Have a sparkling summer – Great activities for seniors
Thoughts of summer conjures up images of picnics, fireworks, parades, and other social gatherings. While some events and celebrations may need to be adapted for seniors, there’s no reasons to not enjoy summer festivities– whether you’re staying in or going out.
Five activities if you’re staying in
For older adults who are not able to get out, there are ways to bring summer celebrations to them.
- Host a backyard barbecue. Your older adult can participate when they want or just people-watch. This lets them join the fun, but keeps them from getting overtired or overstimulated, something that’s especially important for those with Alzheimer’s or dementia.
- Have a patriotic sing-along! Play a karaoke soundtrack from your computer or mobile device – try “America the Beautiful,” “My Country ‘Tis of Thee,” “This Land is Your Land,” or “Yankee Doodle Boy.”
- Take a seat. If attending summer celebration is not possible, find a parade or fireworks on TV.
- Enjoy a movie night. There are many classic movies that celebrate America’s history such as “Yankee Doddle Dandy” with James Cagney or “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington” with James Steward. Or, something more recent like “National Treasure.”
- And then there’s game night. Nothing says Americana than a board game. Play a simple card games or pick charades or checkers.
Tips for going out
Many senior can easily enjoy summer celebration with family and friends. But make sure you adapt the outing so it’s senior-friendly.
- Stay in a cool and shady spot to limit direct sun exposure.
- Be prepared for weather changes and bring a light jacket or blanket to keep them warm at night.
- Limit standing and plan for seating by bring a portable chair or cushion to make chairs more comfortable
- Hydrate! Bring water or a favorite beverage to stay hydrated.
- Take regular bathroom breaks to increase comfort and reduce or eliminate the chance of an accident.
- For seniors with Alzheimer’s or dementia, limit the time spent at large gatherings to reduce the chance they’ll get agitated, anxious, or angry.