Indoor Activities for Elderly & Senior Loved Ones and their Caregivers
Plan indoor activities for Elderly & Senior loved ones to improve and maintain mental and physical health and wellbeing.
Create an engaging experience for your loved one and their Caregiver. 10-20 minutes of your time to plan indoor activities for your loved one changes their world. Whether they are restricted to indoor activities due to weather or mobility – with planning and care, you and your Caregiver can create a fun and engaging tool box of simple activities, games, and other ways to bring positivity and joy to your loved one.
Always be sure to discuss your plans with your loved one’s Caregiver and Physician to ensure they have the mental and physical capabilities to participate in the activities. Remember, the #1 goal is to create a SAFE, patient, frustration-free, and engaging environment for your loved one.
At a loss for ideas? What were their hobbies, interests, and daily activities before the effects of aging, dementia, disease, and so on? Car enthusiast? Civil War buff? Culinary arts? Woodworking or restoration projects? Just because they can no longer do those activities themselves, doesn’t mean that the subject matter has to be different. Have the conversation with your Caregiver – they will appreciate your ideas to keep your loved one engaged in tasks or activities that bring them joy and a sense of accomplishment. Simple activities with routine can provide a sense of familiarity and security.
- Find television series and movies on their favorite topics, and rotate them throughout the week.
- Collect a set of photographs, postcards, home videos, and letters for your Caregiver to show to your loved one.
- Provide audio books of their favorite authors and novels.
- If safe to do so after consultation from their physician – try folding laundry, cutting vegetables, rolling dough, making simple recipes.
- Give your Caregiver a list of topics and questions to ask your loved one when they are feeling bored, restless, frustrated, or depressed.
- Puzzles, board games, card games, and YES – VIDEO games! The National Institute of Aging, part of the NIH, along with many other reputable organizations, have found the potential for video games to improve the memory of older adults. While it is not a cure or treatment for dementia and the effects of aging – the positive neurological benefits could improve your loved one’s quality of life. Read more here: https://www.nia.nih.gov/news/video-games-show-potential-improving-key-aspects-memory-older-adults
- After consultation from their physician, plan mobility exercises with small rewards when completed, like a healthy smoothie or ice cream cone.
- Have your Caregiver help your loved one write messages and send postcards to their friends and family.
- Stock a pile of magazines and other publications with large, easy to view images of their favorite places or interests.
- At a loss for more ideas? Why not sit down and ask? Their interests may have changed, just like the rest of us!
What you do matters – at times it’s tough – we know, we’ve been there. You may think it won’t matter, they’ll just forget, and so on. But it does matter – any joy you can bring into their life, even momentary, is an immense blessing to their mental health and well being.
For more ideas including outdoor activities, click on this link: Planning Spring & Summer Activities.