(NAPSI)—September is Healthy Aging Month, a good time to reflect on how you can optimize your physical, mental and social health as you grow older. While it’s important to take care of yourself at every life stage, seniors are more vulnerable to age-related ailments such as high blood pressure and dementia—but by investing a little time and energy you can make small changes that help create a more enjoyable future.
Here’s a look at three good ways you can optimize your physical, mental and social health as you grow older:
The Mind Matters
Stimulating your brain regularly is a good way to prevent forgetfulness and keep your wits sharp. A national study of 3,000 older adults found that after five years, those who did brain training programs improved in cognitive speed, memory and reasoning. This helped with everyday tasks including managing medications, preparing meals and overseeing finances.
Card games and board games are great ways to challenge your thinking power while connecting with friends and there are many versions you can play by yourself on a computer. Free apps with mind-stimulating games and activities are easily accessible on iPads, tablets or smartphones and are specifically designed to train memory and attention.
Make New Connections
Having close relationships and staying socially active are essential to maintaining quality of life. In fact, research shows that social interaction in older adults can result in such health benefits as lower blood pressure, reduced risk of depression and potentially reduced risk for cardiovascular problems, some cancers, osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis and Alzheimer’s disease.
While it’s sometimes difficult to get together with loved ones who live far away or have school and work commitments, technology lets people connect instantly through text, voice, photos and video. To combat loneliness and social isolation, arrange regular Skype calls with family members and set up a group chat with friends to discuss common interests.
Exercise doesn’t have to mean running a marathon or lifting triple-digit weights. In fact, overexerting yourself may cause additional health problems. Try yoga, pilates or tai chi to relax and tone your muscles while improving flexibility and balance. Daily walks around your neighborhood are a good form of physical activity that require minimal investment.
If you’re concerned about exercising alone, consider getting an automatic fall detection alert system so you can feel more confident. Companies such as Bay Alarm Medical offer medical alert devices that instantly call emergency services with the touch of a button in case of a fall, dizziness or other accidents.
Aging is a natural life process and taking proactive measures to be physically, mentally and emotionally sound can ease the process. During Healthy Aging Month—and all year long—taking the small steps, literally, can go a long way in improving your health and overall well-being.
For further facts on medical alert devices, go to www.bayalarmmedical.com or call (877) 522-9633.