5 Ways Regular Reading Can Benefit Aging Adults

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Regular Reading Can Benefit Aging Adults Arlington VA

Reading is a great way to exercise the brain. Whether a senior prefers romance novels or nonfiction books on military history, the brain is always getting a workout. Here are several reasons seniors should become voracious readers in their golden years. 

1. Reduce Stress Levels

Seniors who are experiencing stress or anxiety should turn to books, as they’re an effective way to relieve stress. Regardless of genre, books encourage readers to conjure up an imaginary world. When seniors experience this imaginary world for a few hours a day, it can remove negative thoughts and distract them from everyday stressors. 

Mentally engaging activities such as reading help seniors boost their mental and emotional wellbeing. Living alone at home in the golden years can present a few unique challenges. Trust homecare professionals to help your senior loved one maintain a higher quality of life while he or she lives with an illness and performs the daily tasks of living. 

2. Learn Something New

Books offer a world of knowledge, and every senior can find one that piques his or her interest. Whether they’re interested in fashion, gardening techniques, or the lives of American presidents, seniors can use books to quench their thirst for knowledge. 

Seniors who aren’t longtime readers should take trips to their local libraries. Librarians can help seniors find books that suit their tastes and show them how to find other books using the online card catalog. Seniors who own tablets may be able to check out ebooks for free using their library cards.

3. Enhance Memory

Reading is one of the best ways to exercise the memory, as it helps the brain learn new facts and follow plotlines. Reading strengthens the brain’s neural network, sharpens memory, enhances cognitive abilities, and boosts retention. Seniors who read often may soon find their memory skills extend beyond the ability to recall facts they find in books. Their memory may also function better during day-to-day activities, from remembering to take their prescriptions on time to remembering to add milk to the grocery list. 

A professional caregiver with training and expertise in methods of cognitive stimulation can also help your loved one boost his or her cognitive health. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of service home care. Arlington families can rely on Assisting Hands Home Care to provide individualized care plans to meet their elderly loved ones’ unique care needs. Our caregivers help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and we offer mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia.

4. Get Some Sleep

 Many children read bedtime stories every night before they fall asleep, and this practice shouldn’t be limited to kids. Seniors who have difficulty sleeping at night should try reading for 30 minutes before bed. It’s better for the brain than falling asleep to an electronic device or TV screen, which can inhibit healthy sleep. Seniors who want to get some high-quality sleep should pick up a book of short stories and try reading one every night before turning off their bedside lamps. For example, the Chicken Soup for the Soul series has inspirational books created specifically for seniors.

5. Lower the Risk of Cognitive Decline

Some cognitive decline is inevitable with age, but reading can stave off conditions like dementia and Alzheimer’s. This is because reading stimulates the parts of the brain responsible for memory retention. To gain the benefits of reading, seniors should consider enrolling in local book clubs. It’s a great way to socialize with like-minded individuals, and it can give them a good reason to keep reading. 

If your loved one has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia, compassionate help is available. Aging in place can present a few challenges for seniors living with dementia. However, they can still live independently at home with the help of professional dementia care. Arlington families can rely on Assisting Hands Home Care to provide their elderly loved ones with mental and social stimulation, timely medication reminders, assistance with meal prep, and much more. Our caregivers are available around the clock to help your loved one live a happier and healthier life. To learn about our premier in-home care options, give us a call at (703) 988-1800 today.