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July 6, 2016

The Benefits of Going Outside for Caregivers and Seniors

The Benefits of Going Outside for Caregivers and Seniors

benefits of going outside for caregivers and seniors

We constantly hear ‘Get outside and get some fresh air!’ and there are many good reasons for that! For seniors, who may have been cooped-up inside for the past few months, it is particularly important in order to benefit their mental and physical health. For caregivers whose lives may primarily revolve around taking care of others, it is equally important for them to take some time to relax.

Spending moderate time outside under the sun’s rays is particularly beneficial because of the Vitamin D that our bodies get exposed to. Vitamin D is necessary for normal functioning of the brain, bones and our muscles. This vitamin is vital for everyone, but especially seniors who are more prone to falls and injuries.

When we get a chance to be outdoors in beautiful weather, we typically see other people doing the same thing which is a great opportunity for us and our senior loved ones to socialize and interact with others. Whether it’s with other adults, children or pets, being around others and avoiding isolation can be beneficial to our health.

Getting outside can be a challenge for some seniors and it is important for caregivers to be aware of the obstacles that could be faced when venturing outdoors. These may include wheelchair and bathroom access, frailty and fatigue, and other mobility issues which caregivers can consult the doctor about.

It is also important for seniors to stay hydrated in these pleasant but also dangerous temperatures. If they become dehydrated, their muscle function and blood pressure could be negatively affected which is why caregivers need to be on-top of their senior loved one’s water intake.

Now for the fun part! There are loads of activities to do as caregivers and seniors, which can vary depending on interests and physical and mental abilities. The time outside can be spent fishing, taking a dip in a pool, enjoying a picnic or bird-watching. For more mobile people, they can go for a leisurely bike ride, fly a kite or take a brisk walk.

If you are unable to spend time as you would like with the seniors in your life, don’t forget there are options! You can hire in-home caregivers to be there when you can’t to make sure your loved ones get the chance to go outdoors in a safe and secure setting.