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Why Should Older Adults Do an Ancestry Search?

By Rick Cohen, 9:00 am on

Over the years, many seniors eventually get the urge to learn more about their ancestors. Those who trace their roots often discover exciting stories and unusual plots that could have easily been lost forever. This popular hobby can provide seniors with many amazing benefits that enhance their quality of life, ranging from cognitive stimulation to better relationships with family members.

If your elderly loved one needs help maintaining a high quality of life while aging in place, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a trusted provider of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, home care. Services our caregivers provide include transportation to and from medical appointments and social events, nutritious meal preparation, assistance with daily exercise, and help with everyday tasks like bathing, grooming, and light housekeeping.

Here are a few key reasons seniors should research their ancestry.

Enhance Computer Skills

Quite a bit of research can be done at local libraries, but those who want to uncover every aspect of their family’s history will eventually need to use technology. There are now dozens of companies that help customers learn more about their past with simple online tools. Spending time carrying out this research can boost a senior’s confidence and unlock a whole new world of technology. As your loved one becomes more comfortable using a computer, he or she might begin to enjoy sending emails, checking up on the news, or streaming favorite old movies. 

Unite Families

Many children learn how to make a family tree while they are going to school, and one of the reasons these projects are so popular is because they can bring families together. One recent study carried out at Emory University found that genealogy research helps people form a sense of identity and self-awareness. It can connect family members across multiple generations who might otherwise have a difficult time finding similar interests. This research gives seniors and their loved ones exciting talking points every time a new piece of information is discovered or an interesting ancestor is found. 

Obtain Old Medical Records

Even though lifestyle habits have a major impact on health, genetics play a big role as well. Some of the most common age-related ailments are passed from one generation to the next, and seniors can benefit from learning as much as possible about their ancestors’ medical records. As your loved one pieces the family tree together, he or she can make a list of some of the most common causes of death. If any of those diseases or disorders are genetic, your loved one can schedule further tests to see if he or she needs to begin any treatments. Some of the medical issues seniors should keep an eye out for include cystic fibrosis, dementia, Huntington’s disease, osteoporosis, and arthritis. 

Living with a serious health condition can make it challenging for seniors to age in place. However, they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional live-in care. Milwaukee, WI, seniors can benefit from assistance with meal prep, bathing, transportation to the doctor’s office, medication reminders, and much more.

Boost Brain Power

Older adults should constantly be looking for ways to test their cognitive abilities. Those who don’t challenge their problem-solving skills and spatial awareness have much higher rates of dementia, memory loss, and other mental health disorders. Online tools make genealogy research easier than ever, but this process is still very difficult. Much like completing a puzzle, seniors need to carefully pour over information to unlock key pieces of data. They can also turn their research into a group project by enlisting their family members to help. Ongoing social stimulation and interaction is another great way to slow age-related memory loss.

For families living in Milwaukee respite care can be a wonderful solution when their aging loved ones need companionship and socialization a few hours a week or just need minor assistance with daily household tasks. At Home Care Assistance, we thrive on helping seniors maintain their independence while living in the comfort of home. Give us a call at (414) 964-8000 to speak with one of our knowledgeable Care Managers and schedule a free in-home consultation.