For many seniors, this time of year can bring about a roller coaster of emotions. In tandem with experiencing the joy of family, friends, and holiday activities, feelings of loss, depression, and exhaustion can result in an overload of stress. To help balance out the season for the seniors you love, try some of these tips, courtesy of AARP:
- Don’t try to do it all. It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking we need to embrace every opportunity the holiday season offers, but the reality is, seniors need plenty of downtime in the midst of the festivities. Try to match your pace to that of your senior loved ones, and treasure the times of relaxation together as much as the bustle of shopping and parties.
- Honor old traditions while introducing the new. While it’s important to uphold certain traditions that are valued by your senior loved ones, realize that they may invoke some measure of sadness for times gone by. Try implementing some brand new traditions that the whole family can agree upon and enjoy together, such as watching a new holiday movie while stringing popcorn and cranberries, constructing a gingerbread house, or a game of holiday charades.
- Keep an eye on health issues. The busyness of the holidays can mask the subtle signs of health concerns if we’re not careful to pay attention to the cues our senior loved ones are exhibiting. Keep a watchful eye out for signs such as changes in sleeping or eating habits, which could indicate physical or emotional issues that need to be addressed.
- Think ahead before venturing out. When accompanying a senior to a holiday outing, a little advance planning can go a long way towards ensuring his or her comfort and safety. For example, before hitting the mall for a day of shopping, map out the locations of rest rooms, review meal options (taking into consideration any dietary restrictions), check on wheelchair accessibility or rental options, etc.
- Allow time to just be together. The best gift you can give your senior loved ones is that of your unhurried time and undivided attention. Simply setting aside an afternoon to visit over a cup of tea, without any other obligations or distractions, shows you care in a way unlike any other.
A professional home care agency, such as Nightingale Homecare, can enhance the holidays for seniors and their families even further. We allow families the opportunity to spend quality time together with activities they can enjoy, while our experienced Phoenix senior caregivers assist with the more mundane aspects of care, such as light housekeeping, bathing and grooming, meal planning and preparation, and much more.
We also provide nursing, therapy, and other home health care services as needed, so seniors can remain safe, comfortable, and as independent as possible, right at home. Contact us to learn more about our Arizona in-home care services and how we can make life easier and more enjoyable for your senior loved one!