If you don’t want to watch formerly active seniors waste an entire day in front of courtroom TV, you may need to give them some other ideas and facilitate other activities.
As seniors begin to decline they sometimes become hesitant to go out to eat or to organizations to which they used to belong. They fear embarrassment. That being said, they still have a need to socialize and stay mentally active. Senior companionship addresses these needs with enjoyable in home activities for seniors. The key for caregivers is to discover what seniors enjoy and engage in that activity with them.
Checkers, dominoes, Bridge, Phase-10, Skip-Bo, and chess are all games seniors may have enjoyed in the past that they continue to enjoy. Bingo is also an option if your parent’s friends are coming over.
Many seniors have craft-related hobbies they can still enjoy, given the opportunity. You may need to purchase the proper supplies, but let them engage in the creativity. It could be knitting, sewing, wood carving, or scrapbooking. Maybe they’ve always wanted to learn how to paint. It’s never too late to try something new.
Seniors who loved to bake in the past would probably still enjoy the activity provided they have some assistance. Tasks like kneading dough or icing cupcakes grow more difficult with the onset of arthritis, but seniors still have lots to teach you. Help them bake and you’ll learn the skill, too.
As long as their eyesight allows, readers will want to read. If concentration doesn’t allow for a long novel, provide anthologies or magazines instead. Public libraries continue to improve their selection of large print offerings, too. What a perfect field trip for a book lover!
There is something therapeutic about digging in the soil or stopping to smell the roses, literally. Even if the senior under your care is unable to get down in the flowerbeds, there are still activities you can offer to give them a gardening “fix”. Window boxes and potted plants are a great substitute. Another great option is taking a stroll through the garden, observing the changes as seasons pass.
Some of the best stories and conversations begin with looking at old pictures. Ask the questions you’ve always wanted to ask about certain family members, historic events, and everyday life as a kid. Record the answers on video or in writing to have when the storyteller is gone. They’ll enjoy reminiscing and you’ll learn more about their life and where they were when certain historic moments occurred. If they’re up to it, have them help you put the pictures in chronological order and write the names of folks in the pictures.
When you’re planning in home activities for seniors, think about what you would like to do on a rainy Saturday at home. Puzzles, a cup of tea, or any of the aforementioned activities might make the list. Chances are that the seniors in your life would enjoy them, too.