Simply being around gardens, vegetation, and an assortment of green spaces at home may play a role in how long a person lives. This is the takeaway from a recent long-term study suggesting that women in the United States who live in areas surrounded by some type of greenery have lower mortality rates than their urban-dwelling counterparts. The findings are especially significant, since the results are more concrete than what was suggested by related studies.
Better Mental Health
The study considered mortality rates among more than 100,000 women over nearly a decade. In addition to considering the level of vegetation around each participant’s home, the study also accounted for typical mortality risk factors, including lifestyle choices. The 12 percent lower mortality rate observed among women living around vegetation appears to be partially related to better mental health, including lower levels of depression. Researchers also attribute the reduced mortality rates observed to:
- More opportunities for social interaction
- Reduced exposure to air pollution
- Higher physical activity levels
Planning and tending home gardens are excellent ways for seniors to boost their mental health. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of homecare services. You can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide an individualized care plan to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits, such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia.
Emphasizing the Role of Environment
Among those living in greener areas, researchers observed fewer deaths from respiratory diseases and reduced cancer mortality rates. Realistically, everyone isn’t able to live in an area surrounded by an abundance of greenery. However, the study does provide a reminder of how important it is to embrace what nature has to offer, which can be accomplished by:
- Taking time to travel to more scenic locations
- Enjoying community amenities, such as bike trails
- Making frequent trips to local parks
- Starting a small garden
Gardening is a wonderful activity for seniors with few physical limitations, but those with limited mobility may need other solutions. If your senior loved one needs help managing an illness or assistance with daily tasks, make sure you choose a top-rated provider of in-home care. Clearwater Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one live a happier and healthier life in the golden years. From the mentally stimulating activities in our Cognitive Therapeutics Method to our friendly Care Managers who are available to answer your questions 24 hours a day, we offer a wide array of high-quality at-home care services.
Inspiring Neighborhood Layouts
On a larger scale, the study results also provide an added incentive for builders, landscape architects, and city planners to incorporate gardens and other green spaces into their designs. Coincidentally, there’s already a trend in many U.S. cities to incorporate trees and other types of vegetation throughout neighborhoods.
Gardening is a safe low-impact form of exercise. If you usually help your loved one exercise but need a break now and then, consider having a professional caregiver take over for you. Clearwater respite care professionals can assist seniors with a wide array of daily tasks, offering family caregivers the chance to focus on other personal responsibilities or take a break to prevent burnout. Whether it’s for a few hours a day or a few days a week, respite care is the perfect solution for family caregivers who are feeling overwhelmed. Trust Home Care Assistance to provide high-quality compassionate professional care. If your loved one needs help with the challenges of aging, call one of our compassionate Care Managers today at (727) 330-7862.