Social isolation amongst our senior population has been a challenge for far longer than our current crisis, but with the onset of “Stay at Home” expectations, the likelihood of senior citizens suffering from isolation is greater than ever. With this in mind, here are some suggestions to ensure continued connection with your loved ones.
Calling is the old standby, and now a phone call means more than ever, as it may be the only form of communication a senior has with family and friends. Whether calling from home, or standing on the other side of a closed window--the impact of hearing a familiar voice brings seniors great comfort.
Seniors and family and close friends can have a lot of fun participating in Zoom and Skype calls if the individual has access to a computer or smartphone. . These calls can easily be facilitated by caregivers and are a great way to connect with a larger group of people. At Bross Street Assisted Living, each resident has a personal tablet connected to Wifi, for ease of communication.
In addition to Zoom and Skype, engaging in virtual games such as Words with Friends, Yahtzee or Scrabble is a great way to remind your loved one that you are out there, which in itself is reassuring. Not to mention fun!
Care packages and written cards are also a very welcomed surprise. Despite all of our modern conveniences, the familiarity of a handwritten letter or specially arranged care package, conveys a level of caring that seniors can appreciate on a physical level.
During these unprecedented times of social distancing, it is important to make extra effort to connect and think of special ways you can bring a loved one joy.. Ultimately, every thoughtful gesture and communication will remain with your loved one long after the pandemic has passed.