Step into almost any store at this time of the year and you’ll be overwhelmed with displays of sale-priced school bags, pens, notebooks, and lunchboxes – and aisles filled with parents scrambling to check off all the items found on the kids’ back-to-school supply lists.
And while we may associate the new school year with children, senior education programs provide lifelong learning opportunities and can benefit older adults in various ways, such as:
- Improved cognitive functioning. Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital just recently paired up to undertake research on the result of intellectual stimulation through the entire lifetime of older adults, and found a pronounced decrease in memory problems like those displayed in Alzheimer’s disease. In addition to that, a separate study through the University of Texas at Dallas took it a step further, learning that older adults who participated in a new, mentally-stimulating hobby actually achieved a lasting boost in their memory skills.
- Increased physical and mental health. Continuing to learn is linked to a diminished rate of depression and anxiety, including a lowered rate of numerous chronic conditions like diabetes, stroke, emphysema, cardiovascular disease, ulcers, asthma, and more. And simply reading for as little as 6 minutes helps lessen stress through lowering our heart rate and reducing muscle tension, leading to lower blood pressure levels, improved cardiovascular health, and a more robust and efficient immune system.
- Enhanced socialization. Of specific concern in the elderly is the tendency for isolation. Taking classes allows for the feeling of community and camaraderie that is so essential to our all-around wellbeing, in addition to the possibility to form long-term friendships with people who share similar interests.
Along with onsite classes, there are limitless opportunities to learn online, in the comfort of home. And in many instances, online classes might be offered at no cost, or at a reduced rate for seniors who are not seeking to earn academic credits. Older adults can select from many different topics of interest, and work at their own pace and based on their own schedule. AARP offers a listing of a number of the top e-learning websites for seniors here, that range from cooking tips to learning new languages, computer programming, musical skills, and a lot more.
Hearts at Home In-Home Care, the senior care Overland Park, KS families trust, is dedicated to ensuring senior loved ones maximize quality of life each and every day, and we take pleasure in supplying the help needed to promote lifelong learning. Our compassionate care staff is able to help research classes of interest, set up online programs, provide transportation and accompaniment to onsite classes, and even take care of housework, meals, and laundry to enable seniors to concentrate on their newfound passion!
Reach out via our online contact form or call us any time at 913-440-4209 to learn more about our services in senior care in Overland Park, KS and the surrounding area, and how to help a senior loved one in your life take the initial step towards a richer and healthier lifestyle.