The magic of a mindful multi-sensory day.
While many of us can feel that we are overstimulated by the business of daily living, when you are ageing in place or providing in-home care for the elderly, adequate sensory stimulation can be something that needs to be mindfully created. When our senses are underutilised, our cognition, mobility, and mental and physical health can be impacted. Making a point of activating all five senses throughout each day supports positive engagement with the world, reduces boredom and agitation, and brings joy and\ meaning to every day. As an in-home age care provider, Home Care Assistance supports mindful sensory stimulation. Our Care Workers encourage, support and facilitate such opportunities.
Many aged care facilities are creating multi-sensory rooms and areas to help both stimulate and soothe residents in aged care facilities. But such focused and dedicated spaces are not necessary to enjoy a full sensory experience during your day while ageing in place in the comfort of your own home. An in-home care agency can bring multisensory benefits to each day as part of your in-home health care, and, in fact, the more personalised the sensory experience the greater the impact on the individual.1
A fantastic way to simulate the senses at home is to make a point of heading outdoors each day. Yes, this is literally “stopping to smell the roses,” feeling the softness of the petals, and enjoying the colours of the flowers and foliage in your own garden or while on a short walk perhaps accompanied by your in-home care worker to enjoy them with you. With the support of family or in-home care services, a short trip to nearby natural attractions can also be great for the senses. Feeling the sand and the salty air at the beach, the smells of the sea, the sounds of the seagulls, or even a quick dip on a hot day can be a wonderfully stimulating time. Any parklands or bushland can be a great source of birdsong – native scents and flora to enjoy. Making a point of spotting particular species is a great engagement activity and conversation piece.
When the weather dictates indoor sensory time, why not head to the kitchen? Cooking and food are great ways to stimulate all the senses. Working with your hands, smelling the different ingredients and the cooking process, and of course tasting the finished product engages the senses, but also help with meal preparations. This can also be a great multisensory activity to share with your in-home care worker. Experimenting with new foods and new recipes is good for the mind and the body.
Craft activities are also great multisensory pursuits. Appreciating different textures of craft materials like fabrics, wool, feathers, wood, or jewels to create a collage piece, or creating a sound box or colour tubes that can be used in future activities with grandchildren or your in-home care support team. Why not try your hand at some sculpture with a simple pinch pot out of clay, or create your favourite animal out of coloured modelling clay? Enjoy a shopping trip with your in-home care worker to gather some fun materials for your project.
Creating homemade skin lotions and potions can bring an aromatherapy element to the day, as well as a great excuse for your Home Care Assistance Care Worker to give you a hand massage, which will feel and smell lovely for both parties involved. Create fizzy bath bombs for an impromptu aromatherapy foot bath to refresh tired feet and support circulation too.
Technology can be a great support when stimulating the senses, and that doesn’t have to mean just watching television, although a favourite movie can certainly engage the senses, and if you have a smart TV, you can find all sorts of ideas for sensory activities and other physical movement ideas like yoga and tai-chi. There is a world of playlists, unexplored music and sounds of nature you can access on the internet too, and perhaps create a weekly playlist for some auditory and emotional stimulation.
There is no doubt that meaningful engagement and stimulation of the senses enhances quality of life at any stage and helps ward off depression. Focusing on sensory activities can be a very mindful experience, and bring our attention to the present, enhancing the enjoyment of the little things in life. In-home care workers are skilled at bringing attention to these seemingly little things that can enhance the experience of daily life, improving cognitive, mental and physical health of people in their care. The support Home Care Assistance services can amp up your sensory game, bringing activity ideas, guiding your focus, and supporting you to explore your world through all five senses. Ask us at Home Care Assistance how we can bring some multisensory magic into your day!
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As a leading age care provider, Home Care Assistance offers tailored in-home care services for older Australians, enabling them to live happier and healthier lives in the comfort of their own homes.
We offer private and government subsidised Care Packages and have office locations that are a registered NDIS provider. Our Care Workers undergo extensive training in order to deliver unmatched in-home aged care services where people can continue ageing in place. We are proud ambassadors of the My Aged Care government funded aged care program, enabling Australians to successfully navigate the process and gain approval for in-home care support packages. Home Care Assistance offers hourly care, specialised care, Alzheimer’s and Dementia care, hospital to home care, and 24 hour in home care.