Looking after our mental health can be just as important as looking after our physical health. Mental health problems were long stigmatized, but it is happily becoming a subject that people are increasingly comfortable and encouraged to talk about. Still though, a lot of people struggle to talk openly about these issues, and older adults grew up during times where this wasn’t encouraged, meaning they might be even more reluctant to open up.
Anyone could need support with their mental health at any time in their life, but seniors can be more prone to issues such as loneliness and depression if they become isolated due to friends passing away and family moving away. So, let’s look at some tips for supporting the mental health of seniors.
It can get more difficult to make friends and socialize as we get older, but socializing is extremely important for our mental health and even our physical health. Seniors can join local clubs and classes to meet others and socialize, and senior living communities are great for facilitating socialization among seniors. If you have a senior relative who can no longer drive themselves places or has difficulty walking far, then offer to be there for them if they need transporting to a local class, for example.
Keep in contact
If you live close enough to your senior relatives, then visiting them regularly can help to keep their spirits up and help them stay connected. This could especially be important after a loved one has moved into senior living. If you don’t live nearby, then regularly calling, texting, and video calling can help you stay connected.
Maintaining an active life can become difficult for seniors who face mobility problems, but it’s an important part of looking after your mental health as well as your physical health. Encourage your seniors loved ones to pursue active hobbies such as golf, walking, or gardening. There may also be local sports or workout classes that are suited to seniors. Going for walks with your loved one will help with both exercise and socializing.
Older adults can start to have sleep problems for a variety of reasons. Someone with chronic pain or a condition like arthritis may be kept awake in the night by their pain, and biological changes like a weakened bladder will make it more likely that they need to get up in the night. Not getting enough sleep can take a toll on our mental health as well as physical health, so it’s important to encourage healthy sleep patterns and address any issues that may be disrupting this.
At Brookstone Terrace of Woodruff, our assisted living and care services prioritize the mental health of our residents as well as their physical health. Get in touch to find out more about senior living options in Woodruff, SC.