Seeing a loved one suffer from dementia can be very challenging, but does it mean your loved one should just be resigned to sitting on the sofa and slowly deteriorating? No, it shouldn’t and especially if they are receiving domestic care at home. There is no reason why your elderly relative shouldn’t be exercising and these are some ways exercise can help dementia sufferers.
It Can Slow Progression
Exercise helps pump blood through the body and it can actually slow down the progression of dementia. It can help to reduce restlessness and give your loved one something positive to focus on. Sitting on the sofa all day every day is going to enable the disease to progress, so try your best to get them up and moving.
Understandably, in many cases, dementia can cause depression in elderly people. However, if they are getting up and moving, they will feel happier, more energetic and it can actually help to reduce levels of depression.
Elderly people suffering from dementia often experience difficulty with sleeping and this can lead to other illnesses, such as anxiety and stress. If exercise is in their daily routine, they are more likely to feel tired at night, which means they will get a better night's sleep.
Sufferers from dementia can often find themselves more susceptible to losing balance and falling, which can cause other complications. The beauty of exercising is that it can strengthen the muscles and help to improve balance and aid recovery from any fall. It doesn’t matter what age or level of dementia the elderly person has, exercise can always help.
What Types Of Exercise?
It would be ideal if your loved one could be involved in group exercises, as this can give them the opportunity to meet new people, however, this is not always possible with dementia sufferers. There are all kinds of other fun ways to exercise though.
Why not just stick the radio on and have a dance around with them in the living room?
Show them a bit of yoga and get them involved in this or even just a slow walk for 15 minutes. There are also dementia friendly holidays your loved one could go on and these often offer the opportunity to exercise.