June 14, 2021 by Dean Bellefeuille

Think of the many tools you use each day – your phone, hairbrush, toothbrush – simple things, but ones you can’t imagine living without. For millions of older adults, there are basic adaptive devices available that could mean the difference between living at home and facing a move to assisted living. Yet nearly half of seniors living at home aren’t utilizing these helpful tools – even though costs are minimal.

A recent National Health and Aging Trends Study assessed the ability of older adults to perform tasks such as rising unassisted from a seated position and walking, and found that thousands of the participants could benefit from assistive devices.

Not only that, but the risk of senior falls from the lack of simple assistive devices is increased, leading to hospitalizations, serious injury, and disability that could easily have been prevented. In fact, once these devices were made available to seniors, according to research, disability rates for seniors dropped by 50%, along with a decrease in pain levels and an increase in the ability to perform activities of daily living independently.

Dr. Kenneth Lam, author of the study, explained, “It’s a technical problem which, unlike so much of aging, is actually solvable. In the hospital, I can order an M.R.I. and charge the system thousands of dollars. But down the road, that won’t help patients not fall. What happens when they get home?”

A program at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore is looking to change this by introducing inexpensive assistive tools to seniors. Through several in-home visits by an occupational therapist, nurse, and repair specialist, needs are identified and resolved. That could mean installing grab bars in the bathroom, removing fall hazards, or adding a shower chair or raised toilet seat. Small changes such as these can make an enormous difference in a senior’s ability to safely and independently manage activities of daily living.

With At Home Independent Living, the leading provider of Syracuse elderly care and care in surrounding areas, we’re pleased to offer in-home evaluations to recommend changes to the home environment that enhance safety and help seniors remain independent and in control. We can also help enhance senior’s safety, comfort, and independence through services such as:

  • Offering accompanied transportation for errands, medical appointments, and fun outings
  • Preparing nutritious meals and ensuring sufficient hydration for seniors
  • Providing assistance as needed with personal care needs for safe bathing/showering, getting dressed, etc.
  • Maintaining a clean and organized home
  • And more

Contact us at (315) 579-HOME (4663) to schedule your assessment today!


 April 22, 2021 by Dean Bellefeuille

What are your first thoughts when you wake up each morning? Are you looking forward to what your day holds, or would you prefer to crawl back under the covers and remain there? If you are experiencing more dread than delight as you think through your caregiving responsibilities for the day, you’re not the only one. In fact, one of the leading caregiving challenges is caregiver dread.

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 January 20, 2021 by Dean Bellefeuille

It may have come completely without warning: an unexpected fall that led to a fractured hip as well as the requirement that Mom stay at home with extra support. Or, it may have been building up over time, such as through the slow and incremental progression of Alzheimer’s disease. Whatever the circumstances, you have now found yourself in the job of family caregiver, and maybe are wondering specifically what this means and just how to navigate these new waters. (more…)


 December 9, 2020 by Dean Bellefeuille

Think of the most perfect holiday season you can imagine. While that image may vary a bit for each of us, it might include gifts, lights, good food, and traditions passed down through the generations. Yet what most certainly rings true for all of us is the joy in spending the holidays with seniors and other family members we love. (more…)


 September 18, 2020 by Dean Bellefeuille

Disbelief. Shame. Awkwardness. Discomfort. Each one of these feelings can cycle through a family caregiver’s mind when a senior with dementia showcases disinhibited behaviors, such as:

  • Rude or tactless comments
  • Inappropriate sexual remarks or advances
  • Removal of clothes at improper times
  • Other socially unacceptable actions

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 September 14, 2020 by Dean Bellefeuille

While circus clowns and comedians may stir audiences to laughter over such stunts as slipping on a banana peel, there is nothing funny about falling when it comes to the elderly, who are at an elevated risk for serious injuries which could bring about a lengthy rehabilitation process. Not only that, but there’s a lesser known complication that typically arises from a senior’s fall: a fear of falling again which can be extreme enough to impact quality of life and health. (more…)


 July 6, 2020 by Dean Bellefeuille

In an ideal world, we might perfectly compartmentalize our caregiving duties, sticking to a routine that met the requirements of a senior loved one, while enabling the time necessary to manage our assortment of other responsibilities. But naturally, life does not always follow our desired script, and conflicting needs are not unusual when caring for an older adult. Many older adults balk at the need for help, while others may come to depend too heavily on an adult child, leading to unfulfilled expectations and ultimately irritation for both parties. (more…)


 June 25, 2020 by Dean Bellefeuille

Searching through bins, cabinets, and closets, pulling out assorted items from drawers, and searching repetitively through a number of items might be frustrating for individuals providing care for a loved one with Alzheimer’s, but in reality these behaviors are fulfilling a purpose. Rummaging can supply a measure of comfort for those with Alzheimer’s, through identifying familiar items and finding purpose and meaning. (more…)


 June 16, 2020 by Dean Bellefeuille

Stress is inevitable, and actually, not always a negative thing. After all, as the saying goes, “A diamond is just a piece of charcoal that handled stress exceptionally well.” Nonetheless, especially if you are providing care for a senior family member, the amount of stress can quickly intensify and be overwhelming, and when not handled well, lead to serious health issues. (more…)


 June 11, 2020 by Dean Bellefeuille

A time of crisis can bring out both the very best together with the worst in us. Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, we’ve heard stories of people hoarding items and selling them in order to make an excessive profit, coupled with stories of heroes who selflessly met the needs of others despite their personal fears. (more…)