Aging is a natural process that no-one can prevent, however, there are certain aspects you need to think about as you get older in order to keep your health and wellbeing in check. The earlier you start planning for old age, the better your life will become in terms of health, happiness and even general lifestyle. In this blog, we’re going to look at some of the key ways you are able to take care of yourself and ensure that your health and wellbeing is of the highest priority. Take a look at the pointers below to give you an idea of what to do:
Have a plan in place
When you have an issue in mind in relation to aging, it can develop into a severe worry if you don’t put plans in place to support it. If possible, aim to plan ahead as far as possible into the future so you don’t come across more severe concerns later on down the line. Some of the aspects you may wish to plan for include:
- Financial considerations including pensions
- The ability to remain independent with potential proposals if this is not possible
- Wills and funerals
If you’re worried about how your health may decline later on in life, you could consider researching assisted living as an option.This enables you to live independently, but also have an element of social interaction by living on a communal site with other adults. After moving in, you’ll also have carers on-hand who will take care of any health or wellbeing needs you may have.Assisted living has become an extremely popular option for ensuring the elderly have the sufficient care they need as they age, rather than placing pressure on their families, which may be something you could consider for the future.
A well-balanced diet
All of us need to eat well in order to remain in good health, but as we age, a well-balanced diet is even more crucial. Getting the right nutrition will lower your risk of developing conditions such as heart disease, which is extremely common in the elderly. As an absolute basis, you should be eating foods that are low in saturated fat and high in fiber; but your diet should include the following:
- Fruit and vegetables
- Protein (meat and fish)
- Whole grains (rice, bread)
- Healthy fat
Take care of your mental health
Aging can become a worry to the point where it could have an impact on your mental health, causing the likes of anxiety and depression. It is difficult to come to terms with the fact that you may not be as physically active or have the body of your younger self, but it’s essential to keep your mind in a good place to live life to the full. Here are some ways you can achieve this:
1. Be open
Managing problems and concerns becomes much easier when we are open to those around us. It’s a good way of making sense of your thoughts and putting strategies in place that will help you cope if you’re worried about the changes you’ll experience as you age. Support from friends and family is vital when you need immediate help, however, in certain situations, they may lack expert knowledge that is needed to point you in the right direction, so it may be worth seeking outside assistance e.g., a therapist or medical professional.
2. Accept your age
Being older has many advantages, but the very idea of time ticking by can become an overwhelming worry to the point where you simply don’t want to accept it. As we age our bodies may not function as well as they used to, but it’s important to get into the right mindset to acknowledge that getting older is simply part and parcel of life. Essentially, you should try and be thankful that you’re still here – aging is a privilege that unfortunately many don’t get to experience. You will have learned lessons along the way that have enabled you to become a stronger and more well-rounded person and tackle almost any situation thrown at you.
Get regular check-ups
Going to the doctor is never a pleasant experience, but taking regular trips to the GP (even when you’re feeling perfectly okay) will iron out any health complaints as soon as they arise, so they can be dealt with almost immediately. There will be certain situations in which you should see your doctor more regularly than the average person, depending on your age, general health, current health conditions, lifestyle and family history.
Train your brain
Just like other muscles within the body, our brain needs to be exercised in order to retain its strength and function, or at least slow the decline. Our brains constantly adapt as we age and it may lose its ability to think coherently due to the fact that more cells die the older we get. Our brains can, however, be sparked up through learning and challenges, which form new cells. Regular brain training can significantly reduce the likelihood of memory loss.
Be aware of signs
There are certain signs and symptoms you shouldn’t ignore as you get older; however, you may simply be in denial of the fact that they are just a sign of getting older rather than an underlying health concern. While this may be true in some aspects, certain signs shouldn’t be overlooked as it could well be a sign of an underlying health problem. These include but are not limited to the following:
- Being short of breath
- Pain in the chest
- Loss of balance
- Difficulty swallowing
- Extreme weight loss
- Moderate sweating
- Severe memory loss
By getting the medical assistance you need quickly, you’ll be much more likely to make a rapid recovery than if any of these signs are ignored.
Aging is not an easy process for anyone, but by knowing how to live well as you age, you’ll be much more likely to be content as you get older.