There’s plenty of evidence suggesting staying socially active can help seniors remain mentally alert while also minimizing issues with isolation, anxiety, and depression. If you’re caring for an older parent and seeing signs he or she is no longer as socially active as before, be proactive and provide a nudge and assistance to be more involved and engaged. Here are six tips to consider.
1. Assist with Transportation
One of the reasons your parent may not be as socially active is because he or she is having difficulty getting out and about, especially if he or she recently had to stop driving for health and safety reasons. If this is the case, either make an effort to provide transportation for your loved one whenever possible or take advantage of local services that offer rides for seniors, such as in-home care.
Receiving transportation to social events can make it easier for seniors to enjoy happier and healthier lives. If your elderly loved one needs help maintaining a high quality of life while aging in place, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a trusted provider of Denver home care. Our caregivers provide transportation to and from medical appointments and social events, nutritious meal preparation, assistance with daily exercise, and help with everyday tasks like bathing, grooming, and light housekeeping.
2. Encourage Regular Exercise
Exercise can be a great way to stay healthy and interact with other people at the same time, and it could involve participating in yoga, water aerobics, or low-impact workout classes specially designed with older adults in mind. Even simply going for daily walks around the neighborhood can give your loved one many opportunities to interact with others.
3. Suggest Volunteering
In addition to giving your parent a way to fill his or her time, volunteering also creates a sense of purpose and allows your loved one to interact with others who are sure to appreciate his or her efforts. Even if your parent isn’t fully mobile, he or she can still do things like help out with a blood drive sign-up, mentor school-age children, or lend a hand with other tasks while sitting.
4. Plan Activities in the Home
If the main reason your loved one isn’t social is because it’s not as easy to get out without needing assistance, find ways to bring social activities to his or her home. There are many simple and creative ways to do this on a regular basis. Possibilities include:
• Having family game nights
• Inviting other family members and your loved one’s friends over for weekly dinners or brunches where everyone contributes or brings something
• Playing interactive video games with simple concepts that involve multiple players
The ability to remain at home and live independently is beneficial for older adults in a variety of ways. Many seniors prefer aging in place over moving to an assisted living facility. If your senior loved one needs assistance to remain safe and comfortable while living at home, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading at-home care agency. Our dedicated in-home caregivers can assist with meal prep, bathing and grooming, exercise, medication reminders, and many other important tasks.
5. Help Your Loved One Get Active on Social Media
Pew Research Center reports that 46 percent of adults 65 and older currently use Facebook on a regular basis. If your parent has yet to explore social media, take some time to get him or her started. From sending instant messages to video chatting, there are many ways older adults can interact via a social platform they feel comfortable using.
6. Encourage Your Parent to Learn New Skills
A productive way to socially interact is by learning new skills with other adults. Local colleges and senior centers often offer free or discounted classes for seniors looking to learn new skills. Plus, acquiring new skills stimulates multiple parts of the brain, which can stave off age-related cognitive decline.
For families living in Denver, respite care can be a wonderful solution when their aging loved ones need companionship and socialization a few hours a week or just need minor assistance with daily household tasks. At Home Care Assistance, we thrive on helping seniors maintain their independence while living in the comfort of home. To speak with one of our friendly Care Managers and schedule a free in-home consultation, call (720) 443-3371 today.