5 Tips to Stay Connected With Your Elderly Parents During Covid
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COVID 19 is still out there, and it’s crucial now more than ever to protect yourself and your loved ones if you have any health risks. Your elderly parents are a vulnerable population as many of them might have underlying health conditions. Some might continue to suffer in silence but it doesn’t need to be this way.
Nursing homes are following CDC recommendations to slow the spread of the virus. They have canceled visits, group activities, and volunteering. This being a lonely period for them, below are a few ways that you can stay connected with your elderly parents during this time.
Make video calls
Suppose your elderly parent has access to a computer or smartphone and the internet, you can schedule video calls. These are more reassuring and comforting as your parent gets to see your face. During these uncertain times, video calls help your elderly parents feel connected with family and feel secure knowing that everyone is doing fine.
Online tools such as zoom, facetime, Google hangouts, and skype have quality free video calling options that can help you stay in touch. Video calling is also necessary as you get to assess your elderly parent’s health and well-being. If you notice any sign of mistreatment, contact a nursing home abuse attorney.
Schedule once-in-a-while in-person visits
If you live near your elderly parents or the nursing home, make a point of visiting them. Video calls cannot compare to in-person visits. However, be sure to meet outside where there is sunlight, wear your PPE, and maintain social distance. Meeting in the open air is safer than indoors. Visit with a few family members and enjoy conversing over snacks.
Make phone calls
For most senior adults, learning how to use new technology can pose a challenge. If there’s no one around to help them set up video calls, you can always get in touch through the good old-fashioned phone call. There is no setup needed with phone calls, and elderly parents can have your contact number on speed dial.
Establish virtual routines
During the lockdown, it is necessary to establish a routine with your elderly parents and stick to it. Apart from video calling to see how they are doing, schedule daily routines for meditation, take a nutritious breakfast, and exercise. Carrying out these activities together, even though virtually, keeps you connected and helps with their mental and physical health. Cross off tasks when you’re through and encourage your parents to write a schedule and create timers to alert them.
Include them in family activities
With only some being stuck in their homes, there may not be time for your elderly parents to play with the grandkids. However, this doesn’t mean they can’t be a part of other family activities. Organize group chats on online platforms like zoom and choose different forms of entertainment like quizzes and games. Although it may not be as engaging as physical gatherings, it helps them feel connected to their loved ones, especially if they are at risk due to health conditions.
Take care of the elderly even when you’re apart by staying connected. Schedule routine phone calls to assess their well-being and check how they’re holding up. Once in a while, schedule an in-person visit but be sure to observe COVID 19 protocols if they are in a nursing home, etc. While physical gatherings with family and friends may not be possible for them, create chat groups and invite your elderly parents to participate in the conversations or entertainment activities.
*This article is based on personal suggestions and/or experiences and is for informational purposes only. This should not be used as professional advice. Please consult a professional where applicable.