5 Tips to Bust Quarantine Blues
Struggling to help your senior stay connected while he or she is socially distancing? With experts uncertain as to when a vaccine will be available or how effective it will be, social distancing may be a way of life for a long time. For those of us able to don a mask and safely get out, social distancing is less isolating. High-risk seniors don’t have this option; they’re stuck at home, feeling isolated and bored. Here are some tips to help your loved one beat the quarantine blues.
1. Find a project. Does your loved one have years of photos sitting in boxes? Organize them by year, event, or vacation and create scrapbooks. He or she may want to go digital but might need a little help. DayBreak caregivers can help scan and upload photos to a digital photo service. An advantage of using a digital photo service, like Vista Print, is that your senior can order several copies to gift friends and family who aren’t able to visit.
2. Help others in need. If your senior is crafty, crochets, knits, quilts, or sews, making gifts for others in need gives meaningful connection, even if the giver and receiver never meet. People in homeless shelters, children’s homes, and assisted living centers would love to receive a needed handmade gift. An expectant mother using a crisis pregnancy center would surely appreciate a handmade gift for her baby. Gifting family and friends a one of a kind, handmade sweater, scarf, or blanket would also be a great way to connect.
3. Adopt a pet. This one is a biggie in terms of commitment and cash, but an older dog or cat may be a great companion for a senior, especially during the quarantine. If your senior lives alone, take your senior’s ability to care for a pet into consideration.
4. Use technology or good old-fashioned snail mail. FaceTime and Zoom are popular tools to keep in touch with family and friends. Your senior’s house of worship may be conducting virtual services; participating would go a long way to reduce isolation. If your loved one isn’t tech-savvy and is able, teach him or her to use these services. Many seniors have trouble due to dementia or vision problems; if this is the case, our DayBreak caregivers can lend a helping hand. Maybe your senior prefers to handwrite letters; a pen pal may be a great way to connect and ease loneliness, especially if that pen pal is a young child just learning to read and write. A young child’s drawings and spelling can be good for a laugh. Another quarantining family member or friend in the same boat may enjoy corresponding with your senior too.
5. Get outdoors. Just because your senior is social distancing, it doesn’t mean they can’t get outside, take in some sunshine, and if they don’t have mobility issues, some movement. An outdoor walk with a friend or family member might be possible if social distancing is practiced – staying at least 6 ft. apart and wearing a mask if your senior is able. If your loved one is mobile, there are senior exercise videos available that are enjoyable and may help your senior maintain strength and mobility. Be sure to stay hydrated.
Use these tips to keep your loved one connected, healthier, and happier. DayBreak caregivers are here to help you as you help your senior.