There are a variety of methods that seniors can use to take control of their mental and physical health. Seniors may rely on a combination of doc5tors, medicines, and exercises to stay mentally and physically healthy. Three non-traditional methods can also help seniors regulate their mood, sharpen their mental state, maintain their heart health, and more.
There are a variety of studies that show that meditation can have a positive effect on a senior citizen’s mental and physical health. Meditation is said to promote longevity, reduce healthcare costs over time, delay the effects of Alzheimer’s and prevent loneliness. Even if these effects seem far fetched, it’s widely agreed that meditation is good for one thing: reducing stress.
People can experience a great deal of stress in their later years. Death of a spouse, moving in with younger family members, and chronic health problems can all cause anxiety, ultimately leading to panic attacks, high blood pressure, and even heart attacks.
Meditation calms the centers of the brain that produce anxiety and can give seniors a greater feeling of control over their own mental state. This creates a cycle of calmness, awareness and control. The more seniors feel that they can manage their own emotional state, the calmer and more at peace they feel with their own lives.
Meditation is most helpful for sharpening a senior’s mental and emotional state, and yoga helps restore physical health. Yoga can improve balance and joint flexibility, strengthen muscles, improve self-control, and provide gentle exercise for seniors.
The improved physical ability that comes from yoga enables some seniors to live more independently and to take better care of themselves without help from others. Seniors who suffer from health problems like arthritis, osteoporosis, chronic pain, and heart disease can all benefit from participation in a yoga program that addresses these specific needs.
People in China have practiced Tai Chi for over 2,000 years. Tai Chi has been described as “meditation in motion,” because it requires mental focus combined with slow, gliding movements of the arms and legs. This gentle, flowing exercise is shown to have positive effects on heart health, arthritis and Parkinson’s disease. Like yoga, Tai Chi is also known to help seniors with their pain management and high blood pressure. Tai Chi is useful for improving mood, instilling participants with a feeling of peace and improving confidence. It is associated with an overall feeling of well-being.
Speak with a physician before signing up for a physically challenging activity like yoga or Tai Chi. For the best results find a program tailored specifically to senior participants. Programs specifically designed to address ways seniors can stay healthy will help seniors get the most benefit from their participation.