There are new advancements being made in medical fields everyday, which can mean great things for seniors who are in need of medical treatment. Even as these scientific progresses continue to make a significant impact, it’s just as important to meet the needs of a patient that go beyond medical care at the same time. A person’s physical, emotional, and mental states are just as important as their physical condition.
So how do we meet those needs? Holistic care is an approach to healing that works to include all areas of a person’s wellbeing in their treatment plan. Most people are confused about what holistic care means, and how it can apply to them. And, in the case of seniors who need care, how it can improve their lives. Let’s take a look at what holistic care is, and how it can apply to your loved one’s care plan.
What is Holistic Care?
Holistic care is centered around a philosophy of healing the whole person. This means looking at a patient as a person first, not as a diagnosis or set of care needs. Holistic care takes into consideration other aspects of a person beyond the physical, including their feelings, emotions, and overall state of mind throughout their care journey.
In addition, holistic care tries to fix the cause of a condition instead of just managing the physical symptoms of sickness. Holistic treatments include not only the traditional remedies that you would receive from a regular doctor, but also different ways to help treat conditions that go beyond traditional medicine.
Take, for example, migraines. If someone complained of migraines, a holistic medical practitioner would give the patient medication to manage pain just like most doctors. However, they would also look at what could be behind the headaches, such as a bad diet, poor sleep, or high stress levels. They would then suggest additional treatments for those factors like a new diet plan, different habits for better sleep, or a massage or meditation course to help decrease stress.
Holistic care practitioners try to make patients feel dignified, respected, and heard by considering the physical, emotional, intellectual, social, and spiritual needs of a patient. Common examples of holistic care include:
- Massage therapy
- Specialized diets
- Pet therapy
- Music therapy
- Education on the value of self-care
- Chiropractic care
- Color therapy
Holistic Care & Seniors
As people age and become seniors, they generally find themselves struggling with more and more health problems. This can be incredibly difficult to handle, especially if pain is a daily symptom. Many seniors look to avoid having an overwhelming amount of prescriptions and medications, many of which come with serious side effects.
While the benefits of medical science have undeniably come a long way, it’s also important that seniors feel valued as people. Holistic care can be a great supplemental option for seniors who want to maintain their dignity, feel valued and respected, and have different options for treatments and pain management alongside traditional remedies.
Holistic care can have additional benefits that make a big impact on seniors, including:
- Opportunities for socialization
- Healthy relationships with long-term caregivers
- Cognitive development and maintenance
- An increased sense of self-worth and self-respect
- Staying independent for longer
- Spiritual and religious comfort
Seniors don’t want to feel like a burden on their caregivers, but a brisque attitude can make them feel as though they aren’t being valued as people first and foremost. Seniors with serious illnesses can quickly become depressed if they aren’t treated with compassion and respect. Therefore, it makes sense that holistic care can go a long way in helping seniors mentally, emotionally, and physically.
Holistic Care at Vista Springs
At Vista Springs, we want to do everything we can to make a difference in the lives of our community members, and holistic care plays a big role. All of our communities have amazing staff and cognitively engaging programs that help seniors with their mental and social functions, along with specialized diets and fitness rooms that encompass many holistic needs of our residents.
Many of our assisted living communities have additional holistic programs for senior residents, like our essential oils program that helps many of our community members enrolled in memory care services relax and stay calm without medication. There are additional holistic services offered at different locations, like the pet therapy program at our Howell community, the music therapy offered at Washington Place, or massage therapy at Quail Highlands, along with many more.
With so many advancements in modern medicine, getting help can feel clinical and leave patients feeling as though they aren’t being valued as people. Holistic care works to change that perception and find alternative treatments that can help fix more than just a physical ailment. And, especially in the case of seniors, holistic care helps patients maintain their dignity and understand that they are valued.