Tips for Senior Independence in San Diego
February isn’t all about candy hearts and chocolate—it’s also National Senior Independence Month, a time for older adults and their families to focus on how to stay happy, healthy, and independent for as long as possible. To get you started, we have suggestions on how to make small improvements to your lifestyle, as well as some great resources for seniors around San Diego.
What are the key factors in senior independence?
The number one thing to remember is staying active—socially, physically, and mentally.
Studies show that for seniors, loneliness increases the risk of untimely death by 45% percent. Stay in touch with friends and family as much as possible, whether it’s in person, over the phone, or even through text or video chat. You can also get involved with the community and make new friends at a senior center or library near you.
Exercise Your Body
Getting exercise is an important part of keeping your independence, as it can help you stay active enough to continue doing things for yourself. Some low-impact exercises that are good for older adults include walking, swimming, yoga, and tai chi.
Exercise Your Mind
It’s not all about physical exercise. Keep your mind sharp too with activities like puzzles, games, and reading. Lifelong learning can prevent cognitive decline, so sign up for an interesting class and learn something new!
Evaluate Your Home
Make sure your home is a safe environment, especially if you live alone. Eliminate clutter and other trip hazards, install proper handrails and nonslip mats in bathrooms, and if you need to, hire someone to fix uneven floors or add ramps so it’s easier to get around. Consider getting a Personal Emergency Response System (PERS). With the press of a button, you’ll be connected to emergency services. It’s something you’ll be thankful for in the event of a fall or sudden health issue, especially if you aren’t able to get to the phone. PERS provide peace of mind for seniors and their families.
What kinds of resources are offered in San Diego?
San Diego is home to many organizations that offer senior resources in everything from exercise classes to book clubs to group vacations. These opportunities will help you get involved, stay social and active, and have fun.
- Countless senior centers, located throughout the city, offer all kinds of programs for older adults. Stop by one like Serving Seniors, an organization with 10 locations across San Diego that serve food and hold classes and events in areas such as health education, arts and crafts, trivia, and more.
- The City of San Diego Parks and Recreation Department organizes trips to places like Las Vegas and Palm Springs. They also have talent shows, dances, and a Senior Lounge in Balboa Park where you can join others for coffee and tea, crafts, and games.
- The San Diego Public Library system is a great resources for all ages. Join a book club or take a class at your local library. They offer a wide range of events, such as health and nutrition information sessions, exercise classes, computer classes, movie screenings, bridge, and knitting.
Scripps Affiliated Medical Groups makes it easy to find information on staying healthy and independent. Our list of senior resources throughout San Diego is organized by category, including caregiving, entertainment, mental health, nutrition, support groups, and more.