During this time of stress and isolation for the elderly, it’s becoming quite challenging for clients to maintain adequate mental health.
Seniors who are already staying at home and practicing social distancing for a while are now getting stressed due to the current living situations, which is undeniably a matter of concern for the ones caring for their family members.
While it’s crucial to follow the government guidelines on COVID-19, it’s equally important to ensure the emotional well-being of your dear ones.
Since social distancing and isolation can adversely affect the mental health of elderly individuals especially for the ones with underlying diseases, seniors need to get engaged in activities that relieve mental stress and improve their overall well-being during the global pandemic.
Let’s have a look at some of the activities that help seniors stay socially and mentally stimulated during tough times.
Help with Technology
Many of the elderly aren’t tech-savvy, which is perhaps the reason they’re always struggling to perform basic tasks with their smartphones.
This is the perfect time for seniors to get familiar with technology and learn the ways they can enhance their living and become socially active.
You can teach them to operate appliances remotely or to watch their favorite movies/shows on their smartphone at a single tap or by using voice commands through a smart assistant.
Apart from this, you can help them use health applications that can eventually track their overall health and provide better insights about their activities and the areas that need to be focused to improve their health.
Leveraging Social Media
It would be a great idea to help your seniors get hands-on social media platforms including- Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Using these social media platforms to connect with old friends and acquaintances can help them enjoy this time by watching and sharing pictures, videos, and stories.
Teach them to connect with their friends through video or group video calls. Also, you can help them in finding some communities where they can get helpful resources to navigate the current crisis in a better way and can also share their personal experiences with lockdown.
Indoor game can be really fun and help ensure that their mind remains active and engaged. You can choose the game per their preference including puzzles, crosswords, or Sudoku.
Apart from this, you can always teach them online games like solitaire, or any other multiplayer games, which can be played with their friends and relatives.
Being a caregiver, it’s your responsibility to fill the gap of socialization. You need to be a companion for the elderly and must ensure that they aren’t feeling isolated during this time.
Talk about their family, feelings, current events, or their life’s journey to make them feel connected & appreciated. This will also invoke positivity and help them in minimizing any stress caused during the global pandemic.
One can also share their stories with them or seek advice from the seniors as they hold a good experience in life. This will again motivate them and improve their mental condition, especially if they’re already going through a medical condition.
Reading and Writing
Reading can stimulate imagination and improve mental health. Ask your elderly to check out some good books or magazines. It would be nice if you shortlist some good ones based on their interest so that they can relax their mind.
Moreover, if you’re caring for the ones with Dementia/ Alzheimer’s, you can also tell them stories or read some good books for them.
On the other hand, if your dear ones are passionate about writing or they want to try their hands on writing a masterpiece, why not consider this the time?
Whether it’s a fictional story or journaling, this is the right time to do it. Also, this is the perfect time for them to write their personal history for their children & grandchildren.
Some other activities include- YouTube, podcasts, and TV series.
A caregiver must ensure that their seniors are living an easy life but they need to take extra care during the current crisis. The above-mentioned activities can help caregivers minimize stress and keep their loved ones engaged.
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