A person’s health is greatly influenced by their lifestyle, their genetics, their environment, and a range of daily choices they make that influence their body and mind. September is Healthy Aging Month, where health professionals and senior organizations focus on a way that elderly adults can participate in boosting their own health and wellness.
Family caregivers that look after an elderly relative can also learn ways they can support their loved one in making healthy choices. For seniors that struggle to take care of themselves and live independently, families can hire a home health care provider to aid and support.
Here are 5 ways that family caregivers can help an aging relative maximize their physical and mental well-being.
1. Get an Annual Physical
Set up an appointment with a loved one’s primary care doctor for an annual physical, even if there are no immediate concerns about their health. Together, go over the list of prescription medication the elderly adult is taking and discuss any new findings about their health. Get references to specialists when appropriate and ask questions about anything unclear.
2. Incorporate Physical Activity
Seniors often ignore exercise and activity due to physical limitations, chronic pain and good old procrastination. However, to have the healthiest body possible as they grow older, elderly adults should get active. Instead of traditional exercises like jogging or lifting weights, seniors can do tai chi, walking, swimming, chair aerobics and yoga. The home health care provider can offer encouragement and motivation to get the elderly adult up and moving regularly.
3. Focus on Healthy Food
Even if an elderly adult has some dietary restrictions, they can still eat nutrient-dense meals and snacks. Seniors should avoid highly processed, sweet or salty ingredients and focus on vegetables, fruits, whole grains and lean protein. They should follow the recommendation of their doctor or dietician as well if they have health issues that relate to food, such as diabetes, Crohn’s disease or colitis. Make sure the home health care provider that prepares meals is aware of the new focus on healthy food.
4. Exercise the Brain
Cognitive decline is common with age, but elderly adults can delay or even avoid it by engaging in mental stimulation. Anything new that challenges the brain will do, such as learning a new language, reading books, completing puzzles and crosswords, listening to talks and lectures and even taking an online class.
5. Stay Social
Too many elderly adults live alone and don’t socialize much, which leads to isolation, loneliness, anxiety and depression. It’s also not safe for them, especially if they struggle to care for themselves. A home health care provider can be present as often as needed and can also facilitate other social connections for the senior. Family members and home health care providers should schedule the senior’s time, so they can visit with family and friends, attend events and interact outside the home.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Home Health Care Services in Amelia Island FL, please contact the caring staff at Home-Call Healthcare. Call today 904-861-0424.