While we are able to see the light at the end of the tunnel, the COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on our physical and emotional wellbeing. Months of isolation and physical separation from those we’re closest to has taken a toll on emotional health for seniors and the people they love.
Establish a Routine
Having an established schedule helps set the tone for the day and supports emotional health. Regardless of what the day’s schedule may be, wake up at a specific time and follow a routine. For example:
- 7 a.m. – Get up and ready for the day
- 8 a.m. – Have a wholesome breakfast
- 9 a.m. – Stretching, mindfulness, meditation/prayer, and exercise
- 10 a.m. – Call or video chat with a family member or friend
- 11 a.m. – Work on a puzzle or any other mentally-stimulating activity
- 12 p.m. – Lunch
- Afternoon: An outing, walk, housework, engagement in a hobby or pastime, etc.
- 5 p.m. – Dinner
- 6 p.m. – Wind down for the day by watching a movie, reading, listening to music, or doing some other soothing activity
- 9 p.m. – Get ready for bed
Needless to say, the routine does not need to be rigidly followed; however, it serves as the framework to prevent the urge just to settle into the sofa for the day.
Exercise Every Day
Aim for no less than 15 minutes every day of some kind of doctor-approved physical exercise: riding a stationary bike, taking a walk around the neighborhood or on a treadmill, or following along with a recorded exercise program. Include some balance and stretching exercises as well to bolster muscles and help prevent falls.
Reach Out to Others
Even with physical distancing requirements in place, social connection is essential. We know that isolation is extremely hazardous to an older adult’s health and wellbeing, and it’s critical that socialization be a top priority. Safe choices to stay connected include communicating with other people through social networking along with other online platforms, using virtual meeting software like Skype or Zoom to “visit” with close friends and family, and joining online classes, clubs, and support groups. And of course, an in-home caregiver from Inspired Home Care, a top-rated provider of elder care in Barrington, IL and the surrounding communities, is an excellent way for older adults to safely enjoy companionship with others. We are also available to help seniors set up and make use of the necessary technology to stay connected with friends and family. Email us for details!
Try Something New
Intellectual engagement sparks creativity and helps preserve cognitive functioning. The choices are endless! Learn a new language, play memory and word games online, pick up a new hobby that you’ve always wanted to try. Reward yourself for the achievements, too!
Take the Time to Relax
Depression and anxiety are increasing as a consequence of the pandemic, in people of all ages. Overcome mental health problems by getting adequate sleep, spending some time engaging in relaxing activities daily, and getting outdoors as much as possible. Simply relaxing on the porch and listening to the birds is usually remarkably calming and uplifting.
Inspired Home Care, a Better Business Bureau accredited and A+ rated home care provider, is always available to help enhance physical and emotional health for seniors along with family caregivers. Our experienced respite care services let family members take time away from caregiving responsibilities for self-care. Senior loved ones also discover an enhanced quality of life through our full selection of home care services. A win-win! Give us a call at 847-787-7572 to set up a free in-home consultation and to learn more about our top-rated elder care in Barrington, IL and the surrounding areas.