Now that March has arrived and the spring weather is on the horizon, you are probably looking forward to being able to spend time outdoors once again. Here at the assisted living facilities in Macomb, we understand that the Michigan winters can be harsh. While we do our very best to make sure we offer our residents a multitude of ways to stay active and out of the elements, we understand that you’re eager to get out and about once again.
Today, we’re going to explore some of the main benefits that seniors can experience from spending time outside. Continue reading to learn more about why you should get some fresh air and sunshine this spring!
#1.) Bolster Mental Health
During the winter time, do you suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)? If so, you’re not alone. Millions of Americans, including seniors, experience feelings of depression, anxiety, and sadness during the colder months where the days are shorter. Typically, these clear up once spring rolls around and the sun is out even longer.
You don’t have to have SAD to reap the mental health benefits of being outdoors, however! Throw on a light jacket and hit up the walking tails around the assisted living facilities in Macomb and see for yourself just how much a little stroll in the sunshine can improve your mood and outlook.
#2.) Vitamin D from Sunshine
While you are bound to find Vitamin D in a variety of foods that you eat, the sun is an excellent natural resource of this essential vitamin. In fact, even spending a few minutes a day in the sunshine can provide you with all of the daily allotted Vitamin D that you need! This vitamin is essential for fighting off osteoporosis, preventing the development of various types of cancer, and can even combat depression symptoms.
Just remember that as it gets warmer and you shed layers to spend time outside, don’t skip out on the sunscreen! You can still absorb Vitamin D from the sun while wearing protective sunscreen, so make sure that you apply it as needed.
#3.) Amp Up Your Immune System
As you age, you naturally become more susceptible to contracting various types of illnesses. During the long winter, you probably had to ensure at least one sickness in the face of cold and flu season. Spring can still bring along a variety of illnesses, so it’s best to keep your immune system up and protect yourself. According to research, spending time outdoors can naturally boost your white blood cell count. This is essential to having a strong and healthy immune system capable of warding off any illnesses.
#4.) Combat Mental Fatigue
Many seniors struggle with mental fatigue, especially those who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. Mental fatigue occurs when your brain seems to slow down and can’t keep pace with the world around you. One of the best ways to combat this is to spend time in environments that are particularly soothing or calming, such as the outdoors. Coupled with the fresh air and ample sunshine, simply spending time outdoors can inspire feelings of awe and help you to feel more relaxed and at ease. It can also help you to clear your mind when facing feelings or situations that might overwhelm you or make you uncomfortable.
For seniors that are feeling down, stressed, or otherwise overwhelmed and anxious, try heading outdoors for a while. Take your beloved family dog for a walk, spend some time at the park with your grandchildren, or simply sit at a local bench with a book. You’ll be amazed at how much more relaxed and happier you feel after just a short while.
#5.) Great Socialization Opportunities
Even for residents of senior assisted living facilities in Macomb, it’s natural to want more opportunities to connect with others. As a member of a senior living community, you have a solid network of friends and other residents you can link up with to participate in various indoor activities. However, warm weather doubles the type of activities you can do and ways you can join up with other seniors.
For example, spring and summer is a great time to hit up the golf course, play tennis or pickleball with friends, or simply plan an outdoor picnic with friends and relatives. There is no right or wrong way to go about participating in outdoor activities, just remember to have fun and stay social! Plus, here at Oakleigh, we are a pet friendly community meaning that you can bring your furry best friend with you! Dogs especially provide their owners with a multitude of reasons to get outdoors every day.
#6.) Faster Recovery Times
According to various studies, spending time outdoors can actually expedite one’s recovery process. For example, if you are recouping from a surgery, even sitting outdoors for a little while can decrease the pain you are experiencing and speed up your recovery process. Of course, always make sure that it is safe and you are cleared by a doctor before heading outside. Also, never head outdoors alone without a caregiver or family member in case of accidents or in the face of an emergency.
Check Out Oakleigh of Macomb
When it comes time to research various assisted living facilities in Macomb, make sure that you find a community that truly understands the value of spending time outdoors. Here at Oakleigh, we provide a wealth of opportunities for our seniors to head outside, spend time with others, and enjoy all that nature has to offer. With winter on its way out, it’s all the more important to encourage our senior residents to soak up the sunshine, boost their spirits, improve their immune system, and overall, feel their very best.
To learn more about our community and all that we offer our residents, be sure to contact us today! Book a tour of our gorgeous facility, talk to other residents as well as staff, and see for yourself just why Oakleigh of Macomb should be your new home.