Pain is an inherent aspect of aging as the elderly are more likely to encounter chronic health issues such as arthritis and osteoporosis. Moreover, injuries like fractures are common in seniors, and recovery can be slow. If you have an aging parent, expect to see them struggling with pain over the years. The worst part of the situation is that medicines cause more harm than good as they have severe side effects with prolonged use. Fortunately, your loved one can deal with the condition effectively without relying on medication. Let us share some valuable tips to help your aging parent lead a pain-free life.
Facilitate an active lifestyle
Being active when living with chronic pain sounds counterproductive, but it can actually help seniors overcome their woes. An inactive lifestyle can weaken muscles and cause weight gain and may lead to new sources of discomfort over time. Seek expert opinion on the best exercises for your aging parent according to their condition and capabilities. Walking at a comfortable pace is ideal for the elderly. Water-based forms of exercise also work as they are less stressful. A personal trainer can suggest low-impact workout routines for them. But remember to ensure proper clothing, equipment, and techniques to prevent workout-related injuries.
Explore alternative therapies
Painkillers may offer quick relief for your parent, but they are not the best option for the long haul. Look for alternative therapies that provide effective and sustainable pain relief. Techniques like massage, physiotherapy, hot and cold compresses, acupuncture, and chiropractic care can help. Medical cannabis is a tried and tested remedy for chronic pain, and it is safe for the elderly. Your parent can rely on the therapy as it is safe and natural. Moreover, cannabis addresses inflammation and treats the condition from the root.
Stress is often a cause of chronic pain in aging adults as it aggravates inflammation, slows down healing, and causes sleep deprivation. Seniors often struggle with stress relating to isolation, chronic conditions, and mobility issues. Things get worse on losing a spouse or living alone. You can extend love and support to help your parent steer clear of mental trauma. Help them embrace practices like meditation, yoga, Pilates, and tai chi. Keeping a journal, following a hobby, and exploring relaxing activities such as gardening and interactions with pets also help. Most importantly, spend time with them and be there through the challenging moments.
Aging and pain go hand in hand, but it shouldn’t make seniors dependent on painkillers for the rest of their lives. You can do your bit for your parents by suggesting ways to limit the dependence on medication and explore natural therapies. Encourage them to focus on a holistic approach as it promises a better quality of life and good health in the long run.