They’re referred to as “the golden years” for good reason; getting older infuses in people wisdom from lessons learned throughout a lifetime, in addition to the possibility to relax from the hectic pace of younger adulthood and make time to truly celebrate what matters most.
Yet our older years can also be a time of senior stress, for a variety of reasons. Health issues can escalate in our older years. There is often grief from the loss of friends and family as they age, bringing with it a reminder of our own mortality. Monetary issues might also be a factor.
So, just how might you identify stress in your loved one, and most importantly, help in minimizing it? Look for these warning symptoms of senior stress:
- Withdrawing socially
- Loss of interest in formerly loved experiences
- A change in eating and sleeping habits
- Higher irritability, aggravation, or agitation
- Senior weight gain or loss
Also, your loved one may verbalize thoughts and feelings of being overwhelmed or stressed by a particular part of life.
The first step in order to help your senior loved one more efficiently regulate stress levels is through making an appointment with the doctor, to eliminate any physical factors for these issues. The doctor may even want to suggest medication, even if just for the short term, to simply help the senior feel more relaxed.
Try these other stress-eliminating strategies to improve your senior loved one’s mindset:
- Help someone else. Almost nothing makes us feel happier than knowing we’re making a positive change in the life of another person in need. Encourage your loved one to find a volunteer opportunity associated with a particular passion, such as supporting the homeless, animals at a pet shelter, victims of abuse, etc.
- Get up and get moving. Being active is beneficial for our mind and mood as much as for our physical wellbeing. Go with your senior loved one to a fitness center, the local pool, or on a regular walk through the neighborhood.
- Schedule an event. Having something enjoyable to look forward to is a superb pick-me-up. Brainstorm ideas of things your loved one has always wished to do, and do something to help make at least one of those a reality.
- Talk (or write) it out. Find out if your senior loved one could be open to talking with a professional therapist to work through stress; if not, journaling can help in putting words to emotions and giving the opportunity for self-expression as well as the release of built-up stress.
- Partner with Anthem Home Care. Anthem Home Care is always on hand to alleviate senior stress in many ways – from pleasant companionship to permit your senior loved one the ability for enhanced socialization and involvement in enjoyable activities, to help with housework and meal planning, errand-running, transportation, and so much more.
If you’re considering respite care in Portland, TX or the surrounding areas, why not consider Anthem Home Care? Contact us today at 361-643-2323 to set up an in-home consultation and learn more about how we can help reduce senior stress and restore a sense of joy and wellbeing for your family member, all in the comfort of home!