The holidays are a time of family time, gift giving and traditions. All of this makes December a magical time for many of us. There are however senior citizens that find this time more challenging for various reasons. Safety is so important at all times but this season presents additional concerns. Then there is the issue of loneliness at this time of year.
Health and Safety
Winter weather can be treacherous. Depending on where a senior lives, snow or rain can be a huge issue. If it’s snowing, perhaps someone can shovel a walkway and bring groceries. If it is raining, make sure to walk slowly so as not to slip and fall. Take your time walking and wear, non-slip footwear. Again, have family members, neighbors or friends run errands for you.
Bad weather can also cause power outages. So make sure you are prepared. Have lots of candles and working flashlights. It is also important to have warm blankets, water, and some snacks that don’t need heating up.
Doing things out of the ordinary at this time of year is very common. If a senior wants a Christmas tree, perhaps decorating it can be something that you do to help out. Climbing a ladder to string lights or carrying heavy packages are not things a senior should be doing. Taking a loved one out shopping for gifts would certainly be a great way to ensure their safety. Parking in shopping mall garages, carrying packages can make them a target for someone who is looking to cause harm.
Your health is another issue that can be of concern. As a senior, you are more prone to contracting seasonal cold and flu viruses. It is important to make sure you are getting lots of rest each night and getting a flu shot. Other factors that can fight off the flu or cold are healthy eating; appropriate exercise (walking the mall is a great indoor activity); and last, washing hands regularly.
The holiday season is supposed to be a happy and festive time. For some seniors, however, this may not be the case. Seniors can face new physical challenges such as loss of mobility, loss of sight and/or hearing. They can also face the loss of family members/spouse and friends. You can help a loved navigate these challenges.
Visiting with seniors whether in their home or in a facility is such a gift. Listen to their stories about their pasts. Show them they are loved and remembered. The smile you see on their face will show you how important you are. Decorating their home with holiday decorations and baking their favorite treats are great ways to provide companionship. Take them to a movie or watch old movies on TV are lots of fun. They most certainly have old photos they cherish. Ask to look at them and ask questions about the people in the photos. The history you will learn is amazing. It also allows them a chance to reminisce. Giving them your time is the best gift they will receive. If you have any questions regarding companionship or the health and safety of a senior feel free to call Indecare for a free consultation. https://www.indecareathome.com/contact/