Help Elderly Deal With The Outside World
Active seniors are usually healthier and happier than
seniors who are isolated and inactive. As your loved one ages, she might become more fearful about getting out and
about, especially if she has medical problems or difficulty thinking clearly at times.
You can help your elderly loved one deal with the
outside world, and keep her active for as long as possible so she will be able to enjoy life and you can
treasure your time together.
If your loved one is still driving, you should make sure she is safe in doing so. If
she has any physical problems such as vertigo or memory problems, it may be time to take away the keys. If she does
drive, make sure her car is always in good shape so she doesn't have to deal with flat tires or break
Put a GPS locator in her car and talk with her about
safe driving only and staying off the streets after dark or when the weather is bad. If your loved one is unable to
drive, it is important you work with her to arrange other ways she can get out and socialize.
She may need to take advantage of public transportation,
rely on friends, or use complementary transportation provided by her church or social club.
Consider what elderly care equipment your loved one needs to function out in the
world. She may need a step stool to get in and out of vehicles, or a walker to help with mobility. A folding seat
might be nice so she can stop and rest when she needs to. Maybe she needs a wheelchair or a rolling walker. Much of
this equipment is covered by insurance and having what she needs can mean the difference between living a boring
life in isolation and having an active social life.
If her health allows it, your senior may enjoy traveling by air. Even if she has
slight memory problems, she may still be able to fly to another family member as long as the airline is notified in
advance. You can arrange to have her placed on the plane by wheelchair and removed so there is no chance of her
getting lost. However, since many elderly people do struggle with confusion and memory problems, it is always a
good idea to have your loved one wear an ID bracelet or pendant that has the cell phone numbers of relatives that
can be notified in case she ever gets lost or confused while away from home.
Even if she just gets out locally, there are all kinds of things she can do to stay
active. Many restaurants and places of entertainment have senior citizen specials so she can eat and play for less.
Your senior may enjoy dining, going to movies, visiting museums, or just walking in the park. The more active she
is, the more stimulated her mind is and the more exercise she will get. This will help her to stay both mentally
and physically healthy.
Managing money may be difficult for your loved one if she goes out without you.
Rather than counting bills or risk losing an important credit card, you can give her a prepaid card. Just put
enough on it to cover the cost of a day out so she will be able to easily pay her own way. If she loses it, it
won't be as serious as losing a real credit card.
While your loved one most likely enjoys your company, she probably would enjoy
spending time with others as well. Try to arrange dates with other family members too and see if you can get her
active in a local senior center so she can make plenty of friends her own age. She may also enjoy church activities
now even if she didn't when she was younger.
Imagine spending your days at home with nothing to do. It doesn't sound like much fun
and it isn't fun for the elderly either. Seniors can stay active and participate in outside world activities well
into their golden years as long as their special elderly care needs are met so they are able to function without
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