Washington Community

Aging with Care | Transform Outlook for Aging Family Members

Aimee Sharp
Author | Shield HealthCare
01/21/15  12:51 AM PST
Celebrating the elderly

Aging with Care | Transform Outlook for Aging Family Members By Marla Beck for the Madison Park Times

The new year is here! Let’s look ahead by creating a unique New Year’s gift for your favorite elder.

Caring for our elders can be challenging. The challenge can be so great that we sometimes forget that our elders face the greater challenges. Aging can be troublesome, often bringing on problems like isolation, failing memory and decreased mobility. For elders of advancing years, dependency can diminish self-esteem.

As caregivers and family members we need to do whatever we can to lessen the unwelcome impacts of aging.

I am going to suggest a task that will result in ongoing engagement with your elder. I want you to create a tool that will help alleviate your elder’s guilt about failing memory.

Get a flip calendar that has a page for each month and empty squares for the days.

Starting with New Year’s Day, fill in the squares. Throughout 2015, use colorful images to designate special dates. For New Year’s Day, use footballs or confetti. Hearts for Valentine’s Day. Bunnies for Easter. The Star of David for Passover. An American flag for Memorial Day. Fireworks for the Fourth of July. Hydroplanes for Seafair. Pumpkins for Halloween. You get the idea.

Then personalize the calendar. Mark birthdates. Write family members’ names on the appropriate dates, and attach photos, especially photos of the grandkids and great-grandkids.

Make a date

Next, I want to challenge you. Add eight or 10 special dates throughout the year that are not the traditional family get-togethers, days you promise to spend with your elder. Think in terms of things they would enjoy doing.

For the start of spring, a picture of rhododendrons will mark the day you take your elder for a drive to enjoy spring colors. If appropriate, mark Mother’s and/or Father’s Day.

Read the Full Article at Madison Park Times.