Stress is a natural response to certain situations, but this feeling should fade away within a short time. Excessive stress could eventually impact a senior’s immune system, cognitive abilities, and several other body functions. Chronic stress also increases the risk of irritable bowel syndrome, insomnia, heart disease, and many other health conditions. Here are five natural ways older adults can reduce their stress levels and take control of their feelings.
1. Use Breathing Techniques
One study conducted at Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Integrative & Lifestyle Medicine found that breathing exercises are an effective way to reduce acute and chronic stress. One simple breathing exercise is to breathe in for 4 seconds, hold the breath for 7 seconds, then breathe out for 8 seconds. Breathing exercise can reduce anxiety attacks and chronic stress.
Older adults who want to alleviate stress and enjoy a high quality of life can benefit from professional in-home care. If your senior loved one needs professional in-home care in Lincoln, CA, Home Care Assistance is here to help. We are a trusted provider of respite and 24-hour care, and we also offer specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, Parkinson’s, and stroke care for seniors.
2. Go for a Swim
Regular exercise is one of the most effective ways to reduce stress levels, but many seniors have a difficult time with high-impact movements such as jogging and lifting weights. Swimming is a low-impact exercise that burns calories without being too hard on the body. Even hours after the swim, your loved one’s body will still contain feel-good hormones like serotonin, dopamine, and oxytocin.
3. Play with a Pet
Playing with a pet activates areas of the brain associated with feelings of love, empathy, and happiness. This is why so many hospitals and treatment centers allow people under their care to play with service dogs. Owning a pet can also give your loved one something to focus on and a reason to get out of the house a few times a day.
4. Listen to Music
Putting on a favorite song can have a profound effect on the body and mind. Listening to music activates areas of the brain associated with feelings of contentment. If you are going to use music to reduce your loved one’s stress levels, try to make the environment as relaxing as possible. Having your loved one sit in a comfortable chair with no other distractions around may amplify the effects of the music.
Some seniors need help alleviating stress, managing daily tasks, and making healthy lifestyle choices. Whether your elderly loved one needs part-time assistance with basic household chores or you need a break from your caregiving duties, the Lincoln respite care experts at Home Care Assistance are here to help. All of our respite care services are backed with a 100% satisfaction guarantee, there are no hidden fees in our contracts, and we never ask our clients to sign long-term contracts.
5. Have Dinner with Friends and Family
Social isolation remains a common concern among seniors. Older adults who withdraw from society often experience a variety of secondary issues, including depression and stress. Scheduling weekly dinners with friends and family members encourages seniors to socialize and interact with one another. Those who have a difficult time making new friends should try out senior classes or groups where they can meet like-minded individuals.
Chronic stress is one of the many health conditions that could adversely affect a senior’s quality of life. Certain age-related conditions can make it more challenging for seniors to age in place safely and comfortably, but Lincoln live-in care experts are available around the clock to help seniors manage their health. Whether your loved one is living with dementia or is recovering from a stroke, you can trust in professional live-in caregivers to enhance his or her quality of life. If your loved one needs help managing daily tasks or requires extensive 24-hour care, call Home Care Assistance at 916.226.3737.