Is your aging loved one becoming even less independent because of their health issues and more dependent on you and other family members for help? It’s common for many seniors who still live at home to struggle with daily tasks due to age-related conditions.
Thanks to retirement, loss of friends, and increasing health issues, it’s not uncommon for aging adults to spend more time at home alone.
Of course, this can lead to boredom, loneliness, and isolation. If you are worried about your aging loved one becoming too bored, there are many things you can do to help out.
Your elderly loved one may be putting their physical and mental health at risk if they spend long hours alone without interaction or stimulation. Surprisingly, chronic boredom can seriously affect an elderly person’s mental health. Physical health issues might be high blood pressure, overeating or undereating, alcohol abuse, chronic stress and low energy. Mental health issues include low self-esteem, anxiety, and depression. Family caregivers can make a difference in filling their aging loved one’s days and weeks with activities that eliminate loneliness and boredom.
One of the best ways that aging adults can overcome boredom is by having a companion with them when they would otherwise be alone.
This can be a combination of family members, friends, fellow congregants, and home care providers. Hiring a home care provider is the most consistent way to ensure an aging relative has a compassionate, experienced companion with them. The home care provider can help facilitate activities for the aging adult and assist in other ways to give them time to do what they love. Home care providers are on hand to assist with self-care, housekeeping, and meals in addition to companionship.
Family caregivers should put some focus on the different types of activities available to their aging loved ones who are often homebound.
It requires matching up the senior’s interests and abilities, then finding things for them to do that are engaging and even fun. Ideas include gardening, birdwatching, hobbies, video games, reading, online classes, exercise, crafts, and podcasts. When aging adults have a regular schedule to follow that offers a few different activities, they are much less likely to be bored.
If possible, an elderly adult can attend community events outside the home. Usually with the help of a home care provider, the senior can go to activities at the local senior center, community theater, shopping, or to a local tourist attraction like an art gallery, museum or zoo. Of course, a lot depends on the aging adult’s physical health and their ability to get out and about.
You have the opportunity to enrich your elderly loved one’s life by alleviating them from boredom and adding meaning and fun. With the help of family members, neighbors and home care providers, your elderly loved one can have a satisfying schedule that brings them joy.