Love is in the air this month, and part of that means taking the best care possible of the ones you love. February also is a time when the nation spotlights heart disease, the number one killer of Americans. As part of American Heart Month, take some time to combine the two - focus on the heart health of the ones you love the most, including the seniors in your life. People aged 65 and older are more likely to suffer from heart attacks, strokes, and heart disease, according to the National Institute on Aging. Its time to get down to business. Focus on the heart health of the seniors in your life. Ensuring they get checked out by a medical professional is important. But also do some fun, healthy things together to promote heart health.Here are 25 tips for seniors to be heart-healthy.Make an appointment to see your primary care physician. Find out how youre doing, and see what recommendations he or she has for your heart health.Go to the free yoga classes at Venice Beach. There are classes in the morning or a sunset class at 5 p.m. each day, all for free, seven days a week.If youre still using tobacco products and smoking at this age, its time to stop. Make this the year you quit. If you have a senior loved one in your life that smokes, help them stop and make it a goal for this year.Get your blood pressure and cholesterol checked. Know your healthy ranges, and ensure you stay within those.Find some new recipes that are heart-healthy and make them together with your senior loved one.Head outside each day. Even if youre just going to fetch the mail from the mailbox, it gets you moving and out into the fresh air.Be around people. Loneliness is bad for the heart. Find friends you want to be with, join an event at the senior center, or call up a family member you havent talked to in a while.Get some Zzzs. The Centers for Disease Control says getting enough sleep is vital for heart health. Portion control is key to healthy eating. Before your meal or before you snack, measure out your portions, so you dont overeat. Head to the Peace River Gardens in Punta Gorda. There are different botanicals to see throughout the year. It is a great place to walk around and get some exercise while seeing the sculptures and artwork. There also are events to attend throughout the year.Make it a goal to walk at some different beaches this year. Try a new one each week. Hit some youve never tried before, or go back to an old favorite. Walk a little further each time you visit. Walking in the sand is great exercise, and looking at and listening to the ocean is good for the soul. Feel the sunshine on your face at least once a day if its shining, even for a minute. Whether you simply step onto your patio or head to the beach, it is a great way to get into a good mood and improve your overall health.Move a little more each day, or each week. Make some goals, such as walking one block further, or riding your bike for a minute more each week. Every little bit counts, and leads to heart healthier habits.Have you gone to the grocery store and seen some odd-looking spiky fruits and wondered what they were? Put one of those in your cart and try one for the first time. See if its something you want to add to your heart-healthy diet. It seems like everyone loves pickleball. Try it out and see if youre a fan too.Hire a caregiver that can help you get moving. Compassionate caregivers at places such as Visiting Angels Punta Gorda can provide services such as companionship on a walk around the neighborhood, or fall prevention help as you do laps in your own home. Hunt for sharks teeth at Venice Beach. Even if you dont find a lot, the act of bending down each time, sticking your hand in the water and seeing what treasures youve found is exercise, and its a fun hunt and thing to do. Watch a comedy or a funny show. Laugh out loud. As they say, laughter is the best medicine.Turn on the tunes. If you have upbeat music playing in your home or car, you cant help but bop around to it. It puts you in a good mood and adds more movement to your day. Head to a farmers market and grab some fresh fruit and vegetables. Wash them up so you have healthy, ready-to-eat snacks.Make sure your seniors get up and out of bed and moving each day. If needed, hire a caregiver that can help them get dressed and ready for the day. Being dressed and ready helps put them into the right mindset to be active and alert during the day. As youre sitting down watching a show, lift some hand weights or do some leg lifts. Make it a goal to do 20 on each limb while youre watching the nightly news before dinner. Stand more if youre able. Do some of the tasks you might usually do sitting down while standing instead. For example, pace around the house while youre on the phone instead of sitting in your comfy chair. Stretch each day. It not only keeps you more nimble, but stretching can get your heart rate up.Eat at least two servings of fish a week The omega-3 fatty acids in fish are great for heart health.Visiting Angels is Here to HelpIf you are looking for help with your senior loved one as they strive for heart health, our professionals at Visiting Angels Punta Gorda are here to help. We provide a variety of home care services to meet any need they might have, from getting dressed for a morning walk to help with light meal prep.Our expert team of caregivers serves clients in Punta Gorda, North Fort Myers, Boca Grande, Cape Coral, Sanibel, Captiva, Arcadia and surrounding areas. To learn more about our services, call us at 941-347-8288, or fill out an online form here.
Chances are, most senior citizens have spent much of their lives taking care of others. From raising children to caring for their spouses to eventually helping their own parents, caregiver has probably been one of the big titles theyve held. But what about caring for themselves? In the past several years, the phrase self-care has become a part of the English lexicon. While it might seem self-explanatory - caring for oneself, it can go a little deeper than that. Self-care is not only doing things such as caring for your body; it also means caring for your own mental health and taking care of your overall well-being. Some seniors, whove spent their lives working to help others, might view it as selfish. But it is the opposite. It is important for the enjoyment and health of their lives. For example, for seniors, it can mean making decisions that improve the overall quality of their lives, their health care and their living situation. Prioritizing this can be especially important for seniors who are facing many changes in their lives, many highs and many lows along their aging journey.Here are some ideas for self-care for senior citizens.Relieve StressWhether it is a walk through nature or a steaming hot cup of tea, finding something that helps relieve stress is important for senior citizens. Maybe your stress relief is watching a funny television show. Take an afternoon to binge-watch one of your favorites and help relieve some of your stress as you laugh it away. Dont feel selfish for taking time for yourself that will make you feel better.Saying No When NeededWhile many seniors jump at the chance to have some fun with family or friends, sometimes they just dont feel like it. While they might love Fishermens Village on a normal day, sometimes the thought of leaving the house and all of that activity might be too overwhelming. It is okay to say no once in a while. If the idea is overwhelming, you can skip some events or tasks. Maybe your grandchildren are asking you to help sew their Halloween costumes, but you just cant do it because of your painful arthritis this year. It is ok to ask for some help with the task if you arent feeling up to it or if it will stress you out too much. Instead, maybe suggest doing it together and teaching someone else in the family to do the task and the parts that might be hardest for you to do.ExercisingA wonderful form of self-care is exercising your body. It makes you feel better afterward when you do it both physically and mentally. Take time out of your day for a leisurely walk or to splash in the pool. Getting your body moving is self-care.Hobbies for FunMaybe there is a hobby youve always wanted to try, such as photography. For you, picking up a camera and shooting beautiful pictures is a way to soothe your artistic soul and a form of self-care. Or maybe there is a hobby youve always loved but never had the time for while the kids were growing up. Take it up again to make your soul happy. Go fishing and spend hours on the water. Or start making mosaics again like you used to. Do something that you enjoy doing.Time OutsideTake some time to feel the sun and warmth on your skin. Feel the breeze in your hair. Maybe even slip off your shoes and ground yourself in the sand or on the grass. Getting outside is a form of self-care. Put the tasks you feel you need to complete that day aside for a bit, and take some time to enjoy the outdoors and the scenery of beautiful Southwest Florida.We Can HelpAt Visiting Angels, our professional and compassionate caregivers can help the seniors in your life focus on self-care, and anything else they might need help with. If you are looking for help caring for your senior Visiting Angels Punta Gorda is here to help. Our in-home caregivers provide a variety of home care services, including helping seniors get ready each morning, helping them do the things they enjoy each day, and helping with specialty care, including fall prevention and dementia care.Our highly-regarded team of caregivers serves clients in Punta Gorda, North Fort Myers, Boca Granda, Cape Coral, Sanibel, Captiva, Arcadia and surrounding areas. To use our services or to learn more, call us at 941-347-8288, or fill out an online form here.
The holidays are quickly approaching, and no matter your age, the excitement and anticipation often build around this time of the year. It is a great time of the year to plan fun and special events with your aging loved ones. From tried and true family traditions to trying out the new, there are many ways to have holiday fun with your senior loved one. Here are some suggestions.Warm From the InsideNothing says the holiday season like a cup of hot cocoa or a specialty holiday coffee drink, even in warm Florida. There is just something about a warm drink that exudes comfort. Taste test some of the fun holiday concoctions, such as a gingerbread latte or a black and white peppermint mocha, with your senior loved one. If tea is more your thing, you can try a Holly tea, with tea harvested right in Florida by Youpon Brothers at Downtown Kava. The cafe, which, of course, also serves coffee, is right in the heart of Punta Gorda. You can even sip your hot drink on the outdoor covered patio Florida style and look at the holiday decorations adorning the nearby palm trees. If your senior loved one would prefer to sit on the patio full of poinsettias at home, you can make your own creations there, too. From hot cocoa infused with candy cane pieces to eggnog-spiked coffee, the choices to put in your mug are endless.Hit the TownFor some holiday fun, there are plenty of things to do with your senior loved one in the area. Many of the activities can even be done within the comfort of your car if your favorite senior is having mobility issues. For example, you can simply head out when its dark outside and drive through the neighborhoods looking for Christmas lights. Make your own contest among the passengers in the car, voting for your favorite, the brightest and most gaudy.For a more intense light show all in one spot, head to the Charlotte County Fairground this year for the debut of The Wonderland of Lights. There will be hundreds of dazzling light displays shining brightly from December 1 to 30. It will be open each night from 6 to 9 p.m., and the cost to enter is per vehicle.Other ways to have fun with your senior loved one on the town are to hit the local shops or special holiday fairs, including the Thanksgiving weekend craft festival in Punta Gorda, where you can start or try to get all of your shopping done in one outing.Cozy at HomeOne of the best holiday feelings is being at home surrounded by your loved ones in a house decorated for the season. Plan some cozy fun at home for your senior loved one this year, especially if they are having mobility issues and feel safer in the comfort of their own home. You can decorate their space with lights and ribbons to make it more festive, and then enjoy the atmosphere snuggled under a cozy blanket watching a holiday film. Ask them about their favorite holiday film growing up, and then watch that classic. Maybe youll want to introduce them to a more modern favorite of yours. Even if the weather is fairly warm outside, you still can hibernate indoors in a cozy atmosphere with candles and lights.You and your senior loved one can do holiday crafting at home. Making decorations for the tree is fun, whether it is construction paper chains of red and green or pipe cleaners twisted to make stars or antlers on a reindeer.Baking up holiday favorites is a great way to enjoy the season with your aging loved ones. You can bake favorite Christmas cookie recipes that are a tradition in your home, or you can try some new recipes youve found while flipping through magazines or browsing the internet. Find out if theyd really like to make the fruit cake again that no one likes, or maybe theyd like to try to bake a homemade pot pie. Have fun and taste-test the results together.We Can HelpIf youre looking for help with your senior loved one this holiday season, we can help. Our professionals at Visiting Angels Punta Gorda provide a variety of home care services, including companionship during the holiday season, which can often be lonely for seniors. We also can help with personal care to get your loved ones bathed and dressed for holiday events. Visiting Angels also has specialty services, including respite care, safe and steady fall prevention and dementia care.Our professionally trained caregivers serve clients in Punta Gorda, North Fort Myers, Boca Grande, Cape Coral, Sanibel, Captiva, Arcadia and surrounding areas. To learn more about our services at Visiting Angels, call us at 941-347-8288 or fill out an online form here.