Freudenthal Home Health Blog

Freudenthal Home Health salutes family caregivers in the St. Joseph, MO area who are giving wonderful care and help to their senior loved ones each and every day. Our goal with this blog is to give information and resources to help and support St. Joseph, MO area family caregivers.

5 Activities To Help Beat The Winter Blues

Are you on the lookout for ideas to keep your older adult active during these cold, wintry months? Depending on their mobility and health condition, the idea of staying active during months of snow, ice and cold weather can seem daunting.

1. Cook together

 Making a delicious, hot meal with your parent or spouse has surprising, heartwarming benefits. Not only can you spend time together actively doing something, but the act of reading recipes, measuring, setting timers and cooking is great stimulation for the brain and helps fight cognitive decline and memory loss.  For those who use a wheelchair to get around, tasks that don’t involve standing at the stove are best – reading the recipe, setting a timer, or stirring ingredients together on a low table are creative ways to involve them in the cooking fun.

Making a delicious, hot meal with your parent or spouse has surprising, heartwarming benefits. Not only can you spend time together actively doing something, but the act of reading recipes, measuring, setting timers and cooking is great stimulation for the brain and helps fight cognitive decline and memory loss.

For those who use a wheelchair to get around, tasks that don’t involve standing at the stove are best – reading the recipe, setting a timer, or stirring ingredients together on a low table are creative ways to involve them in the cooking fun.

2. Knit, crochet, or quilt

 Can the person you care for turn their hobby into a way to care for others? Knitting, quilting or crocheting make great indoor activities during those winter days spent by a warm fire with a cup of tea.  These activities also carry a positive outcome. Seniors could knit hats to donate to local homeless shelters or hospitals, make a quilt for a grandchild, or crochet blankets for children in need. These are engaging activities for your older adult as well as a way for them give back to others and feel good about themselves.

Can the person you care for turn their hobby into a way to care for others? Knitting, quilting or crocheting make great indoor activities during those winter days spent by a warm fire with a cup of tea.

These activities also carry a positive outcome. Seniors could knit hats to donate to local homeless shelters or hospitals, make a quilt for a grandchild, or crochet blankets for children in need. These are engaging activities for your older adult as well as a way for them give back to others and feel good about themselves.

3. Exercise

 Literally warm the heart by pumping up the blood flow with  low-impact exercises  your older adult can do at home. Routine exercise is hugely beneficial to older adults and can include activities  like daily walks, yoga, swimming, or even getting in a good stretch while sitting in a wheelchair.  Exercise is critical to preventing illnesses and ailments that often accompany old age. It also boosts feelings of positivity and confidence. Regular physical fitness helps with coordination and balance too, which are key to preventing falls in the home.

Literally warm the heart by pumping up the blood flow with low-impact exercises your older adult can do at home. Routine exercise is hugely beneficial to older adults and can include activities  like daily walks, yoga, swimming, or even getting in a good stretch while sitting in a wheelchair.

Exercise is critical to preventing illnesses and ailments that often accompany old age. It also boosts feelings of positivity and confidence. Regular physical fitness helps with coordination and balance too, which are key to preventing falls in the home.

4. Video chat with family and friends

 Cold winter days can lead to seniors spending a significant amount of time indoors. Combat feelings of isolation or loneliness by taking the time to reach out to friends and family who may live far away.  A free Skype or Google+ account lets anyone video chat using their computer or laptop, or if you have an iPhone, you can video chat via Facetime with others who have iPhones. Set up regular video chat dates with family or old friends during times of the day when your older adult is most awake and alert.  Not only does connecting with others benefit your older adult’s overall well-being, it also gives them something to look forward to during seasonally darker days.

Cold winter days can lead to seniors spending a significant amount of time indoors. Combat feelings of isolation or loneliness by taking the time to reach out to friends and family who may live far away.

A free Skype or Google+ account lets anyone video chat using their computer or laptop, or if you have an iPhone, you can video chat via Facetime with others who have iPhones. Set up regular video chat dates with family or old friends during times of the day when your older adult is most awake and alert.

Not only does connecting with others benefit your older adult’s overall well-being, it also gives them something to look forward to during seasonally darker days.

5. Share special memories and make new ones

 Sharing memories with older adults can be an enriching experience for both of you. The person feels accepted and cared for. You may learn some things about the person that you didn't already know and that help you better understand his or her reactions to situations, including loss. Also, the lessons you learn by listening to another person's experiences and how he or she handled them may help you in the future when you have similar experiences.

Sharing memories with older adults can be an enriching experience for both of you. The person feels accepted and cared for. You may learn some things about the person that you didn't already know and that help you better understand his or her reactions to situations, including loss. Also, the lessons you learn by listening to another person's experiences and how he or she handled them may help you in the future when you have similar experiences.

Looking for even more ideas on activities? Fear not, there are loads of creative, safe and impactful senior activities they’ll love that will warm their heart too!

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