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“How Seniors Can Stay Healthy, Happy and In Control of Their Lives”
By: Jason Lewis

To take control of your life, you need to take control of your health. Mental and physical health are important for seniors looking to have a better quality of life, and simple habits can make the most impact. If you want to enjoy your life more and stress less, here are a few tips you should keep in mind:

Stay Active to Stay Healthy

If you want to better your life, begin with a regular exercise plan. Staying active can boost your energy, improve your brain and promote better physical health. In fact, the National Institute on Aging (NIH) considers physical activity to be an essential element in healthy aging. But the type of exercise you do can also determine how well you age. For many seniors, there are some exercises that are not safe to do anymore. Running, deadlifts or rowing are generally not recommended for older adults, unless you are already in top shape. If you’re looking for an activity that is safe for just about anyone, try adding a daily walk to your routine. A half hour walk every morning, or even just a few times a week, can reduce your risk of disease, promote better brain function and give you the activity you need to stay healthy.

Find Positive Ways to De-Stress

Getting in a good workout can fight off disease and keep you healthy, but leaving stress unchecked can undo all that hard work. Stress has the power to negatively impact your health, and negative coping mechanisms can do even more damage. That’s why it’s important for seniors to take effective steps to manage stress. Starting a hobby, connecting with friends and finding time to relax are all healthy ways to unwind during stressful times. All too many seniors turn to alcohol, drugs and prescription medications to deal with stress and anxiety in their lives. Prescription drug abuse is especially prevalent among older adults. If you are, or if a senior you love is, battling an addiction, use this guide to help take back control. Take the steps listed in it to nurture your body, mend your mind and lift your soul to get back to a place of positivity and happiness in your life.

Maintain Your Mental Health

Reducing the effects of stress and inactivity on your body is beneficial for seniors. But to achieve true change and take real control over your life, you have to focus on your mental health as well. Nearly 30 percent of all Americans will experience some sort of mental health issue in their lifetime, but less than half of those will seek help. If you are a senior who is looking to improve your quality of life and feel your best, you have to address any mental health issues you may have in order to do so. Anxiety and depression are all too common among older adults and can greatly impact your quality of life. If you are experiencing depression, anxiety, or another mental health issue, don’t be afraid to reach out to your primary care doctor or a mental health professional for help.

Get Better Sleep

One of the most beneficial steps seniors can take to improve their health is to improve their quality of sleep. Whether due to pain, stress or poor habits, sleep problems for seniors are fairly common. Common or not, a lack of sleep can have severe consequences for your health. If, like many seniors, you are unable to stay asleep through the night, you could be putting yourself at a higher risk for falls and other dangerous health issues. With a few simple adjustments to your habits, however, you can enhance your sleep and improve your overall health. Avoid naps during the day, keep your bedroom cool and limit the amount of caffeine you eat/drink. These small changes can impact the way you sleep and boost your wellness.

Getting older doesn’t have to mean giving up on your health and happiness. For seniors looking to take control of their lives, taking steps to improve their mental health, physical health and overall well-being is the best bet.

Photo Credit: Unsplash