The Benefits of Active Relaxation for Seniors
Staying active can help seniors, and other adults, live a healthy lifestyle, but, did you know that it can also help with stress reduction? Here are the benefits of active relaxation for seniors.
Unlike passive forms of relaxation, such as meditation, active relaxation works to reduce stress through physical activity. According to a study, performed by The American Institute of Stress, 49% of American’s use exercise to combat the negative health consequences associated with stress. For seniors, stress can cause serious health conditions including heart disease, Dementia, diabetes, obesity, and depression.
For seniors, active relaxation has the power to reduce stress, improve cognitive function, decrease the risk of falls, and increase social engagement. We will go into each of these benefits in more detail within the content of this blog.
Reduced Stress from Active Relaxation
Active relaxation, or the process of using physical activity to create a sense of peace and purpose, has the power to reduce stress in seniors. Some great examples of active relaxation include practicing yoga, aerobics, pilates, going on a walk, painting, gardening, baking, and dancing. Regardless of a senior's current health and mobility, they can find and engage in activities that they enjoy and create a sense of relaxation.
Improved Cognitive Function
Activity has been shown to improve cognitive function in seniors. In fact, according to the National Institute on Aging, moderate physical activity increases metabolism in the brain, important for learning and memory. Increasing metabolism in the brain can slow down the memory loss that often happens as we age.
At Pleasant Escape, we challenge our residents to pursue activities that they love because we realize that these activities have the power to improve health, build relationships, and create a fun environment for seniors.
Decrease Risk of Falls
Unfortunately, there is no way to completely eliminate the risk of falls, however, taking steps can decrease the risk. Active relaxation can reduce the risk of falls by lowering anxiety and helping seniors remain physically active. A study, performed by The Gerontological Society of America, found that high anxiety can actually increase the risk of a fall by 53%.
Increase Social Engagement
It is no secret that social engagement is important for the health of seniors. In an article, published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), researchers have found a direct correlation between the physical and mental health of seniors and social engagement. Active relaxation allows seniors to pursue the activities that they enjoy doing while, in many cases, engaging with others or nature.
Active relaxation provides many benefits for seniors including stress reduction, improved cognitive function, decreased risk of falls, and increased social engagement. Above all else, it provides seniors with an opportunity to pursue activities that they enjoy and have fun with others. At Pleasant Escape, we love seeing seniors engage with others and continue to be involved in the actives that make them unique.