Tag Archive | "aging"

How To Look After Yourself As You Get Older

No matter how old you are, looking after yourself is an essential thing that you must do. It is more important to look after yourself than it is to look after other people, as you will be in no position to help anyone if you’re not in tip-top shape yourself. As you grow older, you do need to pay more attention, though because part of aging means that your bones will likely become more brittle and thinner as you get older. Because of changes like this, you could be at risk of conditions like osteoporosis which is caused by decreasing bone mass, plus you will have to be more careful of accidents and falls because your bones will break easier as they get thinner. To look after your bones as well as you can, make sure you have a nutritious diet and a good calcium intake as well as a decent supply of vitamin D

It is also essential to have a healthy diet and to do regular exercise as this can lower your heart rate too. As well as this you should cut out those bad habits such as smoking which we all know causes lung cancer and is linked to a whole range of different health problems, including heart disease and bronchitis. 

As part of your diet, you need to remember to stay hydrated and drink lots of water. While any drinks will help you to avoid dehydration but try to avoid sugary fizzy drinks and if you do indulge in alcohol now and then, try to limit it to only a few days a week, so you give your liver time to recover.

Visit your doctor regularly and make sure you get routine tests are done, such as checking your blood pressure and cholesterol levels. High readings mean an increase in your risk factor for stroke and heart disease; however, any problems are usually reversible with medication.  Get checks for vitamin D deficiency as this has been linked to health issues such as cognitive impairment, bone problems, and cardiovascular disease.

If you are taking medicines, then make sure you are organized with them, if they have to be refrigerated then make sure you do that. If you have a lot of medication that needs to be kept at a specific temperature then you can get yourself a fridge, especially for this, check out Ethicheck Ltd to see what your options are. If you have to take your medicine with food or at certain times, then set reminders and it’s also a good idea to have a pillbox with days of the week on it and organize this at the beginning of each week so that you don’t take more or less than you should. 

Your senses could be affected by aging, and you may start to notice that you are losing your sense of taste, smell, and touch as your body takes longer to react and needs more to stimulate it.

Getting older can affect your reflexes, and while dementia is not inevitable as you age, it is common for people to experience some forgetfulness as their cells and nerves become damaged over time. 

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3 Suggestions for Maintaining Autonomy as You Age

When all is said and done, we all want to age as gracefully as possible and to continue enjoying a high quality of life for as long as possible — and ideally, forever.

To a significant extent, maintaining a high quality of life, and ageing gracefully, are a matter of maintaining our autonomy as we age. To be able to do as much for ourselves as possible, without having to depend excessively on the assistance of others.

There is, of course, no shame in turning to others for help as we age — but it’s a good basic standard to minimise the degree to which we need to do so.

Here are a few tips for maintaining autonomy as you age.

Use whatever aids might help you

There is an entire, fruitful industry of aids and gadgets that exist specifically to help older adults to maintain a degree of autonomy in their private lives.

The gadgets and aids offered by Vital Living, for example, include things ranging from electric can openers, to mobility scooters, and bathroom aids.

These tools generally work by augmenting your own natural abilities, and allow you to continue living on your own terms, in the way you’re familiar with, in spite of conditions or physical ailments which might otherwise make it difficult to do so.

Avoid sedentary living and focus on a healthy lifestyle

This is a tip which ideally is put into practice throughout your life, but there are also very significant benefits to simply remaining physically active and reducing time spent in a sedentary state, as much as possible.

All the research seems to agree that the people who are the most routinely physically active — meaning things like frequently walking around and doing sustainable levels of exercise, rather than trying to run marathons every week — enjoy better health and live longer on average than those who don’t.

Particularly as you age, there seems to be a “use it or lose it” mechanism that comes into play, where keeping your body moving is especially important in maintaining flexibility, strength, vigour, and health.

Of course, in addition to being physically active, you should emphasise a healthy diet, primarily focused around a reduction in the amount of processed food you’re eating.

Maintain the basic principle of doing as much for yourself as possible

As stated at the beginning of the article, there is, obviously, nothing wrong with seeking help from other people if you need it.

But it’s nonetheless true that psychologists are aware of a phenomenon called “learned helplessness”, where people who routinely depend on others to do things for them — things which they could have done for themselves — naturally become less confident in their own abilities, assume they can’t do things which they could in fact do, and adopt an overall “helpless” approach to life.

You may have a well-meaning relative who wants to make your life as comfortable as possible, and so offers to help you with everything. For the sake of your autonomy, it’s a good practice to turn down the help in all cases where you can safely do without it.

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