Healthy Aging

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Older adults can live longer, healthier lives by staying socially connected, increasing their levels of physical activity, eating in a healthy way, taking steps to minimize their risks for falls and refraining from smoking. The Health Unit supports older adults by advocating for age-friendly communities, and providing support and education regarding falls prevention, healthy eating, exercise, vaccinations and much more. 

Stay on Your Feet (SOYF) is a falls prevention strategy used across Northeastern Ontario to help older adults stay active, independent, and on their feet. SOYF offers a variety of falls prevention resources, free exercise classes in the community, and opportunities for networking and training.

Let's Be Active!

The best way to maintain your independence is to be physically active. The Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology (CSEP) recommends that older adults 65 years and older should participate in at least 150 minutes of physical activity a week to achieve health benefits. Free exercise classes are offered throughout the Nipissing and Parry Sound Districts for older adults.

Free Community Exercise Classes

Community exercise classes are free for older adults living in the community and aim to improve your strength and balance. Registration is not required for these classes. Classes include yoga, pole walking, and many more. See our community exercise class schedule to find a class near you!

Stand Up! - Fall Prevention Classes

Stand UP! is a free 12-week group exercise program offered twice a week in multiple communities in the Nipissing and Parry Sound districts. The program focuses on building balance, strength, and flexibility among older adults who live independently in the community. Stand UP! also includes education about various topics like medication management, vision and hearing, and choosing safe footwear. For more information on Stand UP! please contact 1-800-563-2808 ext. 5215.

Let's Be Social!

As we age, it is important to keep in touch with family and friends in order to reduce loneliness and feelings of isolation that can lead to depression, as well as mental and physical decline. Staying social can help to build relationships and improve your mental health. Engaging with others fosters a sense of belonging to a group, improve self-esteem, and help address isolation among older adults.

Social Connections and Supports

Interested in attending a seniors luncheon or day programs in your community to meeting and interact with others? Check out North East Support's interactive map to find programs available in your community!

Transportation

Accessible transportation services are essential for older adults to be able to continue to live independently in the community. SOYF has created an inventory of Transportation Services available to Older Adults in Nipissing and Parry Sound districts. You can also check out North East Support’s Transportation interactive map to find transportation services available in your community! 

Let's Be Strong!

Staying strong is a holistic approach to reducing and removing barriers to healthy aging.

Medication Management

Drug interactions around prescription medications and over the counter drugs can cause drowsiness and dizziness, which can lead to a fall. It is important to keep an updated list of prescription and over-the-counter medications with you at all times. Try to have all of your prescriptions filled at the same pharmacy, so your records are in one place. This will alert the pharmacist if a newly prescribed drug might cause an interaction with medications you are already on.

Unsure what questions to ask your doctor or pharmacist about your medications? Check out these 5 Questions to Ask and bring them to your next appointment. 

Home Hazards

The majority of falls occur in or around the home with many contributing environmental factors. It is important that we identify, remove and report hazards in and around homes in order to prevent a fall.

Some ways to remove hazards in your home include:

  • Keeping all walkways, ramps and stairs clear of clutter, wet leaves, snow, and ice.
  • Ensuring adequate lighting.
  • Removing unnecessary carpets.
  • Keeping emergency phone numbers beside the telephone.

Unsure where to begin? Check out the Home Safety Checklist to assist you in making your home a safer place to live.

Nutrition

Healthy eating is a key part of leading a healthy life. Nutrition is a key factor that can increase the risk of a fall due to weakness, weight loss and/or inadequate fluid intake. It is important to know about the available nutrition programs and services available in your area. Stay on Your Feet has created a summary of dietitian support, community food programs, and emergency food services, for certain areas in our district, as part of a Nutrition Project conducted in 2019.

Check out more information on Nutrition Programs and Services available in East Parry Sound, West Parry Sound, and Mattawa.

Additional resources include Canada’s Food Guide – Healthy Eating for Seniors and Unlock Food – Seniors Nutrition.

The Health Unit has a local SOYF coalition that includes community stakeholders, volunteers, and organizations that work on planning and implementing local activities to decrease the number of falls and fall-related injuries and support healthy independent living for older adults in the Nipissing and Parry Sound districts.

If you or your organization are interested in joining the coalition, please contact Taylor Matson at 705-474-1400 ext. 5215 (Nipissing District) or Samantha Docherty 705-746-5801 ext. 3222 (Parry Sound District) or healthy.living@healthunit.ca.

Quick Links:

North Bay

345 Oak Street West
705-474-1400

Parry Sound

70 Joseph Street Unit #302
705-746-5801

Burk's Falls

17 Copeland Street (by appointment only)
1-800-563-2808