COVID isolation is tough on all of us, but it’s especially tough on seniors and their caregivers. Hugs go a long way in buoying all our spirits. However, social distancing from others is one of the best ways to stay healthy during the coronavirus. But, that doesn’t mean isolation is easy. For many people, including seniors, isolation is the most challenging part of the pandemic. Although there’s nothing quite like spending time with loved ones, there are many safe activities seniors can enjoy while remaining self-isolated. Physical isolation doesn’t have to mean mental isolation. We’re all in this together, and there are still plenty of ways to offer–and give–support.
Even when caregivers can’t visit, they can still support their loved ones by suggesting activities that foster good mental health. The activities below can help you and your loved ones manage social isolation safely.
Participate in Uplifting Activities Daily
A daily routine is more important than ever for a senior’s psychological well being. Adding uplifting activities can help all of us feel positive, even though we experience some daily challenges. And, it’s not always the big things that lift our spirits. A newly budding flower or the smell of freshly mown grass can create a small moment of happiness.
- Adopt a daily routine for better sleep, lower stress, and improved health.
- Embrace yoga and meditation for relaxation and stress reduction.
- Add mood-boosting foods to your daily diet.
- Spend time outside (as long as it’s safe) in order to enjoy the benefits of nature.
Connect without Risking Your Health
Feeling connected to others can boost your mood and keep you healthier. Finding ways to stay in touch is an excellent solution to feeling isolated.
- Explore virtual ways to remain connected to loved ones.
- Take free virtual YMCA classes from home.
- Join a pen pal program to exchange written letters.
- Set up a regular “check in” day with your family members.
Take Steps to Make Home Safer
Both caregivers and seniors themselves need to recognize safety concerns at home and beyond. Consider these steps to address health and safety.
- Address long-distance caregiving challenges while in isolation; Marylee MacDonald’s caregiver blog can help.
- Recognize dangers in your own house and act to prevent them.
- Know the symptoms of depression so you can spot them if you’re feeling gloomy. If you’re a caregiver, be on the lookout for mood changes in loved ones.
Remaining at home during the pandemic isn’t easy, especially for seniors who feel socially isolated. The good news is that there are many ways to remain connected or find new connections. Staying safe doesn’t have to mean going it alone, and seniors have many resources to rely on during these tough times.
Photo via Rawpixel