Gardening Has Many Health and Therapeutic Benefits for Seniors
Gardening has many health and therapeutic benefits for seniors, especially when you create an edible garden. Garden beds, equipment and tools can all be modified to create a garden that is interesting, accessible and productive.
Some medical conditions and physical disabilities may restrict or prevent seniors from participating in gardening. However with planning and a few changes, you can create a safe, accessible, and pleasant space.
Gardening keeps you fit and healthy
Everyone can benefit from creating an edible garden. Seniors can get particular benefits because
• Is an enjoyable form of exercise.
• Increases levels of physical activity and maintains mobility and flexibility.
• Encourages use of all motor skills – walking, reaching and bending – through activities such as planting seeds and taking cuttings.
• Improves endurance and strength.
• Helps prevent diseases like osteoporosis.
• Reduces stress levels and promotes relaxation.
• Provides stimulation and interest in nature and the outdoors.
• Improves wellbeing as a result of social interaction.
• Provides nutritious, home-grown produce.
Safety in the garden
Here are a few safety tips that seniors and their caregivers should follow.
• Attend to any cuts, bruises or insect bites immediately.
• Take care in the use of power tools.
• Secure gates and fences if memory loss is an issue.
• Ensure that paths and walkways are flat and non-slip.
• Warm up before gardening and encourage frequent breaks.
• Prevent sun exposure by working in the garden early in the morning or late in the day.
• Wear a hat and apply sunscreen frequently.
• Drink water or juice, and avoid alcohol.
• Wear protective shoes, lightweight comfortable clothes that cover exposed skin, a hat and gloves.
Sighted from The better health channel.