Sheila received her Bachelor of Science degree from Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois in 1988 where she double majored in Community Health Administration and Health Education. During her career, she has worked in a variety of roles throughout the healthcare spectrum including managing group homes for the disabled, coordinating social services for hospital transitional care units and skilled nursing facilities as well as a strong focus on operations and sales for assisted living communities. As past chapter president of the Florida Assisted Living Affiliation, she advocated for elder care and legislative changes while supporting professionals who worked in the assisted living industry. She brings her passion for helping seniors and her many years of healthcare experience to her role of Assisted Living Administrator for the Highland Lakes community. Her focus is on providing seniors with superior care and service that will give their loved one’s peace of mind.
This October is special at Highland Lakes Assisted Living as we celebrate 30 years of excellence in Palm Harbor. As a proud member of the St. Mark Village family, our mission for the past 30 years has remained the same; To enrich the lives of the Residents we serve by creating an environment that fulfills their every need – body, mind, and spirit. We strive to make every day special for our Residents by offering 24/7 assistance from caring Team Members in comfortable apartment homes.
In these unprecedented times, I know it is the peace of mind that comes with the quality care we provide that has kept us strong and gotten our Residents and their families through these difficult days. As our pandemic adjusted world begins to revive itself, it is important to take a deep breath and reassess our needs, and the needs of our loved ones, to restore well-being – body, mind, and spirit. If you or your loved one is struggling on their own, it may be time to consider one of the safest options – moving into an Assisted Living.
We would all love to live in our own homes, take care of ourselves and retain our independence indefinitely. However, in reality most people will need to move to an Assisted Living Facility (ALF). Approximately 70% of every senior 65 and up should expect to need at least a couple of years of long-term care, probably in an assisted living or nursing home. But when it is time to make the big move, it is not always easy to accept. Nonetheless, for many seniors there comes a point where living on their own simply is no longer safe.
So how do you know if it is time for assisted living? If you notice any of the below, it may be time to make a change.
5 Signs It Is Time To Consider Assisted Living
1. Difficulty with basic tasks
We all do dozens of little tasks each day that we take for granted but need to be done, such as, making meals, tidying rooms, doing laundry, and paying bills. No one likes having to do them, but the effects of aging can reach a point where they are much harder to do. For example, carrying things or moving from room to room can get more painful, and suddenly the simple chore of laundry becomes much more difficult. Do you or your loved one have a harder time accomplishing everyday tasks?
2. Chores being neglected
One way some seniors deal with it when things start to get more difficult is simply not to do the task. If you or your loved one is letting the dishes pile up, has a home covered in dust, and an ever-growing pile of dirty clothes, it is a sign that help is needed.
3. Frequent injuries (even if minor)
The statistics show that 2.5 million seniors are treated every year for injuries related to falls. In many cases the damage is serious, but even minor injuries become a much bigger deal the older you get. If you or your loved one is suffering from injuries, then they likely need more day-to-day help than they are willing to admit.
4. Significant weight loss
Eating well is one of the most basic of human needs. If you or your loved one is not maintaining a healthy weight, it could be because of difficulty with cooking their meals or a loss of appetite symptomatic of some larger problem. Either way, if they need daily assistance with meals, they should have regular care.
5. A tendency toward isolation
Loneliness can be as bad for a senior’s health as a physical illness. If you or your loved one are not getting out and remaining active, then living somewhere where you can enjoy socialization within a community without leaving could be beneficial. An assisted living facility can take care of daunting daily tasks and chores leaving more time to explore a whole new social community.
Moving to an assisted living facility is a transition for sure, but the experience can certainly be a positive one. Take time to find the right fit and make sure it meets all your needs. At the end of the day, the move is about safety and peace of mind.
If you, a family member, or a close friend have witnessed any of the above signs, it may be time to discuss assisted living facility options. To learn more about Highland Lakes Assisted Living call (727) 464-1750 or go to www.StMarkVillage.org/HighlandLakesAssistedLiving.