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Why Living a Sedentary Lifestyle Is Dangerous for Older Adults

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The dangers of a sedentary lifestyle are even more significant for seniors because they are already at risk for developing serious health conditions. However, seniors sometimes need motivation to stay active after retirement since many long hours spent at home may cause them to retreat to their favorite chair. Encourage your aging loved one to keep moving so he or she avoids the following dangers of becoming sedentary.

Increased Risk of Heart Disease

Physical activity is important for getting the blood pumping throughout the body, and slower circulation can have a devastating impact on the heart. Exercise reduces many of the risk factors for heart disease by lowering cholesterol and high blood pressure. It also helps with weight management so obesity does not place too much strain on the heart.

Seniors who need assistance with exercise can benefit from having an in-home caregiver. Birmingham home care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.

Reduced Mobility

Seniors with arthritis must keep their bodies moving to prevent joints and ligaments from becoming too tight. Seniors should be mindful of the benefits provided by exercises that increase flexibility. Yoga and stretches are great ways for an older adult to increase physical activity levels while enhancing joint health.

If your loved one needs help managing daily chores or encouragement to adopt healthier lifestyle choices, consider hiring a professional caregiver. Whether your elderly loved one needs part-time assistance with basic household chores or you need a break from your caregiving duties, the Birmingham respite care experts at Home Care Assistance are here to help. All of our respite care services are backed with a 100% satisfaction guarantee, there are no hidden fees in our contracts, and we never ask our clients to sign long-term contracts.

Increased Incidences of Memory Lapses

In addition to pumping blood to the heart, physical activity also sends vital oxygen and nutrients to the brain as circulation increases. If too much sitting slows this process, seniors can develop memory-related issues. Sedentary seniors are at greater risk for developing dementia than those who make it a point to engage in regular physical activity.

Greater Chances of Developing Depression

Exercise releases endorphins that promote greater mental wellbeing. Staying active also means your loved one is engaging in meaningful experiences that make him or her feel better. For example, taking a walk in the park allows your loved one to take in the beauty of a natural environment and prevent feelings of isolation. 

Higher Likelihood of Falling

After sitting or lying down for long periods, a senior’s sense of balance starts to decrease, increasing the risk of a fall once he or she decides to get up and move around. Since falls for seniors are more likely to result in an injury, this can generate even greater concerns.

Lowered Life Expectancy

As a sedentary lifestyle begins to take a toll on a senior’s health, life expectancy is shortened. Diabetes, heart disease, and dementia all place your loved one’s life at risk, and these conditions may worsen if he or she fails to stay active. Moving more inside the house can be helpful for reducing the damaging effects of being sedentary.

If your loved one requires help maintaining an active and healthy lifestyle, a professional caregiver can help. For many seniors in Birmingham, Alabama, live-in care is an essential component of aging in place safely and comfortably. However, it’s important for them to have caregivers they can trust and rely on. At Home Care Assistance, we extensively screen all of our live-in and 24-hour caregivers and only hire those who have experience in the senior home care industry. Our strict requirements ensure seniors can remain in the comfort of home with a reduced risk of injury or serious illness. If your aging loved one wants to enjoy a high quality of life in the comfort of home, call us at (205) 438-6927.