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Sarasota Assisted Living’s Spice of Life: 3 Ways to Explore International Cuisine in Florida

Here at Westminster Manor, we know our residents have adventurous palates. Many of us have traveled the world and experienced exotic cuisines firsthand. Now, as active seniors living in beautiful Bradenton, Florida, we continue seeking multicultural food experiences right here in our backyard.

Sarasota and the surrounding Gulf Coast region host vibrant international communities, flavors, and traditions. With balmy weather ideal for being out and about year-round, every day presents new culinary adventures. As a continuing care retirement community (CCRC) emphasizing dynamic senior living, we encourage our residents to explore local ethnic cuisine through food festivals, cooking clubs, restaurants outings, and more.

Join us on a moveable feast as we spice up life in Sarasota assisted living with international food!

  1. Identifying Popular Cuisine in Florida

Having attracted immigrants from the Caribbean, South America and beyond, Florida serves up intoxicating multinational cuisine. Assisted living residents can try mouthwatering specialties without even leaving the Sunshine State.

Cuban food leads the palate parade with tangy, garlicky, slow-roasted meats like lechón asado (roast pork) and ropa vieja (shredded flank steak). Add black beans, rice, fried plantains and a mojito to complete an authentic Nuevo Cubano meal. Cuban Bread, a local favorite, provides the perfect vehicle for Cuba’s iconic sandwiches.

The nearby fishing waters yield an abundance of fresh seafood tailor-made for ceviche, a zesty Latin American specialty mixing raw fish or shellfish with citrus and chilies. Some Sarasota restaurants put a Floribbean spin on ceviche by incorporating mango, pineapple or coconut milk.

Attending Food Festivals Year-Round

Florida’s endless food festivals let assisted living residents sample a wide spectrum of cultural cuisine in one place. These lively events bring international chefs, restaurants, markets and musicians together to showcase national foods and associated arts.

At the ever-popular Greek Glendi festival, zigzag through the food booths collecting heaping plates of gyro meat, spanakopita, dolmas, Greek salad and baklava. Then work off the calories dancing to live music!

For more exotic choices like curried goat, oxtail stew or Jamaican jerk chicken, visit the annual Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival. Inhale the aromas of spices and sizzle of barbeque grills while reggae bands play.

If you’re seeking something unique, the annual Sarasota Medieval Fair whisks you back to olde England with giant turkey legs, meat pies, fish ‘n chips, and mead. Costumed musicians, jesters and knights entertain faire-goers.

Most food festivals run during peak visitor season between January and April, but some operate year-round. So assisted living gourmands need never endure a dull palate!

Meeting Friends to Swap Recipes

Fellow foodies make the best friends. At Westminster Manor, new friendships often form around shared cooking interests and recipes from native cultures. You might even find potlucks, bake sales, recipe exchanges and informal cookouts ideal for swapping kitchen stories.

For home cooks seeking new culinary challenges, nothing beats learning recipes firsthand from native-born assisting living friends. Those longing for a taste of Italy can get tips on perfecting marinara sauce, handmade pastas and other staples from our Italian American residents.

Likewise our Cuban friends gladly share treasured family recipes for picadillo, ropa vieja, maduros and more. Cooking these dishes together strengthens bonds while expanding your international repertoire.

You might even consider bringing a friend to enjoy local cooking demonstrations and classes. Chefs from Sarasota’s eclectic restaurant scene may visit the area to showcase cooking techniques and signature dishes from their homeland. Seeing authentic preparation methods — especially for unfamiliar ingredients — helps de-mystify ethnic cuisine.

As active seniors in assisted living, we relish all avenues leading to more flavorful food and meaningful connections.

Trying Local Restaurants and Group Outings

For carefree culinary adventures, nothing beats dining out in good company. Sarasota County has over 800 eateries ranging from everyday cafés to upscale establishments specializing in global gastronomy. Many restaurants lie within easy reach of Westminster Manor.

Assisted living group excursions to nearby ethnic restaurants let us experience the joy of breaking bread together. Sharing a meal often leads to sharing stories and laughter, strengthening connections new and old.

Westminster residents frequently enjoy outings to St. Armands Circle, a jewel of Sarasota dining. At this Mediterranean-style shopping district, walking along the palm-dotted promenades under swaying lanterns makes for great exercise and people watching, too!

For more adventure, don’t miss taking trips to historical Ybor City, Tampa’s Latin Quarter. Founded by Cuban and Spanish immigrants in the 1880s, Ybor City feels like walking into Old Havana.  Between the authentic cuisine, hand-rolled cigars and eclectic architecture, residents find endless fascination.

As Florida’s reputation as a retirement mecca grows yearly, Westminster Manor attracts active seniors from across the U.S. and abroad. This makes for exciting culinary diversity right onsite. New residents often introduce hometown recipes and Initiate ethnic potlucks, expanding all our palates.

Every day, Sarasota’s multicultural assisted living community spices life with zest, joy and meaning. ¡Buen provecho!

At Westminster Manor, exploring Florida’s rich international cuisine never gets dull. From lively local festivals to cooking with foodie friends, our campus stays abuzz with tempting aromas and flavors from around the globe. Culinary day trips as a group let us break bread together while supporting Sarasota’s diverse restaurant scene.

As a continuing care retirement community, Westminster Manor emphasizes whole-person wellness through life’s transitions. Our worship services, fitness classes, social hours and community service activities further connect residents from all backgrounds.

Want to spice up senior living? Contact Westminster Manor in Bradenton to learn more or schedule a tour. Our welcoming staff looks forward to sharing vibrant flavors and fellowship with you!

Staying Sharp: Brain Health Activities for Seniors

As we age, it becomes increasingly important to take proactive steps to maintain and enhance our cognitive abilities. The old adage of “use it or lose it” really does apply when it comes to our brains. The good news is that engaging in intellectually stimulating activities can help boost memory, concentration, problem-solving skills and more. At our Westminster Manor senior living community, we make brain health a priority and offer a range of programs and resources to keep our residents’ minds active and alert. 

In this blog post, we’ll explore some of the many ways seniors can stay sharp by incorporating brain-stimulating activities into their daily routines.

The Benefits of Brain Training 

Research has shown cognitive and memory training can benefit older adults in a variety of ways. Some key advantages include:

– Boosting focus, concentration and attention span

– Strengthening short-term memory and recall  

– Improving processing speed and coordination

– Enhancing problem-solving abilities and mental flexibility

– Delaying cognitive decline associated with aging and dementia

– Improving overall mental acuity and perception 

– Increasing self-confidence and sense of control over one’s mind

Along with bolstering cognitive skills, engaging activities also provide an opportunity for meaningful social engagement and interaction. The social element helps make training fun rather than isolating or boring.

Activities to Build Your Thinking Skills

The good news is that there are endless engaging ways we can “exercise” our brain on a daily basis. Here are some suggested activities to incorporate:

Games

– Crossword puzzles

– Sudoku and other number games

– Word searches

– Jigsaw puzzles 

– Strategy games like chess, checkers, bridge, or mahjong

– Trivia games on a range of topics

– Playing card games that involve counting or sequencing

– Video games and online brain training games

These types of games flex mental muscles in different ways – from memory recall to visual-spatial reasoning. Try mixing it up to target varied skills.

Learning

– Take a class at a local college or community center 

– Join or start a book club focused on challenging literature

– Learn a new language 

– Study an unfamiliar subject that always interested you

– Attend lectures on topics outside your expertise

– Learn to play a musical instrument

– Enroll in an online course

Lifelong learning exposes our brains to new ideas and information which strengthens cognitive function. Share what you’re learning with others to reinforce lessons.

Creative and Analytical Activities

– Write stories, poems or memoirs

– Paint, draw, sculpt or engage in other visual arts 

– Craft projects like quilting, knitting, sewing, scrapbooking

– Work on jigsaw or 3D puzzles

– Play “brain training” computer games

– Do math puzzles like Sudoku and numbered crosswords

– Memorize poems or speeches

– Learn a choreographed dance or complex exercise routine

– Follow a new recipe with several steps

Activities like these engage multiple regions of the brain as you utilize language, creativity, visualization, sequencing and logic skills.

Everyday Habits

– Have engaging conversations with others.

– Listen to informative podcasts and lectures.

– Read books, magazines and newspapers daily.

– Write lists and notes by hand instead of digitally.

– Play brain games like Scrabble or do crosswords with a friend.  

– Follow current events and discuss them.

– Do activities and hobbies that involve multiple senses.

– Walk or exercise regularly to increase blood flow.

– Get enough sleep to allow full brain restoration.

– Eat a balanced, nutritious diet with brain-healthy foods.

Weave these types of activities into your routine to keep your brain challenged daily.

Memory-Boosting Activities

– Repeating names and information out loud 

– Methodically retracing your steps to remember locations of objects

– Associating people’s names with characteristics to aid recall  

– Creating acronyms and mnemonic devices 

– Recalling main themes after finishing a book or movie

– Doing mental arithmetic without digital assistance

Targeted memory-strengthening exercises will improve recall and help fight normal age-related memory loss. 

Cognitive Training Programs at Westminster Manor

At Westminster Manor, we incorporate a variety of engaging evidence-based cognitive training activities into our lifestyle calendar. Some examples include:

Brain Aerobics – Facilitated by a neuropsychologist, these interactive sessions target skills like memory, language and attention through exercises and group discussions.

Current Events Group – Residents meet weekly to discuss the latest news events and debate implications, exercising critical thinking and reasoning abilities.

Creative Writing – Our writing coach leads sessions to craft poetry, memoirs and fiction pieces, flexing literary skills.

Guest Lecture Series – Local professors and experts share knowledge on topics like astronomy, history and art.

Spanish Lessons – Weekly lessons teach conversational Spanish and immerse residents in language acquisition. 

Music Appreciation – Our music therapist explores different musical genres and instruments. Residents recall melodies and identify instruments by sound.  

Brain Health Resources at Westminster Manor

Protecting your cognitive abilities as you age is vitally important to maintaining independence and quality of life. We encourage people of all ages to take steps to boost brain health. The wide variety of engaging activities available means you can choose options aligned with your unique interests and abilities. 

At Westminster Manor, it is our privilege to support residents’ mental vitality and provide resources to stay cognitively active. Please reach out to learn more about our brain health programs tailored to older adults. We look forward to welcoming you into our community of active, empowered seniors pursuing lifelong learning and growth.

‘God put us here for a reason’: Serving the residents during Hurricane Idalia is part of our Mission

When a hurricane or tropical storm threatens Florida, like Hurricane Idalia this week, team members at Westminster Communities of Florida have a top priority: Ensuring the safety and well-being of the residents we serve. Our Mission is to serve from the heart and inspire older adults to enjoy happy, healthy and purposeful lives.

What impact has Hurricane Idalia had? Some of our dedicated team members are living out our Mission, today, by evacuating with residents or sheltering at their communities through the storm. Regardless of their normal jobs, their principal responsibility right now is to provide for the residents’ needs.

Today we caught up with five of these team members to learn about their experiences, why they chose to stay at their community or evacuate with residents, and what is inspiring them to stay hard at work during a storm.

Jackie Walker Ellison, Cook, Westminster Shores, temporarily at Westminster Winter Park

In St. Petersburg, Westminster Shores was forced to relocate residents out of the path of the storm. Jackie Walker Ellison always knew she would be with the residents, from the moment she first heard. “The residents said to me, ‘Jackie, are you coming with us? I know we’ll be OK if you come with us.’ So I had no doubt,” Ellison said. “I knew for sure I would be evacuating, I called my husband and my mother and I told them, ‘I’m going with my residents, I’ll see you whenever.’ ”

The group of 24 residents was accompanied by Ellison to Westminster Winter Park, where they’re enjoying the hospitality of the residents and team members there. The Westminster Shores team is occupied with providing for the needs of the residents during Hurricane Idalia. “I think it brings everyone together as a team,” she said.

Ellison has worked at Westminster Shores for 29 years, and “I love my residents. I wouldn’t have been here so long if I didn’t love this place and my residents. God put us here for a reason,” she said. “Right now, the residents are happy, we’ve been watching movies and playing games, and everything is going smoothly.”

Michele McCann, Assisted Living Activities Coordinator, Westminster Palms, sheltering in place

“I choose to be with the residents during the most emotional time, like a hurricane, because that’s my quality as a caregiver,” said Michele McCann, Assisted Living Activities Coordinator at Westminster Palms. “Challenging times like this bring out the best in people, and I get to see it and share it.”

McCann was sheltering in place at the community in St. Petersburg, along with residents from Westminster Palms and residents from Westminster Point Pleasant in Bradenton. She has lived in Florida for more than 7 years, and has experienced three hurricanes in St. Petersburg so far. McCann said she feels that the way the team bonds, whether through an evacuation or sheltering in place, makes the team stronger. “We are going to come out better on the other side of this! We always do. We are so lucky that we are here, in our home, together, instead of relocating like so many had to. I have come to feel like this is my home, too.”

Carlos Santiago, Maintenance Engineer, Westminster Point Pleasant and Tiffany Mestre, Administrative Assistant, Community Support Services, temporarily at Legacy Pointe at UCF

A group of residents from Westminster Point Pleasant were also with Maintenance Engineer Carlos Santiago and Tiffany Mestre, an administrative assistant at our Community Support Services office in Orlando. The residents had evacuated from Bradenton due to the risk of storm surge and flooding, and were enjoying the hospitality of Legacy Pointe at UCF.

Santiago, the maintenance engineer, said that he had been through the worst in 2017 when Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico. “We were there with no power for 60 days, and we weren’t able to do anything,” he said. By comparison, he felt that everything was under control and being well maintained for the residents through both of his hurricane experiences as a Westminster team member.

“This job is personal for me,” Santiago said. “The residents are my family and I want to make sure that they are well taken care of.” In 2022, Santiago was recognized as Westminster Point Pleasant’s Team Member of the Year for his dedicated service to the residents. He said it was his honor to serve the residents.

Evacuating with the residents is just another extension of his commitment to the community, Santiago said. “This is my second time evacuating with the residents, and it doesn’t matter how many more. I will always volunteer to be there for them. We are here for each other and for the residents.”

Countless storms had also affected Mestre, a Florida native. But she had never had an experience like today’s. “It’s wonderful to help the residents and hear about their interests and stories. This is a great way to see how the residents live,” Mestre said. “I am getting to know what a day in the life of a CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant) and an ADON (Assistant Director of Nursing) are like. It has opened my eyes. Bless their souls for doing all of this.”

The effects of the storm had been mild in Orlando, but Mestre said that nevertheless, she and the residents felt more secure and had been brought closer together by the experience – and the residents were thankful for the security. “This has really brought our Mission to life for me in a way I had not experienced it,” said Mestre.

For Santiago, part of living in a hurricane zone meant more practice – and that he had found that the team is getting stronger through the experience. “The more we do this together, the more we become comfortable with each other, and the better organized we become. When you send a group of people together for one purpose and for our Mission, we get the opportunity to grow together and learn from each other,” said Santiago.

Beth Szabo, Services Coordinator, Riverside Presbyterian Apartments, sheltering in place

Another part of the Westminster Mission is to serve residents with low to moderate incomes, in our affordable Rental Retirement Communities. Beth Szabo, services coordinator at Riverside Presbyterian Apartments, was sheltering in place at the community to ensure that the residents were well cared for throughout the potential effects of the storm in Jacksonville.

“I’ve lived in Jacksonville since 1976, so I have lost count of how many hurricanes I’ve been through now. In 2004 they were coming so frequently we all said, ‘I’m over it, just let it go,’ ” said Szabo. “We have had to evacuate a few times over the years, like for Hurricane Matthew in 2016. But we did not have to this time.”

For Szabo, serving during a hurricane is a natural extension of her choice to work at the community, because the residents are like her extended family. “I have a heart for seniors, and the residents here mean a lot to me,” she said. “If something happens then I want to be here to help them.”

Szabo added that she feels safer riding out a storm at Riverside Presbyterian Apartments than at home. “Here at the community, I know that we have a great team looking out for everyone. We’re very small but we support each other.”

A facet of our Mission

While a hurricane is unexpected, serving the residents and supporting their fellow team members wherever we are and however we can is just another facet of the Mission of Westminster Communities of Florida: We serve from the heart and inspire older adults to enjoy happy, healthy and purposeful lives.

Be sure to learn all about how you can make a Westminster community your home to live or to work – find a community near you or follow us on Facebook and on LinkedIn!

A Must-Have Q&A Guide When Checking Out a Continuing Care Retirement Community

Picking the right Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC), like our very own Westminster Manor here in sunny Bradenton, Florida, can feel like a pretty big deal. Whether you’re looking for yourself or you’re on the hunt for your loved one’s perfect community fit, you need to find a place that feels just right. With so many choices, it can be a bit overwhelming. But don’t worry, we’re here with a list of key questions you should ask when touring potential spots. This way, you’ll know you’ve found the right place to be.

What Types of Care Are Offered?

The most important thing to know is what levels of care are on the table. Most CCRCs will provide a range of care options, starting from independent living (for those who are self-sufficient) all the way up to assisted living and skilled nursing (for residents who need a bit more help or specialized care). The main goal is to make sure that no matter what curveballs life throws at your or your loved ones, the right kind of care is always right within reach.

And while you’re at it, remember to inquire about temporary care options. This could be something like respite care, which offers short-term relief for primary caregivers, or short-term rehab for those recovering from surgery, an injury, or an illness. Take your time to understand each specific level of care – understanding these details will ensure you or your loved ones always know what care they have when they need it.

What About Costs?

Next up is talking about money. Different CCRCs have different financial commitments. You could find anything from an all-inclusive contract to a pay-as-you-go method. So, ask about the initial fee, the monthly charges, and what exactly you get for your investment. Here at Westminster Manor, the fees cover pretty much everything you need – maintenance, utilities, delicious meals, and healthcare services. The goal is to make sure you can focus on enjoying life without hidden costs popping up.

It’s important when you’re touring to ask about all the little and big costs. Ask about the initial entrance fee and what it includes. Then make sure to ask about the monthly charges that will occur, if they set in stone, or if they change based on the level of care received. And, of course, the most important question is what exactly you’re getting for your money.

What’s Life Like Here?

Now, onwards to the fun stuff. Your retirement community should be a place where you can really enjoy life – not just a healthcare provider. What amenities do they have? Any fun activities or clubs to join where you can meet people? Is there a buzzing social calendar packed with everything from bingo nights to movie marathons? A swimming pool for hot sunny days? It’s important to find a place where you can relax and live your life in the sun!

Here at Westminster Manor, we’re all about the fun. We’re talking delicious meals prepared by skilled chefs (imagine enjoying a five-star dining experience without even leaving your community!), a social calendar that’s chock-full of exciting events, and all sorts of clubs and groups that cater to a wide range of interests. With us, there’s always something happening, promising a life far from the mundane!

Who Will Be Looking After Me?

Let’s move onto another major player in the CCRC world – the staff. You see, they’re not just employees; they’re the heartbeat of any top-notch CCRC. They’re the friendly faces you’ll see every day, and the helping hands you’ll rely on.

So, when you’re doing the rounds, don’t forget to ask about the crew who’ll be looking after you or your loved ones. What kind of qualifications do they have? Are they certified in their roles, be it nursing, catering, or facility maintenance? And what about their training – how are they prepped to provide the highest level of care? It’s also smart to get a feel for the staff-to-resident ratio. A good balance ensures everyone gets the attention they need.

And, of course, don’t skip out on finding out about the medical team. Are there doctors in-house or on-call? Is there a registered nurse always on duty, ready to spring into action when needed? These medical pros are super important, especially in a CCRC where residents may have varying healthcare needs.

How Do Moves Between Care Levels Work?

Finally, you need to know what happens if you need to move up in your levels of care. Life can be unpredictable sometimes, and it’s crucial to know how the CCRC manages these changes. Who makes the call when it’s time for a resident to transition from independent living to assisted living or even to skilled nursing? Is it a group decision involving the resident, family, and healthcare professionals?

And here’s another big factor – does moving up a level mean the costs increase? Will the fees change, or are these potential increases already covered in your initial agreement? Some places might have a fixed rate, while others might charge additional fees for increased levels of care.

Wrapping It Up

Picking a CCRC is a major decision, and you need to think it through carefully. But, armed with these essential questions, you’ll know exactly what to look out for. We’re always here at Westminster Manor, ready to chat and answer any other questions you might have. With our amazing range of services, fun lifestyle, and dedicated team, we think we’re a pretty great example of what a CCRC should be. Remember, this isn’t just about finding somewhere to live; it’s about finding a community to call home.

How you can stay in touch with family and friends after moving to a senior living community

Are you considering a move to a senior living community but worried about how you’ll keep in touch with family and friends? You’re not alone. Many future residents have the same concerns.

Luckily, there are plenty of ways to stay connected and keep in touch with the people you care about. From FaceTime to card nights to private dining parties, residents have plenty of options to stay connected with their loved ones.

In this blog post, we’ll explore some of the best ways to keep in touch with family and friends after moving to a senior living community.

Enjoy a video call to have a virtual visit with family or friends whenever you like

A virtual visit can help maintain ties even when residents and their friends are separated by thousands of miles. Modern technology for video calling like FaceTime makes visiting easier than ever. Video calls allow residents to enjoy a face-to-face conversation with family or friends anywhere in the world, from the comfort of their living room. No expensive travel required!

Residents can use FaceTime or video chat services like Skype, Google Hangouts and Zoom to stay in touch with those who matter most. Grandparents can share stories with grandchildren who live far away or have regular catch-ups with distant relatives. Video calling also makes it possible for to host a virtual event, like a game night or movie watch party.

Enjoy a card or board game night and mix the “old” and “new” friends

With many social connections in their current neighborhoods, the prospect of moving to a senior living community can be daunting for many older adults. Fortunately, there are plenty of in-person social opportunities at senior living communities — some of them more informal than others.
Many senior living communities have groups of residents who enjoy a night of card games or board games. Play poker, Clue, Settlers of Catan or whatever you prefer, and enjoy having social opportunities and good friends at your fingertips.

These social events offer a reason for residents to invite their friends and family members over for a night of fun and laughter. It also provides an informal setting for guests to meet other residents and engage in meaningful conversations.

For older adults who want to make sure they stay connected to their friends, one surefire way to make things more fun is to invite their “old” friends to meet the “new” at a game night. It can make for a memorable evening filled with laughter and good company — all while bonding deeper relationships with fellow residents at the same time.

Host a dinner party and let someone else do all the work

Dining is an important part of life at a senior living community. But a special event may call for having a few friends over for dinner, and who wants to do all the cooking and dishes?

That’s why many senior living communities offer residents a variety of catered dining options, to invite guests over for a special dinner party. A special menu developed with the Dining department makes it simple and convenient to plan an event. Enjoy a luxurious meal without lifting a finger!

Inviting friends and family over to experience their community is also great to help those who may be considering making the move themselves. Guests get an up-close look at the lifestyle offered at their friend’s new home. Private dining options allow potential new residents to get an idea of what life would be like for them.

From poker nights to private dinners, there are plenty of ways for residents of senior living communities to keep in touch with family and friends. To learn all about how additional socialization opportunities abound at a Westminster community, find the community that suits you today on our Web site!

5 Reasons Why Southwest Florida is the Best Place to Retire in an Assisted Living Community

Many seniors face the difficult decision of where to spend their golden years. While there are many factors to consider, including cost of living and healthcare, one place stands out as an ideal location for seniors looking for an assisted living community: Southwest Florida.

Here are five reasons why Southwest Florida, with its beautiful beaches and vibrant cultural scene, is the best place to retire in an assisted living community.

Beautiful Beaches

Southwest Florida is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the country. Anna Maria Island, located just a short drive from Bradenton, is known for its pristine white sand beaches and clear blue water. Longboat Key, another nearby island, is a popular destination for beachgoers and water sports enthusiasts. Whether you enjoy sunbathing, swimming, or simply taking a leisurely stroll along the beach, Southwest Florida has something for everyone.

Mild Climate

One of the most appealing aspects of living in Southwest Florida is its mild climate. While the rest of the country may be dealing with snow and freezing temperatures during the winter months, residents of Southwest Florida can enjoy warm, sunny days year-round. This makes it an ideal place for seniors who want to escape harsh winter weather and enjoy a more relaxed, outdoor-oriented lifestyle.

Arts and Culture

The Sarasota area is known for its thriving arts and cultural scene. The Ringling Museum of Art, for example, features a stunning collection of art and artifacts from around the world, while the Sarasota Opera offers world-class performances throughout the year. With a wide range of museums, galleries, and cultural events, there is always something new and exciting to discover in Southwest Florida.

Excellent Healthcare

One of the most important considerations for seniors when choosing a retirement destination is access to quality healthcare. Fortunately, Southwest Florida is home to some of the best hospitals and medical facilities in the country. Residents of Westminster Manor in Bradenton, for example, have access to a range of healthcare services right on campus, including skilled nursing care with The Health Center at Westminster Manor and rehabilitation services.

Active Lifestyle

With its warm climate and abundance of outdoor activities, Southwest Florida is the perfect place for seniors who want to stay active and engaged. There are endless opportunities to stay active and healthy – including fitness classes available to residents. Plus, with a vibrant social scene and plenty of opportunities for volunteer work and community involvement, seniors in Southwest Florida can enjoy a fulfilling and enriching retirement experience.

Discover an Amazing Assisted Living Community in Bradenton

In conclusion, Westminster Manor in Bradenton, Florida is the perfect assisted living community for seniors looking to retire in Southwest Florida. With beautiful beaches, a mild climate, thriving arts and cultural scene, excellent healthcare, and endless opportunities for an active lifestyle, an exciting retirement experience is right around the corner. Visit the Westminster Manor website to learn more or schedule a tour today!

Helpful Tips for Long-Distance Grandparents

There are few things in life more enjoyable and rewarding than being a grandparent. One of the most important aspects of being a grandparent is maintaining a strong connection with your grandchild. This may be simple for grandparents who live near their grandkids, but it becomes tricky if you live far away. Check out four great tips for long-distance grandparents.

Schedule Regular Calls and Video Chats

If you live in another state than your grandchildren, the easiest way to stay in touch is by having regular calls or video chats. This can include phone calls, Facetime, and more. Schedule a certain day and time that you contact your grandchild to catch up. 

This gives you a chance to find out what’s going on in their life and watch them grow up, even from afar. It also helps you get to know grandchildren you may not be able to spend time with frequently due to distance.

Engage in Social Media

Social media has become a primary way to stay in touch and remain up-to-date on the lives of your friends and family. It is especially helpful for grandparents who live far away from their grandchildren. 

Being active on things like Facebook or Instagram allows you to see what’s going on in your grandkids’ lives and show them what you’re up to as well. It can also give you insight into who they are and the kind of things that interest them.

Organize Visits to Your Independent Living in Sarasota

One of the best ways to stay connected to your grandchildren is by having them visit your home. If you live in assisted or independent living in Sarasota, you can invite them to visit and spend time with you. 

Those in Sarasota assisted living may want to venture out and spend time at a local park, restaurant, or other fun places to make memories. For young children, this can be an exciting opportunity to explore new places while building a bond with you.

Set Up a Playroom or Kid’s Space

A great way to strengthen the bond with your long-distance grandchild is by giving them a home away from home. When they visit your home, create a certain space that is all theirs. This may include a playroom that has some of their favorite toys. You can also set up a bedroom for them that will make them feel comfortable. This will help them feel at ease and happy when spending time at your home.

3 Tips for Adjusting to a New Independent Living Community

One of the trickier things to do in life is move to a new location. This is especially true for older adults who are moving into an independent living community. Seniors who have been living in their homes for many years may find it hard to adjust to their new independent living area. 

Knowing a few easy tips and tricks can help you get acquainted with Sarasota assisted living or independent living communities.

How to Adjust to Independent Living in Sarasota

Moving into any new living situation can be difficult. The following are three tips for adjusting to independent living in Sarasota.

1. Join Any Community Groups

Most independent living communities offer a variety of groups for residents to join. This can include groups for fitness, arts and crafts, reading, and other hobbies. If you have a particular interest, try joining a group that you find exciting. 

Some of these groups offer weekly meetings or monthly events. This is where you will meet like-minded residents and become more acquainted with the members of your new neighborhood. Participating in community groups or activities can help you feel more at home and connected to your fellow residents.

2. Explore the Amenities and Services

Independent living facilities offer a wide selection of amenities and services for their residents. These include fitness centers, educational programs, dining options, and housekeeping services. Many communities also offer health services, transportation options, and wellness programs.

When you move to a new independent living facility, explore some of the amenities and services that are available to you in your community. Not only will this help you meet new people but it will also make you feel more comfortable and well-adjusted in your new home. 

3. Invite Friends and Family to Visit

Few things will make you feel more at home than spending time with friends and family. If you’ve just moved to an independent living community, invite some friends or family members over to see your new home. 

This gives you an opportunity to share your new living space with the people you care about. Having loved ones around will also help you feel more comfortable in your new location.

When your loved ones visit, you can also venture outside of the neighborhood to explore local aspects of your community. This includes nearby dining, entertainment options, and more. This will give you the chance to see all that your new area has to offer.

How to Care for Someone with Dementia

Becoming a caregiver for someone with dementia can be rewarding — and challenging. The CDC estimates that over 5 million Americans are living with dementia. As a result, many people have been thrust into a caregiver role. 

Regardless of whether someone serves as a sole caregiver or the duties are shared by many others, caring for someone with dementia can be unpredictable and overwhelming. Thankfully, there are resources in Tallahassee, FL, that can help.

The 3 Stages of Dementia

Dementia tends to progress over time from mild to moderate and then severe. 

1. Caring for Mild Dementia

Those with mild dementia may struggle to remember names, words, and new information. In the early stages, maximizing independence while offering support with new challenges is essential. 

A care plan for someone with mild dementia should include the following:

  • Create and keep a set routine 
  • Write down and keep track of appointments, events, and to-dos
  • Create a system for remembering to take medications or perform tasks
  • Keep meals consistent and familiar
  • Use a shower chair for additional support and to prevent falls

For those with mild dementia, the new need for help when performing everyday activities may be frustrating, so finding ways to keep their lives consistent is critical for maintaining their autonomy.

2. Caring for Moderate Dementia

As dementia progresses to the moderate stage, the person affected may struggle with judgment, sensory processing, and physical functioning. They may develop issues with inappropriate statements and poor personal hygiene. Many patients with moderate dementia begin wandering. 

Caring for a patient with moderate dementia requires some changes in the home. For safety and comfort, caregivers should consider the following:

  • Removing throw rugs to prevent tripping
  • Installing safety latches and locks
  • Bringing a commode into the bedroom for easy access
  • Ensuring all rooms have good lighting
  • Considering location devices or other helpful technology

When a patient moves to the moderate dementia stage, caregivers should consider employing professional help. If you haven’t already, begin researching palliative care solutions and Tallahassee memory care.

3. Caring for Severe Dementia

Patients with severe dementia may have substantial memory loss, low mobility, and bowel and bladder control issues. Often, full-time care is necessary. 

Unfortunately, few caregivers can safely care for a loved one with severe dementia in their home. Locating quality assisted living in Tallahassee, Florida, can ease stress and ensure your loved one’s security.

When to Look for Tallahassee Memory Care

One of the most critical aspects of caring for someone with dementia is knowing when to ask for help. Unfortunately, many caregivers become so focused on their patients that they forget to meet their own needs. 

There comes a time when it becomes necessary to transition a loved one’s care to professionals. Trusting an expert to take over 24/7 care will enable you to make the time you have left with your loved one more meaningful and enjoyable.

Does Alzheimer’s Affect Men and Women Differently?

Alzheimer’s disease is a common neurological condition that touches millions of people in the United States. This progressive disorder affects the brain and alters cognitive abilities. Its symptoms include memory loss, difficulty speaking, and inability to function.

While Alzheimer’s is diagnosed in both men and women, does it impact one gender more than the other? Find out how Alzheimer’s disease affects men and women differently.

How Alzheimer’s Impacts Men and Women Differently

Alzheimer’s disease does not affect men and women in the same way. Scientists know some of the reasons for this difference, but others are unclear.

It Is More Prevalent in Women

The biggest way that Alzheimer’s affects women differently than men is in its prevalence. Women are disproportionately diagnosed with the disease compared to men. An estimated 5 million people in the United States are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, and 3.2 million of them are women. 

The exact reasons for this are unknown, but there are several theories. One idea is that women tend to live longer than men. 

Most cases of Alzheimer’s are diagnosed in the late 60s and 70s. Since women are more likely to reach this age, this imbalance could be reflected in the number of people diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. However, researchers believe that factors besides age also contribute to the difference.

Some studies suggest that the reason more women have Alzheimer’s than men is due to differences within the brain itself. There may be structural differences within the brain that could increase the risk of cognitive decline in women.

There Are More Female Caregivers

While Alzheimer’s is often thought of in terms of the patient, it is important to remember the role that caregivers play. Women are far more likely to be caregivers to someone with Alzheimer’s. 

Whether they are a family member or professional care provider, most people caring for Alzheimer’s patients are female.

Alzheimer’s Care While Independent Living in Sarasota

Have you or someone you care about been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease? Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease that requires ongoing care. 

Finding a high-quality Sarasota assisted living facility can help you or your loved one with the care they need. If they are in the earliest stages of the disease, they may be able to stay in independent living in Sarasota with professional caregivers who visit the home. Find out more by exploring senior living resources.

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