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Why Reading Often Is a Fantastic Activity for Older Adults

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Reading is more than a form of entertainment for older adults. The hobby can provide many mental, emotional, and physical benefits as well. You should encourage your senior loved one to read, even if it’s only for a few minutes each day or a couple of hours per week. Here are some benefits seniors can receive when they read more often.

Boosts Decision-Making Abilities

Seniors may encounter various issues and situations that require them to act quickly, and this applies to everyday tasks like driving, taking medications, cooking, cleaning, and paying bills. Since fluid intelligence decreases with age, it’s essential to continue doing activities that strengthen analytical abilities, such as reading. The material your loved one reads can provide more insight to use in his or her daily life. Reading may also boost your loved one’s reasoning skills and help him or her solve problems with less difficulty. 

For seniors with health limitations such as severe arthritis or diminished eyesight that make it difficult to read printed books, listening to audiobooks can be enjoyable. Aging in place can present a few unique challenges for older adults. Some only require part-time assistance with exercise or meal preparation, while others are living with serious illnesses and benefit more significantly from receiving live-in care. Scottsdale, AZ, Home Care Assistance are leaders in the elderly in-home care industry for good reason. We tailor our care plans based on each senior’s individual needs, our caregivers continue to receive updated training in senior care as new developments arise, and we also offer comprehensive care for seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s.

Reduces Stress Levels

A few minutes of reading could lower your loved one’s anxiety levels and help him or her feel better mentally and emotionally. Reading takes the focus off negative and stressful thoughts. When engaged in a story, your loved one’s attention will be on the people in the reading material instead of the situations he or she is currently facing in life. As your parent continues to read, the muscles in his or her body may relax, and his or her heart rate might decrease. When searching for reading material, find something to capture your loved one’s attention, whether it’s a best-selling novel, a cookbook, or the local journal.

Wards Off Memory Loss

Reading is a mentally engaging hobby that can stave off dementia and Alzheimer’s disease and challenge the mind. When reading, the brain builds neuronal connections and delays memory loss. Strengthening the neurons can alleviate many of the symptoms associated with memory loss conditions, allowing your loved one to remain independent. The more often seniors read, the more brain structures they can preserve and the lower their risk of developing dementia or Alzheimer’s will be. 

A professional caregiver with training and expertise in methods of cognitive stimulation can also help your loved one strengthen memory skills. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of senior home care. Scottsdale families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia.

Enhances Sleep Quality

Cognitive decline and chronic physical issues can make it difficult for seniors to fall asleep. However, reading more often could enhance your parent’s sleep quality and reduce the risk of restless nights. While reading, the brain signals alert the body that it’s time to relax. Choose books and reading devices that are easy to navigate and don’t strain the eyes. The objective of bedtime reading is to relax the body and positively affect sleep quality.

Strengthens Relationships

Reading often can increase empathy in older adults, helping them understand and relate to the feelings of others. Many fictional books and some nonfiction literature provide emotionally engaging storylines that appeal to elderly readers. The exposure to the various cultures, religions, and beliefs detailed in the stories may provide your loved one with a new perspective. He or she can connect and empathize with others, strengthening new and old relationships.

Mentally engaging activities such as reading help seniors boost their mental and emotional wellbeing. Living alone at home in the golden years can present a few unique challenges. Trust Scottsdale elderly home care professionals to help your senior loved one maintain a higher quality of life while he or she manages an illness and performs the daily tasks of living. If your loved one needs professional care, Home Care Assistance is here to help. Call one of our dedicated Care Managers today at 480.448.6215 to learn about the high quality of our in-home care services.