As humans age, most tend to decrease in their ability to remain independent, as both their physical and mental faculties begin to slow down and possibly diminish. However, aging does not have to mean one’s life is suddenly confined to a nursing home waiting to pass. Promoting self-sufficiency among the elderly is essential to helping an aging population remain healthy, happy and independent.
Keep Them Mobile
One way to promote freedom among older individuals is by helping them maintain their mobility. The ability to move freely allows people to retain a sense of autonomy and feel like they do not have to burden others to help them move from place to place. Devices like a Leo scooter and other motorized devices can aid in this process, allowing the elderly to get around their home, complete routine tasks and socialize throughout their community with little assistance. Assisting them in retaining their mobility can also provide opportunities to be more social, which is also an important segment in a healthy lifestyle.
Encourage Physical Activity
Consistent physical activity is a key component in prolonging independence and conserving mobility; in fact, much research today shows that an older person’s level of physical activity is an indicator of overall health. Those over 65 should be encouraged to participate in daily physical activities that are appropriate to their fitness level. Activities like walking, yoga and swimming are activities that require minimal impact but still produce positive results.
Equip Their Homes
Equipping the living spaces of elderly citizens is another important step in helping them maintain their self-reliance. The range of needs in terms of home modifications varies greatly from person to person, so it’s imperative to carefully consider which features are necessary throughout each room in the room in order to keep the person independent. Bathrooms may need handheld showerheads, grab bars, raised toilet seats or walk-in tubs. Hallways should have adequate lighting and railings to help with balance. Kitchens may need specialized tools or utensils to make food preparation easier. Beds can be equipped with railings or automated to help make getting in and out easier. Modifying existing living conditions may allow seniors to remain in their homes for a longer period of time, which many may prefer.
Growing old doesn’t have to signify the end of one’s independence. Instead, taking steps to prepare for aging can ensure that senior citizens are able to live a long life that is rich and fulfilling for many years, even as they mature.