At ElderCare 4 Families, we believe each birthday is a blessing. As you get older, there is a new chapter of life to experience and things to see! Always remember, it’s never too late to learn a new skill, meet new friends, or enjoy a new hobby. Seniors are a blessing to their families, as well. Nothing takes the place of hearing life lessons of an older generation, and watching happy grandparents (and great grandparents!) with their grandbabies. This September, we’re celebrating Healthy Aging Month, and we hope you’ll join us!
Aging gracefully can mean different things to everyone. For some, it may mean embracing the changing beauty of your maturing appearance, for others it may mean taking new physical limitations in stride without losing your zest for life. ElderCare 4 Families believes being young at heart can make a huge difference in a person’s quality of life. Even when life presents what seems like an unfair amount of setbacks and health challenges, maintaining a positive attitude is everything!
While growing older can be a wonderful thing to celebrate for so many different reasons, it can also present a tough set of unique challenges and hurdles. For many older people, health concerns and physical difficulties are at the top of this list. But aging doesn’t have to lead to a decline in your overall quality of life. In fact, the senior years are some of the happiest for many people. When you or a loved one needs extra help living at home in your senior years, ElderCare 4 Families is here to support you. We offer caring, non-medical, in-home companion and personal care services throughout Louisville and Southern Indiana.
Doing everything you can to take care of yourself is vital to enjoying life and aging well. That includes asking for help when you need it. Here are a few important things to keep in mind for staying active, healthy, and happy in your senior years.
Senior Eye Health
Never skip eye exams! Many age-related eye conditions and diseases have no early symptoms, yet comprehensive dilated eye exams conducted annually can help detect and even halt some eye disorders. If you are diabetic, this is also an important part of your care, as the disease can lead to blindness if not managed properly. Vision loss is not a normal part of aging, yet there are several eye conditions that are more common in aging adults. These conditions include age-related macular degeneration, cataracts, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, dry eye, and low vision. If you’re looking for more information on eye health, The National Eye Institute is a great place to start.
Relationships with others
Much like a positive attitude, maintaining relationships and contact with others is one of the strongest supporters of both physical and mental health in aging adults. Becoming isolated can be an immense detriment to anyone’s health and wellbeing. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), poor social relationships (characterized by social isolation or loneliness) was associated with a 29 percent increased risk of heart disease and a 32 percent increased risk of stroke.
If your mobility is affected, staying in touch with family and friends through phone and video calls can make a big difference in your outlook on life. If you are mobile and able to get out, take a class, join a book club, or become part of a monthly luncheon club. Do what you can to stay in touch with old friends and make new ones!
Staying physically active
Exercise supports a healthy mind and body, no matter a person’s age. Many aging adults and other people with mobility issues often enjoy things like chair yoga exercises and low-impact water exercise at their local gym. And you don’t need a gym to do chair yoga and many other things to keep your muscles active around the house. Using lightweight dumbbells each day is great for strength and can support bone health, as well. Practicing yoga and tai chi also are wonderful ways to support strength and balance. Even a simple walk around the block everyday can do wonders. Before you get into any exercise routine, be sure to consult your healthcare provider!
Maintain a healthy diet
When you get older, it may seem more difficult than ever to eat a balanced diet on a regular basis. So many factors may contribute to this. Oftentimes, an aging adult may live along after losing a spouse, which often can lead to them not eating enough or not eating healthy foods on a regular basis. Eating a well-balanced diet is an important part of maintaining a healthy weight, staying energized, and getting the nutrients you need. It also lowers your risk of developing many chronic health conditions. Family members often are able to step in to help support their loved one’s health and make sure they have proper meals, which is great. Yet, sometimes people need support to prepare and eat healthy meals on a regular basis. That’s where ElderCare 4 Families can support you or your loved one in eating well-balanced meals. We offer assistance with meal planning and preparation, as well as help with personal care and tasks around the house.
Surround yourself with positivity!
Mental health plays an incredibly important role in aging well, and it’s important to surround yourself with people who are kind and make you smile and laugh! Stay away from negative news as much as you can, and steer clear of things that often lead you to feelings of depression.
Get out there, connect with others, take care of yourself, and enjoy life!