Managing spine disorders is often more difficult for seniors than it is for younger adults, which makes it especially important for people over 65 to take care of their spines. There are a variety of preventive measures your elderly loved one can take to maintain a healthy spine, and the Waterloo caregivers at Home Care Assistance offer 5 suggestions.
1. Experiment with Different Bedding Types
Changing your loved one’s bedding may help protect his or her spine and increase his or her overall comfort. As a general rule, seniors should use semi-firm pillows and mattresses that offer maximum support. If your loved one is a side sleeper, placing a pillow between the legs can help take pressure off of the spine.
2. Go Swimming
Many seniors find it difficult to perform exercises that challenge their core, which increases their risk of back injuries. Swimming is a great low-impact exercise that can strengthen your loved one’s abdomen, flanks, and lower back. Options such as water aerobics and lap swimming can also boost his or her heart health and keep his or her weight under control.
3. Schedule a Gait Analysis
Walking in the wrong shoes over a long period can lead to some serious health concerns. If your loved one’s primary doctor does not offer gait analysis services, search for a local running store. Many of these companies have gait analysis systems that determine exactly what shoes and soles people need according to their body mechanics.
4. Get Regular Massages
Due to recent studies showing the benefits of regular massages, many insurance companies now cover massage services. Massages trigger the release of endorphins, and they also increase blood flow to the spine. Though every chiropractor has different philosophies, your loved one may benefit from getting a professional massage at least once a month.
5. Stand Up and Move More Often
A sedentary lifestyle can be harmful to the musculoskeletal system, which is why it is important for your loved one to stand up and move around every 30 or 45 minutes to take pressure off of his or her spine. Forgetful seniors should wear a watch or keep an alarm clock next to their favorite chair and try to do a lap around the block or walk through the home once an hour.
Learn more about senior health and wellness by calling Home Care Assistance at (519) 954-2111 today. Our dedicated caregivers provide the home care KW seniors need by assisting with exercise and mobility, providing transportation to medical appointments, and helping with a wide variety of important tasks. For more information on the home care Waterloo seniors rely on, reach out to one of our experienced Care Managers and schedule a free in-home consultation.