Join CMSS for our 2024 Fall Benefit

Thursday, September 12, 2024

2024 Spring Activities with the Hartwell Place Community

This spring at Hartwell Place has been full of fun activities and outings. In February, Hartwell Place residents and team members took a trip to the Art Institute of Chicago. One of the best parts about being in Chicago is taking advantage of the museums and cultural institutions across our beautiful city.        […]

Volunteer Highlight: Hartwell Place

Two children sit on floor listening to story time. Adults and seniors are seated behind them.

Volunteers make our work possible at CMSS. We are grateful to all the people who dedicate their time to helping older adults live happier, healthier lives.

CARES Memory Care Training for Families

Image of two women smiling at each other.

CMSS is thrilled to offer our community complimentary access to CARES® Dementia Training for families. This program will help you reduce stress and feel confident in caring for your loved one.

Bringing Art to Life – Art-Based Memory Program

Since 2016, CMSS has partnered with Bringing Art to Life, a program founded by Dr. Daniel C Potts in Alabama where it found success before beginning its first and only out-of-state location, here in Chicago with us. BATL is an intergenerational art therapy and life story preservation program for persons with Alzheimer’s disease and other […]

Reimagining Brain Health Care in the U.S.

A CG illustration of the human brain and active synapses.

Alzheimer’s disease was discovered in 1906. Over 110 years later, researchers, scientists, caregivers and advocates are still looking for ways to combat it. A new report may have found a  way to significantly reduce the likelihood of getting the disease and other dementias. Dr. Neelum T. Aggarwal, MD, a cognitive neurologist at the Rush Alzheimer’s […]

Sounds of Healing Series: How Playing Music Impacts Memory and Mood for Older Adults

A woman listens to music on her headphones as part of a music therapy memory program

Have you ever strummed a guitar, played a piano or sang a melody? Most people have. But you may not have realized playing music was changing your brain and impacting your memory. At Chicago Methodist Senior Services, here’s how playing music influences older adults’ memory and mood. How playing music improves memory for older adults […]

Urban Sensory Garden Finds its Roots at CMSS

Urban Sensory Garden

A garden can be transformative for your mood: they’re tranquil, therapeutic, and can often feel like an outdoor home. In metropolitan areas, however, gardens can be few and far between. Some older adults may find it difficult to access gardens, too, meaning they’re unable to reap the benefits of planting, harvesting, and enjoying nature. That’s […]

Sounds of Healing Series: Does Music Therapy Work?

A pair of hands plays on a Washburn piano as part of a music therapy program

When people think of healing, they often think of visiting a doctor and taking a prescribed medication. But healing doesn’t always come from a routine appointment at the doctor — it can be found in many forms, including music. Everyone can relate to feeling blue until you hear a song that turns your whole day […]

Early Signs and Symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease: What You Need To Know

Two women sit at a table, working together on a coloring project inside an arts and crafts room.

The early signs and symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease can look a little different for everyone, and they often include more than memory loss. When you can recognize these symptoms, you can better support your loved one and help make their experience as positive as possible. If you think someone close to you may be experiencing […]

How Advanced Memory Care Can Help Your Loved One

Two women that part of an advanced memory care community, visit a local farmers market

Most memory care options are licensed as assisted living communities, meaning people who live there typically have mid-stage memory loss. An advanced memory care community provides more specialized support. This type of community is right for people with more advanced memory loss, or people who are living with mid-stage memory loss and have other significant […]

VR Gives Caregivers First-Hand Experience of Memory Loss

Chicago Methodist Senior Services logo

Our work with virtual reality organization Embodied Labs was recently featured in an article in HealthiAR. CMSS staff has fortune to work with Embodied Labs’ innovative VR technology to learn how staff and caregivers can better care for people with memory loss. Read more about how this training will impact staff, caregivers and residents here.

Memory Care Services: Three Things To Look For

Older woman and CMSS staff member complete an art project as part of CMSS's memory care services

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When Memory Care is Needed: What to Look For

cmss staff member and older man read a book about when memory care is needed

When Memory Care Is Needed… What to Look For When someone you love is living with memory loss, it can be hard to pinpoint exactly when memory care is needed. It’s possible for many people with memory loss to live well at home with a family caregiver for a long time. But memory care is […]

Memory Loss Therapy: Helping People Through Art Therapy

an older woman and a CMSS staff member work on an art project, a common form of memory loss therapy

Art therapy can be very beneficial for older adults who have memory loss or difficulties communicating. Memory loss therapy, led by an art therapist, can include drawing, painting, sculpture or other forms of visual art. Jenn Ross, an art therapist at Chicago Methodist Senior Services, notes that art therapy often helps to reduce anxiety and […]

Alzheimer’s Prevention and Risk Factors

An older woman and CMSS staff member discuss Alzheimer's Prevention

Today 5.5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s. Since 2000, death rates from other major diseases have dropped, while those from Alzheimer’s have risen by 89 percent. Alzheimer’s prevention is a critical area of research, as scientists strive to learn how much we can impact Alzheimer’s risk. Alzheimer’s results from multiple interacting factors, including age, […]

What Is Memory Care?

an older woman and a CMSS staff member with memory games for older adults

When memory loss becomes a part of your life, you deserve care that’s about you, not just your diagnosis. What is memory care? It’s care tailored to the unique needs of people with memory loss, and can be a part of or provided through home care, assisted living or skilled nursing care. What is memory […]

Changing the Stigmas Around Memory Loss

Woman speaking with man about stigmas around memory loss

People living with memory loss often encounter challenges when it comes to caregiving and health concerns, but facing stigmas around memory loss shouldn’t be one of them. Unfortunately, negative labels and misunderstandings are more common than they should be. Simply put, a stigma is the result of misconception and a lack of awareness, but it’s […]

Five Ways to Help Those with Memory Problems Cope During the Holidays

plush snowmen

The excitement of the holiday season can become stressful for anyone: from shopping for gifts and cooking lavish meals, to organizing get togethers and traveling, it’s easy to become overwhelmed during the holiday season. For those with memory problems, the holidays can be difficult to keep up with. If you’ll be spending time with a […]

Can Sleep Deprivation Cause Alzheimers

a woman points toward to a scan on a computer while standing next to her doctor

(AP photo) The physical and psychological benefits of getting a good night’s sleep have been well documented. Regular sleep has been shown to help fight stress, premature aging, weight gain, depression and more. The list truly goes on and on. Most experts already agree that a healthy sleeping pattern improves thinking skills and decision-making, but […]

Working Memory. Memory Working.

As we age, or for those of us who develop degenerative brain diseases, keeping more than a couple things in our minds at the same time can be problematic. Don’t get too discouraged just yet, because working memory is something that can be improved with effort.

Handling Dementia with Teenagers at Home

Surviving the teenage years of children can be hard enough on a parent; throw in a spouse with dementia and you’ve got yourself a pot of boiling stress and anxiety for a caregiver.