7 Habits to Encourage Your Senior Parent to Break

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It’s easy to develop bad habits, but as adults age and experience cognitive decline and changes in physical health, unhealthy options could disrupt their daily lives. Therefore, seniors need to make good lifestyle choices that boost their wellbeing, increase longevity, and prolong independence. Continue reading to learn what bad habits seniors need to break and why.

1. Smoking

Respiratory problems and various age-related conditions are common in older adults who smoke. Smoking can cause ineffective treatment, speed up the progression of a disease, and raise the risk of hospital readmissions among the elderly. You can help your aging loved one stop smoking by having him or her carry healthy snacks around, engage in purposeful activities, and surround him or herself with a strong support system.

2. Not Being Active Enough

Living a sedentary lifestyle could result in poor bone health as well as a higher risk of accidents, injuries, and infections. Help your loved one develop a healthy exercise routine, which could include joining a gym, taking up dancing lessons, working in the garden, or walking or running in charity marathons.

If you usually help your loved one exercise but need a break now and then, consider having a professional caregiver take over for you. Phoenix respite care professionals can assist seniors with a wide array of daily tasks, offering family caregivers the chance to focus on other personal responsibilities or take a break to prevent burnout. Whether it’s for a few hours a day or a few days a week, respite care is the perfect solution for family caregivers who are feeling overwhelmed.

3. Being Isolated

Withdrawing from family and friends can lead to poor physical, mental, and emotional health for aging adults. When seniors maintain social lives, they can share their feelings with others instead of keeping their thoughts bottled inside. Socialization can also promote physical activity and mental engagement, strengthening a senior’s overall wellbeing.

4. Not Getting Enough Sleep

Inadequate sleeping patterns are common in older adults, and the bad habit could cause them to experience low metabolism, heart disease, dementia, or insomnia. Encourage your loved one to follow a healthy bedtime routine and get at least eight hours of rest every night.

5. Overeating

Overeating causes the stomach to expand and the body to produce more hydrochloric acid, which could build up in the esophagus. As a result, the risk of heartburn increases. Overeating can also lead to insulin problems and disrupt the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain.

A professional caregiver with training in nutrition and healthy habits can be a wonderful source of information and encouragement as your loved one adopts new healthy habits. Maintaining a high quality of life can be challenging for some seniors, but professional caregivers can help them obtain this goal. Families can trust Phoenix senior home care experts to help their elderly loved ones focus on lifestyle choices that increase the chances of living a longer and healthier life.

6. Drinking

Drinking alcoholic beverages can cause cancer, liver damage, and immune system disorders. To break this unhealthy habit, your loved one should stop drinking liquor and beer altogether and choose healthier options, such as red wine. The resveratrol in red wine can lower the risk of diabetes, dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease.

7. Managing Stress Poorly

Poor stress management can raise the odds of a stroke or heart attack and speed up cognitive decline. However, learning how to manage anxiety levels can lower the risk of depression and boost quality of life. Your loved one should develop strategies to control stress, such as participating in stimulating activities or joining a support group. 

A professional caregiver can provide additional support for your efforts to help your loved one adopt a healthier lifestyle. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of homecare services. You can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia. Call one of our friendly Care Managers today at 602.388.1085 to learn more about our customized care plans.