The Importance of Self Care for the Older Adult Population
We just finished shipping out our November Purpose Subscription Boxes which were themed "Self- Care". Many older loved ones have taken care of others their entire lives- this box served as a reminder for them to take time and care for themselves. Featured products included "Be Proud" grip socks from Sticky Be Socks, a Fill in the Love Journal from Knock Knock, and a hand painted "Act Old Later" message holder!
We hope this box inspired your older loved one to reflect on their relationships with family and friends!
Self-care, no matter how cliché it may sound, is an important aspect of life one cannot overlook. Self-love is an undeniable part of everyone’s life.
Having said that, older adults are increasingly prone to feeling deserted, leading them to acquire a solitary attitude. Additionally, they tend to display withdrawn and unsocial tendencies which eventually takes a toll on their mental and physical health.
Such feelings are quite common among older adults but aren’t recommended for their overall health. A beneficial solution is to practice self-care. This will not only take one beyond these thoughts but will also pave way for their emotional growth and betterment.
How can older adults practice self-care?
Self-care is simple enough to practice. All you need to do is keep at these little habits of self-care each day, and witness your life transforming for the best!
- Know it is acceptable to ask for help:
As age increases, most people tend to depend on others more compared to previous years. This is a normal component of aging in place and can enhance relationships with your loved ones. If you need anything to be done beyond your reach, never hesitate to ask for help.
- Laugh more often:
Laughing releases happy hormones in your system. Dopamine and serotonin are secreted in your system when you laugh more often and are generally happy and contented. This, in turn, causes your body to respond positively to the happenings in life.
Your medications work better, your diet benefits you more than usual, and your health stays in good shape. Laughter therapy isn’t overrated. It works wonders for the young and old alike.
- Meditate and exercise:
Exercise sets your blood flow in motion. And meditation improves your mental health both for the short and the long term. Practice a 3-5-minute meditating session each day. Basic exercises like walking, stretching, and isometric exercises can be incorporated into your daily routine. This decreases stiffness in your joints and increases blood flow and circulation which improves your overall health too.
- Diet and eating habits:
With increasing age, you need to focus on your diet more than before. Schedules including eating habits is helpful, specifically if you take medications. Make sure you include plenty of fiber, proteins, and simple carbs in your food. Stay away from processed, sugary, and fatty ingredients.
Programs such as Meals on Wheels America can help to aid in the transition of scheduled meals and meal preparation. Healthy eating can increase mental acuity, resistance to illness and disease, energy levels, immune system strength, recuperation speed and the ability to manage chronic health problems.
- Sleeping habits:
Sleeping relaxes our bodies. Hormones that induce hunger and satiate our appetite, ghrelin a and leptin, are secreted while you’re at rest. This helps keep your appetite regulated. When you pay attention to your sleep cycle consciously, you are helping your body heal and recover. Your health and appetite improve, and stress hormones are suppressed. Getting yourself to sleep and wake up at the same time each day is a crucial.
What are the advantages of practicing self-care?:
- Healthier lifestyle:
Sleeping on time, eating on time, exercising, and laughing often, all combined together gives you the best health in mind and body that you can fathom. When you put up with such habits consistently each day, you are bound to see your health getting better. With constant self-care habits, you will even maintain that state of good health in the long run too.
- Confidence improves:
Being able to care for yourself and reflect on your life gives you a sense of empowerment and accomplishment that nothing else can. In due course of time, this practice will only increase you in confidence even when you don’t feel like it.
- Self-compassion increases:
When you watch yourself evolving with constant self-care, you will be in a better position to help others out too. This paves way for self-compassion and more self-love. Self-compassion is a slow process. Most people don’t feel compassion for themselves, especially in old age. But if you make it a norm for yourself, the results awaiting you are outstanding and will surpass that of any other approach.
Summing it up:
Self-love doesn’t happen overnight. It will take a few months of practice and daily perseverance to get into the habit of self-care. Older adults need to make conscious efforts to make it happen, but it can be done. Once you see your mind and body getting better due to these little acts of self-love, you’ll never want to let these habits go.
Self-love is pretty contagious too. Once your friends see you looking after yourself and watch you getting better each day, there’s a high chance that they’ll follow suit. The independence and confidence that comes with caring for yourself are rewarding, even in old age.