7 Lifestyle Choices that Can Help Seniors Live Longer
By Chris Cruse 9 am on
We all want our senior loved ones to be around as long as possible. While we can’t completely control what age they live to be, we can encourage them to make lifestyle decisions that increase their chances of living long and fulfilling lives. Here are a few measures seniors can take to increase their life expectancy.
1. Flossing Daily
If your loved one doesn’t floss, it’s time to start. Two times a day is ideal, but even once a day can prevent plaque and bacteria from building up in the mouth. These bacteria can cause inflammation, which can spread to other parts of the body and may even cause a heart attack or stroke. If your aging loved one needs help managing everyday tasks or encouragement to adopt healthier lifestyle choices, turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of home care. Des Moines Home Care Assistance provides professional in-home caregivers around the clock to help seniors live longer, happier, and healthier lives.
2. Walking Regularly
Physical activity is one of the best ways to increase longevity, and most seniors don’t realize a simple half-hour walk around the park, neighborhood, or even up and down the driveway can help. Studies have shown that a 30-minute walk a few days a week can reverse up to 10 years of aging, and people who sit for prolonged periods are less likely to live longer.
3. Spending Time with a Pet
Getting a pet can increase longevity in a number of ways. If it’s a dog that requires walking, it encourages physical activity. For seniors who are lonely, having a pet can alleviate depression and give them something to live for. Studies have shown that petting a dog or cat can reduce stress levels and blood pressure.
4. Making New Friends
Seniors who have strong social connections tend to live longer. However, they’re often at risk of being lonely. Their children have started their own lives, perhaps their spouses have passed on, and their friends have often retired and moved away. If this is the case for your loved one, consider setting up some new social connections.An in-home caregiver can provide much-needed social interaction for your loved one. Senior home care professionals can be a wonderful boon to seniors. Whether they require around-the-clock supervision or just need assistance with exercise and household tasks a few days a week, seniors can enjoy a higher quality of life with the help of trusted in-home caregivers.
5. Sleeping Better
Getting a good night’s sleep may prevent diseases that can shorten a senior’s life, like diabetes and Alzheimer’s. Going to bed and waking up at the same time each day is the perfect place to start. Turning your loved one’s bedroom into a sanctuary with comfortable linens, the perfect temperature, and no access to electronic devices can also enhance sleep quality.
6. Staying Positive
There’s one thing most people who live to be 100 or older have in common: they’re positive people. Stress and negativity can damage the immune system and hormones. Encourage your loved one to find joy in each day and overlook the small stuff.
7. Doing Nice Things for Other People
Some studies have shown that people who volunteer are up to 20 percent less likely to develop heart disease and high blood pressure than those who don’t. Help your loved one find a cause he or she is passionate about. Doing nice things for others can also make your loved one a positive person. It’s also important for caregivers to take steps to increase their longevity. Family caregivers need to care for their own wellbeing. If you’re caring for an aging loved one and are feeling overwhelmed, consider hiring a professional caregiver to provide respite care. Des Moines families who want to prevent burnout can turn to Home Care Assistance. One of our professional caregivers can assist your loved one at home while you take a nap, go to work, run errands, or go on vacation. To schedule a complimentary consultation, call (515) 264-2438 today.