Senior Living: Keeping Your Elderly Loved Ones Safe During the Pandemic
The News Can Be Frightening
The news is full of stories and statistics about the devastation of Covid-19 for our seniors in retirement facilities. The pandemic began in the US at a retirement facility. In New Jersey, over half the deaths are in those facilities.
The News Presents a Distorted Picture
If we just stop and consider what we know about senior living facilities, we realize that there is a wide variety of options when considering senior living facilities, ranging from ‘nursing homes’ to retirement communities with individual condominiums. There are many more facilities with no Covid-19 outbreaks than there are with outbreaks that create such frightening statistics of infections and deaths.
BeeHive Homes Offers Safe, Affordable Senior Care Choices
At BeeHive Homes, we are committed to the safety and health of our clients. Our facilities are designed to keep individual housing units small (from 12 to 21 residents). This allows us to more effectively control the residential environment. Here are some of the other ways we keep our clients safe:
Every resident has their own room and bathroom.
Our attentive caregivers are screened each day with a temperature check and a questionnaire about their recent contacts and travels.
Residents are being monitored closely for signs and symptoms of infection. Our staff members are doing daily temperature checks on every Resident.
If any Resident displays symptoms of COVID-19 they are isolated to their private room. The family, the doctor, and the department of health are contacted. The Resident is then tested for COVID-19. Appropriate isolation and medical attention are instituted.
Residents are served meals in their room. When needing assistance at meal time, Residents are brought to the dining room while maintaining a safe social distance between other Residents.
Activities are being done individually to keep Residents engaged and living well.
Family members and friends are allowed to visit through a window barrier, video chat, or on the phone. When on the property, all visitors and staff wear masks to prevent the spread of infection.
BeeHive Homes Offers Peace of Mind
Here at BeeHive Homes we have been in this crisis since March 11, 2020. So far, there hasn’t been a single positive case of COVID-19 among our Residents! The proactive measures we have executed paired with the small home-like environment of our BeeHive Homes makes us a safe place and the next best place to Home. If you or a loved one needs assisted living, don’t let this pandemic hold you back. We’d love the opportunity to help you make this decision and give you the options you are looking for.
Dealing with Fear
Fear. That’s probably something that a lot of us are feeling right now. We are living in a world full of unknowns since the recent outbreak of the COVID-19/Coronavirus. While there is reason to be concerned, we should not let fear overtake and overwhelm us. There are many ways to be prepared and to help prevent the spread of this virus. For the elderly, it is a very good idea to be extra cautious. Elderly are reported to be more at risk to complications from this virus then those who are younger than them.
Take the steps that the CDC has put into the place to keep yourself safe. Some of these steps are:
Wash your hands frequently and for at least 20 seconds, or use hand sanitizer when water isn’t available
Avoid going to crowded places, where it is easier for to be exposed to the virus
Avoid touching your face
Make sure you have any necessary medications that you need on hand
While it is good to follow the steps above, we need to make sure that we do not go into panic mode. That panic mode comes from a place of fear. It has been proven that living in fear can have significant impacts on your mental and physical health. Some ways that it can affect you are:
-changes in eating or sleeping patterns
-difficulty sleeping or concentrating
-worsening of chronic conditions or diseases
-increased use of drugs, tobacco or alcohol
There are many more ways that fear can affect your body. But I think one of the main things we need to focus on are ways to work through that fear and not to dwell on it. If you are living in an assisted living home, you are probably already being quarantined for your safety. Here are some ideas of how to not focus on the fear and to help with any boredom that you might be experiencing:
Shut off the news, media or even Facebook for periods of time throughout the day. Constantly having your mind bombarded with all the chaos can really cause anxiety.
Take care of yourself. Relax, remember to eat healthy, stretch, take a nap, meditate, pray or read your bible. Whatever it is for you that helps you feel peaceful.
Don’t be afraid to talk to people about your feelings of anxiety. Verbally processing things can help sort out all the chaos going on in your brain. If you already struggle with issues of mental health, this is all the more important!
Try to find activities that you enjoy to take your mind off of the current situation. Reading, doing puzzles, making crafts, sewing, playing games, etc.
If you are living in an assisted living home or nursing home and are experiencing a time where you aren’t allowed visitors for quarantine reasons, this is a great opportunity to call people on the phone or even write them letters the old-fashioned way!
Try to find things that you are thankful for in this season. Even if it’s small, try to find one thing per day. This really helps in changing our mindsets from negative to positive!
Above all else, try to reflect on this acronym for the word F.E.A.R. False Evidence Appearing Real. So many times, when we are afraid, it’s because we are constantly going over the what if’s in our minds. Try not to write the script before it happens. Most of the time, the what if’s that we spend so much time worrying about never happen anyway.