By Guest Blogger, Diana S,
5 Ways to Improve the Quality of Life for Seniors
With the passing of years, many seniors’ quality of life declines. They socialize less, their health often deteriorates and they lose their positivity and optimism. However, it doesn’t have to be this way. By taking care of their physical and mental health, as well as seeing to their other needs, their life quality can be significantly improved, and here are some ways how.
Remind them they’re loved, useful and needed
In big, urban areas such as Sydney, moving to a different part of the city could easily mean that you can’t make it to visit your parents or other elderly relatives as often as you’d like. This can make them feel neglected and forgotten. Don’t allow this to happen. Even if you can’t be with them in person every day, you can still find ten minutes to call them and ask how they are or tell them about your day. This way, they’ll know you’re thinking of them and love them. Also, if they live in your household, always give them tasks to do so that they feel useful, rather than feeling like a burden. Ask them to fold the clean laundry or to make the shopping list. They can also help by taking care of your kids once in a while, or simply walking to the newsagent’s to get the newspaper.
Deal with their depression
Several million people over the age of 65 suffer from depression. It can be triggered by certain stressful life events like losing their spouse or retiring, but also by losing their sense of purpose or being unable to take care of themselves. You don’t have to wait to notice the symptoms of depression. Instead, after these life-changing events, suggest that your elders visit a therapist or a psychologist preventively. However, if you do notice symptoms of depression, react straight away and get them treated.
Get them to socialize
Company and communication can have a vital effect on seniors’ health, so encourage them to spend as much time as they can with family, friends and neighbors they like. Hint that they could use social networks to get in touch with some of their old friends from university, school or their hometown. They can even organize tea parties, movie- or game nights. They should also try expanding their circle of friends through volunteering or going to various community events. Another option for them is to move to a retirement home, such as the award-winning Mark Moran Little Bay. Choosing this type of home for your seniors will provide them with around-the-clock medical care, while also tending to all their other needs, including socialization. They have shared spaces which are perfect for community engagement, which is exactly what everybody needs – being surrounded by people of similar age and interests.
Encourage them to exercise
Regular exercise might add years to a person’s life, and if they remain fit, those years may actually be healthy and pleasant. Physical exercise can increase their vitality, improve their strength and even promote their mental health. It can make them more optimistic and boost their self-esteem. Make sure that your seniors don’t just sit at home, but have them on their feet, walking as much as they can. Something in the line of 10,000 steps a day would be ideal, but if they can’t do that much, anything is better than nothing. It would be even more beneficial if they joined an exercise group, so that they can be surrounded by other people while working on improving their overall health. If they have painful joints, see if there are any exercise groups for seniors at your local swimming pool. Finally, physical activity will help them sleep better, which is crucial in order to keep a sharp mind and have their energy renewed.
Make sure their meals are healthy and meaningful
The food your seniors eat should be rich in nutrients, and not high in calories. Since metabolism slows down with age and the body needs less energy, make sure they eat salmon and other types of fish, as well as leafy greens, which will provide them with nutrients without causing them to gain unnecessary weight. Their meals should be healthy and balanced, but if you notice that they’ve lost their appetite, maybe you could try seasoning the food differently or making the food look nice on the plate. Also, try turning their meals into social events, by eating together as often as possible or by inviting their friends or other family members for dinner whenever you can.
Most elders simply want some of your time, patience and a kind word here and there. So, always be kind, gentle and helpful, and do your best to make their lives worth living.
Tia, and TipsfromTia.com is trying to keep you looking good and
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