How Lifestyle Activities Enrich the Lives of Aged Care Residents

Aged Care Residents

Aged care residents can sometimes experience a sense of boredom and feel lonely, especially if they don’t have many family members or friends to visit them regularly.

It’s no secret that a lack of social interaction and stimulation can lead to many negative outcomes for aged care residents, such as depression and anxiety.

Lifestyle activities in aged care facilities are the perfect way to enrich the lives of the residents. These activities provide emotional support, social interaction, mental stimulation, and physical activity essential for healthy aging.

According to a 2020 Royal Commission study into the Australian aged population;

  • Most older Australians (70+) who completed the survey spent time maintaining their health and exercising, or pursuing recreation and leisure activities.
  • Over half of older Australians who completed the survey enjoy spending time involved with community activities or volunteering.
  • 82% of older Australians who completed the survey valued home gardening and maintenance as part of their professional aged care.
  • 68% of older Australians who completed the survey valued day centres for social activities and exercise as part of their professional aged care.

Satisfying The Lifestyle Needs of Aged Care Residents

Physical

Lifestyle activities can help residents keep their strength and mobility as they age. Group exercises or walks around the facility can be a great way to get some exercise and socialise with other residents at the same time.

Dance and exercise activities can also help residents improve their balance and coordination. With suitable routines, residents can stay active and healthy for years to come.

Mental

Activities that stimulate the mind are important for aged care residents. Puzzles, word games, and other mentally stimulating activities can help keep their brains active and healthy.

Residents who enjoy arts and crafts will be happy to know that there are plenty of opportunities for creative expression in aged care. Painting, drawing, and quilting are popular activities that help residents express themselves and stay mentally stimulated.

Social

One of the main benefits of aged care activities is providing social interaction and community participation for the residents. This is crucial for maintaining a healthy mental state, as social isolation can lead to loneliness and depression.

Activities that involve group participation, such as sing-alongs or group discussions, are ideal for promoting social interaction. There are plenty of opportunities for one-on-one socialising, such as chatting with a friend or playing a game of cards.

Emotional

Aged care lifestyle activities can provide emotional support for elderly residents.

Activities such as singing and storytelling are inherently emotional experiences. These group or individual activities can help residents feel connected to others and give them a sense of purpose.

Residential aged care facilities and nursing homes should make sure that they have a variety of lifestyle activities available for their residents. This will ensure that all of the resident’s needs are met and enjoy a fulfilling and enriching life in aged care.

Lifestyle Activities For The Aged Care Population

Now that we know how important lifestyle activities are for the elderly, what activities should we be planning for them?

St. Jude’s Health Care Services offers a wide variety of activities that can be enjoyed by the elderly. Here are some of them:

Outings and Excursions

These activities involve residents going to bus outings, including picnics, visits to museums and wildlife parks, and outdoor barbecues. Trips can be organised for residents to visit historical sites, go to the theatre, take a walk in the park, or simply explore the local community.

Dance and Exercise Programs

These group activities are designed to keep residents active and healthy. They can involve simple exercises or more complex dance routines.

Regular exercise is a must for the elderly residents. It’s one of the simplest social activities that they can do in a safe and monitored environment.

Reading and Storytelling

St. Jude’s have a mobile library that offers a comprehensive supply of books for our residents. Reading is an activity that people of all ages can enjoy, and it’s a great way to stimulate the mind and maintain their cognitive ability.

Residents can also participate in board games. Some nursing homes allow them to do this with family and friends during visiting hours.

Arts and Crafts

Crafting is a popular hobby for many older people. It allows them to be creative and express themselves in a way that is unique to them.

Our aged care facilities and care providers have a variety of arts and crafts activities on offer, such as painting, drawing, and quilting.

Singing and Musical Activities

Singing is a great way to express emotions and enjoy people of all ages. Our facilities have regular sing-along sessions, which are a lot of fun for residents.

We also have house concerts as part of music therapy, where residents can listen to live music performances.

Pet Therapy

Having a pet, or having a pet come and visit can be beneficial for older people, as it provides them with companionship and emotional support.

Spiritual Retreats

Our aged care homes often organise spiritual retreats for elderly residents. These can involve attending church services, clergy visits, praying, or simply spending time in quiet contemplation.

Beauty Services

Our beauty services include manicures, pedicures, facials, massage and waxing. These services are enjoyable, but they also help promote a sense of well-being.

Keeping Our Aged Care Residents Happy and Healthy

There are many other types of leisure activities that can be enjoyed by the elderly. The important thing is to find activities that interest them and provide them with a sense of purpose.

At both our Guildford Village and Bethania Gardens locations there are a variety of lifestyle activities available for our aged care residents to choose from that ensure that their individual needs and preferences have been met. Ultimately, the goal is to keep our residents happy and healthy.

Additionally, our home care services available in Western Australia allow for the inclusion of lifestyle activities, whether it be from their homes or out in the community.

We hope that this article has helped shed some light on the importance of lifestyle activities and has encouraged you to get involved in your local aged care community. To learn more about the fantastic aged care activity program at St Jude’s, reach out to us for some information.