You might be surprised, but exercise and staying active can be hugely beneficial for your senior if she has dementia. Double check with her doctor before starting her off on an exercise plan, of course, but it can help her to deal with the urge to wander and she just might start to sleep better, too.
Time of Day Matters
There are going to be times of day that are better and worse for your senior in terms of cognitive ability. Take advantage of when she seems to do better with exercise and when rest is more appropriate. Pair activities with the time of day that most suits them for the best results for her and for you.
Simplify Activities as Much as Possible
Confusing, complicated activities are probably not what you want to try if your senior has dementia. Sports or games with lots of rules might be a way to get her moving, but they can also be frustrating if she starts to lose her place within the structure of the sport or game. It’s much better to keep things as simple as you can.
Look at Workouts More Like Movement
Toward that end, start looking at exercise and at workouts in terms of just moving more. What you’re aiming for here isn’t that your senior hits a certain time as she jogs a mile. It’s really about helping her to keep the muscle tone she has and to exercise her heart and lungs. Really all that requires is moving a little every day.
Make Exercise Comfortable and Non-threatening
When exercise is something that is non-threatening and is comfortable for your elderly family member, she’s going to be much more interested in it. Make sure she’s got the clothing and the shoes that she needs to be comfortable and safe. Also, if there are any safety tools necessary, like a helmet, make sure that it’s comfortable for your senior. Sometimes safety gear can cause your senior to experience sensory overload.
Make Exercise a Social Activity
If exercise is a social event for your senior, that might help her to enjoy it a little bit more. That might mean finding a senior center that has a walking group or joining a senior-centered exercise class. If you’re able to exercise with her, that’s a great opportunity for you both to bond.
For exercise plans that are away from home, elder care providers can handle transportation for your senior. That way she can focus on moving more and having fun, while they ensure that she gets there and back safely.
Excerpt: Exercise is great for seniors, even seniors who have dementia.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Elder Care in Perry, FL, please call the caring staff at Hopewell In-Home Senior Care today at 850-386-5552. Providing Senior Care Services in North Florida.
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