The cold, wet, winter weather makes it more tempting to stay home in the warmth, than to venture outdoors. While this can help avoid catching colds and flu, it can also lead to social isolation, which can have a negative effect on a person’s mental health¹. There are ways to stay connected without having to leave the house, as well as strategies to employ when you do, in order to stay healthy and comfortable during winter.
At Home Care Assistance, our Care Professionals know and value the importance of staying connected. As such, they can help you get to appointments or events, and can also help you navigate technology to stay connected with friends and family from the comfort of your own home. Here are a few useful tips on how to stay connected throughout the winter months:
Schedule regular phone or video calls with family and friends
One of the easiest ways to stay connected during the winter months is to schedule regular phone or video calls with loved ones. This allows seniors to hear familiar voices, catch up on news and share stories, even if they can’t be together physically. In addition to this, there is also an excellent service called FriendLine, which is for anyone wanting to have a natter with one of their friendly volunteers².
Participate in online social activities
With the rise of technology, seniors can now participate in several online social activities. From virtual book clubs to Zoom exercise classes, tech savvy seniors can make new friends and connect with people who share similar interests, online. The internet has several social platforms, and you can find different groups that cater to your specific interests and hobbies.
Send handwritten notes or cards
Receiving handwritten notes or cards is always a lovely surprise, especially during the winter months when people mainly communicate digitally. Seniors can use this opportunity to brighten their loved ones’ day and let them know they are thinking of them.
Start a virtual game night
Playing games is always a fun way to connect with loved ones. During the winter months, seniors can start a virtual game night with family and friends using apps such as Zoom or Skype to virtually play games like bingo, trivia, bridge and even board games. There are also some fantastic games that can be downloaded and played online with family and friends⁴. Your local library is also another great source for physical board games, with many offering them on loan if you’re keen to play at home or down at your local community centre.
Join or start a book or movie club
You could either join or consider starting a book or movie club, where you can gather with friends in person at your local community centre, or online once a week. For example, you could watch an episode of Downton Abbey or any other favourite shows, and then discuss it with your friends.
When it comes to movies, there are many options with both paid streaming services such as Netflix⁵, Paramount Plus and Binge, as well as free streaming services such as SBS, ABC, iVIew, 7plus and 9Now.
Attend virtual events
Many organisations and groups now host virtual events that seniors can attend. These events include concerts, exhibitions, and even lectures. Seniors can take advantage of these opportunities to learn new things, experience different cultures, and connect with like-minded people online.
That said, there may be instances where you will leave the house and if you do, whether it’s to go to the shops, to visit family and friends, or visit your local community centre, it is important to ensure that you are dressed warmly at all times. In addition to this, check the weather forecast for the day to prepare yourself and ask your Home Care Assistance Care Professional to assist with making suitable arrangements for transport in the event of adverse weather. Finally, avoiding all the nasties that come with winter such as colds, the flu and any other viruses circulating, it is important to take extra precaution when venturing outdoors in public spaces. Seniors are known to be more susceptible to illness during winter, so washing and sanitising your hands regularly, keeping your distance and wearing a mask where necessary, can go a long way in avoiding this.
Support of a home care company like Home Care Assistance, can bring enormous benefit and comfort to your quality of life while living independently at home. Home Care Assistance has viable solutions when it comes to supporting independent living. For more information, get in touch with Home Care Assistance near me today.
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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.