As the Holiday season approaches, many of us are looking forward to spending time with our loved ones, enjoying homecooked meals, and unwinding with fun, holiday-oriented activities. Although the holidays are a time of happiness, they can also be a time of stress, especially for seniors. Since staying healthy is a challenge for most, it is important that seniors and their caregivers take the time to manage the Holiday festivities ahead properly.
Because Reverse Mortgage Answers happily serves a clientele consisting of homeowners age 62 and over, we want to ensure that our clients enjoy this Holiday season while also taking the time to stay healthy, reduce stress, and avoid the holiday blues. Licensed clinical social worker and owner of The Elder Expert, Amy Fuchs, states that “one of the difficulties of the holiday season is not knowing an elder adult’s limits. You can anticipate that they might need help, but they might not express that they have slowed down.” Therefore, we have put together some helpful tips for seniors.
Tips for Senior Homeowners to Stay Healthy During This Holiday Season:
- Make Healthy Food Choices – With rich meals and desserts, many of us will be tempted to overindulge. Plan meals with other events in mind, as such as eating a lighter lunch of salad or soup before a large dinner with friends and family. It is also crucial that seniors continue to follow their dietary restricts as advised by their medical professionals. Keeping healthy options like fresh fruit and vegetables on hand is advisable.
- Stay Hydrated – Drinking water is vital, especially for those seniors who will travel out of town during this season. “Senior citizens, especially, need to drink plenty of fluids, as not drinking enough water could cause hospitalization,” Fuchs says. Carry a portable water bottle when running errands, or even while staying indoors alone.
- Rest After Traveling – For those seniors who are traveling long distances to visit family and friends, getting proper rest is essential. After arriving at their destinations, seniors may want to recharge by taking a nap instead of shopping, or immediately spending time with loved ones.
- Shake Up Those Traditions – Most seniors are happy to help clean and to be involved in cooking. However, hosting a large holiday meal can be stressful. If a senior homeowner traditionally hosts holiday meals, consider passing the tradition down to the younger generation. Fuchs recommends that “ if the senior insists on cooking, younger family members can at least volunteer to clean or help out in other ways.”
- Decrease Gifts – Holiday season can be financially challenging for seniors, especially those on a fixed income. Purchasing gifts for family and friends may be difficult. To reduce stress from paying for gifts, consider having a “family grab bag” where everyone contributes one gift.
A few preventative measures and the willingness to tweak traditions can allow seniors to stay healthy and enjoy the upcoming holiday season.