Getting out of the house to enjoy some outdoor activities with the senior in your life is easier than you might think. Spring has sprung in most areas of the country and any doctor will tell you that getting outdoors is good for all of us, especially after a long winter! Sunshine carries significant vitamins and other benefits that affect mood, balance and overall health. Want to know more?
The Benefits of Getting Outside
One of the main benefits of spending short times outdoors is just the time in the sunshine. Vitamin D is boosted by sunlight and that helps brain function, muscle strength, and even bone health. Many doctors actually prescribe Vitamin D as part of a treatment plan, so why not just get outside rather than pop another pill?
Being outdoors also gives seniors the chance to socialize, meet new people, take pets for a walk, etc. In short, being outside is excellent for mood and emotional stability!
Try doing things that your senior loved one has always enjoyed, such as gardening or walking. You may even find new hobbies that would interest them. Keep in mind that if it gets too warm, they may need to limit their time outside. Make sure they have plenty of water. Here are some other ideas:
1. Go see a sporting game the grandkids are playing in. Kids love having their family there to watch them play! Whether they win or not, it always boosts the self-confidence in children to have their grandparents there to watch!
2. Do something touristy. Take a tour through your city on a bus, trolley or another fun way to see the sights. Many cities have historical tours that are a very fun way to learn about where you live. This can be a great way to do something with your senior loved one that doesn’t require a lot of walking.
3. Find a fun place to eat. Try a restaurant you’ve never been to and help your loved one try something new. They may find a favorite new food!
Even More Ideas for Seniors to Get Outside
• Take a nice stroll. You might have to start short and build up, but it’s great exercise and time to be together.
• Visit with animals. This might be nothing more than putting a birdhouse up and sitting outside to enjoy the birds. Or, it might be a trip to the zoo or animal shelter. Playing with puppies or kittens is a wonderful way to boost mood and happiness!
• Have a Picnic. This can be a wonderful way to spend time together. It can be in the garden of an assisted living facility, your own backyard, or even a nice park. Pack some simple food, a blanket, and be sure to pick a shady area and bring lots of water. Sometimes watching children playing in the park can be very rewarding for seniors.
• Go watch holiday fireworks.
• Go out for a special treat like ice cream or coffee.
These are just a few great ideas for caregivers to spend time with seniors and enjoy getting outside more. You know your loved one best, so try doing things you know they will love. As always, ask them for their own ideas! Let them play a vital part in what you do. Most of them will tell you if you will only ask.
We hope this gives you some inspiring ideas to enjoy the great outdoors with the senior in your life! For more information, contact us today!
Home Helpers of Richmond is a locally-owned, trusted home health care agency and offers quality, compassionate senior in-home care services including home care assistance, personal care, companion care, respite care, 24 hour care and live-in care, Alzheimer's & dementia care as well as homemaker services in Richmond, Chesterfield, Glen Allen, Mechanicsville, Midlothian, Petersburg, Carytown, Highland Springs, Short Pump, Hopewell, Manakin Sabot, and Prince George County, Virginia.