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Therapeutic Activities for Seniors

Assisted care facilities are aware of the benefits of different therapies for seniors. Some of these promote physical aspects, such as pool yoga, and mental wellbeing. We look at three of the less commonly used therapies that are starting to generate interest due to their effects on the whole person.

Animal Therapy

Animal therapy involves providing a loved one with a domestic pet, such as a cat or dog. By having to care for another being, the older person feels needed. It also helps stave off feelings of loneliness, isolation, anxiety, stress, and depression. Additionally, it improves motor skills, lowers blood pressure, and encourages seniors to get some exercise. This therapy has been used with patients that have dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. It is becoming more common for assisted living facilities to offer this option. Read here to decide on the best pet for a specific elderly person.

Music Therapy

As everyone has different tastes in music, seniors must get to listen to the music of their choice. Participants will need headphones and a suitable mobile. Wi-Fi must be provided. Make sure seating is comfortable, ideally armchairs. For further research about aged care homes in Melbourne be sure to visit Medical & Aged Care Group.

Ask seniors to find songs from their twenties and allow memories of the past to emerge. Let the activity continue as long as you can see that residents are engaged. Once they lose focus on the exercise, end the session. 

Music therapy stimulates mental cognition, which in turn activates the body. It decreases pain, anxiety, and depression and improves self-esteem. This therapy is also good for heart health and a strong immune system, balance, hormone levels, and PTSD. Additionally, it boosts melatonin that aids sleep and stirs up lost memories. Music therapy is relaxing and an enjoyable way to spend time.

Art Therapy

Art therapy has been successfully used with Alzheimer’s patients and seniors who have been exposed to trauma. It provides an alternative mode of communication for those with limited ability after e.g., a stroke. Interestingly, it helps with memory recall. Other benefits are decreased depression and stress, better cognitive function, overcoming traumatic events, and improved coordination.

Allow seniors to guide the process. Provide sufficient alternatives for those with limited movement and experienced artists who may have lost touch with this side of themselves. Make sure art supplies are non-toxic. Give them a theme to work with, such as their childhood home.

Restorative Therapy

A restorative therapy plan is devised after the patient has been examined by their physician. Thus, it is tailored to the individual. The core of the plan is an exercise program as developed by restorative therapy and aims to improve walking, stair climbing, transferring from a wheelchair to a bed or vice versa, range of motion, and strength. Physical movement is emphasized.

The benefits of restorative therapy are many. Seniors are assisted to regain their independence. It makes patients more mobile and better to take care of themselves, thus restoring dignity. Patients experience an improvement in their quality of life.

It is hoped that more carers and facilities will implement these therapies and create new ones. 

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