How Seniors Can Stay Active and Connected During Covid-19
COVID-19 has presented a number of changes to the community, and many of us are learning how to adjust to the new normal. At any age, it’s important to stay healthy and safe during a pandemic, but especially for those who are most vulnerable – in this case, seniors and those with compromised immune systems.
The good news is, there are plenty of ways to stay active and connected during COVID-19, and your care facility is here to help.
Practice social distance, but not isolation
Social distancing is the best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19 from person to person. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggest remaining at least 6 feet away from other people to avoid spreading and contracting the virus.
However, social distancing does not mean you need to be completely isolated. In fact, it’s important to stay connected to your friends and family during this time. Feeling alone can lead to depression, anxiety, physical health complications, and feelings of despair.
In order to combat these feelings, talk to your care team about using video technology to have regular “meet-ups” with your loved ones. Seeing others face-to-face can really make a difference when you start feeling stressed and isolated. Make sure you’re spending time connecting with others in your community virtually, or at a safe distance. Many senior care facilities have even developed programs and activities to ensure you’re able to interact with your peers safely.
Take advantage of at-home care practices
Whenever possible, take advantage of telehealth technology available through your provider to meet with your doctor, as well as at-home treatment options, such as home dialysis, to receive care in the safety and comfort of your own home.
Many doctors’ offices are encouraging patients to leverage video conferencing for regular check-ups and appointments in order to avoid unnecessary exposure to the virus. If you do have to leave your house, make sure you follow the CDC’s recommended guidelines and practice good hygiene.
Find creative ways to get moving
Does your care facility have socially distant activities you can participate in? There may be fitness classes available at your facility, or virtual activities that get you moving. Even a regular walk around the campus can help keep your body up to speed.
Your health and wellness are still a priority during this time, so make sure you find a way that gets you up and moving.
Start a book club
Another way to stay connected with your friends during COVID-19 is by starting a book club! You can meet virtually as often as you’d like, and read new books – or revisit your favorites – in between discussion.
A book club is a great way to start a conversation when it seems like the world is on pause and no one has anything new to report. It even gives you a reason to turn off the news and indulge in a good story and human interaction. Some care facilities even host clubs and discussions like this to help encourage seniors to connect with one another and share their thoughts.
Learn a new skill
Finally, this could be the perfect time to learn a new skill or try out a new hobby. A number of care facilities are bringing in instructors in house to teach a cooking class or an art lesson. If there’s something you’d like to learn, talk to your care team to see what’s possible.
Staying active and connected during COVID-19 is important for your health and wellbeing. If you begin to feel stressed or overwhelmed, talk to your caretaker right away or reach out to a care facility in your area to start looking for the solution that’s best for you.