It’s common for life to start slowing and settling down as people get older. While this is positive in a lot of ways, it can leave those in senior living communities struggling with loneliness. Luckily, there are many avenues of recourse available. If you recently placed your loved one in a retirement home, utilize the tips outlined below to ensure they remain healthy and happy.
3 Tips for Preventing Loneliness in Senior Living Residents
1. Get Them a Pet
Sometimes all it takes to brighten someone’s day is a furry little pal. If your senior loved one enjoys animals, see if they are interested in getting a pet. You can include them in the process by finding out what kind of pet they want and showing them pictures of animals at the local shelter. Just be sure that the senior living facility allows animals and that your loved one is up to the responsibility; some things to consider are whether they are capable of walking the pet (if they get a dog) and any allergies they might have.
2. Encourage Them to Take Up a Hobby
Senior living offers an excellent opportunity to discover new interests and hobbies. If your loved one has ever had an interest in learning a new skill, encourage them to finally take it up. For instance, they might want to practice painting or learn an instrument. If they want more of a socially driven activity, find out if the community offers group clubs like exercise classes or choirs.
3. Keep in Touch
One of the best and easiest ways to keep your loved one from becoming lonely is simply to communicate with them. Consider writing notes and letters to them whenever you get the opportunity, in addition to picking up the phone and calling them. Send care packages on special occasions, and visit on birthdays, holidays, or any other time they may be lonely. Assist your loved one in learning how to video conference on their computer, tablet, or smartphone so that you can bring them to your children’s athletic events or other activities.