Activity Helps Memory Disorders

Hiex, Anthony Diaz here talking to you about the challenges that come along with memory disorders, and or stroke victims that affect an elderly person’s ability to function on many levels. At Rosa’s we provide activities geared toward helping our residents maximize both their dexterity and memory challenges.

Part of prompting memory is the consistency. Rosa’s residents have an activity director that offers different activities at least three times a week. One day it is music therapy, the next chair exercises, and a third is fun with food crafts. All of these activities provide different challenges, and they are planned at the same times every week, again to aid in consistent scheduling.

Music therapy at Rosa’s includes ukuleles, percussion instruments and the tools like music books to make it possible for the residents to play songs of their choice. The exercise, aside from simply being fun, offers the opportunity to improve or maintain motor skills as well as accessing memory to be able to learn and remember the words to songs. Visual and audio support is used to help encourage the
residents.

The chair exercises are a combination of yoga and other stretching methods that ensure blood flow throughout the body. Again, it is helpful to have a structured reminder to move and stretch the body as the aging process as well as the other challenges can interfere with how one’s body moves. The exercises are a gentle reminder to move. The exercises vary in difficulty to accommodate different
abilities.

Fun with food crafts is just that, fun. We do anything from watermelon slices shaped by southwestern cookie cutters, to pretzel and cheese log cabins. Then the residents get to eat their creations. What could be more fun? All the while encouraging the use of their imaginations and motor skills.

These are just a few of the different concepts that Rosa’s offers their residents to ensure a comfortable aging process despite some very difficult challenges. We are so proud of these activities and are always looking for more ways to provide enjoyment for our residents.

Update On Rosa’s Garden

mysterytomatoHi this is Anthony Diaz and if you have not seen lately, our garden is doing very well. I wanted to update our readers on our garden. Our residents have been watching the growth of their garden. What we have realized is that just because they are not home, they can still garden.

Most people enjoy gardening and just because they are in an adult care home gardening should not have to end. We realize that gardening helps with mobility and other issues arise in seniors. This wonderful pastime provides exercise, stimulation, accomplishment as well as other benefits that are healthy for the mind and body.

If you did not know, gardening increases sensory stimulation those who have some sort of memory loss or dementia reduce disorientation. Therapeutic gardens in residences for the elderly may reduce pain perception as well.

The most important thing here at Rosa’s the gardening is helping with is the delicious outcome we get and we have gotten our share of bell peppers, chili pepers and tomatoes to name a few. Our residents are often eager to show off their potted garden and we will continue to grow not only fulfilled lives at Rosa’s but wonderful gardens.

Meditation Garden

ROSAS11Hi this is Anthony Diaz and we are very excited here at Rosa’s that we now have a semi private meditation garden. Here at Rosa’s life become a balancing act and sometimes, we forget to balance. For that reason, we have created a place where residents as well as staff can step inside the meditation garden and just relax.

We know that meditation gardens are calming, and our residents enjoy things that are calming. Feeling calm creates short-term state of relaxation which helps with stress and anxiety that many people with memory issues may feel. That is yet another reason why we love having the meditation garden is it creates a calmness for our residents.

Clients helped pick the design and even the flowers that would go into the meditation garden as well as they help maintain it. Sometimes just holding the rake in your hand, even in a wheelchair, can stimulate memories of younger year and cause a calming effect.

It is also a place for our residents to garden, take responsibility for their plants and take the time to watch the growth. We have worked on all of this to take yet another step to more holistic approaches to aging and healing.

Our meditation garden is a work that is always being changed and created and our residents are always looking for ways to change and improve this wonderful place for peace. They have taken a sense of pride in it and enjoy the calmness this gift of nature brings them.

Music Therapy At Rosa’s

rosa musicHi this is Anthony Diaz and I am really excited about bringing music back to Rosa’s. I want to talk about an article written by Susan King that was published that let people know how the power of music can help with dementia patients. It also talked about how it helps with memory and depression. To go one step further, it talked about how actually playing an instrument of sorts can have “restorative” abilities to the brain. Basically music is helping aging adults manage everything from chronic pain to Alzheimer’s disease.

People with Parkinson’s are able to regain some of their overall functioning in certain cases. In other cases, music sings helps the stroke-stricken to speak sooner. Music acts like good old fashion medicine for the mind the body and the spirit.

At Rosa’s once a week, Leslie comes in with a handful of music, ukuleles and percussion and let the clients sing and play. Music books were created based on what the clients wanted to play and learn. I must say some of them sounded pretty good singing the Rolling Stones You Can’t Always Get What You Want.

Leslie, who helps the clients learn the music and gets them playing and singing says that working with the residents at Rosa’s is not only a delight, but it is good to see them take so much interest in this. She states the residents are talking about calling themselves The Geriatric Musical Band. We are pleased that our residents are happy and finding joy in music, even if they sing a little off pitch.

Helping Residents Feel Good Aagain

1Hi this is Anthony Diaz. At Rosa’s adult care we really work hard on making a difference in people’s lives. I think what we do is so unique and caring that I wanted to take a few moments out of my day and share with you all a success story that I think you will enjoy.

Recently, a new resident came our way. This resident was basically not communicating, eating, or able to care for themselves. They came to us and my team and I had to decide how we best could handle this situation and get this person functional again. In my heart, I knew this individual could be helped and so I took a day to figure out what they needed.

Once we got them seeing a doctor and their medication taken care of, I went out and got an old printer and told them to fix it. This persons eyes lit up. I was told they loved to take things apart and put it back together so I gave them that opportunity. Suddenly, the resident was asking for more. At Rosa’s we enjoy helping residents feel good again.

This resident seemed nervous and anxious and a bit jittery, so we gave him lots of gum to chew on, and they calmed down. Chewing and putting things together was what they needed. We began to speak Spanish to them as well as English, and suddenly, they were talking and laughing.

They soon started joining on conversations with the residents and staff. They were smiling, laughing, walking around and doing the things that they once used to do. I remember when our holistic health doctor came in she had said “Wow your new resident seems very high functioning.” I had to laugh because Dr. Woods had no clue how this person came to us.

I told her the story and she said that is why she works with us, because we all try new things that are as natural as they can get. Helping this resident by allowing them to experience what they loved doing such as putting things together was a great natural way to get them to recognize their environment and the potential they still had.

I enjoy it when things turn out like this, and in such a short time, we have our residents living, laughing and enjoying their life again. I enjoy it so much that I had to share it with you all.

Spring Has Sprung

3c0a3bee-ffb0-4932-8d0e-d449189a150eHi Anthony Diaz here and spring has sprung. The rabbits are enjoying all the fresh growth and cool sunshine, and our residents are appreciating being able to be outside in the fresh cool air also. Last week we talked about putting in the garden in pots to give our residents an activity that is therapeutic for motor skill coordination as well as a source for movement and exercise.

This week’s art therapy was an opportunity for our residents to enjoy a delicious root-beer float while decorating individual watering cans to use on the garden.The idea for this came about as a way to occupy those that are interested in the continued care for the garden. Art therapy is about offering many kinds of different activities that accesses creativity, motor skills, treats and fun, and spring is ripe with potential ideas to keep everyone engaged and involved.

We used stickers and markers of all colors. Who knew that stickers were so much fun? We may use them again for future projects. They are a simple way to access creativity without stress over motor coordination, and the markers worked well also for simple design.

What isn’t fun about root-beer floats? Of course, everyone was excited over the bubbly sweet treat. We all talked about ice cream and discovered that several of the residents had worked at various ice cream counters when they were young. We talked about our favorite flavors and what kinds of ice cream treats we liked. There really is something to be said about the idea of an ice cream social as an opportunity for carefree conversation.

Now everyone has their own easily identifiable watering can, and hopefully this will encourage their continued participation in the whole outside project. We at Rosa’s strive to provide an environment that encourages our residents to move, exercise, be creative, enjoy the company of the other residents, and simply continue living a healthy life. Happy spring everyone.

Gardening at Rosa’s

gardenHi, this is Anthony Diaz and one of the wonderful things we do at Rosa’s to stimulate activity is gardening. We call it container gardening and we are excited that there are many things you can grow in containers such as squash, tomatoes, potatoes, cucumbers, radishes and a host more.

Our clients who want to participate help get the containers ready and help plant the plants. The clients often get excited because they know with water and care, these plants will be on their dinner table soon.

Working in the garden provides you with an outdoors fitness alternative. Gardening has many health and therapeutic benefits for older people. It is enjoyable, and provides a source of exercise. For those who did not know, gardening also encourages use of all motor skills which is wonderful when dealing with dementia or Alzheimer’s.

Did you know there is an actual clinical profession that exists called horticultural therapy where people use gardening to heal? Now maybe it’s the sunshine that boosts people’s mood or maybe it is digging in the soil or just being part of creating something, but gardening really has great benefits for seniors.

Gardening is also good for depression and anxiety. Recently we learned that there is a strain of bacterium in soil that has been found to trigger the release of serotonin, which in turn elevates mood and decreases anxiety.

These are some of the reasons we like to make sure we grow some of our food and do gardening for our seniors here at Rosa’s. It just makes good sense, and salads!