Many assisted living communities today provide life-enriching activities both physical and psychological to enhance the well-being of the seniors they serve. Research has shown that there is immense benefit in having your older adult loved ones engage in mentally and physically stimulating activities, especially because inactivity could increase the risk of potentially fatal diseases like cancer, osteoporosis, and hypertension.
Thankfully, the same research also highlights that this risk is modifiable through physical activity. Let’s dive deeper into the significance of physical and mental life-enrichment activities for seniors in assisted living communities
Importance of Physical Activity
The human body is made to move. However, during the senior years, the inevitable muscular deterioration limits the extent of physical activity a person can engage in. That greatly impacts seniors’ health.
However, assisted living communities have recreational activities to help their seniors engage in physical activity in a safe, more effective way with definite benefits. Activities like swimming, dancing, walking, and hiking are highly beneficial to aid muscular and overall health in seniors.
Some guidelines that assisted living communities follow for safety are:
- Physical activity should be about 150 minutes each week, with no longer than 10 minutes in one go.
- For seniors with mobility issues, physical activity should be done at least 3 times a week.
- Muscle-strengthening activities should be done at least twice a week.
Importance of Mental Stimulation
The senior years are often associated with cognitive deterioration and associated conditions (Alzheimer’s, dementia, etc.).
However, it is possible to slow this process down by actively engaging seniors in mentally stimulating activities that call on using cognitive and comprehension capabilities. Playing chess, for example, helps seniors utilize their intellectual capacity and helps push back the negative effects of mental aging.
Mental activity is also known to improve reasoning abilities in seniors, the will to continue to learn, and sharpen their memory. To leverage these benefits, most assisted living communities provide their seniors with engaging board games, reading, musical instruments to learn, art and craft, etc.
Importance of Social Engagement
Humans are social creatures. Socializing reduces as we age because of the inevitable limitations that an aging body imposes on a person.
To feel better connected to humans and for emotional fulfillment, assisted living communities encourage social interactions and engagement for their elderly residents. By arranging activities like dancing together, Bingo games, celebrating birthdays, movie nights, etc., assisted living communities give their seniors a way to socialize.
Aging can be a challenging time for everyone – the aging person and the people who care for them. The good news is that aging can be made pleasant and happily livable by providing opportunities to move, think, and socialize safely and effectively, and assisted living communities do this through life enrichment activities.
To learn more about options for the older adults in your life, visit Dellwood Gardens today!