What happens after retirement, kids leave the nest or when the extent of your social life becomes medical appointments? The truth of the matter is…grief. Retirement and successfully sending your children into the world are what some work towards and do not realize the associated grief. Although varied by State, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, the average retirement age is 63 for Americans.
Post-retirement grief is not widely recognized, nor discussed. Symptoms of this may look like sadness or a feeling of emptiness. Perhaps you feel hopeless or pessimistic. Problems with sleep, appetite, difficulty concentrating, and irritability may persist. First and foremost, it is important to talk to someone about these feelings, you may find that you are not alone.
Aging in Place
What next? What does it mean to “Age in Place?” A term used for someone who wants to continue to live well at home or in a retirement home with a home-like setting. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the average life expectancy of a woman is 81.2 years and 84.3 years for a male. Meaning, there are 20 years of living. Instead of feeling isolated as you age in place, how can one live well?
Studies show that human connection is essential in minimizing depression and increasing contentment. Happiness and contentment will then contribute to improved coping, decreased illness or faster recovery.
Research has identified that social activity leads to preventing a decrease in cognitive function, minimizing brain fog and forgetfulness associated with aging, “use it or lose it” as the saying goes. Joining a club, learning something new, taking a class you have always wanted, simply going to a movie or entering a caring retirement home with planned activates are all effective strategies.
Keeping a schedule and interacting with others enhances emotional well-being, reducing symptoms of loneliness, depression, anxiety or despair. Consider a plan to keep socially connected. A volunteer opportunity helps you be accountable to someone else. Scheduling time with family, maybe babysitting the grandchildren. Maintain those relationships with family you are closest to. Social connection also encourages a better-quality sleep and leads to a longer, more enjoyable life.
Perhaps you would like to improve your physical health. Studies have proven that restorative Yoga for seniors reduces high blood pressure, boosts your immune system, improves your respiration, balance and helps with cognitive function. Finding the right home for retirement that can keep you socially and physically active may take some time.
At Homes of Joy Senior Living, we share the philosophy that living well is essential. Here, we welcome you age in place with us where will keep you engaged and socially active.