88% of Americans admit to feeling extra stress during the holiday season — and seniors are no exception.
If an aging adult is already feeling stressed by their health or mobility issues, the holiday season may seem impossible to navigate. But as their caregiver, you have the ability to bring back Christmas cheer to the holiday and make this Christmas one to remember.
Keep reading for some effective ways caregivers can help aging adults with Christmas stressors.
1. Help Think of New Traditions
Cutting down a fresh Christmas tree. Decorating your house with lights on a ladder. Buying and wrapping tons of presents.
Holiday traditions are a great thing to do year after year. But, at a certain age, many of the things may not possible anymore. Instead of letting the senior get upset about the things they can't do
anymore, help them create new traditions.
Instead of cutting down a tree you can set up an artificial tree and they can add the ornaments. Instead of outdoor decorating, invite them to look at Christmas light displays in your car while listening to holiday music. Many seniors can't buy as many presents as they once did due to a fixed income, so help them make homemade gifts instead.
2. Adjust Holiday Meals
Odds are that your client made dozens of holiday meals over the years. But the years of cooking all day for a huge family are no longer realistic.
Instead, ask them what their favorite holiday dish is and help them make it. Then, they can bring the dish to their family gathering in a pot-luck style. If they don't have a family dinner to attend, you can create a full meal with pre-prepared dishes from the grocery store.
3. Create a Schedule for Visitors
The holidays can be the loneliest time of the year, especially for seniors who have lost friends and family members.
Instead of letting seniors be lonely, create a schedule for their planned visitors. Instead of everyone visiting within the same three-hour period, schedule out their visits. That way, they can have company across several days which will help fend off loneliness.
If there are family members that can't make the trip to visit, help your senior use technology to connect with them. Teach them how to video chat with family members so they can wish everyone a Merry Christmas.
4. Focus on Their Health
Arguably the most important thing you can do during the holidays is focusing on the aging adult's health.
They'll be distracted by all the events and visitors, which means they may forget their medications or routines. Make sure they're sticking to their normal schedule as much as possible to keep them healthy. Also, encourage them to get enough rest especially during busy days.
From Christmas Stressors to Christmas Cheer
The holidays don't have to be full of Christmas stressors. Instead, with a little forethought, you can help bring Christmas cheer to an aging adult.
If you're a caregiver wanting to help make the holidays great for someone, visit Lifestyle Home Care to see our career opportunities. Or, if you're a loved one with an aging adult, help them have the best holiday with a little extra help from a caregiver. Contact us today to see how a caregiver can help you.