Ageing Well – looking after your health


Ageing Well - Looking after health

As we grow older, taking care of our health becomes increasingly important. Ageing well means living life to the fullest, staying active, and maintaining our independence. Whether you’re already enjoying your golden years or planning ahead, here are some tips.

Key tips to ensure you age well and healthily in the UK

 

1. Attend Regular Health Screenings

Regular health screenings are vital for early detection and prevention of potential health issues. The NHS offers several free screenings for older adults, including:

  • Blood pressure checks: High blood pressure can lead to serious conditions such as heart disease and stroke.
  • Cholesterol tests: High cholesterol levels can increase your risk of cardiovascular diseases.
  • Diabetes screenings: Early detection of diabetes can help manage the condition effectively and prevent complications.
  • Cancer screenings: Routine screenings for bowel, breast, and cervical cancer are available and can save lives by detecting cancer early.

Don’t wait for symptoms to appear. Regular check-ups with your GP can catch problems early, ensuring you get the treatment you need when it’s most effective.

 

2. Get Your eyesight and hearing tested

Our senses can decline with age, but regular tests can help maintain good vision and hearing:

  • Eyesight: Have your eyes tested at least every two years. Opticians can detect early signs of eye conditions such as glaucoma, cataracts, and age-related macular degeneration. 
  • Hearing: Hearing loss is common as we age, but many people don’t realise they have it. If you notice difficulty hearing conversations, especially in noisy environments, get a hearing test. 

Clear vision and good hearing are essential for maintaining independence and quality of life, so don’t ignore these important aspects of your health.

 

3. Stay active

Regular physical activity is crucial for keeping your body strong and flexible, reducing the risk of chronic diseases, and boosting mental health. Here are some tips to stay active:

  • Daily Exercise: Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week, such as brisk walking, cycling, or swimming.
  • Strength Training: Include activities that strengthen muscles, such as lifting weights or yoga, at least twice a week.
  • Balance and Flexibility: Practices like tai chi and Pilates can help maintain balance and prevent falls.

If you’re not used to exercising, start slowly and gradually increase your activity level. Find activities you enjoy, whether it’s gardening, dancing, or joining a local walking group. Staying active is not just about physical health; it’s also great for mental well-being. You can read more about physical activity on the Ageing Well section of our website.

 

4. Be sociable

Staying socially active is just as important as physical activity to maintain a good quality of life. Social interactions can improve mental health, reduce feelings of loneliness, and enhance your sense of purpose. Here’s how to stay connected:

  • Join clubs or groups: Whether it’s a book club, gardening group, or sports team, joining clubs can help you meet new people and develop new interests.
  • Volunteer: Giving back to the community can be incredibly fulfilling and a great way to meet like-minded individuals.
  • Stay in touch: Regularly connect with family and friends, whether through phone calls, video chats, or social media. Face-to-face interactions are ideal, so make time for regular meet-ups.

You can read more about how social connections can help you to slow down cognitive decline in later life on the Ageing Well section of our website. 

 

5. Eat a balanced diet

A healthy diet is crucial for maintaining energy levels, preventing chronic diseases and healthy living. Focus on:

  • Plenty of fruits and vegetables: Aim for at least five portions a day.
  • Whole grains: Choose whole grain bread, pasta, and cereals.
  • Lean proteins: Incorporate fish, chicken, beans, and nuts.
  • Limit sugars and saturated fats: Avoid excessive sweets, sugary drinks, and fatty meats.

You can read more about nutrition for the elderly on our resources pages. You should consult with a nutritionist if you need personalised dietary advice.

 

6. Stay hydrated

Drinking enough water is essential for overall health. Aim to drink about six to eight glasses of water a day. Proper hydration helps with digestion, nutrient absorption, and joint lubrication.

 

7. Manage stress

Chronic stress can take a toll on your health. Practice stress-relieving activities such as:

  • Meditation: Daily meditation can help calm the mind.
  • Yoga: Combining physical postures, breathing exercises, and meditation.
  • Hobbies: Engage in activities you enjoy, like painting, knitting, or gardening.

 

8. Get enough sleep

Quality sleep is vital for physical and mental health. Ensure you:

  • Stick to a sleep schedule: Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day.
  • Create a relaxing bedtime routine: Wind down with a book or soothing music.
  • Make your bedroom comfortable: Keep it dark, quiet, and cool.

Consult your GP if you have trouble sleeping.

 

9. Keep your brain active

Mental stimulation is key to cognitive health and ageing well. Engage in activities that challenge your brain:

  • Puzzles and games: Crosswords, sudoku, and card games.
  • Learn new skills: Take up a new hobby or learn a new language.
  • Reading: Read books, articles, or join a book club.

Staying mentally active helps maintain memory and cognitive function in later years.

 

10. Regularly check your medication

As we age, it’s common to take multiple medications. Ensure you:

  • Review medications regularly: Discuss with your GP or pharmacist to avoid adverse interactions.
  • Follow dosage instructions: Take medications as prescribed.
  • Dispose of old medications: Safely discard expired or unused medications.

Proper medication management is crucial for avoiding complications and maintaining health.

Ageing Well - Looking after health - opticians
Ageing Well - Looking after health

About Bright Care

At Bright Care, our companionship style of care helps to promote a healthy living and brings joy and purpose to later years. Our fully trained Carers develop meaningful relationships with their clients, improving their quality of life. They also help practically with preparing healthy meals and encourage participation in physical movement and engaging hobbies helping their clients age well. 

Please call us on 0330 024 1327 or complete our contact form to find out more about our experienced Carers providing at home care.

If you are looking for a rewarding career in care, please apply now