Touching Hearts at Home is pleased to welcome Carlye Wilson as our new Administrative Assistant!
How Seniors Can Cope With Anxiety
Anxiety is becoming almost an epidemic among seniors. Some mental health professionals estimate that as many as 20% of seniors have anxiety. Although not all anxiety in seniors is reported or diagnosed. It’s very common for seniors to believe that mental health issues are just something they need to “power through” rather than something that can be treated. Companion care at home providers can help seniors who are aging in place manage anxiety.
Seniors who are aging in place and develop anxiety often develop phobias. But generalized anxiety disorder is the most common anxiety disorder that is diagnosed in seniors. Sometimes aging in place can make anxiety worse. Sometimes just having someone else present can keep seniors from spiraling into an anxiety cycle.
In addition to companion care at home seniors can use these tips to help manage their anxiety:
Establish a Routine
Seniors thrive on routine. Establishing a daily routine can provide a sense of structure and stability, which can help reduce anxiety. Consistent routines help seniors feel more in control of their day, making it easier to manage their worries and fears. Having caregivers come at set times throughout the day can also help relieve a senior’s anxiety. When seniors know a caregiver will be there soon they may feel less anxious, especially at night.
Use Relaxation Techniques and Physical Activity
Seniors can benefit from relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, or progressive muscle relaxation. These techniques can help calm the mind and body, promoting a sense of tranquility and reducing anxiety symptoms. There are lots of books and streaming videos that can help seniors master these methods. There also may be meditation or relaxation classes at the local senior center.
Regular exercise has been proven to be beneficial for managing anxiety. Seniors should engage in physical activities that they enjoy, such as walking, swimming, or yoga every day. Exercise releases endorphins, which are natural mood boosters and can help alleviate anxiety.
Limit Caffeine Intake
Caffeine can increase anxiety symptoms in some individuals. Seniors should limit their consumption of caffeinated beverages such as coffee, tea, and energy drinks. If seniors are going to drink caffeinated drinks they should stop drinking caffeine at around 4 PM to prevent nighttime jitters or anxiety. Herbal teas and other soothing drinks are perfect for seniors to drink in the evening. Many herbal teas promote relaxation.
Loneliness and social isolation can contribute to anxiety. Engaging with others provides support, a sense of belonging, and can help distract from anxious thoughts. Companion care at home helps seniors who are not able to easily get around get that important social interaction.
Seek Professional Help and Explore Relaxing Activities
There are prescription medications that can help seniors who have severe anxiety. If anxiety symptoms persist or significantly impact a senior’s daily functioning seniors should talk to a mental health professional.
A great way to manage anxiety is for seniors to engage in activities they find relaxing and fun. This may include reading, listening to calming music, practicing a hobby, or spending time in nature. Engaging in pleasurable activities can distract from anxiety and promote a positive mood.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Companion Care at Home Services in Rutherford TN, please contact the caring staff at Touching Hearts at Home. Serving Middle Tennessee (Nashville, Brentwood, Murfreesboro, Rutherford, Franklin, Spring Hill, Columbia, Pulaski, and more!) Call today: 629-203-7925.
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