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The Seven Dimensions of Balance for Well Being

by ShalomAdmin

If you have an elderly parent or loved one, you want them to experience the most out of their senior years. Living alone can become difficult for a senior, and without life’s previous responsibilities life can become stagnant. If for this reason you are considering board and care homes in Woodland Hills, West Hills for your loved one, find one that considers the concept of balance to be important. The International Council On Active Aging considers the concept of balance to be of primary importance. They identify seven dimensions that seniors should strive to balance with the help of their families and care givers.

The seven dimensions of balance are: physical wellness, intellectual wellness, social wellness, vocational wellness, spiritual wellness, environmental wellness and emotional wellness. A good senior assisted living home in Woodland Hills, West Hills will take the following actions to promote this concept of balance. They will promote 10 minutes of exercise three times a day for five days a week. They will make available, commonly online today, puzzles and brain games to stimulate thought. Your elderly parent or loved one will be able to volunteer in the community, visit with friends and take classes through his or her senior assisted living home, provided their physical and mental health allow, and thus help maintain social and vocational wellness.

Access to places of worship and needed items for a meaningful spiritual life will be made available to your loved one through a good board and care home in the Woodland Hills, West Hills area. Either on site or though a facility bus, your elderly parent will have environmental appreciation available through parks and nature walks. A good facility may provide yoga or t’ai chi classes to promote emotional wellness.

Balance will help your senior loved one get the most of the board and care home he or she has chosen, and provide for a more meaningful life and for people to help when life gets out of balance.  When left alone in their own home, seniors tend to become introverted and often don’t report feeling down or even report physical symptoms that could be a true sign of danger.

The most important thing you can remember for your loved one in a board and care home is that he or she should not simply be housed away, but attention paid to the above dimensions of balance so that the remaining years of your elderly parent or loved one are healthy and fulfilling.

At Shalom Elderly Care in Woodland Hills, we offer daily activities for our residents.  From music therapy, arts and crafts to visiting children and individualized exercise routines, we help contribute to the seven dimensions of balance and provide the care and support needed for our senior residents.  Please take our virtual tour or call us today at 818.883.8384

Running Marathons at age 101

by ShalomAdmin

Recently a 101 year old man ran the London marathon to its completion, becoming the oldest individual to finish the race. This demonstrates what medical professionals who specialize in aging understand – that there is no reason that a healthy and well cared for body cannot go on performing well into what we consider old age. If you’re in the Woodland Hills, West Hills area and are looking for an alternative to large nursing homes, look for one that keeps in mind that your elderly parent or loved one will be at his or her best the more active they are kept.

The 101 year old man who ran the London marathon all the way to the end had some advice for keeping active and living long. He said that diet is essential, and he eats small portions of fresh food. Food, it’s quality and freshness, is another reason to consider an alternative to large nursing homes in the San Fernando Valley. Small providers of elderly care tend to make a better effort to provide fresh and healthy foods.

So when the time comes to choose the facility with your loved one be sure to consider the activities available. You’re elderly parent need not prepare to run a marathon, but things like hiking trails, on site gym, and near by parks and fishing can keep your loved one happy in a facility that is an an alternative to a large nursing home. Many alternative to large nursing home facilities in the Woodland Hills, West Hills area also offer group activities with a physical therapy professional guiding the exercise. In addition, these facilities may have buses that can drive residents to places where extended hiking is available. If your loved one is capable of running a marathon, the facility would likely bend over backwards to make sure he or she got there and was provided with anything that was needed to attempt to run it to completion.

Your loved one will add happier and healthier life to his or her remaining years if he or she remains active.  While the 101 year old man can be held to be an inspiration, his example best serves as a reminder that no matter one’s age, exercise and diet remain essential to longevity, awareness, ability and skill. An alternative to a large nursing home will be aware of the physical needs of your elderly parent and provide a much needed stimulus to his or her body and mind. You and your loved one will be all the happier for the effort.

At Shalom Elderly Care in Woodland Hills, we cater to those with Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease and dementia.  While many who are afflicted with these illnesses do not have the ability to be active, we have many residents who are able to enjoy different activities.  Our beautiful private homes have expansive back yards and quiet neighborhoods to encourage daily exercise and fresh air.  Our food is prepared fresh daily and always includes fresh vegetables and fruit.  Enjoy our virtual tour to get a sense of Shalom Elderly’s welcoming environment or call us today at 818.883.8384.


Steps to Reduce Falling for the Elderly

by ShalomAdmin

Falls are one of the most important things to watch for when caring for an elderly parent or loved one. This is one of the main reasons a family will urge their senior parents to consider care in an elderly assisted living home. Not only are injuries from falls a problem that require on going treatment, adding medical expense to already strained retirement budgets, but they often, in an elderly person, create more chronic problems that cannot be completely cured. The fall itself could be an indicator of a much more serious problem effecting the brain and balance. This is why prevention from falls becomes of extreme importance in elderly care, especially when dealing with dementia or Alzheimer’s in elderly loved ones who may not remember the fall or its cause. An elderly assisted living home in the Woodland Hills, West Hills area will understand the importance of reducing the problems associated with falls.

Advice and guidelines from the American Geriatrics Society provide information on what to do when an elderly loved one falls, and more importantly, steps to reduce tripping and falling risks. A good senior board and care home will be familiar with this advice from the American Geriatrics Society. The steps a senior board and care home needs to take are fairly simple and easy.

People 65 and over have a one in three chance of experiencing a fall in a single year. For the oldest age groups the odds become seven in ten. Of these falls one in eight cause a serious injury, and the medical price tag rises to twenty billion a year, mostly paid for by Medicare.

Even if your loved one lives in an elderly assisted living home in Woodland Hills, West Hills, and Medicare pays the hospital expenses, it will be hard to calculate expense caused by the fall in terms of a change in lifestyle.  Even the best care in a senior board and care home cannot do anything about a physical injury that will cause your loved one to take fewer trips outside, become less self-reliant and interact less socially.  Often, loved ones will not tell anyone about the fall because they are afraid their independence will be taken away.

Elderly assisted living homes in the Woodland Hills, West Hills area strive to give the greatest care to guard against falls so your loved one can maintain his or her independence longer.

At Shalom Elderly Care in Woodland Hills, our private homes have been carefully equipped to protect your senior loved ones.  From the extra wide hallways to hardwood floors, our homes are tailor made to help decrease the chances of falling.  The expertly trained staff continually monitor each room and activity area for potential risks.  Please take the time to take our virtual tour or call us at 818.883.8384.

10 Signs that it Could be Alzheimer’s

by ShalomAdmin

As people age, there is a tendency to become more forgetful. While people often joke about those “senior moments,” many people may wonder if they’re simply having a forgetful moment or if they’re experiencing the early stages of dementia. For employees at board and care homes in Woodland Hills, for example, this can be a very real fear because they work with Alzheimer’s sufferers on a daily basis and are therefore more in tune with the warning signs.

Fortunately for employees of senior assisted living homes in Woodland Hills and throughout the world, there is an excellent resource at the Alzheimersreadingroom which gives 10 early warning signs that those forgetful moments could indeed be Alzheimer’s versus a list of forgetful moments which really aren’t that serious. Senior board and care homes in Woodland Hills should take special heed of these warnings to ensure that their staff are healthy, functioning and providing the best quality of service.

Memory loss disrupts daily life. Forgetting an appointment and remembering later is not necessarily a bad thing. Watch out if you find yourself repeatedly asking for someone’s name and still not being able to remember it.

Difficulty in making plans or solving problems. If you’re forgetting to pay bills or each numerical task is taking longer than it used to, this could be a problem.

Difficulty completing familiar tasks. If something that you used to do every day is suddenly becoming difficult enough that you need to ask for help, there could be an issue.

Being confused about time and place. Sometimes forgetting the day of the week is normal, but constant confusion about dates and timeframes could signal Alzheimer’s disease.

Not understanding visual cues or special relationships. Employees at elderly assisted living homes in Woodland Hills should be able to observe this one quite easily both in themselves and their residents. For example, people having a hard time reading, identifying colors or judging distance may be experiencing the onset of dementia. If the person in question is driving, then this can be especially serious.

Vocabulary problems. Persistent difficulty in identifying the right word to use or naming an object is something to be concerned about.

Losing things and getting lost. If you find yourself blaming people for stealing items or getting turned around and somewhat lost in the grocery store, this could be an issue. This is especially important for employees at board and care homes in Woodland Hills because a false accusation could lead to the employee being punished or even fired.

Poor judgment or grooming. If someone starts making decisions that seem out of the ordinary, or their grooming habits start to slacken, a problem could be in the works. This is something relatively simple for senior assisted living homes to track because of regular grooming schedules.

Withdrawal from social activities. Someone experiencing early dementia is likely to withdraw from activities that they have a hard time remembering how to do. If a loved one exhibits this behavior it may be time to take a closer look at the behaviors.

Mood and personality changes. While it’s typical for people advanced in age to be somewhat set in their ways, look out for sudden shifts in mood where the person becomes upset more easily than usual or appears excessively anxious, confused, suspicious or depressed. Because the employees at senior board and care homes get to see residents on such a regular basis, signs like these should be relatively easy to detect.

At Shalom Elderly Care in Woodland Hills, our staff are extremely well trained in not only watching for signs of Alzheimer’s but knowing how to treat a resident who has been officially diagnosed.  As your loved one gets older, do not hesitate to have them tested.  Our Shalom staff are here to answer any questions you may have so please take our virtual tour or call us today at 818.883.8384


How Close are we to an Alzheimer’s Vaccine?

by ShalomAdmin

For board and care homes in Woodland Hills and throughout the world, the idea of an Alzheimer’s vaccine could drastically change the way senior assisted living homes are operated. For example, families may find that thoroughly preventing Alzheimer’s disease through the use of a vaccine could ultimately cancel out the need for senior board and care homes.

And the idea of an Alzheimer’s vaccine could soon become a reality. According to a study done by researchers at Université Laval, CHU de Québec and published at, a large part of Alzheimer’s symptoms are tied to the buildup of the amyloid beta protein. A brain damaged by Alzheimer’s is unable to clear the protein and the buildup results in plaque that affects brain function.

The Alzheimer’s vaccine is essentially a series of weekly injections of monophosphoryl lipid A (MPL). The study has already been successfully completed in mice and MPL has already been deemed safe for humans. For elderly assisted living homes in Woodland Hills and beyond, this could mean that an Alzheimer’s vaccine is going to be on the horizon shortly. And while this could potentially decrease the number of residents in board and care homes it would also make it easier to care for many of the residents.

It is also not yet clear if the Alzheimer’s vaccine actually works to eradicate Alzheimer’s disease or if it simply lessens the effects by improving brain functioning. The study mentions that 80% of the amyloid beta plaques were removed and the mice showed significant cognitive improvements. But, there is no mention yet of a complete cure. The study conducted was actually quite brief at only twelve weeks. Given the short amount of time in which the study was conducted, it’s important for families to still consider elderly assisted living homes in Woodland Hillsor their respective areas before relying on a vaccine that has not yet been released to the market.

At Shalom Elderly Care in Woodland Hills, we specialize in caring for those afflicted with Alzheimer’s, dementia and Parkinson’s disease.  We support advancements in medicine and hope sooner rather than later there will be a vaccination to prevent, if not,  slow down the progression of this debilitating disease.  Until then, your loved ones deserve the best care possible so please take our virtual tour or call us today at 818.883.8384.

Planning Quality Visits with the Elderly

by ShalomAdmin

In the Woodland Hills and San Fernando Valley areas many alternatives to large nursing homes exist, offering a friendly and homey atmosphere for your parent who may be suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s.

If you’ve helped to move a parent into an elderly assisted living home, spending time with them remains as important as it ever was, if not more important. Maybe you live far away, and had to spend time, effort and money to facilitate the transition, and now you’ve been home a number of months, and though you keep in touch, you feel that soon it will be time to go and visit. Since the time of your trip will be limited, and honestly the time you have left with your parent is limited, consider making the most of the time you will spend with you parent once they are in a senior board and care home.

Here are some ideas for spending time with your parent who is in a senior assisted living home.  Once your parent has moved into their board and care home, you can help them feel like the new board and car home is their own home when you visit. This new place, in fact, their home, and if you’ve chosen a board and care home as an alternative to large nursing homes, the facility will feel more like a home to your parent and to yourself. Behave as you would, or as you used to, when you visited them in their old home.

Go to your visit with some idea of how you’ll spend your time.  Silences can be awkward for both of you, and make your parent uncomfortable.  You should have some appropriate activities planned.  If your parent is capable of leaving the facility going for a walk, or having a small meal are good choices. Even if your parent has Alzheimer’s, doing things like going through old photographs can be pleasurable and helpful. If your parent mistakes people in the photographs for someone one else, this is OK and you should just go with the flow.  The important thing is that your parent enjoys his or her time with you.

These are just a few tips for helping an elderly parent who has entered a board and care home at

At Shalom Elderly Care, our board and care homes in Woodland Hills ensure that your loved one has the most comfortable “at home” experience possible.  We like to get to know our resident’s family members so when they visit, we can assist them (if needed) in making their time with their loved one as meaningful as possible.  Please take our virtual tour or call us today at 818.883.8384.

Preparing the Elderly for Board and Care

by ShalomAdmin

Compassion becomes the key when talking to an elderly parent about board and care homes, when that time comes, and though you wish circumstances were different, no longer can the necessity of elderly assisted living be denied.  A parent coping with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease needs a comfortable, well-cared for home, and that place may no longer be in their own home, or living with you and your family.

If you live in Woodland Hills or the San Fernando Valley, many options exist in senior assisted living homes.  The most important thing you do in transitioning your parent to a board and care home will be the conversation you have with them. Structure your conversation with your parent as a discussion. No one likes to feel changes are being forced on them, and with dementia or Alzheimer’s emotional stress becomes a major factor in their well-being. Generally, your parent will already have some desire for care but may be intimidated by the idea of moving to an elderly assisted living home.

Today, and especially in the Woodland Hills and San Fernando Valley areas many places exist as an alternative to large nursing homes.  And the image of a large and impersonal nursing home plagues many elderly parents, combining a threat to a loss of freedom with a fear of loneliness.  In your conversation with your elderly parent, two things must be emphasized at the same time. One, their home is important to both of you, its memories, and its loss is more than just a loss for your parent. It’s a loss for the entire family. Two, that you envision them in a comfortable and well-cared for elderly assisted living community.

Stress the relief your parent will have by no longer needing to care for his or her own home, such as no more dealing with contractors for repairs or electrical work, no yard work and no need to remove snow from a roof or driveway.  Talk about what the facilities you will consider offer in terms of extras such as classes and exercise activities.

As your parent becomes comfortable and you’ve made a list of things they will want in a board and care home, offer to go tour some with your parent. Stop if the conversation makes your parent feel uncomfortable or if they become defensive.

These are just some useful tips for discussing senior board and care homes with your parent or loved one.  For a more comprehensive list, visit

At Shalom Elderly Care in Woodland Hills, our private residential homes are specifically tailored for those suffering from diseases such as Alzheimer’s, dementia and Parkinson’s, but upon entering our homes, there is a feeling of warmth and security.  Please take our virtual tour or call us today at 818.883.8384.

Checklist for Board and Care Homes

by ShalomAdmin

You want the best for your elderly parent.  If your parent is suffering from a condition like dementia or Alzheimer’s, a friendly and comfortable place becomes an absolute necessity for their well-being.  Woodland Hills and the surrounding San Fernando Valley areas offer many great alternatives to large nursing homes. You have lots of choices. However choices can be time consuming, so what do you look for to begin narrowing your search for a comfortable, well managed, board and care home.

First you’ll want to consider the interest the facility takes in the daily activities of your aging parent.  Even parents suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s can find worthwhile projects in a group setting. A good elderly assisted living home in West Hills, for example, will offer classes and activities appropriate for your parent or loved one.

The most important aspect that both parents and their caregivers regard as first and foremost is cleanliness and safety.  The staff of the elderly assisted living home that your parent chooses should be ready to address any concerns regarding the state of the facility.  The best board and care homes agree that to the resident “it should feel like home”, and the staff “should feel like family”.

Amenities are next on the list of offerings to consider from the best board and care homes.  Most senior assisted living homes in Woodland Hills and beyond, have some form of the following: libraries with books, recordings and videos, computer rooms, classes for hobbies and fitness, an all hours cafe or dining room, easy access to shopping and church services. In some ways, your parent’s new elderly assisted living facility should feel like a vacation retreat.  Many have short hiking trails, and planned activities to tour local spots of interests using a facility bus.

Staff is extremely important in a board and care home.  Look for a facility that makes visitors feel as welcome as residents.  Little touches go a long way. A place where the staff makes sure they greet visitors with a smile and a hello, referring to you by name, makes not only you comfortable, but your parent will feel more in charge of his or her environment. Many senior assisted living homes have family nights where the staff plan events for everyone from great-grand parents to grandchildren.

These are just a few points to look for in choosing a board and care home.  The Changingagingblog has a more comprehensive list for your review.

Shalom Elderly Care in Woodland Hills provides comprehensive services for those suffering from Alzheimer’s, dementia and Parkinson’s disease.  Our private homes which house up to 6 residents have the welcoming home environment and well trained staff which families are looking for.  Please take our virtual tour or call us today at 818.883.8384.

Sarcopenia and the Elderly

by ShalomAdmin

Board and care homes in Woodland Hills are constantly on the lookout for ways to ensure maximum health for residents. One of the concerns that the staff at senior assisted living homes have is the prevalence of sarcopenia in senior citizens. Sarcopenia is the gradual loss of muscle mass, and it’s very common in the elderly population. Fortunately, a study conducted by the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) published at Medical News Today found some very specific nutritional and physical linkages to sarcopenia that senior board and care homes in Woodland Hills and throughout the world can adopt and use for their residents.

It comes as no surprise that the best way to prevent sarcopenia is by exercising with some type of weights for resistance. Elderly assisted living homes can easily incorporate these types of activities safely in their agendas to further help patients remain healthy. This is especially helpful because the loss of muscle mass generally tends to lead to more falls, which can be very dangerous, and even fatal.

The other thing that board and care homes can do is adapt the findings of the IOF study for the patients’ nutritional menu. The study found that protein, vitamin D and a large quantity of fruits and vegetables are key to combatting muscle loss. The senior assisted living homes in Woodland Hills and beyond can work with doctors and nutritionists to ensure a menu that is rich in lean proteins combined with fresh produce. In addition, the senior board and care homes can provide a combination of Vitamin D supplements along with outdoor activity, which also enhances Vitamin D production in the human body. And, the outdoor activity is a perfect way to also increase the exercise of the elderly patients living at the facilities.

At Shalom Elderly Care in Woodland Hills, we provide fresh fruits and vegetables and every meal to ensure our residents are receiving the optimum nutrition.  Our residential homes have spacious backyards which are conducive for exercise and social activities.  Please take our virtual tour or call us at today 818.883.8384.

Being on the Lookout for Shingles

by ShalomAdmin

There’s been a lot of talk about the flu this season, but it’s important for board and care homes in Woodland Hills and beyond to also be on the lookout for other serious illnesses, such as shingles. There is quite a bit of information out there, but sometimes it’s difficult to separate fact from fiction. And if employees at senior assisted living homes aren’t informed, the consequences could be severe.

Fortunately, an article published at Boca Home Care Services provides a detailed, yet concise summary of what shingles is, how people catch it and what it does to the body. This is key information for senior board and care homes to arm themselves with so they can decide whether they should have their employees and residents vaccinated.

The following is a summary of the key facts from the article:

  • More than 50% of the U.S. population will contract shingles by the time they’re 80 years old.
  • Shingles is related to the reactivation of the chicken pox virus due to stress, aging and changes in the immune system. Elderly assisted living homes in Woodland Hills and all over the country should definitely maintain careful records on residents to see which patients are dealing with stress or immune issues to evaluate if they’re at risk for shingles.
  • Shingles typically has three stages: pain or a prickly sensation along the nerve corridor, an itchy rash and finally blisters.
  • If you’ve already had chicken pox, shingles is not contagious.
  • The chance of contracting shingles more than once is 5%.
  • Complications related to shingles include sleep disruption, depression, hearing and vision impairment, bacterial skin infections, pneumonia, facial paralysis or encephalitis.

Vaccination is a controversial issue and the shingles vaccine is a relatively new development. It was just released to market in 2006. However, because shingles is so common and can be quite damaging, board and care homes in Woodland Hills and beyond should carefully evaluate the possibility of treating staff members and residents with a shingles vaccine.

At Shalom Elderly Care in Woodland Hills, we carefully review each resident’s health history and their current state of mind both mentally and physically.  We inform our families of the latest medical news so that they can make informed decisions on how to care for their loved ones.  Please take our virtual tour or call us today at 818.883.8384.