Wellness is a term that you may have heard, although what is meant by it is not always clear. Its opposite is not sickness, and it isn’t quite the same thing as physical health although that’s one element of it. Wellness is less about treating illness and more about preventing it, and it’s about taking everything about a person into consideration, their social, mental, and emotional health along with the physical. How to best achieve it varies from person to person, and as you get older, your wellness needs may change.
Aging in Place
Being able to stay in your own home as you get older can be a critical element in maintaining wellness. While there are some very pleasant communities for older adults with varying levels of assistance available that may suit some people’s situations well, it’s important that older adults are able to choose freely to move into these types of communities rather than being forced into them because of difficulties at home. If you live in a two-story house and are struggling with stairs or think you might have mobility problems in the future, one potential solution is having a home elevator installed.
A slimline residential elevator can be installed in many different types of structures, and it can give you the freedom to remain at home. Other alterations might include bars in the bathroom to prevent falls, wider doorways if a wheelchair is in use and smart home adaptations so that the thermostat, TV, and other things can be voice-activated.
Loneliness and isolation are not unique to older adults, but seniors can be at greater risk for it. Retirement can initially seem like a great new opportunity, but it’s important that you try to stay connected with friends, family, and community when you’re no longer working. This can be a natural way to ease anxiety and there are many different ways to do this, including volunteering, looking into activities for seniors in your community, or joining a hobby group for all different ages.
Goals and Projects
Another important element of wellness as you get older is continuing to have goals and projects that you can get excited about. This might be related to any number of things, including creative, intellectual, or physical endeavors. You might want to learn to garden, learn a language, teach yourself photography, get a college degree, some states offer free or reduced tuition at colleges for seniors, or take up a sport.
It’s hard to achieve other markers of wellness if you’re worried about finances. Ideally, you’ll have saved enough for retirement, but if that isn’t the case, you still have options. It’s never too late to start saving, and the amount you can contribute to some accounts increases as you get older. Many older adults continue working into their 70s and 80s not just for greater financial security but because they enjoy it. You may want to see a financial professional to discuss whether you are on track for retirement and what steps you could take to improve your position.