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Why You Should Take Care of Your Mental Health as You Get Older

Written by Claire Bonneau
Last Updated :
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As you age, it’s common for you to experience changes in your physical, emotional, and mental well-being.

For senior citizens, taking care of their mental health ensures that they are happier, more fulfilled, and even healthier. In the United States alone, more than 835,000 citizens live in assisted living communities. [1]

Take heed if you’re currently residing or planning to move into one of the many assisted living communities in America.

We’ve put together reasons why mental health is so important for seniors in assisted living and ways you can maintain your mental health as you age.

Why Should Seniors in Assisted Living Communities Care About Their Mental Health?

First, maintaining good mental health promotes a positive attitude. It can help older adults develop or keep a positive outlook on life, even when life gets tough. [2]

When they feel good mentally and emotionally, they are more likely to engage in activities such as nursing home crafts and socialize with others, which can help keep their spirits and minds active.

woman teaching the senior on how to paint

Since mental and physical health is closely linked, taking care of your mental health can also positively impact your physical health.

For example, reducing stress and anxiety through healthy coping mechanisms can help limit the risk of chronic conditions, such as heart disease and stroke.

Research shows that older adults with good mental health tend to live longer and enjoy a better quality of life.

When seniors are happy and fulfilled, they’re less likely to experience depression, anxiety, or other mental health conditions, which can be debilitating and shorten their lifespan.

Good mental health is crucial for maintaining independence as you age. Maintaining independence for as long as possible is especially necessary for assisted living communities.

There are so many activities and social events to partake in, including exploring the best games for seniors on iPad, which can be both entertaining and mentally stimulating. Stay independent, and don’t miss out!

Living in an assisted living community can provide you with opportunities for socialization and engagement, which help older adults maintain good mental health.

When seniors can connect with others and engage in meaningful activities, they’re less likely to experience feelings of loneliness or isolation, which can negatively affect mental health.

If you’re on the hunt for games that are easy to play and perfect for a group of seniors, be sure to check out our article on games easily played for group of seniors – you’ll find plenty of ideas that are both fun and accessible for all!

Ways Seniors in Assisted Living Communities Can Maintain Good Mental Health

You can do certain things to help you maintain good mental health. Keeping a positive attitude, staying active, and having healthy coping skills can help you navigate your way toward optimal mental health.

Here are some ways to do just that.

Socializing at Events

Assisted living communities offer a variety of events. Taking advantage of these and socializing with others can help you maintain a positive mental attitude and increase your happiness and satisfaction.

senior couple on their painting class

If you’re searching for a comfortable and supportive recliner for an elderly person, you may be wondering, “what is the best recliner for an elderly person?” Our informative articles can provide you with expert recommendations and reviews on the most comfortable and safe recliners for seniors.

Reading and Journaling Regularly

If you enjoyed reading before becoming a resident of assisted living, it’s a great idea to continue for the sake of your enjoyment and mental health. You may want to seek out or start a book club. If you enjoy writing, getting a journal can help you mentally record what’s on your mind. Both reading and journaling will help keep your mind active as you age.

senior man relaxing on the sofa while coloring books for senior

Don’t forget also to explore the crucial topic of “Mental Health Challenges in Aging” to gain a comprehensive understanding of the psychological aspects related to aging and how they can be effectively managed.

Move It!

The assisted living community you’re interested in may provide opportunities for you to exercise. Walking outside or on a treadmill is excellent at any age, especially since it is a low-impact exercise. Yoga, water aerobics, and golf are fun ways to stay both physically and mentally fit.

two lovely senior couple exercising beside a lake

We’re sure you’ll agree that it’s essential that older Americans in assisted living communities take care of their mental health.

By doing so, they can maintain a positive attitude, improve their physical health, increase their longevity, maintain their independence, and enjoy social activities.

Discover the benefits of wheelchair yoga for seniors by exploring our collection of informative articles on this gentle and accessible form of exercise.

Whether it’s through therapy, exercise, or simply engaging in activities they enjoy, seniors can maximize their enjoyment in assisted living communities for years to come.

senior friends eating ice cream

Resources

1. Mental Health Care & Support for Seniors | ASC [Internet]. www.asccare.com. [cited 2023 Feb 28]. Available from: https://www.asccare.com/senior-mental-health-support/

2. Mayo Clinic Staff. Positive thinking: Stop negative self-talk to reduce stress [Internet]. Mayo Clinic. 2022. Available from: https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/positive-thinking/art-20043950

About Author

Claire Bonneau
Claire is a registered nurse with experience in freelance medical writing. She is very passionate about geriatric nursing and seniors care and education (it is her favorite area of nursing). She worked with many seniors in a variety of medical settings to provide high-erLATEST POSTS. Learn more about her HERE.

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