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Helping Seniors Deal with Stress

Upon thinking about the stage of life in which seniors find themselves, we may find ourselves imagining calm and relaxing days filled with leisure time and free of overwhelming responsibilities. We tend to think about the later stages of life, during which things tend to be winding down, as pretty much free of stress, but the truth is that there are many features of senior life that can be stressful and difficult to manage without support. On top of the everyday stresses of life that still exist in older age, seniors also face challenges related to health concerns, loss of friends, family, or social circles, reduced levels of independence, and other typical features of older age that can cause immense feelings of stress. In an attempt to help seniors care for both their physical and mental health, it is important that loved-ones and caregivers understand the stresses that seniors may be facing, as well as the negative impacts that can come as a result if feelings of stress remain unaddressed and unattended. What Stress Does In addition to the general anxiousness and feelings of unease that stress can cause, prolonged stress also has the capacity to have meaningful effects upon the health of the physical body. Stress causes the body to release cortisol, which is a hormone that has been proven to negatively impact the area of the brain known as the hippocampus, the functioning of which is imperative for the storing and recalling of memories. Not only can an increase in stress hormones impact memory, it can also result in numerous other health concerns, such as: High Blood...

Importance of Play Seniors for Seniors in Greater Edmonton

Engaging in various forms of play is something that we can all view as enjoyable, but we may be more reluctant to view it as constructive. The common trend in today’s society is to place value upon busyness and goal-driven tasks and responsibilities, while we devalue acts that do not have tangible results or outcomes that seem objectively productive. The reality is, however, that playfulness is relevant and beneficial in its own uniquely important ways, and people of all ages, including seniors, should prioritize play and make it a part of their daily lives. What is Play? ‘Play’ can be understood and defined in numerous ways, and each person will likely have their own unique and personal understanding of just what activities and behaviours constitute play in their lives. The crucial idea that underlines all understandings of play is that playfulness involves taking part in activities for no reason other than that they provide joy, rather than in pursuit of a goal-oriented outcome. Anything that is done purely for enjoyment and fun without any other purpose can be described as play. Why Seniors Should Play The joy, creativity, imagination, and feelings of fulfillment that can be accessed and explored through engaging in acts of playfulness are beneficial for seniors in a variety of notable ways. Mental and physical health can both be improved through engaging in play. The following is a list of ways that seniors’ can benefit from participating in fun, play-oriented activities: Boosts Creativity Boosts Immune System Creates Feelings of Happiness and Relaxation Helps Build Relationships Improves Cognitive Function Improves Mood Keeps the Brain Active Lowers Blood...