Physical activity is essential for psychological well-being in the elderly!

DOI : https://doi.org/10.32739/uha.id.44973

Experts say that when you feel good psychologically, you can use your cognitive capacity better, and when you feel good physically, you feel good psychologically.

Noting that adequate and regular physical activity is related to sleep quality, Head of the Department of Psychology Asst. Prof. Hazal Ayas expressed that "Beyond individual exercise, group exercise or dance is both a physical activity and a cognitive activity. Social physical activity is much more important, especially in the elderly population."

Üsküdar University Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences Head of Psychology Department Asst. Prof. Hazal Ayas talked about the effect of physical activities on the elderly.

"Very important for physiological well-being"

Drawing attention to sports and exercise psychology, Asst. Prof. Hazal Ayas stated that "Our body affects our mind, but at the same time, our mind affects our body. Physical activity is an important determinant of physiological well-being not only in the elderly population but also for all age groups. Especially, they have a positive effect on the cardiovascular system, metabolic system, skeletal and muscle tissue. Moreover, it also has cognitive effects. After participating in any exercise program, there is no one who does not. When you feel good physically, you feel good psychologically, as well.”

"When you feel good psychologically, cognitive capacity can also be used better"

Stating that cognitive capacity can be used better when you feel good psychologically, Asst. Prof. Hazal Ayas expressed that "In general, we know that physical exercise has positive physiological effects on our body. It has a direct biological effect. Physical exercise influences biological well-being. Being moving is equal to being alive and being able to continue living. This is also the case with the elderly. It is also thought to be a little more effective, especially in the elderly because we know that old age equals the onset of some physiological problems in a large sense. Serious disorders in the musculoskeletal system, metabolic system, cardiovascular system begin in old age. Therefore, being active has a delaying effect on the onset of these diseases."

"When we are in physical activity, the oxygen consumption of the brain increases"

Noting that physical exercise is like an effective medicine in the treatment of physiological problems, Asst. Prof. Hazal Ayas said that "What happens in the brain? When we are in physical activity, the oxygen consumption of the brain increases. Along with this, blood supply in the brain is increasing. There is an increase in the brain blood flow rate. Changes occur in dopamine and serotonin releases, and structural changes occur in the brain. These are scientifically oriented towards their cognitive effects."

"Depression is very common, especially in old age."

Drawing attention to both the protective and therapeutic properties of physical movement, Asst. Prof. Hazal Ayas stated that "Today, daily walks and physical activities are given as part of the treatment in patients with depression and anxiety disorders, and in significant psychiatric disorders. Because it has a healing effect, and this has been proven by research. Depression is very common, especially in old age. Sometimes it occurs alone, sometimes it can be accompanied by dementia or other disorders secondarily. Therefore, we can say that we encounter more depression in the elderly population than in the normal population. Thus, physical activity is important both in preventing depression and in the treatment of depression."

"When physical exercise is too heavy, stress in the brain is alarmed"

Explaining that physical activities should be adjusted at a level appropriate to the physiology of the elderly, when physical exercise is too heavy, it gives a brain stress response and there may be a psychological deterioration. Prof. Hazal Ayas continued her remarks as follows:
"It is very important to plan in a way that is unique to the age, body and individual in the company of physiotherapists. It also has a significant impact on sleep. Sleep problems are also associated with psychiatric disorders. It is also associated with neurological disorders. Psychiatric disorders can cause sleep problems, or having sleep problems can be associated with both psychiatric and neurological disorders. Therefore, we know how much of a key role sleep plays in this cycle."

"Adequate and regular physical activity is also related to sleep quality"

Stating that they know that psychiatric and especially neurological disorders are increasing in the elderly population, Ayas said that "We also see how important it is to keep good sleep quality. As age increases, there is a decrease in sleep quality, sleep continuity, and sleep duration. Therefore, even if we define the elderly individual as healthy, they can have psychiatric and neurological effects. Physical activity is very important even to prevent this. Because it seems that adequate and regular physical activity is related to sleep quality."

"Social physical activity is much more important, especially in the elderly population"

Stating that the elderly saying, "I still feel good despite getting old" has an important psychological effect, Asst. Prof. Hazal Ayas concluded her remarks as follows: "Directing the elderly to regular physical activity is very important for their physical health, cognitive health and therefore psychological health. Beyond individual exercise, group exercise or dance is both a physical activity and a cognitive activity. Physical activity in groups is much more important, especially in the elderly population."

 

Üsküdar News Agency (ÜNA)