One of the most common mental health conditions are anxiety disorders, and approximately 10 to 20% of older adults suffer from anxiety. Anxiety can greatly affect an individual’s quality of life, which is why it is important to find effective ways to manage it. If you or your loved one is dealing with anxiety and it is affecting daily living, consider moving to an assisted or independent living community where there are people around to assist you. Read on to find out ways to relieve anxiety in seniors.
If you find that anxiety is causing your heart to race, try to engage in breathing exercises and breathe deeply. Breathing deeply helps to increase the level of carbon dioxide within your blood, and this helps to soothe the part of your brain responsible for anxiety. It can also help an individual to rest and relax by activating the parasympathetic nervous system. While it takes time to master breathing exercises, it will become more effective when you do it regularly.
Often, older adults do not get sufficient exercise. However, it has been proven that physical activity is an effective way to improve mental health. Older adults can consider taking long walks and hikes, dancing, swimming, bodyweight exercises or even chair yoga to keep their body active. There is also a lot of online resources available for older adults to follow that are senior-friendly. Of course, it is still important to consult with healthcare professionals before starting a new workout plan.
Food is important in sustaining both the physical and mental health. Hence, it is important to get enough healthy fats, carbohydrates, and protein. A healthy diet can help to keep anxious thoughts at bay. Ensure that there is a variety of healthy foods available at every meal and limit the consumption of alcohol and junk food.
Some types of food can trigger anxiety, such as nicotine or caffeine. These are stimulants that can cause an individual to feel jittery or nervous, especially when taken in high amounts. You can consider reducing smoking or avoiding it altogether and limiting the intake of caffeine in order to feel relaxed and less anxious.
Many older adults feel very lonely, especially if they are not very mobile and cannot go out often. This isolation can lead to mental health challenges like anxiety. A great way to increase social interaction is through visits from family. This can show them that they are still loved and cared for. Another option to increase social interaction would be through moving to independent living communities where residents can forge new relationships with the people they live with and engage in exciting and fun activities.
If your anxiety is reducing your quality of life and affecting how you live, it may be time to consider moving to an independent living community. Our friendly team of professionals will be happy to help should you require any assistance. Feel free to contact us to find out more about what we have to offer today!