If you’re holding onto misconceptions about aging or the aging process that involve an inactive, solitary lifestyle spent in a rocking chair on the front porch day in and day out, the time has come to reconsider those thoughts! The answer to healthy aging is understanding the facts and disproving the myths to embrace a healthier, dynamic lifestyle irrespective of age.
Our experts in elderly care in Denver and the surrounding areas share some examples of the more widespread misconceptions about aging, and the facts behind them, including:
Depression Is Part of Aging
While loneliness and isolation can lead to feelings of sadness, depression isn’t a usual part of growing older. As a matter of fact, research indicates that older adults are less likely to experience depression than younger adults. Still, if you suspect a loved one is battling depression, there are helpful treatment plans available. Talk to the physician for assistance.
You’ll Get Stuck in a Rut
In reality, the opposite is true. Lifelong learning is crucial to keeping cognitive functioning as sharp as possible. Recent research demonstrated improved brain health in older individuals who learned a new skill or enrolled in a course or book club. And, the social benefits that come along with studying something new are an added bonus!
Say Goodbye to an Active Lifestyle
Being active is important for everyone, no matter what age. While the risk of falling is definitely something to consider for older individuals, there are several ways to remain physically active that are appropriate in spite of any chronic health problems or concerns. Ask the doctor for tips first, but in general, low impact activities like swimming, tai chi, and balance/strengthening exercises are often a good place to begin.
Put the Keys Away
There’s a widespread belief that as we get older, we all will need to give up the car keys. Though there are health issues that can make driving dangerous, such as diminished vision or Alzheimer’s disease, many older adults can continue to safely drive – often more safely, as a matter of fact, than younger drivers. Regular physical exams will guide the physician in determining when and if it is time for an older person to give up the car keys.
Dad Had Dementia, Which Means You Will, Too
While genes do play a role in someone’s risk of dementia, there are some other elements that are in our control to minimize that risk. The lifestyle choices we make, such as eating healthy, staying physically active, keeping blood pressure levels under control, and refraining from smoking, are all great protective measures.
You Don’t Have to Give Up Cigarettes Now
It’s possible you know an older adult who feels that they’ve smoked their whole lives and haven’t had any serious issues, so there’s no sense in stopping now. However, studies have established that quitting smoking brings immediate health advantages – within a matter of hours, in fact. First, there is a decline in the carbon monoxide levels in the blood. Within a few weeks, lung function increases and circulation improves. There is also a decrease in cold and flu symptoms, reduced risk for pneumonia and bronchitis, and a diminished risk for heart disease, lung disease, and cancer.
Let Abby Senior Care’s experts in elderly care in Denver and the surrounding communities help an older adult you love enjoy this season in life in the most healthy and happy way possible! Call us at 303-699-8840 to learn about the numerous ways we can help.