Remembrance Sunday

Lest we forget

At the eleventh hour on the eleventh day of the eleventh month – we remembered them.

In preparation for remembrance Maggie created a beautiful poppy field on the lawn in front of Huntington House, with more poppies added each day in the run up to Sundays service.

Remembrance Sunday The residents decorated the window in the main lounge looking out onto the grounds with their stunning autumnal colours.  The staff created some beautiful knitted poppies from the red Huntington House wool, which were on display at reception to welcome visitors, with new smart plaques on the front door too.

Remembrance Sunday decorationsLest we forger

The importance of short term Respite Care

The importance of short term Respite Care

The demand for Respite Care during the summer months is unsurprisingly high, with many families heading off on holidays whilst their children are on the summer break from school and others planning action packed days, during the warm weather.

For those who have a caregiving role in the family, the need to balance the support they give with their wider family can be challenging at this time of year.  Whilst caregiving is very rewarding, it is demanding both physically and mentally and being able to take time away, can be hugely beneficial to health and wellbeing.

What is the purpose of Respite Care?

Taking a break from caring for someone else is the main reason people consider respite care, giving carers time for themselves.  This can be based on day care, care in the home or a short stay at a residential care home of 1 to 4 weeks.

Professional Elderly Care - Huntington and Langham resident with children

When is it time to consider Respite Care?

There are many reason caregivers make the decision to organise Respite Care for a person they support and our recommendation where possible is to plan this ahead of time during busy periods like the Summer Holidays.

  • Simply take time out to reboot and recharge physically and mentally
  • To enable them to spend more time with children or the family during school holidays
  • When the list of general household to do’s aren’t getting done and they need to catch up on themselves.
  • During renovation work to the home, which is likely to be disruptive
  • The need to attend medical appointments or treatment themselves
  • They simply just need a break

What are the benefits of short term residential respite care?

Whilst there are a number of options available for a respite break, such as asking friends or family to help out, employing a live-in carer or sourcing home care from a paid carer, there are added benefits from opting for short term residential care.

A short term stay in a luxury all inclusive residential home like Huntington House, can be a holiday in itself for people who need extra help in their day to day lives or live alone with change of scenery and the peace of mind being in a welcoming, safe and secure environment.

These short stays can also be a great opportunity to trial the services and environment of a Residential home, if a full time move is being considered.  The socialness of joining in activities and chatting to the other residents and staff is often the thing people enjoy the most from their stay.

Respite Care for people living with Dementia can also be beneficial when it is in a specialist dementia care home like Langham Court.  With the reassurance the person living with dementia’s needs will be taken care of, gives carers peace of mind to have a break whilst the stimulation of taking part in activities created with individual abilities and needs in mind can be a positive experience for those living with dementia

Residential care

 

Who pays for respite care?

Where respite care can’t be fully funded within the family, there is funding available for respite care and local councils will complete an assessment of both your individual living and financial circumstances.   This will be completed as a carer’s assessment and a needs assessment for the person who needs the care.

The Huntington & Langham approach to respite care

Whether recovering from an operation, injury or medical condition, or if you’re a carer and need somewhere safe for your loved one to stay while you take some time for yourself, our respite care is second to none and comes part and parcel with complete peace of mind.

We create a personalised care plan before any stay so that you and your loved ones can relax, knowing we’re providing specialist support in a comfortable home from home.   We often find people settle into the home very quickly and extend their stay.

“I don’t think you could find many Huntington’s. It’s extremely well run. Different people get different things. I love it! I came for two weeks and have stayed for months. It’s the attitude you just couldn’t fault. They have been very understanding to me as a smoker as so many places don’t these days. AND they’ve let me have my dog Woolly – they had a vote on it and then Maggie said “Woolly is welcome!” Respite Resident at Huntington House

You’ll be welcomed into the family and are encouraged to make the most of all that we have to offer here, such as an exciting activities programme, freshly-cooked meals and beautiful gardens, along with high quality care from our fantastic team.

Huntington House is a leading accredited Level One Dragonfly Residential Home.  In our recent audit we received an Excellent rating from the team at Meaningful Care Matters, who described our care as:

“A highly engaged service with a high value on meaningful moments and a true person-centred philosophy, which is congruent in look, sound and feel as well as with regulatory compliance requirements. People’s individuality and expression is evident, and people can express that freedom and be themselves.

MCM Dragonfly Care

Our Home Maker team have a great mix of different skills and interests which helps offer variety in the day; with some residents enjoying the more structured activities such as quizzes whilst others value time with the team who are great at offering more 1-to-1 time and conversations.

How can I organise Respite Care?

If you, as a caregiver, need some time out, or you feel your loved one might benefit from a change of scenery, our respite and daycare services could be ideal for you.

We encourage anyone thinking of Respite care to come and visit us to take a tour of the homes and Estate, simply give us a call on 01428 604600 or Email us at huntington@hlestate.co.uk

 

How do you choose the right type of Care Home?

For many people, it is not until you find yourself in the situation where, either a close relative or you need greater support with personal care, that the question “What types of care homes are available?” needs answering.

If you then find yourself overwhelmed with the multiple and varied choices you can have to receiving care and support, you are certainly not alone.

Thankfully there are several independent practical guides and resources online, which we can recommend to explain the options available and provide practical tips on choosing the right type of care.

What is the difference between a care home and a nursing home?

The AgeUK website is a good place to start your research, so you can be clear what the differences are between a care home and a nursing home and how these relate to people living with Dementia.

Age UK offer an overview of the main types of care provision and an independent view of the options available.

  • Care Homes – is the most commonly used phrase when referring to services such as ‘providing personal care, such as washing, dressing, taking medication and going to the toilet. They may also offer social activities such as day trips or outings’.
  • Nursing Homes – (or Care Homes with nursing) ‘provide personal care as well as assistance from qualified nurses. Sometimes called care homes with nursing.’
  • Care Homes with dementia care – ‘designed to make people with dementia feel comfortable and safe’
  • Nursing Homes with Dementia Care – whilst not currently covered by Age UK on their website, this is a specialist category of care for those living with Dementia that we would also include given our experience at Langham Court where we are able to offer our residents bespoke nursing care aligned to their personal needs.

 

How do I choose a Residential Care Home?

Before starting on your journey to creating a shortlist of prospective homes, we would always recommend talking to a professional, such as a GP to help establish the right approach to care needed for yourself or a loved one.

A needs assessment is, however, only part of the process to choosing the right home.   The style of home you select is a very important decision when it comes to making the move into Residential Care of any genre.

There are several national chains of Residential care providers in the UK, many offering a hotel or concierge style experience for residents at their properties.  With smaller regional chains offering their own models of care, by comparison at The Huntington and Langham Estate, as we are a family owned and run home, we are passionate that we offer just that –  a family home from home for all our residents.

Everyone’s approach to how they like to live is personal, which is why we encourage our prospective residents, along with their families to visit us and spend time familiarising themselves in our home.  Quite often it’s the moment people step through the door that they know it’s right.  Just like buying a new house, it’s the location, outlook, decoration, and layout which create those first impressions.

With so many properties and models of care available, Carehome.co.uk is a good source of information, offering a comprehensive directory of over 17,000 homes across the UK.  Their website makes it easy to search by location and type of care.   Featuring reviews and awards, also offering comprehensive details of each property and a rating for comparison.

 

What makes a good Care Home or Nursing Home?

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) are the main regulatory body of all health and social care providers the nation over.

Carrying out inspections of all properties they are a good source of information about the standard of care you should expect to receive, rating the 5 set categories of: Safe / Effective / Caring / Responsive and Well-led.

We go beyond these categories to focus on a person centred care approach, partnering with Meaningful Care Matters to provide a meaningful experience for our residents everyday allowing them to be “Free To Be Me” each and every day.  All of our team are conscious of doing the right thing “in the moment” for our residents, rather than be constrained by schedules or processes.

Adopting the Butterfly and Dragonfly approaches to care, we believe we are able to improve the quality of life and lived experiences for all in our care.

 

What are the options to fund care homes or self-funding your long term care?

3 useful links to begin your research into the funding of care are listed below.  Talking to a local solicitor or accountant can also be a good source of information as they will often be supporting others take the most effective approach to funding care.

We would also be happy to share our knowledge of options for funding for anyone considering becoming a resident at The H&L Estate.

 

We are here to help you make the right choices

Whilst choosing the right care home or nursing home can seem daunting, with lots of things to be taken into consideration, there is lots of help available and a willingness to help.  After all we are all #GladToCare.

Please do get in touch with us if you would like to visit The Huntington & Langham Estate, the kettle is always on!

How to Choose the Right Dementia Care Home for your Loved One

When the difficult decision of moving your loved one into a dementia care home has to be made, it can be very challenging for all involved. Family members can often feel guilty from passing on the care of loved ones to someone else. It is therefore crucial that the home you do choose is the right one.

Further challenges are brought into consideration when your loved one is living with dementia. There is often extra confusion and greater difficulty in explaining to your loved one why they will have to leave their home.

Luckily, our team at the Huntington and Langham Estate in Hindhead, Surrey have over 40 years of experience when it comes to this matter. And we will work with you to ensure a smooth transition into our care environment. Our home at Langham Court embraces our motto and we will do everything we can to support you, so all you have to do is “let our family look after yours’.

The Butterfly Model of care we embrace takes a very person-centric focus, putting your loved one’s emotional and physical needs at the forefront of everything we do.

Below are some of the considerations we suggest you bare in mind when choosing the right dementia care home for your loved one.

Involving all those who care is key

The move into a care home can be a very daunting prospect for all family members. From the person in question, to their primary caregiver, be it a daughter, son or other family member, to the more external members of your family who may be providing support and love from slightly further afar.

It is important to ensure that everyone feels involved in the decision making process, even if that just means communicating with them in a more in-depth manner about the steps along the way.

Easing those feelings of guilt that we have often seen families struck with can be quite challenging, however our team is here to help at every step of the way. Third party bodies and charities can also provide support at this stage, such as Dementia UK who offer free impartial advice and support to all family members in scenarios just like this.

When is the right time to move into a care home?

Finding the right time to move into a care home is never easy. Is it too soon? Is my loved one emotionally ready to move? Will there be ramifications if you leave it too late? These are all very important questions that you need to consult your family/caregiving circle on.

The need to move into a care home could have arisen from a number of reasons; deterioration of their condition, resulting in it being harder for them to live independently, a change in circumstance meaning the primary caregiver is no longer able to commit as much time into looking after their loved one, there could be many reasons, and many combinations of reasons for seeking a dementia care home for your family member. Regardless of the ‘whys’ and the ‘whens’, it is still a difficult decision for anyone to have to make.

From our experience, considering the move into a care home should be thought of as far in advance as possible. And often, we have found that if your loved one moves before their condition has deteriorated too greatly, it makes the move that much easier. It could start with a day or two, visiting the home, an introduction via respite care or daycare, or just a quick chat on the phone with one of the Huntington and Langham team to find out a little more. 

How to find the right care home

Once you’ve decided that moving into a care home is the next stage for your loved one living with dementia, and all family members are onboard with the transition, the next step is to begin the search for the right home.

Again, third party resources such as Age UK are fantastic for providing impartial advice. They have a plethora of guides on a range of issues and  provide excellent information and insight into selecting a home, along with a handy checklist you can download and use too.

The Care Quality Commission is an independent regulator of health and social care in England. They register, monitor and regularly audit homes up and down the country to provide an easy to understand rating. We are completely transparent, and proud of our ‘GOOD’ rating, received in August 2019. You can view the CQC report for Langham Court here.

At the Huntington and Langham Estate in Surrey, we embrace the more homely aspects at our care home. We want to create an environment where you feel as comfortable as you would in your current home. Our home was built by family, for families and we very much want to extend ours to yours for anyone joining us on the estate.

If you’d like to learn a little bit more about what we do, just drop us a line here, or learn more about our dementia care offering here

Dementia friendly activities for you and your loved one

As a progressive condition, over time dementia can reduce a person’s ability to engage in mentally stimulating tasks. Although this is, in part, a result of the brain’s inability to retain information, it can be frustrating for the individual to come to terms with. There are, however, activities that you can engage in with your loved one that are less mentally challenging, instead stimulating internal feelings and senses that can work equally well to promote feelings of satisfaction and achievement.

 

Activities you engage in with your loved one should, ideally, encourage them to reflect on their life, promote emotional connections and help to prevent feelings of anxiety and depression.

 

Physical activity

One of the simplest yet effective ways to improve mental wellbeing is by engaging in gentle exercise. Encourage your loved one to take regular strolls around the local neighbourhood or try out a new practise, such as yoga. These can really help to clear the mind, not only promoting feelings of positivity but also making daily challenges that little bit easier to cope with.

 

Water aerobics or swimming are also great activities to try, with some fitness centres offering sessions designed specifically for those with limited cognitive abilities.

 

Cooking and/or baking

Working to stimulate the senses, cooking and baking allow us to use our senses of smell and taste, activating different areas of the brain. Not only does cooking allow the individual to bring a recipe to life, but you also have something tangible – and edible – to enjoy at the end.

 

If your loved one is struggling to follow a recipe, try taking the reins, feeding them the instructions slowly. It also might be a good idea for you to take on the more difficult tasks, allowing your loved one to enjoy the more simple, fun aspects of cooking.

 

Exploring your surrounding nature

As humans, we’re instinctively attracted to nature and, of course, there is a reason for this. We naturally thrive in the outdoors and the mere intake of fresh air, as well as the scent of foliage can stimulate feelings of peace, restoring internal equilibrium. There are numerous ways you can encourage your loved one to connect with nature – whether that’s simply taking a stroll through a botanical garden, surrounding them with wildlife or doing some gardening.

 

Arts and crafts

Encouraging your loved one to pick up a paintbrush can really help to unleash their creativity. Engaging in arts and crafts can help them to develop their fine motor skills and they might even pick up a new hobby. If your loved one doesn’t enjoy painting, try and persuade them to take up knitting or drawing.

 

Animal therapy

Being surrounded by animals has been shown to reduce feelings of stress and anxiety, promoting mental wellbeing and the production of feel-good hormones. If you don’t own a pet yourself, try asking a friend to bring their furry companion to your home, or take your loved one to a local farm to spend time with small animals. Alternatively, you could undertake some research into local animal therapy services.

 

Just because your loved one is suffering with dementia doesn’t mean they have to miss out on fun activities that you can enjoy together. At the Huntington and Langham Estate, we like to make activities an integral part of daily life. To find out more about our care, click here.