I love March Madness! This annual event (lasting many weeks) symbolizes a lot more than just talented young athletes. We can also see spring quickly approaching with the change in light, energies, new life, and excitement ahead. March is also a time for the snowbirds to start packing their bags and preparing to return to the cooler climates. For those of us working with older adults and their families, it is important to provide opportunities for healthy aging as the spring approaches.
What can you do for older adults on a daily basis? Just make a quick phone call during your lunch break or drive home from work (of course use bluetooth!). Check with the neighbors and ask them to keep an eye out for anyone who appears suspicious that may visit. Who has access to the mailbox? What has the code to the garage entrance? Is there adequate lighting around the entrances of the home? Could lightbulbs be changed? A new mat placed at the front door? The exterior windows cleaned? The fire alarm batteries changed? Sometimes we need to think a bit more outside the box. When the older adult says “I don’t need anything”, ask them about these items? Being proactive will reduce the urgency and emergency.
Healthinaging.org offers abundant resources and ideas for the professional, caregiver and older adult, check out these free publications: