30 Apr

Active Ageing

Ageing with a brain injury   

The process of ageing is a normal part of life, but it can impact people living with a brain injury differently. Older individuals with a brain injury can often experience poor memory and can have periodic forgetfulness. It’s also important to note that individuals of any age with a brain injury are more likely to develop dementia as they age and sleep disorders. However, as we age, there are things we can do too slow ageing and improve the quality of our life even as we grow older. 

Ways to stay active


One of the leading causes of brain injuries in the wider community is older people experiencing a significant fall, typically where head trauma is involved. These incidents can be reduced and limited with a more active lifestyle that involves some kind of manageable exercise routine. Exercise typically leads to an overall improvement of the athleticism of an individual and helps maintain balance. Other benefits of exercise include elevated moods, increased energy and in some cases increased brain function.  

Social Interaction 

It’s key for all individuals to enjoy social interaction and connection with other people, especially when ageing as the factors that contribute to isolation increase.  Isolation can be felt with factors such as loss of friends and family, restriction in ability to move around the community without significant help and other health factors that limit normal daily activities. Maintaining social connections helps reduce the feelings of isolation and loneliness, a key factor in maintaining positive mental health as we age. 

Simple social interactions that can be important and uplifting could include: 

  • Getting a coffee at a cafe  
  • Seeing friends or family 
  • Volunteering with a local group 
  • Seeing a movie 
  • Joining a group, hobby or sports team.

Mindfulness of Mental Health 

We know from research that individuals who have experienced a brain injury are at a higher risk of developing often debilitating mental illness issues, especially depression. Mental illness can impact physical health, relationships, friendships, general quality of life and increase loneliness. As we age we should be mindful of how we feel mentally and especially when experiencing more than usual amounts of stress. It is important to reach out to people around you, especially your carer or doctor if you think you’re experiencing mental health issues. 

Help and Information

If you are concerned with your mental health, reach out to Synapse, Lifeline or 13 Yarn. 

For more information on ageing contact one of our special ageing consultants here. 

If you want to read more about ageing with a brain injury you can read our factsheet here.