5 Lesser-Known But Colossally Important Health-Boosting Tips for Seniors
There are so many ways that seniors can step up and take control of their golden years. Maximizing the quality of your life is well within your grasp if you eat right, get enough exercise, and keep track of your health and preventative screenings.
But everyone knows that. Below are some lesser-known but still important ways you can boost your overall mental and physical well-being.
Focus on your dental health
Dental health is not just about having a great smile (although that is life-affirming as well!). You may be unaware that the health of your gums and teeth can affect other systems in your body — for better or for worse! There’s proof of a link between poor dental health and depression. Gum disease has been tied to heart problems and digestive issues as well.
Long story short, you need to prioritize your overall dental health. Be sure to keep up to date with dental appointments and cleanings. Also take steps at home, like daily flossing, proper brushing, and preventing nighttime teeth-grinding.
Balance your gut microbes
Another thing that affects your body and mind in ways you may not expect is the group of a few trillion living microbes swimming around in your stomach and intestines. This collective microbiota not only helps regulate your digestion, but research has linked your microbiome’s balance to proper mood regulation. If you’re struggling with anxiety or depression, for example, you may need to rethink what you’re putting in your gut. Adding foods that come from fermentation has been shown to help, so stock up on that yogurt and kombucha. It’s also smart to look into taking probiotics.
Find ways to give yourself an energy boost
Having more energy to do the things you need to do throughout the day is vital to any sort of wellness regimen. As a senior, your energy levels may suffer more than those younger than you — and that’s to be expected. You need to find good ways to boost your natural energy. Caffeine can work in moderation, but some seniors find it makes them jittery or doesn’t really work after a lifetime of reliance. One good option could be quality energy-boosting supplements. There are plenty of choices in this realm once you figure out what you need. Do you need an afternoon pick-me-up or an all-day aid? What method of delivery do you prefer for your supplements?
Plan fun things
Even if you are perfectly content in your normal, everyday routine, that doesn’t mean you couldn’t be happier if you had something fun to look forward to. Getting out and going on vacations, seeing concerts, and hanging out with friends is vital to seniors because it gives them the social stimulation they need to boost their mental health. Just planning to do fun things can improve your mood for weeks!
Disconnect from screen time after dinner
There’s nothing wrong with spending some time watching TV, playing a game on your iPad, or checking in on friends and family on Facebook. This is not a “ditch technology” tip. What this amounts to is a sleep-enhancement tip. Staring at the artificial light that comes from the screens of our various electronic devices has a proven negative effect on our ability to fall asleep, stay asleep, and enter the deep-sleep period we need for true rest. Perhaps one of the most important ways to improve your quality of life is to get more restful sleep, and to do that, you may just need to leave the phone and laptop outside the bedroom for once.
Combine these infrequently discussed health tips with a good diet and moderate exercise (that you’re already focused on of course) and you should see a marked improvement in your overall mental and physical health. Your golden years are yours. Take control of them.