While we can certainly begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel, the COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on our physical and emotional health and wellbeing. Months of isolation and physical separation from those we love have taken a toll on many older adults and their loved ones. Now is the perfect time for older adults and family caregivers alike to dedicate time and focus to rebuilding overall health. Our senior care team offers mental and physical health tips to help you get started.
Establish a Routine
Having an established schedule helps set the tone for the day. Regardless of what the day’s agenda may be, wake up at a specific time and follow a routine. For instance:
- 7 a.m. – Get up and ready for the day
- 8 a.m. – Have a healthy and balanced breakfast
- 9 a.m. – Stretching, mindfulness, meditation/prayer, and exercise
- 10 a.m. – Call or video chat with a family member or friend
- 11 a.m. – Work on a puzzle or other mentally-stimulating activity
- 12 p.m. – Lunch
- Afternoon: An outing, walk, household chores, engagement in a hobby or pastime, etc.
- 5 p.m. – Dinner
- 6 p.m. – Wind down for the day by watching a movie, listening to music, reading, or doing another sort of soothing activity
- 9 p.m. – Get ready for bed
Obviously, the routine does not need to be rigidly followed, but it can serve as the framework to avoid the desire just to settle into the couch for the day.
Aim for no less than fifteen minutes each day of some kind of physician-approved regular exercise: riding a stationary bike, going for a walk around the neighborhood or on a treadmill, or following along with a recorded fitness program. Include some balance and stretching exercises as well to bolster muscles and help prevent falls.
Reach Out to Others
Even with physical distancing requirements in place, social connection is essential. We know that isolation is extremely hazardous to an older adult’s health and wellbeing, and it’s critical that socialization be a priority. Safe options to stay connected include communicating with others through social networking and other online platforms, using virtual meeting software like Skype or Zoom to “visit” with friends and relatives, and joining online classes, clubs, and support groups. And of course, an in-home caregiver from Absolute Companion Care, an award-winning provider of home care in Baltimore and the surrounding areas, is a superb way for older adults to safely enjoy companionship with other people. We are also here to help seniors set up and use the necessary technology to stay connected with family and friends. Contact us for details!
Try Something New
Holistic physical health tips should include exercises for the mind. Intellectual involvement sparks creativity and helps preserve cognitive functioning. The choices are limitless! Learn a new language, play memory and word games on the web, pick up a hobby you’ve always wanted to try. Reward yourself for the achievements, too!
Take Time to Relax
Anxiety and depression are spiking as a consequence of the pandemic, in individuals of all ages. Tackle mental health conditions by getting plenty of sleep, spending some time engaging in relaxing activities each day, and getting outside whenever possible. Simply sitting on the porch and listening to the birds can be remarkably uplifting and calming.
Absolute Companion Care is always available to help raise the mental and physical health and wellbeing of older adults along with family caregivers. Our respite care services let family members take time off from caregiving responsibilities for self-care. Seniors also discover an enhanced quality of life through our full selection of home care services. A win-win! Contact us at 410-357-9640 for a free in-home assessment. For a full list of the communities where we provide care, please visit our Service Area page.