The holidays are upon us! The holidays can be a stressful time with all the hustle and bustle, especially for our aging loved ones who may not be able to do as much anymore due to age-related physical or cognitive complications. There are still ways to get them involved in the process and have a wonderful time with them, no matter what. Keep reading below for some of our tips!
Visit the past. Ask your aging loved ones to talk about their memories of holidays when they were younger. Not only does reminiscing provide mental health benefits, but it’s a great way for grandkids to connect with their grandparents.
Plan for calm moments. While even the most extroverted of us like to have some time away from all the noise of the holidays, it can be even more important for older family members to get some downtime. Studies have shown that noise pollution can have a greater negative effect on older adults due to slower mental processing and sensory changes.
Watch out for the blues. Seniors are susceptible to Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), which is depression caused by reduced exposure to the sun and Vitamin D. They can also struggle with depression and loneliness during the holidays, especially this year when many older adults are separated from friends and family due to the pandemic. Make plans to check on your loved one regularly, and schedule visits for them to see friends and family members, even if it’s just through a window. If possible, take them outside when the weather is warmer and let them sit in the sun.
Keep living spaces clean and organized. Remove any clutter, and make sure electrical cords and other items are off the floor to avoid bumps, trips, and falls in both your senior’s home and any homes they will visit.
HOLIDAY ACTIVITIES TO ENJOY WITH YOUR SENIOR
Make your older family member’s holidays merry with these fun and safe activities:
Bake cookies together. Ask your senior to share their favorite cookie recipe with you, or try one neither of you has before!
Make a scrapbook. Have your senior give you old pictures or mementos, then gather some scrapbook supplies and craft a book of cherished memories together.
Have your kids make holiday crafts and cards and send them to your aging loved ones.
Let your seniors help you decorate your home, and help them decorate theirs to bring a little extra holiday spirit!
Take a drive! View holiday lights in small towns across the Western North Carolina area, including Forest City, Biltmore Village, Waynesville, Morganton, Hendersonville, and more, all without ever leaving your vehicle!
If you aren't able to provide your older loved one with the care and attention they need during the holidays, we can help! Call us at 828-684-6444 and find out how we can help make the holiday season a bright one for your senior!