New Year's Resolutions Bring New Opportunities
With the start of a new year, many take part in a long standing tradition of setting New Year’s resolutions. For some, this means continuing a good practice or changing a behavior.
This is a good time to take steps to become and stay healthy, especially for caregivers and older adults. The American Geriatrics Society’s Health in Aging Foundation and the National Institute on Aging recommend a few New Year’s resolutions for healthy aging, including:
-Making healthier food choices: Whether recommended by a physician or simply by personal choice, including healthy food choices in your daily diet can help you feel better physically and mentally. Click here to access resources for healthy eating.
-Remaining physically active: Incorporating exercise into everyday activities is an important part of healthy aging. There are a variety of exercises that are suitable for all kinds of fitness levels that can be done individually or in groups. Learn more here.
-Giving your brain a workout: From reading a new book or playing a musical instrument to joining a language club or exercise class, trying new activities can help exercise not only your mind and body but can also bring a new life perspective. Check out some fun activities that are available online.
-Scheduling an annual wellness check-up: At least annually, discuss needed health screenings and any changes in your advance directive with your care provider. At times, older adults are visiting with their care providers due to a specific health issue. Having a complete wellness visit can provide a full picture of one’s health status.
-Discussing your Advance Directive: Making healthcare decisions for yourself or a loved one can feel like an overwhelming process. It is important to understand preferences and desires early on to ensure that everyone is on the same page if a serious illness or need for care transition occurs. Learn more about getting your affairs in order here.
-Evaluating care needs and living environment: Sometimes an older adult's need for additional help is obvious. More often, though, the change happens gradually. Keeping check on mental, physical and environmental conditions are ways to determine appropriate care solutions.
What are your New Year’s resolutions for 2022? Whatever they may be, setting realistic and achievable goals is best. Short-term changes can influence long-term results.