The holiday season can be loaded with a whirlwind of activities for the older adults we love, with family gatherings, holiday parties, religious events and services, deciding on the best gifts for the ones they love. Yet after the ornaments are packed away and families have resumed the routine busyness of life, many older adults struggle with a typical but little-discussed condition: post-holiday senior loneliness.
While naturally older adults who live alone are most prone to feelings of isolation and sadness when the holiday festivities are over, all older adults are susceptible to a case of the blues, as they look to the year ahead while reminiscing over years past. It’s essential for family members to implement a plan to help their older loved ones experience a positive transition. Give some thought to the following strategies:
- Make plans for the next gathering. Decide upon a date in the coming weeks for another family function, offering the older adult and the rest of the family something fun to look forward to. For example, arrange an informal New Year’s resolution check-in party for the last week of January, where each person can report on his or her progress towards resolutions that were made, and each bringing along a dish to share a potluck meal.
- Put together a chain letter. Split the family up into groups of five, and give a number to each person who’d like to participate, i.e., #1 – 5. The person with #1 begins by writing a short letter in the first week of January, mailing it to the #2 person, who reads and then contributes to that letter and then sends to the #3 person – and so on. The last person in the chain adds to the letter and then mails it back to the first person to read, and then a new chain can be started. Receiving ongoing mail with news about loved ones is a great pick-me-up for seniors.
- Partner with Live Well at Home. Live Well at Home’s trained and experienced care companions are the perfect solution to senior loneliness! Our caregivers are proficient in motivating seniors to remain socially and physically active through a wide variety of enjoyable activities, according to each person’s interests:
- Reminiscing and conversations
- Puzzles, games, and crafts
- Exercise programs
- Transportation and accompaniment to fun outings
- And much more!
Let us help reduce post-holiday loneliness for the older adults you love, and preserve a sense of community, purpose, and connection all through the year. Our Lincoln-area team is available for once-weekly visits up through and including full-time, live-in care and companionship. Contact us at 800-478-1209 and request a complimentary in-home consultation from the Lincoln dementia care specialists, to determine what will work best in your particular situation, and help make your loved ones’ coming year the best one yet! See our full California service area here.