Although mental health is an essential issue for people of all ages, aging adults are at more risk due to the natural aging process. Many people do their best to take care of their aging parents’ physical needs, but few are well-equipped to take care of the mental aspect. With the elderly being at a high risk of mental harm, knowing how to take care of their mental well-being is very important. You need to know what to look out for and how best to manage any mental health challenges that may arise. So if you’re wondering how you can best maintain their mental health, take a look at these suggestions below.
1. Identify the Signs
The first thing to do if you have an aging parent is to identify any signs of mental illness. You can start by looking out for specific changes in their behaviors or personality. Once you notice these changes, it is crucial to seek the assistance of mental health professionals immediately. These professionals can diagnose and identify the exact mental illness your parents may be experiencing. Here are the main signs to look out for:
- Difficulty in recollecting daily events and names
- Trouble sleeping
- Loss of appetite
- Regular lack of attention
- Constantly feeling tired
- Feelings of helplessness and worthlessness
- Persistent feeling of sadness, numbness, and anxiety
2. Brain Food and Exercise
For many adults, memory loss is a natural process that comes with age. However, the right diet and exercise can help slow down the process significantly. We can also use brain food as a protective mechanism to reduce the risk of certain mental illnesses like dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Diets rich in brain food that are essential for promoting brain health include avocados, salmon, green leafy vegetables, blueberries, and sunflower seeds.
In addition to a brain diet, aging adults need to get as much age-appropriate exercise as possible. Regular exercise produces ‘feel good’ hormones responsible for making us feel happy by acting as stress relievers. This is especially important for adults, as it helps them get better sleep while reducing stress.
3. Find Senior Caregivers
Everybody needs an extra hand, and no matter our best efforts, there may be days when you will require the assistance of professional caregivers. This form of professional help is advantageous since most senior caregivers have a lot of experience taking care of aging adults with mental health challenges. Plus, they can be incredibly beneficial for adults diagnosed with mental illnesses. But you do not need to wait that long to hire their services, as senior caregivers are experienced in providing the kind of care required to lower the risks of possible mental health issues.
Websites such as careasone.com make it easy for you to find reliable caregivers for your parents. However, it is essential to first have a conversation with both your parents and other family members to be sure that everyone is on board with the idea before hiring the service of a professional caregiver.