The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in mandates for social distancing and state-wide stay-at-home orders. Quarantine is challenging for many, but particularly for the elderly. Many older adults have little way to get out and about and look forward to visits from friends and family members. In most cases, these in-person visits – which are important for overall wellness – are on hold indefinitely. The following are suggestions to help you reach out and connect to your senior loved ones.
- Video Call
Many smartphones have a built-in video call feature like FaceTime, and there are also many applications for video chatting. Most of these apps (like Zoom, Skype, and others) are easy to install on a smartphone or tablet. Be patient, as it might be difficult to walk your loved one through setting up his or her device for video chatting. If your loved one has a home health aide, he or she can help make this an easy process. Once the setup is accomplished, plan to have consistent video chats at certain days/times.
- Write a Card or Letter
While it’s not a common way to communicate these days, a hand-written card or letter gives your senior loved one a tangible thing to touch and hold. Unexpected mail from family or a friend would cheer up anyone. Consider adding a photo or drawing which your loved one can display and see often.
- Send a Gift
Sending a treat in the mail is a lovely way to let loved ones know you’re thinking of them. You don’t have to spend a lot of money; some inexpensive items that help keep the mind occupied are: puzzles, photos, scrapbooking supplies, flowers or seeds, books.
As many of us are struggling with staying at home, it’s important to remember our older loved ones and how alone they may feel. Do what you can to check in frequently with your older loved ones and brighten their day. If you think your loved one requires the help of a home health professional during this time of isolation, give us a call at (847) 975-3950.
NOTE: Wash your hands with soap and warm water or use hand-sanitizer prior to writing a letter, or sending gifts in the mail.