When you, a family member or friend reaches what is referred to as the senior years, those years should be enjoyable. Good health, a proper diet and a safe living environment are key elements in helping make those senior years happy times. If someone you know is struggling with senior living, there are some steps you can take that can make their life a little easier.
Good Oral Hygiene
Healthy eating, staying healthy and vibrant living are interconnected. However, gum disease, tooth decay, sensitive teeth or improperly fitting dentures can make it difficult to chew properly. Not being able to eat healthy food such as fresh fruits and crispy vegetables may result in a diet composed of unhealthy, soft foods such as cookies and cakes.
When seniors can't hear what people are saying or what's being said on television, they feel disconnected. Seniors often experience hearing loss to the extent that they are not able to communicate appropriately with others. This may cause them to become more reclusive and ultimately lonely. A routine hearing exam and guidance from professionals, such as those with hearservice, can help them get hearing aids that will get them back into conversations with family and friends.
Brighten Things Up
If you know a senior who has given up some of their favorite hobbies such as reading, crafting, word puzzles, painting and other activities that they used to enjoy, it may be because they are having trouble seeing well enough to do those things. Adding task lighting to their home can be helpful. To help avoid falls, it's a good idea to add brighter interior lighting, night lights and motion sensor lights to their home.
Typically, seniors want to remain in their home even when it becomes difficult to do so. There are two different ways to approach this situation when you're trying to help them live a happy, healthy life. One option is to make their house safer by installing grab bars in the bathroom, removing throw rugs to avoid tripping, helping them arrange furniture so that they can navigate a walker or wheelchair and adding a ramp at an exterior door. Another option would be to help them transition from their home to an independent senior living apartment or an assisted living facility where meals are prepared for them, housekeeping services are provided and there's no interior or exterior maintenance for them to worry about.
Helping seniors live happy and healthy in their senior years requires compassion and patience on your part. Making changes is often difficult for seniors. They may try to hide hearing loss, dental problems or a loss of vision because they are fearful of losing their independence or because they're too proud to admit they're having these problems. Make changes slowly whenever possible and try to make each change a positive experience.