Is your elderly father growing bored with staying home all the time? When illness or injury get in the way of an active senior social life, it can be quite frustrating. As a family caregiver, you are responsible for keeping your aging dad safe, comfortable, clean, fed and healthy. However, none of this can address the fact that your father also needs an active social life and should participate in activities when he can.
So, how can family caregivers like you get their aging dads active in their home, their neighborhood and their community? Every activity should be modified to fit your elderly parent’s physical abilities, stamina, strength, interests and personality.
Here are just a few ideas:
Invite people over for a cookout. Plan an outdoor party during the warm summer months. It can include a barbecue with friends or a potluck for family members. Make sure your aging dad has enough space for the event and let him help with the planning of the meals and the activities.
Attend a sporting event. While your elderly dad may not be able to attend a professional sporting event there are plenty of amateur athletic competitions that he could watch. Many communities have intermural sports, and local high schools are always hosting games and meets all year round.
Visit the park. Whether your elderly dad wants to do a picnic or just take a walk and get some exercise, the park is an ideal destination. Most parks have smooth walking paths and shady bench seating. Whether bird watching or people watching, your aging parent will find it a nice way to get out into the community and pass the time.
Attend community events. Most communities have something going on each weekend. You just have to look on the city website to find a schedule of events. Common community activities include plays, concerts, car shows, fairs, rodeos, craft fairs and holiday celebrations. Don’t forget to look at the events happening in nearby cities and towns as well.
Invite out-of-town relatives and friends. Seniors love to connect with loved ones who are far away. They can invite family members from afar to visit for a while and spend some time together. Whether it’s siblings, nieces, nephews, cousins or other loved ones, visitors are always a special treat.
Go out with the elder care provider. Your aging dad and his elder care provider can do some interesting things as well. They can take a trip to a local museum, tourist attraction, state or national park or other interesting historic site or landmark of interest.
Your aging father may have health issues to deal with, but that doesn’t mean they have to be housebound. When you plan on some fun activities to do with your elderly parent, you’ll help him have some fun and build strong memories.