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5 Safe Activities for Elderly People with Parkinson’s

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The symptoms of Parkinson’s differ from one senior to the next. However, physicians typically recommend older adults living with the disease remain as active as possible. There are many activities that are safe for seniors living with Parkinson’s.

1. Taking Walks

Walking is a simple activity that also provides many physical benefits. The exercise strengthens the cardiovascular system, which ensures the brain receives the nutrient-rich and oxygen-rich blood needed. When well nourished, neurons are better able to function. Walking also enhances balance, flexibility, and lower body strength. By enhancing their physical ability, seniors with Parkinson’s can reduce the risk of falling. Statistics indicate that 25 percent of older adults fall each year. However, the stiffness, rigidity, and physical limitations that commonly occur in seniors with Parkinson’s makes them particularly susceptible to falls. 

Many seniors in the early stages of Parkinson’s are able to live on their own, but they may need a bit of help to exercise safely. Aging adults who require assistance with the tasks of daily living can benefit from reliable senior care. El Dorado County families trust Home Care Assistance to provide the high-quality care their elderly loved ones need and deserve. Our caregivers are trained to help seniors prevent and manage serious illnesses and encourage them to make healthier decisions as they age.

2. Swimming

Swimming is ideal for older adults who find weight-bearing activities difficult. Consider accompanying your senior loved one to the local municipal pool, or perhaps join a fitness center together that has a pool. Many facilities also offer water aerobics classes. Being in the water reduces stress on joints. However, the water provides sufficient resistance for a cardiovascular and musculoskeletal workout. Swimming also enhances balance and flexibility while reducing physical discomfort.

3. Making Crafts

Creating crafts is a versatile activity that offers many different benefits for seniors with Parkinson’s. Crocheting, knitting, drawing, and painting all require fine motor skills, allowing older adults with Parkinson’s to maintain hand and arm flexibility. The physical movements and visual acuity used to create craft projects also stimulate the brain. Crafting with others offers social enhancement while alleviating stress, and successfully completing a project provides a sense of satisfaction and achievement. Crafting is ideal for helping seniors with Parkinson’s emotionally, mentally, and physically. 

Health issues that arise during the advanced stages of Parkinson’s disease can make caring for seniors increasingly challenging. If you’re the primary family caregiver for a senior loved one living in El Dorado County, live-in care is available if your loved one’s health has become too difficult to manage without professional expertise. At Home Care Assistance, we take measures to help seniors prevent illness and injury by assisting with exercise and mobility, preparing nutritious meals, helping with bathing and other personal hygiene tasks, and much more.

4. Playing Games

Children often enjoy teaching their grandparents how to play video games. On the other hand, seniors commonly offer tips to younger players of board or card games. If able, seniors might consider playing golf, tennis, bocce ball, or other more physically active games. Spending time with loved ones encourages the release of feel-good hormones called endorphins, which play a role in alleviating physical discomfort. The physical and mental functions needed to play games requires stimulating a number of brain regions, which encourages neurotransmitter production and release.

5. Singing Karaoke

People of all ages love music. There are many songs that remain well-known by multiple generations. Consider hosting a karaoke night. Choose music genres, artists, or bands your loved one might enjoy and that are appropriate for all age groups. Encourage your loved one to sing. The act of singing strengthens the vocal cords, which are also affected by Parkinson’s disease at some point in time. If your loved one is physically able, encourage dancing with other family members as each takes a turn vocalizing.

Caring for a loved one with Parkinson’s can be extremely challenging, and a compassionate, professional caregiver can be a wonderful source of support. If your elderly loved one is living with a serious medical condition and needs help managing the tasks of daily living, reach out to Home Care Assistance, an El Dorado County at-home care agency you can trust. Our caregivers are available 24/7, there are no hidden fees in our contracts, and we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all of our in-home care services. Call Home Care Assistance at (916) 358-3801 or (530) 409-4411 to learn more about our flexible and customizable senior care plans.