Living in colder climates most likely means spending much of the winter cooped up inside for seniors. When the weather turns warmer and the leaves return to the trees, everybody—including seniors—want to partake in this change of scenery.
Creating activities that help a senior enjoy the lengthening days and warmer weather doesn’t have to be a lot of extra work. All you need is a little advance planning. Here are some suggestions.
Warm sunshine and gentle breeze is a tonic for us all, but it can be especially refreshing for a senior who has spent the season inside. Remember, though, that older adults may be far more sensitive to the temperature than you, so be sure to help them dress comfortably with layers that can be removed if necessary.
Hats and scarfs are a wise idea. Apply sunscreen to any exposed skin—and that’s advice which should be taken for everybody who’s heading outside. You don’t want to be rewarded with a sunburn. What to do when heading outside? You’ll never go wrong with the old standbys:
- A walk around the park, or even the nearby neighborhood.
- Enjoy a meal outside.
- Head to a plant nursery—your local chain home improvement store will even work, as they will have nice, wide aisles and few obstacles for wheelchairs
- Jump in the car and take a scenic drive. Extra points if the destination is a farmer’s market.
Bring the Outside In
Not all older adults are mobile. It’s still easy to help them enjoy the mild springtime weather. Open the windows and let fresh air fill the room. Or, create a comfortable space just outside on a patio or deck. The idea may sound silly, but don’t reject it because it sounds childish. Blow some bubbles. Anything that helps to bring back memories is beneficial for older adults.
If a senior can’t venture outside, there are still plenty of ways to help them enjoy the sights and sounds associated with spring. Window bird feeders and hummingbird feeders attract the birds returning for the season. It can provide hours of appreciated distraction for someone who’s not able to go outside.
While others might be outside preparing a garden, you can team up with and older adult to do some indoor planting. Windowsill herb garden kits are inexpensive and easy to set up. There’s the added benefit of being able to eat what you grow. Indoor plants also help to filter the air.
Mother Nature is doing a refresh. Help an older adult do the same thing. It’s a great way to help them reconnect with the present.