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5 Strategies for Preventing Depression in Seniors

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Depression is common in older adults, but that doesn’t make the condition ordinary. Your elderly loved one will need to develop strategies to control his or her stress levels and boost his or her mental and emotional health. Here are some ways seniors can stave off depression and enhance their quality of life.

1. Listening to Music

The sounds of songs and instruments can enhance mental functioning for aging adults, which can lead to stronger relationships and reduce pain. Some doctors recommend music therapy, as opposed to medications, to give seniors more control of their feelings. Listening to music is an excellent activity for those with memory loss and neurological conditions such as dementia because the music memory generally remains in good working condition even as cognitive health decreases. Listening to music can boost your loved one’s mental and emotional health and lower the risk of depression.

For families living in Green Valley, respite care can be a wonderful solution when their aging loved ones need companionship and socialization a few hours a week or just need minor assistance with daily household tasks. At Home Care Assistance, we thrive on helping seniors maintain their independence while living in the comfort of home.

2. Engaging in Art Therapy

Activities such as coloring, painting, and drawing can increase your parent’s sense of wellbeing by reducing anxiety and depression. Being creative allows aging adults to express themselves without being judged, giving them more confidence. Once your loved one completes a project, he or she can look at the work and use it to reevaluate his or her life. For example, if your loved one has painted something dark and dreary, he or she could discover there are negatives in his or her life that need to be removed or bad habits that can be changed.

3. Volunteering

When seniors retire, they need to continue engaging with the world, whether they work part-time or start volunteering. Your loved one can tutor children at the local library, volunteer at a food bank, or donate time to a worthy cause such as diabetes or cancer research. Finding something meaningful to do can provide a renewed purpose in life and lower stress levels.

Green Valley elder care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.

4. Taking Care of a Pet

Staying connected to others is essential for older adults, but sometimes family members and friends are too busy to meet up. However, this doesn’t prevent seniors from engaging in the interactions necessary to stave off depression. Pet sitting or owning an animal could provide your loved one with face-to-face contact and companionship. Walking a dog provides exercise and allows your loved one to chat with other dog owners at a nearby park.

5. Downsizing

Many seniors are stressed due to finances. Instead of enjoying their golden years, many aging adults are worried about being able to cover the costs of medications, home care, and more. To reduce your parent’s financial stress, encourage him or her to move in with you or your siblings. Your loved one can also downsize to cut costs. Moving into a smaller home takes away some of the cleaning responsibilities and reduces monthly utility expenses. If your loved one is hesitant about downsizing, explain the benefits, which include lowering anxiety and preventing conditions such as depression.

In-home care agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Home Care Assistance, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. We offer a revolutionary program called the Balanced Care Method, which encourages seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy. Trust your loved one’s care to the professionals at Home Care Assistance. Reach out to one of our compassionate Care Managers today at 520-625-2050.