10 tips for elderly dialysis patients to keep themselves active

If you thought that dialysis patients should be confined to their beds, we urge you to think again. While young dialysis patients can travel, work, cook food, shop groceries, exercise, etc the elderly ones may not be able to do these but there are several other activities that can help them stay active

Below are a list of activities they can do to keep themselves engaged:

1. Morning walk:

A short walk at home with or without assistance can help elderly dialysis patients kick start their day with confidence. Walking has immense health benefits including improving blood sugar, alleviating blood pressure, stimulating appetite, better nutrients digestion and absorption, etc. Elderly dialysis patients may be frail as well as fragile, some amount of activities can help them stay motivated

2. Practicing yoga and arterio-venous fistula exercises:

Dialysis includes water restriction and hence impacts normal bowel movements. This can lead to constipation which may worsen with aging. Hence, a few easy and simple yoga asanas like balasan or malasan or pawanmuktasan can help relieve constipation. However, these can be done by patients who do not have knee joint or hip joint complains

Dialysis patients should also perform fistula strengthening exercises if they have an active arterio venous fistula as this helps in increasing the life of the fistula. This ultimately helps in ensuring better quality of dialysis which helps to flush out toxins efficiently from the body. A weak fistula can lead to pile up of toxins. With appropriate arm exercises, it can be strengthened. These exercises can be performed as guided by your surgeon or dialysis technician

3. Deep breathing exercises:

Deep breathing exercises can prove to be extremely beneficial in lowering blood pressure, improving lung capacity as well as improving overall cardiac health.

4. Cultivating a kitchen garden:

In case practicing yoga is not possible, few simple activities like watering/ pruning (cutting)/ loosening soil for plants can prove to be beneficial. If you cultivate a kitchen garden, elderly population may have best suggestions for selection of crops according to weather

5. Cleaning vegetables & fruits:

At times, the younger generation may not find time to take care of kitchen items which leaves a room for elderly population to help with cleaning of vegetables and fruits. This offers a great support to the younger and may prove to be a better use of time for the elderly

6. Decluttering the refrigerator:

A refrigerator is one place which is ought to get cluttered if there are multiple people staying together. Hence, decluttering may become essential at least twice a week.

7. Planning groceries:

Elderly population owing to their enormous stretch of life and experience may have acquired the ability and skills of good planning. This can be used to the advantage by younger population and seek guidance from elderly members while planning, ordering or procuring groceries

8. Meal planning:

Meal planning may become extremely important task especially if there are more family members staying together. While dialysis patients may need separate cooking of food, they can help in planning different recipes

9. Arranging food for pets:

If they cannot walk the dog but still they can stay connected by feeding it. Ordering, arranging and feeding pets may seem satisfying, caring as well as comforting. This is also a good engaging activity for elderly dialysis patients

10. Listening podcasts/ watching infotainment channels:

Podcasts from different genres like spiritual/ retro/ religional can seem calming and peaceful. Listening to podcasts is a simple, non-strenuous but engaging activity. If not listening to podcasts, patients can also prefer watching infotainment channels on digital media platforms like youtube, facebook, etc

Elderly dialysis patients can also avail dialysis related information on our youtube channel, click here to access videos

If you have an elderly dialysis patient at home, you may want to check out this article on ‘Dos and donts to keep in mind for hemodialysis patients’, click here to read the article

At NutriKonnect, we have one-to-one diet consultation sessions with a comprehensive follow up. You can avail our advance or premium session if you need innvovative recipes for kidney disease. For tasty and healthy kidney – friendly lunch and dinner menus and desserts, you can avail our recipe course, click here to gain access.

If you have any queries related to kidney diet, feel free to post them here . We shall revert back on them soon

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