cross-posted from: https://linux.community/post/859143

Experiencing firsthand how difficult an aging alcoholic, quadriplegic, post stroke, narcissistic, demented or simply ‘nothing’s wrong with me, I can drive, I don’t need those meds, I don’t need to go to a nursing facility’ kinda parent surely gives you some insight on what to do, what not to do and how to prepare for our own aging and eventual demise.

How do you plan to age gracefully and what advice do you have for us all?

  • Apytele@sh.itjust.works
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    2 months ago

    Oh hey they taught me what to tell you in nursing school! And I’m a psych nurse so I can also give tips on not going bonkers! These are all for the average person that doesn’t have any specific reason they shouldn’t do any of these; like certain gastrointestinal disorders would contraindicate the dietary fiber.

    • Get plenty of low impact exercise like biking or swimming to keep your heart healthy but avoid fucking your joints.

    • Eat a balanced diet that’s low in processed or added sugars and high in lean protein, polyunsaturated fats (usually liquid at room temperature), and especially dietary fiber. When you talk Paleolithic diet vs the modern diet, the biggest difference is almost always roughage/fiber. Whole wheat bread might not taste as good but your colon needs the scrubbin’

    • practice good sleep hygeine. This means setting a big as possible of a difference in location, behavior, and sensory input between wakey time and sleepy time. So when you’re awake, hang out in a different area, look at different things, listen to different sounds and music, apply a different smelly lotion or keep a different essential oil near you (one of the few things essential oils are actually really good for is pavlovian conditioning yourself to get more relaxed or more alert). Also have different clothes you wear to be alert vs asleep and if you drink coffee in the morning, drink a completely differently tasting herbal tea at night. Create separate and distinct sensory environments for yourself for different contexts in general: they’ll help keep your subconscious in sync with what you’re consciously trying to accomplish.

    • either a) be religious and attend services regularly or b) choose a different social ritual to engage in and form close enough bonds with those people that they will come find and help you if you suddenly stop showing up. The mental health benefits of religion go far beyond feeling spiritually connected to the world. For a lot of people their religion is their primary social support, so if you’re not religious that’s completely valid but for optimal mental wellness you need to engage in some kind of activity that will allow a similar long term bond to form with other people. The advatage to doing this with religion is that its easier to tell people they have to come back or they’ll go to hell than to explain that not engaging in regular low-key social interaction will increase their risk of dementia in like 30+ years.

    • Don’t do meth or fentanyl, and be very very careful with alcohol. Weed is less bad for you than alcohol but tbh a light mauling from a black bear is also probably less bad for you than several years of high alcohol intake. “Safer than alcohol” is not high praise. If weed starts giving you anxiety or frequently seeing/hearing things others don’t, stop the weed immediately.

    • Papanca@lemmy.world
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      2 months ago

      To add: drink plenty of non caloric fluids and keep away from too much UV (use sun screen). And avoid the heat, since older people can’t regulate hot temperatures as well. And, for countries where you can afford it, get medical checkups or go to the doctor when something seems off. In my european country we have certain free, voluntary checkups at certain ages to check for things like colon cancer and breast cancer.

      • Papanca@lemmy.world
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        2 months ago

        And keep your teeth and gums healthy. Take care of them. Not only brushing and flossing, but don’t eat all day long and stay away from juices and sodas, since they are acidic and wear away the enamel of the teeth. Finally, try to keep your weight in check and eat your veggies (not always the same ones) and some fruits.

  • Today@lemmy.world
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    2 months ago

    We took care of both of our moms. It’s hard. Money helped a lot - MIL had a nice savings So we never had to pay for anything. My mom had long-term care insurance, so that and her savings covered her care. It’s very very stressful. You have to be able to get away occasionally and that’s either hiring someone or begging friend/family for help. I hope that I’m accepting of what my kids tell me is best for me. Looking back, I wish I had listened more to what my mom told me she wanted/didn’t want.

  • ganksy@lemmy.world
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    2 months ago

    My wife and I take care of her father. It is tough sometimes but he has a great disposition. He is always willing to try things to better his health or our living arrangement. He has just about every serious health issue known to the scientific world. From that I know what I will/am avoid(ing): don’t smoke your whole life, stay away from old asbestos piping, eat less salt/sugar.

    Even with those changes, I’m not sure our outlook is going to be much better. We don’t have kids so I guess the nursing home is more likely for us.

  • southsamurai@sh.itjust.works
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    2 months ago

    Fuck that noise, I hit 70, I’m heading into the woods with some pills and whatever else I can get my hands on and just not coming back. Let some coyote munch my bones after I go out high as a kite

      • southsamurai@sh.itjust.works
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        2 months ago

        Well, anything can happen in two decades.

        But I’ve got some supplies set aside just in case, whether the in case is then, or because something untenable happens in between.

      • southsamurai@sh.itjust.works
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        2 months ago

        Currently, yeah. No idea what it’ll be like in twenty years.

        Not that it matters, it isn’t about them, it’s about what I’m willing to put up with just to squeeze out more years

  • Flummoxed@lemmy.world
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    2 months ago

    The best idea I have heard is to write letters to future self after certain difficult times that you go through with your parents as they age in order to remind your future self of the logical arguments against the most likely arguments of your future self.

    The most persuasive argument should be the person who you have picked to give you the letter, and that fact should feature prominently in the letter.

  • Elise@beehaw.org
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    2 months ago

    Have a healthy spiritual life. That is, not be overly busy with myself. To be able to look beyond yourself and see that it’s all connected.

    A lot of people struggle with their egos and when you have to start facing the fact that it’s transient you better be able to leave that behind or it’s going to cause a lot of pain. I’ve seen it plenty of times.

  • Tangent5280@lemmy.world
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    2 months ago

    I honestly don’t think we’ll age that much at all. With the heat stress from warming climates, bodies riddled with microplastics and so on, we will likely have a short, albeit painful, existence.

  • MissJinx@lemmy.world
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    2 months ago

    Oh I don’t plan too, I’m just around while mom is around, don’t want her getting sad and stuff