A lot can change in our lives as we age, but that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. With some practical tips and advice, your quality of life can be just as good when you are eighty as it was when you were forty. For those of us able to live more independently in our golden years, the advice in the article can help get the most out of this wonderful time of life.
Senior Independent Living Tip #1: Get a Cell Phone
Phones have never been easier to use, and have never before housed so many features. There is no advanced technological know-how needed to use them, and everything happens by simply pressing the colorful app buttons.
There are three main reasons why older adults and seniors who care about their independent living options should have a smartphone, or at least a cell phone:
The obvious advantage of a cell phone is the constant availability between yourself, family and friends, and even your other caregivers. You will be able to call whoever you want and whenever you want, regardless if you need some assistance or you just want to stay in touch.
Additionally, smartphones which have “smart” assistants don’t even need you to find the number of the person you want to call; you can simply instruct Google or Siri to call whoever you want by using your voice!
A smartphone is a great way for you to remind yourself when you need to take some medication, or if you have something planned. Also, you can place your shopping lists and other reminders on the phone to be shown to you whenever you need them. Once again, you can simply tell your “smart” assistant to remind you of something. For example, say, “Hey Siri, remind me to take my medication at 8:30 PM” and the phone will remind you.
Social media is the easiest way to stay in touch with your family and friends and to be up to date about everything that is going on in your community. You may find some old friends that you haven’t talked to in a while, or see what your grandkids are up to.
Senior Independent Living Tip #2: Bathing and Grooming Assistance
Depending on your situation, there are different options that you can use to simplify your hygiene and improve your ability to live independently.
For seniors who are active and mobile, there are different types of handles and seats that can be installed in the bathroom that will prevent any injury while bathing. Simple showerheads, rubber flooring, as well as a bathtub seat can be a great choice.
For more cosmetic purposes, there are on-demand beauty services that will help you with your hair, skin, manicure, pedicure, all sorts of other requirements. These professionals can come wherever you are and help you with your health and well-being, as well as beauty.
If you are in a wheelchair or otherwise incapacitated, there are trained medical professionals for in-home care that can assist you with all of your bathing and grooming. These professionals should have a detailed list of all of your needs so that they can be prepared for all scenarios.
And of course, if you are considering moving into an assisted living community you will receive all the help you need with each of these things. Many of our communities even have built-in beauty salons!
Senior Independent Living Tip #3: Prepare Your Meals
Regardless if you are living alone, with a partner, in assisted living, or in senior independent living communities, you will find multiple benefits of planning and preparing their meals ahead of time. Meal prep is an excellent way to take care of your health and avoid the common trap of eating unhealthily due to lack of options.
Additionally, there are options now to get entire meal packages delivered to your doorstep, including both the ingredients and the recipes. These meal services include all kinds of diets and dishes, and there is something out there for anyone. If you’re living in a retirement community, consider splitting the costs of one of these meal plans with your neighbor! It’s a great way to save money while being social.
Aside from particular medical diets, there are also excellent chef meals on offer, like those from Martha Stewart’s Kitchen. These meals require minimal cooking experience and only rudimentary kitchen tools.
Senior Independent Living Tip #4: Join a Community
One of the worst things about retirement is the lack of human interaction we get on a daily basis. While the elderly still have interactions with medical professionals or their family, that is not the same as being in contact with your peers.
Someone using a senior care facility, a senior living community, or something similar will definitely have opportunities to talk and interact with people. For anyone who isn’t in such a community, consider joining a local community of your peers. Many typical daily activities can be enjoyed with peers even in the later stages of life, and staying social will have a big impact on your health and wellbeing.
Senior Independent Living Tip #5: Modify Your Environment
The reason why we are even able to live to our old age now is that we fought for the rights and comforts in the past, and won. You should always stay comfortable and modify your environment to get the most out of your living situation as possible.
If getting up the stairs in apartments or your specific living facility is hard on your knees, you can install a personal lift. If you lose your balance easily, round up and rubberize all corners. Set pillows and furniture to make it easier to get around. Talking with your family about the floor plans of any living communities you’re considering, in conjunction with your personal needs, is a great place to start. Anything you can do to make your life as easy as possible, you should do.
If you save your time and energy by making your surroundings fit your needs, you will be able to use that energy to do the things you love.
Senior Independent Living Tip #6: Be Clear and Concise
While this tip is not exclusive to seniors, it is something to remember at any age and will help you regardless of your health, ability, or lifestyle. Be clear and concise when you speak and do so openly and without hesitation.
As a senior citizen, it is normal to have various tasks where you need assistance. Calmly and politely ask someone to help you and explain why you need assistance. While you can use your mobile phone to ask for support from your family and caregivers, most strangers will also be happy to help whenever they can.
If you have an assistant or a nurse tending to your needs, make a full list of needs that they can follow. Ask them to go over the list with you to make sure they are clear about all points. This is particularly helpful with continuing care in an assisted living community but is also great when you’re considering long-term care in something like independent living apartments for seniors.
Good communication is the basis of all relationships, and we should all do as much as we can to help others understand us.
As the years come and go, it will become normal for us to have trouble living the life we are used to. From various medical needs to our children moving and getting lives of their own, we can’t expect everything to be the same. But, we can adapt and have a successful senior independent living experience with just a few tips.
The best way to keep ourselves content is to be engaged in the communities that interest us, to stay in touch with family and friends, and to have a productive relationship with nurses and caregivers that assist us. If you take advantage of independent living communities, push yourself to engage in community activities, health and wellness programs, and any other amenities that are made available to you.
With these tips and ideas, you will be able to enjoy life as much as possible and to prove to the world that you are not getting old, just overly experienced.