Many people fear they will outlive their savings, but what defines a “comfortable life” differs for each person.
By 2030, WHO predicts that one in every six individuals will be over 60 years of age, and many will be retired from full-time work according to Intelligent Living’s recent article entitled “Elder Care 101: Lifestyle Basics for Senior Citizens to Live a Comfortable Life” .
Last year, 14.7 million or 28% of the older adults in the United States were reported to be living alone, and the COVID-19 pandemic made it more difficult to maintain independence and interpersonal connections.
A few changes can make a big impact in your ability to live a comfortable, meaningful life. Here are some factors that can help enrich your life.
Transportation. Reports say that more than 600,000 older individuals stop driving every year. That doesn’t mean that seniors have to withdraw from their activities. It just means they need to take advantage of other types of transportation. Many cities or counties provide no or low cost transportation, especially to medical appointments or to a senior activity center. Ride sharing companies like Uber and Lyft have made transportation available in most urban and suburban communities. Medical transportation service providers arrange non-emergency medical transport with just a call.
Mobility. One of the most important aspects of daily life is the ability to moving around in your environment. If you can’t move around comfortably—even in your own home—it will get frustrating and impact your quality of life. Whatever your current level of mobility, stay as active as you can. Participate in physical fitness activities in person or online. If you’ve had a recent illness or hospitalization, see if you qualify to receive outpatient or in-home physical therapy. Make modifications, like widening doorways, and installing grab bars or railings, to your home to improve safety and increase accessibility. Mobility supports like walkers and wheel chairs can make more areas accessible.
Medication. It is not unusual for an older adult to be on 10 or more medications. It is important that medications are taken as directed and evaluated by your pharmacist and physician regularly. All medications have side-effects, and many have negative interactions with foods or other medications. Talk with your doctors and pharmacist to ensure you are only on the necessary medications. They may also be able to help you identify lower cost options for your prescriptions. Medication organizers, devices, and services can help ensure you take the right medication at the right time.
Nutrition. You can’t overestimate the impact of good nutrition on health. Sometimes it can be difficult to sort out conflicting advice about what constitutes a healthy died. In general it’s best to limit processed foods and eat more fruits and vegetables. Work with your doctor to understand any specific diet suggestions related to your health diagnoses. Look for meals offered at senior activity centers or home-delivered meals to add variety and socialization to your diet. You could join a supper club, or attend a lunch and learn to combine nutrition with socializing.
These are a few of the most basic lifestyle care changes that van help you lead a more comfortable life.
Reference: Intelligent Living (March 11, 2022) “Elder Care 101: Lifestyle Basics for Senior Citizens to Live a Comfortable Life”