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How Senior Living Communities Are Innovating Adult Education

seniors taking a painting class as part of a senior living and adult education program

Modern senior living communities have evolved significantly over the past few decades. Where senior care facilities used to focus on providing care to older adults whose health issues precluded them from caring for themselves or otherwise aging in place at home, today’s senior living communities focus on promoting and supporting active lifestyles. 

One particular way senior living has changed is its focus on continuing education. Today’s seniors are living longer, healthier lives. Many use their retirement years to return to start new hobbies, become active in volunteerism, return to school, or start new careers. With research on the importance of maintaining cognitive health, senior living educational programs are on the rise. 

At Buckner Villas, we deeply understand and value the importance of lifelong learning. We are committed to providing our residents with various educational programs, ensuring their intellectual curiosity and thirst for knowledge are nurtured.

Call 512.580.9882 to learn more about the reassurance and confidence senior living at Buckner Villas can bring.

The Six Pillars of Brain Health

Organizations like the Global Council on Brain Health (GCBH), AARP, and the Alzheimer’s Association promote the six pillars of brain health. Like your body’s health, your brain’s health depends on several factors. Some things, like genetics, are beyond your control. However, lifestyle factors are not and have a significant impact on brain health. 

The following are identified as the six pillars to maintaining your brain health well into your senior years:

  1. Physical exercise – Regular exercise lowers the risk of developing Alzheimer’s, improves blood flow and memory, and stimulates brain chemicals that enhance mood, thinking, and learning.
  2. Mental fitness – Mental exercises promote new brain cell growth and improve your brain’s overall functioning. 
  3. Social interaction – Spending time with others, engaging in stimulating conversation, and participating in social activities can help protect against memory loss and mental health conditions like depression.
  4. Food and nutrition – As you age, your brain is exposed to more stress, causing oxidation that damages brain cells. Antioxidant-rich foods help fend off the effects of oxidation. 
  5. Relaxation and sleep – Healthy sleep habits increase energy levels, strengthen the immune system, improve mood, and reduce the build-up of an abnormal protein associated with Alzheimer’s. Managing stress also fends off age-related declines in brain functioning.
  6. Medical health – Many medical conditions contribute to an increased risk of dementia. Control medical risks by having annual check-ups, following your doctor’s recommendations, and adhering to medication schedules. 

Incorporating these lifestyle changes will improve your physical, psychological, and brain health, allowing you to make the most of your retirement years. 

How Senior Living Is Changing Higher Ed

One of the most recent innovations in senior adult education is the collaboration of senior living communities and colleges or universities. University-based retirement communities or University Retirement Communities (URCs) are a senior living option where residents can access advanced educational opportunities. URCs can take on many forms. Some are located on a university campus, while others are located nearby. 

At Buckner Villas, residents have access to multiple learning institutions in Austin, such as:

  • Austin Community College
  • Lifetime Learning Institute of Austin
  • AGE Computer Lab
  • The University of Texas at Austin Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (UT OLLI)

Courses at these institutions may be offered in person or online. Buckner Villas residents without vehicles can utilize our transportation services to access in-person classes. 

Call Buckner Villas for Senior Living Education Opportunities

Just minutes from downtown Austin, Buckner Villas provides numerous on-site educational opportunities for our residents and supports them in accessing ongoing education in the greater Austin community. Buckner has provided seniors with expert, quality care in Texas since 1954. We have watched the evolution of senior community living and kept up with the changing wants and needs of the senior population. 

Call Buckner Villas at 512.580.9882 or complete our online form. We can connect you with a caring staff member who can answer your questions and help you schedule a visit to observe senior community living at its best.