How Senior Living Boosts Mental and Emotional Health
Approximately 20 percent of adults 55 and older live with at least one form of mental health concern, such as anxiety, depression, or cognitive impairment. These concerns can result in all sorts of physical and emotional issues that can greatly reduce the quality of life. Unfortunately, issues like depression often go unrecognized in older adults, which means they go untreated and the problems become worse.
“Retirement and getting older is stressful, but that’s not something we talk a lot about,” says Allison Yancey, Executive Director of Residences at Wellpoint, an Independent Living, Assisted Living, and Memory Care community in Huntsville, Alabama. “The truth is that many older adults end up becoming socially isolated and have a lack of purpose. Both those things are incredibly important for maintaining good emotional and mental health. Not having opportunities for human connection leads to a great sense of loneliness and increasingly poor mental and emotional health.” Allison says that, for many seniors, senior living can be the answer to their mental and emotional issues. “Living in a community can provide the stimulation and connection they want and need to thrive,” she says. “Communities like Residences at Wellpoint are designed to provide an environment that allows older adults to thrive in every dimension of wellness.”
In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month, here are some of the ways that senior living provides benefits to seniors and helps them boost their mental and emotional health, enabling them to live their bestg life in their golden years.
Helps us feel like we “belong.”
It’s a universal truth that humans, as social beings, want to belong to something bigger. Part of that means pursuing meaningful objectives, but it also means belonging to some sort of community. All of us want to be recognized, cared for, and feel like we’ve found a home. Senior living can provide this instant community feel since you’re living with a large group of other people who are in the same stage of life as you. Immediately, you’ll find instant friends, a caring team of staff members, and everything you need to make your life easier and more fulfilled. Instead of living by yourself, having to do everything, and being isolated, you’re part of a group that cares about you and wants to help you live your best life. You have, in a sense, an instant family – and an instant sense of belonging.
Experts agree: having a sense of purpose, no matter what age we are, helps us live better and remain healthier. Having purpose promotes happiness, increases our lifespan, boosts well-being, and reduces loneliness. All these things we’ve mentioned are things that help older adults live well and age well throughout their senior years. Because senior living is designed to remove a lot of the headaches of life (such as home maintenance, cooking, and other chores), it gives you back a large chunk of time so that you can pursue goals that fill you up and lift your soul. It also provides opportunities such as interesting events, fun activities, and outings (just to name a few things) that allow you to try new things and reignite old interests.
Purpose doesn’t have to be a big, overarching, all-consuming goal. It can be as small as learning a new skill (like knitting) to doing nice things for other people. And purpose can change. If your purpose is continually shifting, it means that you’re growing, exploring, and discovering new things about yourself … which, in turn, helps you age better and enjoy life more.
Offers security and safety.
Maslow’s hierarchy of needs places safety and security at the base of the pyramid. In other words, feeling safe and secure is a basic need for all individuals – just like food and shelter. If we don’t have this basic need, we are stunted – we can’t progress to pursue things like friendships, knowledge, and self-fulfillment. For many seniors, feeling safe and secure in their homes can be difficult. Physical or mental challenges may make it difficult to navigate through a home that hasn’t been built with the needs of aging adults in mind. There’s always the nagging worry of, “What do I do if something goes wrong?”
In senior living, this worry about safety and security practically goes away. These communities are designed to support aging adults and help them live as safely as possible. Stairs have been eliminated, hallways are wide enough to accommodate walkers and wheelchairs, grab and pull bars are available where necessary, and emergency call systems are everywhere. Plus, there is always professional staff (both caregivers and security team members) available around the clock to provide care within seconds. Having the security that helps is always there goes a long way in providing peace of mind.
A focus on healthy aging.
While we can’t stop the aging process, we can do many things to grow older and more healthy. Many of the ways that seniors can boost health and wellness are pretty common sense: eating right, getting enough exercise, staying socially connected, keeping their brains stimulated, and finding a sense of purpose. Senior adults who live alone aren’t often able to take care of every aspect of their health to the fullest, which can lead to issues like malnutrition, a weakened immune system, and many other things that can reduce the quality of life. However, in a senior living community, everything about the lifestyle focuses on keeping residents as healthy and well as possible throughout the aging experience. From lifelong learning opportunities to nutritious dining to fitness classes and so much more, senior living provides so many ways for older adults to achieve optimal health and stay active throughout their golden years.
Lifelong care, without exception.
Even if you’re a senior who’s active and healthy, you may find that you’ll need more assistance down the road. Senior living provides that assistance and assurance that, no matter what, you’ll receive the supportive care and care you may need to age safely and comfortably. This all leads to one important thing: peace of mind. Knowing that you’ve found a home where you can live well and age well – no matter what? That’s priceless for you and your loved ones. And having that security means that you’re free and clear to enjoy everything this stage of life has to offer.
Where It All Comes Together
At Residences at Wellpoint, we provide an exceptional experience for those who desire Independent Living, Assisted Living, or Memory Care in the Huntsville area. As part of the broader Wellpoint Community “campus,” we cultivate an engaged, intergenerational community unlike any other. Here, we celebrate well-being with an array of social programs; innovative, on-site medical technology; a healthy, fulfilling lifestyle and so much more. Here, our residents enjoy complete freedom of choice as well as the ability to plan their days however they choose. This is because we take the tedious routines of everyday life off your hands so that you can enjoy your life any way you wish. Go on an outing, enjoy the community, get fit in the fitness center, enjoy our dining bistro or shoot a game of pool in the sports/billiards bar. It’s all waiting for you. No matter what your needs are, we can meet them. Our lifestyle philosophy supports every need along your journey, whether you desire Independent Living, need the assistance of our Assisted Living program, or begin to need Memory Care. However your needs may change, we offer on-site medical assistance and supportive services so you can continue enjoying the engaging lifestyle you love. Contact us to learn more!