The pandemic has impacted everyone at some level and continues to do so. Whether it’s knowing someone who had it or experiencing it yourself, COVID-19 has had far reaching effects. The pandemic has gone on longer than many anticipated and people of all kinds – especially seniors – are feeling scared, disengaged, lonely, or anxious.
Here are some tips on helping seniors cope with the impact of the coronavirus.
#1: Focus on Meaningful Connection.
Finding connection in a time of separation can be difficult, and it may take some creativity. Meaningful connection doesn’t always have to be in-person. This could be simply a deep conversation with a loved one about a specific topic. Maybe it’s something they are passionate about, sharing a memory or story that is particularly important to them, or something else that helps them open-up and foster connection with you or someone else they trust.
Stretching and other light physical activity does wonders for physical and mental health. Seniors don’t have to be doing an aerobics class to move, either. Taking time to be physically active around their home or garden is easier than one might think. Even a short walk around the block every day can help prevent restlessness and help maintain strong bone, muscle, and joint health. It also allows for increased oxygen to the brain which promotes greater cognitive function.
#3: Exercise the Brain.
Loneliness and anxiety for prolonged periods of time can be damaging to emotional and mental health. Taking care of your brain is an important way to stay healthy. Flexing the brain with crosswords, brain games, puzzles, or writing activities is one place to start. Mom or Dad could also pass the time learning a new skill or hobby. It doesn’t have to be anything major; photography, poetry,, art, or making a TikTok video can all do wonders for the soul!
If a loved one in your life is experiencing more than usual sadness or worry, it’s important to talk to a medical professional, as they could be at risk for more serious mental health issues. Together, families and adult caregivers can work to help elderly citizens to come through the pandemic safe and healthy.
Many have chosen to hire in-home caregivers and companions for loved ones as an alternative to long-term care facilities. Aging in place allows one to maintain a sense of independence, and companionship care introduces new friendships that make life interesting.
If you do choose to hire in home care for Mom or Dad, keep in mind that you will have an employment tax obligation if you pay anyone more than $2,300 in calendar year 2021. HomeWork Solutions can help you understand your tax and legal obligations, and can ever take the burden off your hands. Just give us a call at 800.626.4829 for a free consultation.