How to Take Care of Your Older Adults at Home During the Holiday Season
With the holidays upon us, it’s time to sit back, relax, and be thankful for the good things in our lives. It’s also a busy season filled with lots of things to do.
The holidays can be particularly tough for older adults, as they have to deal with the weather, the flu, and potentially being cooped up in the house. The season's demands can also be an additional challenge for caregivers, causing caregiver burnout.
Here are some tips to plan out time this holiday season amazing for your older adult loved ones - without overworking yourself:
Plan out time to plan healthy meals
With the festive season just ahead, it may be difficult to prepare healthy meals for your older adults, unless you’re deliberate about it.
You can draw up a timetable of wholesome, nutritious meals for them, and make out time to prepare them. A balanced diet can strengthen their immune system and protect them from the flu and other illnesses particular to the weather.
Prepare for weather changes
The holiday season can bring extreme fluctuations in weather and temperature, which can negatively impact your loved one’s health. Layering can make them more comfortable during the season.
So, ensure that protective gear is available, including boots, gloves, and hats. You can also have salt and shovels handy to keep walkways and porches free of snow.
Recognize the signs of seasonal depression
The holiday season is often a period when your loved ones suffer some form of depression, which may be triggered by their health condition or even their medication.
Learn to identify these signs, and do what you can to help them stave off the feelings of loneliness and negativity.
You can have friends and family visit, get them involved in their favorite activities, or devise new, engaging means of entertainment for them. You should also spend as much time with them as you can.
Take help whenever you can get it
Everything you do should be in the spirit of the season, which means showing gratitude and accepting help from family members and loved ones who offer to do so.
Remember that you can't do it all on your own.
Sharing the duties of caring for your older adults with other willing family members can help you shed some of the mental and physical burdens. Plus, you'll get to enjoy the holidays even more.
Get them involved in the preparations
Make your older adults feel a part of the festivity, no matter their condition. If they are mobile, you can have them assist in decorating, unpacking, wrapping gifts, or lifting objects.
If they aren’t mobile, you can seek their advice on decorations and discuss surprises, gift items, or holiday trips with them. This makes them feel a part of the festivities and gets them in the holiday mood.
If you’re going on a holiday trip, ensure that you travel safely and consider everything you need to make them comfortable in transit and when you arrive at your destination. You should:
- Pick the safest routes
- Check the weather forecast before setting out
- Always have a full tank of gas for road trips
Make the holidays memorable for your older adult loved ones
Caring for your older adults doesn’t have to take away all the fun out of the festive season. By doing the right thing, you can make the holidays memorable for you and them - without the stress.
At CarePatrol of the Lehigh Valley and Upper Bucks, we have several years of experience in senior care consultation. We can advise you on how best to make your loved ones comfortable and happy this season. Give us a call today, and we’ll be glad to help.