Aging is inevitable. This is a part of life, and you can’t escape it. Sometimes, life isn’t so much about quantity but a measure of quality. Older seniors often face losses in the quality of their lives before they pass on. It’s not enough to attend to their medical needs. You also need to see to their emotional and mental needs. This helps them have a positive view of life. Showing them a positive view of life can alleviate some medical issues they face. So, how can you make a senior happier? Here are a few tips to keep older seniors engaged and smiling.
Consider a Senior Center
Most rural and metropolitan areas have senior centers. These are areas designated for the elderly where they can connect and make friends. Some even offer entertainment and social games. If you’re planning on looking after your loved ones, enroll them in a senior center near you. If your aged family member isn’t the “joiner” type, encourage him or her to at least try. You can even accompany them to a seniors event.
Take them for Walks
Taking walks is an excellent opportunity for your aging loved ones. This allows them to go out and experience the best of nature. Prepare your food, blankets, and a shaded area where you can have a picnic. When having the picnic, engage them in light conversations. Talk about their experiences in the past. Such discussions will make them happy. Also, they’ll help strengthen their social and cognitive skills.
The human touch is a communication element that cuts across time and age. Or why do you think elder seniors look forward to their masseuse or chiropractor appointments? It’s simple: they desire to be touched. As age takes a toll on seniors, they may begin to feel lonely. This is why you need to be more constant with your emotional expressions. These can include a hug, back rubs, or holding hands.
Play Games or Puzzles
In most cases, boredom leads to a depressed mood. When a senior member spends too much time thinking about what they’ve lost in life, they can fall into an emotional slump. You can turn this narrative around for your loved one. Try searching for games and puzzles designed for older people. Please make time to play these games with them. However, don’t get something too simple: it can demean your loved one.
Engage them in Physical Activity
Exercising has immense benefits to mental, physical, emotional, and cognitive abilities. Encourage your loved one to exercise regularly. Walking, jogging, or even clapping hands to music can stimulate blood flow. This can relieve anxiety, stress and encourage heart health. Also, exercise improves sleep quality, builds stamina, and can alleviate depression.
Remind them They’re Needed
Everyone, including you, wants to feel needed. Show your elderly loved ones that they’re needed. You can find several ways to make them feel needed and valuable. Older people fear that they can become a burden. Try and make them feel like they’re a contributing member of the household. This helps alleviate the fear they may have of becoming a burden. You can also find other ways to make them feel wanted.
Allow them to Participate in Planned Activities
Sometimes, recreational activities aren’t only for kids. Anyone in any stage of life can participate in simple tasks such as decorating things. This is also something the elderly can do. Invite your family members over. Ask your elderly loved ones to join in. This will make them happy since they can interact with their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. Remember: older people love their grandchildren the most.
Tag them Along for Events
Concerts, community festivities, theater, and other social activities are better enjoyed with company. If your elder loved one has you to accompany them, he or she might have an opportunity to do something they never do alone. Also, try doing things your loved one has liked in the past.
A picture is worth a thousand words. Capture those enjoyable moments to preserve the memories of happy events. Seniors love to peruse through photo albums and reminisce about happy memories. You can also present them with a frame of such pictures to hang in their houses. Along with a gallery frame, gift them with other gifts they may find interesting.
There’s a lot at stake when caring for your elderly loved one. You want to handle their needs without making them feel like a burden. During their last days, give them all the best you can. This isn’t something they’ll forget easily. Remember: they sacrificed their time and lives to provide the care you needed while growing up. Try and return the favor.