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Maintaining Our Mental Health as We Age

Over the last 20 years, the emphasis on mental health has been enormous. With good reason, too! Many people, irrespective of their social background, their age, or their social status, experience poor mental health, and so talking more openly and shedding light on common problems has helped many people to seek help and encourage a better understanding of mental health conditions in the population as a whole.

A lot of emphasis on improving mental health has been aimed at younger people. However, it should come as no surprise that older people also suffer from mental health problems and perhaps are less aware of how to recognise them and seek help when needed.

So, here you will be guided through some of the steps that will help you to maintain better mental health as you get older.

Have a Social Life

If you are alone or rarely socialise, then your mental health is likely to be poor. Humans are sociable creatures and need regular contact with others.

Even those who are introverted need to meet up with friends once in a while to chat. Living at residences like Signature at Reigate Grange is hugely beneficial as it allows residents to interact with many people, as much or as little as they like or need. You can aim to meet up with friends once a week and make a day of it. You can go shopping or go to get lunch and then spend the afternoon chatting!

Stay Physically Active

Getting older brings a lot of challenges, with one being soreness in the joints and fatigue. However, staying sedentary for long periods of time will not only cause you to gain weight and potentially worsen sore joints, it is also not great for your mental health. Try to stay active; even walking for 20 minutes a day can help! If you are a fan of swimming, why not go to your local swimming pool? If you love the outdoors, it can be worth joining a rambling group.

Eat Well

As people age, their nutritional needs change. Yes, it can be tempting to eat salty or sugary foods that you will be more likely to taste, but these aren’t great for your mental health. Unless you are on medication that prohibits it, try to engage in the Mediterranean diet; lots of healthy oils, fats, and vegetables, which will help boost your energy and improve your mood. Eating little meals but often can help to keep nutrition levels high without causing digestive problems.

If you are having issues with eating due to dental issues or swallowing, please talk to a medical professional.

Cut Down on Smoking and Drinking

Irrespective of age, smoking and drinking are not good for you, let alone your mental health.

Drinking alcohol excessively alters your brain chemistry and is also a depressant; which is not helpful if you are looking to improve your mental health. Smoking is also addictive and can lead to depressive episodes when the stimulant effect wears off.

So, if you are a smoker or drinker, it can be worth seeking medical help to kick the habits and feel better in your physical and mental health.

Get Enough Sleep

Ideally, an adult will get between 7-9 hours sleep a night. If you have found that as you age, sleeping has become harder, then please talk to your doctor. Sleep deprivation will have an intensely negative impact on your mental and physical health and can also point to an underlying health condition.