The word “self-care” has been very popular among the youths in this era. Self-care refers to the ability to preserve and even improve one’s health condition. It is rarely talked about among adults older than 65 year olds. However, they are more susceptible to illnesses and diseases like diabetes and heart conditions. In 2014, about five million adults who are above 65 years old have dementia. Dementia is one of the most common illnesses among older adults. Scientists claim that this urge in dementia cases is due to the aging population all around the world. Additionally, those with obesity and diabetes are more likely to have dementia. It becomes much more severe as the pandemic has caused many older adults to stay at home more frequently to avoid any close contact with other people. A study from the United Kingdom examines 460,000 people that were around 57 year old throughout the pandemic. It revealed that 5,000 respondents who were socially isolated developed dementia. Social isolation caused a 26% increase of risk in developing dementia. As such, there should be a larger emphasis on self-care in senior years. Our well-being when we are older is as important as our well-being when we were younger. Here are some tips for self-care in our senior years!
Protecting and keeping our mental state healthy is as important as keeping our physical body healthy. Many older adults experience high levels of loneliness and depression as they are often isolated from society. Loneliness harms their mental health. Research shows that social isolation can cause health risks that are as detrimental as smoking 15 cigarettes every day. Additionally, it was revealed that loneliness can cause double the harm on both the physical and mental health as obesity harms the body. One possible way to combat loneliness is through a community group that provides engagement and interactions which will create positive mental health impacts and reduce levels of loneliness and depression. Research has found that older adults who are part of a community or interest group have lower risk of death. This is because these groups create a sense of purpose and belonging that gives the individual a will to live. Their quality of life becomes better because they are much happier. To preserve their mental strength and capabilities, they can choose to participate in memory care programs that have been very beneficial for older adults.
To keep their physical body healthy, it is important to exercise regularly and eat well. Sometimes it is difficult to motivate them to leave the house to exercise but as their loved ones who want the best for them, we can try to accompany them through these activities. Your presence there would motivate them to consistently walk and exercise. It would be a good bonding activity among the family members. This reduces levels of loneliness and isolation. Keeping our physical body healthy also keeps our mind healthy. Exercising releases endorphins that makes us less stressed and happier. As such, we have to encourage our loved ones to be more active so that their quality of life can be better.