Walk into virtually any store at this time of the year and you’ll be overwhelmed with displays of sale-priced school bags, pencils, notebooks, and lunchboxes – and aisles packed with parents rushing to check off all of the items from the kids’ back-to-school supply lists.
And although we may correlate the new school year with children, it’s imperative to shift our frame of mind to include seniors, who can achieve benefits from continuing education for older adults such as:
- Increased cognitive functioning. Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital just recently paired up to conduct a study on the benefits of intellectual stimulation throughout the lifetime of older adults, and observed a pronounced reduction of memory issues like those displayed in Alzheimer’s disease. In addition to that, a separate study through the University of Texas at Dallas took it even further, discovering that older adults who participated in a new, mentally-stimulating hobby actually obtained a long-term increase in their memory skills.
- Increased physical and mental health. Lifelong learning is linked to a diminished rate of depression and anxiety, as well as a reduced rate of various chronic health conditions including diabetes, stroke, emphysema, cardiovascular disease, ulcers, asthma, and much more. And just reading for as little as six minutes helps minimize stress through lowering our heart rate and reducing muscle tension, resulting in lower blood pressure levels, increased cardiovascular health, and a more robust and efficient immune system.
- Increased socialization. Of particular concern in older adults is the propensity for isolation. Taking classes allows for the experience of community and camaraderie that is so important for our overall feeling of wellbeing, together with the chance to form lasting friendships with others who share similar interests.
Along with onsite classes, there are unlimited opportunities to learn online, in the comfort of home. And in many instances, classes on the web may be offered at no charge, or at a lowered rate for seniors who are not seeking to earn academic credits. Seniors can choose from a variety of topics of interest, and work at their own pace and according to their particular schedule. AARP provides a directory of a number of top e-learning websites for seniors here, that range from cooking tips to learning new languages, computer programming, musical skills, and a lot more.
Anthem Home Care is devoted to ensuring seniors maximize quality of life every single day, and we love supplying the help essential to inspire lifelong learning. Our team of compassionate caregivers and dementia care experts can help research courses of interest, set up online programs, provide transportation and accompaniment to onsite classes, and even manage housework, meals, and laundry to enable older adults to focus on their newfound passion!
Contact us any time at 361-643-2323 to learn more about our top-rated senior care & dementia care in Portland and the surrounding areas, and help an older adult in your life take the first step towards a richer and healthier lifestyle.