Most of us want more for our aging parents than for them to be alone at home, feeling isolated from the outside world while they watch television programs one after another on repeat. Many seniors who need elder care at home are content to stay in their homes, in their comfort zone while they spend their days on the couch, but we know there is so much more out there for them!
It’s important for seniors to have active social lives, and the benefits include boosting their brain health and even lowering their risk for dementia!
Even if we understand the benefits of socialization on our seniors, sometimes getting them to step out of their comfort zones and take the first step to becoming more social is easier said than done.
Here are a few ways that you can help your senior become more social:
We live in a world where social media seeps into pretty much everything we do if we allow it. In fact, you are probably reading this from your phone or computer right now. Allowing your senior parent to have access to social media may help them to feel less isolated and more connected to the goings on of their family members including grandkids who may live out of state or can’t visit as often as they would like.
They might also find comfort in special support groups online for people sharing the same health issues or personal hobbies as they do.
With healthy limits and expectations, social media can be helpful in letting seniors create a life outside their daily elder care routine at home.
There are plenty of senior groups out there if you have the desire and know where to look. Your local library is a great place to start as they often have meeting rooms where special groups will gather regularly. If your senior is reluctant to join a new group, offer to go with them. Find out what their interest is, whether it’s gardening, reading, art, knitting, or games, and find a local group so your senior can be with like-minded seniors and get the socialization that they need and deserve.
Research has shown that having a companion animal can decrease blood pressure, reduce stress, prevent loneliness, and improve the overall health and well being of seniors. Having a dog that needs to be walked will not only give your senior a reason to adopt a healthier lifestyle, but may also increase their chances of meeting people outside of their home.
If your parent or senior doesn’t have a pet, or cannot have one due to health, mobility, or time constraints, consider reaching out to your local animal shelter to see how you can help your senior get the benefits that a companion animal can provide, like reading to an animal or taking them for walks.
If you or an aging loved one is considering hiring elder care in Lawrenceville, GA, please contact the caring staff at Home Helpers, call (678) 430-8511.