Studies have shown that after you exceed the age of 50, you will begin to notice that your hands are not as strong as they once used to be when you were younger, especially since our hands are used multiple times throughout our days.
Well-functioning hands and fingers are usually associated with strong executive function, which are the mental skills that include flexible thinking, self-control, and working memory. In order to avoid long term musculoskeletal hand problems, you will first need to understand that hand dexterity is important for seniors, while also identifying which conditions directly weaken and cause pain to your hands during your stay at a VRS seniors housing community.
The five common conditions that affect our hand health are carpal tunnel syndrome, cubital tunnel syndrome, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, and rheumatoid arthritis. With carpal tunnel syndrome, you will slowly lose thumb strength and dexterity when your fingers feel stiff, swollen or tight due to the compressed nerves that run from the neck to the thumb, to the ring finger. Cubital tunnel syndrome causes more prominent hand weakness compared to carpal tunnel syndrome as the nerve responsible for the hand’s nerve and muscle function becomes compressed and inflamed at the elbow. With osteoarthritis, your hands and finger joints may feel stiff particularly at the beginning of the day due to the wearing of the protective joint cartilage, while with osteoporosis can cause your bones to become brittle and weak, which can increase the risk of hand or wrist fractures when you accidentally fall. On the other hand, rheumatoid arthritis affects the lining of the joints and tendons which causes pain, stiffness, and swelling in the fingers.
However, these are some ways you can help improve your manual dexterity at a VRS seniors housing community:
Learn a musical instrument
Learning to play a musical instrument such as a clarinet, flute, guitar, piano or violin can help flex your fingers and work out your hand muscles. Remember, you don’t have to be an expert at a particular instrument when you are learning to play just to ensure your fingers are getting a little workout, sometimes it’s just fun to try your best and learn a couple things along the way at a seniors housing community at VRS.
Try knitting and sewing at seniors housing at VRS seniors housing locations
When it comes to taking up a new hobby such as knitting or sewing, there is no better place to try it out for the first time than at a VRS location. Someone is bound to have some level of expertise in this department and you will have a higher chance of finding the correct materials and tools to get started. Trying to make something can also motivate you to continue practicing your craft and in turn ensuring your fingers maintain or even increase dexterity.
You might already have prior knowledge about handwriting, but doing calligraphy could be a new topic if you have never heard of it before. Not only is it an artistic form of writing and drawing symbols, but it’s fun to see how many unique ways you can write one thing.
Try it out with a pencil first before you try it with a pen, and remember to try it with both hands one at a time to keep them both active. This fun exercise also has the potential to exercise your brain as it pushes your dexterity skills to the next level, especially when attempting it with your non-dominant hand at a VRS seniors housing community.
If you’re looking for a VRS seniors retirement community that offers a variety of recreational activities, we are here for you. Feel free to contact us to inquire if we offer assisted living services at this VRS location. Call 604-731-1020 to arrange a tour at one of VRS’ warm and friendly independent seniors communities.