Golf Days Out: Beneficial for People with Dementia and Their Families

Golf Days Out is the vision of Anthony Blackburn, a care worker with an enthusiasm for golf. For people with dementia and their families, Golf Days Out is an opportunity to have a day of positive social interaction and outdoor activity. It combines so many of the factors that dementia patients are usually missing in their day-to-day lives. Along with their independence, people living with Alzheimer’s Disease can have a tougher time forming new friendships and for their family members, around the clock care can become exhausting.

Golf Days Out then, becomes the weekly venture where golfers with dementia are able to have a day of leisure along with interested local golfers, whom after given a dementia friends training, are able to become “golfing buddies.” The day consists of a full nine holes with team competitions for trophies in which they all can participate. For Golf Days Out, no previous golfing experience is necessary and all players are able to help each other out. Meanwhile, careers form a support group and are given respite from their daily duties.

Danny Walsh, senior lecturer in nursing and Carol Duff, senior lecturer and consultant occupational therapist, both at the University of Lincoln are piloting the scheme at the Lincoln Golf Centre. There, management and members have thoroughly embraced the concept and are adamant supporters.

For  more information on Golf Days Out, contact Anthony Blackburn at golfinsociety@gmail.com

Information for this post was derived from “‘Golf Days Out’ An Innovation in Care and Respite” published in the September/October 2016 Issue of The Journal of Dementia Care (Vol 24 No 5).

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7 Tips on Staying Mentally Healthy

As we age, we more or less expect the decline of our physical health as our bodies grow weary through age. However, just like we can take steps to maintain good physical health through nutrition and exercise, it is also important that we address our mental health and ways in which we can stay alert, and stay mentally healthy well into old age.

Mental health is important at every age, and being mentally health just means that we maintain an overall sense of emotional wellbeing. Maintaining our mental health can help us forestall alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia and help us deal with day-to-day challenges with a positive outlook.

Here are some ways that can help you do just that:

1.Keep an open mind

Oftentimes after retirement we find ourselves with the challenge of not knowing what to do that doesn’t involve going to work.Therefore¬†it is essential that we keep an open mind to this change and rediscover the things that we always wanted to do. Retirement should be fulfilling, and you alone have the power to make it that.

2. Maintain Connections with those you Care about

We all feel lonely at one time or another, but loneliness shouldn’t be a characteristic of old age. Take this time to write down all the people which you have been meaning to contact and do it. Make family time a priority, and nurture friendships.

3. Read

Reading magazine, books and newspapers is a great way to pass the time and stay connected with current affairs. If you love reading, joining a book club can be a great way to make connections and make new friends.

4. Take up a hobby

Think of what it is that’s always interested and intrigued you, but you’ve never had time to take it up, and do it. Whether it’s learning how to play an instrument, taking up painting, knitting, or working on cars, whatever you’ve always been curious about, now is the best time to set forth and learn.

5. Make a contribution to your community

Research a cause that’s important to you and find ways in which you can help. Whether you’re contributing your time to a charity, working on a community garden, or simply helping a friend – doing something nice for others is the joy that keeps on giving.

6. Maintain stress levels low

Learn what triggers stress, anxiety and depression and learn about healthy ways to deal with these episodes; whether it’s calling a friend or family member, going for a walk, or doing something to distract your mind. After all, good mental health is our overall goal.

7. Keep a regular routine that includes plenty of sleep

Maintaining a routine to your day is key to staving off feelings of loneliness and anxiety. Make sure you allot plenty of time for sleep to give your body the chance to refresh and renew itself. People who are sleep-deprived or exhausted tend to be less able to deal with life’s challenges, therefore getting a good night’s sleep should be a priority.

These are just some of the things that you can take up now to help you stay mentally healthy at any age. Just like our physical health, staying mentally alert and happy is key in maintaining a good quality of life and overall health.

preventing malnutrition and obesity

Preventing Malnutrition and Obesity in Older Adults

In the UK, life expectancy has doubled in the past 200 years and today, around 16% of the population is aged over 65 years.

Here at Canwick House, we recognise that older adults have special nutritional needs that must be met. Unfortunately, both malnutrition and obesity are prevalent in the older population. We find it troubling that these problems are more common in those who are living in care homes or other care institutions. This is why we are committed to preventing both malnutrition and obesity in older adults.

Dietary recommendations for fat, carbohydrate and dietary fibre remain the same for the elderly as they do for the rest of the population. However, as older bodies change, it becomes harder for them to absorb vital nutrients. Moreover, difficulty in chewing and digesting and the decreased ability to taste certain foods can make it more difficult for older adults to maintain a healthy diet. We aim to prevent malnutrition at Canwick House by offering our clients dishes that satisfy, delight and nourish mind, body and soul.

Many of the diseases that affect the elderly can be the result of dietary factors. Through the ageing process, these factors are then compounded by changes that naturally occur in ageing bodies. Dietary fat has shown to be seemingly associated with cancer of the colon, pancreas and prostate. Atherogenic risk factors such as increased blood pressure, blood lips, and glucose intolerance also play a significant role in heart disease. These are all things that can be prevented through a healthy and balanced diet. At Canwick House, we are committed to foods that are fresh, wholesome and promote the health, wellbeing and vitality of our clients.