Tips For A Safe And Happy Holiday Season
Support Your Senior’s Safety and Happiness During The Holidays
For seniors, the holiday season means abrupt changes in routine, decor, diet, and more that can hinder seniors’ safety and make days feel long and stressful. Use these tips to ensure your seniors experience a happy and healthy holiday!
Top Challenges To A Senior’s Holiday Safety
Some of the biggest challenges for seniors during the holidays include:
- Traveling alone
- Disruptions to daily routines
- Missed medications
- Unhealthy food choices
- Lack of exercise
- Gift expenses
- Too much activity
Mental and Emotional Health Tips For Seniors
For most people, holidays such as Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, and New Year’s are days filled with happiness and celebration amongst family and friends. For many seniors, however, the holidays can be stressful, confusing, and even lonely. Help prevent depression and anxiety with the tips listed below!
- Encourage social activity, even if you must use technology such as video chat and FaceTime.
- Suggest holiday activities such as decorating, crafting, or shopping for gifts.
- Prepare healthy versions of holiday food favorites.
- Ask about their favorite holiday traditions and memories.
- Listen and sympathize if a senior asks you for help.
Travel Tips For Seniors
While visiting with loved ones is a wonderful source of joy and togetherness, traveling can present a challenge for many seniors. Those planning on traveling during the holidays should:
- Talk to a doctor about any health concerns prior to departure.
- Pack enough medication to cover the duration of the trip.
- Make sure any time zone changes do not affect scheduled medication times.
- Wear compression socks while flying or driving long distances.
- Bring copies of important documents such as health insurance cards and emergency contact numbers.
- Give loved ones a copy of your travel itinerary.
- Carry all medications and essential travel items on the plane or in the car just in case you encounter a disruption or emergency.
- Consider wearing a medical ID.
- Use hand sanitizer and frequently wash your hands to avoid germs.
- Ask for an escort or wheelchair to help navigate through airports safely and efficiently.
- Remember to stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
Fun Holiday Activities For Seniors
Spread cheer amongst your senior loved ones by:
- Making wreaths, stockings, or other home-made decorations
- Reminiscing about past memories and/or long-standing traditions
- Listening to classic holiday tunes
- Preparing beloved holiday foods
- Connecting with your loved ones
- Picking out presents and cards
- Going for a walk (indoors if it’s chilly!)
- Watching holiday movies
Home Care Tip: For seniors with memory-related disorders, deviations from daily routines can be especially troublesome. Caregivers can help by writing things down, especially any holiday-related schedule changes. Setting automatic reminders for medications can also be very helpful!