ever do need help with your mental health, Beatitudes Campus offers support groups, counseling, assisted living with memory support, and more.
To learn more about how Beatitudes Campus can enhance your mental, emotional, and physical well-being, call us at (602) 910-2795 or get in touch by submitting a contact form on our website.
When you’re considering a move to a new place, it can be helpful to know what the people who live there think and feel about their home and community, the neighbors and staff, as well as the atmosphere and amenities. We asked four residents to tell us about what Beatitudes Campus means to them. We were delighted to hear their answers.
When Marc Adelman lived across the street from Beatitudes Campus years ago, he didn’t know the community specialized in senior living. Today, he not only lives on campus, he’s involved with dozens of programs, committees, and activities.
Marc spearheaded a program to install a special audio system in the campus’ Everett Luther Life Center to help people hear the presentations and music better. As an ad hoc technology expert, he helps residents with their TVs, phones, and other devices.
“I moved here in 2015, and I’ve loved every minute of it,” said Marc, who also teaches mahjong and serves as a community ambassador. “I was very active before moving here. Beatitudes gives me the opportunity to stay active and involved.”
In June, Beatitudes Campus debuts its new Gaming Connection, a special calendar that tracks all of the game and puzzle meetups happening across campus–bridge, poker, dominoes, mahjong, board games, and more. It makes it easy for everyone to find a game and join in whenever they want. It’s a great way to meet new friends. Marc helped create the computerized tracking system for this new calendar.
“To me, Beatitudes Campus means safety, friendliness and connection with people,” he said. “Most of us wear name tags. On it, we get to add a word that best describes ourselves. I chose the word ‘involved.’”
As an electrical design consultant, Bill Chase stays busy, dividing his time between his clients and life at Beatitudes Campus. Bill and his late wife lived just four miles from the community before moving to the community in 2016. Beatitudes provided the stability, ease, and optional in-home caregiving the couple needed.
“When we visited Beatitudes, the community was so lively and engaged. People had places to go, things to do. We liked that,” said Bill. “Plus, people here seemed more friendly.”
Today, Bill spends his free time participating in social groups and playing guitar on-campus several days a week. “There are a lot of choices. You can pick and choose what you want to do,” said Bill. “It’s like being back in college.”
In addition to an active social life, Bill has found friendship and support at Beatitudes Campus.
“It feels like a small town. People look out for each other,” said Bill. “Living at Beatitudes Campus makes me want to be a better person, just like my wife did.”
Carol and Wally Flinn
Married for 64 years, Carol and Wally Flinn moved to Beatitudes Campus in 2016, after deciding that keeping up a four-bedroom house was just too much work.
“We started educating ourselves on what was available. We looked at three other communities over two years,” said Carol. “We chose Beatitudes because we like the staff, the people, and the food. We feel safe here, especially at night.”
The Flinns enjoy a variety of activities on campus. Wally, who’s outgoing and gregarious, likes the fitness center, walking on campus, and playing darts and bocce ball. Carol is loyal to spending time with friends, playing bridge, using the campus library, and being a part of the Welcome Committee.
“For us, Beatitudes Campus means being more involved, more active, taking lifelong learning classes, belonging to groups, and meeting new people,” said Carol.
When MaryLou Renfrow began needing help at home after a fall, she and her family didn’t choose a senior living community lightly. Before MaryLou moved to Beatitudes Campus, her son-in-law thoroughly vetted the community before giving his blessing.
“He checked out everything to make sure it was a good place,” said MaryLou, who lives in a ground floor apartment with a beautiful patio decorated just the way she likes it. “I just love it here. Everyone smiles, waves, and says hello. We’re like a big family.”
MaryLou takes advantage of Beatitudes Campus “Be at Home” services program to make everyday living a little easier. The program provides in-home care and personal support, such as help getting ready in the morning, transportation to the doctor, grocery shopping, medication reminders, and more.
“They even take great care of my cat, LouLou,” she said. “For me, Beatitudes Campus means feeling content and relaxed. It feels like my home. There are a lot of wonderful things that come with it.”
Are you or a loved one considering the transition to a retirement community? Schedule a tour of Beatitudes Campus by calling us at (602) 536-4732 or submitting a contact form!