Even if your senior loved one didn’t lead a healthy lifestyle earlier in life, it’s not too late to take steps to boost his or her health. Even minor changes can have significant physical and psychological benefits. Here are a few steps your loved one can take today to make an immediate impact on his or her health.
1. Get a Colonoscopy
Colon cancer is highly treatable if caught early. Colonoscopy is performed under sedation, so your loved one may not feel pain. If the doctor notices anything suspicious, it can be removed and biopsied immediately to determine if it’s cancerous.
2. Pay Attention to Oral Health
Poor oral hygiene leads to the development of plaque, which contains high levels of bacteria. These bacteria can enter the bloodstream and increase the risk of stroke, heart disease, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s disease. Encourage your loved one to brush and floss regularly and see a dentist at least twice a year. Seniors who wear dentures need to clean their gums and dentures regularly and see their dentists to rule out other oral health issues.
Seniors can face a variety of challenges as they age, many of which can be mitigated with the help of professional in-home caregivers who provide high-quality senior home care. Trust Home Care Assistance to help your elderly loved one age in place safely and comfortably.
3. Start Moving
According to a study in the medical journal The Lancet, even 15 minutes of exercise a day can add as much as three years to a person’s life. Something as simple as walking around the block or doing chair-based exercises can enhance cardiovascular health, increase joint flexibility, and prevent excess weight gain. Physical activity also releases neurotransmitters that boost mood. Your loved one should consult his or her doctor before starting an exercise regimen.
A home caregiver can help your loved one exercise safely. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of home care. Edmonton families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet their elderly loved ones’ unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can boost cognitive health and delay the onset of dementia.
4. Get a Good Night’s Sleep
Seniors often have difficulty sleeping because of various medical conditions and changes in their circadian rhythms. Chronic sleep deprivation has been linked to memory issues, mood swings, high blood pressure, and obesity. Encourage your loved one to make sleep a priority and adopt good sleep hygiene practices, such as going to bed and getting up at regular times, avoiding electronics in the bedroom, and having a consistent bedtime ritual.
5. Develop Friendships
People who stay socially engaged and have healthy relationships tend to live longer, happier lives. Having close relationships helps seniors relieve stress and anxiety. Friends can provide physical and emotional support in times of need, which can alleviate depression and promote faster healing during illnesses. Regular conversation and interactions are also a valuable source of mental stimulation.
For families living in Edmonton, respite care can be a wonderful solution when their aging loved ones need companionship and socialization a few hours a week or just need minor assistance with daily household tasks. At Home Care Assistance, we thrive on helping seniors maintain their independence while living in the comfort of home. If you need professional care for your loved one, reach out to one of our Care Managers today at (780) 490-7337.