Thanksgiving is just around the corner and now is the time to start planning your festivities, keeping one thing in mind: elderly family members or friends living in nursing homes will want to join in too. While finding a way to enjoy the day can be difficult, it is possible.
Try starting with these five activities.
Elderly family members may have dietary restrictions on what they can and cannot eat. So, preparing a “Thanksgiving Dish” may be a better option than bringing an entire meal.
2. Dress in Pilgrim’s Clothing.
This is a fun way to reconnect with seniors. If clothing is not available, you can make a Pilgrim hat and accessories with construction paper. Or, you and your elderly loved ones can dress in something else that suits your traditions.
3. Watch a Thanksgiving Movie Together.Strenuous physical activities can be dangerous for seniors, so dancing may be off the table. Yet, a Thanksgiving movie can provide entertainment for all members of the family. For an added touch, consider playing a home movie of previous holidays or special occasions for your loved ones.
4. Get Creative.
Creativity is one of the best ways to engage with seniors. Consider hand-painting, drawing or another artistic creation when visiting loved ones in nursing homes. Remember arthritic hands or mobility problems can make holding brushes or tools difficult. So, adjust your plans accordingly.
5. Be Present.
The most important thing about reconnecting with elderly family members is simply being present. In nursing homes, it is easy to feel forgotten or abandoned, but you can change that. Spend Thanksgiving with older family members, and enjoy their fondness for you. Showcase your love and respect for them, and you will receive the most heart-warming reward of all.
This Thanksgiving, do not be afraid of visiting loved ones because they are in a nursing home or other health care facility. You can ease the tensions with the above-mentioned activities, or you can try something else, such as singing. Remember to keep the noise levels down because some seniors may get tired early during the festivities.
If a loved one has expressed concerns over his or her care in a nursing home, consider speaking with a nursing home abuse lawyer at Garcia, Artigliere and Medby by calling 1-800-281-8515. Or, if you prefer, you may also request a free case evaluation online.