The smell and colors of fresh flowers, fruits, and other plants are pleasing to the senses, but working in a garden can provide older adults with many health benefits. Gardening is a fun activity that can enhance your elderly loved one’s mental, emotional, and physical health. Here are some of the reasons gardening is beneficial for aging adults, brought to you by the staff at Coast Care Partners, a trusted La Mesa home care agency.
1. Boosts Bone Health
While gardening, your loved one will have exposure to the sun that strengthens his or her bones and prevents balance issues. The vitamin D from the sun exposure helps the body absorb calcium, which is necessary for good bone health. Strong bones can prevent slips, falls, and other accidents caused by poor balance and lack of flexibility.
2. Staves Off Memory Loss
Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease are two health conditions that affect many aging adults, but gardening can boost cognitive health. When working in the garden, your loved one will need to use critical thinking skills and short-term memory. Even a short amount of time working in the garden can keep the brain active and enhance memory, staving off dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
3. Enhances Cardiovascular Health
Seniors with circulation issues have a higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease, but engaging in physical exercise can increase blood and oxygen flow and decrease the risk of heart attacks and strokes. Planting in the garden, lifting the tools, and watering the soil and plants can provide the exercise seniors need for the day, leading to better coordination and flexibility.
4. Increases Socialization
Family caregivers should assist their senior loved ones in the garden to prevent safety issues. Gardening is an activity seniors can enjoy with their grandchildren as well. Having someone to work with in the garden provides social interaction that enhances mood and prevents boredom. The better your loved one feels emotionally, the better his or her overall health will be. Socialization is a good way to stave off health issues such as memory loss, heart disease, depression, and obesity.
5. Reduces Joint Pain
The more active adults are in the senior years, the lower their risk of developing osteoporosis. Older adults generally experience issues such as joint pain and muscle tension as they age due to inactivity and other unhealthy habits. However, gardening is a fun activity that can keep seniors active and reduce joint pain. Gardening can take your loved one’s focus off of the pain and tension, allowing him or her to concentrate on caring for the plants. Being outdoors reduces stress and promotes relaxation.
If your aging loved one needs help with gardening tasks or other beneficial physical activities, consider hiring an in-home caregiver. La Mesa, CA, families rely on Coast Care Partners to provide dedicated and compassionate caregivers who help seniors maintain a high quality of life while living in the comfort of home. For more information on our premier senior home care, give us a call today at 619-354-2544.