June 2, 2022 by Dean Bellefeuille

Benjamin Franklin hit the nail on the head: An ounce of prevention really is worth a pound of cure. When it comes to detecting and addressing mobility issues in seniors, prevention is crucial. Falls in seniors lead to 300,000 hip fractures, 3 million emergency room visits, and 32,000 deaths each year, according to the CDC. (more…)


 April 20, 2022 by Dean Bellefeuille

Many of today’s seniors were raised during the Great Depression. They lived through a period of time when the nation was pinching pennies and cutting corners. Frugality was embedded in many of them very early on and often remains firmly in place for a lifetime. (more…)


 April 14, 2022 by Dean Bellefeuille

Memory loss and Alzheimer’s may seem synonymous. However, it’s important to realize that long-term memory frequently remains intact long into the progression of the disease. That is why tapping into those distant memories is an ideal strategy to help a senior with dementia stay engaged in current conversations by connecting to the past. (more…)


 April 6, 2022 by Dean Bellefeuille

From the moment you woke up this morning up until the end of an exhausting day, you have given your all to your older family member. You provided help with showering and dressing, prepared nutritious meals, cleaned the house, all while making sure the person was happily involved in enjoyable activities, made it for their 3:00 hair appointment, and picked up prescriptions and groceries afterwards. And while you are not doing any of these things for a pat on the back, a simple “thank you” would be nice – but is rarely offered. (more…)


 February 10, 2022 by Dean Bellefeuille

“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” – Dr. Seuss, The Lorax

Serving as a senior care advocate for a person you love is probably one of the greatest honors – and responsibilities – you’ll have as a family caregiver. It means completely comprehending the other person’s wishes and needs, and communicating them to those who can help make sure they are achieved. (more…)


 January 31, 2022 by Dean Bellefeuille

After almost 80 years and a variety of research studies to produce the result: a good genetic makeup and wealth really have little to do with our level of joy. The Harvard Study of Adult Development began in 1938, looking into the lives of such high-profile participants as John F. Kennedy and Ben Bradlee. Through the years, it is been expanded to add inner-city residents along with offspring from the original Harvard elite, and the results were unexpected, to say the least.

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 January 17, 2022 by Dean Bellefeuille

Many people have left their New Year’s resolutions by the wayside by the end of January, but who says resolutions should only be made in the beginning of the year? There’s no time like the present to start a brand new goal or habit, especially for those hoping to improve senior health and wellness.

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 December 9, 2021 by Dean Bellefeuille

If your child developed an illness, who would you call? Without a second thought, many parents have their pediatrician’s number on speed dial so that the professional they’ve meticulously selected to manage the medical care needs of their children can help as soon as possible. Due to their specialized training, working with a trustworthy pediatrician ensures the best possible care. (more…)


 November 23, 2021 by Dean Bellefeuille

While it may have started with your inner circle, your COPD diagnosis could now be gradually spreading to more friends and acquaintances. Revealing your COPD diagnosis and knowing how to reply to the many questions that you receive about it can be uncomfortable – for you, and also for those you are speaking with as well.

It may be surprising, but you may experience the biggest challenges in speaking with your primary caregiving partner – the person who is closest to you personally. The caregiver/care receiver relationship can cause a range of emotions. The individual receiving care may feel insecure and self-conscious as a consequence of needing assistance, that may result in feelings of anger, frustration, and embarrassment, amongst more. The caregiver may feel incapable of meeting every one of the required needs, regretful for mistakes made, and downright fatigued from trying to manage someone else’s care needs with their own.

There are some key ways to improve communication with your caregiving partner:

  • Do not beat around the bush. Clearly and honestly state your emotions and needs.
  • Always maintain respect and empathy for one another. The two of you are facing uncharted territory and evolving challenges, and will both make mistakes. A little grace will go a long way.
  • Listen to the other person – and let them know they’re being heard. Maintain eye contact, nod, or use other nonverbal cues to demonstrate you’re listening.
  • Refrain from using argumentative phrases and words, for instance, “You never…” or “You always…”. The person is probably going to become defensive and hurt feelings will intensify.
  • Make sure you are both fully knowledgeable about COPD, the associated symptoms and treatment options, and its typical progression. The physician will have resources for both of you to more accurately understand what you’re facing.
  • Be assertive without being controlling. Your emotions are valid and deserve to be shared in a constructive way without lashing out at the other person.
  • Remember that nobody is a mind-reader. If you’re assuming your caregiving partner knows what you are thinking or how you’re feeling merely by your actions, it opens the door to misinterpretation.

It can also be helpful to take a breather if emotions start to overflow. Take a break from one another while focusing on calming activities, such as listening to music, reading, exercising, or writing in a journal. When you both feel more at ease, try the conversation again.

At At Home Independent Living, we understand the stress which can come when dealing with a chronic health condition like COPD, and we are here to help. Our compassionate caregivers make ideal companions to talk with and spend time engaging in interesting activities together. We work with family caregivers to make certain they have time required for self-care, while enriching the lives of the seniors for whom they care. Contact us any time online or at 315-579-HOME (4663) for additional information about our in home senior care in Marietta, NY and the nearby areas.


 October 21, 2021 by Dean Bellefeuille

What inspires you to get out of bed every day? The answer is different for every single one of us, of course, but there is one commonality: it may allow you to live longer. Scientific studies are showing us that having a sense of purpose is an integral aspect in longevity, something shown in Japan – the country with the highest life expectancy on earth. The connection between purpose and living longer is important, and it’s one that often goes unaddressed. (more…)