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How to Rekindle Health and Happiness in Your Senior Years

How to Rekindle Health and Happiness in Your Senior Years
Reading Time: 3 minutes

By: Sheila Olson – Confluence Daily is your daily news source for women in the know.

Aging isn’t easy, and for many seniors, it can seem like a gradual spiral out of control.  Your mind and body might not be as cooperative as they used to be, and it can feel as if you don’t have any say in the matter.  Thankfully, with a few surprisingly simple changes, you can get a handle on things and rekindle your health and happiness. 

Enjoy your entitlements

Are you taking full advantage of your health care options?  Seniors often go without routine medical treatments, such as annual dental exams, and Next Avenue explains this is typically due to a lack of insurance coverage.  However, you can often gain access to coverage for things like dental exams, vision care, and wellness programs through Medicare Advantage.  It’s important to examine what is available to you and take full advantage of what you’re entitled to enjoy.  Look here to explore Aetna’s Medicare Advantage plans and to find out what benefits you could be utilizing. 

Free up time and energy

Getting appropriate medical care is just one aspect of tending of your health.  If you are like many seniors who have waning strength and vision, certain landscaping and home maintenance chores can become difficult.  You might find yard work is eating up a lot of your time and energy, so consider switching to low-maintenance landscaping.  Evergreen shrubbery and hardscaping can really lighten your burden. 

Also consider paring back on your indoor obligations.  You can hire a cleaning service to do a thorough one-time cleaning, and most homeowners in the Washington area spend between $122 and $237 for it.  With periodic deep cleanings, you can do light touch-ups in between, and dedicate more time and energy toward important things. 

When it comes to cutting your workload, also think about the materials your home is built with.  When things need to be replaced or upgraded, look for easy-care options, such as metal roofing and linoleum floors, and bear in mind it’s important to hire help for many of your projects.  Avoid doing things that become dangerous or difficult, such as climbing ladders if you have balance concerns. 

Do something recreational

What do you do in your spare time?  If you’re retired, you might think that’s a silly question, but Forbes notes that all too often, seniors spend their downtime lonely and socially isolated.  As a result, you can feel stressed, depressed, and even die younger than those who remain connected with friends and family.  You’re more inclined to experience illnesses, at higher risk for dementia, and you’re less inclined to be physically active. 

Consider picking up a hobby.  Some researchers feel hobbies help to structure our time so we are more productive.  Hobbies can energize our minds and bodies, and encourage us to engage with other people.  It’s a stress reliever that helps keep you sharp and can improve your self-image. 

Get out and play!

There are many hobbies which are senior-friendly and get you out and about.  For instance, if you enjoy nature, you can look for an Audubon group, or join a local Master Gardener program.  Do you love to read?  Consider joining a local book club.  You can even connect with bingo events or join a euchre tournament. 

A friend at home

Oftentimes, having someone to come home to can really brighten our days, and when it comes to healthy hobbies, little compares to pet ownership.  A companion animal can reduce your risk for a heart attack, enhance your social interactions, lower your stress levels, and even improve your cholesterol levels.  Many seniors are unsure about getting a puppy or kitten, and they can be a lot of work.  Instead, consider adopting an adult dog or cat from a rescue or shelter.  Older pets are typically easier to own, and they are just as full of love. 

If life feels like it’s a little out of control, it’s time to reevaluate.  Make sure you’re getting good health care, free yourself from unnecessary work, and participate in a fun hobby.  Little changes can make a big difference in rekindling your health and happiness!

 

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Sheila Olson has been a personal trainer for five years. She believes the best way to achieve physical fitness and good health is to set and tackle small goals. She encourages her clients to stay positive and incorporates mindfulness and practices for reducing negative talk into her sessions. She created FitSheila.com to spread the word about her fitness philosophy.

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