6 Ways to Boost an Older Adult’s Emotional Wellbeing

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Tips to Boost an Older Adult’s Emotional Wellbeing in Des Moines, IA

Emotional wellbeing helps seniors face age-related challenges with a positive outlook, equanimity, and self-esteem. The feeling of emotional wellness also lessens anxiety, loneliness, depression, boredom, and stress. Here are a few ways you can boost your senior loved one’s emotional health and wellbeing. 

1. Focus on Grooming & Physical Appearance

You can offset the negative effects of aging by enhancing your loved one’s looks. Make sure your parent’s clothing is attractive and fits well. Your mother might enjoy periodic hair styling and manicures, while your father might like a few classy hats. Nutritious food and adequate hydration can also help your loved one look his or her best. If exercise is feasible, encourage doing a fun and safe physical activity three times weekly. Consider hiring a caregiver if your loved one needs assistance with grooming, cleaning, exercising, and managing other daily tasks. Although it may be challenging to find reliable, highly rated home care, you can turn to Home Care Assistance. Our respite and live-in caregivers are expertly trained to assist seniors with a wide array of important tasks, including cooking, bathing, light housekeeping, and exercise.

2. Allow Freedom to Make Decisions

If your loved one shows good judgment, honor his or her preferences for what to wear, eat, and do on a daily basis. Making choices asserts independence and gives seniors some control over their lives. When decisions won’t jeopardize health, let your loved one explore his or her options.

3. Provide Opportunities for Socialization

Even seniors who tend to be loners need to connect with people. Otherwise, lack of interaction can speed up cognitive decline. Friendly communication is mentally stimulating and emotionally uplifting, and it also affirms individuality and social acceptance.  To keep your loved one involved with others, schedule visits with friends and family. Program contacts into your parent’s cell phone so touching base is just a speed dial away. Ask children in the family to make cards for your loved one. To remain close to long-distance relatives, you can subscribe to a video call service such as FaceTime or Skype.  Whenever possible, include your loved one in family gatherings. Arrange for transportation to community events such as religious services and library programs. Some senior centers provide transportation services to and from members’ homes.  For families living in Des Moines, 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.

4. Encourage Purposeful Tasks

Feeling useful can help your loved one maintain motivation and prevent depression. Consider getting a pet for your loved one. Cats and dogs typically need human affection, which your loved one can provide.  If your loved one is adept at horticulture, give him or her plants to tend. Easy-to-grow houseplants include Chinese evergreen, golden pothos, African violet, peperomia, and philodendron. Potted herbs can easily grow on the windowsill.  Another purposeful hobby is needlework, such as knitting, crocheting, sewing, and quilting. Perhaps your loved one can do some household tasks like folding laundry, helping with cooking, or taking out trash. Other meaningful options are tutoring a student or volunteering at a library, church, or hospital.

5. Provide Mentally Stimulating Activities

An active mind fosters a zest for living. Mental stimulation also strengthens memory and boosts creativity. By reading, your loved one can expand his or her vocabulary and ability to communicate. If your loved one has impaired vision, borrow large-print books from the library. By joining a book club, your loved one can benefit from both reading and socializing. At a senior center, your loved one can play games and take classes. At home, supply him or her with word searches, jigsaw puzzles, and crosswords. Invite people over to play cards and board games. Strategic planning can increase focus, analytical thinking, and problem-solving skills. Playing number games sharpens logic and math skills.

6. Reflect on Happy Memories

Reflecting on past achievements and memorable occasions confirms life has value. Go through photo albums with your loved one or compile new ones. Collaborate on making a scrapbook, a legacy your family will treasure. You can also videotape interviews with your loved one. At family gatherings, invite your loved one to tell stories about childhood or dating his or her spouse. Ask your loved one to share things for which he or she is grateful. Whether your loved one needs regular mental and social stimulation or assistance with daily tasks, a professional caregiver can help. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of at-home care. Des Moines 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 stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia. If you need hourly or live-in care, give us a call at (515) 264-2438 today. 


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