As the years pass, another generation is stepping into the sunset of their lives. Our seniors have worked tirelessly to give us our best life, one filled with comfort, opportunities, and leisure. In their hoary head days, it is our responsibility (and privilege) to take care of their needs.
This is not just a matter of kindness and polite manners, but a moral obligation. However, the sad reality is the declining physical and mental health of older adults. By 2030, at least 1.4 billion people will be aged 60 or above.
The World Health Organization found that nearly 14% of seniors live with some sort of mental disorder. Even so, the two most common conditions prevalent in this demographic are anxiety and depression. It could be a result of many factors, including social isolation, staying away from family for extended periods, declining health and mobility, loss of a spouse, etc.
It’s time for the younger generations to come together and give the elderly their due honor. A considerable aspect of it involves making wise health decisions on their behalf. In this article, we will focus on that. Let’s dive into understanding six simple ways in which you can honor older adults from a health viewpoint.
It is natural to have several routine medications that one must consume in their old age. This is because health conditions like high blood pressure, diabetes, arthritis, etc. are common among the elderly (and need proper management).
As a caregiver, you should keep a tab on your senior’s medicine cabinet. Review their medications periodically to see if they’re running out of stock. If possible, have their medications reviewed by a pharmacist or their healthcare provider to check if everything is up-to-date.
Make a personal note of their medicines and their timings. Encourage them to take their prescription drugs on time (even after they’re feeling better). Taking medicines at the right time is crucial to successful disease management. Also, if you find them falling short of funds for medicines, offer to purchase them on their behalf.
Here are some essential things to monitor –
- See that your senior does not consume half doses or skip them altogether to save money.
- Do not let them double up on a dose because they missed it. Create helpful reminders to keep them on track.
- Encourage them to get off their medication only with the doctor’s permission.
- See to it that they do not end up consuming the incorrect drug or someone else’s medicine by mistake.
With age comes frailty and the gradual inability to perform certain tasks. Your senior may be flexible and healthy enough to move about but may find it challenging to clean up after themselves, prepare meals, drive a car, etc.
If such is the case, you can opt for in-home senior care services. Always Best Care Senior Services states that in-home services can be tailored to the older adult’s needs. This way, they can maintain a safe yet independent and dignified lifestyle.
Care arrangements at home are a great option, even from the viewpoint of social inclusion and personal choice. You must always discuss these options with your senior before concluding. In most cases, seniors do not wish to leave their homes.
This may be especially true for those who’ve spent their lives amidst the lush beauty of green cities like Greensboro. It is ranked among the top 20 greenest cities in America and offers its residents a peaceful countryside life among nature.
It’s highly unlikely that a senior would want to leave their serene life and home in such a city. The best option would be to choose home care services in Greensboro. The reasons may be umpteen and personal, which is why the senior’s preference must be considered.
If you’ve opted for home care services, the care team will prepare a healthy meal plan for the older adult(s) (provided you’ve opted for meal planning and preparation services). If not, you must ensure you feed your seniors nutritious meals as their caregiver.
This should ideally begin with taking into account any specific dietary restrictions they might have. Consult with your senior’s healthcare provider once again if you wish to know the latest stats on their health.
If your older adult is fairly healthy and can move about freely, give them meals any health-conscious adult would prefer. These may include (but are not limited to) oatmeal topped with nuts, seeds, and fruits, avocado bruschetta, breakfast smoothies, roasted root vegetables, healthy casseroles, chicken salads and soups, and even whole grain crust pizzas.
Never force them to eat more than they’re able to. Switching meals up now and then and making the plate as colorful as possible can encourage them to dive in.
As limbs grow weak and wobbly with old age, it is natural to find excuses to slow down. However, regular exercise is as important for seniors as it is for any other demographic. It prolongs the vitality in their limbs and acts as the oiling for a machine (human body), thereby improving the quality of life.
Regardless of your senior’s current fitness level, encourage them to participate in mild activity every day. Tai Chi is a low-impact exercise that can keep the body in motion. You can book them for a class and, better yet, learn alongside them.
Alternatively, go for a walk in the guise of exploring the outdoors and have them tag along. There’s quite nothing as refreshing and healing as the combination of exercise and forest bathing. Even something as simple as pushing the lawn mower can provide older adults the momentum their limbs need to stay healthy.
Social isolation is one of the major reasons behind senior depression and anxiety. As long as they’re able to move around, let your seniors enjoy a vibrant social life. This should just come naturally across towns like Virginia’s Herndon.
With plenty of scope for recreation, parks, museums, etc., it is a great place to spend post-retirement years. If yours is a life-loving playful senior, they will find some new adventure every day. This is where home care services in Herndon become helpful.
You can run your errands and take care of other important life matters whilst your senior enjoys a day around town with their care team members. On weekends or days when you get the time, have the entire family join the fun. This will seldom (if ever) make your senior feel isolated. The skip in their step will keep their heart young and healthy.
Aging people have special needs in their daily lives. This means their living area must be rearranged to accommodate those needs. To help them reclaim their independence, consider changing things a bit to make the living space more senior-friendly. This would include –
- Removing clutter and any obstacles that the older adult may bump into. Allow them plenty of space to move about freely.
- Placing anti-slip or non-skid mats, especially on slippery areas. If possible, you can go a step further and have anti-slip flooring installed for your senior to move more freely.
- Checking regularly that all lights are functional, especially those installed in bathrooms and staircases.
- Providing your senior with plenty of hand support. In other words, install grab benches and bars near bathrooms, kitchens, etc.
As we draw to a close, let’s mention something that becomes more elusive with age – good sleep. Uninterrupted sleep for those aged 60 or above becomes a luxury. Many seniors suffer from sleep problems like insomnia and sleep apnea. This increases the risk of daytime fatigue and falling.
You can help them get their beauty rest. For instance – keep their space cool and dark around bedtime. Consider investing in a mattress that is exclusively designed for older adults.
It will help soothe their aches and pains, providing deep restful sleep. Finally, eliminate disturbances and help them have early supper so digestion does not interfere with rest.