3 Ways to Have a Conversation with Older Generations

By Roz Jones

Today I want to talk about having conversations with the elderly. Some people find it difficult or don’t know what to say to older people. But it doesn’t have to be that way. 

Whether you work or volunteer at a nursing facility, have an elderly neighbor who you want to get to know, care for an older loved one, or some other way you interact with the elderly, knowing how to have better conversations with them helps both of you thrive. 

Senior members of the population are more prone to loneliness than other age groups. Weakened health, decline in physical mobility, and loss of driving privileges due to age all affect their ability to socialize. This doesn’t mean they don’t enjoy company.

3 Ways to Have a Conversation with Older Generations

  1. Ask open-ended questions. Ask about their family, for example. Encourage them to talk about their life. Seniors are a wealth of knowledge, filled with stories from decades of life experiences, funny stories, inspiring tales of courage, relationship stories, or even shocking things like wars or living in the Great Depression.
  1. Sit down with them with their photo albums, music records, or recipes and travel back through time, encouraging them to tell their stories behind the images.
  1. Try to find a quiet place that is relaxing and has few distractions. Turn off radios, televisions, and your phone. Be mindful of hearing challenges they might have. You may have to speak a little louder, slower, and more distinctly so they can understand your words. Be patient if they struggle to find the right words.

Use these conversation starters to help you build relationships with older generations.

  • What life experiences gave you the most happiness?
  • How did your military experience shape you?
  • Tell me about your friends growing up? What was school like?
  • What’s your view on ….? 
  • Do you recall the types of clothing or popular hairstyles of your youth?
  • What was your favorite time of day when you were younger?

I’ve just launched Shop With Roz, my online store filled with supplies and gifts for every caregiver. You can find a wide variety of products in the store to help yourself and your loved one. Check it out here!

After you have a look through the store, see any products you use and love as a caregiver, and think we should share them with everyone? Let me know!

It’s here, I am so excited to share a new caregiver app called CircleOf….This app will allow you to surround yourself with resources and experts from your community including ME!!!! As you are looking through the app, you will see my familiar face. I’m excited about this partnership and new ways to support you as you support your loved one. Here’s the link so you can explore the app. I would love your feedback and spread the word by sharing the link to family and friends.

Visit http://www.rozjonesent.com for more information on addressing mental health as a caregiver and check out my upcoming book!

Veteran’s Day Resources and Events

By Roz Jones

Tomorrow is Veteran’s Day, so now is the time to recognize the number of caregivers who are veterans themselves, or who are caring for a veteran, and all the resources available to them.

Here is a small sample of the events going on this week in honor of Veteran’s Day, specifically designed around caregiving.

#VetResources Check-In: Secretary Denis McDonough – Veterans Day Q&A

The VA is hosting a Q & A with the Secretary of Veterans Affairs on issues that are important to veterans, their families, caregivers, loved ones, and survivors.

Yoga 4 Caregivers

This group is putting on special programs for caregivers who are veterans or taking care of a veteran.

Red Cross – Stress Solutions

The Red Cross is hosting a Stress Solutions Workshop, which can be useful for both veterans and their caregivers.

Red Cross – Trauma Talk

Join in this discussion of stress and trauma together in a supportive interactive setting.

Like what you see here, and looking for more? Sign up to my newsletter at rozjonesent.com for more Veterans Day resources in your inbox tomorrow!

It’s here, I am so excited to share a new caregiver app called CircleOf….This app will allow you to surround yourself with resources and experts from your community including ME!!!! As you are looking through the app, you will see my familiar face. I’m excited about this partnership and new ways to support you as you support your loved one. Here’s the link so you can explore the app. I would love your feedback and spread the word by sharing the link to family and friends.

Medicare Open Enrollment starts October 15th!

Navigating the Medicare Open Enrollment process can be confusing and difficult your first time, and I want to help out! For caregivers and their loved ones who are in need of advice and help planning their Medicare enrollment, I’m offering a discounted counseling session for just $97! Go to https://rozjonesent.com to sign up!

Interested in making your own contribution to the Caregiver Cafe? There are guest blog spots open for November and December. Email assistrozjones@gmail.com for more info!

Visit http://www.rozjonesent.com for more information on addressing mental health as a caregiver and check out my upcoming book!

Medicare Open Enrollment Starts This Week!

Medicare open enrollment starts October 15th, and runs until December 7th! Take a look at these tips to be ready to enroll.

Check your mail. You may get important notices from Medicare or Social Security. If you’re in a Medicare plan, you’ll get an Annual Notice of Changes (ANOC) telling you of any changes in coverage, costs, or service area. Note any 2022 changes to your health coverage or any extra help you may get to pay for prescription drugs.
You may also get brochures and other marketing materials from insurance companies that offer Medicare health and prescription drug plans. Remember — plans aren’t allowed to call or come to your home without an invitation from you.

Think about your Medicare coverage needs for 2022. Carefully review your current Medicare coverage, and note any upcoming changes to your costs or benefits. Decide if your current Medicare coverage will meet your needs for the year ahead. If you like your current coverage, and it’s still available for 2022, you don’t need to take any action to keep it.

Preview 2022 health and prescription drug plans. You can use the official medicare.gov site to compare your current Medicare plan to others, and see prices based on any help you get with drug costs.

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Navigating the Medicare Open Enrollment process can be confusing and difficult your first time, and I want to help out!

For caregivers and their loved ones who are in need of advice and help planning their Medicare enrollment, I’m offering a discounted counseling session for just $97 through the end of October!

Go to https://rozjonesent.com to sign up!

Newsletter subscribers got this info a day early, sign up to the newsletter to get extra content and early access right in your inbox!

It’s here, I am so excited to share a new caregiver app called Circleof….This app will allow you to surround yourself with resources and experts from your community including ME!!!! As you are looking through the app, you will see my familiar face. I’m excited about this partnership and new ways to support you as you support your loved one. Here’s the link so you can explore the app. I would love your feedback and spread the word by sharing the link to family and friends.

Interested in making your own contribution to the Caregiver Cafe? There are guest blog spots open for October, November, and December. Email assistrozjones@gmail.com for more info!

Visit http://www.rozjonesent.com for more information on addressing mental health as a caregiver and check out my upcoming book!

Are You Productive or Just Busy?

By Roz Jones

Have you ever observed someone who seems to be busy all the time, but doesn’t really get anything done?  Do you feel that sometimes you’re in the same boat?  How do you know if you’re productive or just busy? It can be easy to get overwhelmed with the everyday tasks when taking care of a loved one. As a caregiver it’s important that we manage our time efficiently, not only to give proper care to our loved one, but to also make the necessary time to take care of ourselves.

Do you have goals?  People who are productive generally have goals and focus all of their work on achieving those goals. Of course there are always going to be distractions and obstacles when taking care of a loved one but those distractions don’t take priority over the big picture.

Do you focus or multi-task?  People who multi-task often seem very busy.  They’re always doing something, but they’re rarely doing any one thing very well. Tackle each obstacle you face as a caregiver directly, you’ll be more productive if you focus on doing one thing at a time.

Do you delegate?  Sometimes you may take on tasks that would really be better to delegate to someone else. It can be easy to want to say yes to every task because you want to provide for your loved one. But you might be able to delegate personal tasks while keeping the focus on business tasks. This will improve the quality of care given to your loved one, and minimize the personal burnout you feel as a caregiver.

Do you say no?  People who are productive know how to say no to something that is going to take them away from their own important work.  It’s okay to say no when you really don’t have time to fit in one more thing. Don’t feel guilty when saying no to certain tasks related to your loved one. Instead, feel reassured knowing that this will benefit both of you in the long run.

Do you let some things go?  It may sound counterproductive to erase some tasks from your to-do list.  But you may find that you have given yourself tasks that really won’t move your vision forward and will take up extra time.  It’s okay to scratch something off the list and go a different way.

Do you have a schedule?  People who are productive tend to have a schedule for each day of what needs to be done and when.  If you’re not planning ahead, chances are you’re staying busy but not productive.

Do you complete projects?  You can be busy doing something all day long, every day and never get a project completed.  If you find you’re starting a lot of things without finishing them, it’s time to look at your priorities and become more productive.

Do you feel peace?  When you spend your time very busy but not accomplishing much you might feel a sense of anxiety. You may worry about all the things you need to do that aren’t getting done. Try as best as you can to remain present in each moment. Rather than expressing a sense of anxiety, this will help you express gratitude appreciating the time you get to spend with your loved one.

But when you’re productive, you can actually feel peace when it comes to work.  You know what’s important and you have a plan to get it done on time. 

It can be easy to get overwhelmed with the everyday tasks when taking care of a loved one. As a caregiver it’s crucial that we manage our time efficiently. Not only to provide the utmost of quality care to our loved one but to also make the necessary time to take care of ourselves. If you are struggling with how to manage your time, you need to pre-order my new book, Lifted. It will include a workbook that will help you work through each step!

How To Spot Elder Abuse

By Roz Jones

Elder abuse is described by the following acts among family, household members, nursing home staff, or any individual. 

– When somebody attempts or causes physical injury to an elder

– When the family member or staff of a nursing home attempt or place an elder in terror or alarm of physical harm by torment, threat or harassment

– When one is convincing or persuading an elder by strength or intimidation to participate in a certain act from which the elder has the right to withhold

– When one meaningfully confines the movements of an elder without his consent

– Threatening the elder to a crime of violence

1. Detecting Abuse: 

– Burn marks from cigarette

– Black eye, lacerations, bruises or cuts that can not be explained

– Rope marks, a sign that the elder had been tied or slashed upon

– Hair loss, a sign that the elder’s hair was pulled

– Bodily sores and wounds

– Fingernails that are broken

– The elder’s skin is very poor condition

– Fractures of the bone

– Bite marks

– Eye glasses are broken

– Laboratory results are positive of drug overdose

– The elder displays a sudden change of behavior

– The caregiver refuses to allow visitors to see the elder

2. Signs Of Neglect: 

– Sores are untreated

– Displays significant signs of malnutrition

– May show signs of insanity

– Lack of personal hygiene care

3. Signs Of Emotional Abuse: 

– May display a nervous behavior

– Constantly be disturbed or upset

– Displays a negative attitude

– Always in anxiety

– Demonstrate signs of insecurity, such as constant sucking or biting of the fingers

4. Financial Abuse: 

– Unknown withdrawal from the elder’s account

– Unusual ATM withdrawals and switching of accounts

– The elder tend to withdraw money often

– The elder does not receive his pension or Social Security check from the mail

– The elder, without any valid reason, revises his will and changes his beneficiary

– The elder unexplainably signs contracts that results to unwanted financial commitment

– Signature was forged

– The elder has plenty of unpaid bill, despite his assets that can very well cover the bill

– Strange credit card charges

5. Signs Of Sexual Abuse

– Mysterious and unexplained genital infection

– Anal or vaginal bleeding that can not be explained

– Ripped underwear

– The elder may tell someone that she has been sexually abused

– Genitals are bruised

– The elder may report that her caregiver is showing her pornographic materials

– The report of the elder that she is forced to touch someone’s genitals, observe sexual acts, tell dirty stories and pose nude for a picture

6. How Can You Prevent Abuse To Yourself As An Elder?

– Keep and continue contacts with friends and neighbors

– Work out on a buddy system with other elders in the home

– Be active socially, do not be in isolation

– Protest and speak up if you are not happy or content with the way your caregiver or other family member treats you. Tell somebody

– Request your friends and other relatives to visit you often

– Open your mail personally

– Never sign anything unless it was reviewed by someone that you trust

– Always review your will once in a while

– Coordinate so that your pension or Social Security check be deposited directly to your bank account than being sent by mail

7. How Can You Prevent Abuse To Others?

– Pay attention. Be wary and look out for signals that might point towards abuse

– Call your loved one as frequently as possible

– Visit your loved one often and make certain that she is well taken cared of

– Always be open to your loved one, taking the time to always talk to her and assure her that you are there to help and can be trusted

– Get permission to periodically look into your loved one’s bank accounts as well as credit card statements for unauthorized withdrawals or transactions

8. How To Get Help If You Or Someone You Know Is Suffering Abuse:

911 or your local police emergency number or your local hospital emergency room

National Center on Elder Abuse

Washington, DC 20005

(202) 898-2586

Fax: (202) 898-2583

Area Agency on Aging

Almost all States have information as well as a referral line that can be useful and helpful in locating and finding services for elder abuse and neglect victims.

National Domestic Violence Hotline

The hotline provides support counseling for victims of domestic violence and provides links to 2,500 local support services for abused women. The hotline operates 24 hours a day, every day of the year.

1-800-799-SAFE

TDD 1-800-787-3224