Depression is common in older adults, but the condition is sometimes preventable. You should develop a healthy routine for your senior loved one that includes nutritious meals, purposeful activities, exercise, and excellent self-care. Continue reading to learn what your parent can do to prevent depression in the senior years.
1. Get Plenty of Rest
Lack of sleep prevents the brain from removing dangerous toxins that affect mental and emotional health. Therefore, your parent should get at least eight hours of rest each night. Help your loved one find ways to prevent restlessness, such as removing background noises and bright lights while he or she is asleep. Good sleeping habits can lead to robust mental health for older adults.
2. Talk About Ways to Manage Loss
Losing a spouse, sibling, or close friend is difficult for anyone, especially a senior. These types of losses could cause seniors to stress about the end of their own lives instead of enjoying their golden years. You need to talk about loss with your loved one and help him or her develop strategies to deal with his or her emotions. For example, having annual gatherings in honor of siblings or close friends who have passed away could provide something meaningful to look forward to and lower your loved one’s anxiety levels.
Seniors who are depressed and lonely can benefit from having a compassionate professional caregiver to share their feelings with. For families living in Fort Myers, 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.
3. Remain Independent
Watching his or her cognitive and physical skills decrease could affect your loved one’s quality of life and increase the odds of depression. Promote independence by finding respectful ways to simplify your parent’s daily activities. Encouraging your loved one to take on tasks without any assistance could boost his or her mood and stave off depression.
4. Avoid Sugary Foods
Sugar is an addictive carbohydrate seniors often crave despite the negative impact it has on mood as well as physical and cognitive skills. If your loved one doesn’t limit his or her sugar intake, he or she could lose control and consume too many products that contain sugar, such as cookies, cakes, candies, and various beverages. The carbohydrates raise the risk of inflammation, which causes metabolism to decrease and leads to mental issues such as anger, sadness, and depression.
Seniors who want to remain healthy as they age can benefit in a variety of ways when they receive professional senior care. Fort Myers, FL, Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one accomplish daily tasks, prevent illness, and focus on living a healthier and more fulfilling life.
5. Take Up Hobbies
Too much idle time is bad for mental health. Finding fun ways for your loved one to spend his or her days could enhance his or her self-esteem and provide more confidence. Some of the best hobbies for older adults include volunteering, doing arts and crafts, gardening, and cooking. While it’s okay to suggest activities, you must allow your loved one to choose what makes him or her happy instead of only doing things you like.
6. Stay Physically Active
Exercise works out the body and the mind. Encourage your parent to maintain a regular exercise routine. When doing exercises that boost bone health, the body produces endorphins, which combat cortisol and other stress hormones. As a result, the exercises can lower anxiety levels and stave off depression.
Elder care agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Home Care Assistance, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. We offer a revolutionary program called the Balanced Care Method, which encourages seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy. We will work with you to create a customized home care plan that’s suited for your loved one’s unique needs. Call the Home Care Assistance team at 239.449.4701 today.