In this day and age, there is greater openness and willingness to have important conversations regarding sexuality, sexual expression, and sexual health than there was even just a decade ago, and a great deal of attention has been placed upon shaping understandings and discussions of sexuality to better promote safe, healthy, and fulfilling sexual relationships. The reality is, however, that these efforts are most often directed towards those in adolescence and adulthood, and very little emphasis has been placed upon working to promote a willingness to talk about the sexualities of older members of the population. Popular discourse tends to support the notion that seniors and older adults lack any form of sexual drive or desire. The common understanding, influenced in large part by the taboo that still accompanies discussions of seniors’ sexualities, is that older individuals no longer take part in sexual activity or have the same degree of sexual desire as younger members of the population. Contrary to these beliefs, however, sexual intimacy continues to be an enriching and important aspect of life for many seniors.
Cholesterol is a substance produced by the liver that also exists within certain foods. It is a fat-like waxy substance that travels through the bloodstream and is involved in the functioning of the body in its own unique ways. There are two different types of Cholesterol, High-density lipoprotein (HDL) and Low-density lipoprotein (LDL). The former assists the body by taking part in the prevention of heart attack and stroke, while the latter is the primary source of the high levels of Cholesterol that can negatively impact the body. For these reasons, the two types are known as “good Cholesterol” and “bad Cholesterol” respectively. It is also worth noting that about 75% of Cholesterol in the blood is made by the liver to perform specific functions, while the last 25% comes into the body through food (primarily from animal products).
While everyone finds peace and calm in different places, a wonderful avenue worth exploring is the therapeutic power that time spent with animals can have. Animal Assisted Therapy is a unique type of therapy that can be deeply enriching and beneficial for seniors in any condition, and can be a fun and calming way to work towards a better state of wellbeing.
The things that lead people to keep on smoking vary depending upon personal circumstances and motivations, whether smoking is nostalgic, a coping mechanism, a stable habit, or a deep-seated addiction. No matter what drives a person’s smoking habit, the act of smoking is a very hard behaviour to quit. In order to achieve a better state of overall health and wellbeing, it is vital that seniors make moves towards quitting smoking. While the task of letting go of a well-cemented habit or addiction is daunting and will undeniably be difficult, with the right support, strategies, and encouragement, seniors can work towards smoking cessation and can better their health in important ways.
The emotional anguish and devastating sadness that accompanies a loss can influence both the mental and physical health of seniors in significant ways. As we continue to grow older, dealing with death and bereavement becomes something we have to do more and more often as the loss of loved-ones and friends happens more and more frequently when those loved-ones are also growing older and moving into the later stages of their lives. We all know that grief and loss are feelings and experiences that are hard to work through, but it is important to be aware of the particular ways in which seniors can be touched by the emotions, feelings, and thoughts that accompany the loss of someone they love.
We’ve all heard laughter referred to as “the best kind of medicine”, but most of us don’t know how true it is that laughter can help our bodies and minds. Laughter is more than just an outward expression of happiness, and is actually connected to numerous processes within the body that can help to improve overall feelings of wellbeing, health, and wellness in terms of mind, body, and spirit. Seniors can reap great benefits from taking part in activities, interactions, and experiences that make them laugh, because the very act of laughing has the power to help add some light to the day and ward off worries and negativity.
Anxiety is a natural feeling that performs a useful and necessary function for our safety and wellbeing. When Anxiety becomes such a recurrent and dominant aspect of day-to-day life that it begins to overpower everything else and stops people’s from living happy, fulfilling, and enriching lives, however, it starts to become cause for concern. Anxiety Disorders can have a significant impact upon how people are able to live their everyday lives, and can be really challenging to manage. While anyone can be faced with an Anxiety Disorder, certain aspects of life that are features of older age make seniors vulnerable to experiencing Anxiety Disorders. Worries associated with personal health, lower self-confidence, chronic pains, the loss of social connections as a result of death or isolation, and numerous medical conditions can all add up to create a web of worries that fill seniors’ daily lives with fears and anxieties. Cultivating an awareness of the types of anxieties that seniors may face, and learning how to identify and address them can help seniors and their loved-ones to work towards better managing Anxiety Disorders.
Starting a conversation about mental health can be difficult, but these thoughtful conversations can give seniors an opportunity to express themselves, and can help to make sure that all possible matters of concern are sufficiently tended to. When combined with all the other cognitive and physical changes and adjustments that seniors are dealing with as a part of older age, mental health problems, if left unaddressed, can have a significant and meaningful impact on seniors’ lives.
The deeply meaningful bonds and connections that can be forged and strengthened as you care for someone that you love can be incredibly fulfilling and deeply rewarding. While the emotionally enriching and relationally stirring feelings that can come from a caring relationship are undeniable, another reality of caregiving is that it can often be stressful, overwhelming, and draining. The often all-consuming nature of considering needs and delivering care can alter caregiver’s feelings of health and wellbeing in negative ways that impact their capacity to take part in enjoyable aspects of their lives to the fullest extent. Taking on the entire breadth of responsibility for the provision of care at all times requires a great deal of work and sacrifice for one person to carry on their own, and people who are committed to caregiving must also remember that making sure their own needs are met should be made a priority as well. It can be difficult to prioritize your own health and wellbeing when you are so deeply dedicated to pouring yourself into caring for another person, but exploring the option of Respite Care, which is designed to address this very problem, can be a positive way to bring about a greater sense of balance and ease.
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