It’s summer in Ontario! The warm weather and sunny skies are like an open invitation to spend more time outside. While it’s the perfect time to have some outdoor fun, people still fear the risks of too much sun exposure.
The threat of skin and eye damage is enough to make people at a senior’s residence stay indoors. These may be true; however, there are plenty of benefits to getting much-needed sunlight, as well as easy ways to protect from this possible damage.
Healthy Sun Exposure at Retirement Residences
There are both risks and benefits to going out under the sun. Having a balanced approach to daily sun exposure can provide a lot of health benefits for active seniors.
1. Increase Vitamin D Production
Vitamin D is popularly known as the sunshine vitamin. It provides a lot of benefits, especially for those in a senior’s residence. A healthy amount of vitamin D can help in these ways:
- Bone growth
- Strengthen immune system
- Pain relief
- Improve cardiovascular health
2. Improve Sleep Quality
Melatonin is critical for good quality sleep. Research shows that the more sun exposure you get, the more you produce melatonin at night.
A healthy amount of sunlight is also important to regulate your circadian rhythm. This helps your body know when to increase or decrease melatonin levels. This, in turn, helps improve your sleep quality.
3. Lowers Blood Pressure
According to a study by the University of Edinburgh, sunlight exposure can lessen the risk of heart disease and stroke.
The study suggests that sunlight can cause a compound called nitric oxide to release into our blood vessels. This compound is said to help lower blood pressure levels.
4. Improve Overall Mental Health
Sunlight is said to increase the brain’s release of serotonin naturally. Serotonin is known to boost your mood and help you stay focused and calm.
Active seniors living in retirement residences also tend to go out more during warm summer months. This increase in activity also boosts your endorphins.
Both these “feel-good” chemicals lessen the symptoms of stress, depression, and anxiety. Even just a few minutes under the sun can leave you feeling calmer and happier.
Staying Safe in the Sun
The sun has so many benefits, but they are enjoyed best when you take the following precautions:
- Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes from any possible damage from sunlight.
- Wear SPF 50 or high sunscreen to avoid getting burned.
- Wear cool, breathable clothing to avoid overheating.
- Hydrate before, during, and after sun exposure to avoid dehydration.
Living with Vitality at Retirement Communities “Near Me”
It is important to choose a retirement community that lets you thrive in every way. Here at Livita Retirement Residences, we are committed to our resident’s health vitality.
During the summer months, we always have programs that promote the health and well-being of our active seniors. This includes walking, gardening, sunshine social hours, and other socially distanced outdoor events.