Aging in Place: Garden Safety Tips for Seniors
For older adults, gardening is good for both your body and mind. It provides exercise while the tasks associated with it and the end results improve your quality of life. However, it is important not to overdo it. Accidents and injuries you suffer while gardening could impact your mobility and hasten the need for nursing home care. The following highlights some of the health benefits of gardening for seniors and simple tips to protect yourself in the process.
Benefits of Gardening for Seniors
At Cavallo & Cavallo, we help people plan for the future, which includes assessing any needs they are likely to have as they age. With older adults, the desire to remain in their homes for as long as possible and to enjoy an active, independent lifestyle is a top priority. In addition to improving their overall quality of life, this can help to prevent them from having to pay the high costs of nursing home care.
As a hobby, Senior Living recommends gardening for the health benefits it provides. These include:
- Alleviates stress: Gardening helps lower cortisol levels, alleviating stress and reducing your risks for high blood pressure;
- Reduces depression: Gardening increases serotonin levels, a ‘feel-good’ chemical produced in the brain, decreasing feelings of depression.
- Lowers dementia risks: The hand/eye coordination gardening requires and the sensory effects it provides stimulate the brain, lowering your dementia risks.
- Boosts immunity: Friendly bacteria found in garden dirt can boost your immune system.
When done safely, gardening also provides a good form of exercise for seniors. Bending, stretching, and pulling weeds can increase your flexibility and overall body strength.
Gardening Safety for Seniors: Reducing Your Injury Risks
Gardening offers physical and emotional health benefits for seniors while providing fresh fruits, flowers, and vegetables to enjoy throughout the year. At the same time, the website How Does Your Garden Mow warns older adults against overexerting themselves. Pushing yourself too hard can result in accidental injuries and medical conditions that impact your health and mobility, hastening your need for nursing home care. To protect your safety, follow these tips:
- Dress properly for the temperature: When gardening outdoors in the fall, winter, or early spring, make sure you are properly dressed for the cold. Use sun protection in the summer and take frequent rest breaks somewhere in the shade.
- Wear gloves: Gardening gloves can help prevent cuts or scrapes, which could end up becoming infected. They can also protect you against chemical additives you may be exposed to.
- Know your limits: Avoid pushing yourself, which can lead to overexertion and increases your accident risks.
If an accident does occur or you experience any unusual symptoms while gardening, seek medical treatment right away.
Let Us Help You Today
As your neighborhood law firm, Cavallo & Cavallo offers guidance in protecting your quality of life and in planning for your future. Call or contact our Bronx & New Rochelle Medicaid and nursing home attorneys online and request a consultation in our office today.