Improving your Parents’ Mobility
Most of us get to a stage where we have elderly parents or grandparents with reduced mobility who need our help. For some of us, this happens very early in life and others are lucky and have fit and healthy parents or grandparents for longer.
When the time comes, there are ways that we can help our elderly family members with decreased mobility to help them stay as strong as possible and be able to continue the activities that they enjoy in life for longer.
There are many reasons why a decrease in mobility happens — it can simply be age, muscle weakness, joint problems or more serious things like pain, diseases or neurological conditions that impact and hinder mobility.
Of course, this can be frustrating for the person affected as everyday tasks become more difficult but there are ways to be proactive to address these issues before they become too big a problem.
Below are some tips for improving mobility in the elderly:
Remaining active and exercising regularly is the best way to help the body stay strong, get stronger and remain limber. It doesn’t have to be a lot — just a few walks a week and consciously choosing to stay active by moving around the house and doing regular household chores, for example.
Balance is also an important aspect of mobility and there are simple exercises that you can do to help improve balance, like back leg raises or walking heel to toe.
Another thing that is crucial to good mobility and balance is good vision so encourage your elderly parent to go for regular check-ups at the opticians and to keep glasses or contacts prescriptions up to date.
Eating a healthy diet can also improve your vision and will help keep energy levels up too which is needed for anyone to stay active throughout the day. Many elderly people simply don’t eat enough or don’t eat proper meals so encourage elderly family members to eat well, cook for them or take them out for something to eat.
- Ensure Comfort & Avoid Falls
Comfortable and supportive shoes that fit well are so important and will help anyone who wants to stay active and mobile.
It can be a good idea to install handles or handlebars on walls around the house to help stability when walking around. This is something that really helped my dad stay mobile.
For longer outings or when needed, a walking aid or a Mobility Scooter can be very useful to help avoid falls and exhaustion. It’s of course important to keep challenging yourself and keep trying to build your strength but it’s also crucial to understand your own limits and boundaries and asking and using help when you need it.
Following the advice in this article should hopefully be useful for you when you’re trying to help an elderly parent or grandparent stay healthy and mobile. Every little helps and it’s so important to not give up and do what you can to encourage good health and an active lifestyle no matter what your age is.