While the holidays are often a joyful time for seniors, once the decorations are packed away and loved ones have returned to their everyday, hectic lives, many older adults are at risk to sink into a time of post-holiday loneliness.
Seniors who live alone are most susceptible to experiencing feelings of sadness and isolation after the holidays, but they’re not the only ones. In fact, all older adults are at risk for a case of the post-holiday blues, as they reminisce over previous holiday celebrations, remember loved ones they’ve lost over the years, and think about the challenges of the new year to come.
If a senior you love seems to be at risk for post-holiday loneliness, it’s helpful to prepare now for the transition and to create some new traditions to give the senior something to look forward to. Our aging care team recommends trying the following ideas:
- Plan now for a future get-together. During your holiday visit, pick a date in the upcoming weeks for another family event, offering the senior and the rest of the family something fun to anticipate. For instance, plan a simple New Year’s resolution check-in party during the last week of January, during which each person can report on his/her progress towards achieving resolutions that were made, and everyone bringing a dish to share.
- Begin a chain letter. Split the whole extended family into groups of five people, and designate a number for each person who would like to participate, #1 – 5. The person who is #1 will write a brief letter during the first week of January, mailing it to the #2 person, who will read and then add his/her own updates to that letter and mail to the #3 person – and so on. The 5th person in the chain adds to the letter and then sends it back to the first person to read, who begins a new chain. Receiving mail on a regular basis with news about loved ones is a great way to lift the spirits of seniors.
- Partner with Senior HomeCare of Tucson. Senior HomeCare of Tucson, the top providers of senior care and dementia care in Tucson and surrounding areas, offers the ideal solution for post-holiday loneliness in older adults! Our trained, experienced caregivers are skilled in motivating seniors to stay socially and physically active through a variety of engaging activities, based on each person’s interests:
- Conversations and reminiscing
- Taking walks
- Enjoying crafts, puzzles, and games
- Fun outings
- And more
We’re always on hand to help alleviate loneliness for the seniors you love, and to ensure they have opportunities to retain a sense of community, purpose, and connection. Contact us at 520-355-4787 for a complimentary in-home consultation to find out what will work best in your loved one’s specific situation, and help make his or her coming year the best one yet!