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13 Ways To Build Positive Mental Health In Elderly

Your 1+1 Team
September 2, 2022

While we refer to the later years of life as “the golden years,” it can be difficult for an aging adult to enjoy this part of their life as their mind and body change. Aging is considered a transition into a new chapter of your life and any transition in life takes time to adjust to. For your loved one to enjoy the abundance of new opportunities that make up their golden years, they need to build an optimistic outlook on life.

Here are 13 ways to maintain positive mental health in elderly:

1. Eat well: Having a healthy, balanced diet not only benefits your physical health but your mental health as well. Sugary and processed foods can affect your emotions because you may end up feeling tired and low. If your loved one eats healthier, they can boost their energy as well as avoid mood swings.

2. Get enough sleep: Just like eating right benefits your overall health, so does having a good sleep schedule. Getting 7-9 hours of sleep will give your loved one the energy boost they need to feel good during the day.

3. Exercise regularly: Exercise not only benefits you physically but mentally as well. Older adults can maintain both their physical and mental health by doing at least 30 minutes of exercise every day. Doing a simple walk around the neighborhood or some yoga stretches can help your body release a happy hormone called endorphins. Exercise endorphins help reduce stress, improve sleep, and keep you happy.

4. Maintain relationships: Seniors often experience social isolation and it has a significant impact on their mental health. Make sure your loved one is getting that necessary social interaction with friends and family to avoid loneliness.

5. Take out time for things you enjoy: If your loved one is in retirement and cooped up at home then it is the perfect time to do the hobbies they love! Having a hobby has been proven to benefit mental health. It offers that sense of purpose and fulfillment by giving you something to look forward to every day. Some common relaxing activities and hobbies amongst seniors include painting, knitting, scrapbooking, gardening, and making home repairs.

6. Spirituality or religion: It is common for people to gain interest in religion as they get older as it can create a sense of community that seniors are looking for. Many have linked their involvement with religious groups and activities to their improved well-being.

7. Try technology to stay connected: If your loved one lives alone, they can avoid social isolation by staying connected through technology! It’s a missed opportunity for social connection with family and friends when a senior chooses to shy away from using devices. Social media, emails, messages, and photos can be the connection they need if their children live far away or in a different country.

8. Create Flow: Flow is a state of being when an individual is so captivated and engrossed in an activity that they feel content and lose track of time. This can happen when the activity is at the perfect level of challenge (not too difficult but not too easy).

9. Develop Gratitude: Gratitude can change your mindset to have a more positive outlook on life. Your loved one can express gratitude by reflecting on all the blessings in their life. Acknowledging all the little things you feel lucky to have can boost your overall happiness and well-being.

10. Give to others: Performing acts of kindness, big or small, can help us cancel out negative emotions and make us feel good about ourselves. By doing something nice for others, you are benefitting both someone else and yourself.

11. Go back to school: Staying intellectually sharp gives you the confidence and motivation to be happy. Your loved one can exercise their brain by learning something new and taking a class on a topic they’re interested in! Not only would taking classes benefit their mind, but it also keeps them busy and fulfilled.

12. Get a pet: Getting a pet can be a way your loved one keeps busy and avoids social isolation. The companionship of a pet makes a senior feel loved as well as keeps them active. Senior pet owners are reported to have better mental health, reduced stress and anxiety, and increased motivation and happiness.

13. Take control of your health: You can’t enjoy life if you don’t prioritize and take care of yourself. Maintaining healthy habits and staying on top of your health will benefit your loved one’s overall well-being, especially as their mind and body change.

By prioritizing themselves and simply doing the things they love, seniors can uplift their mindset and maintain positive mental health throughout this new chapter in their life. You can read more 1+1 Cares mental health tips here.

1+1 Cares is a referral agency that works for clients and caregivers. We match caregivers with clients and inform them of your requirements. We work for you so you and your loved one can have a safe, enjoyable caregiving experience.

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