Seniors Week 2019: Independence and Mental Health

Seniors Week is coming soon; a time where Australians celebrate senior citizens and their contributions to society. Normally our articles are about increasing the value of your home or how to attract renters, but not this time. This article is about celebrating seniors, understanding the current living situations and how your home can be adapted to live independently for longer.

What is Seniors Week

Seniors Week in WA will run from 10th-17th November 2019. It is a week which celebrates seniors and all their contributions to society. The week itself is a good time to attend community events and spend time with those special in your life.

Why would you want to live independently?

Being prevalent in recent media, a lack of government funding and an inability to overhaul the entire aged care institution has created public uproar sparking a royal commission set to run until April 2020. Unfortunately, the current aged care system is a necessity. Despite its shortcomings there are still people who need the services they’re meant to provide:

  • People with dementia
  • The disabled
  • Those without family
  • Those living under the poverty line

With superannuation only becoming mandatory in 1991, many elderly are finding they are forced to sell their homes to live. For many older Australians the idea of independent living simply isn’t an option, but considering the aged care alternative, we have provided a few basic tips to help those hoping to live independently.

Railing:

If you’re in a position where your legs are getting weaker or arthritis is becoming an issue, you will need help. A standard approach is to have handrails installed throughout the house, as well as outside. Having railing in places such as by your front steps or your bathroom could prevent falls and injuries.

Ramps:

As well as ramps, it is a smart idea to remove obstacles in general. If you have front steps to your house then consider replacing them with ramps. If you have any arthritic issues in your hips or knees you may find this easier to deal with.

Electric Recliners:

You can purchase comfortable electric recliners which can lean forward and lift from the back. These chairs aren’t cheap, but they could improve an older person’s quality of life. These options aren’t just available in chairs but also in beds.

Mobile alarm:

There is a pendant that people can wear around their neck; when pressed is can contact emergency services and sends out your GPS location. In the event of a fall general illness where you can’t help yourself, these will do the work for you. To find out more about the LifeLive Alarm click here.

Aids:

The reality is that when it comes to changing your home, it won’t take much to make a huge difference. A lot of things you have can be upgraded easily with the use of aids. You can purchase grip aids for your taps if you have trouble with your hands, new cutlery if you have issues with shaking and reaching aids for the things that are just out of reach. If you’re able to get help in to your home for nursing, a carer or a cleaner these will do wonders towards the level of independence needed. A lot of people also prefer to downsize at retirement, and bringing any physical ailments to the attention of a realtor will help the find you the perfect home to live in comfortably.

Quality of Life and Mental Health

There is still a stigma around mental health issues, especially for those from an older generation. Mental health issues simply weren’t public knowledge. These days we acknowledge mental health as a health issue. For older people the chances of depression and anxiety are very high. The statistics show that 10-15% of older people have depression and around 10% have anxiety. Around 35% of those in aged care have depression.

Recently there was a television series on ABC called, Old People’s Home for 4 Year Olds. The idea was to test the physical and mental health of a group of seniors and then have them spend time with 4 year old kids to see if they improve. The results were positive and the contact with the children brought out a former youthfulness. Spending time with those special in your life is key to living a healthy and active life.

How we help

At Salt Property Group we are very cautious of the homes we show our clients. We supply our clients with the best we have to offer, both in property and service. We have a great respect for the elderly and when the time comes and they want to downsize, we find the best possible home for them; not just for now, but for years into the future. To view some of our downsizing options, click here.

If you know any senior citizens who contribute greatly to the community please nominate them for Senior Community Citizen of the Year Award here.
Nominations close October 31.

To find out more about Seniors Rights and Entitlements through COTA click here.
COTA is also a good way to keep in touch with the senior community though events and forums.