Managing the Holidays & Our Elderly Loved Ones with “CHEER”
“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times”
Sometimes that famous Charles Dickens’s phrase seems too suitable for the holiday season. The holidays mean all sorts of things to each of us. For many, the holidays are very much about family. ‘Tis the Season to spend time with our aging parents, siblings, and other relatives. The holidays can be stressful for anyone, especially for the elderly if they are feeling lonely or beginning to have difficultly living independently.
If we approach family time around the holidays with compassion, understanding and positive attitude, the holidays can be the most wonderful time of the year after all.
The CHEER plan helps make the most of your time with aging parents or elderly loved ones over the holidays.
CHECK in on their well-being
This is especially important if you haven’t visited in a while. Even if we see our aging parents regularly, it’s still essential to continually check in on them.
- Check their refrigerator and pantry to make sure there are no expired foods and they’re eating healthy foods.
- Check for safety or hazardous concerns. Ensure you are keeping elderly safe at home.
- Check their medications
- Check how they act when you spend time with them.
- Do they have difficultly getting around?
- Are they confused or frustrated easily?
HELP keep your aging parent feel included
It is easy for seniors to become lonely or depressed from living alone or physical limitations. It’s important to be inclusive and go over and beyond to help older relatives be/feel included in celebrations. This can be done by:
- Offering transportation to and from family gatherings
- Be there for emotional support during the holidays
- Help ahead of time with holiday shopping, gift wrapping, or making a food dish
Feeling included and contributing the holidays will help with their self worth. However, make sure they’re comfortable and not overburdened with preparations. Simply taking time to listen to them can resolve many of these problems.
ENABLE your elderly loved one to live independently
Is their living environment safe? Do they have the support, knowledge or tools to live independently? Have you set them up with the resources or technology available to keep them safe? Is it time to hire a caregiver for additional help?
ENJOY keep your time together
After you ensure the safety and happiness of the elderly, it’s time to relax and enjoy the holidays and your time together. Be merry but mindful of their limitations.
REMEMBER the good holiday times
Allow the opportunity for all old and young to get nostalgic and reminisce about our favorite or funniest holiday memories. It’s the perfect time to get out photo albums, family videos or play Christmas classics to bring back the past for elderly folks.
We wish you a very, merry and safe holiday.
Remember we are here 24-7 to help. If you are looking for caregiving for a loved one or yourself, we are here for you. Contact us today for further professional guidance.
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